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Shootout: 114 Portable Headphones Reviewed (Xiaomi Mi Headphones added 04/21/2015) - Page 62

post #916 of 4545

I'm one of those that just doesn't hear much difference in amping the M50. I can hear the characteristics of the amp, but no "improvement" in the headphone per se. Of course, the sound signature just isn't for me (I love my mids, and the M50 simply doesn't deliver that for me), so maybe I didn't give it much of a chance. I'll stick with my Phiatons for now biggrin.gif

post #917 of 4545

You found the M50 to have a good soundstage? That must mean other portables have terrible soundstage, because I find the M50 to have a claustrophobic feel to them. On the other hand, my main headphone is the A700, which is my favourite by far, and has the best soundstage I've heard so far in a closed heapdhone.

post #918 of 4545
Thread Starter 

Quote:

Originally Posted by Ntropic View Post

You found the M50 to have a good soundstage? That must mean other portables have terrible soundstage, because I find the M50 to have a claustrophobic feel to them. On the other hand, my main headphone is the A700, which is my favourite by far, and has the best soundstage I've heard so far in a closed heapdhone.



Actually as a general rule that is true. The HD25, which is my benchmark for most things, has no soundstage at all. Of the three top highly portable cans (ESW9A, MS400, HD25) the ESW9A performs best - it sounds pretty wide but still had a definite 'closed' feel and does tend to center things in the listener's head instead of using its entire soundstage. Of the bigger cans I think the Denon HP700 performs pretty well but it still sounds only slightly airier and more evenly-spaced than the M50. I think the Ultrasone PRO650 has the largest stage I've heard from a closed can, but then it's a distant-sounding headphone in general and not very portable. That and it still sounds pretty small compared to my K601.


Edited by ljokerl - 11/13/10 at 12:09am
post #919 of 4545

Are the ATH-M50s portable enough to be used to/from class and some light travelling? Is the length of the cord or the weight of the headphones a problem when it comes to portability?

post #920 of 4545


 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ntropic View Post

You found the M50 to have a good soundstage? That must mean other portables have terrible soundstage, because I find the M50 to have a claustrophobic feel to them.


I felt the M50s had very poor soundstage as well. Not quite claustrophobic (I'd had JBL headphones that were worse), but definitely boxed in.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by faideelah View Post

Are the ATH-M50s portable enough to be used to/from class and some light travelling? Is the length of the cord or the weight of the headphones a problem when it comes to portability?


The coiled cord version would be more portable. Having 10 feet of straight cord is just asking for an accident while walking around unless you can tie it up. That said, the M50 is reasonably portable. It's durable and the cups can fold flat so they don't jam into your neck/chin when wearing it around your neck. The weight would only become an issue after wearing it for a long time.


Edited by Armaegis - 11/13/10 at 11:59am
post #921 of 4545
Thread Starter 


Quote:

Originally Posted by faideelah View Post

Are the ATH-M50s portable enough to be used to/from class and some light travelling? Is the length of the cord or the weight of the headphones a problem when it comes to portability?



It depends on how much weight and cord length you can tolerate. The M50 is not something I'd wear while jogging, etc but it's okay for a short walk. The coiled cord is a bit unwieldy - I would personally be tempted to go for the straight cord and coil up the extra length in my jacket pocket with a velcro strap but size- and weight-wise they aren't so bad.

post #922 of 4545

ljokerl -

 

Did you have the white boxed version of the M50 or the black box with the flap? I'm guessing the white. Your score is fair, but I think if a blind test was done between the two versions (i'm not suggesting this!) the black version would come with a very slightly lower score for sound maybe.

 

I'd give my black box version an 8/10 for sound. For comparison I'd give the SRH-840 an 8.5 and my k240 maybe a 9.

 

For those of you that felt the M50 had a somewhat poor soundstage, did you have the black or white boxed version? Mine has a poor soundstage and was the black version. I got it at Guitar Center and it had a straight cable. Imaging was pretty bad too.

 

I also found that my M50 had rolled off highs. The highs are actually more rolled off than the SRH-840!! Other than the bass, the sound was VERY non fatiguing. My first pair also had way too much bass and it wasn't very well controlled. Vocals were a bit distant and hard to hear at times and not just in bass heavy music. This is why I sold mine.

 

Maybe it could be that very minor changes were made. I got in the white boxed version and I noticed the highs were way more extended. I'm very sensitive to high frequencies and the white pair fatigued my ears very fast and I couldn't believe it. I didn't notice any other changes really since I only got a chance to try them for 15 minutes. Actually, I was kind of shocked to find that I had to put the volume at 100% on my Ipod Touch unamped to get a decent volume level. I don't remember having to do this with my black version, but I did use them mostly amped.  

