Pros: Wide frequency response, comfortable to wear
Cons: mid's slightly warm
Monster Turbine Pro Gold In Ear Headphones
Monster sent me these in-ear headphones at no charge in return for me writing and submitting a fair, honest review. This review is my own opinion and was not influenced or guided in any manner by Monster.
The primary attribute of good headphones is to be comfortable. They must provide hours of enjoyment without you feeling like your ears are going to fall off. These in-ear headphones meet this criteria. They are a pleasure to use. Monster provides a number of tips whereby you can find one that will be comfortable as well as create a good seal. The seal is paramount for any in-ear headphone to produce good bass response. Additionally, the ear seal also provides isolation from the outside environment. My past experiences with this type of headphones were not pleasant. The units produced poor low’s. As a result of trying to get decent bass response, I purchased multi-flange ear pieces. These ear pieces required an effort to push them in as far as possible to create a decent seal. I still didn’t get good bass. It is obvious to me now. You can’t get good bass from headphones that don’t provide good bass. My feeble attempts to improve these old headphones were in vain. I made the conclusion that I disliked all in-ear devices. They hurt my ears. As a result, I threw my old in-ear headphones in my desk drawer and reverted to over the ear headphones. That is, until I gave the Turbine in-ear headphones a try thanks to Monster providing them at no charge.
The Monster turbines produce a wide frequency response. I own two other well known in-ear brands but, they did not equal the sound experience I have found with the Monster Pro’s. Bass is definitely present for those who love strong bass. Mid-range frequencies are somewhat warm and creates a small club atmosphere: Obviously, this characteristic makes for great jazz and acoustic music. There is a smooth flow from excellent bass to warm mid-range to sparkling highs. These headphones remind me of high end magnetic planar speakers. Highs seem to float and sparkle. To get that kind of sound for less than 1/10ththe cost of planar or electrostatic speakers is a real bargain.
My music interests span from jazz to classical music. Having played the piano for many years, I feel that I have a good sense of what a piano should sound like. I picked listening to Clementi Sonatas and relished at the ‘attack’ and ‘decay’ of the piano keys. Most pianists would agree with me that piano music is not easy to reproduce. The Turbines were fantastic at recreating the sound I have personally experienced during piano sessions. They have my highest score on this genre of music.
Gustav Mahler on the other hand paints complex orchestration stretching any product to faithfully reproduce the sound of a large orchestra. The bass and the highs did well in reproducing the sound of a large orchestra: However, warm mids characteristic, took the edge off of a wide soundstage. I definitely could tell that the sound was not equivalent to sitting in the Woodruff Center listening to the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra.
The Turbines warmness took away my highest scores for large orchestral works however, they were superior when called on to reproduce smaller soundstage such as found in Baroque music. The slightly warm mids provide the soundstage texture propagating the illusion that you can reach out and touch the performers. I listened to five Yo Yo Ma recordings, loving the acoustic cello interpretation that only a master like Yo Yo Ma can create. Likewise, listening to jazz trio recordings brought the feeling like you could just reach out and touch the musicians. The Monster Turbine Pro Gold’s make listening to Wynton Marsailes an exhilarating experience. Any acoustic instrument shines with these headphones. Close your eyes and listen to Miles Davis, ‘Kind of Blue’ and you are instantly transported to a jazz club.
If you are buying these for a gift, you will be pleasantly surprised that the packaging is impeccable. As I opened the package, I was blown away with how nice they packaged the unit. Even my wife got excited as we looked at the pouches, the ear tips, holders etc. Monster thought of everything and the quality of the unit is obvious from the very beginning of opening the package. Sure, the sound is what is important but, when you purchase a crème de la crème you expect attention to detail extending down to the packaging itself. These headphones have some weight to them. They are not the cheap plastic units; neither is the cord a thin tangled mess. The headphones fit well in the ear and the cord is easy to roll up and does not produce microphonics when rubbing your shirt.
Monster has manufactured a solid built product. These headphones will take the jars and bumps and continue to give you great sound. Their ‘no questions asked’ replacement guarantee is the best in the market. You cannot get stuck owning a defective product. Monster guarantees it.
Monster Turbine Gold Pros are now my go-to headphones for jazz, Baroque, and acoustic detail. You too will find these headphones to be worth the price-point once you audition them. Monster has created a great headphone for the audiophile.