Recently I reviewed Monster’s Turbine In-Ear Speaker Monster Turbine High Performance Ear Buds and my experience with that product made me curious about their professional line of similarly designed in-ear speakers. Enter the Monster Turbine Pro Copper, a more refined and ruggedly built version of the Turbines. The Pro Coppers target audience is not your casual mp3 listener, these are designed for picky audiophiles and studio professionals. Monster refers to them as studio quality monitors – in-ear speakers – that deliver nothing but accuracy, transparency, and detail. Find out if they deliver on their claims in my review.
- Design: Full-Range In-Ear Speakers
- Cable: 4.5 Feet; Tangle-resistant
- MSRP: $399.95 USA
Design and Setup
The first thing you will notice with these in-ear speakers would be their shiny copper finish. They have a very nice luster to them. The Pro Coppers differ from then Turbines in a couple of areas.
First, the miniplug has a right angle to it, which is handy when using with an mp3 player or cell phone as the angle helps to keep the cable out of the way. Second, the cable itself is thicker and more sturdy and the connections are better reinforced. I would say they are some of the more durable earbuds I have used, but even if you were to have a problem, Monster will take care of you with as the Pro Coppers come with a lifetime warranty. The Pro warranty covers all manufacturers defects as well as a onetime full replacement even if you break them! If only all products I purchased had that.
The Pro Coppers also come with a variety of sizes and types of their SuperTips ear plugs. Most in-ear speakers have detachable foam or rubber tips that create the seal inside your ear canal. Without a proper seal, you will lose much of the low end frequencies and the sound might be a bit grating for your ears. The Monster SuperTips come in both a foam material that compresses to fit easily inside your ear canal, then expands to create a nice seal. They also come in a gel material, which is squishy and soft, but does not compress. Each type comes in small, medium and large sizes. The gel tips were certainly comfortable, but I found I got a better seal with the foam style.
To evaluate the Pro Coppers, I used my iPhone, Nuforce Icon Mobile, and a Nuforce HDP headphone amp. In most cases, the digital audio is in the Apple Lossless format.
Overall, the Pro Coppers really stood out when using the Nuforce HDP. The sound was clearer, more open and the bass was stronger and more detailed. I also felt I could listen to them all day long with the HDP as they were not at all fatiguing. With the Nuforce Icon mobile headphone amp I would get a bit uncomfortable after about an hour of listening, although it is nice to have when traveling as it easily sounds better than my laptop headphone output. When I am on the go and want to keep things simple, just plugging directly into my iPhone was the way to go as they sounded great on it.
Lady Antebellum’s “Need You Now” sounded fantastic. Lyrics and all the individual instruments were all clear and identifiable. Bass drum beats had a nice pop to them, but nothing overwhelming. I have listened to Beats by Dr. Dre from Monster headphones and for me they were just a tad too bass heavy. I find the Pro Coppers to have a perfect balance.
I tested out some modern day pop with Katy Perry’s “Teenage Dream” and the beat had great energy and was not overly bright or compressed sounding. If I was working out, I’d have the volume cranked on the Pro Coppers!
On Sun Kil Moon’s “Alesund”, the acoustic guitars had wonderful presence on the Coppers. The pluck of the strings came through with more detail and space than the standard Turbines. Overall, there was more space and 3-dimensionality to the sound on the Coppers than the Turbines.
Kanye West – My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy – “Dark Fantasy” grooves with great energy and crisp clean sound. “All of the Lights” also sounds very well balanced on the Monster Pro Coppers. The bass is deep and loud, but not so over powering that it drowns out the music. All of Kanye’s layered tracks have a voice of their own where as on the standard Turbines they sound a tad more muddled.
Mary Shelly’s Frankenstein by Patrick Doyle – In the track “The Wedding Night”, lush strings envelope the stage with some beautiful music by Doyle. Naturally, due to their design, the AKG’s have a bit more openness and wispfulness (yes I made up that word) than the Pro Coppers. However, the Copper Pro’s sound amazingly open for an in-ear speaker. The low end cello’s and double bass have a wonderful unctuous body to them and didn’t feel fatiguing at all. There is quite a bit of atmosphere to the soundstage on this recording and the Pro Coppers capture it well.
My time spent with the Monster Turbine Copper Pro In-Ear speakers has been more than pleasant. These are easily the best in-ear speakers I have ever heard, as they should be, costing $399. Although I still prefer to do most of my critical listening on regular over-the-ear headphones, it just isn’t a good option for me at my office. Open air design headphones like the AKG701’s let out a lot of sound that fellow coworkers can get annoyed with. This is why I prefer an in-ear speaker when working. I can crank the music as loud as I want and not worry about annoying anyone and with the Pro Coppers I enjoy a stunning sonic presentation as well. Definitely give the Monster Pro Coppers a good look if you are in the market for a wonderfully balanced and detailed audiophile quality in-ear speaker.