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Monster has created headphones for almost every single type of consumer.  Whether its a DJ, businessman, audiophile, or just your average consumer they’ve got you covered.  The Monster Inspiration line was created primarily for the private time listeners.  The eye-pleasing Monster Inspirations are definitely pricey and are in the same conversation as the “Beats by Dre Studio” if we were to put it into perspective.  Its your typical lifestyle stylish headphones but are they worth the $300 to $350 price tag?  Lets find out.

Build Quality
Just on first glance you can tell that these are pretty sturdy.  You have your brushed aluminum headband holding the ear cups as well as a nice leather cushion to sit on top of your head while you enjoy your music.  Monster tried hard to blend the color in between the headband and ear cups but you can clearly tell that the ear cups are plastic.  There is no daisy chaining capability with these headphones probably because its noise canceling and it wouldn’t make sense to have it there.  The ear cups are squared but the comfortable leather is cut out in the shape of an oval to fit right around the ear.  On the right ear up you have your battery compartment to enable your noise canceling feature.  The biggest thing about these headphones is that they are customizable.  How you say?  Well you can interchange the top part of the headband.  Initially your headphones will come with 2 different headbands so you can choose your flavor, but you can order more off the Monster website.  Gives it that extra bit of appeal that I know a ton of people will enjoy.

2013-11-01 01.07.10Comfort
Comfort plays a huge role in the purchase of headphones.  If they are too tight, it can become extremely uncomfortable to wear after a short period of time.  If they aren’t tight enough, the seal won’t be great and the sound is just gonna be all over the place.  I can vouch for these when I say they have a right fit for my huge head.  These rest perfectly on my head and aren’t tight enough to give me a migraine but just enough to keep a decent seal to keep the sound in.  What I will say is that my ears don’t poke out very much and the cartilage of my ear still reaches the inside of the ear cups which becomes irritating after a couple of hours of listening to music.  This can be a gripe for people who’s ears poke out more and need the space so that the speakers sit just far enough from the ear.  Again these are the noise canceling pair not the noise isolating, you could have different results.

Sound
The Monster Inspirations have a very good sound signature.  It tends to be very bassy as with all Monster headphones but it has a lot more control than the old Beats Studios when it comes to the bass.  The mids are clearer than you would think but can be drowned out by the bass in genres like hip-hop or edm.  Highs really good and have good precision for the most part.  As mentioned, these are heavy on bass but I enjoy that aspect.  It gave me just enough of it that I could find my head bobbing to the song and not many headphones can give me that experience.  Though the bass can be a little loose and dark, its nothing that a little EQ magic can’t fix.

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As for the noise canceling, it is not what you would expect.  The ANC technology in these headphones are very lackluster and disappointing.  You can hear the hiss when your in between songs or when your music is off and it feels like its barely canceling out anything.  I can hear conversations and outside sounds which is frustrating because it defeats the purpose of having ANC.  That does change though when you have the music anywhere above 65%.  You’ll get a bit of subway noise which is pretty loud but crank up the music enough and it’ll block it out for the most part.

Conclusion
Are they worth the $300 price point?  Yes and no.  It depends on what you’re looking for.  Comfort and bass-heavy sound that can block out a great amount of noise along with options to have a pair of headphones that are more personal for you, then yea, these are for you.  Looking for ANC that is up to par with headphones like Bose QC15 and don’t press on your pointy ear cartilage that can hurt in a short period of time, then no.  The Monster Inspirations may have different results based on which one you buy but the ANC has quiet a bit of flaws.  It makes me wonder if I should’ve went with the Noise Isolating pair, hmm.  The Monster Inspirations with ANC are available now over at Monster retailing at $299.99 in White, Black and Silver.  I would tell you go to the nearest electronics store and try them on to see if they fit your head before you go and do so.

Pros

  • You can use the headphones with and without ANC
  • Comfortable to wear
  • Stylish and customizable

Cons

  • ANC is lackluster
  • Flabby bass at times
  • Noticeable plastic ear cups