Technics has just announced two new pairs of true wireless earbuds, catchily named the EAH-AZ60 and EAH-AZ40. They follow on from the firm's true wireless debut, the very decent EAH-AZ70W, which were released in 2020.
Both sets of new earbuds feature Technics' proprietary JustMyVoice technology, which works to improve voice pick-up during calls. Both pairs also support Bluetooth 5.2, have a splash-proof IPX4 rating and boast different sound modes to help users customise their listening experience.
So, how do the two models differ? The flagship Technics EAH-AZ60 (below) sits above its sibling in the pecking order because, as you might expect, it features active noise cancellation, courtesy of four mics on each earpiece as well as the feedforward (FF) and feedback (FB) noise-cancelling method. The EAH-AZ60 also supports LDAC – good news for hi-res audio streaming service subscribers considering it's the Sony-developed codec that allows transmission of audio up to 32-bit/96kHz over Bluetooth at up to 990kbps. Here it is delivered as 24-bit/96kHz.
Of course, sometimes it's good to hear your surroundings, which is where the EAH-AZ60's Natural Ambient Mode comes in. It promises to capture (and hone in on) surrounding noise, allowing users to listen to music or take calls while paying attention to the outside world. In addition, the new Attention Mode promises to capture sounds in the human voice frequency range – especially good for parents working from home.
In terms of driver size, the AZ60 houses a new 8mm driver per earpiece, while the AZ40 (top) utilise new 6mm drivers and a total of six mics for clear calls. Battery life is a claimed seven hours with ANC on for the AZ60, and a total of 24 hours inclusive of the wireless charging case's juicepack. For the AZ40, you should get seven and a half hours, or 25 hours in total.
Technics seems to have worked hard to deliver two pairs of earbuds that fit properly, too. The new drop shape of the earbuds is designed for security and comfort, where the inner portion has been designed to maximise contact with the ear canal for optimal fit, while the outer portion of the earbud is thinner than previous models, helping to prevent them from falling out of place. The length of the buds has been shortened to reduce the influence of gravitational pull, too. To top it off, you get seven pairs of eartips with the AZ60 (in sizes ranging from XS to XL) and four pairs of different-sized tips with the AZ40.
Both models benefit from the improved Technics Audio Connect App, available for iOS and Android, plus easy access to voice assistants with a tap of the left bud.
The Technics EAH-AZ60 are available in silver and black, priced at £199 / $229 excluding tax (about AU$280). The EAH-AZ40, meanwhile, are available in silver, black and rose gold, priced at £129 / $149 excluding tax (about AU$200). Both pairs will be available in October 2021.
Love Technics but prefer cans? You'll have to wait until next year, but the firm has said that in early 2022, it is all set to release new "overhead wireless headphones" named EAH-A800. When we know more, so shall you...
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