ATH-ESW9A

Portable Wooden Headphones

MSRP* US$369.95
Two-Year Limited End-User Warranty

*Manufacturer's Suggested Retail Price. Actual selling price may vary; please check with an authorized Audio-Technica dealer.

  • on ear headphones


  • Overview
  • Features
  • Specifications
  • Reviews
  • Q & A

  • Overview

    Wooden housings made of African Padauk not only look great—they contribute to the superior acoustic reproduction that these beautiful headphones offer. Audio-Technica’s specially designed 42 mm neodymium drivers project powerfully. Luxurious earpads deliver long-wearing comfort. The headphones fold flat for compact storage.
  • Features

    • Wooden housings made of African Padauk for superior acoustic reproduction

    • Specially designed 42 mm drivers deliver outstanding audio

    • Soft leather earpads for a luxurious, extra-comfortable listening experience

    • Headphones fold flat for compact portability

    • Includes protective pouch
  • Specifications

    TypeDynamic
    Driver Diameter42 mm
    Frequency Response5 - 35,000 Hz
    Maximum Input Power1000 mW
    Sensitivity103 dB/mW
    Impedance42 ohms
    Weight170 g (6.0 oz) without cable
    Cable1.2 m (4 ft), single, OFC
    Connector3.5 mm (1/8") mini stereo, gold-plated
    Accessory IncludedPouch



    Conditions
  • Reviews

    REVIEW SNAPSHOT®

    by PowerReviews
    Audio-TechnicaATH-ESW9A Portable Wooden Headphones
     
    4.7

    (based on 3 reviews)

    Ratings Distribution

    • 5 Stars

       

      (2)

    • 4 Stars

       

      (1)

    • 3 Stars

       

      (0)

    • 2 Stars

       

      (0)

    • 1 Stars

       

      (0)

    Pros

    No Pros

    Cons

    No Cons

    Best Uses

    No Best Uses
      • Reliability:
      •  
      • Audio Quality:
      •  
      • Durability:
      •  
      • Ease of Use:
      •  

    Reviewed by 3 customers

    Sort by

    Displaying reviews 1-3

    Back to top

     
    4.0

    Addictive Sound Signature with Questionable Durability

    By 

    from Minnesota

    Site Member

    Pros

    • addictive sound signature
    • very pretty to look at

    Cons

    • cable seems a bit thin
    • very little accessories

    Best Uses

      Comments about Audio-Technica ATH-ESW9A Portable Wooden Headphones:

      I don't have much to say about myself except that I love headphones and am not an audiophile, and so I'll get right to the review.

      Accessories:
      Very minimal, comes with just a soft pouch to protect scratches. I would've like to see at least a hard-shell case. especially the given price-point.

      Build/Design:
      The wooden earcups are quite a beauty and along with the low profile, it is a winner in my book. Though I can't say the same about the build. I have used these for about 8 months now and though no major issues have occurred yet, there is a bit of creaking when twisting the earcups to fold flat. The cable also seems to very thin, which at first I thought them to be practical because almost no cable noise occurred, but after getting them caught on a few things, it worries me.

      Isolation/Fit:
      It fits my big head quite nicely. The top of the headband is very plush and easy on the head. The earpads however hurt my ears after about 30 minutes of listening; this can be easily fixed by twisting the earcups a bit outwards but also lets in more noise. Going onto isolation, the isolation is decent at higher volumes. These will not totally block out noise if you're in a busy commute, but for those who want to hear their surroundings might find this nice.

      Sound:
      If I had to describe a picture for the sound, it would be like laying on a couch with a blanket and sitting by the fireplace in the winter. I don't know how someone else might take that but the sound was very unique and excellent to my ears.
      The bass is warm with a nice body and punch to them.
      The mids stand out a little more but rarely ever gets harsh. It's very addictive and lush. Some say that it sounds "creamy" though I don't really know what that means.
      The treble is slightly behind all of the action, though it never sounded very congested or narrow in soundstage. So, the headphones are not harsh in the treble region. Perfect for those who are sensitive to sibilance.

      Overall:
      I really like these for its very addictive sound signature and for its low profile yet dashing looks. It gives off a very "gentleman" kind of look. I only wished it came with possibly extra earpads and maybe removable cables.

