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What Hi-Fi?
What Hi-Fi?
What Hi-Fi?

Audio-Technica ATH-TWX7

Wireless earbuds: Audio-Technica ATH-TWX7.

There are a lot of true wireless earbuds knocking around at the moment. It sometimes feels like a new pair arrives every week, and while it’s easy to get to grips with what the markedly premium pairs are offering, some are trickier to place. At £190 / $259, the Audio-Technica ATH-TWX7 are at a hard-to-pin down position within the industry landscape, significantly undercutting the premium class leaders but clearly aiming a little higher than the myriad contenders sitting somewhere within the £100-150 / $150-200 mid-range. 

What Audio-Technica is seemingly offering, then, is something of a middle ground; a pair of wireless buds that still house a strong feature list and plenty of sonic performance while saving you a significant sum if you’re not planning to go all-out on sound and price. It’s a fine line to tread, though, and there’s only so much leeway you can give a pair of buds before they simply aren’t up to snuff. 


(Image credit: Audio-Technica)

The Audio-Technica ATH-TWX7 retail at £190 / $199, a price which places them between the rather affordable Sony WF-C700N (£100 / $120) and flagship Sony WF-1000XM5 (£259 / $299) – both worthy Award-winners at their respective price points. The Technics EAH-AZ60M2 offers a more direct rival at £199 / $250.

There are a few slightly cheaper contemporaries knocking around in the mid-range market. The Huawei Freebuds 5 currently retail at £139 / $179, while the JBL Live Pro 2 TWS were tested at £130 / $150 but often drop down to just over £100 / $120 during sales events and discount periods.

Build & comfort

(Image credit: What Hi-Fi?)

The ATH-TWX7 are a good-looking, nicely-made and lightweight pair of wireless earbuds that we’d be happy sporting for long periods without issue or complaint. Such is the slight, diminutive nature of the earbuds that you can easily forget that you’re wearing them at all, and at just 4.7g, they’re light as a feather. Even the slimline JBL Live Pro 2 TWS weigh more at a frankly gargantuan 4.8g. 

Audio-Technica ATH-TWX7 tech specs
(Image credit: Audio-Technica)

Bluetooth 5.1

Codec Support AAC, SBC, LDAC

Noise-cancelling? Yes 

Battery Life: Up to 6.5 hours (no case), up to 20 hours (with case)

Finishes x 3 (ash black, rich white, stone grey)

Weight 4.7g (each)

Sporting a slender, long-stem design crafted predominantly from moulded plastic, the buds offer a secure fit, a boon that’s aided by Audio-Technica providing a bounteous choice of various ear tips. We feel positively spoiled with the two batches (XS/S/M/L) provided: a soft set for a more comfortable fit and a standard set for greater security. There’s no in-ear wing-tip provided, nor is there any in-ear fit test, but that decent choice of plugs should be enough to ensure you get a snug anchoring if you’re willing to do a bit of legwork to find your preferred pair.

The buds themselves may be small and light, but they feel nicely made, boasting a solid IPX4 rating that lets them get splashed with water without causing serious damage.


(Image credit: What Hi-Fi?)

Time to check out some specs. Alongside the standard SBC and AAC Bluetooth protocols, the ATH-TWX7 supports the higher-quality LDAC codec (accessible via the app), allowing you to stream music at higher data rates from compatible source devices. Battery life is okay – you’ll eke out around 7.5 hours from the buds and 24 hours with the charging case (ANC off) – numbers that best the likes of the Sony WF-C700N (15 hours total) but fall short of the 30 hours provided by JBL’s Live Pro 2 TWS. If you have ANC switched on, those figures naturally fall to 6.5 from the buds and a total of 20 when the case is factored in.

Noise cancelling is expected at this level, and the ATH-TWX7 duly provide it, with a performance that to our ears feels decent if not truly outstanding. That standard humming layer of noise provided by buzzing lights, computer fans and air conditioners is dampened down effectively enough, but anything more challenging, such as human speech, clacking keyboards, screeching train tracks, comes through with little resistance. We weren’t expecting Bose Ultra Earbuds-levels of effectiveness, but the ATH-TWX7 don’t do much to distinguish themselves from the performance of the much cheaper Sony WF-C700N. 

On-ear controls are provided, too, and it’s good news for anyone who abhors the all-encompassing touch surface provided by most premium wireless buds. Instead, a small button on each bud’s stem takes care of several customisable functions, including noise cancelling, volume control and playback, and while some ultra-modernists might feel that a physical button seems like something from the Middle Ages, it’s tactile, responsive and gets the job done. While you can change the given functionalities via the given app if you so desire, we found Audio-Technica’s given presets to be logical, well-thought-out and eminently effective. 

