JH Pro Music Series In-Ear Monitors - Product Evaluation

Music to a motorcyclist’s ears.

JH Pro Music Series In-Ear Monitors - Product Evaluation

JH Pro Music Series In-Ear Monitors - Product Evaluation

Used to be, motorcyclists who enjoyed listening to music had to pop for a premium touring bike. Not any more. Now, all you need to rock out on two wheels is a compact digital music player and a set of earbuds.

Unless you want to hear the music, that is. That's where JH Pro Music Series In-Ear Monitors come in. Designed by ex-Van Halen (among many others) audio engineer Jerry Harvey, these low-profile, custom-molded earphones produce far and away the best sound of any IEMs we've tested. And unlike conventional earbuds, they reduce ambient noise, though not as much as diehard earplug wearers might like.

Tested here are the JH-5Ms, which share their acrylic faceplates and shells, detachable cabling and gold-plated 3.5mm input connector with Harvey’s top-of-the-line, professional musician-quality JH-16s. A soft carrying pouch, a waterproof OtterBox travel case and a cleaning tool are included.

We tried the JH-5Ms with three full-face helmets—an Arai RX-Q, a Shoei QWEST and a Schuberth C3—on both faired and unfaired motorcycles. At moderate volume levels, sound was excellent up to 50-60 mph, depending on the coverage offered by the bike. At higher velocities, wind noise leaked past, overpowering the music; forget listening to a podcast while lapping the Nürburgring. Regardless of the brand or type of helmet, use caution when donning or doffing your lid. Yanking on the cables is a good way to turn the monitors into an expensive pair of earplugs.

Sound like a lot of hassle and expense to go through for music? Not if you can’t imagine going for a ride without your tunes.

Contact|Hearing Dynamics, Inc. 201/960-3714 www.hearingdynamics.netPrice...$499
Ups| * Superb sound quality, reduction in ambient noise * Suitable for use on or off the motorcycle * Two-year parts and labor, 30-day fit guarantees
Downs| * Custom molding requires a visit to an audiologist for impressions of your ear canals * Work well, but not as well as they should for the $$$ * Where’s the wireless model?