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My mini-testing Sony MDR-1AM2 | Based on Sony WH-1000XM2 design?

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Old 21-04-2018, 07:46 AM   #1
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Post My mini-testing Sony MDR-1AM2 | Based on Sony WH-1000XM2 design?

Managed to try Sony MDR-1AM2. Take note I only test with demo unit
but didn't buy it as it is not time to retire my MDR-1A.



Weridly the sound signature is more or less similar with Sony WH-1000XM2.
Except that the Sony MDR-1AM2 is wired not wireless.

Design





When I first pick up the headphone, man this new headset is much lighter at 187G as compare with MDR-1A about 225G.
Light is one thing but it does feel like Sony WH-1000XM2 especially the size is much slimmer and smaller than MDR-1A.

To me Sony MDR-1AM2 don't seem to carry on from MDR-1R/A design but rather take on the looks from Sony WH-1000XM2.
However Sony MDR-1AM2 headband as well as ear cups are leather and they do feel really comfortable.

Specs
One thing to take note this time Sony MDR-1AM2 is designed for
smartphone user in mind.
Why?

Impedance - MDR-1A have a impedance of 24 ohms while this the MKII
is 16ohms. Thus make it easier to drive with a lower impedance.

Cable included - Take note MDR-1AM2 only comes with a 4.4 balanced cable
as well as a mic in line 3.5mm cable.(For chats and listening)

Sound

The key point for any headphone is the sound.
In the past I own Sony MDR-1RMKII -> Sony MDR-1A.
The MDR-1X series vocals are what stand out as well as soundstage.

However MDR-1AM2 sound signature is different than MDR-1A.
Test setup:
Sony MDR-1A
Sony MDR-1AM2
Sony muc-s12sm1 (Brought from Japan)
Sony NW-A45 (CD rips FLAC as well as high res tracks from HDtracks
and Hifitrack)

Vocals/mids on the new MDR-1AM2 does sound stand out from previous gen but I noticed it is much brighter than MDR-1A.
The confusing part is when I test bass and low frequency between MDR-1A and MDR-1AM2.

Weirdly I still feel MDR-1A bass and low frequency is much wider and deeper than MDR-1AM2.
MDR-1AM2 wise sounds something like how Sony WH-1000XM2 which puzzles me.

So this is headset based on WH-1000XM2? So far it look like it.
That is why I didn't get as to me if the sound signature is more or
less similar with WH-1000XM2 I rather get that instead.

Not to mention smartphones in the future will drop the 3.5mm so wired headphone may not be popular.
Between WH-1000XM2 and MDR-1AM2, I think most will get the wireless
one than wired.

But don't get me wrong MDR-1AM2 does sound great, if you are looking for a wired version of WH-1000XM2 here it is and cheaper at $429.
Just take note there is no 3.5mm cable without mic.

This is just my first impression, much testing as well as the headphone have to be burned in than we will know the true potential of MDR-1AM2.
Maybe once I settle my HTS 4K HDR Setup than I get one.

I won't want to retire my MDR-1A as it have been with me since day one when it was launched here in SG.
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Old 21-04-2018, 09:11 AM   #2
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edit: what other DAPs did you try with the stock 3.5mm cable and having issues?
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Old 21-04-2018, 09:41 AM   #3
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edit: what other DAPs did you try with the stock 3.5mm cable and having issues?
What issues?
I mention that this headphone comes with mic in line stereo cable.
Have not mentioned about any issues.
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Old 21-04-2018, 03:02 PM   #4
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What issues?
I mention that this headphone comes with mic in line stereo cable.
Have not mentioned about any issues.
I could have misread. If no issue then there is no need to buy dedicated 3.5mm cable just because the stock one is inline mic unless it lousy sound vs dedicated one.

Last edited by Gaghiel; 21-04-2018 at 03:07 PM..
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Old 20-12-2018, 02:30 PM   #5
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Weridly the sound signature is more or less similar with Sony WH-1000XM2.

