So Monster are still making audio products! I’ve not heard or seen them for a good while now so it’s nice to see they’re still pumping out products. And today I’ve managed to get my hands on a set of their new DNA Go earbuds. And spoiler alert… they’re not bad.
My first impression of their packaging is superb. The main box is sleeved, while the different sections are compartmented with doors, revealing the headphones themselves and their accessories. In the box, you can find headphones, instructions, a USB Type-C cable and some spare earbuds of varying sizes and colours though why do you get six sets of grey and six sets of black ear tips I’m not quite sure. Once the ear tips are in your ears, you’re not exactly seeing them.
Taking a look at the headphones themselves, they come in a nice small triangle charging case that’s small enough to fit in a pocket to carry around with. The door of the has a nice solid spring-loaded action which feels tough and it has magnets for when it’s closed. The headphones also stay in place with magnets for a secure fit. It has a max battery life of around 24 hours while the headphones last for around seven hours of listening time which I must say is pretty decent. It also features Qi-charging so if you have some form of wireless charging pad in your home or office, you can opt to charge your headphones this way too.
The headphones themselves are shaped to match the triangle design of the case too which is a nice touch, though finding a snug fit in my ear proved a little problematic. This is where the 12 earbuds came in, and I had to go through a few of them to get it right before I felt a comfortable seal. I ran them with black eartips to keep the colour scheme consistent on each earbud, because you know, I’m a little fussy like that. They have an unusually large stem on the bottom which is a design I’m not too keen on, but makes them very easy to place in your ears.
One feature that stood out to me though were the sensors on each earbud that are there to detect when the earbuds are in your ears. If you take one out if someone is trying to grab your attention, your music will pause. It’s a nice feature and one that’s welcome on a set of earbuds. Though it’s quite easy to trick. Put the earbuds down on the table facing down, and it’ll detect the table and think it’s the side of your head.
The headphones are IPX5 water resistant so you can’t go swimming with them, but sweat from a workout or a shower from nature won’t ruin the earbuds. Overall they feel very substantial and has a very nice build quality, and to be honest are a bit refreshing from the usual rounded shape you see from earbuds these days.
They advertise as having ‘Ambient Noise Surpression’ which I felt didn’t really do much, and it didn’t feel anywhere close to the noise cancellation you can expect from earbuds these days. It’s feels pretty much marketing speak for “the earbuds will create a seal in your ear lobe so outdoor sounds can’t get in”.
Sound quality though, left me a bit of a sour taste in my mouth. I wasn’t keen, and the presence of bass feels a little bit overwhelming at times. They’re a decent set of earbuds if you’re into your dubstep, EDM or House or anything that relies on a good solid beat. But throw some rock or pop music at them, and you’re in for a bit of an earsore. They definitely have an audience in mind with these headphones that’s for sure. Saying that, anything vocal-led is a pretty decent as there are some nice crispy highs. Some Funeral For A Friend was decent, but throw some breakdowns from Captain Chunk for example at them and the music begins to feel a little cluttered. They’re so far from the worst sounding earbuds, and as I said if you’re into your electronic music and maybe some hip-hop, they’re great. But if you’re like me and rock, metal or anything in between is more your cup of tea, then there are certainly better options out there.
The earbuds have two buttons, one on each, and the settings here are pretty simple. A single tap on either will play and pause your music. Two taps will skip the track either way and three taps will activate your phone’s assistant, being Google or Siri. Very simple to use and very easy to tap. Not much pressure is needed to perform an action I like as no pressure is added to the side of your head.
There is a Monster app on the Google Play store that I downloaded, but its description was in a foreign language, not sure if Chinese or Japanese or what, but I downloaded it and it wanted me to make an account. If this is the app for the Monster DNA Go headphones to access more settings, I don’t want it. I didn’t want to give them all of my details just to access some hidden settings. It didn’t affect the overall use of the headphones, and I can’t comment on whether this was the right app either. But I felt it was worth mentioning in this review.
The microphone quality for taking calls isn’t bad. It isn’t what you would call great, and does produce a somewhat tinny sound for your voice, or that’s what I found anyway, but it’s okay if you’re out and about and wanting to take some calls on the go. After all, you can’t really expect much from earbud microphones really. It uses Monster’s clear voice technology which aids in echo suppression and is designed to make yourself sound clearer, so this is where the tinny audio comes from.
The Monster DNA Go are a decent set of earbuds which offer a nice battery life, and a decent sound depending on what you’re going to be listening to. Bass heads go mental. For the price point these are sitting at, they shouldn’t be missed. I like the fact there are no touch controls though their overall design I like a bit, but I must say I am more of a fan of the roundedness of pretty much everything else out there. They do stand out though, and I for one was intrigued when I first saw them. For more info, head over to the Monster website and they also come in white if that’s more your thing.