The ATH-WP900 are a very special pair of headphones.
There are a lot of things to love about them, though they do lack some features that other high-end headphones have.
At the heart of the WP900 are a pair of very large 53mm audio drivers that cover both ears and are backed by a powerful magnetic circuit. The diaphragm is covered with diamond-like carbon (DLC), which Audio Technica says helps provide a full-range sound with a very light and impressively clean profile.
The bass profile is deep, nicely shaped and hit with real determination. There's a good amount of sub-bass presence, but it's not a big, thumping kind of low end that will overwhelm you, especially if you're used to more aggressive genres of music.
As a result, these headphones handle rhythms and tempos very well. They also don't give the impression that low-frequency information is going to collapse under its own weight - it's all controlled and firmly expressed, even when they get heavy with funk.
This attention to detail is reflected across the whole spectrum of musical styles they deal with. They're able to convey the finesses of vocalists as idiosyncratic and communicative as Wanda Jackson during Funnel of Love, with every nuance of character and attitude captured perfectly.
Despite their esoteric design and price, the WP900 are a very accomplished set of wired over-ear headphones that can take a pretty good deal of abuse and still stand up to it. They're not the best performers when it comes to handling information-light audio files, but they're much more tolerant of them than you might expect from such a premium pair.