Top critical review
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Overpriced, Not Durable, & No Unconditional Warranty
on July 30, 2012
During the short period of time this cable worked it seemed very reliable; movement in the audio jack did not result in audio dropping, the cable seemed sturdy enough, and the sound quality of my Sony studio-monitor headphones was not compromised.
I specifically purchased this because it was advertised as "ultra-flexible" to minimize the stress on the iPhone/iPad headphone jacks. Many people have had the experience of plugging-in a pair of headphones, and the plug experiences an amount of stress for one reason or another which sometimes results in a broken headphone plug; my purchase of this item was to subvert that. I paid almost $15 for this item, and it stopped working after 8 days of usage; the left channel cut-out due to the flexing of the cable. I was able to discern the nature of the damage by returning the cable to the straight position, which mostly restored the left channel. This cable extension was never "flexed" more than 35-40 degrees in a single direction, and that this cable would fail at such an angle hardly constitutes "ultra-flexible" in my opinion. The plug itself was intact; the problem was definitely an internal connection/wiring failure. Note that this cable was installed along a surface and was not constantly flexing; it was effectively flexed once along a curved casing, established as working, and then left unmoved and untouched for 8 days.
(However, at least it was the cable that was damaged, and not the headphone jack itself, so I guess in that way it did its job.)
Another reason I purchased this cable is because I am a working musician, and I am familiar with the Monster brand because they have such a fantastic warranty on instrument cables; Monster unconditionally guarantees any instrument cable, so you can literally walk into a music shop, shear the Monster instrument cable in-half with a pair of scissors while the store associate watches, and Monster's warranty dictates that the associate is to give you a replacement cable in exchange for the shorn cable; this is why Monster-brand instrument cables are relatively expensive when compared to other instrument cables.
This unconditional warranty is not applicable for the iCableLink.
When I spoke to Monster cable on the phone, they said that they would be happy to inspect the product for a warranty exchange (for free, after shipping costs; how generous!) but that it sounded like the cable was damaged due to misuse or neglect, which is not covered by their warranty; it sounded to them like the cable was flexed "too much." So much for "ultra-flexible," as advertised on the package. Finally, if you send a product to Monster for "warranty inspection" and they determine that it's a counterfeit: the cost of "return shipping" to you is $50. Amazon will issue a refund, and FREE return shipping, regardless of whether or not an item is defective or counterfeit, so why even bother dealing with Monster?
It is admittedly my fault that I made an assumption about a product based upon my familiarity with that brand-name from previous experience, as I assumed the Monster iCableLink was comparatively overpriced because of the same kind of unconditional warranty carried by their other audio cables. It is unfortunate that the iCableLink is not unconditionally guaranteed like many other Monster audio products, yet carries the same comparable mark-up. I can buy many headphone adapter cables for $2 which will only last a week, yet I paid extra for the Monster cable because of their alleged durability and my previous experience with their warranty. This product reflects neither the advertised "ultra-flexible" durability, nor the legendary Monster warranty, so I am returning it, ever grateful for Amazon's stellar returns department.
This is a perfectly functional headphone extension/adapter to be sure, but there's nothing special about it which warrants the price or hype on the package; it's just as good as its $2 analog available from any generic brand, and it will seemingly fail under the same circumstances.