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on 14 December 2011
These are the same as the ATH-M50, the difference is just that the cable is straight on the ATH-M50S and coiled on the other. Check those out to see many more in-depth reviews (including mine), but the jist is that these are unbeatable at this price, and better than many far more expensive headphones.
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on 30 January 2013
I've had many headphones over the years usually sticking with either Sennheiser or Denon, but when the opportunity arose to treat myself to a pair of new headphones, I spent months reading reviews to find the perfect headphones for my budget. Long story short, I made a great purchase.

So after a full month of usage, here's my review:

Comfort:
Wearing glasses made using most over-ear and on-ear headphones uncomfortable after a few hours, this hasn't been an problem with these. I've been using them 7-8 hours a day 5 days a week with no discomfort. The ear pads on these are also extremely soft and comfortable which for quite a heavy product makes all the difference. I did notice a few reviewers saying they're quite tight on the head, I spent the first few days leaving them wrapped around a soft pillow to stretch out the headband, they're now a perfect fit.

Privacy (sound leakage):
Working in a quiet office meant it was important nobody else could hear what I was listening to, especially when I'm turning it up to 11. Being closed backed with a good seal between head and phones meant these did the job perfectly.

Sound quality:
These headphones have the best quality I've ever heard on headphones, I'm no expert at judging highs/lows/soundstage etc, all I can give it my opinion that these make all types music sound great. The bass is there when you need it, and gone when you don't, from classical to dub to rap to rock, I've listened to it all with these and have been impressed with it all.

Build quality:
They are mainly constructed of plastic, but it doesn't feel cheap in any way. I've spent the past month, folding these up and chucking them in my bag at the end of each day and they're still good as new. The thick cable is very durable, but would be even better if it was detachable.

If you have a similar budget to these and are looking for a good all rounder you can't go wrong!
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on 30 August 2012
I bought these just over two months ago, and have used them extensively, so I feel now is a good time to review them. I bought these, over other alternatives, after seeing fantastic reviews all over the internet - and although over the months I had spent researching headphones I had swayed to and fro from these headphones - I know I made the best possible purchase.
These were my first pair of expensive headphones I had ever bought, and I am more than pleased with the investment. However, it should be noted that I have used my dad's Bose AE2 headphones on several occasions so I have some experience in this area.

The advantages are endless, amazing sound all the way through the spectrum. I have discovered new parts of songs that I never knew existed and the whole music listening experience is now far more dynamic and enjoyable. The term sound-stage is thrown around a lot, and I never really understood what it was until I bought these as I had never spent more than £15 on earbuds. Sounds comes from all directions, and it is pleasantly noticeable. The bass is thumping and clear - something that a lot of people consider to be the most important aspect of music, personally I like a more balanced experience - but for those who love bass, the bass is there and it is clear and not muddy like with the other popular alternative that I'm sure I don't need to name! Highs and mids are crisp, and instrumentals and vocals sound astonishing and very impressive.
I have listened to a variety of genres of music from pop and rock, all the way to electronic and dubstep and have always been thoroughly impressed.
In terms of hardware, I love the way these look personally, the isolation from the cups is great and they cause no discomfort from clamping, even when I'm wearing glasses as my old, cheap Panasonic headphones did. The cable is thick and durable, and is not wearing out any time soon so far as I'm concerned. They come with a screw on 3.5mm to 6.5mm adapter that is gold plated and very high quality. Also the joint on the cable to the 3.5mm jack is protected by a spring to stop the cable from wearing out - an intelligent and effective design that I was very pleased to see.

There are some disadvantages though, although very minor and won't apply to everyone (including me, but some people may be affected by this). Firstly, they do leak quite considerably at high volumes so not great for use in public, but then again if I am listening to music in public - I'm on the go and opt for earbuds over headphones. Furthermore, due to the amazing reproduction of the sound - low quality MP3s will have every flaw picked out and reproduced. Personally I have begun to upgrade the quality of my music to loss-less as much as possible but this is something that comes with large file sizes and a lot of time burning CDs. Also the cable is long - about 3 metres - which is good for running around the back of a desk, but less so for using straight from an iPod. I have opted to use a Velcro cable tie to reduce the length to maybe 1.5 metres so that it can still reach around my desk, but also work with an iPod. If the length of the cable really concerns you, then go for the standard M50's with the coiled cable. Other than that, they can get a little warm but I can wear these comfortably for ages - the longest I've used at once is probably 2.5 hours, but I could have remained comfortable for even longer than that!

