Design & Construction
The Audio-Technica ATH-CKS5TW is a truly wireless in-ear headphone that is part of the Solid Bass Series of Audio-Technica's lineup. On the left earbud, we have the volume control button which enables volume up with one press and volume down with a double press. Controlling the rest of the playback functions is possible via the button on the right earbud. Press once to play/pause, press twice to skip forward and press thrice to go back to previous track. During calls, press once to pick up/end the call. It takes about 2 hours to charge the earbuds and 3 hours to charge the case. Bluetooth pairing is triggered when the earbuds are removed from the case. As a sports earbud, the ATH-CKS5TW boasts an IPX2 splash-proof rating for those intense sweaty workouts, giving users the ultimate peace of mind. Both earbuds bear the Audio-Technica logo and have LED light built-in to the front of the earbuds. The earbuds also come with different sizes of ear tips and wings to ensure a tight seal and secure fit. The earbuds also do a great job at resisting fingerprints smudges. Moving on to the case, the case is a rounded box with3 LED indicators in the front to tell you the remaining battery life. The USB-C port can be found on the rear of the case. The hinges holding the cover and body of the case is quite robust so it should be able to put up with life. The earbuds do docked in fairly easily and do not fall out even if the case is flipped.
The 10mm drivers do get pretty loud, producing a bass-boosted sound signature. Based on user experience, the noise isolation is fantastic. I could not hear my surroundings when there was no music on. Audio-Technica also allows users to make small changes of the earbuds through its Connect App available on the App Store and Play Store. In the app, you can change the audio codecs and change a few other settings but you cannot change the way the earbuds sound as it does not have an equaliser built-in. The earbuds are great for all genres of music ranging from soothing jazz to bass-heavy EDM tracks. Highs and mids come off as clean and balanced and bass is emphasized which gives off a nice thump in your ear. The soundstage was a little bit too shallow for my liking though as instruments, vocals, bass and treble do not have much depth and detail. Sadly, call quality can be improved though as the caller on the other end feedbacked that he could not really hear me well.
Connectivity & Portability
The earbuds support the Apt-X codecs together with Bluetooth Version 5.0 and they automatically power on/off when docked and taken out from the case. The battery life peaks at 15 hours per use and a total of 45 hours from the case. The package also comes with a USB_C cable for charging. The headphones' connectivity to the app is perfect as it is able to detect my headphones when it is connected via Bluetooth. If you try to watch videos or movies with these, they do not have any latency.
Apt-X Codec Support
Controls For Music Playback, Volume & Calls
Strong Bass-heavy Sound Signature
Long Battery Life
Weak Water-Resistance (IPX2)
No Ambient Sound Mode
Lack Of Volume Controls
The Bottom Line
The Audio-Technica ATH-CKS5TW is a suitable option for those that enjoy a heavy bass sound signature. With a long battery life of 45 hours, USB-C charging and Bluetooth 5,0 support, it is all one could ask for in investing in getting their own wire-free earbuds. 3 colours are offered for this model to fit users of different genders; Black, Blue and Khaki.
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