SONY MDR1A REVIEW



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  • Josh missed the boat with these. Don't buy new at retail price. I got these used for $60 shipped from eBay. Very good build, extremely light and comfortable, detachable cable, overall great sound, cons: slightly boomy bass you can easily eq and not extremely detailed. Also Work great with my tube buffer into the Atom. like I said, easily available at a fraction of the cost on Amazon..Great for comfortable, laid back music listening.

    charlie brown July 14, 2020 6:37 am Reply
  • MSR7 >

    xOogieBoogie3x July 14, 2020 6:37 am Reply
  • MDR 1am2 is better they improve the bass and treble for more pleasant listening

    Armada Pejuang July 14, 2020 6:37 am Reply
  • I disagree. They aren't analytical headphones like my HD650's or my 770 pro's, they are not designed to be. They are fun headphones, never to harsh and never too loud. The more power I throw at them the better they sound. They are on the warmer side but that is Sony's signature sound which I like. Just because you can't hear the singer smack her/his lips together and the squeak of the kick drum pedal doesn't mean the bass is muddy. They are great for easy listening and enjoying music. The sound signature kind of reminds me of a pair of JBL Eon speakers playing while drinking a beer after a hard days work (if that makes sense).

    Jake Duggan July 14, 2020 6:37 am Reply
  • How does this compare to 1AM2?

    Ronald Cheng July 14, 2020 6:37 am Reply
  • You think it's 250$? I bought mine for 150$ three years before this review came out

    Lasse Louhelainen July 14, 2020 6:37 am Reply
  • great review, i love my 1A`s i actualy use them for gaming and prefer them over my HD598,SHP9500 and M40x . ( also have steelseries Arctis 7 but thats so shit its almost not even worth a mention . )

    No3d July 14, 2020 6:37 am Reply
  • I've owned both these and the version 2. What I think the 1A is particularly good at is taming clipped and overly compressed music. Since I listing to a lot of Rock and Metal from the 2000s, this makes a lot of those really badly mastered songs tolerable to enjoyable. When you combine that with what is probably the most comfortable portable headphone ever made, I'd say they fill a niche pretty well.

    One main thing I'd like to add about both these headphones is how they seem to be tuned for pretty low-volume listening. I know Tyll used to talk about this phenomenon with v-shaped headphones, but it is especially true for this headphone. They sound very good at low volumes, the bass doesn't bloom nearly as much and the highs don't get buried like they do at medium to high volumes. Pair them with a modestly clinical source like a Dragonfly Black or something, and I think they resolve surprisingly well for a mid-fi headphone.

    Neo Zeed July 14, 2020 6:37 am Reply
  • Warm, bassy, muddy, … so just like any other Sony headphones.

    Philip Cooper July 14, 2020 6:37 am Reply
  • This is so stupid, get your ears fixed please, they dont seem to work 👂😩

    Levian & Z Nachtschatten July 14, 2020 6:37 am Reply
  • Just wondering why you are reviewing the older model that has been superseded rather than the newer M2 that is currently on sale?

    Dan my name July 14, 2020 6:37 am Reply
  • Hoe do they compare to the MDR-1am2?

    wv9mm July 14, 2020 6:37 am Reply
  • Do the A1M2 plz

    Zack_szh July 14, 2020 6:37 am Reply
  • The MDR-1AM2 really changed my perception of Sony. Before that the 2-3 models I've tried were all muddy bass, but after seeing some positive mentions in headfi and a 50% discount, I made a gamble. No regrets till this day. This is not for critical listening or studio work. This is a headphone you put on to enjoy music. Very clean and tight bass, elevated ever slightly for listening pleasure. Vocals are not recessed and the highs are there but not bright.

    David July 14, 2020 6:37 am Reply
  • I understand where you're coming from, there is a lack of detail and refineness to the sound, but as someone who has different headphones for different things (as opposed to one "best" headphone), the 1As nail the desire to have a smooth and natural and nonfatigueing listening experience. The extra boost in bass makes electronic music a lot more enjoyable than on more neutral headphones (like my HE-400Is and K553s), even if it still sounds good on them, and emphasizes lower instruments on classical recordings which makes them good as a complimentary pair of headphones to more neutral primary pair.

