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Marshal Minor - Sound Quality and Verdict

By Hugo Jobling



Our Score:


Admittedly, after a few days of use we became more accustomed to the fit and could at least go a couple of hours without the Minors becoming painful to wear - which they were initially. Again, we should point out that the Minor's aren't unique here, not that such a defence is much use. We are open to the idea that we have abnormal ears, and that others' will prove more accommodating to the Minors, but think it unlikely.

We don't think anyone could prove immune to the worst issue the Minors have, which is that they offer very little noise isolation. Because the earpieces sit away from your canal, there's plenty of space for external noise to infiltrate. Even with music playing quite loudly we had no problem hearing colleagues chatting or the clatter of our keyboard, which proved quite distracting. Wear the Minors on a busy bus or tube and you're guaranteed to get annoyed by the intrusion of noise from your fellow passengers.

To their credit, the Minor earphones' audio quality can't be faulted for their price. The large body has the advantage that it can fit a large driver, which physics dictates makes it easier to get a good reproduction from. On phone calls this means clear, easily audible conversations - and the lack of complaints from any recipients assured us the microphone is good, too. But it's with music that the sound quality really matters, and that we were impressed by the Minors.

For a start, the level of clarity is very good, with plenty of detail coming through listening to the likes of Frou Frou and Peter Gregson. Female vocals benefit from the crisp high end, and guitars from the similar mid-range. We particularly appreciated the bass balance, with the low-end filling in well, without becoming overpowering. The result is that drums, woodwind instruments, and the deeper strings (think cello not viola) have plenty of presence, but don't overpower the soundstage. Whether listening to Wagner, Little Axe or Nine Inch Nails the Minors sound every bit as good as you could expect for under £50.


As earphones go the Minors are up among the best we've listened to. If you're among the many who simply won't or can't cope with sticking anything into your ear canal, therefore, you would do well to give the Minors an audition. Just be aware that you may find, like us, that the fit isn't comfortable for long periods of time.

Overall Score


Scores In Detail

  • Value 7
  • Sound Quality 8

Frank Anconia

October 25, 2013, 5:52 am

In short, it sucks


November 30, 2013, 12:30 pm

In short, they're the best earphone in this millenium.


January 1, 2014, 9:43 pm

I bought these a week ago, the design is nice and they seem to stay in my ears well, they do become uncomfortable though and I have noticed some distortion with the sound, my old regular iPhone headphones sounded better, with more bass and clearer sound. I would only recommend these to people who are sick of their headphones falling out, I am a little disappointed and expected more from such a well established company..

Tero Kinnunen

April 17, 2014, 12:16 pm

I actually prefer no noise isolation. I like to hear surrounding traffic and conversations and such. Even walking with noise isolation headphones feels weird to me. I have another pair of earphones for occasional noise isolation use, but I personally quite rarely need those. I see it as a matter of choice rather than "the worst issue".


June 26, 2014, 10:29 am

Hi, Tero. I'm with you on prefering noise isolation. What other headphones have you used?

Tero Kinnunen

June 28, 2014, 8:31 am

Hi Inswinger. I used Urbanears Medis first, but after the plug broke from it and the also the warranty replacement, I am trying if Marshall would be more durable. They are likely exactly the same phones, but at least the plug feels sturdier in Marshall. I am also using Marshall Majors. They were smaller though than I expected. I also have some cheap isolating in-ear plugs that I don't like very much.


July 23, 2014, 1:33 pm

Thanks for the reviews guys. I am glad to have come to this website as I am supposed to grab one of this earphones.

Tom Roy

August 11, 2014, 12:11 am

I just purchased a Marshall Minor while on holiday in Hong Kong. I live in
Dubai, so I can't take it back to the store. Problem is the 3-clicks to go
back one song on the in-line remotedoes not work. I am using it with my Samsung Galaxy Note II. Any one else have similar problems with the in-line remote?


February 10, 2015, 6:00 pm

I think I know 1 problem with uor fittng that many does the rouded side on the litle buds should be uotwards. Not like you have it on your secont picture in page 2.


May 5, 2015, 4:57 am

durability is not something these earphones have going for them. I'm on my second pair in 1 year, and my current pair just stopped working last week. The left side konked out, because of the flimsy jack. If you're a commuter who likes their music device in their pocket, I can't recommend these for you as far as durability goes.. I have a friend on his third pair. Personally will go with Shure SE215, I hear those are good albeit twice the price.

jo løvbrøtte

May 20, 2015, 6:00 pm

I happen to have both the minors and the 215! 215 sounds better, but only when I lay in bed, motionless! Canalfit is not for the road. The minors slightly less sound quality, but the perfect match for my bikerides.

Jeffry Suputra

July 18, 2015, 4:46 am

no, it is a bit tricky to do lol

i have 1, and i used to be a sales of marshall products, some of my costumers said 3 clicks not working, it just a bit tricky to do.


February 1, 2016, 11:58 pm

I know this is late but I own these and I would like to say something about the tonal depth.

The frequency range is impressive, me being able to hear as low as 35Hz at normal volume, all the way up to about 18kHz. Severe warbling is audible at 18-24kHz on a tone sweep with a huge bump at about 3kHz and 80-100Hz. Even at max volume through an amplifier I can't hear past 30Hz.

So it isn't at all flat, but it's pretty well tuned for most types of music.

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