March 27, 2017

Numerous people are confused about the best earphone that they can get in the under Rs. 4000 price bracket. RHA, the premium Scottish brand has never ceased to amaze us with it a consistent presentation of stunning in-ears. Well-known for offering a 3-year warranty, the brand's in-ears are engineered to last. Coming to SoundMAGIC, the brand has grown in length. From merely testing waters, it has gone on to build a strong reputation among budget restrained audio enthusiasts.

Today, we have two offerings that come from these two brands. The S500 U from RHA and the E80C from SoundMAGIC. The in-ears come with their own share of flaws and strengths.

Here is a detailed comparison between the two in-ears.


CUTTING THE LONG STORY SHORT

"The RHA S500 U are sturdily constructed in-ears that sound brilliantly good. An entry level earphone from the premium Scotish brand, the plethora of accessories make this pair a great value for money.

The SoundMAGIC E80C have an impressive design. With great tonal accuracy, they also offer a super low frequency responce.

-Raghav Somani

RHA S500 U


Headphone-Zone-rha-S500 U
RHA SOUND SIGNATURE WITH A STURDY METAL BUILD
SOUNDMAGIC E80C


Headphone Zone-SoundMAGIC-E80C
TRANSCULENT EAR PIECES WITH DETACHABLE CABLES

 


DESIGN: RHA S500 U vs SoundMAGIC E80C

Headphone-Zone-RHA-S500 U
Headphone-Zone-SoundMAGIC-E80C

It goes without saying, the RHA S500 U are the most well built and sophisticated looking in-ears that we have come across in this price bracket. Although devoid of RHA's aerophonic design, these classy in-ears have a neat and clean looking body. Like most RHA earphones, the S500 U is elegantly styled in a brushed metallic aluminium design. The all aluminium enclosure feels sturdy and is constructed to last!

Unlike most earphones in this price range, the S500 U comes with an unconventional cable that is employed in premium earphones. The cable is a quality one with part of it in clothed fabric and the remaining in high-quality TPE polymer. RHA's specifically engineered Remote is now Universal. Both Android and iOS users can now easily use the one-button remote to take and end calls, play and pause tracks and access their digital assistant seamlessly. This also aids in keeping cable noise down while having a long lasting unit at the same time. In all honesty, this is the finest cable in this price segment.

The overall presentation of the earphone by RHA is striking and we are very impressed. The brand, like always, aims for perfection with these in-ears.

When it comes to warranty, the RHA S500 U comes with a 3-year warranty, testimony to the trust RHA has on its products.
S500 U'S HIGH-QUALITY AND SOPHISTICATED RHA DESIGN OR THE E80C'S DETACHABLE CABLES?

SoundMAGIC, the Chinese audio company has been winning the approval of headphone enthusiasts the world over, not just for great sounding in-ears, but for bringing much more in a budget. The newly launched SoundMAGIC E80C is a revolutionary in-ear that rides on the success of the brand's award-winning in-ears.

The E80C is small and light with an understated design. Meticulously engineered, these in-ears are build to last. Its distinctive look is easily distinguishable from the endless crowd of in-earphones in this price range. The E80C does not stray too far away from its siblings in terms of physical appearance. With little tweaks here and there, SoundMAGIC has perfected its design.

The all metal construction is a rarity at this price point. A small rubber material takes up the entire end of the earbuds, lending it more durability. SoundMAGIC has never failed to impress with the packaging and presentation of their products, and more importantly with the sheer number of bundled accessories.

Although thin, the cable is coated in braid textured material and is robust. This also helps the cable from getting entangled or twisted. The braided cable along with the aluminium housing is a quality product.


Coming to the warranty offered for the E80C, unlike RHA, SoundMagic offers a basic 1-year warranty.


USABILITY: RHA S500 vs SoundMAGIC E80C

Headphone-Zone-rha-S500 U
Headphone-Zone-SoundMAGIC-E80C

The RHA S500 U comes in an aerospace grade aluminium construction and we did expect these to be a little heavy on the ear canals. However, you will be surprised that the aluminium body has no influence on the weight of these earphones. It has an ultra-lightweight structure and you can jam with these for hours, without feeling strain or fatigue. The fit is excellent and it's truly as if RHA has scanned your ear canals to design earphones that just slide in.

Perhaps the best part of the RHA S500 U is that it comes packed with various pairs of ear tips which further aids in achieving a perfect fit and good noise isolation. The in-line Universal mic and remote lets you answer calls and control your music volume.

ULTRA-LIGHTWEIGHT STRUCTURE VS AN OVER THE EAR DESIGN ?

SoundMAGIC has ensured that the E80C renders a good comfortable wearing experience. The fit is extremely snug while achieving a tight seal, thereby leading to a superior noise isolation. This is further elevated with the 7 pairs of silicone tips and a bunch of Comply Foam tips that come packed with the earphones. Obtaining the perfect fit is only a matter of trial and error.

The best part is, you can wear them for hours without straining your ears. Owing to their thoughtful design and a relatively small form factor, the E80C are extremely comfortable even for continuous hours. The braided cables are designed to keep cable noise to a bare minimum, and it works!

Just like the RHA S500 U, the E80C too comes with an inline, but a 3-button mic and remote that lets you control music, take and end calls on-the-go.

Moreover, unlike its predecessors, the SoundMAGIC E80C is compatible will all smartphones.


SOUND: RHA S500 vs SoundMAGIC E80C

Headphone-Zone-rha-S500-U
Headphone-Zone-SoundMAGIC-E80C

The S500 U's sound signature can be described as very fun and bright sounding.

The bass is less but more of treble forward sound, being prominent at even very high volumes. Mostly because the highs are another shining aspect of the S500 U. The S500 U sculpts the higher frequencies quite a bit, so there's a decent sense of balance between the lows and highs.

However, the mids aren't as refined and detailed as we would like. And overall, it is not as accurate as the latter. The sound signature is neutral and flat, but is still well suited to rock and melodic tracks.

Having said that, these are probably the best in their class for casual listeners and music enthusiasts.
BEST IN CASUAL LISTENING VS FLAT AUDIO RESPONSE?

The E80C are a pinnacle of balanced tonality. Extremely clear, everything comes out loud and crisp. The edgy detail has the ability to keep you hooked on for hours.

The soundstage is very wide and the fine details are reproduced with the overall audio being delightful to the ears. The notes and the instruments come out well defined.

The focus on extracting detail is evident, but at times extreme highs might sound a tad sibilant. The E80C also lacks power and brightness with certain genres. The bass is best driven and beautifully resonates with full life. Perfectly enjoyable, we love the flow in which this piece delivers music.

To maximise output quality, it is recommended to use a high-quality audio output device and lossless audio files.


Summary


RHA S500 U

  • Sturdy Metal Build
  • Sculpted & Bright Highs
  • Inline universal Mic + Remote
  • Plethora of Accessories
  • 3 Years Warranty
SoundMAGIC E80C

  • SoundMAGIC Unique Design
  • Open and Clean Audio Presentation
  • 3-Button Inline Remote & Mic
  • 7 Pairs of Silicone Ear-tips and 3 Pairs Comply Foam tips
  • 1 Year Warranty

Conclusion


RHA S500 is known for its design and the vast range of accessories that it comes along with, making these a true winner. The 3-year warranty is the cherry on the cake.

The SoundMAGIC E80C delivers edgy and airy audio, but we would appreciate a brighter punch with more energy.

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What is going to be your pick? Let us know in the comments section below.

 


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