Reid and Heath Acoustics MA750 In-Ear Monitor Page 2

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Sound
As with RHA's previous in-ear releases, the sound of the MA750 is underpinned by powerful bass response, but it is an excellent all-round performer. The bass is definitely enhanced—though RHA bills the MA750 as the "balanced" option in the product line, its low end presence is well above what I consider neutral. There's a strong emphasis on sub-bass, and a little less on mid-bass, which is the way I like it. The deep bass gives the sound a solid "thump" while the lack of mid-bass bloat prevents the MA750 from sounding bloated and overly thick.

The midrange of the RHA MA750 is less veiled than that of the similarly-priced Onkyo IE-HF300. It's still a warm and full-bodied earphone, but the clarity is very decent considering the enhanced-bass sound signature—the MA750 may be a little less transparent than the VSonic GR07 Bass Edition, but, despite its name, the VSonic unit also has significantly less bass.

The upper midrange of the MA750 is energetic but emphasis diminishes before getting into the regions that typically cause in-ear earphones to sound harsh and/or sibilant. The MA750 is brighter overall compared to many other "warm" earphones, such as the Shure SE215, and has a tendency to sound a touch "tizzy" at high volumes, thanks to the lower treble emphasis. It isn't bothersome, however, and I definitely would not call the treble energy excessive, especially compared to some of the popular balanced armature sets in this price range. The soundstage of the MA750 is also pretty good, with ample width, good separation, and no tendency towards congestion despite the enhanced bass—a great showing for a reasonably-priced dynamic in-ear.

Wrap-up
The RHA MA750 is one of precious few in-ear earphones that successfully combine a sound signature acceptable to the mainstream consumer, a design with no serious faults, and a price tag that—in the post-Beats world, at least—makes sense for someone in search of good headphones. The earphones are all but bulletproof, offer a secure fit, isolate well, and are backed by a 3-year warranty. For a fun-sounding earphone priced just north of $100, there's just not much more one could ask from the MA750. Wall of Fame bound!

Resources
Manufacturer's home page and MA750 product page.
Head-Fi reviews here and here.

COMPANY INFO
Reid and Heath Acoustics
ARTICLE CONTENTS
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COMMENTS
pieman3141's picture

I've had these for about 1.5 months now. I can attest to the quality, but I can't say that they're problem-free.

I've already replaced these once, after the internal, wire in one side of the cable came loose. There was no cosmetic difference, but one side stopped working. The sheathiing is also quite sticky, and catches on my clothes, causing strain. The wire clip doesn't work, because the cable is too thick.

Finally, the eartips are extremely difficult for me to attach. I don't know if I'm doing it wrong, or whatever, but it's downright impossible for me to use any of the eartips. I've ordered Sony Hybrids (which I think will fit, if I'm reading correctly) in hopes to alleviate this.

ljokerl's picture

Doesn't seem like there's been any issues reported in the Head-Fi thread but all earphones go wrong in one proportion or another.

 

I haven't had any issues with the eartips, though - might be experience but I can get pretty much any tip on an earphone these days. The trick is to work the nozzle into the eartip at a 45 degree angle at first. Once you have one side of the eartip on you can push/roll the rest of it on. 

pieman3141's picture

The problem with the eartips is that the inside tubes are too flexible. I also have a disability which makes this even more difficult, which basically means I can't use the eartips on the MA750s. Alas.

balkanguy's picture

Your extremely deep knowledge of all the available offerings out there would be very helpful so I can find others I may like even more! =)  Think of it as a 'reference', so U can know what I am seeking.  I may OEM them as well ~ whatever sounds as good or better.  My E-Mail is 'balkanguy at live dot com'  Thanx!

NyquistRate's picture

Are these replacing the "Shure SE 215" on the wall?

ljokerl's picture

That's a very good question... the MA750 sounds better to me but the Shures weigh less, isolate outside noise a little better, and hit the magic sub-$100 mark. I'll consult with Tyll and see if we want to make the change! 

Tyll Hertsens's picture

ljokerl says they're better than the Shure's for the money. He's got last word on IEMs at InnerFidelity. It's settled, the RHA MA750 will go up on the wall this weekend. Thanks for your work, Joker!

ljokerl's picture

And thus it was written. Perhaps Shure will  make it back onto the WoF with the upcoming entry-level SE112. 

NyquistRate's picture

This:

"Thanks for your work, Joker!"

