Audio-Technica ATH-ANC40BT Wireless Noise-Cancelling Headphones

Technical Audio Group | (02) 9519 0900 | | RRP: $249

I’ve got to hand it to Audio-Technica; they managed to have me completely stumped with this new product, twice. The first instance was in trying the figure out how to get these headphones out of the packaging, the second was in trying to figure out how they were supposed to be worn. That’s the fun part about coming across a completely new concept in a product we all thought could not be redesigned, but Audio-Technica have done just that. The ATH- ANC40BT wireless noise-cancelling headphones might look a little unconventional to start with, but trust me; they make complete sense when you actually try them.


Let’s start with the physical design of these headphones. They are unconventional indeed, but I could see this becoming a very popular norm without much worry. The transmitters and controls are housed in a band that goes around your neck, and is barely noticeable to the wearer after a minute or two. Two ear buds come up on cables from this band, just like a traditional pair of earphones, but without all the long cabling getting in the way. Each ear bud swings on about 8 inches of cable, so there is no excess hanging about when they are placed in your ear. It’s very neat, totally practical and extremely unobtrusive once you get your head around how to wear them correctly.



These units don’t require heavy batteries to operate in a wireless capacity, they charge from a mini USB connector housed on one terminal of the neck band, which is cleverly concealed – I had to actually go looking for it to begin with. Volume, power and pairing controls are all located on one side of the band along with the built in microphone for use with smartphones. The ANC40BTs can store up to 8 different devices in its memory for use in different circumstances and adjust volumes automatically for call setting when used with a phone. But, these aren’t just about making phone calls, the earbuds themselves deliver a really punchy sound with plenty of low frequency delivery and a complete drop in environmental noise that is noticeable the second you power them up. Listening to music on the go just got a whole lot better. 


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Hits and Misses


Unique design that makes complete sense

Great noise cancellation

Wireless connection improves listening freedom

Big sound from a small driver


The packaging had me completely stumped