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ATH-M50s Review

A Review On: Audio-Technica ATH-M50S

Audio-Technica ATH-M50S

Rated # 5 in Over-Ear
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Price paid: $119.99
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Pros: Mids sound great, doesn't require an amp, balanced sound.

Cons: Bass isn't as punchy as I wanted, trebles get a bit trilly and sharp at high volumes, needs 40+ hours of burn-in.

I know there are too many reviews for these cans, but I thought I should put out my 2 cents. Keep in mind these are my first set of "real" headphones, as before this, the highest I shelled out was $79 for a set of Astro IEMs, which no one here has probably heard of. Anyway, let's begin.


Design These just look amazing. They're slick, and the circular metal ring on each of the earcups looks great and adds that "expensive" look. I wouldn't mind being caught wearing these in public, and they look better than Beats, at least in my opinion. The DJ articulation is nice, as I DJ at a lot of school events. The only flaw with the design is the huge Audio-Technica written on the band. Not a major issue, rest assured, but I feel it takes away from the look just a bit.


Price : Quality Ratio I've auditioned some of the other headphones offered by Sennheiser and V-Moda just above this price range, and I can easily, without a doubt, state that these are the best headphones you will find at a $100-$199 price range, and I think many of the other Head-Fi'ers will agree. If you're looking for cheap headphones that can perform, pull the trigger on Audio Technica.


Comfort: I have a quite small head, so the tight clench feels nice for me. Many of the others review state comfort as an issue, and that the pleather gets sweaty. An easy fix-up is to just buy different pads, and break them in as you would break in a baseball glove. Don't smack it with a ball, just stretch them out over a box slightly larger than your head during burn-in.


Sound Quality


First Impressions: I didn't bother to burn these in, I was too eager to see why this was the number one headphone at it's price range. I put them on my head, plugged them in unamped to my 4S, and I was immediately in shock. They sounded barely any different from my Skullcandy FMJ buds. I decided it was time to give in and burn them in for a good 48 hours.


After Burn-In: It was a night and day difference from the pre-burn in state. The soundstage widely improved, but it was still outplayed by some open ear cans I've heard. The sound signature itself is warm and balanced. They can't handle volume very well, as once it enters the higher volumes, treble gets very sharp, mids get a bit recessed, and the bass doesn't become all that much more present than it usually does at higher volumes. Keep in mind, these are monitor headphones, so they were built for recording and mixing. They will have a very flat-as-a-ruler sound, so EQ-ing for different genres is going to be needed for good sound. The "Rock" equalizer on my 4S seemed to clear things up for most genres, so I find myself using that a lot. Overall, these sound great, with clear trebles, great mids, and clean bass. I even got one of my friends with Beats Pro to say they were great. Most people with those horrible things usually try to justify their purchase by saying everything else is horrible.


Bottom Line If you're looking for cheap headphones with relatively great sound quality compared to other headphones in its price range, take a look at these. They can be bought at $119 at SoundProfessionals.com, so check them out - they even have burned-in, yet new, M50s for sale.


Bass: Clean and crisp, but not as punchy as I'd like.

Mids: Can be recessed at high volumes, excels everywhere else.

Highs: Only problem with the highs is that they get very sharp at high volumes.

Soundstage: Not the best, but it's decent.


tl;dr Amazing quality for the price, burn them in before judging the sound. No need for an amp.


Thanks for reading my review, I'll catch you on the flipside.



1 Comment:

re: burn in, you are saying 40 hours of "pink" noise then?
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