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In-ear monitors have come a long way; from something only million dollar high end tours could support, to a flexible way for up and coming artists hear themselves on any stage. Along the way though, an inexpensive, yet high-quality set seemed to be nearly impossible. Sennheiser’s now closed that gap with their IE40 set of In-Ear Monitors.
Out of the box, they appear to follow the form of traditional IEM’s, but with a twist. The earbuds themselves are NOT hardwired in like a set of earbuds, but feature a detachable cable. With a reinforced end at the ear connection, the cable feels super robust, and connects to the earpieces with a nice positive response. It’s a nice feature usually only found in more expensive IEM’s. A selection of foam and rubber ear pieces are included that easily attach and fit just about any seized ear.▼ Article continues below ▼
With multi driver IEM’s, things like phase and balance can sometimes be an issue, affecting the overall sound. Inside each ear piece is a single driver/transducer, which has been tuned to give a full frequency response, making for a very simple yet responsive design.
Making sure of a good seal against the ear is KEY when using any in-ear devices. These delivered quite nicely, with no issues that usually come with IEM’s that are at this price point. These aren’t a set of hopped up earbuds meant for casual listening. The bass response was fantastic, with a depth that had a maintained definition and more focused top end that wasn’t brittle. We threw a few of our standard “DAW tests” at it and it handled things with ease.
Singers know odd things like distortion and overtones can seriously affect their pitch. The IE40’s could handle enough headroom our ears could take without any distortion issues arising. A big factor in IEMs is not only getting sound into the ear, but keeping unwanted sounds from leaking in, and even at higher volume levels, the ambient noise was kept at bay. This will be great for stage use, or the home studio. Comfort is always a concern, and having a set of these in for prolonged sessions didn’t cause any physical pain or discomfort, nor did we have any ear fatigue issues that usually come with close monitoring.
Overall, they’re a pro level set of IEM’s that check all the boxes for performance, and won’t break the budget. Any performer who has dismissed a set of in-ears as too expensive, should seriously consider a set of these. They’d be a great gateway into the world of in-ear monitoring.
Great design, excellent sound, priced to move