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In celebration of its 60th anniversary as one of the world’s foremost manufacturers of high-fidelity audio products, Audio-Technica today announced the introduction of its limited-edition AT-MC2022 Dual Moving Coil Stereo Cartridge and top-of-the-line ATH-W2022 audiophile closed-back wooden headphones. In addition, Audio-Technica has created a special anniversary donation program in support of its longstanding relationship with Playing for Change (PFC), a global movement created to inspire and connect the world through music.
Commenting on the significance of the company’s 60th anniversary, Audio-Technica president Kazuo Matsushita noted, “It is an honor to provide a quality audio experience to listeners worldwide. What begins as a simple vibration – a subtle movement – results in an emotional connection. We believe in realizing the full potential of sound that creates connections and enriches lives.”
The AT-MC2022 phono cartridge (SRP: $9,000, now available for purchase) combines a stunning visual appeal with extraordinary musical realism, offering expansive, rich, detailed and dynamic sound. The AT-MC2022 features a unified stylus and cantilever made from a single lab-grown diamond. This construction eliminates the distortions that can result from the conventional design of a stylus bonded to a cantilever, resulting in a purer transmission of the vibrations from the record groove. The stylus has a line contact geometry for superb tracking ability and resolution along with exceptional transient response.▼ Article continues below ▼
The AT-MC2022 incorporates Audio-Technica’s exclusive dual moving coil design, for optimal channel separation and imaging, and its highly efficient magnetic circuit provides higher output. The cartridge body is made from a precision-machined aluminum base and titanium housing with an elastomer under cover – a selection of materials that ensures the optimum sound quality and reduces resonance. In celebration of Audio-Technica’s 60th anniversary, the AT-MC2022 incorporates design accents inspired by traditional shippo (Japanese cloisonné) enameling. It comes with a walnut presentation case with an engraved 60th anniversary logo and individual serial number.
The ATH-W2022 (SRP: $9,000, now available for purchase) are some of the finest headphones ever created by Audio-Technica. Made entirely in Japan, the headphones feature both beautiful Sakura (cherry blossom) and hou-ou (phoenix) designs, hand-painted on the left and right earcups, respectively. The earcups are composed of traditional Mizume (Japanese birch) using traditional Echizen urushi (lacquer) and maki-e (lacquer) techniques, and the right earcup incorporates an inlaid mother-of-pearl within the hou-ou design, making each ATH-W2022 a unique work of art.
The ATH-W2022 incorporates a host of Audio-Technica’s latest manufacturing technologies. The center dome of the 58 mm driver diaphragm is made from 30-micron-thick pure titanium for exceptional reproduction of the mid-high range with excellent high-frequency characteristics, as well. The headphones also utilize a newly designed magnet circuit that incorporates a pole and yoke structured from laminated pure iron plates to reduce back electromotive force (back EFM). Adding to its appeal, the ATH-W2022 is housed in a custom wood storage case featuring an elegant paulownia lid.
Since 2018, Audio-Technica has been a proud sponsor of Playing for Change, a global movement created to inspire and connect the world through music, born from the shared belief that music has the power to break down boundaries and overcome distances between people. As the exclusive microphone and headphone sponsor of Playing for Change, Audio-Technica has been providing global support and equipment for PFC and the PFC Band, in addition to advocating for PFC at events year-round. In honor of this year’s anniversary, Audio-Technica U.S, Canada, UK and Europe will donate a percentage of its 60th Anniversary product sales to the Playing for Change Foundation through March 2023.
Inspired by the depth of emotion he witnessed at vinyl listening sessions organized during his tenure at the Bridgestone Museum of Arts in Tokyo, company founder Hideo Matsushita was determined to enable more people to experience the warmth of analog listening. In a small Shinjuku apartment, he established Audio-Technica and began developing cartridges. His first two products, the AT-1 and AT-3, achieved success and enabled Hideo to expand his business. He opened a larger headquarters in Machida, where the company still operates today.
60 years since Hideo created his first cartridge, Audio-Technica will mark this occasion by reaffirming its commitment to analog. Focusing on a human-centered approach to the process of generating sound, the company sees analog as an enjoyment and appreciation for audio that doesn’t alter, despite the rapid changes throughout history.
Today Audio-Technica is an integral part of the audio industry, with products used at global events, on screen, in studios and in homes – retaining the “audio for all” philosophy and ensuring future generations can experience the joy of analog.
The brand will celebrate its 60th anniversary with a series of events across the world on the theme of analog living.