The Danish headphone specialist AIAIAI is adding the TMA-2 HD and HD Wireless models to its TMA-2 headphone series.
The headphones , which are popular with many DJs and producers, can be purchased as pre-configured devices and, thanks to their modular structure, can be individually modified by exchanging all components.
The two TMA-2-HD models are currently the most expensive complete versions; the TMA-2 HD, and TMA-2 HD Wireless. I had the top model TMA-2 HD Wireless sent to me and subjected it to a detailed practical test.
The AIAIAI TMA-2 HD Wireless is designed as closed over-ear headphones that can be used wirelessly via Bluetooth or via cable. The weight of the AIAIAI device including headband, driver and ear pads, but without cables, is 225 grams. The well-padded headband houses all controls and components for the radio connection and is provided with cables for connecting the drivers.
The driver capsules can be easily tilted to the side after mounting on the headband, they cannot be rotated or folded. The scope of delivery of the TMA-2 HD Wireless includes a 1.5 m long, rigid cable with a 3.5 mm mini jack plug, which can be converted into a 6.3 mm jack plug using a screw adapter.
The AIAIAI TMA-2 HD Wireless package contains the following components:
- Headphone hanger: H05
- Driver: S05
- Ear pads: E08
- Cable: C15
As with the other TMA-2-HD models, all components of the HD Wireless can also be exchanged or added. Since the wireless technology is located in the headphone hanger, this function can still be used when using alternative drivers – great!
An overview of the available components can be found in the manufacturer’s website configurator. All drivers, ear pads, headphone hangers and cables are listed here, including their specific parameters.
In this way, all parts can be exchanged in the event of damage or alternative parts can be purchased if different application scenarios are planned.
… which has to be put together by the user
The processing of the AIAIAI TMA-2 HD Wireless knows how to please. All parts included in the scope of delivery appear robust and of high quality. The headband is equipped with a thick, soft pad and has rounded edges.
The Alcantara Super ear cushions are super soft and comfortable to wear, their filling is made of memory foam. The individual components of the headphones can be assembled and disassembled without tools, as everything is only plugged in or has to be pushed on.
The enclosed S05 drivers have a frequency range of 20 to 20,000 Hz
The AIAIAI TMA-2 HD Wireless is delivered with S05 drivers, which the manufacturer has given the additional designation “detailed”. The speakers are made of bio-cellulose, a “natural” material which, due to its nature, should ensure a tidy, transparent sound.
The manufacturer promises detailed highs, emphasized mids, greater dynamics and an overall more natural sound. The drivers have a diameter of 40 mm and a frequency range of 20 to 20,000 Hz. The impedance is 32 ohms and the sound pressure is 113 dB.
The H05 headband transmits wirelessly via Bluetooth 4.2 and is equipped with the codecs SBC, AAC, aptX and aptX HD. The latter allows the transmission of Hi-Res audio with 24 bits. The radio range is 10 m, the integrated battery has a capacity of 360 mAh, which should allow an operating time of 16 hours.
The charging process takes place via the included USB-C cable and takes two hours. At the end of the headband there is also a microphone that can be used for phone calls and has a frequency range of 300 Hz to 5 kHz.
The manufacturer’s information sounds very promising, let’s see what the practical check says.
AIAIAI delivers the TMA-2 HD Wireless as a kit. In the chic dark gray packaging, all components are shrink-wrapped in bags on which the product names and technical data can be found. Once you have unpacked all parts, you can assemble; small package inserts will help if you have any questions. Assembling it isn’t particularly difficult, I think everyone should be able to do that.
The C15 cable included in the scope of delivery is rigid, 1.5 m long and has a screw adapter so that it can be connected to the common 3.5 mm or 6.3 mm sockets. The cable can be installed either on the left or right auricle. In my opinion, the length of the cable is not sufficient for DJ purposes outside of your own four walls, here you should use an extension or use the spiral cable C02 from AIAIAI, which offers a radius of up to 3.2 m.
However, the length of the cable is sufficient for using the headphones in the studio, on the move or for listening to new promos. Alternatively, you can also use the wireless Bluetooth function of the headphones for these purposes, which is not suitable for hanging up due to the excessive latency.
… and the headband are connected to each other with a cable
The TMA-2 HD Wireless with its 225 g is certainly not one of the lightweights among headphones, but thanks to the super soft Alcantara ear cushions and thickly padded headband, it is very comfortable to wear even over a longer period of time. There are no turning or folding functions for the auricle, only stepped height adjustments.
For one-sided listening, you have to turn the headphones and position them on the head a little bit, I can handle them well. The Alcantara ear cushions can be exchanged for microfiber or PU leather alternatives and there are also various models for the headband with PU foam, PU leather or microfiber as well as with and without Bluetooth function.
… and feel very comfortable.
To assess the sound, I first connected the TMA-2 HD Wireless to my mixer by cable and listened to songs from different genres. The headphones have a clear bass boost, but this does not really have a negative effect on DJ use. The reproduction of the mids and highs and thus the reproduction of vocals, leads, etc. are somewhat covered by the raised bass. The overall sound is therefore less transparent than for example with a Sennheiser HD 25 or Technics RP-DJ1210. The shielding of the TMA-2 HD Wireless is good and allows concentrated work in the DJ booth.
The headband of the TMA-2 HD Wireless is equipped with a control LED and three buttons that are used to switch on the Bluetooth function, to activate pairing, to control music and to control the telephone. Unfortunately, the manufacturer did not label the buttons, which means that you are forced to consult the instructions, at least in the initial phase. In my test with a MacBook Pro, iPad and Huawei smartphone, pairing took place without any problems and the wireless connection was largely stable, apart from non-reproducible sporadic dropouts.
The Bluetooth function is controlled by three unlabeled buttons on the headband
The supplied headband is equipped with Bluetooth 4.2 and supports the compression codecs SBC, AAC, AptX and AptX HD, so that it should be possible to establish a connection with all current (receiver) devices. My test devices used the codecs AAC (iPad), aptX (Mac) and aptX HD (Huawei), each of which offers different bandwidths, sampling rates and sampling depths.
AAC and aptX work with 16 bit and 48 kHz, aptX HD with 24 bit and 48 kHz. In order to be able to hear the differences between the codecs, you have to use uncompressed wav files or songs from CD. Little or no differences can be found in MP3 files from online shops or songs from streaming providers. I think the sound offered via Bluetooth is quite decent and always sufficient if you only want to select songs in terms of content for mix preparations.
The AIAIAI TMA-2 HD Wireless is a solid, well-made headphone that can be used wirelessly or wired. The design of the device is elegant and despite its not particularly low weight, it can be worn comfortably for a long period of time.
The tonal focus on the bass range will certainly not please every user, especially since it comes at the expense of a transparent overall sound.
However, since the modular concept of the TMA-2 series also applies to this model, the drivers can be replaced by technically differently coordinated alternatives.
The AIAIAI TMA-2 HD Wireless is offered for an ambitious $350, which in my opinion is a bit high, as there are models in this price range that are equipped with Bluetooth 5.0, noise-canceling, additional codecs and longer battery life.
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