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REVIEW: House of Marley Exodus Headphones – Sustainable Stylish Sound

Sustainability-focused audio brand House of Marley has broken the mould again with its latest flagship headphones: Exodus, available now for $299.95.

For every headphone or speaker set sold by the brand, a tree is planted.

But does sustainability come at the cost of style or performance?

DESIGN

All the wood used by the company in their products, including this latest flagship, is FSC-certified.

Couple that with the recycled aluminium components that set the headphones apart in a crowd.

The large wooden earcups of the Exodus headphones feature an embossed House of Marley logo and are covered with an uber soft leatherette-covered foam cushioning.

The earcups are so large they easily surround my little ears and are deep enough to ensure they don’t rub against your ear.

Each earcup features button controls, on the left you’ll find the power button, LED indicators, and USB charge port, and on the right, you’ll find the volume and playback controls and 3.5mm input.

The headphones are simply designed with easily modified metal pole adjusters on either side.

At first, I thought they wouldn’t stay in place, however, they stayed secure for hours at a time.

Despite their large and chunky design, the Exodus’ earcups can rotate 90 degrees and fold inward to easily pack away in your handbag or carry-on.

PERFORMANCE

Housed in each ear cup is a 50mm dynamic driver, which pumps out bass-heavy sound, sometimes at the expense of clarity.

These headphones are not noise-cancelling – although a noise-cancelling version is on the horizon.

So, expect to hear other commuters’ conversations on a busy commute and traffic noises.

Its controls are easy to locate and use while on the move.

The only qualm I had with the headphones was the microphone which I believe suffers from proximity issues.

More often than not my voice wasn’t able to be heard on the other line when using the headphones without the 3.5mm detachable cable. No issues were found with the in-line mic even outdoors walking around.

Besides the aesthetics, bass, and comfort, the best thing about these headphones was battery life.

House of Marley claims the headphones provide up to 30 hours of battery life and I believe that.

In a week’s worth of commutes to work and five-hour flights, the battery held up while comfortable enough to wear the whole time.

The headphones can reach a full charge from empty in a couple of hours via the included USB-C cable which features a matching braided cable to the AUX cable and the headphones.

I had zero issues pairing the headphones with my smartphone.

The pairing process is easy enough, simply hold down both the volume buttons for two seconds to activate pairing mode and select “Exodus” on your phone’s Bluetooth menu.

The only thing that bothered me was the rather quiet “beep” when the phone had successfully paired.

I have previously used House of Marley’s Buffalo Soldier BT headphones which had a much louder connecting beep and oftentimes I missed the pairing noise with the Exodus. Which is more of an annoyance than an actual performance issue.

VALUE

Overall, I found them an attractive pair of headphones that clearly display both your love of bass-heavy music and trees.

With the metal and FSC-certified wooden accents, they feel durable. I can see these headphones lasting many trips

Ultimately, $299.95 is quite steep for a pair of non-noise-cancelling headphones.

However, these well-constructed headphones will definitely last the distance.

If you’re looking for a headset that retains the same sustainability focus with some more privacy, you may want to wait for the noise cancelling version set to hit the market by the end of 2019.

The House of Marley headphones is available now from the House of Marley website and select retailers for $299.95 RRP.

DESIGN: 8/10

PERFORMANCE: 7/10

VALUE: 7/10

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