Feeds

Ten... in-ear headphones

Aural fixation

High performance access to file storage

Reid and Heath MA-350

RH Numbers

Reid and Heath Acoustics enters the market with its first IEM attempt here, and ticks all the right boxes. The "aerophonic design" is very basic but elegant and comes with a fibre-weave covered cable to keep knottage easily manageable.

RH Recommended Medal

The MA-350s have a complete output, with a warm prominent bass, clear mid-range and a reasonable top end. Don't get me wrong, there's a noticeable difference between these and some of the pricier earbuds. Sound isn't as spatial as others in the roundup, but for a pair of sub-£50 earbuds, RHA has really pulled something out of the hat. Boy, do they go up loud too.. and get to very high levels before any distortion.

There are just three silicone tips and a faux velvet bag to carry them around, which could be improved upon. Still, when it comes to value for money, the RHA MA-350s take some beating. A dozen of you were lucky enough to win a pair in one of our last competitions. Let us know what you think of them.

Read Heath Acoustics MA-350

Reg Rating 85%
Price £30
More info Reid and Heath

Sennheiser IE 8

RH Numbers
RH Editor's Choice

Sennheiser has been making audio gear for long enough now that you can be fairly confident you'll be buying into a good pair of reliable headphones. Indeed, the IE 8s live up to expectations – a point proved by the fact that this model is still selling strong a decade after its first release. There's a good reason why.

The design is slick, with a diamond shape that rests in the ears comfortably, without hassle. No matter which way you like to wear them, the IE 8s fit quickly and snug. This is aided by the biggest collection of tips found with any of these headphone sets – from double ended to comply foam. The cable is fairly rugged too and interchangeable, if accidentally damaged.

My impression of the sound is one of completeness. Perhaps too perfect that it lacks character, but then a flat sound that neither adds nor takes away is what appeals to audiophiles. Yet I found I liked these more with slight tweak to the bass to add some seasoning to the single dynamic driver used in each earpiece.

Sennheiser doesn't take an entirely purist approach though, as you can choose how balanced you'd like the IE 8s to be, increasing the bass levels with the trim tool that comes in the box. Crank it up and dance music sound insane. There is still a decent sense of space and a reasonable level of noise isolation too. As an all rounder, the IE 8s are podium topper. They're hardly inexpensive, but still affordable and with all extra peripherals taken into account, worth every penny.

Sennheiser IE 8

Reg Rating 90%
Price £200
More info Sennheiser

High performance access to file storage

Next page: Shure SE535

More from The Register

next story
Report: Apple seeking to raise iPhone 6 price by a HUNDRED BUCKS
'Well, that 5c experiment didn't go so well – let's try the other direction'
Microsoft lobs pre-release Windows Phone 8.1 at devs who dare
App makers can load it before anyone else, but if they do they're stuck with it
Zucker punched: Google gobbles Facebook-wooed Titan Aerospace
Up, up and away in my beautiful balloon flying broadband-bot
Nvidia gamers hit trifecta with driver, optimizer, and mobile upgrades
Li'l Shield moves up to Android 4.4.2 KitKat, GameStream comes to notebooks
AMD unveils Godzilla's graphics card – 'the world's fastest, period'
The Radeon R9 295X2: Water-cooled, 5,632 stream processors, 11.5TFLOPS
Sony battery recall as VAIO goes out with a bang, not a whimper
The perils of having Panasonic as a partner
NORKS' own smartmobe pegged as Chinese landfill Android
Fake kit in the hermit kingdom? That's just Kim Jong-un-believable!
Gimme a high S5: Samsung Galaxy S5 puts substance over style
Biometrics and kid-friendly mode in back-to-basics blockbuster
prev story

Whitepapers

Securing web applications made simple and scalable
In this whitepaper learn how automated security testing can provide a simple and scalable way to protect your web applications.
Five 3D headsets to be won!
We were so impressed by the Durovis Dive headset we’ve asked the company to give some away to Reg readers.
HP ArcSight ESM solution helps Finansbank
Based on their experience using HP ArcSight Enterprise Security Manager for IT security operations, Finansbank moved to HP ArcSight ESM for fraud management.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Mobile application security study
Download this report to see the alarming realities regarding the sheer number of applications vulnerable to attack, as well as the most common and easily addressable vulnerability errors.