That app, incidentally, is a rather good one. It’s not staggeringly exciting or innovative, yet it’s a solid platform that lets you adjust the classic parameters – noise-cancelling, volume, equaliser – while also granting access to low latency mode, which codec you want (availability depending) and whether you receive voice calls in Natural or Noise-Reduction mode. 

Voice calls, while we’re on the subject, perform well thanks to two beamforming microphones housed in each earbud, with a solid, focused and clear sound that rarely suffers from crackling or interruptions. The increasingly popular Bluetooth Multipoint works nicely, too, allowing us to flit between sources quickly and efficiently without breaking our connection. We’re feeling thorough, so we try out Audio-Technica’s rather niche Soundscape feature, which provides either a relaxing natural ambience, some general "masking" noises or even meditation sounds to aid concentration. It’s all perfectly fine, but possibly not worth forking out any extra notes for. 


(Image credit: What Hi-Fi?)

Audio-Technica’s ATH-TWX7 will ultimately be judged on how they sound, so it’s time to dive into some test tracks and see if these slender pretenders are musically adept or a little tone-deaf. We go hard and heavy with Alter Bridge’s rock anthem Metalingus, and while our cheaper Sony WF-C700N comparatives might sound a little excitable in the treble, the ATH-TWX7 do a good job of keeping even the sharpest of guitar squeals in check. Detail levels are solid, allowing us to hear the percussive thud of those hard bass drum kicks together with the track’s raw, emphatic vocals. 

To an extent, that’s to the ATH-TWX7’s credit. The smooth, classical feel of Debussy’s Clair de Lune and the soulful emotion of Lionel Richie’s Hello feel easy to listen to, with any hard edges filed off for fear of offending our delicate ears. The issue, though, is that this overwhelmingly laid-back nature veers somewhat into a tendency towards sonic safety, even blandness, which can become a hindrance the more you listen. The Audio-Technicas have all of the main “meat and potatoes” ingredients in the recipe, but they seem to have forgotten to add any essential herbs and spices.

Take a recording of Muse’s Knights Of Cydonia, an ever-evolving space-rock riot that benefits from headphones that can convey the multiple layers of instrumental texture alongside a healthy dollop of tongue-in-cheek fun. Listened to through the Award-winning (and much cheaper) Sony WF-C700N, the track feels alive, dynamically engaging and truly energetic, and while the affordable Sony buds may sometimes feel overexcited at the treble, they give a real sense of contrast and performance to the occasion. The Audio-Technica buds, by contrast, are forever pulling back on the reins, settling for a gentle trot rather than allowing things to emerge into a full-blown cosmic gallop.

This reserved character really doesn’t do anything for the ATH-TWX7 when livelier tracks are pulled from the musical drawer. A Tidal playlist of funky, toe-tapping tunes features the joyful nostalgia of Junior Senior’s Move Your Feet, M.I.A’s anarchic, unruly Paper Planes and Justice’s We Are Your Friends – all songs that gain life from headphones that are able to convey the spirit and rhythmic drive underpinning each composition. A snappier pair of rivals, such as the JBL Live Pro 2 TWS, gobble up those rhythms with far more enthusiasm and insight than the Audio-Technica.

Sadly, Audio-Technica’s buds are too timid to give any given tune its best showcase, their rather reserved nature robbing each recording of its life and spirit, like a shy pre-teen unwilling to take to the dance floor at his first school disco. Pull out any model within a stone’s throw of the ATH-TWX7’s price range – the Sony WF-C700N, the JBL Live Pro 2 TWS or the Technics EAH-AZ40M2 – and each competitor will make Audio-Technica’s effort seem restrained and a little sluggish by comparison. We pass the earbuds over to a colleague and, after mere minutes of listening, they tumble to the same conclusion – the ATH-TWX7 play it disappointingly safe, especially with regard to rhythmic drive and dynamic punch.


(Image credit: What Hi-Fi?)

We had high hopes for the Audio-Technica ATH-TWX7, and we’re keen on their attractive, lightweight design and many of the features on display. However, cheaper rivals, including the five-star Sony WF-C700N or the JBL Live Pro 2 TWS, offer more invigorating, musically engaging listens.


  • Sound 3
  • Features 4
  • Comfort 4


Read our Sony WF-C700N review

Also consider the JBL Live Pro 2 TWS

Read our review of the Technics EAH-AZ60M2

Best wireless earbuds: top pairs tested by our experts

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