What We Like
- The choice between wireless and wired mode is very useful.
- A comfortable fit.
What We Don’t Like
- 8 hours of battery life is fine, but could be better.
- The design is pretty dull.
You’d be forgiven for mistaking the name ‘Mpow Thor’ for a logical next step in the endless cycle of Marvel reboots. It isn’t the most subtle name in the world, but the proof, as always, is in the pudding.
It would be fair to say that Mpow’s design for the Thors tends towards the utilitarian and generic rather than reaching for any particular new heights of visual beauty. The Thors are available in three color variants: black, which looks so much like the default image you’d think of if someone said ‘headphones’ that it might as well be a prop; blue, which is such a dark blue it might as well be black; and gray, which is actually a pretty nice design. If you’re looking for a fashion statement, you may want to look elsewhere.
Other than that, the headset features a foldable mechanism which allows the ear cups to bend into the comparative safety of the headband to prevent damage when in transit. This is a nice feature, and will definitely see regular use given the difference in the amount of space they take up when folded compared to unfolded.
Mpow has included the now pretty much essential pairing of an integrated microphone and remote control. The microphone works about as well as you would expect it to do, but the remote is something of an odd choice. It’s not that it doesn’t work well, it’s just that the design choice is a little bizarre. Instead of the standard, three button design, the Thors feature a pressable dial which you can slide up and down to adjust things like volume, manage calls, and skip between tracks. It takes some getting used to, but seems to do the job.
As well as being foldable, Mpow has provided another convenience factor in the form of the Thors working as both wireless and wired headphones. This means that once you have run out of the advertised 8 hours of battery life, you can plug in an aux cable and carry on listening. It’s a great feature, and will certainly save you from a boring journey if you have committed the cardinal sin of failing to charge overnight. Trust us: it can be a real life saver.
On the whole, connectivity worked as well as you can expect it to for headphones at this price point. This means that pairing was simple and fast, and while we did experience a few instances of skipping or minor lag when in particularly busy (and therefore connection saturated) environments, it was not enough to cause a major annoyance. The issues also disappeared entirely when testing the Thors in less busy areas.
Sound quality is decent. It is a fairly balanced sound across the board, and this may disappoint if you favor the kind of bass heavy response that is popular at the moment in both contemporary music and headphone manufacturing. They certainly perform as expected considering the price, however, and you are unlikely to be disappointed.
Battery life is advertised at ‘more than 8 hours’ which is perhaps a little vague. In our tests, we got just over 8 based on continuous playback at a middling volume level. This is fine, especially given the option to switch back to wired mode whenever you want to, but it is by no means great considering some of the offerings of competing products in this price bracket.
Mpow have done a good job with the Thors, and they make up for a fairly generic design with features like the option for wireless and wired playback mode. Sound quality is good for the price range.