In this Avantone MP1 MixPhones review, I’ll discuss what features and aspects make it an awesome great pro audio choice, plus what others have been saying, some essential details on the sound quality (like the Avantone MP1 frequency response), a few minor drawbacks it might have, and other things to considering purchasing.
By the end of this post, you should know the MP1’s best features, how well it performs, be able to decide for yourself whether this is right for you (hint: it probably is), and where you can get the best deal on them.
Now to begin!
Avantone MP1 MixPhones Review
- Product: Avantone Pro MP1 MixPhones
- Standard Price: See here
- MPN Rating: 4.5/5 stars
- Frequency Response: 18Hz – 25kHz
- Driver size: Large format 50mm drivers
- Rated power:15mW
- Maximum power: 30mW
- SPL: 113dB IEC-318@1mW, 1kHz
- Impedance: 16ohm +/-2.4 (15%)
- Shipping Weight: 3lbs
- One straight 3m cable – 1/8″ TRS with threaded 1/4″ adapter
- One spring collapsible 1m cable – 1/8″ TRS with threaded 1/4″ adapter
- Soft carrying bag
- Padded box
Avantone Pro MP1 Review – Overview
The manufacturer claims that this is the first ever produced multi-purpose headphone for pro audio use. Meaning, you can use it for critical listening, tracking, and general listening purposes.
The “Triple Play Personal Monitor with Vari-Voice” makes it suitable for live sound monitoring, DJ, studio recording, mixing playback and other general listening applications. Hence, it was designed specifically as an all-around headphone for those looking for a single professional headphone for multiple listening purposes. This makes it ideal, I consider, for music producers and DJs on a budget, who don’t want to compromise on quality. Also, sometimes having less gear is more, for the sake of simplicity. So if one pair of headphones can do the job of three, that’s certainly a good thing to have.
According to the makers of these headphones, its design allows users to select between the normal neutral voiced stereo field (full range flat-response), mono, and a specially contoured “mix” mode, where the audio signals focus primarily on the midrange frequencies, simulating the sound of their other product, the Mixcubes. The real purpose of this, however, is to allow for clarity in the critical mixing frequencies, which can be found in the midrange.
In addition to the choices between listening modes, what also makes the MixPhones MP1 unique is that it was actually designed and created by professionals and end users alike within the music industry. What we get is a truly unique product, not just with the pro audio person’s needs in mind, but a beautiful design, visually pleasing for those who like to work outside the typical studio environment, as well as comfortable and insulated with generous padding for hours long of playback, mixing, and tracking.
That said, what makes these headphones a good buy for serious musicians, producers, DJs and aficionados?
In a pair of headphones, there are a couple of things to consider when buying one. One is the kind of sound you’re getting, the other is how well they’re designed for a comfortable fit.
One of the things to look for is the frequency response, as the midrange of a mix is one of the crucial trouble spots for many producers when trying to tweak their sounds. There have been very slim choices among studio headphones in being able to tweak these trouble spot areas, and the Avantone MP1 Frequency Response (18Hz to 25kHz) plus its unique “mix” mode, is one of the first to be designed with the midrange in mind.
Three Headphones in One
Avantone says they are the first to produce a pair of headphones that offer something called ‘Vari-Voice.’ This refers to the small, recessed toggle switch on the headphones themselves which, when selected, allows the users to switch between modes.
In the center position, there is ‘S‘, which makes the MP1 deliver a full-range stereo signal.
The ‘M‘ position sums the right and left channels to produce a mono down-fold signal.
The ‘C‘ position is a filtering feature, which emulates the characteristics of the mid-range heavy frequency response of small speakers, like laptop speakers, cheap headphones, or the MixCube, also by Avantone.
Its Comfort & Design
The second important thing to consider is the comfort and design, as you’ll be wearing them for a long time, hours on end.
Of these headphones, they appear to be very solidly made. They are a little bit heavier than more standard headphones, however (something typical of professional mixing headphones). But some others consider it “light”; I suppose it’s just a matter of opinion.
As I mentioned before, they are generously padded in the ear cups, plus have a pivot design to ensure a comfortable fit – again, pretty standard in studio headphones.
