354 of 361 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent noise isolation and cancelling - especially for bass response and clarity
Update 29 April 2012 - Still going strong on both ear buds and over ears. Also bought most of my family these - they make excellent gifts and encourage a more pleasant travel experience to come and visit :-) Lastly - the new iPad - excellent audio quality compared to my old iPod. Perfect travel companion to the 'phones.
Update 12/Dec/2010 - Still going strong...
Published on October 12, 2008 by Mark F. Bower
14 of 17 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Ordered $69 ANC3BK and got $48 ANC23BK
This review is a CAVEAT EMPTOR of FIREMALL the apparent seller in my case.
I lost my first set of AT ANC3BK earphones (hey if you found them in the Windamere Hotel in Darjeeling Christmas 2010 - they're mine!). Anyway, tried others came back to ANC3BK's. I love the earphones - really outstanding.
I ordered the $69 ANC3BK.
They sent me $48 ATH-ANC23. Bait...
Published on September 27, 2011 by pod shopper
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354 of 361 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent noise isolation and cancelling - especially for bass response and clarity,
This review is from: Audio-Technica ATH ANC3 NoiseCancel Earphone BK! (Electronics)Update 29 April 2012 - Still going strong on both ear buds and over ears. Also bought most of my family these - they make excellent gifts and encourage a more pleasant travel experience to come and visit :-) Lastly - the new iPad - excellent audio quality compared to my old iPod. Perfect travel companion to the 'phones.
Update 12/Dec/2010 - Still going strong after about 200K miles of travel :)
I bought these to use with my faithful iPod which is full of music extending from:
* House, Electro, Techno (minus, Trapez, Traum Records etc), requiring a decent and tight bass response and good crisp uppers for all those 808/909 kicks and bass lines and tight hi hats
* Classical to new and old Heavy Metal (Gustav Mahler to Iron Maiden :)
* Indie/rock/acoustic (e.g. The Eels, 1980's Ska bands, Punk)
* Abstract electronics (Venetian Snares, Luke Vibert, AFX, Mr 76 etc - lots of Warp records stuff)
I'm also a DJ and musician, so have experience with a wide variety of listening conditions, studio monitors, studio headphones, and my faithful Sony MDR-V700 cans when mixing vinyl techno/house. I'm also VERY careful with my ears and use custom fitted earpieces for sound management at gigs and shows.
I travel quite extensively so what I wanted was:
1. Earphones that are comfortable
2. Excellent noise suppression - block general noise - people coughing, babies crying, annoying people chatting whilst standing near your seat on the plane etc.
3. Excellent noise cancellation
4. Excellent dynamic range given the spectrum of my listening library
5. Not over the top pricing
6. Good enough to not need extra amplifier to get a decent dynamic range (like some of my Koss Studio Headphones)
7. No fatigue both physical and due to the characteristics of the drivers - too 'brittle' a high end and its over after 30 minutes - think cheap JBL monitors crushing the mids and highs into a distorted mush. I can't stand that. Since noise canceling is an acoustic process, it was important that this didn't mush up my choons :)
8. Sturdiness - nothing worse than a cable getting snared and having to "tie" it to get a proper contact. Nooooo !
I've had quite a few different pairs of noise canceling phones in the past - the very early Philips over the ear ones (both two recent models which i was quite happy with) being the ones I'd settled on and used for about 5 years due to value and meeting most of the above. However, since one of my two pairs plastic broke - they were about 5 years old and used heavily, and I was not too happy about the need to drive them quite hard from my 80G 5G iPod to get a decent level which also meant that it introduced a bit of distortion - the iPod amp isnt actually that great by the way - I decided to look at some other options including Sennheiser top of the range, Bose QC range, the current Philips as well as Etymotic and Shure passive noise canceling. I was prepared to invest in something decent up to $400.
Anyhow, after much research and trying a few out my conclusions were:
* the Bose models were nice, but hugely over the top in price given their performance - especially whilst they did well in noise canceling, this appeared to be at the expense of phase alignment and actually changing the EQ spectrum quite vividly. Sounds were good but it sounded like a kind of flattening effect across the mids which for my music which in the main tends to be somewhat "V" in EQ was a bit odd sounding. I just felt given the price it should have been much better.
