Rock your heart out with these headphones form RHA!
I am sitting here in the middle of children bickering about the colour of Flash McQueen, is he red or bright red. I can hear it just faintly through these RHA SA950i headphones. I pump the volume up slightly on both the Apple TV showing a Cars 2 special, and the Philip Glass Rework piece I am listening to featuring Beck. Great stuff, and these headphones certainly help both in terms of audio quality, and noise isolation.
RHA is a young British company with just a handful of products, but still with the courage to contact me about a review. A company can fall into any of the following categories: large not caring about much about more coverage using in-house PR-people such as for example Bose, quite large using a PR-firm that tries to get the most value from each test such as Monster Cable, and Urbanears or young fresh and eager for a scrap such as Urbanista and RHA.
The style of the SA950i is classic, and reminds me of Marshall speakers in the design. They are also quite similar to the Crossfade LP from Vero Moda, albeit a whole lot smaller. Glossy black earcups with faux leather covering the headband. Overall I get a kind of seventies Led Zeppelin feel out of these that isn’t wrong, but actually quite refreshing since most designs lately try to cater to a hip hop audience.
The sound is also quite old-school, and listening to a variety of sound sources the ones striking the best chords are definitely old-school rock, metal and jazz with a drive. Nirvana, and grunge also sound amazingly well using the 40mm drivers the SA950i features. It does have a good bass response, but compared to the headphones catering directly to hip hop such as the Beats by Dr Dre or techno such as AIAIAI TMA-1 they feel flat. You have to know your music of choice to get the most out of the SA950i.
A real strength of the SA950i is the light weight, and great fabric cord. These are true highlight of the product. Still with only a weight of 105 grams the headphones tend to feel warm due to using faux leather of the ear cushions. The cord is all good however with zero noise transference when it moves, and no tendency to tangle whatsoever. It comes with a good microphone placed next to the mouth. It also has the volume controls that I think should be standard for any i- headphones. The cord is quite long, which makes is suitable for both the iPad, and portable computer as well.
The SA950i has a poor choice of name that is completely lost when trying to remember it, and I would have preferred something like RHA Rocksteady. It is however a highly affordable set of headphones offering great sound for rock, metal and spoken audio and ok sound for hip hop and pop. A cool design, and great cord makes it easy to recommend even though it isn’t collapsible or comes with a travel pouch.