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Audio-Technica ATH-AD700X review: Great sound, strange fit

Those who want a wide soundstage and an open, neutral sound to their music know that open-back headphones are the way to go. Audiophiles love them for a reason — they lend a beautiful sound for your music to truly shine and make it feel like you’re at a concert, but from the comfort of your home or studio.



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The Audio-Technica ATH-AD700X is a pair of open-back headphones, and I got to try them out and see how they sound. I spent over a week using them daily to see how they fare, and whether they’re worth it for the audiophiles out there.

ATH-AD700X product image

Audio-Technica ATH-AD700X

$119 $200 Save $81

These open-back headphones have a lovely sound, wide soundstage, and look cool too. The headband isn’t adjustable, so they may not fit every head.

Pros

  • Amazing sound
  • Wide soundstage
  • Lightweight
  • Looks great
Cons

  • Doesn’t fit very well
  • Cable isn’t detachable


Price, availability, and specs

Audio-Technica ATH-AD700X

Wireless?
No

Brand
Audio-Technica

Sensitivity
100 dB/mW

Frequency Response
5-30,000 Hz

Connection Type
3.5mm

Impedance
38 ohms

Weight
265g

Noise Cancellation
No

Foldable
No

Connectivity
Wired

Waterproof
No

Driver size
53mm

Cable length
3m

You can buy the Audio-Technica ATH-AD700X directly from Audio-Technica, as well as on Amazon. The open-back headphones cost $200 USD, and come in just one colorway, black.

The ATH-AD700X weighs just 265 grams, making it fairly lightweight and comfortable to wear for long periods of time. It comes with a 3-meter cable with a gold-plated 3.5mm connector, and it also comes with a detachable 1/4 inch adapter.


These dynamic open-back headphones feature 53mm drivers inside, making these headphones get very loud very easily. The open-back nature of these headphones means that people will be able to hear what you’re listening to if you’re listening to it loud enough, so make sure to use these in a place where you won’t be bothering anybody.

What I liked

Fantastic sound and wide soundstage

The Audio-Technica ATH-AD700X resting on a midi keyboard

First, the aesthetics of these headphones are really unique. The metal honey-comb pattern on the ear cups looks really cool, and the headband design is interesting to say the least, though I’ll get more into the comfort of that later. The foam ear pads are really comfortable and soft, and the covering is very soft. The ear pads don’t press on my ears too hard when I’m wearing glasses, which makes them good for longer-term wear.


The openness of these open-back headphones lends a very “airy” quality to any music you listen to through the ATH-AD700X.

The sound quality of the ATH-AD700X is lovely. These headphones have a very neutral frequency response, which is great for anyone who wants to hear songs the way they were intended when recorded. I will note that the bass is fairly quiet because of the open-back design of the headphones, and the mids do sound a bit boosted, but not too much. The openness of these open-back headphones lends a very “airy” quality to any music you listen to through the ATH-AD700X.


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To get the best sound from these headphones, you’ll have to use them in a quiet, more controlled environment. Being open-back, the ATH-AD700X doesn’t have much in the way of isolation, because that’s not the point of open-back headphones. So to hear your music well enough and be free of distractions, these headphones are best used indoors in a quiet setting.

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What I didn’t like

They just don’t fit right

The author fitting the Audio-Technica ATH-AD700X on her head

The aforementioned interesting design of the headband has a caveat: it’s not adjustable, and relies on what Audio-Technica calls “self-adjusting 3D wing support” to fit the headphones to your head. This didn’t work out well for me. I have a smaller head, so I found the headphones didn’t quite sit right on me, and were hardly hanging on, mostly supported by my ears. So, for me personally, the ATH-AD700X just couldn’t fit my head properly, and this problem would probably happen to anyone who has a smaller or more narrow head.


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I also don’t love that the cable isn’t detachable. This means that if I wanted to use a smaller cable, I simply don’t have that choice. Additionally, if the cable breaks, you won’t be able to easily replace it, and you’ll have to either send it in for repair or buy a new pair of headphones.

Should you buy the Audio-Technica ATH-AD700X?

The Audio-Technica ATH-AD700X resting on a wooden table.

Anyone who is looking for a pair of open-back headphones might want to consider the Audio-Technica ATH-AD700X. It’s a super solid pair of headphones, the soundstage is wide, and the sound quality is fantastic. The biggest caveat to me is the way they sit on my head, so anyone with a relatively small head should at least try on these headphones before buying them.


These headphones are for people who want to listen to music in a quiet environment and be fully immersed in sound.

These headphones are definitely not for people who want to wear their headphones when they’re out and about, on public transit, in the office, or any other public place. People will hear what you’re listening to, and you will hear everything around you. Ultimately, these headphones are for people who want to listen to music in a quiet environment and be fully immersed in sound. The ATH-AD700X are also not for people who love bass — you’ll get a very neutral sound with these cans.

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