Audio-Technica ATH-M50x Headphone Review
Audio Technica ATH-M50x Headphone review
The Audio-Technica ATH-M50x is an improvement of the previous ATH-M50 model and also a seemingly friendlier version. Despite the upgrade in features, this new pair isn’t much more expensive than the original and you get interchangeable cables and the same great sound that made the original set so popular. Read our Audio-Technica ATH-M50x Headphone Review and see if these headphones are right for you.
Since the release of the Technica ATH-M50x, the responses have been great. Regular consumers, as well as the audiophile community, have fallen in love with it already. They offer a sound profile that lends itself well to both listening and mixing, and for this reason, it appeals to commuters and DJs alike. With a sturdy design and a sleek look, this pair earns a spot on top of the list of anyone looking for a quality pair of headphones.
I was first introduced to the Audio Technica ATH-M50X Headphones a few years back. I was setting up a little home studio and wanted a good pair of headphones. The first thing I did was call my recording engineer friend in Los Angeles and ask him what he would recommend. The pair he recommended was the ATH-M50X he said the sound quality was comparable to headphones costing over a $1000. So I ordered a pair and was not disappointed.
Build and Design
The box that this pair comes in is quite large and features a large picture of the headphones on the front with the model number, while the back highlights features of the headset. Inside the box, you will find the headphone, a Protective carrying pouch, 6.3 mm (1/4″) screw-on adapter, 3-meter straight cable w/ 1/8″ termination, 1.2-meter straight cable w/1/8″ termination and 3-meter coiled cable with 1/8″ termination. What else could you possibly ask for?
The M50’s are around-the-ear, closed back, folding, isolation headphones. As highlighted above, the headphones come with 2 straight cords and a coiled cord for additional connectivity options. The color scheme is very attractive and bold, and from what I see, it looks like the Audio Technica guys understand that bold colors are increasingly becoming the in thing with modern headphones. The Black and aluminum color scheme is well balanced with other markings on the headphones.
Where many style headphones try to look sleek and put expensive-feeling materials like aluminum and leather near your fingertips, these are largely – and unapologetically – plastic. There is a small metal inlaid into the ear cups while the headband is reinforced with a steel band. The overall design and look is pretty creative and well thought out. It might feel a little beefy, but the Audio-Technica ATH-M50x doesn’t stick out miles from the side of your head. Pretty much every Audio-Technica ATH-M50x points out that it’s almost identical to the older ATH-M50s.
One of the main differences is that the Audio-Technica ATH-M50xs removable standard 2.5mm cable has a twist-to-lock mechanism which means you won’t simply just be able to use any 2.5mm cable. This could have been a downside, but thankfully, these headphones come with three removable cables in the box. One of the cables is coiled which allows it to stretch and contract to let you move around with the media device in one place. This is a useful feature when you are in the office or in the studio and need to move around a little. The other two audio cables are straight and measure 3m and 1.2m.
The expansive ear pads give a mid-firm grip on your head that I find very comfortable although they can get warm on your ears. The ATH-M50x folds into themselves for easy storage and travel. This feature makes them more portable and durable as the ear cups are not left hanging and vulnerable to snapping. You also don’t hear any squeaks or otherwise unnecessary sounds when opening and closing the headphones.
The Audio-Technica ATH-M50x offers a great sound quality that I think appeals to a wide audience. The bass is powerful, beefy and deployed with great measure and control. The actual breadth and width of the soundstage are natural and pretty impressive for a speaker in this price range. They deliver a detailed-but-smooth treble that sounds exciting and lovely with a touch of the high-end flavor.
Playing the music on these cans gives a sense of scale and separation that is great enough to ensure that the bass emphasis doesn’t trample over everything else. Apart from the extra power, the bass has depth too, which I particularly find useful for movies and gaming where deep bass adds extra impact to action scenes.
Even though the ATH-M50x can be used with a wide range of devices and audio sources, they give the best representation of the true sound when used on the monitor. They will provide you with accurate vocals and tones, which most users refer to as transparent sound. Throw classical music in the mix and you will start to appreciate the highs that come into play. Some headphones would create a sharp sound at higher levels, but this one cuts off the wailing in vocals and the piercing pitches in the strings so you always get smooth tones.
Audio-Technica ATH-M50x Headphone Review
High-end enthusiasts will also love the superb sound quality that this unit offers. Not only is it easy to equalize your music, but you also don’t experience issues of bass notes being muddled. If you are sitting at your office desk, you probably just want some quality headphones that will block out the office chattering and provide quality sound rather than a booming bass. Something the ATH-M50x does pretty well.
ATH-M50x stays fairly well within our studio tolerances. For some the even sound across all frequencies may not provide the "signature" sound that many high-end headphones users are after, they're more clinically accurate and better at a wider range of genres. They play the music as it was mixed without adding any additional frequency boosts. This is why it is a favorite in many studios.
Even though there's almost always a little bit of distortion in any set of headphones especially when it comes to bass notes, the Audio-Technica M50xs do a great job at keeping the distortions below what most users consider acceptable. This generally means that you won’t hear any distortion that isn't already part of the recorded track.
Now you know why these headphones are highly rated. The comfort, design, sound quality, and affordable price range are some of the things that make these headphones a great buy. You will not find anything below $200 that comes close to this creative package of engineering. Anyone looking for a classical design coupled with great sound quality and extremely effective noise isolation should try out the Audio Technica ATH-M50x.
About the Author
Here to provide you with info and reviews and just plain cool stuff. Electronic device advice.