The Master & Dynamic MW50+ is the updated model of the MW50 wireless on-ear headphones that were released just last year. We tested the MW50 and quite liked it. So, what are the differences between the two headphones and are they worth the upgrade?
Design & Features
The MW50+ headphones come with some accessories like extra earpads, a USB-C charging cable, a 3.5mm audio cable, and a canvas carrying bag.
Similar to other Master & Dynamic headphones, the manufacturer still uses premium materials for the MW50+. You can feel it when you touch the headphones or when the earpads sit on your ears. Specifically, we have premium grain cowhide leather on the headband, lambskin leather on the earpads, and a stainless steel and aluminum chassis.
The most interesting feature of the headphones is swappable earpads. The MW50+ is installed with a pair of on-ear pads out of the box, however, you can find an extra pair of over-ear pads inside the leather box. The pads are attached magnetically, so you can replace the earpads with ease. Just pull the earpads out and snap the new earpads onto the earcups. The only problem is that the over-ear pads can be dropped out sometimes, especially when you leave the headphones in your bag. Having said that, they are quite secure for normal use. The earpads won’t fall out as long as you’re not trying to do so.
Another problem is that I couldn’t adjust volume level using the earcup controls. There are 3 buttons on the right earcups. I can use the play/pause button or long press on the +/- buttons to skip tracks, however, I can’t press on the same buttons to adjust the volume. I tested on both Android and iOS devices and they just don’t work.
If you already have the MW50, you don’t need to buy the MW50+ since you can get the over-ear pads for just $49.
My favorite feature of the Master & Dynamic headphones is their exceptional Bluetooth connection. I’ve used hundreds of wireless headphones but the Bluetooth range of the MW50+ is unrivaled. When using other headphones, music tracks keep being interrupted as soon as I walk out of my room, then the Bluetooth connection is dropped when I walk further. The Bluetooth connection of the MW50+ is so great that I can walk throughout my apartment without missing a single note. This is the result of the advanced antenna design built into the left earcup.
The battery life of the headphones is also quite good. I could easily use them for more than a week on a single charge. According to the manufacturer, it could reach 16 hours.
In terms of audio quality, I still can hear the familiar sound signature as heard on Master & Dynamic headphones. The MW50+ uses the same 40mm Beryllium Diaphragm drivers seen on the MW50, so I can’t see the difference when using the on-ear earpads.
My first impression with the headphones was terrible. When I paired the MW50+ headphones to my MacBook, the sound was seriously distorted in the upper mids and highs. The distortion was so obvious that I couldn’t enjoy any music genre. I was so disappointed because I didn’t have the problem with my MW50. Therefore, I gave it another try by pairing the MW50+ to my iPhone. Fortunately, the problem disappears this time and I could experience the same sound that I loved on the MW50.
The MW50+ still delivers a full and rich sound with a slightly boosted bass and recessed highs. The bass is not really punchy while the treble is not well-extended, so the sound might be a little muddy for audiophiles. After changing to the over-ear pads, the sound is actually improved as the mids are less aggressive and the soundstage becomes wider. The pads are also more comfortable for long listening sessions.
- Premium build and design
- Unrivaled Bluetooth connection
- Good battery life on a single charge
- Entertaining sound
- Slightly muddy sound
- Volume buttons don’t work properly
The Master & Dynamic MW50+ are among my favorite Bluetooth headphones as they are great for commutes and traveling. I even prefer these ones over the Beyerdynamic Aventho Wireless. Most people would love the premium design and the rich sound coming from the headphones. The swappable earpads is also an advantage as you can use the on-ear pads when going outside and use the over-ear pads at home.
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