Denon AH-D5000, meet your latest nemesis: Audio Technica's W5000. Dammit, even the name's almost identical. We're utterly in love with Denon's wooden headphone beauties, but are AT's latest and greatest going to beat them down to a bloody pulp? At £700 -- a sharp-intake-of-breath £200 more than the Denons -- they could well.
Inside each can is a 53mm Neodymium driver, responding to an incredible 5Hz-45kHz frequency range, smack-bang identical to the AH-D5000s (although the D5000s have 50mm drivers). We're also promised that AT's 'Double Air Damping System' will provide an extra wallop of bass, should it need it.
After months of continued listening, we found the AH-D5000's bass ever so slightly protruded into the lower mid-range. It's a sound we're rather fond of, as it adds a touch of extra warmth to the tone, though the occasional mid-range purist may refer to it as a sign of weakness. So we're very, very keen to see how Audio Technica's high-end iteration of the D5000s address this characteristic.
Safe to say we're extremely keen to hear these new cans, and ours will be arriving in a couple of days. We'll let you know when you can splash out on a pair, but it should be very soon. Expect a full review and initial ears-on report imminently, if not sooner. -Nate Lanxon
Update: Read our full Audio Technica ATH-W5000 headphones review.