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Sony MDR MA900 Impressions Thread

Discussion in 'Headphones (full-size)' started by lumos, May 8, 2013.
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  1. Sp12er3
    ^I tried the Z1R just the Other day and it improves every aspect of the MA900 have, adding isolation, tremendous bass dynamic & control, clearer detail, whilst still keeping the wide soundstage and analogue sound... Man it IS something as unique as the MA900 for sure.

    @hendricks seriously? How much did you stretch it out? I gotta find a way to fir my Hybrid onto it then
  2. walfredo
    Another MA900? :)
    Anyhow... jokes apart:  I think that open planars may be something to try based on your description.  HiFiMan HE400, HE500 and their new versions should be in consideration.  Keep in mind they are bit harder to drive, though.
    vcmusik likes this.
  3. vcmusik
    There's also the Monoprice Monolith M560 and M1060, which I've been seeing positive reviews about. But your joke is actually somewhat valid, if Hailin is interested in maximizing the potential of the MA900, there's the resistor-bypass mod which I've had done with the help of a friend, that really helps improve the sound. In addition, the there's also the possibility of replacing the stock cable and making it a balanced connection. I haven't done that yet but am planning to in the future. 
  4. walfredo
  5. walfredo
    Hum... interested!!  Do you have a link to resistor bypass mod?  How does it change the MA900?
  6. vcmusik
    Here you go! For me, the stock sound was great but the mids were a little veiled. It was almost as if vocalists were singing with their mouths covered by a thin blanket, for lack of better analogy. But with the mod, the mids cleared that issue up a lot. I should also mention another small mod that I did to my MA900s, I bought the Dekoni velour pads that were intended as an upgrade for the Beyerdynamic DT 770/880/990 on Amazon. The fabric of the stock pads were a bit uncomfortable and hot on my ears after a while, and I found the velour was much softer, with an added byproduct of bringing up the bass just a tad, as the foam in the Dekoni pads offered a little more isolation around the ears. 
  7. walfredo
    Thanks!!  Looks enticing, but I don't solder. :frowning2:  Maybe it is time to learn... :)
  8. Trunks159
    Got some DT880s and some AD900x's here if anyone's interested in a comparison.
  9. Hailin
    I think a lot of people would love an impression. Would be cool if you could add Yosi Horikawa "Bubbles" to your music listening impression. That song has some sort of weird soundstage of imaging voodoo going on. Honestly all his tracks creep me out but have me constantly testing new headphones/earphones out. Been messing about with budget earbuds and I keep coming back his music to test soundstage and bass.

    Thanks for the suggestions all i was thinking planars would be the next step up. I do have a Fiio E09k but I don't think it is enough to run the insane HE500. I do have a pair of MrSpeakers Alphadogs bought them right when the new pads came out years ago and my amp just can't lift them up to there legendary status.
    Guess I could start saving for the HE400i, s or HE560. Had a HE400 years ago and the weight was to much loved the sound though.

    Would love to do the resistor skip and recable it to 3.5mm removable for a boompro setup but I am to nervous and my solder skills are nonexistent. Plan to change that this year and learn on the multiple pairs of broken KSC75 I have lying around.
  10. Trunks159

    Alrighty then.


    For the record, I'll be using the Fiio E10K to power them.

    I will say for now that soound-wise, the AD900X is my favorite.
  11. amigomatt
    I have the HE400 and HE560 and, although both have qualities that could be said to be better than the MA900, neither can replace the unique soundstage presentation that the MA900 offers!
  12. Trunks159
    From brief listenings between the AD900x, MA900, and DT880 (250ohm) (have had for 2 days):

    MA900 >= DT880 > AD900X
    The MA900 feels like nothing is on your head, the DT880 feels about as comfortable, and you can shake your head without the headphones shaking. They can just get a little warm.
    The AD900x is overall comfortable, but the fit feels just a tad weird. Open headphones are generally comfortable though (besides Grados and K701).

    Takes a lot longer to develop a good opinion on the sound.

    AD900x > MA900 >> DT880
    If you like the open-ness of the MA900, you'll be in for a treat with the AD900x. The DT880's soundstage isn't small, but the MA900 and AD900x make it feel a little small.

    Bass Quantity:
    MA900 >= DT880 > AD900x
    Very similar amount of bass from the first 2. The AD900x has a good amount of bass imo, but i can totally see how some people would find it light on the bass.

    Treble Quantity:
    AD900x > DT880 > MA900

    I wish I could go in depth right now but don't have the time to listen, and it'll probably take a week.
    I have to say though that it's nice to hear how well the MA900 stacks up the DT880 and AD900x. (I've had the MA900 for like 3-4 years?)

    PS: "Bubbles" sounds great on all 3 really. I'll need more time for now.
    Just saying, if treble isn't your thing, the AD900x is probably not for you.
  13. Hawaiibadboy Contributor
     Isolation is same as ma900 I was in a noisy shop this time and heard my girl whispering to me while listening. Isolation is zero IMO and that's cool since open back is like being in the club. The music plus the ambiance of the sounds around you.

  14. Sp12er3
    @Walfredo Sony MDR Z1R, Sony's new flagship headphone. Said to have the perfected form of the 70mm driver that's in the XB1000, MA900, and Z7.
    About isolation, yeah, it's not much about blocking sound from going in (still better than open though, small ambience like fan noise can be blocked out), but one thing it does well is not letting sound to leak out from inside.
    I don't know about upgrading from the cozy MA900 to an aggresive planar like M560.. Elear also isn't it as its too tiring for long duration listening IMO. From some limited headphones that I'm lucky enough to have a demo only the Z1R has similar unique combintation as MA900 does.
    @Trunks159 thanks for the comparison! As mid lover, I have the AD1000X on the list of headphones that I Have to check out in the future, surprised that it has bigger SS than the MA, Always thought of them to be quite an intimate sounding headphone.
  15. Trunks159
    Hardly a comparison at this point. The DT880 is taking up more of my time.

    As far as AD900X vs MDR MA900
    The MA900's soundstage feels more like you're in an auditorium and there's an orchestra playing.
    The AD900X feels like you're in a cube room with the walls literally made of speakers playing sounds around you. There's a larger distance between each instrument.

    I feel however that the MA900 expresses depth better.

    The DT880 doesn't really compete in soundstage. It gets exposed at higher volumes, where the individuall sounds get larger and the soundstage kind of runs out of room. You really only notice this if you use headphones with huge sounstages like the MA900, AD900X, AND K701. DT880 definitely has "better" bass and is much more true to the recording than either though.
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