All new for this year, we were extremely excited to see Audio-Technica come out with a few new pairs of DJ headphones. Paired up with a new turntable and cartridge, it looks like they went full on DJ gear this year, considering there were no other releases from them at NAMM. Being able to use the Audio-Technica ATH-PRO5x at the convention was a privilege, so we decided to snap some pictures, write down our thoughts and compile this review for you to see what their new over-ear, closed-back DJ headphones can offer your current workflow. Not only does this thing have AT’s excellent build, but the sound quality and other few features we love for DJ’s is great considering the price-point of these.
Standouts of the ATH-PRO5x DJ Headphones
- Over-Ear headphones made for DJ’s
- 40 mm drivers
- Detachable cables
- 1,500 mW max input power
- Current available colors: Black and White
- Impedance: 34 ohms
- Sensitivity: 100 dB
- Weight: 8.8 oz (250 g) without cables\connector
Build of the Audio-Technica ATH-PRO5x
Albeit under $100 retail, the headphones come with a very sturdy build. In particular with the ear pads, they’re extremely soft (no, not leather, but still get the job done at this price) and won’t cause pain after long hours of DJ use. To us, any headphones that do cause pain after even 3-4 hours of use shouldn’t be considered buying — you’ll be fine here. In terms of the construction, it’s quite study (the headband is also padded and adjustable), albeit no stainless steel or anything here, it will last you quite a few years if you take proper care of them. The overall weight of the PRO5x is exactly 8.8 ounces without the cables or connector, which is definitely on the light side as compared to others. Unlike the PRO7x, these do not come with a case or carrying pouch, so be sure to keep them secure somewhere (loosely in a backpack won’t cut — we do recommend some type of harder protection).
Another huge standout in our opinion, and ss we had loved in many other Audio-Technica pairs of headphones, in particular their studio lines, we have the beloved detachable cables. The ATH-PRO5‘x box comes with two — the 1.2m to 3.0m coiled as well as a straight 1.2m cable — to give us some flexibility when it comes to preferred cable style. We interchange ours quite frequently depending on our mood or if we travel with these and perform at a gig. You can also use them for mere leisure use, such as music listening or watching shows or movies on your computer. It’ll be feasible for long distances in case you like to lay in bed or recline in your chair while you do so.
The PRO5x also have a locking mechanism for the cable so it doesn’t fall out on you easily, especially during a performance or gig. You’ll also be getting the 3.5mm (1/8″) stereo mini-plug as well as a useful screw-on adapter for 6.3 mm (1/4″) to be compatible with most music and DJ gear out there.
Sound of the ATH-PRO5x DJ headphones
We have a whopping 5 – 35,000 Hz frequency range, so there are zero complaints when it comes to attaining the entire spectrum of sound with these. This is a huge standout for us considering some headphones (even newer, more expensive pairs) sometimes start at 25 Hz and only end at 15 kHz, falling just short of what we feel is the standard (20 to 20 kHz). Your 40 mm drivers (yes, neodymium for those audiophile’s wondering) will handle a lot of power at their peak of 1,500 mW, although the impedance is 34 ohms, so headphone amps or interfaces in our DJ gear can possibly help here.
If you’re unaware of designs and types of headphones, the over-ear, closed-back dynamic of the ATH-PRO5x are going to be crucial for specific recording and performing uses since it provides optimal sound-isolation. For DJ’s, we would never recommend anything aside from over-ear or on-ear closed-back headphones. This is because it’s important to keep your sound INSIDE of your ears, as opposed some semi-open and open-back headphones giving some leeway for sound to leak out — we don’t want this especially for recording. Performing wise, it’ll be based on preference, but for us, we want the sound only to us, not to mention some isolation to drown out the crowd so we can hear our mixes.
Conclusion of the Audio-Technica ATH-PRO5x review
Since A-T never had some new releases in the DJ headphones game for a while, it looks like they’re continuing to broaden their horizons, and we’re glad they are. These aren’t necessarily “high-end” as compared to a few other favorites of ours in the DJ headphones world, but can get the job done for those DJ’s who need a simple pair of headphones that will give us the essentials needed for our particular DJ use. We are however slightly disappointed the earcups do not swivel; however, we’re fine with just sliding one of the earcups aside to get our mix going. We’ve talked to some DJ’s and many really don’t care about this feature in the headphones, while some think it’s crucial, so we’ll leave that conclusion up to you.
Our best DJ headphones guide may help give you a bit more of a picture when it comes to what’s actually out there. For example, these definitely won’t compare to a lot of higher-end Sennheiser, Denon or Beyer models, but that’s expected when it comes to price-point comparisons. Considering the Audio-Technica ATH-PRO5x are priced at $80 retail for now (double check the internet, it’ll start to go down slowly depending on where you look), we recommend these for both beginner DJ’s or those who want to keep it simple in the headphone aspect of their DJ equipment toolbox.
For a few more bucks (looks like $200 retail — double check sites for true pricing), their on-ear model give us another option in their DJ headphones line. Those have a different design if you prefer on-ear while you spin (slightly smaller earpads that rest on your ear as opposed to over, like these), as well some better quality when it comes to sound and their internal builds. Read our ATH-PRO7x review for more info there.