I’ve come to count on sure issues from Audio-Technica earbuds and headphones. First, the corporate’s sound is heat, soothing, and straightforward to hearken to for hours.Often good, however not essentially nice, though the corporate typically pairs this with a strong general expertise because of options and efficiency. It is all there: wi-fi headphones with lively noise cancellation (ANC) and a number of useful instruments that rival dearer rivals. Some options are higher than others, however the firm has carried out an excellent job of increasing its capabilities through the years, though the ATH-TWX7 is lacking one important function.
Regardless of their stick-like look, the ATH-TWX7 look extra refined than most earbuds on this value vary. Audio-Technica selected a mixture of black and silver (or white/silver or grey/silver) colours to make the earbuds look just like high-end headphones. The principle housing could be very small, which suggests it is extra snug for my ears. The charging case additionally encompasses a distinctive teardrop form, which permits the earbuds to take a seat at an angle whereas charging, fairly than standing upright or utterly flat. There isn’t any actual profit right here, nevertheless it’s a departure from the norm value stating.
Audio-Technica did one thing uncommon amongst earbuds with the ATH-TWX7’s onboard controls. It makes use of each contact and bodily buttons for playback, calls, sound modes, and summoning the voice assistant. Usually you’d see this on headphones the place playback controls are touch-sensitive and noise cancellation and transparency mode are assigned to a button, however I do not recall seeing this on earbuds earlier than. Granted, I have been reviewing audio gear for years, so I am hesitant to assert Audio-Technica was “the primary” to take action.
That can assist you discover your supreme match, Audio-Technica provides two several types of ear suggestions. One is labeled “comfortable” and is designed to be extra snug, whereas the usual choice is designed to supply a safer match. I anticipated the “comfortable” model to be foam, or at the least partially foam, however they’re just about the identical. One is barely thinner, however they each seem like the identical silicone materials you see in most earbuds, and neither feels softer than the opposite.
The very last thing I wish to level out in regards to the ATH-TWX7’s design is its ingress safety (IP) score. These merchandise are solely IPX4 waterproof and can’t face up to spray or submersion. That is most likely sufficient for sports activities, and whereas it is about common for mid-range earbuds, barely dearer fashions transfer into IPX7 territory.
Software program and options
After I reviewed this headset in late 2019, Audio-Technica’s app was so restricted that there was no purpose to launch it. It would not provide something helpful until you put in a firmware replace, and even onboard management customization is restricted. I am completely happy to report that that is now not the case, as AT Join software program now provides a extra highly effective setup record and reconfigurable instruments than earlier than.
The app’s house display is devoted to offering choices for altering music codecs, EQ and sound modes, in addition to displaying the battery life of every earbud. Click on on the picture of the ATH-TWX7 to enter detailed settings, divided into audio and system sections. All of this comes customary with entry to every thing the onboard controls have to supply inside the app, together with the power to remap contact and bodily buttons as wanted. However regardless of letting you set an auto-off timer when there is no audio, the ATH-TWX7 do not mechanically pause once you take them out of your ears. This can be a huge omission in 2024, when practically each pair of wi-fi headphones will do that.
I’ll level out one thing very novel. First, with the Name Microphone setting, Audio-Technica goes a step additional with in-app calling testing so you possibly can hear your personal voice earlier than dialing. Along with this, there are options reminiscent of Nature mode for quiet places or Noise Canceling mode for robust winds or noisy environments. The latter just isn’t very authentic, however will nonetheless come in useful. You may deactivate contact controls and rely solely on the tiny bodily buttons on the earbuds. Considerably modern is the power to regulate the sensitivity of those panels, with the preset being medium, with high and low choices accessible if desired.
Accommodates each contact and bodily buttons, permitting you to numerous Or flexibility in methods to set these. Every thing on the ATH-TWX7 is reconfigurable, that means you possibly can transfer content material from buttons to the touch panel and vice versa, or add content material that is not already there by default. Along with playback, calls, voice assistant, and noise-canceling settings choices, you can even add calls, low-latency mode, and verify battery stage. Audio-Technica is not reinventing the wheel in relation to what these earbuds can do, however better customization offers you extra choices to delegate duties in a method that makes probably the most sense for you.
Sound high quality and noise cancellation
Almost each set of Audio-Technica earbuds and headphones I’ve examined have related sound signatures. It is a heat, inviting tone that is nice to hearken to for hours on finish, largely as a result of the dynamics aren’t exhausting. For higher or worse, the ATH-TWX7 is mainly the identical, with a number of exceptions.
