After a few days of testing my new Sony WH-1000XM5 as primary PC headphones connected to my SMSL C200 DAC I realized that they are much less comfortable than my old MDR-1AM2. They tighten a lot, they are heavier but the noise cancellation is impressive.
Due to their closed structure and rather plasticky pads, after a few hours of use (I love typing on the PC with relaxing music or ASMR audio) my ears start to sweat and hurt a little, enough to prevent me from concentrating.
Bass frequency is more emphasized but the general performance, especially with ANC active, is flatter and more metallic.
I decided to remove the Sony MDR-1AM2 from the eBay sale and restore them, they are really too comfortable and the sound is full of details. I’m using the balanced cable in the appropriate DAC TRS input. I still hear the PC fan in the background and some traffic but it’s nice to stay a little in touch with reality.
I decided not to return the Sony ones due to the incredible noise cancellation and they are really practical with Netflix and on my terrace full of car noises.
This weekend I’ll be out of town for example and I might already bring them with me..
I tried subscribing to Tidal HiFi Plus 30-day free trial to test 24-bit/192 kHz high-quality audio but I’ve had a problem with Firefox not being able to play at these frequencies while Chrome is.
Maybe it will depend on some settings of my PipeWire/Arch Linux…