* Sennheiser - excellent all round but could not help feeling way too expensive (and a bit bulky)
* The Philips models were the same as my old ones - still perfectly serviceable but still a little lacking and needing driving a little hard - but can be had for pretty low dollars
* The Audio Technica just stood way above the rest on the price/sound quality/value/curve. The downsides are slight and similar to all the others anyhow: Yes, as with ANY noise canceling headphones since we are dealing with an acoustic process by which sound waves of any reasonable magnitude arriving at the earpiece in the range say up to 1500 Hz (aircraft engine noise, train noise, most conversations) are rapidly inverted and "played" into the earpiece at a level to actively cancel out anything arriving at your eardrum - more or less - there are bound to be acoustic artifacts and changes in EQ spectrum/Phase and so on.
However the AT's were much nicer in this regard. Couple this with the nice rubber noise isolation buds (use the largest you can to block noise and have them slot nicely into your ear canal), pressing the "NC on" button is pure bliss. One thing I did note- if you connect them to nothing and use them, you will "hear" the noise canceling process - but this is eliminated when the music is created or if you are in even a slightly noisy environment (e.g. bar, cafe, restaurant, shop).
So, I actually ended up buying both the in-ear buds listed here since they are so compact and hugely effective for creating my own silent or music filled world on trains and planes, as well as the AT over the ear ones - ATH ANC7's. The latter are very comfortable if a little compact over the ear and have excellent performance also - and nice cabling - removable cable and a nice case that also happens to fit my ipod inside too.
Paid $99 for the in ear via one of amazons sellers, and $127 for the over the ear ones. That's TWO pairs of really excellent headphones for less than the Bose or Sennheisers which were getting into la la land on price.
So, I can get close to my Studio and DJ can performance out of these and its made my ipod and other music listening experiences (eg. plane's movie system) really quite pleasurable. I can also use them to sleep on a noise plane or train - so effective you have to watch to make sure you don't miss announcements like your stops. If push came to shove, I reckon I could easily use the over the ears for a bit of impromptu DJ'ing if I had to - they are really great in this regard as they work perfectly without being powered - unlike some others. So, both be used when batteries are dead too.
Hope this helps - just a happy customer of these nice cans.
99 of 101 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Meet my needs,
This review is from: Audio-Technica ATH ANC3 NoiseCancel Earphone BK! (Electronics)I travel constantly (40+ weeks/year) and have owned Sony over the ear noise canceling headphones for a couple of years. I finally quit carrying them with me due to limited space available in my computer bag, ear fatigue from the noise canceling, and feedback when you tried to lean your head against a pillow on a long flight (which isn't possible to do comfortably with the over the ear design anyway).
For a few weeks I used the ear buds from my Creative Zen and while they were convenient, the didn't fit well, so music quality was poor. I also missed having the active noise canceling and had to have the volume up pretty high to hear the music over everything.
I chose the Audio Technica ATH-ANC3 headphones before there were any reviews on Amazon, but based my decision on the reviews for their active noise canceling headphones and ear buds.
When I first received them, I fitted what I thought would be the proper ear pieces and was less than impressed with the noise canceling. I ended up using the largest ear pieces and seating them all the way into my ears to make a tight seal and the noise canceling was outstanding. Getting a good seal on both ears is the key to music quality as well as noise canceling.
The audio quality is brighter than the Sony's I had been using. They do have less bass than I was used to hearing, but I was able to hear the upper end of music (i.e. cymbals, etc.) at very reasonable listening levels (1/2 volume or so). Compared to the ATH-ANC3's, the old phones sound murky to me.
I don't feel any ear fatigue and haven't had any feed back, even when using a pillow. The case is just about the size of an eye glass case, so there isn't any issue finding a spot for it in my computer bag. It has plenty of room for the phones, airline adapter, extra battery and my Creative Zen. The case stashes in the seat back pocket on the airplane until time to put everything away. Battery life probably is on the order of 40 hours or more.
