Audio-Technica ATH-M20x vs Audio-Technica ATH-M30x

Audio-Technica is known for producing audio equipment that offers brilliant value for money. 

The ATH-M20x and ATH-M30x headphones are no different. Both are very similar but have subtle differences that are important to know. 


In this guide, we’ll have a look at what makes both models stand out and then have a look at which one is better for you.

Great value for money

The aspect that marks both headphones out is that they both offer you great value for money. The M30x is a little bit more expensive but that’s due to it being a later model. 

If you’re looking for an affordable pair of high-quality headphones then theyre both are a great option.

The foam cups on the ears meet the most important standard for me, and that’s comfort. 

Who’s the winner?
Price: M20x
Comfort: Draw

Where else are they the same?

They use a compression fit and many of the same materials. ATH is known for their build quality and that’s why these have been best sellers for so long. 

Both have an identical cable of 3 meters which is more than long enough for most users. Their sound quality performance is very similar but there are a few differences. 

Who’s the winner?
Adjustability: Draw
Build quality: Draw

Sound quality

Both headphones offer a good level of sound quality. With the M30x you do get a slightly more powerful frequency range of 15-22k Hz when compared to the M20x where you get a range of 15-20k Hz. 

There is also a difference in power handling with 700 mW on the M20x compared to the 1300 mW on the M30x.

An area where both headphones don’t excel is in isolation. They are quite average in isolating the sound but this is to be expected with headphones at this price point. It’s definitely not the worst out there but it’s an important point to consider. 

Where both do excel is in the bass as this is punchy and offers great depth. You’ll love being able to listen to the rich depths of sound with bass-heavy music. The mid accuracy is also good but both can be a little lacking in the treble.

Who’s the winner?
Frequency range: M30x
Power handling: M30x
Isolation: None
Bass, Mid & Treble: Draw

How easy are they to use?

One specification where the M20x does beat the M30x is in the weight. At 190g, the M20x is a little bit lighter than the 220g you see with the later model. You’ll only feel a minimal difference when they are on your head and therefore that’s not a huge issue.

Perhaps the standout feature of the M30x is the fact they can be folded which the other model cannot be. This makes them a lot more portable for those who travel frequently with their headphones. The importance of this will depend on your needs. 

If you’re looking for the highest levels of connectivity then you won’t find that here. Neither model has audio controls on them or Bluetooth connectivity. With the long audio cable they both have, that’s not going to be seen as much of an issue.

Who’s the winner?
Weight: M20x
Storage: M30x
Connectivity: None

Which model is better?

Both of them are great headphones and are very similar. The M30x is the latter model and slightly edges the contest. 

That’s due to the higher frequency it can reach and the fact that they can be folded up for increased portability.
They are slightly more expensive and therefore you need to weigh this up against those advantages. The M20x has that lighter weight and it could be that you prefer that. In most other ways they are quite similar with good sound quality.

Whichever one you choose, you can be safe in the knowledge that you are going to get headphones that are excellent value for money. They both look great, have brilliant bass and have an excellent build quality that you’re going to love.

Author Picture - Conor


Hey everyone 🙂 My name is Conor. I'm passionate about technology, zen, and improving the quality of life so many of us share at a desk!

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