RHA is one in every of many headphone producers providing a centered true wi-fi earbuds proposition that consists of 1 premium pair with lively noise-cancelling and a extra reasonably priced pair with out it.
The corporate’s naming selections go away guests to its web site in little question as to which is which in its arsenal. The RHA TrueControl ANC we now have on check right here sit above the RHA TrueConnect 2, justifying their flagship standing with not solely noise-cancellation but in addition Bluetooth 5.zero with aptX connectivity, devoted app help and an IPX4-rated stage of water and sweat resistance meaning they need to survive water splashes.
The TrueControl ANC’s battery lifetime of 20 hours – 5 hours from the buds, plus 15 hours from the charging case – isn’t superior to its sibling, although. That isn’t maybe wholly stunning contemplating noise cancellation is reasonably battery-draining, however it’s nonetheless considerably disappointing in mild of the competitors. Noise-cancelling rivals, such because the Apple AirPods Pro, Sony WF-1000XM3 and Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless 2, all declare 24 hours or extra.
We’re happy to see quick charging help (14 minutes gives an hour of playback) in addition to broad wi-fi charging compatibility on the menu. As is typical, a wi-fi charger isn’t offered, however out of the field the earbuds’ charging case might be replenished by way of the equipped USB-C cable.
RHA TrueControl ANC tech specs
Bluetooth model 5.zero with aptX
Battery life 20 hours (5 hours buds + 15 hours case)
Weight 8g (every)
The charging case reminds us of our time with the unique RHA TrueConnect earbuds, which featured an analogous case that we referred to as “neat, however considerably fiddly”. The aluminium case twists open to disclose the earbuds securely embedded into deep magnetic divots, however the slot solely opens by a few finger-widths, and so it is not all the time straightforward to pluck them out.
That stated, there are a swathe of rival designs available on the market that fluctuate vastly in high quality, and this makes us recognize the uncommon premium high quality of the TrueControl ANC case’s strong construct. It feels made to final and hardy sufficient to outlive a tumble out of a hand, bag or pocket.
The earbuds have an identical air of high quality about them too. They appear and feel properly completed, and we’ve no complaints with the responsive round touchpad, which within the devoted RHA Join app might be set to skip tracks, alter quantity and cycle via noise-cancelling modes (on, off or ‘ambient’) with swipe ahead/backward or tapping motions.
The app can be the place you’ll be able to alter EQ, see battery ranges and activate put on detection options – ‘auto-pause’ pauses music when an earbud is eliminated out of your ear, whereas ‘auto-play’ resumes play when it’s reinserted. Each work as promised throughout our check.
The buds be a part of the likes of the Sony WF-1000XM3 as a few of the bulkiest earbud designs on the market, however that isn’t a cause to keep away from them – in truth, they’re some of the snug and secure-fitting we’ve come throughout.
They’re straightforward to lock in place with out a lot pressure or twisting, partially due to a notch that simply nestles into your ears. And a number of sizes of silicone and reminiscence foam ideas guarantee there’s one thing for everybody.
When in place, the TrueControl ANC make your ears really feel a bit full – you gained’t find yourself forgetting they’re in – however regardless of the scale of the earbud housings they really feel comparatively light-weight. Not even a gentle try at headbanging throughout Judas Priest’s Hell Patrol manages to dislodge them.
The RHA’s sonic character performs into the palms of such a observe: it’s massive and full, heat and clean, with an plentiful low-end and wealthy mids which can be capable of get caught into the meaty electrical riffs and double-kick drumming. There’s a good quantity of element within the combine, too.
Change the noise-cancelling on and it doesn’t have an effect on the sonics as a lot as we’ve heard with another earbuds – all in all, it’s fairly satisfying. Their finest efforts to cut back background TV noise and on a regular basis highway site visitors are laudable, though as is to be anticipated from this sort of design they gained’t cloak you in isolation to the extent that heavy site visitors or engine noise is totally muted. You’re nonetheless more likely to be disturbed when taking part in at low quantity or mellow instrumental tracks, too.
The TrueControl ANC’s ‘ambient’ mode works adequately, amplifying your environment so you’ll be able to conveniently hear conversations or bulletins with out having to take away the buds out of your ears.
Our predominant subject with these RHAs is their lack of ability to ship the extra mature elements of sound in addition to the best-in-class competitors can. In contrast with the marginally extra reasonably priced Sony WF-1000XM3, the TrueControl ANC lack the dynamic punch and rhythmic prowess to actually have interaction you in something significantly musical. Dynamically, they’re pretty restrained, and the very fact their wealthy stability doesn’t vastly favour treble doesn’t assist them sound any much less subdued both.
What treble there’s lacks refinement, too, and that is highlighted once we play Soul Push’s Good Man. Whereas the grooves underpinning the observe sound upbeat, crisp and open via the Sonys, the RHA’s rendition isn’t as spirited and musically cohesive and is much less fascinating to take heed to.
The RHA TrueControl ANC supply a snug hear – one that may be simply endured for hours with out it grating. Nevertheless, it’s not all that compelling, particularly at decrease volumes the place all of them too simply accept providing background listening.
Regardless of their neat, snug earbud design and respectable noise-cancelling, they should supply extra within the sound division at this premium value to benefit a spot on individuals’s shortlists.
Learn our Sony WF-1000XM3 review