Razer Pro Solutions: Pro Tones m100

I have to admit; I’m rarely a fan of headphones, especially the in ear ones due to bad past experience.

My typical encounters with earphones are ones that constantly fall out unless my head is perfectly positioned and balanced.

However, I’ve been using the Pro Tone M100 earphones from Razer Pro, for a few weeks now and it’s definitely proven its worth.

So when we buy earphones, what do we look for? More importantly, what do I look for?

If I had to give a spec for a manufacturer to make me the best headphones, it would include the following:

Secure and comfortable fit

Natural, crystal clear audio reproduction

Distortion-free, non-tinny sound

So does the m100 meet these stringent requirements?

The design of these earphones follows the same blueprint as those that other manufacturers have used for these in-earphones. They have these rubber bits that attach to the end which squeeze in when you push them in to your ears then bounce back out again when they’re in your ear. This prevents them from dropping out easily as well as isolating as much external noise as possible.

Putting aside all the health risks and potential hazards you could come across with earphones that are capable of doing the above, these abilities make the m100 excellent for general listening when you’re active, if they can stay in whilst your running then they’ll certainly stay in when I’m dashing to my next lecture. That’s great news for me because this would be the first set of earphones I’ve ever used that don’t fall out.

As for sound isolation, they work very well, if not too well. I’m listening to the great Eyes Open album from Snow Patrol whilst typing this review and usually I would be able to hear myself typing, except I can’t this time! The m100 is excellent for blocking out any environmental noises that surround you. One thing that I do find annoying is that if you cough, talk, or make any noise then it seems to travel through to the earphones as well, likewise if you even slightly tap or touch the cable. Now this might be down to Razer Pro going a bit over the top with the material they used. It does have this rubbery and ultra lightweight feel to it.

Included in the package you get a travel pouch that you can keep the different sized ear buds in as well as the travel adaptor. The ear buds are removable and come with three sizes to fit all ears. Simply pull them off and put on the set that feels most comfortable for you. The travel adaptor has the two prongs that most commercial aircraft have so you can use these as earplugs since they isolate sound as well as for the in-flight entertainment.
So what about sound quality?

I was in two minds about the sound quality at first. On first listen using these headphones, something doesn’t feel or sound quite right. Then you realise it’s the amount of bass that you get through these earphones. It takes some getting used to but once you do, it feels natural, clear and full of rich bass. If I had to mark them down for anything, I’d probably say the bass is a touch too much, but for bass lovers, this is going to be perfect!

In terms of its sound reproduction, I could hear backing tracks, background noises in the track very clearly. In fact, I could hear sounds that I didn’t know existed in the track when listening to the same track using my speakers.

Sound quality would score a 7 out of 10, it loses points because the sound can be affected ever so easily when the headphone cable comes in to contact with anything or knocks against anything.

If we talked purely about the sound quality itself, then expect rich deep bass output and the ability to use these headphones at high volume without any distortion. It’s quite possible to listen to any type of music with these headphones, because the frequency response and decibel ohms that these headphones can reach are almost deafening. These headphones hold more than enough output than you’ll ever use or need for that matter.

If you travel a lot then the Pro Tones M100 from Razer Pro Solutions is an ideal two-in-one. If not, then they’ll still act as a nice companion to your iPod. It’s quite clear that the people at Razer Pro Solutions have put a lot of effort in ensuring that audio quality, ergonomics and package are nothing short of perfect. Despite the problem with the audio cable, the m100 from Razer Pro Solutions gets rewarded with the TechCast Recommended award.

2006-10-02 Onwah Tsang

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