Audio-Technica’s latest in-ear sets, just like their big over-ear brothers ATH-DSR7BT and ATH-DSR9BT , feature in-house “Pure Digital” technology, where the final conversion of the digital Bluetooth audio stream into electrical vibrations takes place directly on the membrane.
With the DSR5BT, Audio-Technica continues their new generation of wireless headphones, all of which can only be controlled digitally (via Bluetooth) as they no longer have an analogue input. Although invisible, but still pointing the way to the future, is support for Qualcomm’s high-resolution audio codecs, which can also handle 24-bit/48 kHz data transfer rates. Also invisible is the D/A converter, which is integrated directly into the drivers. And, of course, you could even say this headset also has a built-in speakerphone, since the player is likely to be a mobile phone in most cases.
According to the technical data sheet, the DSR5BT generates frequencies in the range of 5 Hz to 45 kHz. The impedance is 10 Ohms, which is nothing to worry about since the amplification is done in the headphones and not in the player. However, this is a small advantage for the manufacturer because they can, of course, tune the amplifier exactly to the driver used. In the case of the DSR5BT, there are two: one at 9.8 and one at 8.8 millimetres in diameter.
The design of the handset is really unusual: the media control, Bluetooth receiver, display, rechargeable battery and microphone are housed in a slender choker, at the ends of which the actual in-ear headphones are connected with short cables. On the left side sits the media/phone control (functions: forward/back/pause, volume up/down, answer), and on the right side, the power slider and a battery/charging indicator with three LED segments. The choker has the dimensions of a very slim headband and is covered with a rubber coating in the neck area. It wears relatively easily and comfortably and does not push. Of course, this depends largely on the neck width of the wearer. But no matter how tight or loose the hoop sits at the end, you always have the feeling of having something around your neck—that may be a clear disadvantage of this design for some people. To their credit, however, all controls, due to the generous dimensions, have plenty of space and are designed accordingly, which makes the operation very pleasant and “accurate.”
Let’s make it short: The DSR5BT sounds great. Not only because of its 5 to 45 kHz ranging frequency response, because this is known to be only a technical condition. No; it’s the wonderfully balanced tuning in the overall tonal weighting that makes listening with this in-ear so satisfying. It hits the right balance between crispy heights, punchy mids and neatly shifting basses. Nothing beats into the foreground and yet everything is “there”; to achieve this balance is the high art of the sound transducer design and Audio-Technica have done everything right audibly. That makes up for the quite costly price tag. On the other hand, there is only a satisfactory transmission quality of the integrated microphone, which clearly requires less height at the remote station than the integrated microphone of our test device (Samsung S9).
The Audio-Technica DSR5BT sounds really good because it always remains beautifully balanced. The operation of the buttons on the neck is relatively comfortable. For people who do not like tiny, integrated-into-the-cable buttons, but instead prefer clear and easy-to-use buttons, the design should be quite pleasing.
- Ear couplingIn-ear
- Transducer principledynamic
- Frequency response (headphones)5 - 45.000 Hz
- Impedance10 ohms
- Sound pressure level (SPL)102 dB
- Weight with cable63 g
What's in the box
- 4 pairs of ear tips (XS, S, M, L)
- USB charging cable (30cm)
- Carrying pouch
- BT version: 4.2
- BT profiles: A2DP, AVRCP, HFP, HSP
- BT codecs: aptX HD, aptX, AAC, SBC
- Battery: up to 8 hours playing time (500 hours standby); charging time 3 hours