After spending some time with modded MDR-1R I believe this modification deserved its own thread.
So, here it goes.
In my opinion the not so apparent but nonetheless nagging issue with MDR-1R is not very well controlled mid bass that extends into and muddies midrange. The phones feel "loose" and slightly veiled in mids. Well, almost the same problem Fostex Denons had. Extreme Dynamat worked pretty well for those so I've tried the same approach on Sonys and it worked wonders.
So a quick break down on the mod:
1) Remove earpad by inserting thin plastic spatula or something similar between earpad and cup rim at 9 or 3 o'clock. The earpads are hold in place on plastic clips, you need to unlock just one by pressing on it and the rest comes off easily. Just be careful and don't break the clips. This picture should help to visualize where the pressure should be applied
2) You need small philips screwdriver to unscrew driver from the cup.
3) Cut a corresponding size circle from dynamat, you can experiment with paper first to find the proper size that fits inside the cup. Put dynamat into freezer before cutting, that makes it much easier to work with.
4) Remove backing paper from dynamat and apply to the inside of cup. Now, thoroughly massage that circle so it sticks really good and there are no air bubbles left between dynamat and cup. Take your time, you can use solid round object like butt of a big screwdriver or just your thumb.
5) Screw the driver back to the ear cup, watch for the wire and small red rubber washers that go on cup's swivels (you can see them on the picture below).
6) Attach earpad back, seam should point down. It just clips on easily, make sure to go around to "click" each clip to lock.
7) Do the same on the second cup.
You can order Extreme Dynamat from here http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00020CATC/ref=wms_ohs_product?ie=UTF8&psc=1
The final product.
This Russian web site has a lot of detailed pictures of MDR-1R internals, that should help too
- Well, to my ears the biggest difference from stock MDR-1R is the clarity, they sound much more detailed and crisp, the bass gains the control it needs and doesn't float all around but hits hard and precise.
Modded, I can't think of better portable phones that can work straight out of portable and deliver that level of details and enjoyment, of course personal preferences do apply but I am just a sucker for lush mids and romanticized, laid back presentation of those, and now with details retrievals and controls they deserved they are truly a gem.
The mod is fully reversible, but I honestly don't know what should happen to reverse it back to stock. Have fun.
EDIT: While there you can also apply some silicon or graphite on hinges to eliminate squeaking.
Edited by Andrew_WOT - 6/29/13 at 6:21am