Master & Dynamic’s MW75 headphones sound incredible but cost a small fortune

Master & Dynamic’s MW75 headphones sound incredible but cost a small fortune

MSRP $599.00

“Ultra-premium sound and elegance for an ultra-premium price.”


  • Luxurious materials
  • Top-notch construct quality
  • Incredible sound
  • Excellent battery life
  • Digital wired connection
  • Wear sensor


  • Very expensive
  • Huge carrying case
  • Heavy
  • Annoying ANC mode switching

Master & Dynamic (M&D) is an organization that’s just as obsessive about how its products look because it is with how they perform. You would possibly even say that style is the element that almost all sets it aside from the likes of Bose, Sony, Sennheiser, and Apple. You possibly can see the roles style and design have played in its previous wireless headphones and wireless earbuds, just like the MW65 or the MW08/MW08 Sport. Those products were crafted with exotic materials like glass, leather, high-polish ceramics, chrome steel, aluminum, and carbon fiber — indeed, precisely the sorts of materials you’d anticipate finding in a luxury automotive, and with correspondingly high prices.

And nowhere is that this approach more evident than in M&D’s latest audio creation, the $599 MW75, a set of wireless, noise-canceling headphones that push style, audio quality, and price to all latest heights. They’re definitely not for everybody, but when you could have the money, they’re a tempting toy.

Master & Dynamic is currently taking email sign-ups on the MW75 landing page if you desire to be notified when these headphones go on sale, but the corporate tells Digital Trends that it expects that can occur on June 28, 2022.

A living proof

Master & Dynamic MW75 seen in open case.Simon Cohen / Digital Trends

M&D’s previous flagship cans, the $499 MW65, didn’t ship with a travel case — only a protective pouch. That appeared like an odd selection for such an expensive set of headphones, and clearly, M&D has decided to rectify that with the MW75 by going as far in the other way as you’ll be able to go. They arrive packaged in a zippered, formed-felt hard case with thick sidewalls. Only Bose offers an identical level of protection.

Inside, you’ll find the numerous included accessories thoughtfully arranged in a semi-rigid plastic housing: A USB-C cable for charging and digital audio, a 3.5mm jack-to-USB-C for analog audio, a USB-A-to-USB-C adapter, an airplane adapter, and a 3.5mm-to-quarter-inch adapter.

Master & Dynamic MW75 carry case in closed position.Simon Cohen / Digital Trends

Nevertheless, the associated fee of such a well-appointed and protective case is size. Though its width, length, and rounded-triangle shape are all a tad smaller than the case Sony includes with its WH-1000XM5 headphones, the M&D case is far thicker: Almost 4 inches at its widest point, versus 2.5 inches for Sony’s. For frequent travelers, that’s going to mean some serious rationalization around which other items will grace the inside of their Louis Vitton carry-on.

Still, M&D deserves props for the incontrovertible fact that it uses completely recyclable materials for its product boxes and that you just won’t discover a single polybag and even a lot as a disposable twist-tie.

Maximum design

Front view of man wearing Master & Dynamic MW75.Simon Cohen / Digital Trends

While Sony, Bose, Apple, and (seemingly) Sennheiser are all taking their flagship headphones in a more form-fitting and — in some cases — much lighter-weight direction, M&D is marching proudly in the opposite direction. The MW75 have big, thick earcups that protrude a good amount from the edges of your head. The outer surface is a sheet of tempered glass, encircled by a perforated aluminum ring, and printed with M&D’s hexagonal logo. It’s a fingerprint magnet, however it sure looks sharp when clean.

Construction is top-notch, with near-perfect seams. Gone is the MW65’s earcup fork and external slider rod design, replaced as a substitute with a surprising polished aluminum single-sided pivot that extends into fully integrated sliders that disappear into the leather headband. It jogs my memory an amazing deal of the now-defunct Parrot Zik, a set of headphones that were ahead of their time. In line with the trend of the day — and never one I necessarily support — the MW75 fold flat but don’t fold up, which is a component of the explanation that they need such a big case. Thankfully, when flat, the ear cushions face down in order that your collarbones are shielded from the hard outer surfaces of the earcups while you wear them around your neck.

Master & Dynamic MW75 leaning against their carry case (front view).Simon Cohen / Digital Trends

Small aluminum control buttons grace the rear of every earcup (two on the left, three on the proper), providing you with access to all available functions like power, pairing, energetic noise cancellation (ANC), volume, and playback. Just like the Apple AirPods Max, the plush, leather-wrapped ear cushions are magnetically latched to the earcups, making them a cinch to interchange should the necessity arise.

But all of those features and materials come at the associated fee of increased weight. The MW75 tilt the scales at a hefty 11.9 ounces, making them one in all the heavier sets of wireless cans you’ll be able to buy, though still well shy of the AirPods Max’s neck-crushing 13.6 ounces.

Overall, the MW75 are big but beautiful. And in the event you don’t take care of our review model’s Gunmetal/Black Leather attire, you can even pick from Silver Metal/Gray Leather, Silver Metal/Brown Leather, and Black Metal/Black Leather combos.

