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POLL: ATH-M50 vs Shure SRH840

post #1 of 31
Thread Starter 

I think I'm down to these two...

 

Which one is preferred by head-fi users?

post #2 of 31

tough question.

here's how it breaks down for me (pluses and minuses)

 

M50 pluses

deep, impactful bass

$100 price tag (usually)

rugged build

somewhat comfortable

 

M50 minuses

slightly etched treble

slightly recessed mid

sweaty ears (pleather pads)

 

srh840 pluses

removable cable

excellent build quality

balanced sound

nice bass

 

srh840 minuses

$200 price tag (usually)

not particularly comfortable

slightly strident upper mid / lower treble

sweaty ears (pleather pads)

 

 

hope that helps.

 

personally, i'd pick the srh840, as the m50's recessed mids can sometimes be an issue for me... 

 

funny thing about the m50, when i first heard it, it sounded very forward in the mids, and with very strong bass, and very dark, rolled off treble.  and i really liked the sound.

as i've put 150 to 200 hours on it, the treble has come out, and the mids have gone away somewhat...  so, whether burn-in is real or not, my perception of the m50 has worsened...

 

i can't honestly say yet with the srh840, but with only 50 hours or so on this headphone, it is immediately more balanced and sounds slightly more resolving...

somewhat like the k701, the upper mid can sometimes have a bit of glare.  so volume level is kind of critical.  at loud volumes, some vocal parts will jump out a bit too much...

 

cheers!


Edited by TheWuss - 7/19/10 at 9:59am
post #3 of 31

bump.

wow... no one else gonna weigh in?

post #4 of 31
Quote:
Originally Posted by TheWuss View Post

bump.

wow... no one else gonna weigh in?


Sure, I'll help you out... 

 

Yeah, pretty much what TheWuss said, 'cept for a couple things.

SRH840 were not "not particularly comfortable" for me. They were downright painful. Goodbye.

I do agree that they are the more 'neutral' of the two, though they have their own issues. I thought they were a bit light on the deep bass. 

 

I find the M50's very comfortable. I just had them on for a stretch, no sweat, no discomfort... but then again... I'm in cool coastal CA. 

But alas, the M50's are not great in the upper mids, where there is a recession going on. So you'll find some tonality lacking. My only gripe about their sound... and it's very minor.

But I don't care. I love these babies. Some have complained about 'metalic' highs. I've never heard that. Might be the source files too... don't know.

As for break-in... mine have improved as the bloat in the bass has gone away completely. 

 

Good luck.

 

shane

post #5 of 31

Was trying out m50 and shr840 before i decided on the m50 to buy though.

 

First and one of the most important aspect for me is comfortability. the 840s is downright uncomfortable after a period, hence m50 win in this aspect.

 

In terms of sound signature, both headphones gave me great amount of details from my sound files. I am really amazed how good these 2 headphones are sound wise. The difference though is that the 840 sound tends to be warmer with slightly fuller vocals(or the upper mid) section, but somewhat lacking the high treble thatusually "beautify" the whole package, like lets say a big fat christmas tree with less decoration. The m50 instead have better upper treble to me, though the vocal are a bit recessed(only if you compare to 840, as to me it sounds full enough).

 

Bass Wise I heard many people saying m50 have strong bass here and strong bass there, which might put off excessive-bass-hater. But I will strongly strongly disagree with that. Ask any Bass head they will tell u m50 have weak bass so do the 840. IMHO both do not have excessive bass, except the m50 have the sub-bass. Now this makes the m50 able to depict bass structure better than the 840 (in simpler term the m50's bass sounds more realistic than 840) in fact i would say 840 and m50 is recessed in the bass area, but because the m50 have the sub-bass , it depict bass sounds that is more "real" to me, espescially if u listened to a recording of the instrument double bass playing(it sounded pretty thin in 840). I hope i made a strong point to the bass-part here.

 

Sorry for the broken english and this is just my view, feel free to comment too.

post #6 of 31

Can't say anything on the Shures.  But I own the M50's and I love them also.  Very comfy.  Bass is nice.  It doesn't seem overwhelming to me.  After some burn in it seems to really settle down to my ears.  Besides if you are not a fan of bass you could always eq it down a little in the lower frequencies.  They respond pretty well to eq.

post #7 of 31
Quote:
Originally Posted by TheWuss View Post

bump.

wow... no one else gonna weigh in?


