Earphones with a customisable sound signature might sound unlikely when you're paying less than £50, but that’s exactly what you get with the Alfa Genus V2s.
While having a choice of output is nice, once you’ve picked a setting, you’re unlikely to chop and change on a regular basis. Still, on good headphones with an excellent array of accessories, more choice is never a bad thing.
Related: Best Running Headphones to Buy
The Alfa Genus V2 offers most of the features you’d want from a mid-range set of headphones. The buds are made from metal and feel sturdy, without being too heavy when hanging in your ears. They look good, too, with a grey and silver finish and red highlights inside the silicone tips.
You get a choice of six tips, including three sizes of silicone ones, two pairs of memory foam tips, and a pair of small, double-flanged ones to boot. I went for the vanilla choice of medium silicone tips and they felt secure and comfortable. There's likely to be something for everyone here.
The rubber-coated cable is thick and sturdy, but it tends to become tangled fairly regularly, especially if you’re careless and stuff the earphones into your pockets. If you're of the more careful type, you'll appreciate the small drawstring bag that Rock Jaw provides. You can keep the cable from bouncing around with the provided lapel clip.
The in-line mic is loud and clear. I used it to make calls on both busy streets and from echo-ridden office rooms and no-one experienced any issues understanding what I was saying.
There’s also a single button for answering and ending calls, which doubles up as a play/pause control when playing media. Double-tap said button to skip tracks and triple-tap to go back. This works on both Android and iOS devices, as well as Windows Phones – although I didn't test the latter.
A volume rocker would've been a welcome addition, but it isn't something you’ll find on many headphones of this price.
You get a choice of three tuning filters on these earphones, which can be easily removed by unscrewing them from the buds. They screw in nice and tightly, so there’s no danger of them coming undone in your ears. I used them for several weeks without incident.
Out of the box, it's the bass-centric filters that are installed. These are by far the worst of the bunch for most listening tastes, making most music sound messy and a little unpleasant. A treble-boosting pair weren’t really to my taste, either.
It’s the Neutral pair, then, that appear to be the best option for those with mixed listening tastes. There’s plenty of bass presence when the buds are properly in your ears and mid-tones are nice and rich. At higher volumes there’s quite a lot of sibilance, which was a little disappointing, but for the money it’s hard to complain about these earphones’ shortcomings.
If you’re looking for sub-£50 earphones, the Alfa Genus V2s are a great choice. My only reservation is over the use of the extra tuning tips, which don’t really enhance sound quality but surely add to the cost.
Related: Best Headphones to Buy
Good-value earphones offering decent sound quality and plenty of accessories.