Comfort, controls, and connections

Master & Dynamic MW75 with included accessories.Simon Cohen / Digital Trends

There aren’t any two ways about it: The MW75 are heavy. M&D has done a superb job of balancing and distributing that weight, however it stays noticeable, especially while you move your head about. Those luxurious ear cushions offer a glove-like fit, but additionally they push the mass of the earcups away out of your head. That creates inertia: Turn your head, and it takes a moment for the headphones to catch up. For that reason, I don’t recommend them for any type of physical activity like running or the gym. Walking is tremendous, and there needs to be no problem with using them while commuting, aside from a couple of envious stares.

Despite the majority, I still found them comfortable, even after two hours of continuous use, but in the event you need wireless headphones for long flights, the Sony WH-1000XM5 or Bose Noise Cancelling Headphones 700 are each higher options.

Close up of Master & Dynamic MW75 right earcup.Simon Cohen / Digital Trends

The controls are excellent: Easy to seek out, easy to press, and so they offer great tactile feedback. M&D combines power and pairing right into a single button and provides you a dedicated button for ANC. This might be customized within the companion app so you’ll be able to decide to cycle between ANC, ambient, and off modes, or any combination thereof. On the proper earcup, a raised multifunction button eliminates any doubt as to which button it is advisable to press.

Recent to the MW75 is wear detection. With this feature enabled, the headphones will auto-pause your music while you remove them and resume while you put them back on. But mysteriously, the auto-resume function has a tiny window of just three seconds. When you leave the headphones off your head for any longer than that, you’ll must restart your music manually via the controls or your phone. For the time being, there’s no strategy to adjust that three-second period, but M&D might include this in a future firmware update.

It’s, quite simply, the perfect overall sound quality I’ve heard from a set of wireless headphones.

Wireless headphones normally include an analog cable option — sometimes it really works when the batteries are dead and sometimes it doesn’t. However the MW75 are magnificently equipped to handle quite a lot of wired scenarios: The USB-C-to-USB-C cable gives you a digital wired interface, which implies you should utilize the headphones’ internal digital-to-analog converter (DAC) for a fully pristine connection, without the necessity for a headphone DAC/amp (lots of which might cost upward of $200). This cable needs the headphones to be utilized in their powered-on state. However the 3.5mm-to-USB-C cable doesn’t. It could be used to hearken to analog sources with or without battery power.

Close-up of Master & Dynamic MW75's hinge.Simon Cohen / Digital Trends

The wireless connection is solid and stable, but M&D doesn’t include technologies like Google Fast Pair or Microsoft Swift Pair, so that you’ll still need to seek out the MW75 in your device’s Bluetooth settings. Given that almost all folks will only pair their headphones a handful of times, that is hardly a deal breaker. More importantly, these cans support Bluetooth Multipoint, so you’ll be able to keep them connected to any two devices (like a PC and a phone) concurrently.

When you’re an ardent Google Assistant (GA) user, it’s possible you’ll be a bit upset to learn that the MW75 would not have GA built-in, something the MW65 offered. You possibly can still trigger your phone’s native voice assistant using the control buttons, but you’ll be able to’t summon it together with your voice.

Sound quality

Side view of man wearing Master & Dynamic MW75.Simon Cohen / Digital Trends

Master & Dynamic headphones and earbuds have all the time been superb performers, and the MW75 aren’t any exception. They possess an impressively balanced and wealthy signature that enhances virtually any music genre you care to throw at them. Resonant bass is accompanied by detailed midtones and absolutely crystalline high frequencies. It’s, quite simply, the perfect overall sound quality I’ve heard from a set of wireless headphones so far, beating even Sony’s WH-1000XM5.

At this stratospheric level of product, comparisons can get tricky: You must switch backwards and forwards between the XM5 and the MW75 multiple times, across quite a lot of tracks, to get a way of where the 2 diverge, but diverge they do. The MW75 have a precision that’s remarkable. This comes across in each the standard of the sound — from the pluck of a guitar string to a success of a cymbal — and likewise within the resolution of the soundstage.

What does that mean, exactly? With the XM5, you get a powerful sense of the location of varied instruments and vocals, but with the MW75, it seems like you’ll be able to take a measuring tape and say, to inside an inch or so, just how far apart the musicians are standing.

Showing Master & Dynamic MW75's removable ear cushions.Simon Cohen / Digital Trends

M&D is so confident in its tuning that it only offers a couple of scant EQ adjustments within the app: Bass boost, bass cut, and vocal boost. Bass boost, despite its name, is barely a light enhancement of lower frequencies, while bass cut and vocal boost each provide pretty dramatic changes to the sound signature. Neither enhanced my enjoyment of music, but I could see vocal boost being helpful for some spoken-word content or possibly when using the MW75 for calls.

