on 3 October 2012
These days we seek acoustic solutions to every audio situation in a single package. But the mature consideration is that every headphone manufacturer has to make choices. Over the ear, closed back, buds etc. Each has advantages and disadvantages. If you tried walking about with a top end Grado pair on your iPod you would experience a terrible combination. Plug earbuds into your poweramp and you would probably burst your eardrums.
What RHA appear to have achieved is the inspired balance to use ratio:
Perfectly engineered to be light and portable - Solidly built to contain well manufactured drivers that are responsive across a valid, audible dynamic range - functionally ideal as a phone/pod headphone controller with microphone included. I am still a little surprised that they are so good for the money, where is the catch?
I have listened to classical, rock, film music, jazz. It's all well delivered.
What is going to happen now is that because they are such a sublime balance between aesthetical and utilitarian, I will no doubt wear them out through prolonged use!
on 14 March 2013
I have tried many kinds of headphones, shure, monster, devon, any kind of expensive brand, I have been to NY where you can actually try even in-ear shure headphones, nothing compares to the 950i, the sound quality is amazing, low price, no idea why other companies can't do the same. RHA well done. Sound very well balanced, bass never distorting even at top volume levels, feels like being in a disco room without the subwoofer in the stomach.
I use it mainly on spotify (extreme quality) with Audio Hijack Pro as equalizer, to get the most from them.
I trust reviews, so stop wasting time reading around, going in shops trying to compare those expesive brands, buy those. 100% the best sound.
on 7 January 2014
Well first and foremost this is my first product review ever. And I have to say this is a real pleasure to write. I was looking for a pair of headphones to replace some in-ear buds I had owned for a number of years and which would sound good with the type of music I listen to.
Predominately I listen to Blues, Rock and Jazz although I listen to other genres as well. I'm not an audiophile in any sense of the word, I just like to listen to music and enjoy it. With a limited budget these were on the list along with some Sony and Sennheiser (my previous favourite headphones) ones. The reviews sold these to me!!
What can I say, I played the Ballad of John Henry and Joe Bonamassa's guitars soared, I could even pick up the jangle of the chains in the background (a first for me as I had never noticed them before). Moving onto some Def Leppard and the twin guitars on Rock of Ages were clear sounding great with Joe Elliots growling vocals. Even the harmonica on James Cottons Giant album sounded amazing, I closed my eyes and was back in New York listening to him live again.
I would also say that RHA customer support is second to none. I developed a fault with the headphone cable, so I sent an email to them. They replied within ten minutes saying they would send a replacement out in the post and a prepaid envelope to return the faulty cable. Just brilliant and an example of how a British company can stand out from the crowd.
Punchy, refreshing sound with solid bass. Somewhat similar to my now-broken AKG portable headphones in that music sounds lively and detailed without being fatiguing.
Attractive silver and black design: the branding is tasteful and I particularly like the metal adjusters for size.
Replaceable braided cable that doesn't transmit much unwanted sound when it's bumped and somehow resists getting hopelessly tangled everyday.
I'd love if it the in-line mic controls worked properly with my Nexus 4 phone.
on 9 August 2013
I endorse all the positive reviews. I primarily use these headphones with my iPod containing a vast range of classical, jazz, easy listening and pop music, and everything is handled well. The sound is really excellent, and lends to hours of comfortable, pleasant listening for all genres of music. The frequencies are beautifully balanced, with a perfect roundly defined (though never over exaggerated) base. The headphones give an excellent representation of the original recorded sound, with great transparency and stereo definition. If I were to be ultra picky, for my own taste I would like a slightly brighter top frequency, but this can easily be corrected, if desired, by changing the source music's equalizer setting. All in all, these are superb headphones - and its pleasing to know they were developed in the UK too. Highly recommended.
on 22 December 2013
I received these a few days ago and have had about 4 hours use out of them so far, so they are not fully burned in yet, if the sound changes once they are I will update this review.
