Wearables

RHA aims to block out the world with true wireless ANC earphones

RHA aims to block out the worl...
RHA has contoured the TrueControl ANC earphones to fit the natural shape of the ear
RHA has contoured the TrueControl ANC earphones to fit the natural shape of the ear
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RHA has contoured the TrueControl ANC earphones to fit the natural shape of the ear
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RHA has contoured the TrueControl ANC earphones to fit the natural shape of the ear
Each earbud is reckoned good for five hours per charge, with another 15 hours available from the charging case
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Each earbud is reckoned good for five hours per charge, with another 15 hours available from the charging case
The TrueControl ANC earphones offer capacitive touch control
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The TrueControl ANC earphones offer capacitive touch control
A quick charge of 14 minutes will provide an hour of playback, a full charge takes 105 minutes
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A quick charge of 14 minutes will provide an hour of playback, a full charge takes 105 minutes
The charging case's battery can be juiced up using a Qi wireless charging pad (not supplied)
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The charging case's battery can be juiced up using a Qi wireless charging pad (not supplied)
The TrueControl ANC earphones come with seven pairs of silicone tips and three sets of Comply foam tips
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The TrueControl ANC earphones come with seven pairs of silicone tips and three sets of Comply foam tips
The TrueControl ANC earphones feature 6-mm custom drivers, a brand new sound signature, Bluetooth 5.0 with aptX and AAC support, active noise cancellation and voice clarity technology for call taking
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The TrueControl ANC earphones feature 6-mm custom drivers, a brand new sound signature, Bluetooth 5.0 with aptX and AAC support, active noise cancellation and voice clarity technology for call taking
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Glasgow's RHA launched its first true wireless earphones a little over two years ago, which were billed as "the most sophisticated true wireless earphones on the market." Now the company has cooked in some active noise cancellation for the shapely TrueControl ANC buds.

In the few years since the launch of the very first true wireless earphones, audio gear makers big and small have joined the cable-free party. Until recently, users would have had to rely on passive isolation to block out some of the hustle and bustle from the world around them, but active noise cancellation has now been crammed in.

We've long enjoyed the impressive sound quality of RHA's earphones. In fact, the company's dual-coil T20 wired in-ears are still first in line for long-haul listening while out and about. But many earphone users today want cable-free wandering and don't want to be bothered by outside noise – and RHA has responded with the TrueControl ANC.

They come with a brand new sound signature that's promised to deliver "deep and detailed audio at any volume," and RHA says that listeners can also look forward to an immersive and natural sound, even with the ANC activated.

Wireless connectivity is via Bluetooth 5.0 with support for aptX and AAC codecs, so dropouts should be infrequent and audio quality should be pretty good too, though we'd have to try them out ourselves before we can comment on the audio performance or ANC capabilities. Users can adjust EQ via a companion iOS/Android mobile app for a more personalized listening experience, and the app can also be used to customize the button controls, switch languages, update firmware and help locate misplaced earphones.

The TrueControl ANC earphones offer capacitive touch control
The TrueControl ANC earphones offer capacitive touch control

If users do need to let in ambient sounds – to chat to friends without unplugging or listen out for announcements at the transport hub – they can tap into the fully adjustable ambient mode. And if you just want to ask a colleague a quick question without taking the earphones out, you can hold the touch-sensitive surface on the outer housing of the left earbud and the audio will pause and switch to full ambient mode, with playback resumed and ANC reactivated when released. Or you can just remove an earbud, and the audio will auto pause.

The earphones sport contoured, ergonomic housing designed to fit the natural shape of the ear, and come supplied with seven pairs of silicone tips and three sets of Comply foam tips to ensure a secure fit. They're IPX4 sweatproof and water resistant as well, so they'll survive workouts at the gym or being caught in a sudden downpour.

Plugged into your ears, the TrueControl ANC earphones are reckoned good for five hours per charge with ANC engaged. The included charging case offers a further 15 hours, and once its battery is low, it can be topped up via USB-C or with a QI wireless charging pad (not supplied).

Qualcomm's cVc technology optimizes voice quality during calls, and the earphones are compatible with digital assistants on paired smartphones.

The TrueControl ANC true wireless earphones go up for pre-order from today for US$299.95, with full availability from December 11 in the US. This price point puts them above Apple's AirPods Pro, Sony's WF-1000XM3 and the Bose QC Earbuds, though those who pre-order are eligible for an early-adopter discount.

Product page: RHA TrueControl ANC

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1 comment
JeffK
The sense of hearing is the most important from a survival standpoint. It can alert us to potential dangers approaching from the areas not covered by our eyes. It helped our earliest ancestors survive the dangers of the prehistoric world and is arguably even more important in the crowded urban environments a majority of modern humans gravitate to. Yet more and more inhabitants of the asphalt jungle are choosing to isolate themselves from the audio signatures of their environment and the early warnings those audio signatures can carry. I can imagine a future of driverless cars in the streets and effectively driverless bio-mobiles on the sidewalks and crosswalks and it doesn't seem that there will be a happy ending to the story.