Archive Home arrow Reviews: arrow Audio arrow RHA SA950i Portable Headphones

RHA SA950i Portable Headphones E-mail
Reviews - Featured Reviews: Audio
Written by Steven Iglesias-Hearst   
Thursday, 01 November 2012
Table of Contents: Page Index
RHA SA950i Portable Headphones
Closer Look: RHA SA950i Headphones
RHA SA950i Detailed Features
Testing and Results
Final Thoughts and Conclusion

Testing & Results

Testing Methodology

The RHA SA950i On-Ear Portable Headphones were tested in a range of scenarios such as listening to music and watching movies (PC and mobile). Since there are no benchmarks that can produce comparative results I will give my impressions on the performance and function of the SA950i Headphones including important factors relating to comfort and ease of use. Please remember that these are my personal impressions and may not reflect the way you would feel, after all we are all different and what's good for me may not be so for you.

Tested Devices

  • iPhone 4
  • iPhone 4S
  • iPod Touch 4th Gen
  • Samsung Galaxy S II
  • Blackberry Curve 8520
  • ASUS P8Z68-V Pro On-board (Realtek ALC892) + Amplified via Creative T7700 7.1 Surround System


I recently tested the CA-200 Noise Isolating Over-Ear Headphones from RHA and they set a very good precedence. While comparing the on-ear SA950i Portable Headphones to the over-ear CA-200 Noise isolating Headphones might be like comparing apples to pears, there are enough similarities between the two sets of headphones from RHA to reach the conclusion I have. The SA950i Headphones didn't work with my Blackberry via the supplied cable, instead a standard 3.5mm stereo cable was needed to bypass that minor issue.

The SA950i On-Ear Portable Headphones are good, but I was expecting more. The 40mm titanium coated mylar drivers produce deep low frequency bass without over powering the mid and high range frequencies. There is definite clarity, fidelity and definition but they lack the perception of depth, the sound is perceived in your head rather than around it. My other problem with them is that they are not really loud enough until you amplify them.

Bass boost on an iPhone/iPod resulted in all other frequencies being lowered rather than bass being boosted, which means that while I had the required EQ to suit the music I was listening to, my need for a louder listening experience wasn't satiated. I had a similar experience with the Samsung Galaxy S II but there were other factors out of my control with these devices; The iPhone's, the iPod Touch and the Galaxy S II are not mine and therefore I couldn't listen to the same music files across all devices. When listening on my Blackberry (which has AUDIOBOOST) via a standard 3.5mm stereo cable I found that the experience was only slightly louder. When listening on my PC (amplified via external surround system) the RHA SA950i On-Ear Portable Headphones really showed what they are capable of.



# RE: RHA SA950i Portable Headphoneskzinti1 2013-02-06 11:37
I just had an idea.
It would be helpful if you could place headphones you're testing on a full-sized mannequins head and show a pic of it. That would give a nice perspective of the relative sizes of such products.
Why a mannequin rather than a real person? People vary in size. Mannequins are of standardized sizes and everyone has seen mannequins in stores. So, such an image should be relevant to a review.
Of course, we'd still need your excellent descriptions of the comfort level and quality of these items in fit, finish and operation.
Report Comment
# RE: RE: RHA SA950i Portable HeadphonesOlin Coles 2013-02-06 11:41
That's not a bad suggestion, but outfitting all of our staff with mannequin heads could be costly. What if measurements were given, instead?
Report Comment
# MrMalcolm Shakesheff 2013-06-14 03:55
I bought these & use them with Poweramp on my Sony Experia J. The result is fantastic over a wide range of different types of music from Mozart to White Stripes.Plenty of noise,even though I am bound to be a bit deaf after
60 years of ear bashing. For some one who dreamed of owning a Ferrograph reel to reel in my teenage years this is a miracle combination of wonderful sound unimaginable back then,2nd half of the 1950's.Ok they could be more comfortable but at 50 an excellent buy.

Retired in Brittany, france
Report Comment

Comments have been disabled by the administrator.

Search Benchmark Reviews

Like Benchmark Reviews on FacebookFollow Benchmark Reviews on Twitter