Tumi Headphones by Monster – Review

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IMG_2704Listening to frequency tests and bass shakers left something to be desired. It was time to listen to an audio track.  I listened to a variety of music styles ranging from classical to heavy rock and found that the headphones performed impressively well.  The sound produced was full and rich, close and uninhibited.   When I switched back to other headphones they seemed oddly distant if not outright lacking.

I utilized a four-hour ride from New York to Boston to test out the Tumi headphones in a high noise area. I was specifically interested in experimenting with the acclaimed active noise-canceling feature.  While en route, I discovered two things: first, the noise-canceling worked well but not great, and second, the headphones became somewhat uncomfortable after more than an hour and a half of listening.  When I turned on noise canceling via the conveniently located switch behind the right ear cup, I felt as though the audio got louder and I had entered into a bubble of music. That isn’t to say that I couldn’t hear what was going on outside of my bubble, I could, but it was dulled to a point that I could easily pay it no heed.

My biggest gripe with the Tumi headphones is comfort, or lack thereof. After listening to a couple of albums, my ears began to ache. The headphone cups didn’t enclose the entire ear, meaning the bottom lobe got pinched ever so lightly.  This isn’t bothersome for typical listening, but after two albums or a movie, my ears needed relief.  The cups also aren’t quite deep enough either; the interior red felt pushes against the outer lobe of each ear, causing a similar aching discomfort. It’s worth noting, however, that for headphones to completely envelope an ear without providing any pressure or resistance they would need to be quite large, making them heavier and less portable.


The Tumi headphones by Monster offer a stylish way to enjoy your audio, but users may find the headphones become comfortable after prolonged use. Business travelers who find themselves flying frequently should invest in a pair of noise-canceling headphones to cope with the excessive noise in their travels.  The headphones have a manufacturer’s suggested retail price (MSRP) of $395, although this price tag seems high in comparison to other headphones on the market with similar capabilities.

(Photo: Accura Media Group)

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