Actually, thanks to both of you for so much contribution to this hobby.

Doru_Lutai's picture

They look great. i will buy the MA750 over the Shures...

jeckyll's picture

My SE215's are getting a bit beat up but I was going to get at least another year out of them ... now I'm thinking of picking up a set of MA750's to compare.

:)

ljokerl's picture

...and if you're into music there aren't many things that will give you as many hours of entertainment for your hundred bucks as a good set of earphones, even if you get that healthy upgrade urge every year or two devil

Clintg37's picture

Tyll, help me out here if you don't mind.  What's your recommendation between the RHA MA-750, HiFiMan RE-400, and the AKG K376?  I'm looking for an IEM that's reasonably priced and has similar sound to my Audio Technica ATH M50's.  Thanks!

ljokerl's picture

... but I wrote the MA750 review so I'll reply. I don't like the K376 that much - it's not bad, but it doesn't compete with the RE-400 or MA750 for me. The RE-400 is a balanced earphone, some would (and do) say bass-light. That'll be the biggest difference between it and your M50 aside from soundstaging. The MA750 has the impact, but not the clarity or neutral tone of the RE-400. In the end it depends on what you want - the clean, neutral, somewhat mid-centric RE-400 or the warmer, more "fun" MA750 with its plentiful bass. The MA750 would be the "safe" choice for most listeners. 

altofame's picture

Hi. Thank you for an informative review. I have a couple of questions I would like to ask:

1. I also own the lower-priced RHA MA350. Now I am not sure whether or not you have tried them. Basically, I am wondering how the sound signature on 750 differs from 350?

2. I am considering both RHA MA750i and Philips Fidelio S2 as a sort of an upgrade from MA350, and would like to ask if you could give me some advice? Some specifics: 2.1 Do you think the over-ear cable could be a problem for people with glasses? 2.2 Does the s2 leak sound (since it has a semi-open back) to the point where it may be inappropriate, for example, during flights? 2.3 Which pair do you think would be more of an all-rounder? I listen to all sorts of music, usually and happily with my ATH-M50, but I can't carry the cans around. 

Thank you for your help!

Cheers.

JacktheMac's picture

Hi

Great forum !

I recently bought a pair of 750s based on Amazon reviews and was very disappointed. Very thin, cold sound, practically no bass, poor mid-range definition, tinny top end. I returned them to RHA who confirmed they were 'rather bright' and replaced them but I'm returning them to Amazon and buying some Klipsch X10is. The reasons ?

1. I wear glasses and the over-the-ear cable design is totally impossible. Before I'd even plugged them into my iPod I was irritated, as wrapping the cords then trying to blance them on top of my spec arms did not work, and will never work. Even without glasses, I find the over-the-ear design to be a faff – trying to put them on in the dark in bed is damn near impossible. To answer your other question, I don't believe they leaked sound to any noticeable extent.

2. The buds. Despite a good selection of buds, none fitted my ear with anything like the comfort of the Klipisch buds. I ended up removing some buds off $5 Batman headphones my kids had and using them: much more comfortable.

3. The sound quality. If RHA had returned them and said my phones had a major fault I might have pressed ahead despite 1 & 2 above. But the sound quality is so poor that it would require a quantum leap just to become average.

I absolutely loved the design of these phones, and desperately wanted to like them. Maybe it's just me, but I think there's a bit of a wow factor (small, independent Scottish company; rave reviews; Apple-like photos and packaging) that has swayed reviewers' heads. If my pair were just 'rather bright' then they have a very long way to go to match the quality of my old Klipsch S4iis...

JacktheMac's picture

I’ve been looking to replace and upgrade my much-loved, much-worn Klipsch S4s for some time. Like everyone else’s, the cable is disintegrating around the jack plug.

I’ve narrowed the competition down to the six below. Some well known brands have fallen by because of Amazon reports of poor construction, and I don’t think the Bose IE2 would form a proper in-ear seal.

Klipsch x10i (£99) (first choice: will be handled gently !)

Sony XBA2iP  (£120) (second choice ?)

Philips Fidelio S2 (£97)

Beyerdynamic MMX101 iE (£102)

HiFiMan RE400 (£85)

Etymotic Research HF5 (£120)

 

Other than sound quality my main concern is ensuring a good fit of the bud to the ear. In this respect the Klipsch buds excel. I have yet to experience a better fit that the Klipsch oval bud, and it’s one of the reasons I’m drawn to the X10, as the same buds are used as on the S4 variants.

