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Discussion Starter #1
Hey guys, 2 years ago I bought a pair of A900's. About an hour ago they started playing only out of the left ear. This happened while I was listening to them, all of a sudden they would only play out of the left ear for some reason.

I haven't dropped them a single time, never have transported them in a backpack or anything that would be stressful like that. They have never ever been anywhere other than the box they came in, my desk, or my head (or someone else's head while they were sitting at my desk). I generally take good care of my stuff - I've had the same cell phone for 6 years and it is still going strong (although the battery is on its last legs). Either I got a lemon, or Audio Technica sucks.

I thought Audio Technica was supposed to be a good brand? I mean, the headphones sounded okay while they worked. I'm just pissed that I spent $250 on a pair of headphones and they don't even last long enough to warrant replacing the muffs.

wt*.

With really high-end headphones, people trade them and buy them used and stuff. I assume this is is a fairly common problem and just something to do with soldering/wiring coming loose. AT only offers a 1-year warranty on headphones, so I don't need to worry about voiding anything... Maybe I should just pop them open and try to rewire myself?
 

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It could be the jack. The TRS plug for the headphone.

That and hinges receive the most wear.

It would be worth rewiring them in my mind, if you can't return them for repair.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Quote:

Originally Posted by _02 View Post
It could be the jack. The TRS plug for the headphone.

That and hinges receive the most wear.

It would be worth rewiring them in my mind, if you can't return them for repair.
Sadly it's not the jack, that would be an easy fix - just chop an inch or so off the bottom of the chord, buy a new jack, problem solved.

I think the problem is with where the wire connects to the speaker inside the right-hand cup. I popped them open and couldn't find a visible break, but after a little bit of jiggling one of the wires broke off. That could either be due to the fact that they are tiny tiny wires and I broke it myself, or that wire was already getting ready to break...

In any case, I guess I will attempt to re-solder it. I have absolutely no idea what I'm doing, wish me luck
It's too bad my Dad died, he would have these fixed up in no time
 

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Remember, Audio Technica cans go like this; headphone cabling is soldered to a piece of flat metal, which btw is glued down. The flat piece of metal is very lightly soldered to the driver's coil. Make sure when you've melted the solder, or heated up the metal to soldering temperature, you don't pull the metal up or else you risk pulling the coil wiring off...
 

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soldering is not difficult... i would strongly suggest just practice tinning and soldering a few wires together first just to get a good idea of how much solder and heat you need to get the desired result...

too much heat near a pcb/connect = melt city
too little heat = messy and weak connection...

Tinning is just coating the exposed piece of wire with solder before even trying to connect it to another wire or terminal.. make life easier.. then trying to solder two bare copper wire together.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Well, soldering was successful but it turns out that wasn't the problem.... I think maybe one of the wires broke inside the insulation.... I think I located where this happened and I'm going to try to strip away the insulation and reconnect the wire.... Wish me luck again
 

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If you use a 1/8 to 1/4 (or the other way) adapter -that could be a problem. I got a cheap adapter with my tube amp and got issues with it. Instantly tossed it in the can.
 

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You could try finding the broken connection, but I would just do a recable. It's supposed to make it better anyway.
 
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Discussion Starter #10
Ugh, I thought I fixed that broken wire but I missed it apparently. I'm getting better at soldiering... I just cut the wires off, stripped off the insulation, soldered the wire back together, and then re-soldered them to the speaker successfully. Only to have the same problem persist


I think I am going to need to just do a re-cable. I'm gonna open up the other side and see what's going on there, I might just need 1 cable. Not sure, I've never done any of this before... .But given my success at screwing with the R cup, I feel like I could probably do a re-cable successfully if I could just find wires small enough to fit....

I think next time I'll buy $100 headphones so I don't feel bad about just replacing them every 2 years.
 

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I bought a pair of $120 Sony headphones... lets see... 10 years ago.

I use them currently, thought the swivel hinges are in need of some DIY repair.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Quote:

Originally Posted by _02 View Post
I bought a pair of $120 Sony headphones... lets see... 10 years ago.

I use them currently, thought the swivel hinges are in need of some DIY repair.
I guess Audio Technica just sucks, then. Note above how good care I take of them. They literally have never left my desk since I got them 2 years ago
I'm even careful not to put any stress on the jack by making sure the cord is never squished up and bent at an angle.

