Originally Posted by tengen
The burn-in must be the trick. The M50s were demo units (very used), but when I requested other recommendations they pulled out other stuff new from the box, a DT770 80ohm and Shure SRH840 - Price point aside, I'd rank the Shures > M50 > DT770 > HD280(?). For some reason I didn't like the HD280 sound too much, can't exactly describe it. It's very different, but can't say I dislike it, so it gets a tentative question mark.
I don't really believe in burn in much, but it proved to be true in the case of the DT770s. I was ready to box them back up and get a refund but decided on at least trying to burn them in and give them a chance. I'm glad I did. They are now my FAVORITE headphone, even besting the DT880s for me. The DT880s are of a higher quality and standard, but I like the fun sound the DT770s have. They are awesome with movies and video games. I prefer the DT880s with video games because of their awesome soundstage and accurate representation, but they are a balanced beast, and I prefer more of a bassy, fun headphone for most things.
I too had a severe dislike for the HD280s. I borrowed my friend's well used HD280, and didn't like anything about them ESPECIALLY their eye popping clamping force. They were absolutely hurtful to wear.
To be on topic, the M50s are probably my 3rd fave headphone in sound after the DT770 and XB700s. I prefer the sound of the M50s over the DT880. That's saying a lot.