Hey Mr.The Wuss, 

(Sorry to hijack this thread) How does the SRH840 compare to the DT990/600?

post #8 of 31
Quote:
Originally Posted by mralexosborn View Post

Hey Mr.The Wuss, 

(Sorry to hijack this thread) How does the SRH840 compare to the DT990/600?


short answer:  it doesn't

 

long answer:

it depends on what kind of sound you want.

the dt990 is an acquired taste.  and the srh840 does very little technically "wrong".

but, the dt990 has never bored me once.  and the srh840 is borderline clinical sounding, to me at least.

 

besides them being closed and open, they are also low impedance (shures) and high impedance (beyers).  the beyers, i find, scale up with source and amp very well.  the shures continue to sound like themselves...

which tells me the beyers are a more enduring headphone in my collection.

 

hope that helps.
 

post #9 of 31

Funny thing: The M50 is very comfortable on my head. My ears don't sweat, they are about five degrees Celsius warmer by estimate. They have a good amount of clamp without being painful, as I've said before, the pads feel like stale marshmallows, which is good. Firm, yet fitting. 

 

The M50 is a "fun" sounding pair of phones which will not do every genre equally. People say they aren't good for rock, but I can enjoy my alternative rock. Maybe it's due to my untrained ears, but the bass makes the drums sound amazing and the treble enhances the cymbals. Guitars blend into the background (which is either good or bad), and depending on the singer, the sound is very warm and mellow, great to listen to, or quiet, shallow, and liquid. My experience is highly positive, though. The treble and detail on these headphones are very good, without being sibilant. Mids are recessed, but still enjoyable. To give you an idea of their sound I'll try to describe their impact with the song "Chances" by Five For Fighting, since it's playing.

 

Bass: The bass is definitely there and adds flavour to the listening experience. Although it's quite a low rumble, you can hear it well and certainly feel it without it encroaching on the mids. The drum hits are quite punchy, but not too much so. 

 

Mids: You can hear the singer's voice very well, somewhat textured. Overall, nothing special but a great experience. Then again, I'm not particularly trained. Piano comes out very clearly. 

 

High: Cymbals stand out in their natural sounding, er, sounds. Higher notes are clear, without distortion. Not the best song to talk about the amazing treble of these headphones.

 

That is my impression, in the end, the bass and treble really make these enjoyable with rock and even more so with bass heavy tunes. Please, experts, contribute. 

post #10 of 31

If you haven't looked at them yet, check out the SRH 750s. They're cheaper than the 840s (I got them for around 90 off ebay) and if you have budget of 200, you can get these and the M50s. Some people prefer the 750s over the 840s, I think they're a little different so it would be up to your individual taste. 

post #11 of 31
Quote:
Originally Posted by TheWuss View Post


short answer:  it doesn't

 

long answer:

it depends on what kind of sound you want.

the dt990 is an acquired taste.  and the srh840 does very little technically "wrong".

but, the dt990 has never bored me once.  and the srh840 is borderline clinical sounding, to me at least.

 

besides them being closed and open, they are also low impedance (shures) and high impedance (beyers).  the beyers, i find, scale up with source and amp very well.  the shures continue to sound like themselves...

which tells me the beyers are a more enduring headphone in my collection.

 

hope that helps.
 


I am guessing by the terms you used you are in favor of the DT990? So they are more revealing of the source and are not boring. How do these do with hip hop, rap, or electronic music? I have read they have decent bass but do the powerful highs affect the overall sound? 

 

Also if you don't mind: How do the DT880's compare to the DT990's?


Edited by mralexosborn - 8/22/10 at 6:31pm
post #12 of 31

heck...  if you're listening to rap and electronic, then why not just go for the M50 and save some dough?

they're a great bargain...

i used to think the shure was slightly better.  but, now i'm not so "shure".  pun intended.

the m50 continues to surprise me, now that i've had it several months...

 

the dt880 vs. dt990 thing.  it's sort of  at this point. 

they are quite similar...

 

but i prefer the dt990.  it has more bass.

post #13 of 31

Bah, I am thinking what headphones to upgrade to after I get my MS1's . I am not so "Shure" about getting the Shure's or the M50. From what I have read the SRH840 is clinical sounding, and the M50 is just a FOTM and truly isn't that good. But I don't know. I heard Beyer's are good for the genres listed.

 

Good use of the .

post #14 of 31

Faced with the same choice, I got the M50 a few days ago, and the just sound amazing. I was used to a analytical sound from my IEMs, but my M50 has been even better. They really bring the music to life, and if you do the tape mod, the vocals get even better. At $110, I also saved a ton of dough and have no regrets about not picking the Shures, Beyers, or any others.

post #15 of 31
Quote:
Originally Posted by mralexosborn View Post

 the M50 is just a FOTM and truly isn't that good. But I don't know.


I think the M50 has been around long enough to avoid the FOTM moniker.  

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