When comparing Superlux HD 681 vs Audio-Technica ATH-M50x, the Slant community recommends Audio-Technica ATH-M50x for most people. In the question“What are the best headphones?” Audio-Technica ATH-M50x is ranked 4th while Superlux HD 681 is ranked 27th. The most important reason people chose Audio-Technica ATH-M50x is:
The ATH-M50x are great sounding headphones with a sound that may fall in the neutral category, but with very slight boosts to the bass and highs; a slightly V-shaped sound. The bass is full and has a lot of power. The sub bass has a hint of elevation though, which can make the bass sound a bit loose on hip-hop or EDM tracks. The mids are fairly neutral with no elevation. The highs are also slightly elevated, which does not add harshness but instead gives the sound a shimmery and detailed feel. This sound signature of the M50x makes it versatile. It is neutral enough for monitoring use, yet also has just the right qualities to make it a great choice for enjoying music.
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Pro Not tiring to wear
The HD681 will not put a lot of strain to your neck and head, even for long periods. Coming in at around 220 g, they are relatively light. This is due to the use of plastic as the primary build material, along with small metal tubes on the headband frame instead of large plastic or metal parts.
Pro Bass and treble are emphasized
These headphones have what is called a V-shaped sound signature where the bass and treble is boosted while the mids take a backseat. The bass is powerful, deep and satisfying. Listening to bass heavy music will certainly be a good experience. The boosted treble makes audio detail up front, so nuances in the music can be clearly heard.
Pro Fairly wide soundstage
Due to the semi-open design, the sound is not completely trapped inside the ear cup housing. This gives the sound a wider, more natural feel.
Pro Generally neutral sounding but with an added kick to the low end
The ATH-M50x are great sounding headphones with a sound that may fall in the neutral category, but with very slight boosts to the bass and highs; a slightly V-shaped sound. The bass is full and has a lot of power. The sub bass has a hint of elevation though, which can make the bass sound a bit loose on hip-hop or EDM tracks. The mids are fairly neutral with no elevation. The highs are also slightly elevated, which does not add harshness but instead gives the sound a shimmery and detailed feel.
This sound signature of the M50x makes it versatile. It is neutral enough for monitoring use, yet also has just the right qualities to make it a great choice for enjoying music.
Pro Lively sounding bass
The bass of these headphones sound full with a slight boost. This makes the bass quite punchy without drowning the mids or highs.
Pro Good value for your money as these headphones are feature packed for the price
You get a lot from what you pay for with these headphones. Aside from the great sound, they are also well built and come with a lot of accessories.
Pro Stellar build quality
The ATH M50x is made from high quality matte plastics which are quite resistant to damage without being too heavy. The hinges move smoothly and do not have unnecessary creaks.
Pro Detachable cables
Audio-Technica finally updated the M50's built in cable to a detachable cable. The M50x even comes with three cables, a 1.2 m - 3.0 m coiled cable, a 3.0 m straight cable, and a 1.2 m straight cable. None of the cables have in-line controls though.
Pro Good passive isolation
The ear cups and pads are able to keep the sound in and block outside noise. These are suitable for a noisy office as even low volume music is enough to drown out those noisy office mates.
Pro Can collapse to a more compact size
The ear cups can be folded into the headband, reducing its footprint. Combined with the carrying pouch and detachable cables, you can easily chuck these headphones into your bag when going out.
Pro Great for tracking guitar
Con Thin ear pads may cause comfort issues
The ear pads are made of cheap feeling synthetic leather which can get warm rather quickly. To potentially add more discomfort, the cushioning inside these ear pads is quite thin, and can hurt the area around your ears when worn for many hours straight.
Con May feel cheap and flimsy
The plastics used in the construction of these headphones are not of the best quality. They feel flimsy and will often flex and rattle.
Con Mids can be lacking
Some may find the mids to be inadequate. Vocals, guitars and other sounds in the mid-frequencies may sound distant or too soft.
Con Treble can be harsh
While the bass benefits greatly from the V-shaped sound signature, the highs are boosted by quite a lot, and can make the treble sound too harsh for some. Cymbal hits for example can be too washy and near distorted and can be fatiguing.
Con Only passive noise cancellation
If you're looking for a headphone to keep you isolated on long plane rides, the M50x is probably not the right headphone for you. These headphones do not electronically limit exterior noises, it only blocks noise with its physical design.
Con Ear cups may be too small
The ear cups on the M50x are smaller than those on something like the 380HD or the DT 770 Pro. Your ears could end up touching the the inside of the headphones which can be uncomfortable for some.