Welcome to The MMA Corner Reviews, where we at The MMA Corner take a look at a product with the potential to benefit, or be a detriment, to your lifestyle.

In this edition, we examine the SL300 Noise-Canceling Headphones from Soul Electronics. The trendy headphones market is booming right now, and while it may seem a bit flooded at the moment, Soul’s recent product launches have helped put the company back toward the front of the pack. The SL300 series is not a new edition to Soul’s product line, but they have been released in new colors, which is why we’re taking a look at them now.

Right off the bat, notice the quality of the product when you open the box. Included are:

  • The Headphones
  • Two tangle-free audio cables (one Apple compatible)
  • Hard Shell Case with carabiner clip
  • Microfiber cleaning cloth
  • 1/8″ to 1/4″ Adapter
  • Airline Adapter
  • Batteries (that’s right, batteries included)

The headphones themselves are large and tell the world you know how to listen to music in style, but they’re not bulky and uncomfortable. The padding makes them more pleasant to wear than your favorite beanie, and they’re surprisingly lightweight considering the amount of technology packed inside them. In addition to the noise-canceling features, the click of a button lights the logos up, which is a nice feature to have if you’re shuffling around in the dark looking for your favorite pair of cans, or if you just want to make other people on the midnight train to Georgia jealous.

The tangle-free audio cable with controller works leagues better than anything Apple has yet to make in house. The flat design keeps it from knotting up, and the detachable feature lets you tuck it away in the hard shell case or somewhere else without worrying about the connection point to the headphones getting damaged. The standard audio cable with 1/8″- to 1/4″-inch adapter also works perfectly if you have a home studio, and although the length isn’t ideal compared to other studio headphones, the versatility, comfort and portability of the SL300 series makes up for it. Compared to other top and mid-tier brands of studio headphones used here at The MMA Corner Studios, the SL300 series has so far performed the best overall.

As far as travel goes, these bad boys fold up and can be packed away just about anywhere, despite its full over-the-head size. But if you don’t want to shove them in a backpack pocket or risk damage, the hard shell case can be clipped to anything and can take a beating better than Diego Sanchez. While I’m not sure who actually listens to the radio provided on airplanes anymore—or which airlines actually still use the classic airline audio jacks—the option is there if you want it to confer the SL300 series into full ’90s compatible airline-travel listening devices.

But chances are the noise-canceling feature is really what you’re banking on with these when it comes to travel. They do a good job of washing out the white noise, and when it’s engaged, it also gives a richer tone and depth to lower registers’ frequency sounds. If you’re looking for something that has the ability to eliminated the sounds of airplanes flying overhead and ambulance sirens, then these are not for you. They may say noise-canceling, but noise-reduction is a more appropriate label, as they are also not a substitute for proper PPE in a high-noise environment.

When it comes to cost, Soul puts out a price tag that’s comparable to those of Monster or Beats, with the SL300GG Gold and SL300MS Silver costing $229 MSRP. But the original SL300 in Matte Black are only $79 MSRP, making them the only high-end, noise-canceling, over-the-ear headphones on the market right now for under $100.

Overall the SL300 series performs, delivers and lives up to the company’s motto of “Power, Clarity, Comfort.” The only drawback we could find is the length of the standard cable, which could easily be fixed by providing the option to buy a longer one via the company’s accessories line (hint, hint), and the price. The price itself isn’t a drawback compared to their competitors, but it’s tough for most people to justify spending over $200 on headphones, regardless of quality or brand (even though most readers of this site regularly spend $50 a month on UFC pay-per-views). The saving grace here is Soul’s offering of the original Matte Black at a huge discount without any compromise to quality, so Soul’s SL300 series definitely gets the Gold Medal Review from The MMA Corner.

Editors Note: Soul Electronics provided The MMA Corner with equipment for use during online video broadcasts and audio recordings, but did so with the understanding that any reviews would be as thorough, honest and without bias as possible.