Audio-Technica’s Professional studio headphone line, provides two options ATH-M40X and ATH-M50X which are top-notch selling headphones still today.
Its noticeable that the cheaper version M40X delivers flat, incredibly accurate monitoring across a wider frequency range which is liked by many over M50X heavy Bass (may be due to its 5 mm larger driver size)
Both M40X & M50X are recommended for DJ monitoring, professional sound mixing and studio tracking, with sound isolation you can literally get differentiating notes in the mid & lows . Mostly when you want to listen vocals carefully amoungest instruments, the swiveling ear cups will help one-ear monitoring simple.
Coming to main subject of comparing them to understand if spending $50 is worth or not, just go through the simple tech specs comparison table for M40X vs M50X
Audio-Technica ATH-M40x vs M50x Comparison
|Audio-Technica Headphones||Audio-Technica ATH-M40x||Audio-Technica ATH-M50x|
|Prices are updated each day on this website||$99.00 Best Buy||$149.00 Best Buy|
|Color||Black||Black, Green, Blue, White, Limited edition matte gray|
|Driver||40 mm||45 mm|
|Voice Coil||CCAW (Copper-clad aluminum wire)|
|Sound reproduction||M40x feels integrated into the sound, accuracy of reproduction is much tighter||M50x feels bit harsh sound delivers some extra bass|
|Headphone impedance||35 ohms||38 ohms
will need some more power compared to M40x to produce higher volumes
|Headphone frequency response||15 – 24,000 Hz||15 – 28,000 Hz|
|Sensitivity||98 dB||99 dB|
|Power handling capacity||1,600 mW at 1 kHz|
|Cup design||90° swiveling earcups for easy, one-ear monitoring|
|Cup cushion||M40x have softer cushions than M50x|
|Size||M40x are little smaller in size than the M50x|
(includes 1.2 m – 3.0 m coiled cable and 3.0 m straight cable)
|Detachable cables (includes 1.2 m – 3.0 m coiled cable, 3.0 m straight cable and 1.2 m straight cable)|
|Weight||240 g (8.5 oz), without cable and connector||285 g (10 oz), without cable and connector|
|Supplied accessory||Protective carrying pouch, 6.3 mm (1/4″) screw-on adapter|
|Audiophile Stereo Headphones||Audio-Technica ATH-M40x||Audio-Technica ATH-M50x|
|Price||Best Buy||Best Buy|
Although from the above table you may see M40X has slightly lower specs w.r.t. M50X in terms of low impedance (35 ohms) vs 38 ohms of M50X and a lower frequency range of 15-24000 hertz, lesser than 15-28000 hertz that M50X can deliver.
The M40x as per me reproduces a neutral sound controlling the Mids and highs at same attention as the bass, whereas the M50x, due to its driver size delivers more bass and may feel harsh at some point of time. This is the only point which drives me away from M50X, the over-emphasized bass may not sound natural all the time, some beats may look off no doubt.
So what do you do ? Buy M40X or M50X ?
My personal favorite is M40X which delivers pretty neutral & flat sound important for my studio work, operating is descent frequency zone still saving my $50 bucks 🙂