If you have read any of my audio product reviews, you will know that I am not a huge fan of in-ear headphones. More than just the tightÂ fit most earphones need to stay in your ears, I find that having the speaker so close to your ear is a recipe for trouble, often leaving my ears sore and sometimes giving meÂ a headache.Â However, theÂ Denon Music Maniac AH-C50MA In-Ear Headphones have changed my perspective on in-ear headphones, from their comfy ear buds to the very balanced sound to the very affordable $59.95 AUD/$49.99 USD, I think I’ve found the first pair of earphones that I actually like. Let’s check them out.
What’s in the box
In the box of the Denon Music Maniacs, you will get the earphones themselves and an assortment of accessories. You’ll get 3 additional sets of earbuds in different sizes, extra-small, small and large (medium is included on the earphones). You’ll also get an additional cable add-on which is required for some devices; if you need this,Â you’ll likely know by now. I’m a little disappointed that there is no method for transporting the Maniacs with you or to even keep them neat, whether it be a bag or winding tool.
Despite being named “Music Maniac”, the Maniac’s have a very un-maniacal look. Almost all black with small silver highlights on the back of the earbuds, the Maniacs are extremely reserved and simple, which is perfectly fine, because the main event of these earphones is their performance where it really matters; more on that soon.
The Maniacs have one other notable feature, which is the inline microphone and answer button. The design of the inline unit has a very small footprint which is perfect for travelling. While it’s a bit disappointing there aren’t more controls on the inline unit, I do applaud Denon on keeping it extremely small and still functional.
How does it perform
For those who aren’t aware, Denon is a brand who has been involved in premium audio products for many years, though most recently have been making inroads with their consumer audio offerings. So the Music Maniac earphones have the pedigree, but do they have actual audio performance to back it up? Absolutely.
I mentioned in the introduction that the Music Maniacs are very possibly the first earphones I’ve liked, and partly thanks to its balance. The highs and mids are very clear and the bass is not at all overbearing, though some would say nonexistent. I really liked the audio balance that the Maniacs offer; it was right for almost every genre of music I listened to, and while rock and dance listeners may want a little more bass, that’s nothing a little equalizer tweakingÂ can’t fix.
The other part that I really like about the Maniacs are the fact that the earbuds are superbly comfortable. I’m not exactly how these earphones are so different to other offerings, but I have happily used the Maniacs for hours on end without getting sore ears. The fit is just right, and doesn’t put any unnecessary pressure on your ear cavity, which for me is a huge plus
There is one more part of the Denon ecosystem which I haven’t mentioned yet. Denon has released an app that was supposedly designed to enhance the performance of the Music Maniac earphones. From my brief exploring of the app, it doesn’t do anything ground breaking; it’s useful for playlists and adjusting EQ, but that’s nothing you can’t already manage with other apps, and not that useful if you listen to music using a streaming app.
What I like about theÂ Denon Music Maniac AH-C50MA In-Ear Headphone
As I mentioned earlier, there’s a lot I like about the Music Maniac earphones. The top two things are obviously the comfort and the audio quality, which should really sell it for anybody just looking for a simple set of earphones that get the job done. That’s exactly what Denon would want for their cheapest entry in the Music Maniac category: cheap and effective. And for $59.95 AUD, that’s a small price to pay for that kind of performance.
This point is a little less tangible, but I really appreciate how simplistic and reserved the Maniacs are. While they look at crazy as their name suggests, that all creates a nice contrast with the abilities that it hides beneath.
What I don’t like about theÂ Denon Music Maniac AH-C50MA In-Ear Headphones
Despite liking the Maniacs a lot, I do have some concernsÂ about the package you get. Chief among these concerns is the fact that you don’t get a means of transporting your earphones nicely. Obviously it’s not a dealbreaker, but transporting earphones is an absolute pain without a bag or something to wrap them around to keep them untangled.
TheÂ Denon Music Maniac earphones are by far my favourite earphones ever. They’re comfortable, cheap and the audio quality is extremely good given its price. They aren’t going to blow your mind, but if you’re in the market for something simple that does the job and does it well, without breaking the bank, the Music Maniacs are for you.
If you’re interested in picking up the Denon Music Maniac earphones, make sure to check out the product page here.