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Monolith M300 In Ear Planar Earphones

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  1. Sythrix
    The stock cable is simply intolerable. It juts out while I'm walking and is thick and unwieldy. If you try to wrap it up, it resists and creates those infuriating small loops.

    Surprisingly the microphonics are the least annoying thing about it for me. I need to find another one ASAP if anyone has some recommendations for a normal (unbalanced) cable.
  2. watsaname
    Yeah they are not the most portable earphones stock, more transportable if anything. I think one of the YouTube reviewers was saying that it seemed like they recycled the cable from rev 1 m1060s.

    I was kind of looking at the me-elec HiFi cable. A lot of people were saying that it is pretty supple and high quality for it's price.
  3. dr.z
    Following this thread with interest as mine will likely arrive tomorrow. I wonder if the sound signature can be improved at the same time as the cable replacement. The absurd irony is of course at the low price a worthwhile cable upgrade (ALO, Toxic) will easily cost almost as much!! One option is Fiio, with both standard and balanced versions.

    In my case an additional wrinkle of needing a 3.5mm TRRS connector, for LH Labs' GO2.
  4. AndroidVageta
    I'm holding out for more pro reviews and more comparisons. I thought that at $150 these would be a shoe in...could get them right now...but I just don't really like what I'm hearing so far from others about the sound.
  5. harpo1
    I for one enjoy the sound. For those who have already received their M300's. Monoprice is aware of the ear hooks breaking and according to them there was a bad batch. They should be making an announcement about it next month and will be sending out replacements. Your other option is to RMA the M300's.
    dr.z and Fra D like this.
  6. Fra D
    The larger over-ear clips break as easy as dry spaghetti sticks, as carefully as I treated them 1 broke when taking the monitors off my ears. Can not find a right fit with the smaller rubber (?) in-ear clips.
    Sound is bleak, empty, flat, compared to my Oppo PM-3.
    If these are supposed to be on par with the Isine 10 or even 20, I feel sorry for those that spent that much on the Isines. The monitors do fit in the case, a little tight maybe, but I prefer that to having them float around in it.
    I am burning them in for 24 hours at pretty high volume now. Hope it improves the sound, as the balanced cable that should arrive tomorrow or Thursday.

    There are cheap cases on Alibaba, like for the Beoplay if you need something else.
  7. Sythrix
    Would you be able to link the exact cable you're talking about?

    You definitely have to get used to the sound signature. It's not like anything I've ever heard. Probably a product of being a new form factor for planars and us lacking any reference. I think you'll find the detail in them if you keep listening.
    Fra D likes this.
  8. Fra D
    You could be right about having to get used to them, May have sounded too negative after first impressions, they are just far from what I expected in comparison to the PM-3. The PM-3 blew me away from the first second I used it, these do not.
  9. Devodonaldson
    Heard the isine at Canjam. Not a real IEM fan,. Ut was pleasantly surprised. I do own a pair of KZ ZST that I use occasionally when I need to throw something on real quick for a trip around the grocery store. I prefer over ear cans though. With all that said, I did like the overall sound and bass presentation of the isine, but wasn't going to spend $300-$600 on in ear headphones. How are the mids and bass of the m300. My favorite cans are the Audioquest Nighthawk and Nightowl using the original hybrid pads, and the ABYSS PHi, so I indeed like darker cans. With good bass presence, but still very detailed.
  10. Sythrix
    I don't think you'll have any complaints with the sound then. These are certainly on the darker end of the spectrum, but I haven't found them lacking in detail. The bass seems phenomenal to me as compared to my other headphones, which are mostly over-ear. It hits that itch when you want some good thumping bass, though I wouldn't say the volume of bass is the same as some heavy cans. Still... it's accurate and tight, with enough thump to get you moving. Just have to make sure you get a good seal for the full effect.

    The mids are decent. There have been a couple of times they seem slightly elevated. I'm not the best person to ask about vocal reproduction because I don't listen to a ton of music with vocals. It sounds good to me and ultimately, life-like with a good recording.

    It's going to depend on your amp and your source of course. I can hear the difference switching between amps much easier with these than my over-ear headsets, but the strong points remain in its detailed, but overall dark, presentation.

    Soundstage seems decent for an IEM too. Things are cozy, but I feel like when the artist wanted to convey distance, it comes through well. Like the kids playing in the distance at the start of the song Flutes by Hot Chip. It manages to be dark without being claustrophobic and the semi-open design is apparent.