    BurnoutCollectivist July 14, 2020 6:37 am Reply
  • I'll base my like on your base response based pun.

    Sergio Bona Cerced July 14, 2020 6:37 am Reply
  • I had those headphones. Very similar to z7 but without soundstage and less detail.

    Dynamic Audio Martuss Der July 14, 2020 6:37 am Reply
  • this one is very old, bring M2

    TimeGrowing July 14, 2020 6:37 am Reply
  • Then why it has high frequency response??? What does hi-res mean??? By specs they should be amazing.

    TimeGrowing July 14, 2020 6:37 am Reply
  • FYI – the Cal! is available direct from Creative for $60 (in the US, not sure about other regions) … don't pay inflated reseller prices like the $150+ on Amazon.

    Jeffrey Makuch July 14, 2020 6:37 am Reply
  • Hi, I would like an advice on the best portable closed back headphones for 200 euros. Momentum? One more triple driver? Focal listen?

    Howard Campbell jr July 14, 2020 6:37 am Reply
  • I own a pair of MDR1a (simply due to ridiculously good deal at $50USD used) and I agree 100% of what you said. I also own its imitator Takstar Pro82 and I think those are superior than MDR1a.

    Tysun Yihan July 14, 2020 6:37 am Reply
  • Good for pop song, will get you fall asleep while listen to it, not much soundstage, Not good for metal and rock music, the padding breaks itself overtime.

    Armada Pejuang July 14, 2020 6:37 am Reply
  • Glad to see I wasn't crazy when I listened to these at Best buy. I was not impressed at all relative to the reviews people leave online. Thanks for the honest and thorough reviews as always!

    MrLegion1capone July 14, 2020 6:37 am Reply
  • Wow, I didn't know Sony got so much hate? I thought the mdr 7506 was an industry standard…

    DarkPa1adin July 14, 2020 6:37 am Reply
  • I believe that they have fixed this in the 1am2

    01パーセントHP July 14, 2020 6:37 am Reply
  • You can partially or completely cover the bass ports on this headphone to reduce the bass boom. Did that and a bit of equalization and it became similar to my other audiophile headphones.

    Leonhart July 14, 2020 6:37 am Reply
  • Sorry, i have mdr1000x and they say its basically mdr1a with noise cancelling. Truthfully, it sucks. Fun? Hell no. Nothing is fun when its muddy. I get that its a consumer oriented build, but sound profile could be better. It isnt good for bass. There's no rumble, boomy that isnt accurate,. Highs are muddy. Clarity sucks. My superlux monitoring headphone sounds wayyyy better. Disappointment.

    I bought it for noise cancelling so its ok i guess. But sound quality, even $20 kz iem is better. Sorry sony. Ive never been disappointed this way. This hurts more than being friendzoned.

    Koehnia July 14, 2020 6:37 am Reply
  • The big problem here is that you review it as a 250$ headphone but the retail price is far from that, more like 150$ to 100$ when it's on sale. I bought mine 109€ two years ago

    Guillaume S July 14, 2020 6:37 am Reply
  • Sony and Panasonic are good at cheap in-ear headphones, but if you compare them with audiophile companies like Sennheiser or Focal, Fostex etc., Sony headphones are bad, but I love Sony PlayStation and Sony tvs!!! 🙂

    Neo Hideo July 14, 2020 6:37 am Reply
  • I don't necessarily agree with your review, but maybe I just hear differently, lol. The bass response is quite good, even though there's lots of mid – bass. The mids are alright, but there is some distance to vocals that doesn't seem to agree with me. For acoustic instruments, especially guitars, it's perfect though (I know, doesn't make sense, but hey). There's a massive peak at 9k which makes female vocals sound sibilant and harsh at high volumes, but it responds well to EQ.

    Anyways, nice review!

