House of Marley has grown a ton over the past few years, to the point where it’s now a high-end, top-tier headphone brand. All that, and the headphones are built using sustainably-sourced materials. The company’s latest headphones are the House of Marley Exodus headphones, featuring an over-ear design, beautiful wooden exterior, and more.
The fact that the House of Marley Exodus headphones are sustainably built is awesome — but do they sacrifice audio quality and comfort to do so? We put the House of Marley Exodus headphones to the test to find out.
The first thing you’ll notice about these headphones is their design, and they’re excellent-looking cans. The headphones are built with a classy wooden exterior, along with a nice stainless steel frame and natural leather padding on the ear cups and under the headband. The only weird thing about them is their shape, which is slightly less rounded than other headphones, and a little more angled. That shape aside, the headphones look beautiful.
On the right ear cup, you’ll find a power button and a USB-C charging port. We’re glad House of Marley went with USB-C here — it’s 2019, and all new headphones should charge through USB-C, and not MicroUSB. On the right ear cup, you’ll get a volume rocker and a central control button, along with an aux port for wired use.
In the box, apart from the headphones themselves, you’ll find a nice carry bag, a USB-C charging cable, and an aux cable with a controller remote. It’s a nice selection of accessories, and pretty much all you’ll need for day-to-day use.
The House of Marley Exodus headphones feature nice, premium materials and plenty of padding, and that helps make for a generally comfortable fit. That said, the slightly different shape does have an impact — we found that the ear cups didn’t totally rest squarely on the ears, and while it’s not a huge deal, it is something to get used to.
Still, despite that, once you do get used to the fit, you’ll really enjoy wearing the headphones. After long listening periods, you might experience some discomfort on the top of your head, but that’s to be expected from over-ear headphones.
The House of Marley Exodus headphones may be built with sustainably-sourced materials, but does House of Marley sacrifice on sound quality? Thankfully, no — the Exodus headphones sound pretty good. That said there are a few quirks to keep in mind.
Let’s start with the bass, which is thick, heavy, and powerful. Kick drums punch easily through a mix, while bass guitars and synths, which might otherwise take a backseat, are front-and-center here.
The mid range isn’t perfectly tuned, but it’s not terrible. There’s a ton of low mid response, which not only creates a warm sound, but also verges on muddiness. The high mids are there enough to make for good vocal presence, but they’re a little overshadowed by the low mids.
The highs sound great — but there’s nowhere near enough of them. The fact is that these are bass-heavy headphones, and while the high frequencies that are there sound good when they can make it through the mix, when they can’t the mix can sound a little dulled.
Still, for bass fans, the House of Marley Exodus headphones have a lot going for them.
The Exodus headphones connect to your listening device through an unspecified version of Bluetooth, and you’ll get a listening range of 10 meters, or 33 feet. We found that the headphones were generally able to retain a good connection without skips or jumps.
The headphones also offer a battery life of a 30 hours, which is pretty good. There are headphones with a longer batter life, to be sure, but 30 hours is a solid amount, and should be more than enough for most.
The House of Marley Exodus headphones have a lot going for them. They’re beautifully-designed and relatively comfortable, and while the frequency response isn’t everything we would have wanted, it’s still pretty great for the bass-lovers out there. Of course, there’s also the fact that the headphones are built with sustainably-sourced materials — which is always a bonus.
But are these the best wireless headphones in their price range? Well, that depends. If you like the design and a bass-heavy sound response, then these are great headphones, but if you prefer a flatter frequency response and don’t care too much about the wooden design, then something like the Audio Technica ATH-WS990BT might be a better option for you.
Still, because of their great design and comfortable fit, we’re awarding the House of Marley Exodus headphones the Headphone Review Bronze Medal.