The ATH-CKS330XBT has been on sale for several months in selected markets. Now Audio-Technica has brought it in Singapore for a limited distribution. Given a retail price of S$68, the wireless earphones offer comfortable quality sound.
When consumers worldwide are embracing true wireless being the most liberating audio solution, there are still people who prefers a more traditional design. The ATH-CKS330XBT is an old-school wireless earphones, and technically not even a neckband, as it would require the cables to be stiffer, like the Creative Aurvana Trio Wireless or Sudio Elva.
Design and Operations
As both sides of the cable have the compartment, it provides a weighted balance which minimises cable slippages. To provide additional security, there is a magnetic holder on each side of the cable to fasten the earbuds together. The controls are on the right side, with volume-skip buttons and a play-pause button. Holding the volume buttons will change tracks, while double-click the middle button will activate voice assistant.
The earbuds can last 20 hours play time on a single charge, and deliver 2 hours with 10-minute charge. It uses USB-C connector.
Connects 2 Devices At Once
With the CKS330XBT, you can connect 2 devices at the same time. Pairing is simple: just disconnect from the first device and the earphones go into pairing mode automatically. Once paired, go to the other device and connect again. The earphones will switch to the device with the active audio, and the switch is instantaneous, based on my test with Pixel 4XL, OnePlus 8T and LG Gram. As it switches, the other device will pause automatically. This is an essential feature if you need earphones for work-from-home setting to connect to both your laptop and your smartphone.
The ATH-CKS330XBT belongs to the Solid Bass series, so the bass is its highlight. While the bass is not as intense as the PaMu Quiet or thecoopidea Beans Pro 2, the fatness is undeniably present. The sub-bass is not exaggerated, the slow bass decay delivers the desired fullness, clouding the midrange details. The upper treble is tame but the clear mid-treble makes up for the lack of transparency. The cohesive stereo imaging adds to the immersive listening experience. I believe the 330XBT will be suited for listeners who want a little more bump at the lower range without overdose.
Call quality is excellent in quiet environment compared to the bulk of the true wireless earbuds. It sounded like normal wired earbuds. In a noisy environment like shopping mall, the mic picks up higher-frequency noises while ambient murmurs are minimised. My voice is a little broken due to the noise reduction engine attempting to filter out background noise. Gaming exhibits some lag in AAC, and reduced significantly with SBC mode to be negligible, yet still not as instant as wired.
At just S$68, I would wholeheartedly buy the ATH-CKS330XBT than other lesser-known wireless earbuds brands. It’s backed by Audio-Technica brand quality and 1-year local warranty. For home-office use, a normal wireless earphone would suffice as it rests comfortably around the neck when not in use and connects to 2 devices at the same time, like your smartphone and laptop. It’s a presentable gift for the year-end season.