For the product manager, how to make a product have a “character” is a key question to be considered on the way to advancement.
In the headphones industry, there are not a few products with personality. For example, the fitear togo 334, which I have been exposed to, is very suitable for expressing sweet and beautiful voices; Sennheiser ie800 is the main instrumental analysis power, and the performance of large dynamic classical music is meticulous. Shure se846’s grasp of pop music is impressive.
However, the aforementioned headphones are all wired headphones. I recently got a wireless headphones. Its personality is more obvious from the outside to the inside. It is the fourth generation of Marshall Major (hereinafter referred to as Marshall Major IV).
When it comes to rock music, I think of Marshall the first time. Marshall, with a long history of rock and roll, seems to have carved the rock gene into his soul. The relatively low-priced Major series headphones are the most cost-effective choice for rock fans to experience Marshall.
Because of this, the Major series of headphones have become Marshall’s best-selling product line. Two years after the previous generation was released, Marshall launched the fourth generation Major headphones.
So how does this headphones perform? Is it worth buying? We give comprehensive purchase recommendations based on several dimensions that consumers are more concerned about when buying wireless headphones:
How is the sound quality? Is it comfortable to wear? Does it look good? Is the operation convenient? Is it leaking? Battery life? Is it durable?
| Sound quality: born to rock
For the earphone evaluation, I actually resist it. Because the sound quality that everyone cares most about is very subjective and has strong personal preferences.
In order to evaluate its sound quality as objectively and comprehensively as possible, I recruited five friends to form a “auditing team.” Among them, two don’t know much about headphones, so they can “listen to a sound”; one belongs to a “junior audiophile” user who has a certain pursuit of sound quality; and two belong to “audiophile” who are more demanding on sound quality.
They experienced Marshall Major IV separately, which lasted from ten minutes to one hour. The following are their “remarks”:
User A: Use AirPods 2 for daily listening to songs.
I can’t compare the sound quality. It may be because of the headphones, which feels more immersive than AirPods 2. And because I know that the brand is Marshall, I subconsciously think it must be good. If the perfect score is 10, I will score 8 points, and 2 points will be deducted because the head-mounted style will suppress the hairstyle.
User B: Use Huawei FreeBuds for daily listening to songs.
It feels good, with a sense of rhythm. Others are not easy to say, I feel that the effect of heavy bass is very good, it should be very suitable for listening to some more cheerful and rhythmic songs. If the full score is 10, I will give it 7 because the headphones has a bit of a clip.
User C: Use AirPods and Sony MDR-1ADAC for daily listening to songs.
I tried two songs, one “Ferry” and one rock-style “sweet child o’mine”, and I obviously felt that it performed better when listening to rock music.
When listening to “Ferry”, the drum sound was a bit dry and the sinking feeling was not enough. The low frequency performance can only be passed. The sound field feels so-so, with human voices and instruments all around me, a bit crowded. When listening to rock music, I feel better. I feel that it works harder in the middle and high frequencies, and there will be no distortion when the electric guitar is strummed. The realism is very strong.
User D: Use Shure se846 for daily listening to songs.
Let me talk about the advantages first. First of all, the instrumental analysis is pretty good, the high frequencies are brighter, the timbre of the electric guitar is restored quite well, and the strumming force is very accurate. The intermediate frequency is relatively concentrated and solid, and it is not bad for the tooth tone control of pop music.
Let’s talk about the shortcomings. First of all, the low frequency extension performance is average. Although the amount is relatively large, it does not have a very real feeling; the mid frequency is solid, but the thickness is average, and the human voice sounds a bit dry; the high frequency is bright, but the ductility is not particularly good. The sound field is not open. In addition, this headphones is dynamic and needs to be run-in for a period of time, and the sense of hearing may improve after the run-in is completed.
User E: Use Sony XBA-Z5, Sony MDR-Z7M2 for daily listening to songs
Let’s talk about the low frequency first. Although there is a certain amount of low frequency extension, the performance of Major 4 here will be slightly unpredictable. Sometimes, the voice of Marshall Major IV will completely sink, and it will sound a little dull at this time. But in fact, it’s okay to get used to it. If it is paired with powerful drums, it is actually quite good for friends who like this sound to listen to rock.
