Thursday, December 31, 2009

Exclusively Japanese's

Well, I thought I want to conclude year 2009 with one last news update. The two IEM mentioned here are both from Japan, and likely will be exclusive to the Japanese market (but not that you can't get someone to export them).

JVC announced the new flagship HA-FX700 just few days ago as the successor of the fairly successful, but aging HA-FX500, the first IEM with a wooden diaphragm. The new model will have an updated, larger wooden diaphragm (more like the cone of the diaphragm, actually). Estimated to hit the Japanese store at February 2010, it will cost somewhere around US$300 to US$350. Do expect to pay more if it ever makes its way out of Japan.



Radius Japan announced their new flagship IEM, the HP-TWF11, last month (I know, it is not really 'new' news anymore). A few interesting notes: First, it looks like the Sony MDR-EX700 - but that is not to say the golden/red color combo isn't more classy than the black Sony. Second, it has a really cool transducer. A single magnet, individual coiled dual diaphragms, two-ways dynamic transducer is not what you will find on your average IEM. In fact, no one ever uses two-ways dynamic transducer since Panasonic ceased its production over a decade ago. Unfortunately, like a lot of great gadgets in Japan, I doubt this IEM will ever be marketed oversea. Well, one can always dream.



One of the great thing about this year is, I really see some major technical improvement in the IEM market. While the market is getting more competitive (and crowded), the overall price/performance ratio has been driven to ever lower level which is great for the consumer. Now you can get new models of good sounding IEM that used to be priced twice as expensive for its level of performance. We actually start to see IEM from small companies which have been trying to make a good name for themselves become more popular and start to threaten the bigger brand. Hopefully the good trend will continue to 2010, and we will have another fruitful year. Cheer and Happy New Year.

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Important: All postings are my own personal opinion only and should not be treated as absolute truth. I do get things wrong just like everyone else. Always do your own research!

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