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PSB M4U1 - Thoughts?

Discussion in 'Headphones (full-size)' started by swmtnbiker, Nov 13, 2012.
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  1. curtisngl
    Whew, I just replaced about 5 albums that had files floating around 200 Kbps and it was not fun. Much more to do. Anyway, I won't quote because of the length of the posts, so a few things: I like the fact of clean audio and if the bass is better than skullcandy's aviators (if you had the misfortune to listen to them), then the psb should be good. What you were trying to describe with the soundstage sounds exactly like what I love. A wide soundstage is great, but more importantly, I want to be immersed. I've rarely experienced that. IMO, RATMs songs don't quite have the complexity for good testing. Could you give me some songs that the psb do great with? I'll give you this to test: the who eminence front. Very complex with intricate little sounds. It sounds good in my se215s, but the tiny drivers sometimes struggle when the vocals come in. Another thing is that most of the time I'll listen to headphones unamped. Of course amps are helpful, but I'd prefer an efficient headphone whenever possible. About the hp100, mids are important to me, they're apparently a bit v shaped. I'll probably add another post after I Re-read stuff, but after all of that file management and replacing, I need a break.
  2. Jeff Y
    Anyone possibly able to compare it to Martin Logan Mikro 90s?
  3. Zenthelld
    I haven't heard the Aviators so I can't compare. I've never found the bass in the PSBs to really be lacking though, and what is there is of good quality. It's also worth mentioning that, while I said about how I use mine with an amp and a digital bass boost, the PSBs are very efficient and get nice bass just from a digital bass boost as well. In fact from my experience they're efficient enough to not really gain much at all from a transparent amp. I'll have a listen to that track you mentioned later and let you know how it sounds, though I've not heard the song before.

    As for the HP100s, I suppose they are a little v-shaped, though if I had nothing to compare I probably wouldn't say so. The mids are certainly stronger on the PSBs, maybe slightly forward, it's hard to say.
  4. bgrisso
    I have been looking for a $300-$400 closed headphone for desk and portable use. My main phones for the past 6 years is an etymotic er4p running out of a headroom airhead amp. BUT I'm not always in the mood to wedge something in my ear, so wanted a closed (can't leak in the office) set of over ear headphones with comparable sound.
    Have listened to a ton of phones, I'm not sure that's possible, so anyhow at this point just looking for the best I can get under the criteria....
    Beats Studio - I like the fit and NC but the sound is WAY off for me
    B&O H6 - liked everything about them, very nice, but a little too neutral and very expensive
    B+W P5, P7 - fit was so bad for me didn't even listen to the sound
    Shure 840 - didn't like anything about them. Would be curious to try the 940 and see if they do anything more for me.
    Senn Momentum (over ear) - good sound (not great), maybe a little bassy, earcups are WAY too F%^&ing small, still pretty comfortable and extremely light
    PSB M4U 1 - wow, I fell in the love with the sound. IMO best sound you can get under $300 period. Comfortable. The imaging is outstanding......the momentums feel like you are in a studio apartment in NYC, the PSB feel like you are in a huge living room in California overlooking the pacific. Very lush. BUT they are so f*(&^ing huge and heavy I just can't do it. Almost twice as heavy as the momentums and 10x the size. Probably why the imaging is so good. Basically they have just strapped two loudspeakers to your head. It sounds like it, and looks like it. lol. Almost comical how big they are. I kept trying to talk myself into it because the sound is so good. If I was using at desk only I would do it, but I need portable use sometimes and I'm having to (reluctantly) accept they are just not practical for me. Bummer.
    At this point I'm sticking with the momentums, not because I think they are the best phones ever, but because they have the best mix of features for my criteria.
    I wonder if PSB could make a smaller, lighter phone with the same amazing sound? Can't say enough how much I like the sound, makes me WANT to listen to music just because of them......
  5. curtisngl
    Alright I'm pretty sure I want these now. And thanks with all the help. Does anyone else have anything to say regarding comfort for long term listening? As for what was said about size, it won't matter to me much, because these will be for at home, maybe long car rides if I don't use my se215, and for when I head off to college. Out of curiosity, what color do you have zenthelld? I'm between red or black if I get then
  6. Rcordosi
    Looks and size be damned! I love them for their sound top to bottom. I wear them for hours at work and often forget about them because they sound so good.
    I recently bought a pair or Sennheiser Amperiors to try and could not get over how wonderfully comfortable they felt on my head, but to me, they sounded like junk; compressed mids and sizzley highs that hurt.  They went back.
    bgrisso, you are missing out on a great headphone because of a minor quibble. :wink: How long did you try the M4U's for? The clamping force loosens up after a couple of months. They get much more comfortable and better sounding over time.
  7. bgrisso
    I only tried them for a few days, but I have no problem with the fit now, and I imagine they only get better in terms of comfort and sound. My one issue is for portable use. I don't feel, based on size and weight, that these phones qualify for portable use. I was not exaggerating when I said they weight 2x the momentums (which are a touch over 6 oz and the PSB are touch under 12 oz). And for size, I don't know, I just would laugh if I saw someone wearing these on the street, on a plane, etc. They are huge.
    Obviously you can't sacrifice sound quality past a point, but it's a delicate balancing act between all the variables. I would also reject anything that sounded like junk regardless of how comfortable they were. I'm not familiar with the Amperiors, but the momentums hit a nice sweet spot for me with size, fit, sound, cost, etc. I would rather spend a bit more and get a really nice pair of open, full sized, phones, but that is just not practical because of sound leak.............so, practicalities are a factor.
    Anyhow, cant say enough good things about the PSB M4U 1, so long as the size and weight work for people.
  8. Zenthelld
    Sorry, I completely forgot to try that song you mentioned. I'll try it tonight for you (in about 7-8 hours).