 

If you had the white version, maybe this could be why they benefit more from an amp. No, I don't mean to say it just makes them louder. Maybe the white version is a tad harder to drive to sound great. I can't imagine they could be changed this much though, but who knows!

 

 

post #923 of 4545
Thread Starter 

Actually I haven't a clue - I bought them used. My hearing is good until about 16.5k and the M50 follows through pretty well - tested it with 20/20 sweeps. It's not as strong as my MS2i was and I think the Denons are a little more extended as well but it does capture what little information will be up that high in normal music. I've never tried the K240 or SRH840 but remember - my scale is relative and not universal and as it stands there's (probably) something out there capable of scoring more than a 10/10. I know that a 9/10 seems high but it really isn't on a comparative scale that encompasses lo-fi sets as well. Yes, it's the same as the HD25, but I don't like everything about the HD25, either. 

 

Regarding amping, perhaps I overstated the need for one. I like them just fine out of my J3 and S:Flo2 but those are powerful players. I was just puzzled at people saying that there was no benefit to amping the M50 as it clearly sounded narrower and more v-shaped out of my sansa clip than when juiced properly.

post #924 of 4545

Aha the M50 is finally out :) IMO the M50 is not that portable when I had the coiled version. I'd imagine the straight cable isn't pretty either with portable use with that 10 foot or so cable. I did like that you could fold them up but it still took up too much space than I wanted them for portable use. They do need an amp imo if you use a source that isn't very powerful like say my ipod shuffle. I found that they do scale up better but didn't sound horrible out of my J3 but just not as good as they could.

post #925 of 4545
Quote:
Originally Posted by rawrster View Post

Aha the M50 is finally out :) IMO the M50 is not that portable when I had the coiled version. I'd imagine the straight cable isn't pretty either with portable use with that 10 foot or so cable. I did like that you could fold them up but it still took up too much space than I wanted them for portable use. They do need an amp imo if you use a source that isn't very powerful like say my ipod shuffle. I found that they do scale up better but didn't sound horrible out of my J3 but just not as good as they could.



I agree, I have the coiled version. It isnt that portable. An portable amp does help with portable devices

post #926 of 4545

Love your review of the M50, my experience with mine is very similar to yours.

 

I also find them a bit more powerhungry than other people's impression, and I usually prefer using them amped. I can also agree with the comment on the soundstage, I can't quite remember my old black boxed since I sold it, but the new white box do feel a bit more spacious, could be impressions playing with my mind though.

 

And Joker, I've recently traded for a S900, would you be interested in doing a review on them? I can let you borrow the headphones for the review.

post #927 of 4545

Nice M50 review which pretty much echoes my feelings on them. They're a really great pair of headphones, all things considered and I really can't find much fault with them.

 

Having said that, seeing as you gave the HD25s the same sound score, which sound signature do you prefer, or is it about even between the two?

post #928 of 4545

I think I've found another good budget headphone that's very overlooked.

About 8 months ago I bought a pair of Shure SRH-240s at Best Buy for $30. My first thought was..how could all that plastic be only $30 and still sound good?

I really liked them and ended up giving them away when I bought my SRH-840's.

 

Today at my mom's house I compared the SRH-240 vs her UR-55 and the SRH-240 was clearly better in most areas, but of course had much less bass.

The isolation was very good. With her TV on and the ipod not playing I couldn't even hear a thing she was saying to me!

 

I think this is one headphone that may be just as good as the DHP-II and DT-235. Unfortunately they raised the price and they're now $47 online.

 

The SRH-240 also has a different design than the SRH-440 and 840. It's comfortable and has a good fit. They're still a large headphone, but much smaller than the 440 and 840.

 

This whole time I thought my mom was listening to the UR-55s the most since she kept saying she was listening to "the small pair"?! Turns out it was the SRH-240.

 

I wonder if anyone here has compared the SRH-240 with the DT-235 and DHP-II? Those may be some of the best headphones under $50. SRH-240 is the least portable though.

 

Trying to find a good headphone for when I start up my exercise again. Probably the DHP-II for now since they're so light.

 

It's funny to think that nearly 5 or 6 years ago I had used (and liked) the Bose Triports for exercise! They're light, small and comfortable, so maybe that's why. Maybe i'd hate them if I heard them again.

post #929 of 4545

Hey joker,

 

Are you going to review the AIAIAI TMA-1? I'm interested in knowing how they stack up against the HD 25 ii.

post #930 of 4545

A review on the HD428 and HD448 would be nice. :)

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