I can see why this happened though, after looking at the wires.... The wire connecting the R headphone consists of ~6 strands of copper that are no bigger around than a single human hair. I don't understand why they can't use something just a little bit bigger and more durable...
 

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In my experience, ALL headphones fail eventually. Unfortunately they don't last very long either. One speaker fails in some way or another and the whole thing is junk. No matter what you buy, this will happen whether you treat them well or not. Therefore try not to spend too much unless you have money to burn!


Quote:

Originally Posted by pelirrojo View Post
I can see why this happened though, after looking at the wires.... The wire connecting the R headphone consists of ~6 strands of copper that are no bigger around than a single human hair. I don't understand why they can't use something just a little bit bigger and more durable...
If they made their headphones last very long, you wouldn't buy more than one pair in your lifetime. Planned obsolescence.
 

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Audio Technica is an excellent brand. Suggesting that the entire brand "sucks" because you are having problems with your headphones shouldnt reflect on the entire brand. Many posters on these forums and others are very impressed by their audio quality and durability.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Quote:

Originally Posted by Gib007 View Post
In my experience, ALL headphones fail eventually. Unfortunately they don't last very long either. One speaker fails in some way or another and the whole thing is junk. No matter what you buy, this will happen whether you treat them well or not. Therefore try not to spend too much unless you have money to burn!

Lesson learned. I figured I'd buy some nice headphones and be set for a while - I know there are people who are into vintage headphones/speakers, and people keep really high-end audio stuff for years and years and years... But I guess it's kind of like a car in that parts fail and while it is possible to keep one running indefinitely, you end up doing a lot of work and replacing things as you go along.

So probably even the best headphones require some major overhauling every few years? It's just that if you've spend $1000 on a pair of cans, you'll be willing to drop $200 on whatever kind of repair/replacement to keep them going whereas most people just buy new ones because the cost of the repair is more than the cost of the headphone...

Quote:

Originally Posted by Woundingchaney View Post
Audio Technica is an excellent brand. Suggesting that the entire brand "sucks" because you are having problems with your headphones shouldnt reflect on the entire brand. Many posters on these forums and others are very impressed by their audio quality and durability.
Yeah, I was just frustrated. And still am


I'll probably save $150 and just buy some A700's if recabling turns out to be too much hassle...
 

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As with any electronic components, some fail earlier than others when others it's fine. You probably got unlucky but to apply that to the build quality of the entire brand is illogical and false. Headphones can easily last a decade +. Apply the same logic to computer parts and you'll see the parallels. Like with computer parts, you usually upgrade cuz of upgraditis, not cuz it broke.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Quote:

Originally Posted by chinesekiwi View Post
Like with computer parts, you usually upgrade cuz of upgraditis, not cuz it broke.
Not me, look at my sig rig


Also, I found a guide on recabling and it looks very doable... I think I will be able to save these headphones. It might even be - gasp - fun
 

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I've had some d2000's for about 4 years. I sat on them and completely snapped the cups off the headband, but tapped a new screw hole. Anyways my point is I have not treated them well, but they still work great. I think spending a good amount on headphones is a good investment.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
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Originally Posted by Crazy9000 View Post
I've had some d2000's for about 4 years. I sat on them and completely snapped the cups off the headband, but tapped a new screw hole. Anyways my point is I have not treated them well, but they still work great. I think spending a good amount on headphones is a good investment.


I suppose if I can master re-cabling, I'll pretty much be all set. I've never had a pair of headphones in which the speakers died, it's always something to do with the cabling. And if I can fix that, then I can probably make these last for a long long time. I think if I get a higher quality cable, it will last longer, too. I mentioned that the cable to the R cup in the A900's is about 6 strands of hair-diameter copper....

When I re-cable, I'm going to drill a hole in the bottom of the right cup and just have one cable going to each cup and just avoid all that silliness that requires such a thin and fragile wire. Should last a lot longer I hope. Come to think of it, they might even sound better because the bigger cable will be able to pump more power to the speakers? I dunno, I don't have a clue about how any of this stuff works.
 

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Some people think cables make a noticeable difference, some think there is none at all. Remember some audiophiles buy $500 fancy USB cables, and swear they can hear the difference. Placebo is pretty strong.
 
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