Review: Master & Dynamic MW65 Active Noise-Cancelling Wireless Headphones

Advanced technology in a sleek and sophisticated package
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It's crazy to think that, not all that long ago, wireless headphones weren't really a thing. Sure, there were Bluetooth earpieces, but high-quality headphones just weren't possible. Fortunately, with how quickly technology advances, we didn't have to go all too long without them. Nowadays, save for DJ or studio/audiophile headphones, the thought of headphones with wires seems almost archaic. However, most people do think of wireless cans, the first thing they probably think of is either Beats or AirPods. But what if you aren't most people? What if you are interested in a sleek, well built, modern headphone with all the bells and whistles? There are plenty of options out there, but perhaps none match the styling and quality of Master & Dynamic's MW65 model. In this review, we'll be taking a look at their flagship headphone, its features, and my overall experience with them.

What are they?

If you're unfamiliar with Master & Dynamic, it's actually a fairly new brand, only having been founded in 2014. Inspired by the timeless look of WW2 aviator headphones, M&D set out to create a beautiful, high-quality headphone that would stand the test of time in both visual design and durability. The MW65 is the latest innovation in their over-ear headphone design and features a sleek all-aluminum build with premium leather detailing, with perhaps their biggest feature being their active noise canceling technology. 

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Key features

Being the flagship headphone, the MW65 is packed to the brim with features. As stated, beyond their sound quality, their biggest feature is their active noise-canceling technology, which is due to the dual mics that filter out the noise in any environment. Another big feature is their AptX driver which allows you to stream uncompressed audio without loss of resolution. Other features include 24-hour battery life,  USB-C cable with USB-A and flight adapters, 3.5 mm cable, and a canvas carry pouch. They even have support for use with Google Assistant and come in 4 different colors.

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My experience

Being in this industry, over time, you become familiar with most brands. Perhaps not personally, which was my case with Master & Dynamic. I'd seen their headphones plenty of times but never had a chance to try them out. From a purely aesthetic perspective, I have to say they do look extremely sophisticated. Like something your dad had when you were younger, never let you touch. Upon first placing them on my head, I noticed that they were very lightweight and comfortable. Not the lightest pair of headphones I've ever worn, but comfortable most definitely. The earpads are plush and sit nicely over the ear. In terms of features, I thoroughly enjoyed the noise canceling. There are three levels: High Power for city streets, airplanes, and very noisy environments, Low Power for lower noise or windy environments, and off. If you've never experienced full noise cancellation, it's a trip the first few times you use it. It's like you've almost disappeared from your surroundings. 

And now for the most important part. How do they actually sound? To the average user, they will surely sound amazing. The sound is rich and detailed, with nice punchy lows, and clean crisp highs. I found the mids to be scooped out, which I was expecting given this is a consumer headphone. The reason for this is it gives a much more "vivid" sound to the audio, which is what the majority of consumers want, which isn't a bad thing by any means. But if you're looking for a pure and 100% accurate reproduction of the music, these aren't for you. Again, it's down to taste. Sometimes I don't want 100% accurate either. Could you use these for DJing? Sure. Although I would probably keep them in the house. 

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Final thoughts

Overall, I'm very impressed by the MW65. They are stylish, comfortable, pack all the modern tech features you'd want and sound pretty damn good. They make working in noisy environments a breeze and are rugged enough to take a decent beating, although I wouldn't try and purposefully abuse them. If you're looking for a modern and sophisticated headphone for casual listening while on the go, these are most definitely worth checking out. Although, one thing we haven't discussed is the price, and all these premium features come don't come cheap, but there are certainly more expensive options out there.

Price

$499

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