“Modularity” is a big selling point in the world of gaming and tech. Being able to customize and swap out individual components of a larger unit allows for future upgrades and simple repairs. Rather than wasting an entire product and replacing it with a new one, users can just swap out the older or faulty parts. AIAIAI has brought the benefits of modular design to headphones. Read on for our AIAIAI TMA-2 headphones review.
AIAIAI TMA-2 Review | Unique Selling Point
The AIAIAI TMA-2 headphones are not all created equal, with multiple options for the headband, speakers, earpads, and cable. Different variants of these four components can all be swapped in and out to make for the perfect headphone experience.
The AIAIAI website does a great job of explaining what each of the components does and how it affects sound and comfort. Users can choose from some pre-configured designs that target common use cases, but the TMA-2 Builder configurator allows you to go one step further and mix and match from all available parts. While most components come in a clean black color, there are colored cables that allow for some added flair.
I was sent the Comfort Wireless for review, which contains the S04 speaker units, H06 headband, E04 earpads, and C05 cable.
AIAIAI TMA-2 Review | Build your own
Taking the TMA-2 Comfort Wireless out of its packaging was unlike any other headphone unboxing I’ve done before. You see, the individually sealed components are placed in a flat box, with the user having to build the headphones themselves upon delivery. It’s pretty unique and, honestly, I found it exciting to put the parts together for use.
While building a set of headphones may sound complicated, it’s really very simple. All components clip together with ease, and the act of putting everything together really emphasizes the strengths of modularity. All users learn firsthand at how easy it is to pop the parts into place, which definitely makes future part upgrades or sidegrades an attractive idea.
The clean matte black box hints at the overall aesthetic of the headphones, with the TMA-2 free from any over-the-top branding or unwanted accent colors. I think they look incredible, I really do, with a modern style that will stand the test of time.
The soft-touch materials are light but still feel premium. After a month of daily use, build quality is not a concern for me, especially with how AIAIA forces users into that initial build process. The company encourages new buyers to get involved with the basic-level construction. It’s certainly a unique approach that ultimately adds an air of robustness and confidence.
AIAIAI TMA-2 Review | The listening experience
While I can appreciate stylish-looking headphones, that strength can be weakened by subpar sound quality and comfort. You need to be having a good time when listening to music over longer periods, otherwise you’ll just get frustrated and look for an alternative. It’s not good enough to just look cool. Thankfully, the TMA-2 delivers with both great sound and comfort.
My variant, the Comfort Wireless, has multiple clues in its name. The “Comfort” part is accurate, with the H06 headband and E04 earpads combining to make for a very comfortable listening experience over multiple hours. The clamping force, even on my too-large head, is secure but not overly tight. It’s clear that AIAIAI has put these through a lot of testing to fine-tune the perfect balance.
Also in the Comfort Wireless’ name is “Wireless.” For those who choose the H05 or H06 headband, you’ll enjoy compatibility with Bluetooth devices. The wireless headband has three buttons for controls. I like their placement here as they are easy to find and push. You can also access your mobile device’s virtual assistant and answer calls via the included microphone. The call quality is fine. It’s worth noting that you can still use a 3.5 mm cable on the wireless variants, which plugs into either side of the headphone via a proprietary locking mechanism.
The headband charges via USB-C which gets bonus points from me. The port is in a bit of an awkward spot, however, on the inside of the headband near the speaker wire. It’s tricky to plug in with the earpad attached, but once you get the technique down, it works fine, and the port is hidden well when not in use.
The combination of the S04 speakers and E04 earpads make for a very fun sound. While I lean towards more natural sound for my day-to-day work, I found the AIAIAI TMA-2 Comfort Wireless audio to really make music pop with the intentionally boosted low and high ends. As someone who hates the artificial boominess of some bass-heavy solutions and the painful harshness of headphones that push treble too far, I immediately loved what I was hearing from the Comfort Wireless.
Bass is tight and highs are present, but without losing the mids. This is fantastic for music, but also great for gaming. I really wasn’t expecting this, but tracking down footsteps in Apex Legends and Valorant was still very easy, while also being able to enjoy the booms of gunfire and explosions in battle. You won’t get the wide soundstage of dedicated open-backs, but you can still game competitively with the TMA-2.
AIAIAI TMA-2 Review | Room to expand
While I’m very, very happy with the TMA-2 Comfort Wireless, I’m still excited by the potential for upgrades in the future. Being able to purchase a red C10 cable for a bit of extra flair when streaming, as well as getting the E08 earpads for a more open-back style and S05 speakers for more critical listening, would be awesome.
It’s this ability to easily swap parts in and out that makes the TMA-2 a fantastic headphone for both at-home and on-the-go use. You could have them set to wired, open-back, critical listening for home use and professional tasks, and then go for wireless, closed-back, fun listening when commuting or at the gym. That’s honestly huge!
What’s more, if anything should break, the modularity allows you to quickly swap in a new part. AIAIAI’s limited warranty lasts two years.
AIAIAI TMA-2 Review | Modular masterclass
With a starting price of $145 for the “All-Round” configuration and rising up to $350 for the “HD Wireless” variant, the AIAIAI TMA-2 manages to squeeze into most budgets. The modularity allows for a relatively small initial investment with the potential to upgrade in the future, without missing out on features.
Aside from a potentially high price, depending on configuration, the only thing stopping me from calling the TMA-2 “perfect” is the cable, as I would have preferred to see no proprietary lock to make it easy to swap in any wire. Also, I’d love to see a microphone in the style of the V-MODA BoomPro to appeal to those who want a headset for gaming. I think AIAIAI could implement this tastefully without hurting their brand image.
AIAIAI has convinced me that modular is the way to go for headphones and it’s truly been a joy to run the Comfort Wireless through their paces. I’ll be using them as my daily drivers for recreational listening and, potentially, critical listening when I buy those extra parts!
TMA-2 Comfort Wireless review unit was provided by AIAIAI.