We’ve looked at numerous headphones over the past months; many are priced rather high. In fact, with headphones now serving as a fashion statement as often as they are a music accessory, it is not uncommon for them to run $150, $200 or more. So when RHA reached out and offered us a pair of their $35 MA350 Noise Isolating Aluminium Earphones we figured we would take them for a spin. After all, with students now returning to school, inexpensive headphones that won’t break the bank, let alone bring you to tears when they get lost, just might be in demand.
I’ve been using them for a few days now and thought we might take a closer look.
Inspired by the aerophonic design of a trumpet’s bell, the MA350’s clean, simple lines and aluminium finish create an earphone which not only looks good but fits comfortably whilst providing a rich, natural sound.
The MA350 is machined from solid, aircraft grade aluminium, sandblasted and partially anodised in matte black.
The earbud’s aerophonic design transfers the sound organically from the 10mm driver to the ear canal. The result is a clear, rich tone through the audio spectrum with a deep, full bass response; quite an achievement in an earbud.
The fabric braided cable produces less friction than a normal rubber cable which helps reduce tangling, prolonging product life. The shape of the earbud and the selection of silicone tips results in a snug, secure fit.
The company notes that the headphones “unique aerophonic design naturally transfers sound from the speaker to the ear”. That’s all good and well but that isn’t what stands out in my mind. No, what stands out is that despite the low price these headphones are machined from solid aluminium and have a quality-feeling fabric braided cable. I LOVE when headphones have fabric cables and, as a result, don’t get tangled. Moreover, when they have fabric cords they just feel better than the thin plastic ones that are all-too common. Add in the gold-plated 3.5mm connections and these budget headphones are only budget with regard to price.
They really do look nice and they feel substantial. And, as you can see, the fabric cord screams “quality”.
Sadly, the headphones do not have an inline microphone or inline controls for the music. No, these are simply headphones for listening to, not controlling, music. Yes, it is a bummer but remember, these headphones are under $35. Something had to give.
I do appreciate the neck adjustment which stops stress from being transferred to the actual earpieces when the cord is tugged.
Here are the specs offered by the RHA MA350s.
Drivers: 10mm Mylar
Frequency range: 16-22,000Hz
Rated/max power: 3/10mW
Cable: 1.2m Fabric braided
Connections: 3.5mm Gold plated
All I know is that these headphones sound good. No, they didn’t blow me away with their sound, but they were certainly better than the garbage Apple includes with their iOS devices; they look, feel and sound better than the budget headphones they are. Get them here in our Amazon Affiliate Store.
What I Like: Good build-quality; Decent sounding; Fabric cord; Surprisingly low price for what they offer
What Needs Improvement: Lacks in-line microphone and controls