Setup of the Monster Clarity HD Model One literally took less than 5 minutes with the TV in my medium sized bedroom. Connection was done through the 3.5mm jack rather than the RCA inputs. I used the same jack for connecting the Model One to my laptop, while my iPhone 4 was on the dock on top. I tested running HD movies as well as the Dark Knight Bluray in addition to MP3s encoded in 320kbps and lossless tracks (in .flac) through the laptop.
The most immediate thing I noticed was how wholesome the Clarity HD Model One sounded. For reference, my original sound setup is a Razer Mako 2.1 THX speaker system. The other thing I picked up on were vibrant background sound in movies. This is obviously thanks to the sharp tweeters, but the mid-range speakers up front also complement the sound space.
In listening to MP3s at 320kbps and lossless audio, the Model One really outshone any previous speakers I have tested, encroaching upon the territory of high-end headphones. Bass wasn’t as resounding as I expected from the 6.5-inch woofers in each speaker, but this was only noticeable during some HD videos. In the Dark Knight Bluray, as well as hip hop tracks and some dubstep, the beats were satisfyingly punchy.
Even at really high volume, the digitally amplified Model One never broke a sweat, with audio sounding just as sharp as low levels; although, bass did feel drowned out a bit.
One thing some people may be put off by is the color availability of the Clarity HD Model One as they are only available in red or yellow. Our test unit was yellow, so I can’t say how red looks, but if the deep glossy metallic finish of our test unit is anything to go by, then the red one’s should looks awesome too.
All in all there’s very little to complain about the Monster Clarity HD Model One speakers. The sound really is crystal clear on all levels, with the ability to manipulate the frequency range. Mid-range frequencies and vocals being reproduced are as faithful to studio recordings as you’d expect, limited by your playback device and encoding bitrate of course.
The bass maybe not as ‘boomy’ as a dedicated subwoofer, but then again it doesn’t need to be either. Setting up the Model One is a matter of minutes, and with multiple connectivity options, these are one of the most capable all round bookshelf speakers in the market. Portable too, given only two cable connections and the handles on top. If you can swallow the higher than average price-tag, the Monster Clarity HD Model One are definitely one of the most well engineered bookshelf speakers on the market right now.