Review

Review: Diesel VEKTR by Monster headphones


There are headphones and then there are headphones. The headphones we will be talking about today fall in to the category of being something you purchase as a luxury item and not a pair of headphones you grab from the gas station because you left your other pair at the gym.

Monster is moving on from the Beats line and is following up with the Diesel VEKTR headphones. It is clear from the purchase price (MSRP of $279.95) that Monster was targeting a premium audience as everything from the box to the case the headphones come in was meticulously designed to fit perfectly together to extort that up-scale agenda.

When reading through the marketing material, Monster likes to toss around words like High-Def, ultra performance; but at the end of the day, those are vague terms that you can’t accurately define in the marketplace, let alone a review.

When you open up the box, extend the panels and unzip the headphones, it becomes clear that the headphones were designed to make a fashion statement. With lines that are reminiscent of the F117 stealth fighter or even a Lamborghini Aventador, the headphones are certainly unique. Depending on your taste, you could see this as tacky or elegant, and admittedly it did take us a few minutes to warm up to the design, but overall, we quite like the look.

The headphones come in a slightly rigid case that will protect your headphones from scratches when tossed in a bag. The cord has a built in microphone and single button remote, which allows you to accept calls and control your music (more on this below).

The sharp angles and dark coloring go well together to create a look that certainly separates itself from others on the market. The cord is triangular in shape which Monster claims will keep it from tangling. While we have not coiled it up and shoved it in our pockets on a daily basis, the shape is certainly different and so far has held true to its “tangle-free” claims.

The build of the headphones falls in line with the price point: they are deceptively light in your hands but do have a fair amount of plastic to them, although that plastic does not feel particularly cheap. The ear pads are soft on your head but it is noticeable that the ear pads do not breathe very well as after extended use your ears do become quite hot.

When you are wearing the headphones, they are comfortable and support a wide range of cranial sizes with the expandable headband; they do not pinch your head like some cheaper headphones will, but the plastic casing does attract fingerprints.

The cord included with the headphones certainly has a unique feel to it. The triangle shape and end connectors are oversized but make it easy to connect and disconnect them from your favorite MP3 player or phone. There is also an inline microphone with a simple one-button operation that allows you to pause/play music, but there are no volume controls - something we would like to see at this price point.

No matter what type of headphones you purchase, the all-important question is how is the sound quality?

The headphones are certainly good with a robust all-around approach to the sound but they do not excel at either the highs or the lows. When you wait for Skrillex to make a drop or expect to hear Tchaikovsky master the symphonies of the violins and hit the upper echelons of the spectrum, the headphones leave a bit of room for improvement. Don’t get me wrong, the sound is clear and fulfilling, but they could certainly be a bit better on the ends of the spectrum.

So what does it come down to? This is a prestige headset designed to be noticed for its prestige and branding, and the audio quality is slightly better than average for the price range. Is it a good buy? At $279.95 MSRP you could certainly do worse and for this new entrant, it’s not a bad price but audiophiles may need to look elsewhere.

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23 Comments

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More Monster Hype Madness - overpriced, subpar performance, and questionable design. And hasn't the F117 stealth look been overused/abused enough? Monster's designers must be on a tight budget.

And good question by Alladaskill17, who won the contest?

Why would any sane person buy Monster anything? I guess the same people who line up outside a "fruit store", perhaps.

Not my cup of tea. So so performance and priced for yupsters who don't know any better, plus a design that appeals mostly to Japanese schoolgirls.

Ugh, more hipster headphones. It's all about design and hype dictated by price these days. It should be quality that dictates price. Oh well, my wallet's safe for sure.

Thanks for the review. I just find them hideous and overpriced. I am in the market for headphones too.
I would absolutely rather hang myself then ever consider purchasing those god awful beats. /rant

The Laughing Man said,
Thanks for the review. I just find them hideous and overpriced. I am in the market for headphones too.
I would absolutely rather hang myself then ever consider purchasing those god awful beats. /rant

I dont think Id walk around in public with them

I dont know why some people here like to bash Monster. I used to have a couple of Sennheiser headphones and they sounded nice, but not great while my current Dr Dre Beats are the best headphones I've ever had.

How dare you mention Skrillex and Tchaikovsky in the same sentence Such blasphemy!

Also atleast show us a picture of how you look wearing them since we all know Monster headphones are more of a fashion accessory than for sound quality.

"This is a prestige headset designed to be noticed for its prestige and branding, and the audio quality is slightly better than average for the price range."

ie FAIL

If your going to spend $300 on headphones then get some from a company that knows what they are doing like Sennheiser or Beyerdynamic. You will spend less and get better quality.

Sennheiser also makes some overpriced headphones and they don't sound that good. I bought some senhheiser travel headsets the other day and they cost nearly $500 but sound like crap. There was no bass and the sound was really weak. Dr. Dre headphone sounded much much better but they are just too ugly for me.

Deihmos said,
Sennheiser also makes some overpriced headphones and they don't sound that good. I bought some senhheiser travel headsets the other day and they cost nearly $500 but sound like crap. There was no bass and the sound was really weak. Dr. Dre headphone sounded much much better but they are just too ugly for me.

Noise canceling? Travel headphone doesn't sound like something that would have a ton of bass.

The Dre headphones are a set of sub $99 with the bass boosted and b sticker on the sides.

Cyborg_X said,

Noise canceling? Travel headphone doesn't sound like something that would have a ton of bass.

The Dre headphones are a set of sub $99 with the bass boosted and b sticker on the sides.

My Beats by Dre Studios bass worthy. And if the bass goes ways to far, the Beats pretty much protect themselves.

Cyborg_X said,
If your going to spend $300 on headphones then get some from a company that knows what they are doing like Sennheiser or Beyerdynamic. You will spend less and get better quality.

You'll have to agree that Monster headphones and the ones from Sennheiser or Beyer you're listing look completely different. The Sennheisers look, in my opinion, more professional and more indoor-kind-of-headphones, while the Monster headphones look more like fashion-items.

Aside from that, I have to say my Beats Pro sound better than any other pair of headphones I've ever tried.

Come on Neowin - if you are going to review headphones, put in more than 3 sentences (only 86 out of 686 words) for sound quality! I know design, build quality, are important, but sound quality is extremely important!

What were you looking for exactly, I can't place them on your head or show you how they sound...they were robust in the middle, weak on the highs and lows.

bdsams said,
What were you looking for exactly, I can't place them on your head or show you how they sound...they were robust in the middle, weak on the highs and lows.

I have my Beats by Dre Studios, and I still believe they're the best on the lineup. I don't think the VEKTR's all that just because it looks like a roughed up black diamond.

bdsams said,
What were you looking for exactly, I can't place them on your head or show you how they sound...they were robust in the middle, weak on the highs and lows.

Well, objective analysis would be interesting, instead of just subjective one. (maybe add some SNR x frequency graphs in there.