Audio-Technica ATH-M40X Professional Monitor Headphones (Review)

RedViking

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I was looking for budget studio headphones (around R1500) to track my guitars, and after looking at many option vs price I settled for the Audio-Technica ATH-M40X (R1700)

First Impressions.
(I will post an update again after at least a week usage.)

Wearing them for the first time they fit nicely around my ears. They do sit quiet tight and not nearly as comfortable as the Sony WH-1000XM3, but the passive noise reduction is much better probably because of the tightness. They also feel a bit 'harder' on my head. I will give it a week or so and see how it fits then.

Sound wise, I've played 1080p Youtube music videos and High Quality google music, between classical, heavy rock and some remixes it sounds great. Lows are not to loud, highs are nice and crisp, mids are well balanced. Compared to the Sony's which the mids really stood out and the highs and lows lacked a bit before EQ. So sound wise it sounds great and once the music plays the background noises fades away.

It comes with two super long cables, currently am using the twirly one and it actually works great.

Ordered from www.bounceonline.co.za, delivery was free, within 2 days and fast replies through Facebook messenger. They also sell via Takealot .

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RedViking

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Day 2:

So I have basically almost listened the whole day to music while working. The earphones sit much better today, still tight on my head, not so much on my ears. I've noticed a lot more detail in music. Instruments and background detail that was never there before. One thing I do notice with a lot of the latest music is the 15-16K+ frequencies that are boosted. I felt it is a bit too much.

Using an Audio Interface (ASIO) you can't use any EQ without a DAW so I installed Equalizer APO to be able to set the EQ when not using a DAW.

Current settings when listening to music.... wow.

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RaptorSA

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Nice dude. It's great to see all this feedback from you, you almost sounded more O.C.D. than I am when choosing to buy stuff, actually, no, you are more O.C.D. :)

So far your review glues very well to my personal experience with these. Your comment on +15Khz brightness is interesting, I felt the same but my hearing usually goes to hell above 15K so I try not to comment too much on it, this might explain why I felt the 40's had those "bright" ramp-up peaks followed by an abyss, for me anyway. The 50's tend to reign it in a little more at the high end but according to many "audiophiles" they drop to a little *too* much low-end, which makes them great for listening but maybe that means these are more suited for your needs. Who knows.

The tightness in the fit I mentioned in the other thread was something I tried to convey. Was hoping it was just me having a big head, hopefully it won't be a problem over time, hard to say usually since many headsets do loosen up over time.
 
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ponder

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The tightness in the fit I mentioned in the other thread was something I tried to convey. Was hoping it was just me having a big head, hopefully it won't be a problem over time, hard to say usually since many headsets do loosen up over time.

When not wearing them store them with the earpieces over something large to 'stretch' them out. I hate tight headphones.
 

RedViking

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Nice dude. It's great to see all this feedback from you, you almost sounded more O.C.D. than I am when choosing to buy stuff, actually, no, you are more O.C.D. :)

So far your review glues very well to my personal experience with these.
The tightness in the fit I mentioned in the other thread was something I tried to convey. Was hoping it was just me having a big head, hopefully it won't be a problem over time, hard to say usually since many headsets do loosen up over time.

So far it is getting beter every day.

When it comes to electronics I like to get as much input as possible, specially when it is a big chunk of my income and something I haven't experienced before. Also discover products I wouldn't have noticed before.
 

RaptorSA

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So far it is getting beter every day.

When it comes to electronics I like to get as much input as possible, specially when it is a big chunk of my income and something I haven't experienced before. Also discover products I wouldn't have noticed before.

Amen dude.
I've always been in love with the fact that you can wrap something -mostly cheap- around your head and have an experience that'll blow away and rival speaker systems out there that cost more than an investment banker's car...

Since about 2008 I've always had one rule: Every time you buy headphones, buy something that's an improvement over the previous ones. And while I know I can drop R20K easily on a pair of HD800's or whatever I've honestly not felt the need after I got my 50's, I'm simply not ready yet. However, I did recently start my foray into wireless earbuds (using them while typing this) and whoa... damn, didn't expect the tech to be this awesome yet.

EDIT: The next thing I want to do is find a decent -probably older- LP player and start a tiny collection of my favorite albums. But damn, it's an expensive hobby.
 

RaptorSA

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P.S.

All audiophile crap aside. If you haven't yet experienced this on your new cans you haven't lived yet :)

 

RedViking

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Amen dude.
I've always been in love with the fact that you can wrap something -mostly cheap- around your head and have an experience that'll blow away and rival speaker systems out there that cost more than an investment banker's car...

Since about 2008 I've always had one rule: Every time you buy headphones, buy something that's an improvement over the previous ones. And while I know I can drop R20K easily on a pair of HD800's or whatever I've honestly not felt the need after I got my 50's, I'm simply not ready yet. However, I did recently start my foray into wireless earbuds (using them while typing this) and whoa... damn, didn't expect the tech to be this awesome yet.

EDIT: The next thing I want to do is find a decent -probably older- LP player and start a tiny collection of my favorite albums. But damn, it's an expensive hobby.

