Audio-Technica ATH-CM3 Earphones | iLounge

Reviews

1

so is the only part of the earbuds that it colored (to match the minis) right by the buds (as in the photo) or is there more to it?

Posted by hobbes on April 8, 2005 at 12:21 PM (PDT)

2

It looks like it. I think they would've provided more pictures if it had more to it

Posted by red.ranger in Texas on April 8, 2005 at 1:01 PM (PDT)

3

Prett expensive for a pair of simple headphones...

Posted by Anton J in Pennsylvania on April 8, 2005 at 1:36 PM (PDT)

4

A-T is still around? I used to use some of their phono cartridges back when I couldn't afford the more expensive and nicer units from other manufacturers (a LONG time ago), but headphones? Back then, I thought their cans sucked...maybe a lot has happened since in the 25 years since they fell of MY radar screen.

Posted by flatline response on April 9, 2005 at 10:33 AM (PDT)

5

A-T make some of the very best headphones there are actually. The ATH-A900 full size (as in *huge*) headphones for example are absolutely amazing and loved by many audiophiles. And in contrast to for example Sennheiser's high end headphones they sound great plugged straight into the IPod.

Posted by guppi on April 9, 2005 at 3:29 PM (PDT)

6

Wow, these are really neat. If I had an iPod mini, I would definately consider purchasing these.

Posted by Pghmyn on April 9, 2005 at 8:19 PM (PDT)

7

Guppi: Loved by many "audiophiles"? Apparently not in the circle of fanatics I associate with. I won't get into a shouting match about headphones vs. speakers (the REAL audiophile's choice, btw...sorry, couldn't resist; just HAD to get that in), but most hi-fi and audio gearheads I know, discuss and argue with who do appreciate great fullsized cans gravitate towards Senns, AKG, Beyerdynamic, with a soft spot if not outright fanaticism towards Grado and certain $ony units. There are others they've owned and sworn by, but none of these idiots ever mention using A-Ts these days. Way back when I often thought A-T's sound were often too colored and unnatural for my tastes, though I suppose I could understand how people 25 years ago COULD'VE like them.

As for me nowadays, I'm generally stuck on Senns for my diet of fullsized cans. I'm pleased as punch with my HD650/Equinox combo, though I enjoyed the HD600 with the Equinox leads as well; shame I had to go and spoil that love affair by auditioning the HD650s. As for the portable realm, I'm pretty happy with the ER-4p set, but still trying to convince myself about a set of Sensaphonics as THE small form factor unit to own.

But back-on-topic; if A-Ts are indeed good sonically, then it's a happier world that A-T is back on someone's radar screen, even if it ain't mine.

Posted by flatline response on April 10, 2005 at 12:51 AM (PDT)

8

flatline: Well, I was talking about headphone audiophiles, not the speaker guys. Head over to head-fi.org (where the headphone audiophiles hang) and search for the A900 and you will find lots of rave reviews. Several people for example prefer them over the way pricier Sony CD 3000. Of course there are also people who think they really suck. But I think the general averaged agreement would be that they are the best headphones in that pricerange (200 US) for a wide range of music. Grados are better for rock, Sennheiser better for classical. The HD650/Equinox is in a different league still of course.
Also, the A-T are one of the very few full size headphones that dont require a special headphone amp (the high end Senns definitely do).

Posted by guppi on April 10, 2005 at 1:20 AM (PDT)

9

I actually have these earphones. I bought them about a month ago, and I've used them long enough for them to be burned in (whether or not that's effective is for another discussion).

First impressions. These earbuds are big. The bud portions including sticks are twice as long as the stock earbuds. They also look really nice with the metallic finish (I have the silver version). They're substantially heavier than the stocks, and don't have a cheap plasticky feel to them.

I've compared them with the stock earbuds using music like Patricia Barber's Companion, Sasha Lazard's The Myth of Red, Bid Bud's Infinity + Infinity, Massive Attack's Mezzanine and Sarah Brightman's Eden.

All music was played through the 4G 20 gig iPod and ripped with LAME VBR-128. It's very true that the mids and highs are way more defined than what you get from the stock earbuds. Likewise, the soundstage is a lot larger and more defined. However, there is a lot less bass even when I put on foam tips. The stocks put out a lot more bass than the CM3 for music like trance, R&B, and all other bass heavy music. However, for balanced music like jazz and classical with a lot of instruments across the entire spectrum and that are also very complex, the CM3's absolutely destroy the stocks. So, depending on what sort of music you listen to, these earphones may or may not be for you.

