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Is this a good step up from the Audio Technica ATH M40x? I can assume by looking at the price that it definitely is, but is it really worth it? I'm not a huge audiophile, and 399.99 is more of investement rather than a purchase to me.
Honestly, coming from your end. It's not worth it.
Money better spent elsewhere, could get 2-5 headphones for the same amount.
Thanks. Maybe in the future when my M40x headphones are broken I will look for higher end gear. I care a lot about my music, but I'll remain patient and wait when the time is right to buy a high end pair of headphones.
what you get when you get past the 200$ club is resolution, soundstage and clarity more than anything else. If the M40s are 80% then you're only incrementally going to jump up by 5% per 100$ up to a certain point like 95% which then the increase in price only nets about .5%. If it's more an investment then I would pass. Read up on the V-Moda M-100, And Sony XB950-N1. They're really good value price to performance land they're resolving enough. Keep in mind that's only two out of twenty very good choices that's hundreds less than the X00s.
If you do pick these up in the future, make sure you get a decent DAC of sorts and some nice lossless music files to truly show yourself the difference. It's good to have a handful of songs you can use to compare different headphones and speakers. My Denon AH-D2000's broke this year and I picked up these as a replacement. They are fantastic. I also own the original ATH M50's, and those are great headphones, but they don't even compare to the X00's. But don't spend your money until you have the budget for it. At work I use the Apogee Groove + Audioquest Jitterbug ($300 total) and it really makes a difference on all audio from my MacBook pro. At home I am lucky enough to have picked up the Asus Xonar Essence STX pci-e sound card when it was still available and only $200.
Bottom line, these are totally worth the money. Make sure you have proper source files and a DAC to deliver those files. Make a budget for yourself. Save up and then get the drop the next time you have the money. I can honestly say that the Apogee Groove is an amazing pairing to these headphones and it's very portable so you can use it at home and at work or wherever you have a USB A slot. You can decide whether or not you want the Audioquest Jitterbug. Here's a review on it: https://www.stereophile.com/content/audioquest-jitterbug-usb-noise-filter
Also, the Dekoni Premium Earpads for Fostex Massdrop make a huge difference in both isolation and comfort compared to the stock pads, which are fine. You can find my comments on the sheepskin pads under that drop.
They are good with an amp. The build is fair for such a release, meaning the subjective matter of modding (ear pads, cables, headbands). Weight is a little heavy, but not a bad thing for me. Cable is really hardcore/aggressive for durability. Don't get me wrong, the sound is great, as the driver indeed delivers what might other wise be missed. Other options I'd include, except I'm replying without trying the M40x's performance...lol
I agree with yakov if you are not a audiophile they may not be worth it. From what i have heard the m40 are rather good for what they do. A worthy upgrade may be the phidelio X1 or X2 much less expensive and also a very good set of cans I would at least check them out look at some reviews I enjoy my set of X2 quite a lot.