Finding the Right Headphones (And Mic) – Audio Technica ATH-M50

I know finding a good set of headphones or a headset can be a tough task. Even for a gamer and especially when you’re not sure what you’re looking for. All you know is that you want good audio quality and a good bass for a good price. I got exactly what you’re looking for. The Audio Technica ATH-M50 or the Audio Technica ATH-M50x.ath_m50_1_sq

Pros:

  • Bass is great
  • Balanced sound
  • Great overall sound quality
  • Good build quality
  • Comfortable (even more comfortable with the ATH-M50x)
  • Worth the money

Cons:

  • No volume control
  • Hard to use with portable music players (only ATH-M50)
  • Ears can get a little warm from using it for long periods (only ATH-M50)

Before we get into the ATH-M50/ATH-M50x more, I’d like to clear something up. If you’re a gamer and want a headset, you should read this post. I used to purchase gaming headsets when playing games and when I found out about what I’m going to tell you, my whole experience of games and music was amplified a thousand times. The trick is to buy a headset and a mic separately. Finding a mic is not as hard as finding a good pair of headphones. What you can do is simply to buy a ModMic. A ModMic is a mic you attach to your headphones and plug in to your computer and the quality is actually pretty good. I know, having both the headphone wire and the mic wire hanging loosely can be irritating, but there are solutions for that. You could use easier adhesive or twist them around each other and use cable ties to tie them together. Only your imagination can stop you.

Why should I get headphones and a mic separately?

Better value. Enough said. Gaming companies make a lot of money on their products because of their customers laziness. What they do, is basically what you don’t. They combine a pair of mediocre headphones with a mediocre mic and make a mediocre headset for a high price. You can do the same for a much cheaper product!

My recommendations

If you’re flat out looking for a pair of headphones and a mic without an explanation, go for the ATH-M50 or ATH-M50x and a ModMic. With this setup, you’ll go a long way for your average use. Price isn’t too high, and you get a lot of value. If you’re not interested in quality sound, you could pretty much go for any headset you want.

What’s the difference between ATH-M50 and the ATH-M50x? Audio Technica has actually discontinued the ATH-M50 which means that you can find it for a lower price than the M50x (depending on where you’re looking of course). In some cases, they can be as expensive as the M50x. There is no big difference in sound. The main difference is that you have three detachable cables that come with. One coiled standard cable, one straight long cable and a straight short cable for portable use. The standard ATH-M50, without the x, has a coiled cable that can’t be detached. Something else that has changed is the fit. The earpads and the headband have gotten a makeover.

I’ve tried both the ATH-M50 and the ATH-M50x, but I chose ATH-M50 anyway.Detachable cables and the new headband and earpad material wasn’t a good enough reason to spend the little extra.

Now for the mic I use a table mic. It’s called The Yeti and it’s made by Blue Microphones. I got a microphone arm for it for it and fixed it to my desk. There’s not much to say about the mic other than that I am very satisfied with it.

The last tip I can give you is that you should try every product before you buy it. Go to your local audio store and try headphones before buying them.