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Headphones Highlight Monster Meet At CES

#CES Las Vegas –
Headphones in many forms made appearances at Monster’s International CES press
conference, held here Monday.

The company also
introduced its ClarityHD Micro speaker/speakerphone, Streamcast audio
transmitting system, and a power-monitoring app.

Partnerships have
been proven to be a successful formula in the past for Monster, as have
celebrity-themed headphones, and Noel Lee, head monster, announced that the
company is teaming with Livestrong, Diesel, and Earth, Wind and Fire, as well
as  J.Y. Park of JYP Entertainment. They
are also launching a line of headphones that feature swappable headbands.

The Livestrong
models will be part of Monster’s iSport line. The bright yellow in-ear
headphones, which are washable and feature the Monster’s ControlTalk in-line
mic technology, will be available in February for $179.

Diesel and
Monster’s headphones, the Vektr line, are meant to combine fashion and music,
Lee said. Stefano Rosso, Diesel’s corporate development director, added, “If
eyes could hear, these speakers are what music would look like.”

On-ear and in-ear
versions will be available for $249 and $149, respectively, and will have the
Diesel logo.

Next up in
Monster’s musician-themed headphones are Earth, Wind & Fire, who performed
at Monster’s Retailer Awards concert at the 2011 CES. The Gratitude gold in-ear
headphones will retail for $229.

Calling them “a
diamond ring for you head,” the Diamond Tears – Edge headphones were developed
with J.Y. Park of JYP Entertainment, one of Asia’s most prominent music
producers, according to Monster. These headphones will retail for $279.

Finally, for
headphones, the company’s fashion-focused Inspiration line (both over-ear and
on-ear versions available) features a variety of decorative headbands that can
be changed.

The over-ear line
is geared toward trendy business travelers, Lee said, with three finishes
offered: titanium, white and silver (limited distribution) for $279. An on-ear
version, Inspiration Lite, will be offered in white for $229. During the press
conference, a number of models paraded down the aisle, showing off headbands
with leopard prints, feathers and metal studs, although Lee said that they’re
“not going to SKU all of these.” Headbands will retail for $29.95.    

The ClarityHD
Micro portable Bluetooth speaker/speakerphone includes a variety of
voice-prompt “personalities,” as well as the ability to swap out the grille for
a colored or patterned one. Features include 3.5mm aux jack, a five-hour
battery life on lithium-ion batteries, and an omnidirectional microphone. It
will ship in March for $219.  

Monster also
showed off its StreamCast HD transmitter and receiver kit ($189) and a
power-monitoring app in its Green Power line. The StreamCast HD kit lets users send
four separate channels to up to 12 zones.