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Audio-Technica announces the world’s first streaming headphones

Audio-Technica has announced what it’s calling the “world’s first streaming headsets” at CES 2023.

Japanese audio specialist Audio-Technica is more commonly associated with serious audiophile headphones and turntables, so the news that it’s entering the world of live streaming is particularly interesting.

This new streaming focus takes the form of two headset variants, the ATH-M50xSTS StreamSet for those who prefer the classic 3.5mm analogue approach, and the ATH-M50xSTS-USB StreamSet for those who prefer the digital benefits of a direct USB-C connection.

The wired model comes with a permanently attached 2-metre cable with 3.5 mm headphone jack and XLR microphone connector for connection to an audio interface or mixer.

The wireless model gives you a 2-metre USB-A connection (plus a USB-A to USB-C adapter), as well as a high quality A/D converter with up to 24-bit/96 kHz sampling rate, and sidetone circuitry that lets you hear your own voice.

Both have been “specifically developed to address the needs of live-streaming content creators”. While they pack the same same 45mm large-aperture drivers as the classic Audio-Technica ATH-M50x, they also feature earpads that enhance audio quality and sound isolation, as well as mesh and leatherette earpads for breathability and comfort.

In other words, they’re designed to be worn for hours at a time, which should be ideal for those epic live streams.

Beyond this added comfort, the ATH-M50xSTS and ATH-M50xSTS-USB feature serious boom mics with a cardioid condenser capsule adopted from the brand’s 20 Series microphone designs. Audio-Technica is promising “a rich, studio-quality vocal presence without background noise and a consistent level of output.”

Another streamer-friendly feature is that this boom mic can be quickly muted by flipping it up out of the way.

Both models will be available to buy from the Audio-Technica website in February, with the ATH-M50xSTS costing £169 / €199 and the ATH-M50xSTS-USB setting you back £199 / €229 RRP.

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