Master & Dynamic has officially announced its newest flagship pair of noise-canceling cans: the Master & Dynamic MW75. These are the direct successor to the 2019-released MW65, and they’re a big change. The new cans have a completely new look, now with shimmering tempered glass earcups; improved features and sonic capabilities; and, maybe most significantly, a new $599 price tag (up from $499) that puts them above Apple’s AirPods Max in the race for the most expensive noise-canceling headphones you can buy.
I’ve been testing the MW75 for the better part of the last month, and I can tell you they are elite. The sound quality, noise-cancellation, features and overall look and feel — it’s all top of the class.
The $599 price tag is excessive, for sure — but Master & Dynamic has always made luxury audio products that, because of their premium materials (and unique look), are going to cost more than most. And now that Apple has proven that people are willing to spend more than $300 to $400 on a great pair of wireless headphones, M&D has decided to jump on that bandwagon, too.
What’s Good About the M&D MW75 Headphones?
The MW75 are jam-packed with features and abilities
The MW75 are a huge leap forward for Master & Dynamic because, well, they deliver on a lot of fronts that the MW65 lacked.
They are the company’s first over-ear headphones that work with a companion app (M&D Connect), which allows you to tweak the EQ of your music. They have multiple noise-canceling modes (including adaptive noise-canceling, which adjusts the noise-cancellation depending on the environment you’re in) as well as a transparency mode. And they have optical sensors so that the headphones will auto-play and auto-pause your music every time you put on and take off your headphones. Most of the abilities are shared by other flagship noise-canceling headphones by Sony, Bose and Apple, but the company’s older MW65 cans lacked them all.
A reflective new look
This isn’t me taking a shot at the older MW65 cans — which were gorgeous in their own right — but the MW75 are definitely look fresh. In addition to the anodized aluminum frame and leather (lambskin) accents of the MW65, Master & Dynamic has given the MW75 new tempered glass earcups. This gives the MW75 a shimmering, reflective new look that I quite like, even if it does make them more prone to fingerprints.
Thankfully, physical buttons
The value of nice, click-y buttons should never be underestimated. At least that’s my opinion. I understand that people like the fancy swipe and tap features that many of today’s more popular noise-canceling headphones have — specifically the Sony WH-1000XM5s — but I’m a big fan on knowing where a button is and exactly what it does. There’s less room for making mistakes.
And that’s where the MW75 delivers. It has nice buttons on both the left and right ear cups that just make it easy to switch mode, power the headphones on and off, and just adjusting playback. Heck, I even love the fact that every time you press the button that switches between noise-canceling and transparency modes, there’s a clear voice that lets you know what mode you’re now in. (It sounds obvious, but many popular over-ear cans don’t do this.)
More mics = better
Master & Dynamic has drastically improved the call quality of the MW75, and they’ve done this primarily by giving it more microphones. The MW75 has a total of eight built-in microphones — four for its noise-canceling and transparency modes and four for calls — which this is a big upgrade from the MW65’s two. The result is that calls, whether it’s on my phone or a video call on my computer, really are crisp and clear.
What’s Not Ideal About the M&D MW75 Headphones?
Damn, that price
There’s no getting around the fact: $599 for a pair of noise-canceling headphones is hella expensive.
Off the top of my head, I can’t think of any other flagship noise-canceling headphones that cost more than M&D’s new MW75. And despite that fact, I can’t with good conscious tell you that the MW75 sound better or have superior noise-canceling. In fact, I’d put Apple’s AirPods Max and the new Sony WH-1000XM5 above the MW75 in both those categories. Even if it’s not by a long shot.
Sound quality and support for immersive technologies aren’t quite up to that price
There’s no doubt that the M&D MW75 are excellent-sounding wireless headphones, but at $599 you’d probably be expecting a little more. They have the same 40mm Beryllium drivers as their predecessors, for example, so the overall sound quality with noise-cancellation turned off (which you should do for the best quality audio when listening in quiet environments) isn’t a night-and-day upgrade over the MW65s.
Also, unlike AirPods Max and other flagship headphones, the M&D MW75 the latest and great immersive sound technologies such as Spatial Audio and Dolby Atmos. (That said, M&D could roll out support in the future via firmware updates.)
As for sound quality specs, the MW75 support up to 24-bit/ 48-kHz audio when playing music wirelessly over Bluetooth. And they support up to 24-bit / 96-kHz audio while using an analog connection via the included USB-C to USB-C cable.
The Master & Dynamic MW75: The Verdict
Master & Dynamic’s newest noise-canceling headphones, the MW75, are excellent — yet they feel like a bit of an indulgence at this price. You can buy more affordable wireless headphones, like Apple’s AirPods Max or Sony’s WH-1000XM5, that sound arguably better and may even offer better active noise-cancellation.
The bottom line is if you’re interested in buying the MW75, you’re getting them just as much for their sound quality and noise-canceling abilities as you are their “cool factor” and design. And, quite frankly, you likely aren’t worried about their admittedly exorbitant price tag.
The Master & Dynamic MW75 headphones will be available for purchase on June 28.
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