Thanks to working in Hi-Fi in the past, I've had the chance to play with headphones ranging from throw away £5 pairs to high end £500+ so have a good feel for what you can expect at the various price points. The headphones themselves arrived in excellent packaging, which is an odd thing to highlight first, but I was quite impressed. The box was easy to get into and empty out, and there was no fighting with excess ties, sealed plastic or other assorted hassles. Its not often you get that these days.,
The build quality is quite high, they are surprisingly light, but fairly solid. The cups are easy to slide up and down the headband, and the materials used are good for the price level. The cups themselves are a little smaller than I was expecting, but cover my (slightly large) ears well enough. The headband seems a little tight, I'm not sure if this is something that slacken over time, but they are very slightly uncomfortable as a result. I wouldn't say they are painful by any means, but when you first put them on you are aware of the pressure. This isn't uncommon with full cans though as they do need to form a decent seal to your ears, as the cups only rotate vertically however you are aware of a little more pinching at the back of your ears than if they had also gone with a dual rotation.
The sound quality is (so far) a bit of a mixed bag. Don't get me wrong, as I said they are not fully burned in yet, and I don't expect miracles out of headphones at this price. The high and mid range are well balanced, vocals and guitars are well presented without being over bright or harsh. the low end however is a little muddier that I would have expected, as a result bass, drums, and piano's tend to fall a little further back in the compositions that I would like. This is the part I expect to change over time though as they see more use. I should point out that these headphones are aimed at a neutral (not monitor however) range so if you are looking for a "Beats" style boom, you should look at something else, if you want a hi-Fi sound this is right in the ballpark.
Out and about, I do like that there is little to no cable noise. I know you shouldn't expect there to be with over headphones, quite a few still drop the ball on that side of things. The cable itself is wrapped in a decent braid, and is detachable from the cans, so if it ever develops a weak link it can be swapped out which will certainly extend the life span. The remote is only of limited use for me as I have a Nexus 4 rather than an iPhone, but two of the controls still work. You can pause/play and use voice commands, and they still work as a hands free headset, I haven't tried answering a call with them yet. The volume controls, and forward/rewind don't work, but the remote is intended for iPhones so I didn't expect them to, the fact that I get any functionality is a plus.
Its also important to point out that they are a long way off of noise cancelling. You WILL hear the outside world, which depending on what you want will be a plus or minus. They do have a little sound bleed at higher levels, so if you are commuting bear this in mind if you don't want to annoy the people around you.
All in all, at the price point (£35 at time of purchase) they are a decent set of headphones. I would have liked a little more clarity to the bass, though this may develop in time, and as a nit pick I would have liked a little rotation, but I certainly cant complain for the price I got them.
on 11 March 2013
I am very impressed with these stylish, lightweight headphones. They fit nicely on the ears, without being too tight and they don't slip out of place when on the move. The sound is very well balanced with rich full bass, well-defined mids (pushed slightly more forward than many headphones), and clear treble (not at all harsh or sibilant). You hear every instrument very clearly so they are great for music that has complexity and a range of instruments. Because of the prominent mids, they are perfect for vocal music. Up until recently I was using Dr Dre Solo HD beats, which I quite like (although I concede that they are not suitable for all types of music). I truly believe that these RHA headphones are superior to the beats (and they cost a third of the price!!!)
on 7 September 2013
I've purchased both these and the in ear 350's RHA do. Have to say i'm impressed by both, sound quality is excellent especially at this price. Also their customer service is very good, I had to chat to them a while back and they were very helpful and quick to respond.
The cable is very well built, not worried about any issues with it fraying/breaking given its wrapped with a special cotton style material.
Overall balance is strong, its pretty flat throughout the frequency range. I'd say the 350's have a slightly better top end response, but these provide more bass which is obviously lacking from in ears. For £50 I'd say a pretty good deal, plus its a UK business so good to help UK Audio companies.
on 19 September 2012
The SA950i's are the best over the ear headphones I have ever used. The sound quality is amazing and the physical comfort feels light yet snug. I'm a guy who prefers over the ear headphones instead of in-ear ones and if you do as well, I highly recommend these. A huge plus is that these headphones also have built-in microphone and remote controls so I can answer my iPhone and adjust the volume without taking it out of my pocket.
on 13 February 2014
I've been using these headphones for almost 2 years now and I would recommend them to anyone looking for mid-range headphones. They look fantastic, the build quality is very high and the overall sound is in the same caliber as far more expensive headphones. The 3 year warranty is a nice bonus too and when my cable died after a year of use arranging for a replacement was very easy.
My only knock on them is their comfort. I have fairly large ears and once I've had them on for more than an hour of continuous use they start to feel tight on the ears. The headband isn't as cushioned as it looks either so if you're looking for headphones to wear in the office all day or on long haul flights these might not be suitable for you.