The mellow acoustic type is superb, with crisp element on the drums and guitar including texture to tracks like Zach Bryan’s “Heavy Eyes” and Charles Wesley Godwin’s “Household Ties.” The ATH-TWX7 additionally performs nicely on jazz and synth-heavy pop, rock and instrumental tunes. Hip-hop is ok, too, however the headphones begin to battle with onerous rock, metallic, and extra chaotic, over-the-top music types. Higher Lovers’ 30 Below 13 continues to be the gritty, raucous hardcore I do know and love, however every thing sounds flat and fewer dynamic than different earbuds. sounds from this album in addition to different metallic alternatives reminiscent of Gojira’s fortitude It is extra compressed than different genres and has much less room to unfold out, particularly these guitars which are normally caught in your head.
Like many ANC earbuds, the ATH-TWX7’s lively noise cancellation works nicely with fixed noise, however not so nicely with issues like vocals. This mannequin simply dealt with the noise from my heating unit at my Las Vegas resort throughout CES, as did the white noise machines and followers at house. It isn’t Bose-level soundproofing, nevertheless it’s positively above common.
The sound high quality in listen-through or transparency modes can be fairly good. It has a pleasant, pure factor to it that is not compressed or muted like some opponents. Nonetheless, the ATH-TWX7 do not carry your voice the way in which the AirPods Professional do, so the general impact is not such as you’re not sporting earbuds in any respect. I assumed the Discuss-Via function would assist with this, however the device simply lowers the amount or mutes the content material. Confusingly, regardless of providing two choices for letting ambient sounds in, the device would not allow you to merely pause. It is simply listening, probably not conducive to a fast chat. Since your voice would not journey again to your ears, you may nonetheless really feel the necessity to communicate louder, which suggests you are extra more likely to yell in the event you’re not cautious.
name high quality
Helps Audio-Technica, the simplest approach to verify name efficiency on ATH-TWX7. With the in-app name check, you will discover out the way you sound earlier than you reply or place a name, which is a lot better than hoping the caller sounds good. I additionally discover it useful to judge which setting is finest for the place I’m on the time, even when I am at house.
Noise discount mode lives as much as its title, nevertheless it additionally sacrifices some voice high quality. Pure mode sounds finest, nevertheless it simply picks up background noise. In case you’re in a quiet place, although, the ATH-TWX7 can provide you above-average voice efficiency, with noticeably clearer than the standard hands-free name high quality most earbuds provide.
The ATH-TWX7 additionally appears to have a little bit of bother mechanically switching over multipoint Bluetooth, however solely throughout calls. If I leap from my cellphone to my laptop computer to hearken to music or different audio, the transition is fast and seamless. Nonetheless, if I am listening to music on my MacBook Professional and obtain a name, there are a number of instances when the headphones will not change to it. Since that is the scenario the place I am almost definitely to wish automated switching, that is disappointing. The most effective-case situation is that I reply the decision and click on to vary the audio from the iPhone to the ATH-TWX7, however that is probably not a perfect workflow.
Audio-Technica guarantees as much as 6.5 hours of use on the headphones themselves, with two extra fees within the charging case. It would not specify whether or not ANC is on or off, however in my checks I hit the acknowledged numbers whereas blocking out background noise. This can be a mixture of music and calls, with occasional minutes of listening mode, and having the ATH-TWX7 mechanically shut off twice. I used to be really in a position to work half-hour longer than the corporate claimed, and some further minutes is at all times an excellent factor.
Within the $200 value vary, the ATH-TWX7 is an apt comparability. Price mentioning on our record is that they’ve related battery life and the identical IPX4 score, however are extra snug to put on and have a few of Sony’s signature options. These embody help for DSEE Excessive upgrades and Fast Consideration mode, which makes it straightforward to have fast chats within the workplace, espresso store or airport. Moreover, LinkBuds S can mechanically pause once you communicate, and adaptive sound modes may be configured to vary settings based mostly on exercise or location. Plus, they’re promoting full value for $200.
iPhone customers will probably be extra happy with the ATH-TWX7. In case your life is intertwined with iOS, iPadOS, and macOS, the 2022 earbuds, presently on sale for below $200, are the most suitable choice. New options like Adaptive Audio convey automated changes to your day, and Apple’s adoption of Transparency Mode stays one of the best within the business. Lastly, they’re extra snug for longer intervals of time than the ATH-TWX7.
There’s quite a bit to love. A set of highly effective options brings numerous comfort to your life. However a few of these instruments nonetheless want some fine-tuning, and the dearth of automated suspension in 2024 is a headache. Nonetheless, the audio is generally good, if inconsistent at instances, and Transparency mode is healthier than most. Mixed with strong name high quality and in-app voice testing, the ATH-TWX7 is value contemplating, particularly at this value. Sadly, it falls in need of the extra full packages that some opponents provide for barely bigger investments.
This text initially appeared on Engadget: https://www.engadget.com/audio-technica-ath-twx7-review-good-earbuds-with-frustrating-flaws-160054450.html?src=rss