Pros: Durable metal earpieces, comfortable fit, deep bass, good included accessories
Cons: Tangly cables, lacks a little clarity, driver flex
I'd like to think RHA for sending me these earphones for review.
Along with the summary below, I have posted a Youtube video review of the MA450i. If you like the video, check out my channel for more reviews :)
The MA450i has an interesting build, with a reverse horn / funnel shape. This is actually the opposite of a horn speaker design in principle, and means that the MA350 fits very comfortably in the ear. The aluminium in the earpieces is very welcome and makes the earphone feel quite durable, but the fabric wrapped cable is tangly and microphonic. Luckily the MA350's are well suited for over-ear use. The strain reliefs seem a little flimsy. On both the RHA 350 and RHA 450i I experienced quite a large degree of driver flex which makes me nervous. The included selection of tips is very generous and it should be possible for most people to get a good fit.
The MA450i is a very bassy earphone but the peak in the highs prevents it from sounding too congested or muddy. Bass is well rounded, goes very deep and is very visceral. The highs are generally soft except for a peak that lends energy to vocals. Overall definition is quite good, though they are not the fastest sounding earphones. They have an intimate soundstage but good instrument placement within that stage.
Because of the comfort of the earphones and the engaging sound, I think these make a good everyday pair of earphones - though perhaps they are not suited for critical listening. You definitely must like your bass to like these earphones, but they are a great little gems for the price. Driver flex is my biggest worry about these earphones, otherwise I would be giving these 4 stars.