Review of Master & Dynamic MH40 and MH30: a treat for the ears and eyes
Portable headphones — tech special. This is not just a utilitarian device, but the element of appearance, can tell a lot about its owner. For example, people in the subway with stationary full size headphones on the head is clearly above prejudice. About the owner of the headphones, Master & Dynamic, we can say that he’s a stickler for sound quality and emphasis on performance and appearance of their devices. Model MH40 and MH30 is made of quality materials and do not look at the huge head and about their sound you will learn from our review.
Stainless steel, aluminium, genuine leather
Frequency range, Hz
Sensitivity (±2 dB)
Specification compliance Hi-Res
Removable: 1.25 m with MIC and remote for iOS, standard 2.0 m
200 x 185 x 50
195 x 190 x 40
Packaging luxury: the “shirt” of white hard cardboard hiding box, covered with matte and very pleasant to the touch velvety material. Cover the box on the magnet. The earphones themselves — in the form of a dense polyurethane foam in the center — round box of thick genuine leather, there are both cable (1.25 m with remote control and microphone and easy-2 m) and adapter 3.5 mm to 6.3 mm. If we move the form below it is possible to find a cardboard box with documentation and soft bag.
Appearance and design
Both models look very impressive — it is clear that headphones are not cheap. But this feeling is not created with gold and rhinestones and high-quality materials and the design a little military style, a little retro.
Master & Dynamic MH40
Master & Dynamic MH30
Case, the elements of the headband is made of anodized steel and aluminium. All parts that come into contact with the user (and thus should be soft and pleasant), upholstered in genuine leather. Perhaps used plastic, but it is not visible. Pillow is trimmed with lamb leather, they are removable, and are attached to the buildings of the powerful neodymium magnets.
Each model is available in several color options: MH40 — seven, MH30 — five. Pretty interesting mix — light brown leather with a silver metal (in this embodiment, we have MH30), while dark blue leather with black metal (MH40) also looks very good.
The main outward difference between these two models — in the form of cups: they MH40 full size oval, MH30 — false round. Different and the diameters of the drivers: 45 mm and 40 mm, respectively. The record model cups can be folded inwards, and covering no. Another very important difference is the length of the rods on which the slide mounts at the ends of the headband: MH30 they are shorter. Finally, the MH40 has a tiny button on the right body — she switches off the sound. Useful, if you urgently need to interrupt listening, and the source is not at hand. Of course, it would be easier to do this with a button on the remote, but it only works with iOS devices.
Connectors for connecting cables there are in each of the cups. This allows you to connect two pairs of headphones in the “network” to listen to music from one source alone. Cables — tissue sheath, but no extraneous overtones at friction about clothes not audible. Due to steel structural elements, drivers with powerful neodymium magnets and magnetic mounting cushions MH40 headphones seem weighty. The increased weight leads to a decrease of the resonance frequency and output them outside the audible region. At the hearing, it must manifest itself in a particularly smooth frequency response in the bass and improved clarity. Later it will be possible to verify the validity of these assumptions.
Technical details (frequency range, sensitivity, maximum power) of the manufacturer is not disclosed. For American brands is a common practice, and in fact it is absolutely correct. In most cases, it’s not how widely extends the frequency range and the extent to which he uniform. And this parameter is highly dependent on individual user settings, so that you are in documentation do not write, the reality will be different. And if so, then there is nothing to fool buyers with different figures of the true meaning of which many do not understand.
As for the maximum power input, this indicator is important for monitors (Studio and especially the stage) as they are to be used at high volume levels. In any case, it is assumed that a potential buyer will listen to headphones and appreciate them for documentation, and sound.
Sources was three. First — fixed: DAC PS Audio PerfectWave MkII DAC and a tube headphone amp. Two more — portable: smartphone LG V10 (with DAC Hi-Fi chip ESS Sabre32 ES9018KM2 and portable headphone amp Sabre 9602) player and Hi-Fi D PLENUE from COWON.
Music — the standard set of recordings of different genres (jazz, rock, classical) in standard (16 bit/44.1 kHz) and high (up to 24bit/192kHz) resolution FLAC and DSD. Before listening headphones were played during the day. That was enough: gone stiffness, especially at high frequencies, the bass become clear and muscular, lined range.
The sound character of the two models was very similar, despite the differences in their drivers and dimensions. This suggests that their sound signature was formed consciously and deliberately. Really nothing extraordinary: all serious firms that spetsializiruyutsya in manufacturing headphones, are able to form their products the desired sound. This can prevent a hard budget constraint. But Master & Dynamic is clearly not the case.
Tonal balance the two models are slightly shifted down — the bass is slightly elevated, but not chanting and not get in a mess even on records by excess bass. There is no doubt that it is done deliberately — to headphones sounded spectacular from any source, including smartphones. Well, because it is likely that fans of the bass significantly more than those who prefer “Pozvoni”.
The stationary system the two models sound a bit more detailed and more transparent than with a portable, but this is solely due to the nature of CAP and PS Audio, which has a high resolution at high frequencies. With a smartphone, and player the sound becomes softer and more relaxed, attention to the smallest detail is not so close, but the sound retains the information content and transparency. The player PLENUE D sounds a little more strictly, refined, and smartphone LG V10 more relaxed and emotionally, although not so elegant and clean. As if the first — a tie and a suit and another in jeans and shirt with an unbuttoned collar. Someone more like the first option, others the second.
If you escape from a variety of sources, we can say that the headphones Master & Dynamic have their characteristic sound: smooth, balanced, comfortable, reasonably detailed and yet clear and clean. You could even say thoroughbred and noble. This is typical American sound with a bold, tight and clear bass, the “right” high, smooth inside, free from any tints. Exciting, emotional, yet accurate and honest — you can listen to very long without a hint of fatigue. Note also a very effective sound insulation, which is ensured not only by the design of the headphones, but the optimal clamping force to the head.
Brand Master & Dynamic is still very young — it was established in 2013, but has already gained a good reputation in the United States and Western Europe, not through expensive advertising campaigns, but only because of the high quality of its products and impressive sound. Add to this the perfect workmanship of the pair, who visited the test, plus replaceable ear pads on the magnets in the MH40. These headphones can be recommended to people with good taste and demanding design and sound. The cost of Master & Dynamic MH40 is 25990 rubles, and the model MH30 — 21490 rubles.
- high-quality materials, including natural leather
- durable design; thoroughbred and comfortable sound;
- two cables included.
- remote with microphone only for iOS.
The author of the text: Vasily Zuev
Picture device: Daria Nesterovskaya
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