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Audio Technica ATH-AD500 review

Alan Lu
25 Feb 2010
Audio Technica ATH-AD500
Our Rating 
Price when reviewed 
72
inc VAT

Audio Technica's ATH-AD500 feel very comfy and sound good, but not as good as the competition.

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Most headphones have a retractable headband to accommodate differently sized heads, but Audio Technica's latest pair of headphones, the ATH-AD500, has a flexible, bendy headband instead. It automatically expands and contracts to fit your head, comfortably fitting even this writer's giant noggin.

This flexibility, combined with the integrated padded wings, makes it one of the most comfortable pair of headphones that we've worn. The fit feels a bit loose, but it didn't fall off unless we did some serious headbanging.

The flexible headband may look odd and fragile, but it actually feels quite robust. The downside of the design is that the headphones can't be folded up, so the ATH-AD500 is quite chunky. The captive cable is also very long at 3m, so it's better suited for use at home with your computer rather than on the go with your MP3 player.

The open drivers mean that the ATH-AD500 leaks sound. Its not the leakiest headphones we've heard, but other people will be able to hear what you're listening to in a quiet office. The open drivers also mean that the ATH-AD500 isn't very good at keeping out background noise. Its not well-suited for listening in noisy environments, but it isn't marketed as a noise isolation set so this isn't a critical flaw.

The ATH-AD500 doesn't sound as loud as other headphones we've heard. Although far from tinny sounding, the bass isn't as deep and rumbling as we would have liked, so bass-heavy music sounds a little subdued. Backing vocals in some pop songs sound a little muted, but vocals were otherwise generally clear and detailed with a good balance between vocals and instruments so neither are drowned out. Jazz, blues and classical music also sound crisp and clear, but lack warmth and richness.

Audio Technica's ATH-AD500 is by means a bad pair of headphones, but the audio quality is merely satisfactory. This is disappointing for a pair of headphones at this price. We'd rather have Teufel's similarly priced AC 9050 PH headphones, which sound far richer, warmer and bass-heavy.

Details

Price£72
Detailshttp://eu.audio-technica.com/en/
Rating***

Specifications

Typeover-ear headphones
Driveropen
Active noise-cancellingno
Power sourcenone/mains
Sensitivity99dB
Frequency response10-30,000
Impedence66 ohms
Plug type3.5mm stereo jack plug
Inline volumeNo
Weight260g
Cable length3.00m
Extras6.3mm adapter

Buying Information

Price£72
Supplierhttp://www.iheadphones.co.uk
Detailshttp://eu.audio-technica.com/en/

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