    As for colour, I went for the Arctic Grey ones. I see a lot of black and red around and thought the grey seemed a bit more interesting. The red does look very nice, but I felt it drew even more attention to how much these 'phones look like Beats.

    About the size and weight: The looks did make me frown when I looked in the mirror the first time, but I saw someone wearing a similar pair and he didn't look a fool. Plus the sound easily makes the slightly sub-par style irrelevant. They are somewhat weighty, but it's not like they hurt my head or neck or anything. The only negative effect this really brings to me is the 'feetback' I mentioned before, where footsteps thud in the earcups. Again, the sound overshadows this and it's barely noticeable at decent listening levels.
  9. curtisngl
    Alright. I think that song will sound great considering that the song has a very airy, intricate, and crisp sound that the psb headphones are said to handle well. If it's not inconvenient to you, could you also try re-education(through labor) by Rise Against? That's a good representation of what I listen to the most, and I think you may enjoy it too. I definitely understand where you're coming from with the red looking like beats. I'm not to worried about how I look with them on because I don't think I would walk around with them on my head at least, which also puts the "feetback" out of my worries.

    On my own internet adventures to find out more about the m4u1s, comfort over time seems subjective and so does bass quality.
    If I can wear them for a few hours and the bass has a nice and clean(which everyone agrees to) but respectable punch, these seem perfect.
  10. Zenthelld
    Hey hey! It's catching on : D Yeah I'll try those two tracks out for you in a moment. I haven't heard them before to compare, but I'll try and describe how they sound.
  11. Zenthelld
    Sorry for double post.

    Had a listen to both tracks. Eminence Front by The Who: The PSBs gave every instrument its own place to sound from and so nothing got in the way of each other. As different elements of the song crept in nothing that was already there was neglected. A big part of this is down to the recording obviously, but I think the headphones must be doing the recording justice. The drums especially sound great (as they do in other tracks I listen to) as they have their own space just behind everything else, and when the drum fill comes in before the chorus it's imaged so well it feels like you're sitting just behind the drummer. Everything sounds...real, and because the imaging is so good it's easy to be immersed. Also the vocals are just in front I'd say, close to being in your head. Some people might prefer them more in front, but I quite like it almost being in your head.

    Re-education (through labor) by Rise Against: This shows a different side to the headphones, because the recording and mastering are different (obviously). Here there's less space, but instead you're put right in the thick of it, with the guitarists right next to your ears, the singer in your face and the bass and drums just behind everything else, driving it. Although there's less space in the recording there's still plenty of room and nothing overshadows anything else.

    If there's any specific part or element of either song you want me to go into more depth about, let me know. Thanks for showing me both tracks by the way, I rarely listen to older music, but I think I'll be keeping Eminence Front, if only as a demo track for future testing. I did enjoy the Rise Against track as well, might have to get back into some punk (use to listen to Fugazi and some Dead Kennedys and should try 'em on the PSBs).
  12. curtisngl
    Sure are, everything I read about them drives me even further to buy them.

    That just about covers some of my concerns since as you described with the rise against song, it's more closed in, in your face and it's pretty thick. Sometimes intricate sounds are lost in a songs like this or in other songs where they just spill every instrument into the mix at the breakdown with the last repetitions of the chorus. My aviators, even though they are praised for clarity, are sound cloudy at these points even compared to the se215s and their small drivers. If I like the PSBs as much as everyone else seems to, I might have to go back and listen to music as well, reguardless of whether I even like the song! Thanks again for taking a listen.

    While I generally have optimal quality audio files, some are stuck in a low quality because of their age and no effort to remaster. While these headphones will make the bad quality known, can they still make an obviously crummy that sounds bad no matter what sound decent? Some songs I just can't get better than 192kbps.
  13. Zenthelld
    Well, it'll sound fine, it'll get what detail out of the track that it can, it'll just bring out all the bad bits at the same time. But if you've no other choice for those tracks, and these headphones sound amazing for everything else, what else are you gonna do? Get a cheap pair of headphones that mask the imperfections but also mask all the clarity and detail too?
  14. curtisngl
    Fantastic point. I was hoping for that answer.
  15. Zenthelld
    So, did you get them yet? : )
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