The electronics module is small, but reduces the convenience of the in the ear design. The most convenient arrangement for me is to put the MP3 player in a shirt pocket and clip the module to the top of the pocket. The electronics module is heavy enough that you'll want to clip it to something.
I pulled them out and compared them with the QCII's at the Bose kiosk in the Denver airport a few weeks ago and didn't leave feeling I had inferior headphones.
76 of 81 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars I bought them both.,
This review is from: Audio-Technica ATH ANC3 NoiseCancel Earphone BK! (Electronics)I recently purchased both the Audio-Technica ATH-ANC3 QuietPoint Noise-Canceling In-Ear Headphones and the Audio-Technica ATH-ANC7 QuietPoint Active Noise-Cancelling Headphones. One for me and one for my partner. I used the over the ear one on a recent 8hr flight. Loved them! The sound leak is pretty bad, however, on a plane you could not hear it. At home, others in the room can hear the music just as much at you can. The music tone is great! High, mid and low tones can all be heard. Comfort was good and I did not find them tight. My ears got hot after about 3 hours, no big deal. I just took them off for a sec. The noise cancel was wonderful, not great with out audio. They are big and it makes it difficult to sleep on a plane.
The in ear type was much better. The noice cancelling was amazing, with or without audio. I was completly blown away. My partner had no discomfort after about 7 hrs of wearing. They also have a neat pause button to turn off the devise for a moment, ie. to talk to the flght attendant without having to take them off. GREAT! The draw back was the sound quality with music. Not very good. No mid tones. For someone, like myself, that knows what you should be hearing in a song, missing it can be a problem. For someone, like my partner, who really does not care greatly about all tones in music, these were great. If and when I have to buy another set, I probably will be buying the in ear type. The pluses out weight the minus.
19 of 19 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Will never fly again without those!,
This review is from: Audio-Technica ATH ANC3 NoiseCancel Earphone BK! (Electronics)I bought those headphones 2 weeks ago. I was not expecting too much from the noise canceling system. I first tried them at work where there is a lot of noise coming from the vents and the A/C, and they are doing a great job at reducing this kind of noise.
I then went for a trip to France. I used the headphones and the adaptor in the in-flight entertaining system, and it was AMAZING! For the first time I enjoyed the movies in the plane. I had to set the volume to the minimum since it cancelled almost completely the background noise of the plane. After watching the movie, I kept the headphones on for the rest of the flight, and I slept like a baby.
I then took a train, and was able to enjoy the music from my iPod without being bothered by the babies crying of the noise of the train.
After a total of 20h in the plane and 6h in the train, the batteries are still good...
I will never travel without those guys anymore! Great buy!!!
21 of 22 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Great product; BUT can not be used with computer,
This review is from: Audio-Technica ATH ANC3 NoiseCancel Earphone BK! (Electronics)They do an excellent job cancelling noise. Audio quality seemed great to me. I have used them on very long flights, walking on busy streets, working on noisy offices. They were able to cancel noise from crying babies, people snoring, people talking and laughing loudly. I loved them!
BUT when used with the computer, they make an awful constant buzz/crackling noise (with the noise-cancelling mode on, off and even without battery). AT technical support informed me that it is a common problem with high sensitivity (low impedance) headphones.
19 of 21 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars These Earphones Are Perfect for a Videographer!,
This review is from: Audio-Technica ATH ANC3 NoiseCancel Earphone BK! (Electronics)
As a Full-Time Videographer, I need these headphones to make sure I am getting the right sound at the right moment. When work is done, I just plug right into my iPod, switch on the noise canceling function and go. Keeps my load light and easy to transport from set-to-set! I highly recommend them.
14 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great in-ear alternative to Noise Isolation,
This review is from: Audio-Technica ATH ANC3 NoiseCancel Earphone BK! (Electronics)A colleague let me borrow these, and I've used them around the house and on a recent long trip. I own Bose QuietComfort 2 over the ear, recently tried a pair of ableplanet over the ear noise cancellation, and have a pair of noise isolation (ie earplug headphones) as well.
