updated 01:55 pm EDT, Wed July 8, 2009
Audio Technica ANC7b
Audio-Technica grew its still-small noise-reduction headphone line today through the ATH-ANC7b, its main and only over-ear model in the category. It upgrades an earlier outgoing model with a purportedly more natural and richer sound. It continues to use an active cancellation process with dual microphones that pick up outside sound; the company believes about 85 percent of outside sound is eliminated before it reaches the listener's ears. Noise canceling demands batteries but can be turned off.
Reflecting an audiophile focus, Audio Technica gives the ANC7b a relatively broad 10Hz to 25kHz frequency response and a 109dB signal-to-noise ratio. It also comes with airline and quarter-inch adapters to keep it working on planes and with full home theaters. Shipments start sometime in August and will have the headphones reach stores, including Apple's, for about $220.