I agree, I also think 'the best' (which is relative) will be overkill for me. I first need to improve my skills and other things before getting better. Same with my guitar, I would love to get more pedals, better amp, better guitar, but first I need to master what I have. I guess we think all the extras or better and latest make us sound better, but it actually just highlight how you suck in some areas. :laugh:
 

RaptorSA

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I agree, I also think 'the best' (which is relative) will be overkill for me. I first need to improve my skills and other things before getting better. Same with my guitar, I would love to get more pedals, better amp, better guitar, but first I need to master what I have. I guess we think all the extras or better and latest make us sound better, but it actually just highlight how you suck in some areas. :laugh:

At least you've got skills. Try being the n00b who has zero artistic skills...*pfft*

I don't know what kind of mixing or music you're into but I've spend a lot of time over the years finding what "fits".
And while I'm pretty much the typical old NIN, Tool, Perfect Circle, Depeche Mode, Skinny Puppy, Filter, 16 Volt, Stabbing Westward etc. type there's this band called *Shels I found years ago that simply blows away any headphones (& music) I've ever had. We're talking up to 11 "old school" musicians at some point getting together on stage and jamming the ever living s**t out of audio. It truly is a sonic f**k-fest

That to me is something to work for. One day I'll have the cans & the amp I'll need to fully experience "being there".
If I'm no deaf.

 
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RedViking

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At least you've got skills. Try being the n00b who has zero artistic skills...*pfft*

I don't know what kind of mixing or music you're into but I've spend a lot of time over the years finding what "fits".
And while I'm pretty much the typical old NIN, Tool, Perfect Circle, Depeche Mode, Skinny Puppy, Filter, 16 Volt, Stabbing Westward etc. type there's this band called *Shels I found years ago that simply blows away any headphones (& music) I've ever had. We're talking up to 11 "old school" musicians at some point getting together on stage and jamming the ever living s**t out of audio. It truly is a sonic f**k-fest

That to me is something to work for. One day I'll have the cans & the amp I'll need to fully experience "being there".
If I'm no deaf.

Thank you sir!
 

RedViking

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Update:

So the sound on these headphones are really amazing, but they still sit a bit tight on my head. So I am thinking of selling them and try the Sony MDR-7506.
 

RedViking

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One year later update:

These headphone are just amazing. By now they sit super comfortable and wear them everyday for long hours, from the morning till the evening. No sign of wear or tear on them. Probably just need a bit of a wipe.
 

RedViking

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At least you've got skills. Try being the n00b who has zero artistic skills...*pfft*

I don't know what kind of mixing or music you're into but I've spend a lot of time over the years finding what "fits".
And while I'm pretty much the typical old NIN, Tool, Perfect Circle, Depeche Mode, Skinny Puppy, Filter, 16 Volt, Stabbing Westward etc. type there's this band called *Shels I found years ago that simply blows away any headphones (& music) I've ever had. We're talking up to 11 "old school" musicians at some point getting together on stage and jamming the ever living s**t out of audio. It truly is a sonic f**k-fest

That to me is something to work for. One day I'll have the cans & the amp I'll need to fully experience "being there".
If I'm no deaf.


@RaptorSA I must say I enjoy this *shels album very much. There more artists like this?

Well this is what YouTube music gives me:
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RaptorSA

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@RaptorSA I must say I enjoy this *shels album very much. There more artists like this?

Well this is what YouTube music gives me:
View attachment 883852

Hey dude, awesome, glad you dig it.

That's kind of a tough question. I've yet to find anything quite like it and I've been searching for years. Most of those suggestions are OK, they fall in the same genre but don't necessarily sound the same, apart from now and again a song that gets close. Mogwai as a pretty obvious pick.

Oh Hiroshima has some good stuff.... maybe Suns of the Tundra in some way... it depends...

I'd have to think of some other stuff that you might be interested in but there's one band that I discovered recently that really hit home and is about the closest to *Shels from anything else I've heard: A Swarm of the Sun:


EDIT: Also remember, *Shels actually run their own label so they have some other band under their wing, find them at:

One of those bands, Admiral Angry, feels like getting a f**ing heart attack but it's some pretty epic music if that's someone's thing, or you happen to be wearing headphones while burying your ex GF:


Then there's the kind of Neo-folk stuff these days that's become so popular thanks to the band below.
It's not *Shels, but if you dig the kind of "sound journey" music you get with Shels, a pair of cans and some quiet time then maybe you'll dig this.


or

 
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RedViking

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Hey dude, awesome, glad you dig it.

That's kind of a tough question. I've yet to find anything quite like it and I've been searching for years. Most of those suggestions are OK, they fall in the same genre but don't necessarily sound the same, apart from now and again a song that gets close. Mogwai as a pretty obvious pick.

Oh Hiroshima has some good stuff.... maybe Suns of the Tundra in some way... it depends...

I'd have to think of some other stuff that you might be interested in but there's one band that I discovered recently that really hit home and is about the closest to *Shels from anything else I've heard: A Swarm of the Sun:


EDIT: Also remember, *Shels actually run their own label so they have some other band under their wing, find them at:

One of those bands, Admiral Angry, feels like getting a f**ing heart attack but it's some pretty epic music if that's someone's thing, or you happen to be wearing headphones while burying your ex GF:


Then there's the kind of Neo-folk stuff these days that's become so popular thanks to the band below.
It's not *Shels, but if you dig the kind of "sound journey" music you get with Shels, a pair of cans and some quiet time then maybe you'll dig this.


or


Awesome man, gonna check it.
 

RedViking

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2021 update, Darth Vader not pleased.

I guess time to order replacement pads.

Any local suggestions?

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