I’m not one of those guys. I’m no Marco Arment, who I’m betting can tell you what Chinese factory a headphone was manufactured in based on the treble sound alone. All I care about is a decent set of speakers that fit my ears and allow me to listen in comfort. In fact, I’ve even been generally OK with most of the comes-with models that have shipped with every iDevice I’ve bought. That said, I have tried and owned some more expensive models and can at least tell that they are better in every conceivable way than the less expensive alternatives. So, there’s that.

That said, I was recently sent a pair of MA450i Noise Isolating Earphones to try out. I’ve been using them for a couple of weeks now in all sorts of conditions and listening to both music, voice and video. They have performed admirably in all situations. They are very comfortable in ear. In fact, I often forget they are there. They sound great! Far better than their fifty dollar price point would give away. I would put them on par with other, more expensive,“Marco Approved” models I have owned.

They have been especially good for running. Most in ear models I have owned start falling out as soon as I start to sweat a bit. These stay put. This might be because they include six sets of interchangeable ear buds to ensure there is a set to fit just about any ear. The default ones fit me perfectly out of the box though.

The cord is cloth wrapped and, therefore, less prone to tangle (and fairly easy to untangle when it does). The in-line remote and mic do the job. The jack itself maintains a solid connection. There all help to lend a more professional and expensive feel to the overall build quality.

These are keepers for sure. They are an Apple Store exclusive right now. Though, you can find their non-iDevice-remote laden cousin, the MA 350, at Amazon for ten dollars less.

Either way, it’s a square deal.

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