Cooler Master MH751: ignorance is bliss?
Updated: Jul 14, 2020
Welcome back to the neighborhood! Its Your Friendly Neighborhood Reviewer here, and this go around, this is going to be a blog exclusive review. I wrote up this review forever ago, but I lost my pictures, and only have terrible grainy video left-over. And, sorry if this is a bit of a spoiler, but these aren't really worth investing anymore effort in at this point. So if you're a fan, and want me to update this review with some better pictures, feel free to send them in! Otherwise, you'll just get the knowledge and mediocre images for now. But, if you don't feel like reading, and are considering these... the short of it all is: "Just don't."
So, let’s start things out by talking about the build. The strength of this unit is that it is extremely light, but there were some obvious build-quality compromises that were made to accomplish this. The MH751 is made out of a mostly hard, scratchy plastic, with some metal connecting joints. The microphone is detachable and bends in front of your face to capture directional speech more effectively, but made out of the same, scratchy, plastic material.
The pads are made out of a soft material, but they are not memory foam. Additionally, they appear to have been glued-on to the base of the ear cups, and are therefore non-removable.
The leatherette, which the covers both the pads and the headband, feels extremely cheap and I suspect that it might flake-off over time. The structure of the headband itself also seems fragile. It is hallow in the middle and its underside is easily flexed. I’m not sure these will stand the test of time. From online accounts, the headband may be prone to snapping in the middle, even under normal use-case scenarios.
I do like the fit of this set; however. The pads are plush, their size is neither too large nor too small, and the material feels soft on your skin. The clamp is also just about right, and they are so light in weight that you might forget that you are wearing them at times if it wasn’t for the fact that your face gets hot because the leatherette lacks in breath-ability.
The cable has a braided, black, sleeve, covering and an inline volume adjustment wheel with a microphone mute. The cable itself is a bit long, but this could helpful in a situation where you’re plugging both the headphone and the microphone connectors into your computer’s sound-card. The cable itself, terminates in a 4 pole, 3.5 mm jack, but a female 4 pole 3.5 mm to a 3 pole 3.5 mm male mic and 3 pole 3.5 mm male audio adapter is included.
Now, let’s talk about the mic. Microphone clarity was pretty good… when it worked. It did not work all use cases; however. For example, when plugged in a Galaxy Note, and using the set for phone conversations, the audio would cut out and produce garbled, static noise, after a few minutes of use. This interference would then not remit until the call was ended. I am unsure why or how this occurred or if it was just my particular unit that displayed this problem, but “buyer beware” and all that. I bought this set for my wife so she could make business phone calls. Needless, to say, this unit ended up going back to Amazon, as it did not fulfill its intended purpose, and I was hesitant to order a replacement unit because of its spotty performance.
I also was not in love with the sound. At first, I was impressed. For $65-dollar gaming headphone, these actually sound quite nice. There is, at the very least, an illusion of detail, or suggests enough detail and clarity to impress novice. The bass is most certainly accentuated, but it does get somewhat low and does not darken the overall sound profile or bleed into the mids. The mids are somewhat forward, particularly in the vocal range, and the vocals image particularly well. The highs are crisp and appear to be pushed forward a bit, but roll off on the top before anything becomes overly sibilant.
I’m not sure if a frequency graph would support this, but, to me… it sounds like there are three distinct sections in the frequency response; one in the bass region, one in the mids, and one the treble where those portions of the frequency spectrum are pushed forward and accentuated from the rest of the mix. It almost sounds more like a “W” than a “V” shape to my ears. The rest of the frequency response takes a back seat, and this produces an inaccurate and surprising representation on some tracks where you would expect a more coherent presentation to the music. you can also tell they were designed primarily for gaming and not music listening.
Similarly, imaging is also not coherent, as the music is primarily separated into one of three special regions- right in front, catty-corner angled to the side, or wide left or right ON the side. This presentation also could appear odd to the listener if one has other, more capable, headphones to compare these with.
But, here’s my main gripe with this headphone. The timbre! This headphone does not sound natural at all. In general, it sounds dull, dry, and has an overly crisp, airy quality- especially in the aforementioned inflection points in both the mids and the highs. Additionally, the bass is not exactly what I would consider tight, but it also lacks sustain- particularly in the sub bass region. This headphone thumps more than it slams, and any rumble is virtually nonexistent.
Overall, it sounds like moderately, inexpensive champagne tastes while being drank from a cheap plastic glass at an outdoor event. It has some sparkle, but it fizzles out quite quickly, and fails to excite the more sophisticated crowd.
While these traits are not advantageous for music listening, I could see how a gamer might prefer some of these characteristics, especially in first person shooter or action-based scenarios. For example, the simplified and diffusely-stratified representation of the environment these presents might assist a gamer with sound localization. Further, their dull presentation might provide a gamer with sufficient detail for object identification, but not so much so that they become fatiguing to listen to over long gaming sessions.
I would counter; however, that auditioning other set-ups would result in a much more enjoyable gaming experience. For example, for closed-backed, options, I might consider modified CAL’s (or E-MU Purplehearts) with large Meze 99 Classic Pads, M40X’s with angled Brainwavz HM5 Sheepskin pads, or 1More Triple Driver Over-Ears.
For open back, variations, I would think about K7XX’s, especially when paired with a DarkVoice… or possibly something like the Sennheiser 58X, even though the soundstage might be more limited. With each of these headphones you can get a wired or wireless mod mic or use and external microphone such as the one pictured here. As a side note, never underestimate the power of suspensions and pop filters when it comes to microphone clarity.
But, getting back to alternative recommendations… I would even recommend cheaper, open-back options over these, like the Koss Porta Pro with Yaxi Pads. The screw on the side of the Porta Pro’s is supposedly there to allow for the attachment of a separate microphone boom made by Koss, and the Massdrop, or “Drop,” version of the Porta Pro’s comes with an inline microphone as a more accessible alternative. Additionally, although the soundstage isn’t “as good” with the Porta Pro’s, the Koss KPH30i also has an inline mic, and doesn’t require the additional purchase of Yaxi Pads to make them shine. I’ll cover the modifications that I’m referencing in future videos or blog posts.
In conclusion, do I recommend the Cooler Master MH751. I think by now, you, might guess that my answer would be “No.” For me it is simply too unnatural, and, at least for my unit, its microphone was unreliable. While a prioritized gamer might find these to be a solid, all-a-rounder, as they are light, comfortable, and do provide decent audio quality and acceptable microphone clarity… when the microphone works.... The MH751 does have its hindrances; however, and its audio and questionable, build-quality choices hold it back.
To a sophisticated, more discerning customer, these will most certainly fall short of their prudent expectations, as they have for me. They may impress at first, but any magic they possess; will most likely wear quickly. If audio is a priority for you, as it is for me, you’ll most likely be left only with regret in the end. This is why my set went back, and why I’d urge you to steer clear of these in most circumstances.
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