Audio Technica ATH-E40 In-Ear Monitors Review

Audio Technica ATH-E40 In-Ear Monitors Review

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The Audio Technica ATH-E40 in-ear monitoring headphones have all the qualities required for live drumming and playing along to backing tracks. 

With their comprehensive frequency response and innovative ADDC connector, these monitoring headphones deliver excellent comfort, stability, and sound quality. 

In this article, we’ll review the Audio Technica ATH-E40 in-ear monitors in-depth to help you decide if they’re a worthy investment for drummers looking for IEMs for live and studio use.

Audio Technica ATH-E40 In-Ear Monitors

Key Features

  • 20Hz - 20kHz frequency response
  • 107 dB/mW sensitivity
  • Detachable cable
  • Dual-phase push-pull drivers
  • Custom-fitting memory cable
  • Specially designed A2DC connector


Sound Quality
Build Quality


Audio Technica ATH-E40 In-Ear Monitors Ratings

Sound Quality






Build Quality




Sound Quality

In-ear monitors must provide a combination of key qualities, but perhaps the most important is their sound quality. Audio Technica has a long history of producing microphones and headphones; this expertise is apparent with the ATH-E40. 

With a dual push-pull driver design, the ATH-E40 in-ear monitors deliver excellent clarity for such an affordable option. The wide frequency response means that you can send your entire drum kit, along with any other instrument and vocals, into these monitors. 

The midrange frequencies are these in-ear monitor’s biggest strength, but the low-end sounds tight and accurate. You might notice some harshness in the higher frequencies if the in-ear monitors are cranked up too high, but generally, the treble end is pretty crisp. 

You’ll have no issues hearing your kick, snare, and vocals through these in ear monitors when performing live. The forward midrange highlights these sound sources without causing a muddy mix. 


In-ear monitors must isolate the sound you hear in your ears no matter what instrument you play, but this is even more important for a drummer.  

Although the ATH-E40 doesn’t completely block out external sounds as some molded in-ear monitors can, they still greatly reduce the volume of outside noise considerably. 

Compared to the other, pricier offerings in Audio Technica’s E Series, the ATH-E40 has a larger enclosure. This makes them more visible when being worn, but it also helps to passively block sound frequencies from entering your ear. 

Most drummers like to hear some external noise when performing, as this can help them to play with more feel. Therefore, the lack of active noise cancellation shouldn’t be an issue. 

Providing these in-ear monitors fit properly, they have the potential to provide a minimum of -15dB external noise reduction. 

Comfort and Fit

For affordable, non-molded in-ear monitors, the ATH-E40 is surprisingly comfortable. The earbud-style design means that they can be pushed into the ear and secured without causing tension. 

You can also remove the ear inserts and replace them with a set that better fit your ear dimensions, which is great for people who struggle to find the right balance between security and comfort when wearing in-ear headphones. 

When drumming, you need to feel confident that you can move around without your in-ear monitors coming loose, which could be a disaster if you’re using click tracks or backing tracks. 

Thankfully, these Audio Technica in-ear monitors also come with moldable wires, which make it easier to customize the fit. You can place the wires over your ears, adding another layer of reinforcement. 

Build Quality

Durability is another important quality for in-ear monitors, particularly if you intend to use them often. There’s always a chance that you might drop them, step, or sit on them accidentally. 

Audio Technica has used a bulky chassis to protect the vital inner components of the E40 in-ear monitors. Some may argue that this makes them look less attractive, but it certainly makes them more roadworthy. 

You should still try to take as much care as possible when using in-ear monitors, but the ATH-E40 should be able to withstand the inevitable wear and tear that occurs when performing on the road. 

The physical design of these in-ear monitors also makes them less likely to break. You can remove the ¼ inch adaptor, and a gold-plated mini plug ensures a strong and reliable connection to the cables. 

These in-ear monitors come with a 1.6m cable with a right-angled mini plug connector. 

A2DC Connector

One of the most interesting aspects of the Audio Technica ATh-E40 in-ear monitors is their unique A2DC connectors. 

Designed to overcome the drawbacks of conventional MMCX connectors, the A2DC locks in place more robustly and makes it more difficult for the cable to rotate while it is being used. 

Connector rotation can result in brief disconnections, which is not ideal when you’re performing with in-ear monitors. Audio Technica has added another layer of security by reducing the potential for rotation. 

The ATh-E40 in-ear monitors are one of many devices that Audio Technica now uses A2DC connectors with. 


Despite being the entry-level in-ear headphones from Audio Technica’s E Series, the ATH E40 perform exceptionally well. They’re great value for drummers who need a clear mix of different instruments and vocal tracks when performing. 

When you analyze these in-ear monitors, it’s difficult to pinpoint any weaknesses they have. They’re solid all-rounders that deliver a balanced frequency output, with a pronounced midrange. 

Furthermore, the ATh-E40 in-ear monitors are durable enough to be used by touring drummers. They also come with all of the attachments, cables, and earpieces you need to ensure they fit properly.

What Comes In The Audio Technica ATH-E40 In-Ear Monitors Box?

In the Audio Technica ATH-E40 box, you can expect to find a 1.6m cable with a gold-plated, right-angled mini plug. You’ll also get a set of four silicone ear tips that vary in size to choose the best fit for your ears. 

  • ATH-E40 monitors
  • 1.6m long cable
  • 4x silicone tips
  • Instruction manual

Audio Technica ATH-E40 In-Ear Monitors At A Glance


  • Wide frequency response for all instrument and vocal styles
  • Comes with multiple ear tip sizes to ensure security and comfort
  • Innovative A2DC connector is more reliable than typical varieties
  • Reduces the volume of external noise


  • Bulky housing makes the in-ear monitors more visible when worn
  • No active noise consolation or isolation
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