i found the original pads to be 100% intolerable. i did the "softie mod", pushing the stock pads to their very limit and still i couldnt wear them for more than an hour, and even that was stretching it a bit. with the new pads, it went up to and hour and a half. however, i have since done the "softie mod" to the new pads, only without the softies as they wouldnt fit around the XLs, and comfort is no longer an issue. if pressed, id give it a 7/10. i assume (as do some others) that my ears are simply freakish... while they dont look abnormal at a glance, the m-100 have made it quite clear to me that my anti-helix protrudes out way more than most, particularly with my left ear. so to sum it up, comfort wise the XL pads have made a huge difference. true, i had to mod them as well, but 5 minutes of my time is quite alright as far as im concerned.
as for sonic differences, no, they are not "as dramatic". noticeable, but hardly night and day:
the biggest difference imo is the soundstage, which opened wide to my ears, making a noticeable difference right from the start. the rest of the differences were more subtle.
like most people here, i feel the mid bass was mitigated, clearing the way for a more pronounced sub bass (probably due to the better seal, as others have speculated). this was a very welcome change as far as im concerned, since sub bass is what its all about for me =]
i do feel the mids took half a step back, but this was hardly a dramatic difference to me, infact, it took me a while to notice, and with some songs i cant even tell. i wont say anything about the highs since my hearing is very easily fatigued and i eq the highs quite a bit. however, i do still use the original eq settings i saved for the stock pads, that in itself may suggest something.
in conclusion, i do feel the XLs have changed the signature, but i dont feel that "they have lost their edge" or any of those unkind things other people say. i see the XL sound as an isotope (im such a nerd) of the original m-100 sound. still the m-100, just a slightly different one. one that i can wear without suffering
sounds about right to me
Yes. Long story short, I believe it is fair to say that the comfort benefits of the XL pads are far more significant and outweigh any perceived sonic changes.
The bass still blows away Momentum, MDR-1R, P5, D600, etc.
Edited by Craigster75 - 10/23/13 at 2:58pm