    However, I can't just throw these on. I have to sit and make sure they go in my ear and that the ear clips are in the right spot, etc. Apparently some people are having issues with some of the clips and other accessories. So YMMV but I just use the over-ear clips and have a vehement hate of the stock cable so far. Plan to replace that ASAP, if I can find one that I'm sure will work well.

    They're not perfect and I'm not writing a review (this is already long enough), but I think they're worth $150 no problem... if you can find a decently priced cable you can live with (which I'm not saying you have to hate the one that it comes with, I just do. Passionately.)

    EDIT: Somehow got the same sentence in there twice, probably when I was moving around my thoughts.
    Last edited: Oct 3, 2017
    trellus likes this.
  11. Devodonaldson
    THx for the details. Lol, regarding the cable hate. I guess I'm just easy on that front. Many people dedpise the new Audioquest cable for the Carbon headphones. I don't mind it at all and have made it work for me with little to no issue. So, I don't really foresee ant issue with the cable. For Soyrce, I run a Dragonfly Red to a JDS Labs C5 for modern music. Good soundstage, and the amp adds good low end emphasis, while sacrificing some of the DFR's detail in the treble. Use the DFR by itself for classical and horns for the extra detail in the instrumentation, while sacrificing some soundstage width.
  12. Magick Man
    Ordered these and looking forward to trying them out.
  13. Schwibbles
    I just received mine today. I wrote a short post on Reddit (in r/headphones) with my first impressions. Below is a copy of my post from there:

    First off, I apologize for the poor quality pictures.

    Disclaimer: I generally like a more neutral sound signature with a slight boost to the bass and a somewhat warm lower midrange. Given that preference, I will do my best to be objective in my listening and try to keep most of my own bias out of this write up (no promises). I purchased these with my own money from Monoprice for the purpose of this write up; I am in no way receiving anything from Monoprice for my opinions.

    First impressions are that these are fairly similar to the iSINE10 that I owned months ago. As I have not owned them since February, I cannot do a direct comparison. Rather, I will do my best to compare them from memory.

    Bass: Pretty fast, tight, and extends deep. Quantity is a little north of neutral.

    Midrange: Lower midrange is quite warm; a few dB over neutral. I personally quite like the warmth and detail here. Upper midrange goes downhill quickly for me; The upper midrange and lower treble are heavily scooped out and lacking clarity. Female vocals in particular sound veiled. I would consider it slightly worse than the iSINE10 which was also lacking in this area.

    Treble: Detail is very good for an IEM in this price range. However, the treble sounds heavily rolled off and somewhat distant. The good news here is that there is no chance of listening fatigue or sibilance.

    Soundstage/Imaging: Soundstage is among the widest I've heard from an IEM. This is probably helped by the fact that it is open-back. Imaging on the other hand is just average.

    Comfort: While the feel of the M300 is fairly similar to the iSINE, I find the M300 to be less comfortable. For reference, I didn't find the iSINE to be very comfortable to begin with. I usually use large tips for IEMs and even these small tips don't fit my ear very well; all the tips are quite large. I experimented with the different tips and ear hooks and nothing seemed to fit "just right". My ears are a little different from each other and I found the left earpiece to really hurt the antihelix of my left ear. So much so that I really don't want to wear them for more than a few minutes at a time.

    Cable/Ergonomics: The cable seems to be lifted directly from the first gen M1060. It is quite thick and a little on the heavy side for an IEM cable. It is also not very supple and likes to retain its shape from packaging. The earpieces themselves are also quite large (obviously) and slightly on the heavy side. However, the size and weight do not seem to be much of an issue for me as the over-ear ear hooks easily hold them in place; I do not feel like they would fall out.

    Conclusion/Other thoughts: The inner box was upside down when compared to the outer box (see picture). Not an issue, someone just put it together upside down. The magnet array in each earpiece is very strong; they love to stick to each other. IMO, these are not worth buying. There are better-sounding and (much) more comfortable options for the price. I will be returning my pair to Monoprice.
    Last edited: Oct 3, 2017
    trellus, Fra D and manukmanohar like this.
  14. Ynot1
    Only assumptions. If you can wear this cable up, do the microphonics go away. And did Audeze choose to use software to adjust sound signature, because mechanical tuning was not good investment? With that how does this respond to eq?
  15. SilverEars
    I wish somebody can measure the distortion level(all measurements really) so we can compare to iSines.

    Anybody is up to the task of measuring, we'd appreciate it, and we'd give you many likes.:smile_phones:
    Last edited: Oct 4, 2017
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