All in all, I cannot praise these enough - they are really amazing value. Although there are some disadvantages, these don't effect me because of the way I use them and the environment which I use them in, and therefore don't stop me from giving these headphones a 5 star review.
I do intend on purchasing a FiiO E9 amplifier and FiiO E7 portable DAC (Digital to Analog Converter) to further improve the experience - but I can happily say that even without these things, they sound great coming straight out of an iPod, phone or computer.

Buy now!

P.S. - It is also worth noting that the only difference between the Audio Technica ATH-M50's and these the M50S's is the cable. These - the M50S's, have a straight, uncoiled cable - hence the S. The M50's have a shorter coiled cable, so if you need that, then buy the M50's. Everything else is identical, so head there for more reviews and then make your choice depending on which cable type you want. Enjoy!
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on 7 February 2014
I cannot compare it to the Sennheise pair I initially wanted to buy, since I decided to go for ATH after having read many reviews. And I agree with the positive ones. The sound quality is excellent. I tried them with my laptop, compact stereo, clavinova and smart-phone. They deliver a much better sound in the complete spectrum, using different kinds of music. It is noteworthy that using a not optimally ripped Sony recording of Glenn Gould (AAC audio file, 128 kbps, 44100kHz), I could start hearing his humming more clearly than with any other set of headphones or in-ear phones I had used before.

The long cable is for my purposes a major plus. The extra protection of the cable at the junction point with a metallic cover as well.

I used them in an office environment and the sound isolation was really good in both directions.

Although I was not very sure about the design (which looked a little old fashioned to me initially), when they arrived they really made me think otherwise, because they give a "higher quality" visual impression.
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on 17 August 2012
The sound quality is simply amazing. Used with a computer, movies, music and games are fantastic. This straight cable version also suits better than the coiled cable version for routing over a desk. Unfortunately the headband isn't particularly padded. The frame of the headband is metal, typical of the excellent build quality. However, there isn't much padding around this, and it made my head ache after 30 minutes use. I appreciate that this will be down to the shape of your conk (although I don't believe mine is particularly pointy!), so they are definitely worth a try. I desperately wanted to find a way to wear them comfortably, so good was the sound from them. However I reluctantly returned them and await a pair of Seinhesser 558s.
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on 18 January 2014
I waited eagerly for this to arrive and i must say i am not at all disappointed as i was with the skullcandy Aviators. The cable however in the descriptions is mentioned as 1.2 or 1.3 mtrs but it is actually 3 meters long which i wanted it to be.

The sound quality is fantastic and i am totally satisfied with it. it is as good as an open back you would get for a much higher price. There is sound leakage but the sound isolation is very good. It does not need a burn out period as some other headphones do, you get an amazing quality right out of the box.

It is highly durable, made out of thick plastic with metal headbands with padding. The ear pads are very comfortable but the part of the headband which rests on top of the head isn't.

I look forward to using this for a very long time, and i would highly recommend this to anyone looking for an excellent pair of cans for a reasonable price.
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on 19 November 2011
Riding on the first month of burn-in, these cheap looking plastic cans have proven one of my best investments ever: presence is the word. As in they are work tools and not toys, and their sound is not purposed for comfort, but precision. Presence also as their seal around one's head is much more noticeable than my previous Sennheiser HD595. But totally worth it.

Their low impedance makes them usable even on a phone, but good amplification seals the deal. The rather poor documentation, physical and online, are my only negative remarks on a product that shames me on the fact that if it hadn't been built in China in questionable labor conditions (for european standards), I would never afford to own headphones with such stellar performance.

Highly recommended.
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on 18 December 2013
Disclaimer
1. I've bought lots from Amazon, I've never felt the need to review a product, even a good one, until now.
2. I am not a music producer or professional, a lot of the reviews here are from qualified people, and believe them these headphones are immense.
3. I have now bought three pairs of these things as gifts for other people to enjoy music how it should be delivered.