But if there is no such low-frequency effect, the sound of Marshall Major IV will appear a little bit dry, and the details of the sound will be a little rough if you listen carefully.
The performance of the vocals is pretty good. As a series also called “monitoring” under Marshall, the vocals of Marshall Major IV are quite outstanding, with acceptable clarity, and will not be completely embedded in the background, and the sound position is also appropriate. But occasionally, there is still a feeling of being a little closer to the background, and sometimes there is a clear sense of dryness.
Judging by the sense of hearing, for rock fans, the sound of Marshall Major IV can fully meet your entry needs. The drums are full and flexible, and the impact of listening to rock is also good. Listening to rock is perfect.
But for those who are accustomed to the trend, Marshall Major IV still has a lot of room for improvement in details. However, this is not the category for Major 4. After all, the Major 4 of the Marshall brand is hung, in fact, only the texture of rock and roll is enough.
From the testimonials of these five users, a clearer conclusion can be drawn.
From the perspective of your sensitivity to sound quality, if you are a “music rookie” or do not understand the testimonials of user D and user E above, then this headphones is enough to make you listen well without worrying about its sound quality. Does it satisfy you.
But if you have a certain pursuit of sound quality, and can hear and tell the difference between different earphones, then the sound quality of this earphone is very individual. Simply put, if you often listen to rock, it is the most worthy earphone in the 1000RMB camp. If you often listen to popular or other types of music, then it may not meet your expectations.
In terms of sound quality, we can actually see the character of this headphones-“born with restlessness.” In fact, no headphones is suitable for all types of songs. It is the kingly way to choose the type of music you listen to most often.
For Marshall Major IV, the radical tuning style makes it “born to rock.” Although it’s slightly weak in terms of details, it’s like you don’t care too much about singing skills when listening to rock Live. Just listen to it and it’s fine.
| Wearing comfort is average
From the picture above, you may have discovered that it is an on-ear headphones rather than a wrap-around headphones.
On-ear headphones are certainly not as comfortable as wrap-around headphones, no matter how soft the material is. But when it comes to materials, this generation of Marshall Major has a great improvement over the previous generation in materials. The leather surface in contact with the ear is much softer to the touch. The dust-proof net above the unit has also been changed from the previous generation of linen material to a soft fabric.
▲ The top is the fourth generation, and the bottom is the third generation
In terms of wearing experience, the new generation of Marshall Major is much more comfortable than the previous generation. This change is very obvious. But this is only relatively speaking, it still can not enter the first echelon in terms of comfort, especially for friends with large head circumference and glasses, this may be a challenge.
However, two female friends around me made positive comments on how it feels to wear it, although one of the girls also wears glasses. This should be due to their smaller head circumference.
However, compared to the wrapped earphones, the on-ear type is not without its advantages. In general, earphones have a better noise shielding effect, because they fit the ears closer, so they can better block outside sounds.
| Appearance: enough personality
The appearance and sense of hearing are both more subjective judgments. In terms of my personal aesthetics, the shape of Marshall Major IV is in line with my aesthetics. The design of the Founder makes it look extra vibrant.
Compared with the previous generation, the texture of the earmuffs of this generation has disappeared, and it looks simpler. In addition, the more obvious changes are the bronzing logo in the middle of the head beam, and the left and right signs at both ends of the head beam. They all changed to black uniformly, which looks stronger. But for some old Marshall fans, such changes seem to lack the charm of Marshall.
▲The upper is the fourth generation, the lower is the third generation
The leather wrap of the head beam is also more delicate than the previous generation. It can be seen that this generation is narrower, and the edges are stitched into the interior, while the previous generation is exposed to the outside and looks wider visually.
▲ The fourth generation on the left and the third generation on the right
My favorite is its golden function keys. There is only one button on the whole body, which is very simple. The classic shape and color scheme are made by Marshall, which can be said to be the finishing touch of the entire headphones.
On the whole, its shape is not “behaved”, and it can even be said to be punk. If you are a maverick or a person with a distinctive personality, then the appearance of this headphones will match you very well.