These headphones also profit from Qualcomm’s aptX Adaptive tech. When connected to compatible Android phones, they’ll mechanically connect at the next data rate for as much as 24-bit/96kHz (lossy) hi-res sound quality or cut back all the way down to 16-bit/44.1kHz when the signal is weaker. It could make a difference, but only under very specific circumstances. You’ll need access to lossless hi-res audio, like Amazon Music or Apple Music’s collection of lossless tracks (or your individual lossless ALAC/FLAC tracks), a really quiet place to listen, and to be in close proximity to your phone (across the room probably won’t work).

Call quality might be excellent in quiet conditions — your voice will come through with total clarity.

But the good news is that in the event you want the perfect possible sound quality, it’s nearby by simply using the included USB-C-to-USB-C cable. You’ll get a real lossless 24/96 signal that never degrades, and it really works on any PC, Mac, or Android device with a USB-C port. Sadly, which means iPhone users are once more not noted. They don’t get aptX Adaptive, and the USB-C cable won’t work, even with a USB-C-to-Lightning adapter (yup, I attempted it).

The analog connection is nearly pretty much as good, though in this example, your results will likely be partially determined by your source device’s DAC and amp — especially in the event you use the MW75 of their powered-down state. But I like to recommend avoiding this in the event you can: M&D’s amplification and signal processing (each of that are bypassed when the cans are turned off) add a lot to the experience that anything less just pales by comparison.

Noise cancellation and call quality

Close-up of Master & Dynamic MW75's earcup, hinge, and mic.Simon Cohen / Digital Trends

With 4 mics dedicated to ANC and an extra 4 mics for voice pickup, the MW75 is loaded for bear. Unfortunately, it takes greater than a bushel of mics to make these features perform, and Master & Dynamic still has some work to do.

Not that ANC is bad by any means — it’s actually superb at coping with quite a lot of annoying background seems like traffic, droning machinery, and even the chattering din of voices in a Starbucks. It’s even remarkably adept at coping with wind noise.

However the execution isn’t pretty much as good. When using them only for a little bit of quiet (no audio), there’s a noticeable background hiss, whatever the three available ANC modes (max, all day, or adaptive) you’ve engaged. There’s also a voice announcement of mode changes between off, ANC on, and ambient (transparency) that may’t be turned off. But essentially the most annoying aspect is the just about two-second interruption of your music that follows these announcements each time you turn.

Close-up of Master & Dynamic MW75's controls.Simon Cohen / Digital Trends

Ambient listening works well — whether in voice (higher for conversations) or awareness (general activities) mode — though you won’t get Apple’s as-yet unvanquished level of complete transparency.

Call quality might be excellent in quiet conditions — your voice will come through with total clarity. Under noisy conditions, this takes a little bit of a success. Your callers won’t have the ability to listen to those loud background sounds, but they are going to hear the effect the MW75’s noise-canceling circuits have in your voice because it wavers out and in and undergoes what’s, at times, heavy compression.

My review unit wasn’t in a position to perform calls while in ambient mode, a limitation M&D says it’s working to repair with an upcoming firmware update.

Still, as a companion for Zoom or Teams calls while indoors, they’re greater than effective.

Battery life

Master & Dynamic MW75 leaning against their carry caseSimon Cohen / Digital Trends

M&D claims 32 hours of play time when ANC is off and 28 when it’s on (assuming you’re listening at a 50% volume level). Those are very decent numbers, and from what I can tell, they’re accurate. The MW75 will beat the AirPods Max and the Bose Noise Cancelling Headphones 700 (each of which only get 20 hours of ANC time). But even in the event you begin to run low, a wonderful quick-charge feature will buy you an additional six hours of use for just quarter-hour of charging time.

Our take

Few folks will have the ability to administer the Master & Dynamic MW75’s wallet-crushing $599 price, but those that do will likely be rewarded with unsurpassed sound quality in each wired and wireless modes, and a luxurious and comfy design (despite being on the heavy side).

When you care a couple of lossless digital connection to your music, it’s possible you’ll well have the ability to justify the additional cost, because generally, the MW75 can operate with no separate headphone DAC/amp — a $100 to $250 savings. They’re not perfect in every way, but that simply won’t matter.

Is there a greater alternative?

For sound quality, no. The MW75 won’t be the kings of the audio hill perpetually, but right away, they’re unbeatable, no less than in relation to wireless headphones. In addition they make a powerful argument for many who seek the next standard in design and materials — only the AirPods Max offer serious competition on this department, but I’d argue the MW75 look more sophisticated even in the event that they can’t boast Apple’s impressively low-profile shape.

But for comfort, noise cancellation, call quality, customization, and features, the Sony WH-1000XM5 are still the perfect, and albeit, they’re not that far behind the MW75 on sound.

How long will they last?

Treat these headphones well and they’ll likely last for a few years of use. The materials and construct quality are superb, the carry case offers excellent protection, and the ear cushions are quickly and simply replaced if needed. Only battery life will limit their full lifespan, but that is true of all wireless headphones. Master & Dynamic backs the MW75 with a normal one-year warranty, which doesn’t cover normal wear and tear.

Must you buy them?

If you could have the means and are willing to trade a few of their limitations for what they do well, then yes — you will likely be rewarded with a tremendous set of headphones with few equals.

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