MDR-1AM2 wise sounds something like how Sony WH-1000XM2 which puzzles me.
ur above puzzle me....
I own the 1000xm2, tested the 1am2 yesterday. I tot 1am2 sounds better. Am considering to get 1am2 for home use. Now I am not sure liao
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Old 20-12-2018, 05:00 PM   #6
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ur above puzzle me....
I own the 1000xm2, tested the 1am2 yesterday. I tot 1am2 sounds better. Am considering to get 1am2 for home use. Now I am not sure liao
Audio testing is subjective so up to you to decide.
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Old 20-12-2018, 05:42 PM   #7
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Techidiot, u r right, sound is very subjective. Btw, like to ask u since u have 1000xm2, is 1000xm2 considered as a high res headphone?

I noob in this area & intended to go into it. Do I need a high res 'walkman'player for flac or will my pc, coupled with a software, be gd enough? Is a dac required?
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Old 20-12-2018, 06:30 PM   #8
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Techidiot, u r right, sound is very subjective. Btw, like to ask u since u have 1000xm2, is 1000xm2 considered as a high res headphone?

I noob in this area & intended to go into it. Do I need a high res 'walkman'player for flac or will my pc, coupled with a software, be gd enough? Is a dac required?
1000xm2 is high resolution, however you need both high res player
and file for high res playback.
But the difference isn't very obvious between standard flac
and high res.

I still prefer CD-rips especially for chinese songs.
CD-rips I usually use Sony music center to rip.
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Old 21-12-2018, 12:13 PM   #9
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I will also rip fr cd.
What format is best for quality?
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Old 21-12-2018, 02:37 PM   #10
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I will also rip fr cd.
What format is best for quality?
FLAC so far is the best, Wav and Flac not much difference but
issue with WAV is the album art which cannot embed.
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Old 21-12-2018, 04:12 PM   #11
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Thanks a lot
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Old 30-12-2018, 09:00 AM   #12
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1000xm2 is high resolution, however you need both high res player
and file for high res playback.
But the difference isn't very obvious between standard flac and high res.

I still prefer CD-rips especially for chinese songs.
CD-rips I usually use Sony music center to rip.
I think Sony WH-1000XM2 is high resolution (Hi-Res Audio) certified both for wired connection and wireless connection (when using LDAC). But its main attraction seems to be more on the noise cancellation part and at the same time provides better sound than Bose QC35 (better noise cancellation). So frequent travellers may choose between the two.

If just for audio, I tend to believe 1A and 1AM2 will be better.

I was briefly lured to this high-res thingy and bought the Sony MDR-100AAP (lower end than the 1A or 1000X) and it is pretty good. And I also bought another cheaper Chinese brand dual driver high-res audio certified ear phone and it is not bad either. But then I do not have really good source -- I am paying for VIP access to QQ Music and XiaMi music but I do not think their SQ quality songs are lossless.
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Old 30-12-2018, 09:33 AM   #13
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I was briefly lured to this high-res thingy and bought the Sony MDR-100AAP (lower end than the 1A or 1000X) and it is pretty good. And I also bought another cheaper Chinese brand dual driver high-res audio certified ear phone and it is not bad either. But then I do not have really good source -- I am paying for VIP access to QQ Music and XiaMi music but I do not think their SQ quality songs are lossless.
Hmm just use Google and it is said that the SQ quality in QQ music is lossless (Flac format, 25MB to 60MB size from what I see) but with copyright protection which you can listen only when the VIP subscription is valid.

And it is said the quality is okay but not as good as CD rip.

As for Xiami music, it is said SQ is supposed to be lossless as well but some of the older ones are fake ones imported from 天天动听.

Anyway since I am using my Huawei P20 or iPhone 6S to listen and not dedicated SAP, I guess no much difference and my ears are not that advanced.
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