Gear Review: Audio-Technica’s M-Series Headphones

Audio_TechnicaMseriesThe new M-Series professional headphones from Audio-Technica are specifically designed for the recording studio and are available in four models. The ATH-M20x, ATH-M30x or ATH-M40x each have 40-mm drivers with neodymium magnets, copper-clad aluminum-wire voice coils and the same operating impedance for consistent volume on a common headphone system. Top of the line is the ATH-M50x with 45-mm drivers and the same sonic signature as the original ATH-M50.

Perfect for a first-time buyer or student are a pair of ATH-M20x ($69 MSRP/$49 MAP). Great for live tracking and field recording are the ATH-M30x headphones ($99 MSRP/$69 MAP). They have a more focused and detailed mid-range sound that enables close scrutiny of audio quality.

Jump to the ATH-M40x ($139 MSRP/$99 MAP) and you step up to swivel ear cups for one-ear monitoring and a fully collapsible design—great for DJ monitoring. The ATH-M50x professional monitor headphone ($239 MSRP/$169 MAP) comes with all the features and kit of the ATH-M40x and is the epitome of the line.

I’ve been using my set of ATH-M50x during a mix session here at my studio and I am impressed by the way they reveal details in the mix I missed while listening on my main monitor speakers.


Barry Rudolph is a recording engineer/mixer who has worked on over 30 gold and platinum records. He has recorded and/or mixed Lynyrd Skynyrd, Hall & Oates, Pat Benatar, Rod Stewart, the Corrs, and more. Barry has his own futuristic music mixing facility and loves teaching audio engineering at Musician’s Institute, Hollywood, CA. He is a lifetime Grammy-voting member of NARAS and a contributing editor for Mix Magazine. http://barryrudolph.com