Anyway here's my story.

I listen to music all day at work, everyday, whilst writing software. I have two pairs of Sennheiser over ear's, one £50 and the other £80. I thought they were the nuts. I went into Curry's (UK shop) listened to a pair of £260 Beats headphones, they blew my mind. I looked on Amazon and everyone who actually knows about music (not just enjoys it) said the Beats sucked and to get the ATH-M50's, for half the price! I admit, I was a skeptic, how can something half the price be better? So as a trial I thought, get a pair if they aren't much better than my Sennheiser's then I can return them. I've never heard music like it before ever. I've directly compared these to my other Sennheiser cans and the range in these ATH-M50's is phenomenal. However initially after plugging them into my iMac I was a little underwhelmed, I was pretty shocked, they didn't sound as good as I expected. I remember the beats sounding better. How can this be I thought? All the reviews were so perfect? Am I using them wrong or something? Turns out I was. I found out the iMac's EQ is setup for the crappy white earbuds Apple make, all Macs ship with one of the best DAC's, but it's "tuned down" so the white ear buds don't distort. So the Mac has the power to run these awesome headphones it's just not enabled by default. I googled "osx ath-m50 eq" top result returns a blog post from Dctr Watson, who had the same issue. I followed his 6 steps to configure the Mac's EQ so it delivered the range these headphones can handle and WOW. The bass is insanely deep and crisp even when it's loud, the range of sound is astonishing. I listen to house, drum and base, dupstep, indie, rock and electro - everything sounds better than it ever has. My other headphones can't handle the same EQ setup, they distort immediately. As a test I turned the bass right up, so much bass my skull was vibrating (probably not good for you) and it was still crisp, zero distortion.

I've had them a month now and I still smile listening to my music. Believe every other review here these are immense. Back to the test pair, I did not return them, in fact I bought two more pairs, one for my Girlfriend (who is a giant bass head) and my brother - both of them amazed. They didn't realise what they'd been missing out on.
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on 3 January 2015
Very comfortable headset. I bought it to use with my VOX AMPLUG Twin headphone guitar amp. With the ordinary headset I could not get rid of an excessive amount of bass I was getting from the amp and my Fender Strat. With this headset the tone is just fine and I can wear this headset for hours.
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on 20 November 2012
Beauty is in the ear'ole of the beholder, innit? OK, I've been an audiophile ever since I could afford, well, almost afford to be one. Prior to buying these A.T. phones I was stupid enough to invest in Bose Triports and Quiet Comforts. The sound from both? pretty good - the build quality? bl**dy rubbish! Both models' head straps and ear cups are designed to fall to bits allowing Bose to get some really good after Sales profits in the bag. With that in mind, I spent hours reading reviews for the ATH-M50S phones before buying. The sound? startlingly good - the build quality? bl**dy marvellous! A word of advice, there's a curly cable version which, just like your telephone, will get all tangled up in itself and cause you to say stuff like, "Gosh!" and "Oh, bother!" - the straight cable version's the way to go, (in my view,) and if you're not a DJ you'll probably wonder why Audio Technica have included what appears to be about twice the length of cable for 'Normal' use. Still, and ask any woman, better too long than too short. The sound is reviewed as, and is, in my opinion, very, very accurate without encroachment at high, mid or low frequencies.. Of course, there's other 'phones around for less and some that cost thousands.. I started by writing "Beauty is in the ear'ole of the beholder" and this is the best hint I can provide. Spend less and it's pretty certain what you'll hear will be of lesser quality - Spend more and, well, how good is your hearing anyway and how much loot do have at your disposal? Unless somebody markets a new product that returns at a lower price what you'll hear from these Audio Technicas, buy with confidence. I strongly recommend these 'phones and, as you see, I care not a jot about Splitting an Infinitive. More excellent advice from the SuperGadger, an English ex-UNpatriate living in a tiny Bulgarian village where men are men, so are most of the women and the sheep walk with a limp: Ewe should be so lucky.
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