Sennheiser is a brand audiophiles can equate to high-quality music. The company makes a vast selection of different pairs of headphones to suit various needs. Music has always been a central theme to the company’s products but this year, Sennheiser went with a different tune refreshing the company’s aging category of wireless headphones – the RS series. These sets of headphones have a different focus which is the living room. It is all about delivering a more personal home theater experience without suffering from the inconvenience of wires. On the very bottom of the refreshed series is the Sennheiser RS165.
About the Sennheiser RS165
The Sennheiser RS165 is the cheapest and most compromised model of the 4 Sennheiser RS models. It can also be viewed as a successor to the Sennheiser RS160 introduced way back in 2009. It is a two-component package consisting of a rather innovative wireless transmitter and the headphones itself. The transmitter is of a pedestal type that stands upright and relies on a proprietary 2.4 GHz wireless link to transmit audio to the headphones. Setup is pretty simple as you just plug it into a power source and then use the 3.5mm cable to connect the transmitter to a smartphone, laptop or anything with an audio input. Unfortunately, you need to buy separate adapters if you want to use RCA etc. The cool thing is that the transmitter doubles as a charging dock where you can rest the Sennheiser RS165 headphones right on top aligning the contacts underneath the headphones base with the top of the dock. The transmitter has a battery indicator to tell you that it is charging and the headphones comes with rechargeable batteries right out of the box.
The earpads are not made of velour or leather but the comfort is surprisingly good. The earpads are thick and the headband has a bit of extra padding to minimize pressure points. The RS165 isn’t particularly attractive as a result but wearing these for the duration of a standard movie felt just fine.
The audio quality of the Sennheiser RS165 is true to the Sennheiser brand with great noise isolation. It sounds a lot better than the typical high-end Bluetooth headphones because the wireless 2.4 GHz transmission really helps. At standard settings, bass sounds a bit flat which is to be expected when watching movies but the details are still well-defined. When listening to music, you do have an option to activate the bass boost button which adds a great deal of kick to upbeat tracks. The vocals slightly get ruined but not to the extent that you no longer enjoy the music. For both movies and music, the RS165 gets a big nod especially considering the price.
Wireless range is the weakest part of the Sennheiser RS165 simply because the higher-end models allow you to be close to 100 meters away from the base while the RS165 has a maximum range of just 30 meters. If a wall or two gets in the way, the range is cut significantly. But the cool thing is that if you go out of range and go back in range, the sound slowly fades in.
• Very cool transmitter / charging dock.
• Fairly comfortable.
• Exceptional audio quality.
• Comes with rechargeable batteries.
• Lacks adapters.
• Limited wireless range
• Not very attractive
The Sennheiser RS165 will cost you a reasonable $219 so you save at least $60 if you can deal with the limited range. The good news is that if you are okay with the range, you’ll be treated to a great home audio experience and you might probably ditch any cheap wired headphones you have in the house for listening to music too.