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Beats by Dr. Dre Studio headphones (photos)

The Beats by Dr. Dre Studio headphones deliver the trifecta of sleek, comfortable design, useful features, and top-notch sound quality. If you can afford them, they're a worthy investment toward an improved listening experience.

Jasmine France
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1 of 7 Josh Miller/CNET
Generally, the listening experience, which is gathered only after putting a set on and sitting down with some favorite music, is what draws people in with headphones. Not so with the Monster Beats by Dr. Dre Studio, a sweet-looking set that will relieve you of $350 .
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The Monster Beats may not be all about style, but you wouldn't know that just by looking at them. If you wear these headphones in public, you will turn heads. The thick and padded glossy black headband descends seemingly seamlessly into the circles that hold each earcup, which are oblong and padded in a leatherette material that is obscenely cushy.
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Closer inspection of the headband discloses a seam on each side where it expands, revealing the metal support band within. This same metal accents the inside of the headband and rings thinly around each earpiece, which also features deep red accents.
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The overall effect is a sleek and stylish design that is not ostentatious. And hinges along the band also allow you to fold down the headphones for storage and transport.
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Monster includes a variety of accessories. There are two ultrathick 3.5mm audio cables--one red for standard MP3 players and one black with a built-in mic and ControlTalk remote for iPhones and iPods--each measuring 4 feet long. You also get a dual-pronged airplane adapter and a quarter-inch adapter for use with your home audio system, as well as a hard-shell carrying case with a carabiner attached
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In addition, the Beats Studio come with a cleaning cloth, and you'll need it: these headphones are highly smudge-prone. Also necessary are the included AAA batteries; the headphones are noise-canceling and need power to work.
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The Beats Studio offered an exceptionally--one might say shockingly--crisp response. That's not to say there's no bass--it does thump--but these 'phones are nicely warm and balanced in the mids and truly impressive in their delivery of high-end detail. At no point did we suffer through the muddiness that can ail bass-heavy headphones.

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