The Audio Technica ATH-M50 is a tremendous buy. The overall construction is light but sturdy. I read many reviews from users of other manufacturers and found frequent complaints about plastic headbands breaking. The ATH-M50 uses a stainless steel rail to support the cups. The ear cup pressure is adequate without causing discomfort after extended listening. The cord for this model comes in a 6 ft coiled or a 12 ft straight option. I opted for the straight cord because I don't like having the cord constantly pulling on me. For shorter distance listening, I simply put a Velcro strap on the cord to take up the excess. I also like the 1/8 inch plug that's screwed into the 1/4 inch plug adapter. It gives it a clean and sturdy look. The most stunning feature of the ATH-M50 is its flat response. This headphone does not color the material in any way. Music is reproduced clearly and precisely. The dynamic range is stellar and the sensitivity is most notable. After a couple weeks of generaI listening to break-in the drivers, I put these headphones to the test. I started with a test track called 'Red hot car' from Squarepusher. The track is very synthetic, with extreme changes in dynamics and frequencies. The response was amazing with no distortion. The sensitivity is the next admiral quality of these headphones. During an HD performance of the New York Philhrmonic , I could easily and clearly hear the minute sounds of the performers shuffling and turning pages of sheet music during quiet passages. To test vocal and DEEP bass response, I used a recording called 'River' by Natalie Merchant. The headphones pushed my low-end hearing abilities to near sub-sonic. Then to test overall response, I ran a dynamically scorching groove called 'Walk the Walk' by non else than the jazz group, Spyro Gyra. The Audio Technica ATH-M50 certainly proved to be the perfect asset to the audiophile's music collection and I highly recommend them. I was extremely impressed by the quality of sound for such a fair price. There was only one disappointing characteristic about the headphone that I should warn you of. If you have a poorly recorded music collection and sensitive hearing, this headphone will reveal all the annoying flaws. Some listeners may have to upgrade their music collections.
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