Thinksound make great eco-friendly headphones, and I tried and loved the ts01+mic headphones earlier this year and loved them. Well they’re back with the ms01 – in-ear studio monitor headphones. I adored the Musical Fidelity EB-50 in-ear monitors I played with last year so was excited to see what happened when two concepts I enjoyed hooked up and had a baby.
The first thing I noticed was how light the ms01 were. The cabling is much thinner than the ts01s. I’m guessing this is partially due to the lack of inline controls – which makes sense for a pair of in-ear monitors. What makes less sense is the bundled Active Lifestyle Ear Hooks mounts so you can use them in the gym – or anywhere where one might engage in vigorous physical activity. If I was going to use the ms01s whist jogging – I’d want inline controls and perhaps even a mic. It’s a small quibble but it struck me as odd. Then again it was handy listening to mixes whilst on the run.
The ms01s are beautifully designed and have chocolate covered hand-crafted wood housings and gunmetal finished aluminium baffles. No-one who saw them on my desk was able to resist passing comment. The thin cables were light and unobtrusive, but I did worry a little about damaging them – if you’re clumsy take a little extra caution when using these – even though they are Kevlar-reinforced and tangle-resistant.
Thinksound are keen to emphasise their eco-credentials and rightly so. It’s certainly more effective than emphasising how much money you paid a rapper to say he likes you. The packaging is small and all recycled components. And there’s a cotton carrying case to cart everything along in as well.
Monitors are designed to present sound “as is” rather than pumping up the bass so they are excellent for music recording and production. These won’t replace studio grade equipment but they do sound excellent and I was perfectly happy mixing a couple of audio tracks with the ms01s. They have passive noise cancelling, which helps with focus. It’s obviously not as good as active noise cancelling but it’s certainly better than nothing. They are also fine for listening to regular music – I worked my way though two Matt & Kim albums and caught lots of lofi charming musical nuance that a poorer pair of earphones might have missed.
The thinksound ms01s are out now for £115