If you are looking for in the ear noise cancellation, and are tired of the ear plug-like noise isolation, these headphones are great. the active noise cancellation, while not as good as the gold standard Bose, are as good as the able planet over the ear. I've used these while cutting the lawn, and they significantly mute the lawnmower noise so you can enjoy the music. Significantly smaller to pack, easier to sleep with on the plane than over the ear models.
overall, a really solid alternative at a good price point.
9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Works just as described - I'm quite happy with them!,
This review is from: Audio-Technica ATH ANC3 NoiseCancel Earphone BK! (Electronics)I read a lot of reviews for the dozen or so noise-canceling earbuds available on the market. One thing I knew I didn't want was the large over-ear headphones. I'm a traveling professional who leaves town every other week. Size and weight are important in my pack as I carry a couple books, a couple files, a folio, a laptop, power cords, a slim camera, a microphone, a recorder, an extra laptop battery (for long flights), an external floppy disk drive, business cards, office supplies... you get the point. A lot of stuff!
So one more thing could break the seams on the backpack. Enter the Audio-Technica Noise-Canceling Earbuds. They're a perfect size and really do cancel 80-85% of the noise around me while on the flight. When you hit the slider to turn on the noise canceling, it's night and day. While you can't expect dead silence in such a compact form (maybe in the future?), you hear some of the hissing from the noise canceling, you hear some of the constant engine noise, you hear some of the conversations around you... but it's significantly less. Once you get used to the static hiss (white noise), your new world is quite pleasant, really.
I recommend them for any traveling professional. I think they're the best iteration of current technology. I can't wait to see if someone can one-up these in the future. And did I mention Amazon's price is fantastic? The least expensive shipping brought them from the North East to the California coast in a little over a week. Just so you know...
9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Outstanding and comfy,
This review is from: Audio-Technica ATH ANC3 NoiseCancel Earphone BK! (Electronics)I was never really happy with my JVC noise canceling cans. The noise canceling was reasonable (for forty bucks especially) but there was always a distinct hum when they were on and they only cut out a narrow band of low jet rumble. The comfort for plane use was marginal as it is for all cans. After a while they all leave me feeling clammy around the ears. Also hard to find a comfortable position for sleeping. On a whim i bought these ear buds.
Flew to Miami last week popped these in and was really impressed. They cut out a HUGE swath of jet noise without any hum or buzz and the in-ear design is so much more comfy. I can lean my head into a pillow no-problem. I didn't even plug in my iPod for 20 minutes the silence was so nice. Once i did plug it in the audio quality was completely acceptable. Nice crisp highs and enough bass for my ears. (Note that I do not play any music that might really need crazy-good bass performance. For rock, classical and spoken word they are just fine.)
Left them in for the entire 2 and a half hour flight with no "headphone fatigue."
One tiny problem is since the design seals your outer ear, when the plane is climbing or descending you will get a lot of pressure problems requiring a lot of yawning to "pop" your ears. Once at altitude that goes away.
Included carry case and accessories are great. you get an extension cord, an airplane seat jack adaptor and a variety of rubber seal sizes to fit your ear perfectly. The stock mediums fit me but nice they included other sizes. Also nice was a good Eveready alkaline AA battery was included.
9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Very good, but...,
This review is from: Audio-Technica ATH ANC3 NoiseCancel Earphone BK! (Electronics)I do most of my work in a noisy computer sever room. I purchased these to help block out some of the noise of the very loud air handler while still being able to listen to my Mp3 player. Was looking at the big brother ANC7's but thought these might be easier to stick in my backpack. Well, these little gems do just that, and do a very good job at it. As soon as I put them on and turned the Active noise cancellation on, pooof....The AC noise just about vanished...Ahhh sweet silence. until I started to move around. You can hear every bump and scrape on the cables. The cables are poorly insulated. I even tried them while mowing the lawn and they are much better than earplugs. They are comfortable and come with a battery, extension cable, Airplane adapter and a nice little case. I would definitely recommend them. Only reason I do not give them a 5 star rating is the poor cable insulation. All that said they are well worth the price.
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Audio-Technica ATH ANC3 NoiseCancel Earphone BK! by Audio-Technica
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