The most popular noise-canceling headphones that I’ve used recently all have a very minimalistic look and style–which personally I like a lot. But, I was just sent a pair of noise-canceling headphones that, well, aren’t that.
These are the new Marshall Monitor II headphones and they are pretty identifiably Marshall.
Since I have them though, I figured I’d try and do a complete walkthrough on them for you guys.
If you aren’t familiar a complete walkthrough on my channel is where I try to go through every feature I can on a new device so that you guys are better informed should you be looking to buy one.
With that said, there is a lot to go through so let’s get started with the hardware.
The headband and ear cushions are covered in a vegan/synthetic leather while the ear caps, the hard outer part are made out of ABS and the frame itself is made out of aluminum.
We have a decent amount of padding at the top which helps it sit on your head a little more comfortably and we have very plush earcups to help with that, as well.
On the right earcup, we have our M button on the back. You can use this to toggle between three equalizer presets.
You can use the Marshall Bluetooth app to set these. You have the first one which is the one tuned by Marshall themselves for their own sound. Then there are two customizable presets that you can either choose from genre-specific presets that they preloaded or select custom and adjust the frequencies yourself. I personally don’t like the Marshall one myself so I just changed it to a different preset and that made it sound better to me.
Each preset is identified by a different guitar sound, single for the Marshall one, double for your second preset and triple for the third.
You can also change this in the app to invoke Google Assistant or your native voice assistant (think Bixby on Samsung or Siri on iPhone, for example).
Also on this right cup is the pretty clever concept of this joystick instead of buttons. Using it you can control volume by pushing it up or down, next or previous track by pushing left and right and pause and play by pushing it in. It’s intuitive and saves from adding extra buttons, too.
And on the left, we have our ANC button which does something similar to the M button but for the level of active noise-canceling.
In the app, you can select the amount of ANC for the ON settings (in intervals of 10%) then select the same for the Monitoring settings. Then you tap this button to switch between the two.
The idea is that you can also use that button to get to Monitoring Mode and it’ll pause the music and set the sound transparency to what you selected so you’re able to hear people around you without having to take off the headphones.
Also, on the left earcup, we have a 3.5mm audio jack that you can use with the included 3.5mm audio cable to plug in the headphones instead of using them via Bluetooth. This is handy for if you want to listen to the plane’s in-flight entertainment system. (Although I started using this little guy that Qualcomm sent me to convert the in-flight into Bluetooth, I’ll link it below if you guys are interested).
Next to that, we have our USB-C port (so happy it’s USB-C by the way and not MicroUSB, that port needs to die, just saying). According to Marshall, the battery will last up to 30 hours with ANC on and up to 45 with it off.
There is also fast charging so you can plug it in for 15 mins to get 5 hours of playback, which is cool.
They fold up way smaller than you’d think by looking at them frankly and come with a carrying pouch that isn’t hard like Sony’s X1000M3’s I did a video on a while back that I’ll link to below. While the hard case seems like it would protect the headphones better, I actually prefer this soft bag as I feel like it protects them enough but it means it fits a lot better in my bag, too.
OK, so how do they sound.
Well, considering I figured a lot of people love their ANC headphones for long flights, I guess let’s test it, on a plane.
Check the video above for how that went 🙂
The Marshall Monitor II are available now and cost $319.99, just undercutting the Sony’s by a bit ($349.99). Honestly, they’re great. I’d say the noise-canceling maybe isn’t quite as good as the Sony’s but it’s pretty close, but at least they’re a little cheaper and honestly, they give you a solid choice of ANC headphones but with a different look to choose from.