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Technics AZ60 BT, ANC earphones (review) – CyberShack

The Technics AZ60 BT, ANC earphones are its premium model joining the AZ40 and AZ70. As you may expect from Technics, they are well-made and have a substantial music pedigree. Yet the price – $265 is nowhere near that of the premium brand flagships.
I fondly remember my first Technics turntable and cassette deck back in the 70s. It was a Japanese audiophile sub-brand of Panasonic.
We use Fail (below expectations), Pass (meets expectations) and Exceed (surpasses expectations or is the class leader) against many of the items below. We occasionally give a Pass(able) rating that is not as good as it should be and a Pass ‘+’ rating to show it is good but does not quite make it to Exceed. You can click on most images for an enlargement.
The first impression is the metallic painted carry case – it does not look premium. Next are the buds with milled silver (or black) metal caps – nice.
These are like so many buds (JB Hi-Fi lists over 350 band/model/colour variations), and there are no outstanding design features.
The Technics Audio Connect for Android and iOS is pretty comprehensive. The screenshots below show that it can adjust most aspects of its performance.
The EQ is good and allows for four pre-sets – Bass+, Vocal, Treble+ and Dynamic and a custom setting. We use the latter on ‘flat’ to do the tests.
Seven ear tip sizes (XS1, XS2, S1, S2, M, L, XL), and you need to get it right. There is no seal test (like some brands), and frankly, there is too much choice. However, persevere and don’t worry if you use different size buds in each ear.
The buds sit flat in the Concha and fit quite deep inside the ear canal. Some may find this irritating. Hay fever and itchy ear sufferers should perhaps look at looser fitting buds.
I tested them for four days (one for eight hours), and while the fit was ‘tight’, it was okay for me.
However, I noticed that they are prone to coming out with exercise or jogging.
It has SBC, AAC and LDAC codecs and multi-point connection to two hosts. LDAC is for higher-res music and disables multi-point. The range is 10m, and there were no dropouts at this distance.
If you want Qualcomm aptX Codecs, then you to look elsewhere.
These are sweat resistant. They are not recommended for exercise.
These have 8mm drivers in a closed-back design. The sound stage is within your head, although it had pretty good spatial characteristics when tested with Dolby Atmos content.
In theory, it is a neutral sound signature that allows the App EQ to recess bass, mid or treble. In practice, these are more prone to the source content music quality. If it uses the SBC codec and low-res MP3, then that is what you get. Find some LDAC codec high-res music, and they shine.
Comparing them to the Sony WF-1000XM4 and Sennheiser Momentum 3, they don’t quite have the richness and subtlety that these offer – still, it is pretty good.
If you wondered about those seven ear tip sizes, this is where Technics gets its excellent passive noise cancellation. Get that right, and you are 50% of the way to letting the electronics give you good ANC.
It has four mics per earbud – one feed-forward mic to cancel outside noise, one feedback mic to cancel inside noise, and two mics dedicated to voice detection so that surrounding noise is blocked during calls.
You can adjust the ANC level, which works well, significantly reducing bass-heavy hum right up to conversation.
Again, it is a tad behind Sony and Sennheiser.
There is a decent amount of transparency control in the App. It works well but compared to Sony and Sennheiser is more artificial sounding.
This amplifies the voice 1-4kHz frequency range in transparent mode and could be good for hearing impairment.
These are quite effective with good noise reduction.
Available for SBC but not LDAC codecs.
Google, Alexa and Siri.
While it is acceptable for video, it is too high for games.
If you forget the flagship comparisons to Sony, Sennheiser, Bose and Jabra flagships and look at the price, these offer good value and performance.
In this class are
If you want Qualcomm aptX codecs, the Sennheiser CX Plus is the pick. Otherwise, these meet or exceed the rest above.
Features: 85- Apart from Qi charge (not expected), auto-pause sensors (expected) and no aptX codecs, these are well-featured buds
Value: 85– Good value but in a very crowded market
Performance: 90 – Excellent ANC and good to great sound (depends on the audio content)
Ease of Use: 90 – The App adds value, but once setup, you don’t need to use it
Design: 80 – Similar to most

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