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Well, I'm probably going to be the odd man out but I ordered a pair at the previous drop and for the money, they're quite good but they certainly aren't the best earbuds I've heard. While they're fairly balanced, they sound harsh and unrefined. Calling these audiophile buds is a real stretch as they would be fit for use in the gym or when sound quality is not important.
But let's be real, I know these aren't built to be true audiophile buds and you do get what you pay for. But to call these the best earbuds is a little short-sighted and overly optimistic. My Chinese-made TY Hi-Z HP-150 earbuds are way more refined and oozes audiophile quality sound for just over $20.00. However, I can imagine if a few more bucks were spent on making the Monks true audiophile buds, you would certainly have something fantastic.
i am sure there are still many other value for money gears somewhere waiting to be discovered....truth is monk plus has been recognised, not by one, two or three, but many hifiers, to be the best in its class....so until the day when the one u mentioned is widely accepted n recognised, my money, together with those i have been collecting from fellow hongkongers, will be firmly put on Monk Plus....Finally, allow me to say a BiG THANK to Lee for offering us such wonderful product n also to Massdrop for picking the right color n organising the drop.b
I have no doubt that the Monks are the best in their class. I have two pair of them! But the operative phrase is "in their class". The Monks are in a class where earbuds are very cheap and not very good. And the Monks could very well be the best in that class. However, I have been researching a lot of Chinese audio products (earbuds) and for slightly more money, you can get earbuds that have way better drivers and better tuning. My aforementioned TY Hi-Z's for example, rival my Grado SR325is for overall clarity. That's what impresses me - cheap buds that can virtually complete with well-known pricey cans.
Now, having said that, I'm sure Lee didn't build the Monks to compete with cans costing hundreds of dollars. But I'm also not going to say that these are the best earbuds ever that so many people believe. There's brilliant for what they cost but when compared to similar buds for a little more money, they are not as refined and tend to sound like it's a little unclear in the midrange. The bass is decent and treble has some good sparkle to it without sounding tinny but overall, the Monk's aren't as clean and detailed. They're good for general purpose use but for serious listening, there are better choices for only a little more money.
I totally agree - they are best in its class when compared to earbuds or IEM of the low-mid price range. Often they are bloated and muddy. The Monk+ are really a breath of fresh air with a clarity that is welcome. But how are folks comparing these with headphones way above it's price point is absurd. These are great for knocking around with or if you're loathe to bring your TOTL headphones/IEMs out. They're just so convenient and versatile.
By the way, I am intrigued with the Hi Zs for quite a while. Any thoughts on how the different models compare?
Well I would have to disagree strongly with you there. I have tried some other earbuds, the shozy cygnus most recently which got a lot of hype and to my ears the monk plus is still better. The shozy one costs close to 80 dollars, and they haven't had any ear time in the last few weeks :)
I have also owned everything from budget KZ iems to all the way TOTL iems and I have to say Monk Plus hangs out with the best of them in <100 dollar category easily. I get that you are trying to peddle the latest fad, but suffice to say the monk plus is getting love from tons of guys who regularly drop thousands on gear without blinking and they are buying tons of them. Yet not one person is buying the one you are trying to push. So I really doubt that your so called HiZ HP150 "oozes audiophile quality sound at $20" and that they compare to grado SR325s -_-
yeah no thanks, I am gonna go with the experienced folks like Clieos, Brooko, Hisoundfi who certainly know their stuff. Nice try with trying to push the TY tho, try harder next time :)
I only have the 150 ohm model (hp150) because I wanted to drive them with my headphone amp but yet be able to use them with all my mobile gear as well. But there's something about driving high impedance earbuds with decent amps that make them come alive. I almost got the 320 ohm model but I knew my devices wouldn't drive them properly.
Yup, thats why the Zen 1 and Zen 2 are virtually unrivalled, they are both quite high impedance (300 ohms I think) and amping them brings out the best in them. I use the Zen 2 with the FiiO X7 and RunABOUT 2.0, and its basically an open back headphone set up lol. VERY much like the much lauded HD600 imo.
IMO its good enough to be end game for most people :) You should try it one day, you would be surprised just how good they are!
I have to say that I won't give a sh*t on whether or not a pair of earbuds/cans are high impedance ones, bro. But a proper output voltage swing and a strong and stable current are required to drive both Zen 1.0 and Zen2.0. Fortunately, a $100 Runabout 1.0, driving the Zen 1.0 so well, is right of the best price-performance ratio. I find it perfectly matches k240 mkii with Cardas cable whenever listeningto male vocals. However, Lee says his RA 2.0 is even better. He's digging a bigger hole for audiophiles. What he wants to sell are amps instead of earbuds or cans. So, I'm going to nick your gadgets in a couple of weeks :)
I'm simply telling you what budget earbud I'm using for the moment and how I feel about them. And I'm certainly not pushing them on anyone. However, be careful of what you say unless you have proof. You say "yet not one person" is buying what I listen to. Really? And you doubt that my TY's are comparable to my Grados? Hmm. But yet you want me to believe that "tons" of guys are giving love to the Monks because they're buying "tons" of them.
I guess "tons" is the word of the week.
I suppose you can doubt what you want but what I said about the Grados are based on experience, not speculation. And I simply stated my opinion about the Monks which is also based on experience, not speculation. However, I'm almost positive that your refuting my Grados vs. TY comparison is purely speculative.
Also, keep in mind that buying "tons" of any audio gear doesn't mean that they're necessarily the best. Dr Dre sells more Beats headphones than any other brand so I guess they're the best, right? Hardly! But hey, I get it - you're exuberant about the Monks and that's cool. But don't disparage me and others simply because you don't agree with their opinion. I'm sure you can do that without resorting to fanboy reasoning.
Reading the discussion pages here, I figured that many regular headfiers joined the drop. Some even repeatedly (if it happened in China of the 60s, sure these ppl would have been charged for disturbing the market... :) ). There were also feedbacks from others who received their copies from previous drop. Apart from a handful who somehow were disappointed, the rest were all singing hallelujah. These are evidence showing how good the Monk Plus is. No question.
Earbud market is big, there is room for more than just one good product.. if the one you mentioned is as good as you claimed, sure it would shine and become as well known as Monk Plus. No worry and no need to push too hard, time will tell.
You don't have to buy the Monks, nor do you have to buy his points, and vice versa.
Whenever you have a pair of Monk/Monk plus on hand, you'll finally get what we're talking about.
You may find out most people who join this drop have already own at least one pair of Monk Plus.
Some have even joined the previous one, but have failed to own them because their friends BORROWED the earbuds on arrival.
As an audiophile, I don't tend to say one is BETTER than the other. But I would try to figure out which set of system perfectly matches the music I listen to. That's something kind of MATCHING, instead of being superior. Always on a tight budget, though.
All of this is so subjective. I prefer my little Monk Plus's to my er4p and Grado sr-60's by far. The ER4p's may have a bit more clarity. But, they are lifeless compared to the Monks. And the Grado's are sweet. But, the little Monk's keep me listening to the music. And that is what it's all about. I wish I would have found these awhile back and not wasted money on this stuff. I'm good for now. :)