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Headphones - Audio Technica ATH AD2000x


Our quest to find the best headphones continues, and today we review the AUDIO-TECHNICA ATH AD2000x.

For those of you who do not have a deep knowledge of the audio market, AUDIO TECHNICA is a major audio manufacturer. Even if it does not trust the first places in Europe, the firm is number 1 in a lot of areas, sometimes before a few very famous brands such as SENNHEISER for exemple.
The story of AUDIO TECHNICA started in 1962 when Hideo MATSUSHITA created AUDIO TECHNICA in Japan in Tokyo. The firm issued the AT-1 and AT-3 MM moving magnet cartridges on the market.
Nowdays (2014), the company is approximately 50 years old and is still specialized in the cartridges, headphones, vinyl and microphones.
As usual, we have kept the same testing configuration in order to give you a stable point of comparison along the time. We have nevertheless slightly improve it by changing the DAC: it is therefore a FOSTEX HPA-8C which more capable to feed the high end headphones requiring a lot of energy to deliver their best. By the way, the FOSTEX HPA-8C will be reviewed in the near future on Threshold Lovers.

The headphones are packed in a low cost packaging, prbably requiring a PHD degree to be able to close it again after it has been opened ... Mr AudioTechnica, how many hours of engineering have you spent to achieve a such complex and unusable packaging ??...

Here is a photo of the headphones:

The photo herebelow shows the top of the headphones, with a particular form factor, but it has proved to be efficient:


Type Hi-Fi / Cable connect
Frequency response 5 Hz to 45 kHz
Cable length 3 meters
Impedance 40 ohm
Sensitivity 103 dB
Connector(s) Jack, 6.35mm and 3.5mm
Weigth 265 grams

The review of these headphones has of course be performed with the same protocol than the one we have used for the previously reviewed headphones: AKG K-701, GRADO SR-125i, GRADO PS1000 and SONY MCD C3000, etc....

The external perceived quality, based on the look and feel, is in the average: it could be acceptable if its price in France was also in the average. But its price tag in France is around 1.000€ (!) and it is therefore not acceptable. At this price level, Audio Technica must offer someting with a better look and feel.

The comfort when the headphones are on the head is also in the average, and requires a bit of experience to cope with the particular form factor. They are nice from a look point of view, but we are not fan of them... Maybe AudioTechnica should care more about the engineers recommandations and care less about the Marketing ones.

The cable will not improve our overall first impression: it is not acceptable at 1.000€. AudioTechnica must quickly correct all these points , OR must change the price for a much lower one.


This review comes just after the FOSTEX TH-900 which will be issued in the short term on our website, so it is easy to identify the positive and negative points of these headphones...
It has of course be burned in prior any audition, because we all know that the burn in is often critical for an audio device.

The first impression that comes to the mind is that these headphones are very sweet on the entire audio spectrum: The size of the image is excellent, quite 3D. There is a lot of "meat around the bones", the hight frequencies are very analogic with no acidity at all. You can lesson to the music during a lot of hours without becoming tired: very pleasant.

But some other things are not as positive as these ones...

The bass frequencies are just in the average regarding their quality: not enough speed.

More genrally, the competitors are very serious in this price range around 1.000€, and most of the time they are based on a serious engineering and designed to offer high end audio qualities. The AudioTechnica ATH-2000x cannot compete with them : it is simply overpriced in Europe regarding its qualities...

In Japan, its price tag is around 400€ and therefore more coherent with its quality. Audio Technica must align the price in Europe with the price in Japan: if not, we do not see how this nice headphone can find a place on the market...

Pros :
  • Performs well on every type of music
  • Excellent openess
  • No acidity at all
  • Very good high frequencies
  • Light, it can be used during a lot of hours

Cons :
  • Look and feel in the average only, not acceptable at 1.000€
  • Requires a high power amp to deliver its best
  • Price is just crazy in France (1.000€) and must be immediately aligned to the Japan price (400€): the current price is not justified.
  • Form factor...
  • Not enough punch, particularly in the bass

This review has been written by Florent - September 2014.

Creation date : 08/04/2014 @ 18:31
Last update : 22/09/2014 @ 20:52
Category : Headphones
Page read 1052 times

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