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Can the ATH-M50 bass be tamed?

post #1 of 13
Thread Starter 

 

From everything that I have been reading over the past couple of (insert years here) the ATH-M50 are a very doesn't set of cans but the main complain comes in that the bass on the is overwhelming for a lot of people, that they are way too deep and bassy for a lot of people.  Is this true?  Is there a way to counteract this in your normal run of the mill Windows 7?
 
 
For reference this is what I have been using for the past (I think) 6 years:
 
 
The ATH-M50s seem to be the best for the price, but I don't want to be overwhelmed by bass that will destroy anything but deep techno and trance.
post #2 of 13

the bass is fine. it is strong, but far from what one generally would expect regarding too much bass, especially if you come from a labtec headphone or have not hear many other higher quality headphones.

 

Just get it and enjoy and hear for yourself. If you read too much impressions and too much into what ppl say about any particular phone, you would see the same criticism about bass/mid/high of $1000+ cans... and how ppl buy $500 cables, $1000 tube amps and 5 different mods to tame a certain aspect of them...

 

Plus, good bass and high, pretty good for technos....


Edited by mikop - 11/21/10 at 9:09pm
post #3 of 13

I play trance through my iPod + ATH-M50s (un-amped) and the bass is nice and tight.  I don't find it overwhelming at all.  In fact I've read comments where some people didn't think the M50s were bassy enough.  For me it's perfect.  Try it with Heavens Trance #67 track 3 (free podcast on iTunes).  With the M50s you will hear lows in your music you never thought was there.  Rather than destroy it, it enhances it.  YMMV.   

post #4 of 13

I couldn't do much to tame it. EQ didn't seem to work well, and neither did the tape mod that will probably be linked to soon by somebody. Actually, the bass itself wasn't the problem, it was the way it bled into the lower midrange that I didn't like. There was a lot of upper bass/lower mid bloat, and it made everything sound thick, slow, and murky, IMO. Of course badmouthing such a highly revered headphone here on Head-Fi might be considered blasphemy, and I'll fully submit that this is down to personal preference--on technical merits, the M50 is quite good. I just didn't care for the tonal presentation, which was what sunk the deal for me.

 

I agree that it's definitely a headphone most people should try, as most people like more bass than I do and are a little less averse to the M50-style sonic signature--one Head-Fi'er's dull and murky is another Head-Fi'er's warm and smooth.

 

I like a neutral-to-bright tonal balance, BTW, just to put this in perspective.

post #5 of 13

If you think the M50 has too much bass, you shouldn't be getting a closed back. You are not going to find a lot of closed back with less bass than the M50.

post #6 of 13

The K271 has very little bass and is closed back.  It sounds similar to the way the K701 is balanced.  Except the mids sound better IMO. 

post #7 of 13

There is an article on headfonia comparing 2010 M50's to older M50's. The article said that there is a difference. The 2010 model is less laid back and the bass is punchier among other things. I don't think they mentioned anything about bass quantity (someone can correct me).  I have the 2010 model, and I can say that the bass is not overpowering at all. I actually EQ the bass up a bit on Foobar. 

post #8 of 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by neato View Post

There is an article on headfonia comparing 2010 M50's to older M50's. The article said that there is a difference. The 2010 model is less laid back and the bass is punchier among other things. I don't think they mentioned anything about bass quantity (someone can correct me).  I have the 2010 model, and I can say that the bass is not overpowering at all. I actually EQ the bass up a bit on Foobar. 



I could be wrong (I might have to go read it again) but I got the impression that this article is about burn-in vs batch differences and not about a supposed new run of the M50. I don't think Headfonia intended anybody to generalize from those two samples that Audio-Technica has somehow altered the design, though I'm seeing this conclusion pop up quite a bit.

post #9 of 13

I recently bought a new pair of M50's I thought they sounded the same as my last pair.  Though I may have bought my last pair in 2010 as well...

post #10 of 13

The funny thing is, a lot of HFers are arguing that the old M50 is bassier than the newer one.

 

Try searching for the tape mod, most people find that to be the best way to tame the bass for M50, and is completely reversible.

post #11 of 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by Argyris View Post



Quote:
Originally Posted by neato View Post

There is an article on headfonia comparing 2010 M50's to older M50's. The article said that there is a difference. The 2010 model is less laid back and the bass is punchier among other things. I don't think they mentioned anything about bass quantity (someone can correct me).  I have the 2010 model, and I can say that the bass is not overpowering at all. I actually EQ the bass up a bit on Foobar. 



I could be wrong (I might have to go read it again) but I got the impression that this article is about burn-in vs batch differences and not about a supposed new run of the M50. I don't think Headfonia intended anybody to generalize from those two samples that Audio-Technica has somehow altered the design, though I'm seeing this conclusion pop up quite a bit.

 

Ah batch differences. Ya, you might be right. They didn't really specify a new model all together. Well, in that case just take into account the last two sentences of my post. 
 

post #12 of 13

Burn in and getting used to the sound signature will "tame" the bass. What gear you have in the chain (dac/amp) will also have a bearing.

post #13 of 13

I'm guessing that the new M50s are different because I bought a pair expecting strong bass, yet much of the time I want a slightly more dominant bass. Though I must say, it's very tight and accurate.

 

Unless you have a low tolerance for bass, I think you'll be good.

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