Monster brings back the ’80s with the Monster Blaster boombox, unveils Element headphones

Monster hosted its typical CES extravaganza this year, complete with a gorgeous Bentley rocking Monster speakers, and even celebrities like Shaq. And while we missed the basketball legend, we did slip into the tent to see the company’s new gear. Highlights included a trip back to the golden days of the boombox in the new Monster Blaster, as well as the company’s blingin’ new Element headphones.

Sitting next to an old school boombox that could’ve been pulled straight out of a Run DMC video, the new Monster Blaster is a pyramid of sound designed to stream your tunes on your shoulder, right on top of your favorite stonewashed jeans jacket. Along with the production model, Monster had several other prototypes on hand, including my favorite, the neon striped version that looks like a gigantic flashlight — complete with a removable lamp at the end.

The Blaster offers drivers on both sides, as well as an active subwoofer on the bottom for powerful sound. It also adds in features like Bluetooth wireless connection, and an outdoor mode that pumps up the lower mids for a bigger sound outside in the elements. The actual production model will cost $400, and is expected to premiere in the spring.

In addition, Monster showed off its decadent new Element headphone line, which will come in multiple colors such as Gold, Platinum, and Black Slate, meant to emulate earthy colors — with a little flash added to the mix, of course. The Element arrives in three Bluetooth-capable models, including an in-ear ($150), an on-ear ($250), and an over-ear ($350). The latter has some cool features, including touch controls on the band, and a micro-USB input at the bottom to source high-quality files from newer smartphones. We had a chance to listen to the over-ear model, which offered powerful and firm bass, and a snappy topside that pushes the upper mids and treble to the forefront.

The Gold Elements are expected to be available no later than March 2016, while the rest of the family is expected to arrive later, but not later than this June.

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