The nice thing about the design is that they look good. If you’re ever in a public environment and you need to quickly track or record something, you’d probably feel pretty good about yourself wearing what is considered a very aesthetically pleasing device.
The pivot, which makes it fit the shape to the angle of your ears for a comfortable fit, is often a weak point on most headphones. However, this pair uses all metal parts for the driver housings and headband, which means that they should be expected to last a long time.
Avantone MP1 MixPhones – General Considerations
What I Think
In doing my research for this Avantone Pro MP1 review, what kept standing out to me that made me curious and interested in purchasing it, is the fact that it has 3 modes of listening. I said this above already, but it bears noting again, since, as a producer myself, I know how important it is to get an honest sound from my headphones. It can be frustrating when I switch between headphones, monitors, and laptop speakers and I hear things that my headphones never pointed out to me. Even way after the production stage when. I will export my music from my DAW, listen to my tracks in the car or over someone else’s speakers, and be surprised by how it sounds. And it usually is something within the mid-range area.
I think the fact that these headphones have 3 different modes in one makes it a great consideration for studio headphones, as it broadens your listening options, allowing you to reduce the probability of unpleasant surprises in your mix.
What Others Think
Most pro audio users that have used these earphones speak of the beauty and the astounding sound quality of the MP1 MixPhones, even for its price, as well as its comfort and solid design. The general sum is that they are extremely comfortable, strong, durable, with the option to perform critical listening in the midrange trouble spot, a broad wide bandwidth, and good frequency response.
One user reviewed that he’s often disappointed that, a pair of headphones which are otherwise excellent in sound, are simply unwearable because of pure design. This doesn’t seem to be the case for the MP1, as the company pulled out no stops to create an exceptional pair of headphones that you can wear for hours, sounds great, and produces a clarity necessary for a getting the right sound. This is especially so, it seems, for those who have larger ears (like myself), who find that headphones, often times, press against the earlobes, causing pain after several hours of use. These headphones give me the impression, from reading user reviews that they’d suit people who tend to have this problem.
Pro & Cons of Avantone MP1 MixPhones
- Strong and sturdy design, thanks to metal parts
- Flat response means clarity in listening and mixing
- 3 listening modes means better more options
- Large comfortable ear cups, great for people who have a hard time finding comfortable headphones for their ears
- Beautiful design, might make it the envy of others
- Might be a little on the “large” side; those with smaller heads might find that a concern
- A few may actually not like its design
- Not foldable or collapsible; not the most portable option
Price & Comparable Options of the Avantone MP1
These headphones fall in in the “under 250” category (September 2017), which places them in the budget friend category for profession headphones. If you’re planning on getting a good pair of studio headphones that are professional, the price range of 150 to 200+ is to be expected, and given the features and comfort of this, this is a bargain.
If you want a similar product to this that costs a little less, a nice alternative is the Audio-Technica ATH-M50x. These produce a flat response just like the MP1 across a wide frequency response, useful mainly for mixing and tracking.
Another option for a similar same price is the Shure SRH840. I personally owned a pair of Shure headphones and found them to be long-lasting and good in quality. If you’re not too happy about the design of the MP1, and rather a single-purpose headphone dedicated to audio engineering for the same price, get these instead.
If you looking for something high end, you should get the Sennheiser HD 650. An industry leader in pro audio, you can count on them to deliver the best quality and clarity in your audio engineering. These are open back headphones, great for mixing and producing music, with a flat response across a much wider frequency response (10 Hz to 39,500), meaning more clarity in much lower basses and higher trebles.
Avantone MP1 MixPhones Review – Conclusions
This concludes my Avantone MP1 MixPhones review. Finding a good pair of headphones is important if you’re planning on doing any mixing, DJing, recording, or producing. Overall, the Avantone Pro MP1 proves to be an excellent choice for those seeking comfort and clarity. Being a beautiful pair of headphones, fit for both men and women, makes this also an exceptional pick.
It’s not hard to see why so many people in the pro audio arena are so excited about getting their hands on these, as the 3 listening modes allow for seamless switching between critical listening to general listening with ease and naturalness. Plus, after you’re done recording and producing, you can continue to use them for just general music listening. I think this is an excellent buyer’s choice, one which I would get if I were in the market for a new pair of headphones.