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UE launches a $2,200 pair of in-ear monitors for live performers

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But they’ll probably sound pretty great for regular listening, too

Photo: Ultimate Ears

Ultimate Ears may be familiar to most consumers for its brightly colored Bluetooth speakers, but the company also has a line of custom in-ear headphones, which just got a new top-of-the-line flagship model: the $2,200 UE Live.

The UE Live headphones top the company’s previous flagship UE18 Pro model, increasing the number of speakers per ear from six to eight, for a total of six balanced armatures, one True Tone Plus driver, and one 6mm neodymium dynamic speaker to offer even better sound. Those improvements come at a cost, though: the UE Live headphones start at $2,199, which can go even higher depending on customization options.

Ultimate Ears’ custom in-ear headphones tend to be for professional musicians to use in either studios or onstage, and the UE Live is no exception. Ultimate Ears says that the new headphones are specifically designed for musicians performing on the biggest stages at festivals, arenas, and stadiums — although they’ll probably sound pretty excellent if you’re just listening to music at home, too. As my colleague Vlad Savov noted when he reviewed the UE18 Pros, the sound quality and comfort of using a pair of custom in-ear monitors can’t be overstated, despite the hefty price point.

Ultimate Ears 6 Pro.
Photo: Ultimate Ears

Along with the UE Live, Ultimate Ears also announced the Ultimate Ears 6 PRO, a pair of $699 in-ear monitors that the company says are designed specifically for drummers, bass players, DJ, and hip-hop musicians, with two dynamic drivers for midrange and bass.

Both headphones will start shipping in May 2018.