      • How long have you used this product?:
      • Up to a year
      • Reliability:
      •  
      • Audio Quality:
      •  
      • Durability:
      •  
      • Ease of Use:
      •  

      (2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

       
      5.0

      Portable Luxury

      By 

      from Maine

      Site Member

      Pros

      • Casual Listening
      • Office
      • Travel

      Cons

        Best Uses

          Comments about Audio-Technica ATH-ESW9A Portable Wooden Headphones:

          If other headphones were kinds of jackets, these headphones would be the silky red smoking jacket worn by a man who has many leather bound books and whose house smells like rich mahogany.

          The ESW9A's are portable headphones in a class by itself. These are my go to portable headphones if I am anywhere but home. Comfortable, beautiful, and with audiophile grade audio, it's honestly no contest.

          These headphones have traveled all over the country with me, on buses and planes. They conveniently fold flat and come with a soft carrying case. I keep mine in Audiotechnica's AT-HPP5 hard case.

          Just like the dark wooden cups and leather pads, they have a engaging dark silky smooth sound, very different than Audiotechnica's usual sound which is more favorable to female vocals and classical music. Everything, including the bass is very full and engaging.

          Because of this, the ESW9A's are wonderful for almost any genre of music you can throw at it. Some Auditechnica headphones are best suited for a few genre's of music but these are one of the exceptions. Modern rock and punk, rap and hip hop, even electric music sounds great. If you're looking for even heavier bass though, these classy cans wouldn't be for you- I'd check out the Audiotechnica's M50's or even the PRO700MK2's if the bass on the M50's weren't enough for you.

          As any classy piece of equipment as this, one has to be careful not to scratch the wooden cups- they're somewhat glossy and are prone to scratches. The cable is also quite thin and not shielded and should be watched after carefully. If you're clumsy or rough on your equipment there are other Audiotechnica headphones that you may pair better with.

          At one point, I absentmindedly broke my cable and the professionals at Audio Technica were very friendly and easy to work with and I had my headphones back no worse for wear before I knew it.

          • What best describes the environment the product was used in?:
          • Travel
          • What best describes your level of audio knowledge?:
          • Audiophile
          • How long have you used this product?:
          • Over a year
          • Reliability:
          •  
          • Audio Quality:
          •  
          • Durability:
          •  
          • Ease of Use:
          •  
           
          5.0

          Beatiful in looks and function

          By 

          from Undisclosed

          Site Member

          Pros

          • aesthetics
          • Casual Listening
          • Office

          Cons

            Best Uses

              Comments about Audio-Technica ATH-ESW9A Portable Wooden Headphones:

              I will admit, I was a sucker for these when I first saw them way back when... I mean, wood, portable? I was ready to buy them without even trying them or reading reviews. Luckily my patience in holding off, due to being a poor college student, paid off. I got to go to Tokyo, and while there, got to give these guys a test run. I was sold.

              They are beautiful to look at, the leather and wood work so well together.

              Everything about the sound of these, I love. I am coming from using the AKG K701s and AD700s for home listening and the Etymotic ER4Ps for everything else. I decided these would be the in between when I don't want to use any of those. So, these sit in my laptop bag so I can use them at home then again at work.

              The bass on these are nice and sweat, something I wasn't ready for, coming from the headphones previously listed. Unfortunately, the bass is not without fault, though. These handle 90% of the music I listen to well, but when it comes to some of them metal (any song by Black Witchery or Blasphemy are not going to go well on these, and probably 99% of the other headphones out there)I listen to, the bass is just to "slow" and sort of muddle together. But give it a nice Opeth song like "Face of Melinda" or Tiesto's "Elements of Life" and these shine beautifully.

              The treble on these are nice change of pace from my other headphones, they're not as pronounced but they're not too subdued, either. The mid levels, feel perfect something like Mazzy Star's "Into Dust" or Sunn o)))/Boris' "Sinking Belle" sound amazing coming through these.

              All in all, I would recommend these to someone looking for beautiful headphones that also sound great.

