Do you have someone on your holiday shopping list who’s hoping for a pair of trendy, pop-friendly headphones? I’ve been trying out a pair of N-Tune headphones from Monster that fit that ticket. In looks and sound, they make for a more affordable alternative to Beats Solo. Or, you could skip the checkout altogether and score a free pair of Monster N-Tune headphones by entering our giveaway.
I mention the Beats Solo because those are probably the most popular example of headphones in this class.
Like the Beats, N-Tunes are an on-ear style, in brightly colored plastic (seriously, I counted at least 20 color options on Amazon, including matte versions). Sound quality is good, but it’s tuned for pop sensibilities. If you’re looking for a flat, studio-style response, these aren’t the headphones for you. But for a sound that’s bright, with plenty of bass emphasis–“Pure Monster Sound”–the N-Tunes do a good job. Again, if you listened to music on a pair of Beats Solos, you have the basic idea of what to expect.
Monster says the plastic frame is nigh indestructible. I didn’t go so far as trying to twist it, but they seem solid enough. The one downside of the shiny plastic on is its ability to attract fingerprints (at least on the Midnight Black versions I had). Everything is quite light and the ear cups are padded, but the headband is a little low on cushioning and adjustability is limited to sliding the cups up and down; I found the headphones became a little uncomfortable to wear after an hour or so. Those with smaller heads may not have the same issue…
The plus side of that snug fit is passive noise isolation that worked quite well. Even without music playing, the seal was snug enough that any background noise was seriously muffled.
A tangle-free cable with inline audio and smartphone controls is included. It’s removable and plugs into a jack on either ear cup. Those of you with kids who are tough on headphones and prone to breaking a permanent cable (like my daughter) will appreciate that feature–a standard audio cable is a lot cheaper to replace than a set of headphones that have had the wire physically yanked out of its socket. Even better, through a MusicShare feature, whichever input jack is free can be used as a pass through to plug in a second set of headphones or ear buds so two people can listen to the same audio source.
A cloth carrying bag is also included, but the N-Tunes don’t fold for carrying like some headphones do.
Perhaps the best part of the N-Tunes equation (especially for gift-givers) is the price. The $129 MSRP is a serious deal compared to a pair of Beats, but you can pick them up for $99.95 direct from Monster. At time of writing, the Midnight Black I had for the review were available for $76.99 on Amazon, and some of the colors were priced even lower. So they’re a really good value that makes it even tougher to justify dropping $200 or more on the competition.
I mentioned a giveaway and it’s true. Monster has offered up a free pair of N-Tune headphones to be shipped to the winner. Simply fill out the form below to enter. US addresses only, please.
Disclosure: Monster inc., provided N-Tunes headphones for review purposes and for the giveaway.
THE GIVEAWAY HAS CLOSED.