I tried the RHA 750s but was very disappointed (see above).

Anyone have any other suggestions I may have missed ? I will be listening to a lot of radio drama on them, and also enjoy a strong bass.

Do let me know if you can think of a better phone in the sub £120 range. Having in-line volume controls or iPhone controllability is not an issue.

Many thanks

Jack

Apologies to the Mods if this is in the wrong section of the forum: please move it if necessary.

roughavoc's picture

I also have the same thoughts sound wise with the 750's. I ended up reading the What Hi-Fi review which also said the same thing. But after burning them in for around a week they turned into a whole new pair of headphones.

Whilst my pairs are 2 days into their week long burn process, hopefully they mirror what the guys at What Hi-Fi found.

Just thought I would tell you this, as every review seems to praise these for how amazing they sound yet to me and you, they sound terrible. Maybe they just needed a week long of burning in now.

JacktheMac's picture

I immediately gave mine 5-6 days of near round-the-clock burning in. Made no difference. So I left them on a loop every night for a week. I could not detect any improvement.

There was such a huge disparity between what I was hearing and what other people had written that I sent them back. I really hoped RHA were going to tell me I had bought a completely duff pair with major problems, but after testing them they merely commented that the headphones "are a little on the bright side". I returned the replacement pair they sent me to Amazon.

RHA's aftersales service is excellent, so if your pair don't improve I would get in touch with them.

Seriousaboutaudio's picture

Just got these and have to say I'm not really impressed. The sound is very similar to Apple Earpods which are only $29 except the 750's have slightly brighter highs which doesnt necessarily mean better highs. Anyone else compare these to Earpods?

JohnnieP3's picture

Like the folks above, I read the reviews on Inner Fidelity and on What HiFi and bought a pair yesterday. To say that I was disappointed is an understatement. They sounded flat, tinny, empty, nasally, and the treble sounded white-hot where cymbals felt like they were going to bore a hole in my brain. Really, they were unlistenable. I thought "what on earth are these people hearing in these earphones?!", they are awful and worth $128 less that the $129 I spent for them... I absolutely would not accept having to "burn in" a pair of headphones for two weeks to make them listenable, which is a product defect in my eyes.

Well, that was yesterday and today is a new day. I patiently tried and fiddled with every one of the provided ear tip sets and found that only one set worked for me, and that was the smallest-sized silicon tips moistened slightly for easier insertion. I discovered that if there is even just the slightest hint of an incomplete seal the sound quality of these phones is seriously degraded. Using the small silicon tips, and the smalls only, seated just-right, these earphones literally came to life. Like the AKG K550's, proper fit and seal is the everything. Overall I now rather like them, which is quite a change from yesterday where I was ready to return them or set them on fire (the more satisfying but expensive option!). If you're having difficulty, I suggest going through all the provided tips and make SURE you choose the set that completely seals the 'phones in your ear canal. I wonder if that was the issue with the What HiFi review all along? Not likely, but its certainly possible. If you think they're terrible, try pushing and holding them in your ears while listening to see if there's a difference - I'll bet there is.

JohnnieP3's picture

I guess we know who the new guy is to IEM's around here,,, c'est moi!

JacktheMac's picture

I read the first paragraph of your posting with a growing sense of recognition. Your experience mirrored mine precisely.

Because of the many glowing write-ups I was convinced I was doing something wrong, and so I tried every one of the (many) buds RHA provided, in every conceivable position short of sticking them up my nose. But no matter what I tried the sound was still crap.

I don’t want to be the resident nay-sayer on this product, but what’s the point of labouring with these IEMS when for another £23 you can buy the immeasurably better Klipsch X10i ?

JohnnieP3's picture

Sorry to hear you're having a tough time with these. I got a set of Comply ear tips and they seemed to have helped me with seal and comfort. As a last resort, perhaps you could try a set for $13.75 and see if they make a difference for you. If not, unload the RSA's and get your X10i's. It seems like we all hear different things in audio products , and if these don't work for you then "it is what it is"!

Unfortunately for me, the sickness continues as I'm already thinking about the Shure SE535's. Good luck!

JacktheMac's picture

Hi Johnnie

See my previous posts for the full story. I got rid of the RSAs and now live in bliss with my X10is.

I’m lusting after some Blu Mo-Fi’s – but am waiting for a review on this site !

Jack

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