Audio Technica is joining the truly wireless fray. The company long respected for its excellent balancing of price and performance is introducing two models of true wireless earbuds at IFA 2018.
The ATH-CKR7TW — a name like that really just rolls off the tongue, doesn’t it friends? — is designed for optimal sound performance. It features “specially tuned 11mm drivers” and a “diamond-like carbon coated diaphragm, pure iron yoke, and brass stabilizer that contribute to the accurate reproduction, ensuring more precise audio.” Headphone jargon aside, battery life is rated at 6 hours on a single charge, with 9 hours worth of extra battery waiting in the carrying case. That case reminds me of the one Sony uses for its WF-1000x earbuds, but more rounded.
The earbuds also support Bluetooth 5.0 and aptX, AAC, and SBC codecs. Available in black or gray, the ATH-CKR7TWs promise a snug fit and include “an interchangeable 3D loop” for added support. When seated in someone’s ears, it almost looks like they’re pointed straight up, which is a little unconventional.
Here’s more on the audio end of things:
To maximise driver performance the acoustic and electronic compartments are isolated to minimise the airflow that can adversely affect the audio. The result is a clear, accurate, high resolution fidelity. Elsewhere, the audio-grade digital-to-analogue converter (DAC) and amplifier components are carefully designed to ensure the signal stream can deliver high-quality audio reproduction.
This set of earbuds will retail for £229 / €249 when they ship sometime this fall.
And then there’s a second pair that’s more focused on users who want a pair of fitness earbuds. The ATH-SPORT7TW are IPX5 certified for sweat resistance, and they’ve also got a hear-through audio mode so you can remain aware of your surroundings when running outside.
To ensure they stay firmly in your ears, Audio Technic is using “ergonomically-designed Freebit earfins for maximum stability and comfort during intense sessions.” Battery life on these is just 3.5 hours, but the carrying case holds enough juice for 16 hours worth of refills. Despite their sporty branding, the ATH-SPORT7TW don’t come in any flashy colors. Just black or gray, like the other buds. They’ll retail for £179 / €199.
Audio Technica is also announcing the new, long-lasting ATH-SR30BT (£99 / €99) and noise-reducing ATH-SR50BT (£179 /€199) on-ear Bluetooth headphones at IFA. Both include Bluetooth 5.0. The company claims the ATH-SR30BT can last for up to 70 hours on a single charge, which is pretty wild. The ATH-SR50BT promise a more typical 28 hours, but with the added benefit of a noise reduction mode. Both wireless headphones will launch in the fall.
And last, Audio Technica is launching “the next generation ATH-MSR7b model of its landmark, high-resolution headphones,” which is 53 grams lighter than the previous model “with no compromise in quality.” You’ll want a high-end digital audio player to get the most from the 45mm drivers in these headphones. Like everything else revealed by the company at IFA 2018, the ATH-MSR7b will be available in fall, priced at £219 / €249.