Audio-Technica has taken its popular M50X headphones and added a built-in microphone to create a headset that the company claims is perfect for livestreaming content creators.
There are two models available in total. The ATH-M50xSTS comes with a 3.5mm headphone jack and XLR microphone connector (with a one-fourth-inch adaptor in the box), while the ATH-M50xSTS-USB has a USB-A connector and USB-C adaptor in the box. But the most important spec is that both headphones use the same 45mm drivers that have made the M50X headphones so popular across the internet.
As my former colleague Vlad Savov wrote in 2018, the original M50 headphones from 2007 “were designed for professional use, [but] their indestructible build, reasonable price, and sharp, incisive sound were warmly received by people looking for something more hi-fi than the dominant Beats options.”
In addition to this 45mm driver, both headphones include a cardioid condenser capsule that Audio-Technica says is “adopted from” its 20-Series microphones. The company has previously sold a detachable microphone meant for use with its M50X headphones, but now, it comes with one built in. You can flip the mic arm up to automatically mute the microphone, which is an increasingly common feature with gaming headsets.
Other specs include the fact that the cables for both headphones are 2m (roughly 6.5 feet) long and are nondetachable. The USB model includes an analog-to-digital converter that supports sampling rates of up to 24-bit / 96kHz.
Between these headsets and microphone specialist Rode releasing its first pair of headphones last year, it’s nice to see manufacturers with a background in audio production getting more serious about streamers.
The ATH-M50xSTS retail for $199 (£169, €199) while the ATH-M50xSTS-USB will cost $229 (£199, €229), which represents a small price premium over the $168 the standard M50X’s are currently selling for on Amazon. They’re available in the US now, and go on sale in Europe next month.
Update January 5th, 11:06AM ET: Updated with US pricing and availability information.