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Sony MDR-ZX300's sound dark and muffled?

post #1 of 9
Thread Starter 

So today i picked up a pair of Sony MDR-ZX300's and i was expecting something much better than from what ive had with my Apple Earpods, i feel like i was sadly mistaken. I plugged them in and the first thing i thought was "what?" They sound a lot less... open? i dont know how to describe it, they sound like muffled, darker, i think it must be that it has low treble or something. I also noticed that it doesnt have much bass, i was expecting bass. Maybe they are made for the lows, and have the mids and highs muffled? im not sure, but i know that i dont really like them. The bass is nothing exciting, the mids sound muffled and like blehh, the highs also sound muffled.

Right now i am playing some COD on pc and i noticed right away that everything just sounds more muffled, less intense; the gunshots sound much more muffled, same goes for explosions, and almost everything else. It is extremely bothering and i dont think i would ever be able to get used to it. I changed my pc EQ to "Powerful" which gives it a little more bass and takes away some of the muffled sound and makes everything just sound more alive. I just switched back to my Apple Earpods and the game just sounds so much more alive! The gunshots sound real again, they are not muffled anymore, the explosions actually explode again, it feels like a dark veil was taken off and it sounds alive again, more so than i ever thought after playing with the Sony's for like half an hour. I also noticed my ears were fatigued when i took off the Sony's, my ears felt relieved like if they were working too hard to listen in game with the sony's on. 

Its crazy, but i genuinely feel that my good old Apple Earpods sound better than my new pair of Sony MDR-ZX300's. The bass on the earpods sound more "there" it has more of a boom and rumble. They sound more "alive." All this leads back to the cause, the Sony's just sound muffled, like they have a dark shade over them, they have less life, i hope you guys understand what i mean. I actually started feeling depressed as i listened to music and played COD with the Sony's on, the bass was dead, the overall sound was dead, muffled.

I just want a pair of headsets that have booming bass when the bass comes in, and are clear, NOT MUFFLED; quality vibrant sound, but again, with booming bass and a rumbling bass when the bass comes into the song or whatever it would be i would listening to. I listen to dubstep, dubstep branch-off's  and some hip hop, and i am a natural born basshead, but i need quality, vibrant, alive sound, meaning not muffled.

Could this just be a defective pair or do i need to burn them in, what do you guys think? Or is that just how they sound and how they always will, if so i am going to return them asap and go back to square one looking for a good pair. Also, if i have to find a new pair, what do you guys think would be a good choice for a pair that has vibrant, clear, open sound, and booming bass when the bass comes in and only when the bass comes in?


Sorry for the long block of text, but i want to describe whats going on in the best detail and convey how upset i am with this pair of trash(cans). Please leave some feedback and such. Thanks in advance!

post #2 of 9
Take them back and get a refund, all the low end ZX's sound bad...
post #3 of 9
Thread Starter 
Originally Posted by TrollDragon View Post

Take them back and get a refund, all the low end ZX's sound bad...

Well that sucks, i was hoping they would sound better after breaking them in. Either way, what would you recommend i get according to what i said i wanted in a pair of headphones near the end of the OP? Ive been thinking of the Sony MDR-X10 for $100, but im not ready to risk $100 just to try them out and possibly not be able to get a refund after i open and try them. Anyone got any recommendations for under $100?

post #4 of 9
The very popular "BassHead" cans around here that get a good recommendation are the M-Audio Q40's, BandH.com had them on for $99 this week.

I use a pair of Ultrasone's for all my electronic music but they are quite a bit more than your listed price.

Do a search for the Q40 thread, I can't link it on the mobile browser.
post #5 of 9
Thread Starter 

Ive been looking around and the Q40's have glowing reviews about its bass, but as i read what they say and what they listen to i cant help but feel that they mean it in a different way, like if the bass is not really a booming, rumble bass, i think i mean a deep bass. I like deep and booming bass, but not overpowering or muffling. But only trying them will have me certain.

Also, what about Sony MDR x10? They are only $100, $60 than the Q40's now, and are known for their bass and the numbers show, http://versus.com/en/m-audio-studiophile-q40-vs-sony-mdr-x10 take a look. What would you say about the Sony X10's?

post #6 of 9

Any reason you want to stay with Sony? The Q40's are good, also check out the V-Moda M80's or Crossfades. Pretty much your choices for under 100.

post #7 of 9
Thread Starter 
No reason, its just that the x10's are made and known for bass, and I just found out that the Q40's are the same price as the X10's so I'm more interested in them now. Ill try the q40's if I can find them in a store for $100 so I can easily return them if I don't like them.

I also just did I think its called the paper mod, I got some tissue bathroom paper and stuffed it inside around the driver to give it more space from the cushions, I can notice a lot more bass, but I lose treble and it sounds even more muffled
post #8 of 9

Perhaps that's because you're not used to the over-ear design? I actually like my ZX300s better than any earbud I've ever heard. I guess it's just a matter of personal taste...?

post #9 of 9

Ok not very experienced here, but I can tell you from the headphones I heard.


I have heard the The Sonys ZX300, ZX600, V55DJ. The AKG K81dj, the Beyer DT235, and If I go from what you say, you might like the K81dj or the ZX600.


My Issue with the K81dj was the comfort, but heavy bass lively midrange and no slouches for your music type. i sold mine as I found the other headphones I owned sounded more balanced and comfortable, but until getting the Sony MDR 7520, they were my bassiest phones.


I only auditioned the sonyZX600 and V55 in a store with my own gear of course but thought of them as v shaped sounding, meaning lots of bass, recessed mids and highs with some sizzle, you know the way alot of people would probably set the eq in their car,  in the shape of a v to emphasize bass and treble, well thats the impression the Sonys gave me.


Now the ZX600, V55, K81dj are all quite a bit less than your $100 price tag so you could maybe give a listen, which is the best advice I can probably give if you have the opportunity to try them.

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