              • What best describes the environment the product was used in?:
              • Office
              • What best describes your level of audio knowledge?:
              • Intermediate
              • How long have you used this product?:
              • Up to a year
              • Reliability:
              •  
              • Audio Quality:
              •  
              • Durability:
              •  
              • Ease of Use:
              •  

              Displaying reviews 1-3

              Back to top

            • Q & A

              Do you have questions about this product?

              Get answers from real customers and in-house experts with AnswerBox.

              6 Questions | 8 Answers
              Displaying questions 1-6
              • Q:

                ATH-ESW9 Pads

                Is there a chance to buy ear pads for ATH-ESW9?
                My headphones are about 4-5 years old and pads really need to be replaced.

                Thank you,

                Vasily
                Asked on 5/2/2015 by Lisovskiy from Vancouver, BC, Canada

                1 answer

                • A:

                  Please contact our Parts Department at (330) 686-2600 ext 5002 or at Parts@atus.com to inquire about replacement earpads.

                  Answered on 5/4/2015 by AudioSolutionsSpec3
              • Q:

                Are there removable cabling options that won't void my warranty?

                I just bought a pair of these. They're absolutely wonderful!
                Asked on 3/6/2014 by CJmac from California, USA

                1 answer

                • A:

                  Unfortunately, there isn’t any way to modify the ATH-ESW9a cable without voiding the warranty; the warranty will indeed be voided if the product is modified.

                  Thanks!

                  Answered on 3/10/2014 by AudioSolutionsSpec2 from Stow, OH
              • Q:

                Where is this made?
                Asked on 12/2/2013 by Kennie

                2 answers

                • A:

                  Must be made in Japan. At least mine was.

                  Answered on 3/22/2015 by elKARPik from Odessa, Odessa Oblast, Ukraine
                • A:

                  Thank you for your inquiry. These are made in Japan.

                  Answered on 12/3/2013 by AudioSolutionsManager from Stow, OH
              • Q:

                What are the Specs?
                Asked on 11/25/2013 by cheebu from United States

                1 answer

                • A:

                  Thank you for your inquiry. Please note the specs are listed on our web site, but I have included them below.

                  Type Dynamic
                  Driver Diameter 42 mm
                  Frequency Response 5 - 35,000 Hz
                  Maximum Input Power 1000 mW
                  Sensitivity 103 dB/mW
                  Impedance 42 ohms
                  Weight 170 g (6.0 oz) without cable
                  Cable 1.2 m (4 ft), single, OFC
                  Connector 3.5 mm (1/8") mini stereo, gold-plated
                  Accessory Included Pouch

                  Answered on 12/3/2013 by AudioSolutionsManager from Stow, OH
              • Q:

                How best to fix/replace broken headband

                I love these headphones, which I purchased thru Amazon on 7/31/2011. I'm a heads-down coder, so I wear them about 5 hours a day.

                A few days ago, I went to slide the right phone off my ear and the headband snapped, right where the swivel is exposed. What is the proper strategy for getting myself listening to these phones again? Warranty? Replacement part? Epoxy?

                Thanks,
                Rick
                Asked on 8/31/2012 by rickg from Alabama

                1 answer

                • A:

                  Thank you for your inquiry. Please contact our service department at 330-686-2600 option 4. They can help with this.

                  Answered on 9/12/2012 by AudioSolutionsManager from Stow, OH
              • Q:

                ATH-ESW9A closed or open?

                Is this a noise-isolating headphones or is it open-back design?
                Asked on 10/19/2011 by domdab from las vegas

                2 answers

                • A:

                  The back of these headphones are wooden cups, and beautiful ones at that, so they are closed back.

                  This isolates noise to a degree, but these sit on the ear, rather than circumaural, so there is passive noise cancellation but not a huge degree of it.

                  Generally the ESW9A's are good for airplanes and those kind of environment but any noisier than that and you may want to look into a close back circumaural solution or actual active noise cancelling headphones which AT also markets.

                  Answered on 10/22/2011 by Butler from Maine
                • A:

                  Thank you for your inquiry. These are closed back headphones, so they do provide some level of "passive" noise isolation, although we do not provide a spec for that.

                  Answered on 10/20/2011 by AudioSolutionsManager from Stow, OH
              Displaying questions 1-6

              Do you have a question about this product?