▲ The third generation on the left and the fourth generation on the right
| Complete all operations with one click
Now that this golden function key has been mentioned above, I have to mention its controllability. After all, whether the control is convenient or not is also a factor that we need to consider when buying a wireless headphones.
Like the previous generation, this golden function key still supports multi-directional adjustment. For example, click to play or pause, push left/right to switch songs, push up/down to increase or decrease the volume. Another example is to press and hold to power on/off, and press and hold to pair another device.
It can be said that this function key cleverly gathers all the commonly used functions. The learning cost is not high, and you can become familiar with these operations after a few tries.
| Better closure
I recommended the Sony MDR-1A headphones to a good friend. When I was chatting, she told me that when I went to the library to listen to songs while wearing it, people next to me would always give strange eyes inexplicably, and then I realized that the sound leakage from my headphones was too obvious.
For a headphones, whether or not it leaks is a concern for some users when purchasing.
As mentioned above, this earphone has an ear-pressing design and fits very tightly to the ear, which reduces the occurrence of sound leakage to a certain extent. I adjusted the volume on the playback side to medium. In an office with a noise level of 50dB, a colleague who was 50cm away from me said that no sound was heard at all. So the conclusion is obvious, you don’t need to worry about it leaking sound.
| 80 hours of battery life, are you afraid?
Battery life is important for wireless headphones. Head-mounted wireless headphones generally have better battery life than in-ear headphones because they are larger and can hold a larger battery.
The battery life of the third generation of Marshall Major is already very good. It is no problem to listen for 30 hours with a full battery. In this generation, this number has come to an exaggerated 80 hours.
In daily use, I used the iPhone bluetooth connection to play songs and adjusted the volume to medium. After playing for 3 hours, the battery still showed 80%.
What’s more interesting is that it also supports wireless charging. You only need to place the headphones body on the right side on the wireless charging board to charge. But for the time being, I don’t know what protocol it supports. I can successfully charge with Huawei’s wireless charging pad, but Apple’s MagSafe cannot.
In terms of wired charging, this generation finally replaced the charging port with USB-C. The 3.5mm jack next to it is for listening to music even when the battery is out. After all, a 3.5mm cable is included in the package.
I believe that in this configuration, wireless headphones can also use the illusion of wired – no longer have to worry about how long the battery will be enough for listening.
| Durability: no need to take care of
Regarding the durability of the headphones, it is impossible to give an exact answer in a short time. Refer to the Marshall Major 3 that my colleagues have used for two years, and it is still as new now. Even if he throws the headphones into his backpack every day when he commutes.
Marshall’s confidence in product quality is also reflected in another aspect, that is, there is no earphone storage box. This is not friendly enough for those who like storage.
I tried to open the earphones to both sides with my hands, and pull the left and right main bodies back and forth. Even if they were twisted into a “twist”, they could still be restored. No need to worry about quality.
In addition, the connection between the head beam and the earphone continues the folding design of the previous generation, and the earphone body can be folded under the head beam to save space in the bag. Squeeze it inward with your hands, and there will be no problem.
| Buying advice
Finally, we review the above aspects and score these dimensions with a single score of five stars.
|Dimension||Rating (out of 5 stars)|
|Convenience of operation||4|
|Sound blocking effect||5|
Regarding its price, it has not been announced as of the publication. However, referring to the price of the previous generation, Marshall Major IV should be priced around 1,000 RMB.
From a comprehensive perspective of sound quality, as a new generation of entry-level headphones under Marshall, Major 4 maintains the original sound style of Marshall. The drums show sufficient strength, thickness and flexibility, and the texture is not bad.
If you don’t have a high demand for sound quality and need long battery life wireless headphones, then it has a reason to be your first choice; if you have a certain demand for sound quality and like to listen to rock music, then it is also yours. Preferred product.
Of course, you also need to consider the issue of wearing comfort. If you meet the two conditions of “large head circumference” and “wear glasses” at the same time, then you can turn your eyes elsewhere. But if you only meet one of them, don’t worry too much about the wearing comfort of this headphones.
Overall, Marshall Major IV is unique enough, but its distinctive character may also make it fall into the category that a few people like. This coincides with the characteristics of rock music. People who like it are extremely fond of it, and those who don’t like it feel strange.