    Mango D Sky July 14, 2020 6:37 am Reply
  • compared to Sennheiser hd1?

    cdimi13 July 14, 2020 6:37 am Reply
  • also do reviews outside audio, that would help

    Siddharth Chaudhary July 14, 2020 6:37 am Reply
  • There's already Mk2 of it tho?
    It's th e lightest closed back portable in the market. It's basically featherweight.

    The mk1 can be found for 100-150 now.

    Muhammad Kharismawan July 14, 2020 6:37 am Reply
  • The 1am2 has much reduced bass and more refined sound.

    Ahmed Wael July 14, 2020 6:37 am Reply
  • Sony build quality has been super shitty in my experience, plastic creaks after a couple of weeks and the battery on the wireless units can suddenly die and then good luck chasing sony on the warranty

    Actual Coder July 14, 2020 6:37 am Reply
  • Please review 1A's direct competition, the MSR7 or the newer version MSR7B

    Tang Tang Tang July 14, 2020 6:37 am Reply
  • Man…. you're either trolling us, or you have no idea of what you're talking about, or you hate warm sound signature, or your ear canals differ from the average ones like night and day. All of the cons you're talking about are inaccurate. Just look at the Amazon or the HeadFi org reviews. Even your friend DMS uses them as his on the go daily drivers and I own them too, so I know what I'm talking about. People don't hesitate to buy them and you'll no regret it. Not even the slightest intention to insult you, since I like to watch your reviews. I'm a subscriber already and I feel like talking to a friend. Cheers!

    System Booms July 14, 2020 6:37 am Reply
  • This vs Audio Technica Ath m50x?

    Qazzy July 14, 2020 6:37 am Reply
  • I use to listen to this more. I think it sounds good, warm like you said, very comfortable. Not stellar, but good. Similar sounding to the Sennheiser Momentum 2 over ear.

    Creative Aurvana Live sounds great, similar to the original Sennheiser Momentum, but not the best build.

    Purple Hearts are good, but I have a hard time recommending Massdrops to the masses because of how long you sometimes have to wait for them.

    headphonejedi master July 14, 2020 6:37 am Reply
  • I like the form-factor, the Takstar Pro-82 copies I have fold flat and it's really convenient. That flat shape works great for putting in drawers and backpacks, or hanging on a hook against a wall or desk.

    Antoine P July 14, 2020 6:37 am Reply
  • sony sh.t

    Giuseppe Visciano July 14, 2020 6:37 am Reply
  • You should do a review of the Sony MDR-7506, they are used by loads of professionals for monitoring. Would really like to hear your take on them.

    Bogdan Buzdugan July 14, 2020 6:37 am Reply
  • this is my thought with every single Sony headphone I have tried. Its bloated bass heavy and just sound total mud, I thought the TH900 sounded better with the bass they produce and separations from mids and highs. I dont know if Sony is aiming for audiophiles or Beats users. Sony is by far the worse headphone brand I have try YMMV.

    I tried the Sony MDR-Z1R which was hooked up to their amplifie in Thailand and it just not worth it, not even a quarter of the price they are asking for the combo.

    trilingualkid July 14, 2020 6:37 am Reply
  • Completely disagree about the bass, definitely not muddy at all and the range is great. Some of the other headphones I have are not able to play the sub bass notes and these hits them all. The mids and highs are fine also. I listen to mostly drum and bass so you have a lot of range in there dynamically music wise.

    djnom July 14, 2020 6:37 am Reply
  • Can’t wait for your review of the mdr-z1r. Most people seem to hate it but I find them excellent but ONLY with proper amplification. Also, you make reviewing headphones seem so easy and effortless. Since i am just finalizing my first review myself, i can say … it is very difficult. So, thank you for your videos!

    Old Geezer's Tech Review July 14, 2020 6:37 am Reply
  • Emu purpleheart, CAL, or Meze 99?

    Zach Balfour July 14, 2020 6:37 am Reply
  • MSR7 over comes these!

    Finoz Music July 14, 2020 6:37 am Reply

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