That said, these earphones are meant only for listening either while stationary or walking at a normal pace. They are NOT meant for use during moderate to intense workouts. The splitting point for the L / R wires is halfway between the stocks and comparable Sony earbuds, which means they're in a suboptimal location (Sony's got it right). IF you have the the right wire in front, it dangles at a strange angle, and if it's behind the neck, the right wire is too short and the weight of the cord (see following sentence) will drag it down and pull at the earbud. The cord is a lot heavier, and unless you're using a remote or armband so you don't need the extension cord, the excess weight and repetition of movement is going to eventually tug on and actually yank the buds right out of your ears. I dunno, maybe I have smaller than average ear canals, but I doubt it. I don't have either a remote or armband, so maybe either would obviate this problem.

As for iPodlounge's comments that they don't isolate outside sounds, well duh. Unless you're wearing canal earphones or earphones with active noise cancellation, no normal earphones are going to isolate outside sounds.

That's my 2 cents worth. I use my stock earbuds during workouts, and my CM3's while stationary where I can appreciate the quality of the music. I just can't fathom the thought of using canal earphones and sticking something deep into my ears. That said, I'm sure Shure's and Etymotics sound better than the CM3's, but then you're spending a minimum of $99 US for them. Of course, from what I've heard, the ATM-CM7Ti's (high end version of the AT stick earbuds) beat anything short of the Etymotic ER-4p's, and can even compare with them for $149 US. A little too rich for my blood though.

Posted by acidreign on April 10, 2005 at 5:14 AM (PDT)

10

One reason I bought the ER-6i headphones is that they'[re comfortable in my ears due to the soft texture of their silicon. I've never found a single other make (except the few other decent quality earphones) which are comfortable in my ears.


Those things look like they would hurt like the dickkens an d most likely not even stay in my ears, must like the freebie Apple buds the el cheapo ones they sell for $30. Anyone else who has sensitive ears should consider a design which features soft silicon and not things made of the materials or which look like these things.

Posted by glockster in U.S. on April 10, 2005 at 1:17 PM (PDT)

11

I have always been a fan of the soft-silicone style isolating earbuds (as far as earbuds go)...I have had a pair of $ony's that have a great range, very isolating, quite comfortable, and the wiring has survived without losing its connection with the jack, (a big problem with my headphones as they get kind of rouged up sometimes...especially if they are so comfortable you forget you're wearing them and stand up to get a drink...). The con about these (and earbuds in general) is that they tend to come out of your ears too easily (unless custom fit), and the rubber cups that come with them can tend to fall off easily too. I had been looking for a good comfortable, secure, isolating, good looking and nice sounding pair of headphones for a while...I lean towards the wraparound the back of the head style, not with the circle-style speakers, but with the silicons-earbud style tips. They stay securely on the head or around the neck, look good, & you can get ones that sound decent, of course. The ones that clamp onto each ear are brutally uncomfortable after about 10 minutes....some wraparounds are uncomfortable to the upper ear/head after a while too, so find a design that suits you...i found a pair of jWINs in Chinatown that i haggled down to $6 (ok they were only $10 originally, but still), and they are the most comfortable that i have had. The sound isn't as dynamic as my sony's, but since I lost one of the rubber caps I use with them...
See the jWIN model I have here: (only mine is white smile )
http://jwin.com/sites/prodDetail.asp?Pidx=81&cateL=39&cat_P=6

Posted by renofett on April 10, 2005 at 3:29 PM (PDT)

12

are these earbuds better in bass than the stock apple earbuds???

Posted by applefrk@hotmail.com on April 17, 2005 at 7:24 AM (PDT)

13

"And bass response is different from the heavy, overbearing bass some people prefer: different bass notes are better defined instead of sounding like similar muddy bumps. There’s no doubt that bass heads won’t be thrilled by comparison with phones like the Sony MDR-EX71s, but others - particularly those who appreciate a bit of detail - will like the sound."

Shall we read the actual review before posting a question? wink

Posted by renofett on April 17, 2005 at 8:36 PM (PDT)

14

renofett,

I am sorry i even asked about the bass!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Posted by applefrk@hotmail.com on April 18, 2005 at 2:52 PM (PDT)

15

Hi guy, check this out
http://www.warehouse123.com/ProductInfo.php?pid=AUTATHCK5-BLK

Audio Technica releases the ATH-CK5 Inner Ear Headphone lately, and it's going to be another great ipod matching product from A-T. Anyone ordered it already?

Posted by iloveracing on June 23, 2005 at 7:49 AM (PDT)

16

thanks for the heads up iloveracing!!!!

Posted by applefrk@hotmail.com on June 23, 2005 at 8:24 AM (PDT)

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