Audeze MM-100 review: Simply stunning

Audeze is thought primarily for its high-end planar headphones, and though the model has dabbled in gaming-focused headsets that retail for underneath $500, it would not have any entry-level merchandise. That is altering with the introduction of the MM-100; just like the MM-500, these headphones are made in collaboration with Manny Marroquin, and so they’re designed for use primarily as a reference headset.

The most important distinction is that the MM-100 prices simply $399, making it probably the most reasonably priced Audeze headset you should purchase in the mean time. In contrast, the MM-500 retails for $1,699, greater than 4 instances as a lot. Having used the MM-100 alongside the MM-500 for the higher a part of two weeks, it’s clear that the latter has a extra refined sound, however the MM-100 comes shut, and that’s no small feat.

Whereas Audeze makes use of just a few plastic bits within the chassis, the MM-100 has the same design and the identical nice construct high quality because the MM-500, and there are completely no points on this space. Basically, the MM-100 takes the most effective options of the MM-500, and brings it to a way more reasonably priced value level.

In the event you’ve been holding out for an reasonably priced pair of Audeze headphones, your wait has come to an finish. The MM-100 is not simply among the best Audeze headphones — it’s simply among the many finest general choices you will discover within the sub-$500 class.

Audeze MM-100: Pricing and availability

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Audeze unveiled the MM-100 in April 2023, with the headphones happening sale within the month of August. It is now accessible globally by way of audio retailers and Audeze distributors, and in North America, you may get your palms on the MM-100 for $399.

Contemplating the affordability of those headphones, there’s longer-than-usual wait instances. That is if you happen to’re shopping for straight from Audeze; you can even get the MM-100 by way of Amazon, the place it’s promoting for a similar $399. Whereas most Audeze merchandise have an ordinary three-year guarantee, the MM-100 comes with a one-year guarantee.

Audeze MM-100: Design and luxury

Audeze MM-100 review

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Aside from the scarf, there is not a lot in the best way of a distinction between the MM-100 and MM-500. Audeze retained the identical styling and design aesthetic, and also you get a gunmetal gray shade scheme that appears elegant. Audeze makes use of plastic within the building of the ear cups, however the yoke and grilles are made out of a magnesium alloy, and the scarf is original out of metal.

Audeze MM-100 review

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The construct high quality is simply as beautiful as costlier Audeze headsets just like the LCD-X and MM-500, and the most effective half is that the MM-100 is significantly lighter than different Audeze merchandise I used to this point. Coming in at 475g, it’s 20g lighter than the MM-500, and that distinction is noticeable. Do not get me fallacious; the MM-100 continues to be on the heavier aspect, however it’s considerably lighter than most Audeze designs — the LCD-X weighs 612g.

Audeze MM-100 review

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As is the case with the remainder of the model’s merchandise, the grille has Audeze’s distinctive stylized A brand on both aspect, with Audeze branding on the suitable and Manny Marroquin to the left. Whereas the design is essentially an identical to the MM-500, Audeze switched out its commonplace mini-XLR connectors to three.5mm, and that makes the MM-100 rather more versatile. What’s fascinating is that it’s good to join only one aspect to the cable, supplying you with the flexibleness of plugging within the headset both by way of the left or proper connectors.

Audeze MM-100 review

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The bundled braided cable is of an honest high quality, but it surely would not have a sheath, and it ends in a 6.35mm plug — like most different Audeze headsets. I might have favored a 3.5mm plug contemplating the class the MM-100 is debuting in, as a result of because it stands, the selection of plug limits its usability with transportable sources.

Audeze MM-100 review

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Audeze went with a floating headband design with the MM-100, and it does job distributing the load of the headset evenly. The one situation I’ve on this space is that the adjustability of the scarf is restricted; you may’t transfer the stalk up or down, and you will as an alternative have to regulate the leather-based band between three notches. Whereas that is an inelegant system, you will not have to regulate the band too many instances.

Audeze MM-100 review

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The MM-100 is probably the most snug Audeze headset I used up to now, and that features the lighter LCD-GX gaming headset. An enormous a part of that has to do with the clamping power; it is not as excessive because the MM-500, and mixed with the lighter design, the MM-100 is right for prolonged use.

Audeze MM-100 review

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The ear pads have a fake leather-based end, and so they’re extraordinarily snug even after extended use. They do not have a vented design, however due to the inherent open-back nature of the MM-100, you get good air flow. General, Audeze nailed the design transient with the MM-100, and the headphones have sturdy construct high quality and are mild sufficient that you may put on them for hours on finish.

Audeze MM-100: Sound high quality

Audeze MM-100 review

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With a sensitivity of 98dB/1mW and impedance of 18Ω, it is effortlessly simple to drive the MM-100, however like all Audeze merchandise, you can also make probably the most out of the planar drivers by pairing it with an honest supply. On that be aware, the MM-100 makes use of the identical 90mm planar magnetic drivers because the MM-500, and it has Audeze’s Fluxor magnet array.

I used the MM-100 with the Fiio K19 DAC more often than not, switching over to the Q7 Bluetooth DAC to make use of with a telephone. Any supply that is capable of ship over 250mW of energy must be ample to drive the MM-100 effectively.

As for the sound, Audeze retained the same tonality because the MM-500. The MM-100 has bass extension, and whereas the low-end is impartial, you get rumble that is gratifying together with quick transients. The mids are the place the MM-100 really shines; it has a lift within the mid-range that provides added heat and readability to vocals, and it sounds unbelievable.

The treble is clear and detailed, and whereas there’s some sparkle, it would not sound harsh, and there’s no sibilance. There’s good dynamics and instrument separation — as you’d think about on a headset aimed toward studio use — and the mid-forward presentation means the MM-100 is a superb alternative as a reference headset.

Audeze MM-100: The competitors

Audeze MM-100 review

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HiFiMan’s Sundara continues to be a stalwart on this phase, and at $299, it’s also a fantastic worth. It has the same bass presentation because the MM-100, and also you get a barely larger treble elevation. That mentioned, the MM-100 has a transparent benefit within the mids, and I just like the design a bit higher.

Sennheiser’s HD660S2 is an efficient various as effectively if you happen to want a reference headset. It’s costlier than the MM-100 at $499, however you get a impartial sound that is supreme for studio use in addition to informal listening classes.

Audeze MM-100: Must you purchase it?

Audeze MM-100 review

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You should purchase this if:

  • You want an reasonably priced pair of Audeze headphones
  • You need headphones with an beautiful sound
  • You want a sub-$500 reference headset

You should not purchase this if:

  • You want a light-weight headset

The MM-100 is one among Audeze’s most important merchandise up to now. It has the identical nice design and construct high quality because the MM-500, and it sounds remarkably comparable. Sure, Audeze made just a few tweaks to the design to carry the price of the headset right down to $399, however the MM-100 would not look or really feel like a finances product.

Just like the MM-500, the MM-100 nails the technical presentation, and it has bass extension that permits mainstream music to shine. The energetic mids might not be to everybody’s tastes, but it surely provides the headset lots of character, and it has treble presence.

In the end, it is the worth that provides the MM-100 a definite benefit. It’s designed as a studio headset, but it surely’s simply as snug for every day listening classes, and the sound high quality on provide makes it among the best contenders on this class.

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