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Sunday, April 29, 2012

Hot and Cool

Yes, this is the IEM many Head-fier are waiting for. Without any further ado, I present to you the first official rendering of VSONIC's hybrid dual BA + one dynamic driver IEM, the GR08.

Here is a rather interesting new IEM from a Japanese startup Ocharaku (*found by an ex- acoustic designer from Sony) called Flat4-SUI - a dual dynamic drivers, but not in typical sense. Instead of producing sound for listening, the second transducer is actually there to 'cancel' sound, or more precisely, unwanted peaks and resonance. In simpler term, it is kind of like an active damper. Not further detail at this moment except it will be released in June.

Friday, April 27, 2012

Tap Dancing

Koss has always had some weird and wonderful idea - enter the Striva Tap, a wireless IEM that uses WiFi to stream music directly from the Internet (via to the two separated earpiece. Yes, from anywhere that has a WiFi access. The two earpieces will each has a microprocessor to keep everything in sync between them. To make sure you can enjoy your music out of the house with no WiFi, it even comes with a tiny battery powered WiFi adapter that will take analog signal (i.e. iPod's line-out) and translate it to WiFi signal for you. Not cheap though, it is currently available at US$500. There is also a full size headphone version called the Striva Pro, which is cheaper at US$450.

Thursday, April 26, 2012

New Fit

News has arrived ahead of time that FitEar Japan will be announcing their latest flagship custom, the MH335DW, on the Spring 2012 Tokyo Headphone Festival at 12th of May. No detail or price yet - but giving how FitEar like to name their custom, this one will have 5 drivers, one more than the current MH334.

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

[REVIEW] VSONIC GR01, GR02 Bass Edition, GR06 and GR99 – V for VALUE

First, I’ll like thank both VSONIC and for the samples. With the success of GR07 since early 2011, VSONIC has had quite an ambition plan to develop a series of IEM that will continue to offer top value for the money. With GR06 being launched late last year, now it has been joined by the company latest flagship, the dual balanced armature based GR01, as well as the more budget oriented GR02 Bass Edition and GR99. Though being debuted as the flagship, GR01 won’t be replacing the well received GR07. Instead they will be sold side by side and both will be considered as the company’s flagship. Likewise, the GR02 Bass Edition won’t be replacing the normal GR02 (which is the renamed R02 Pro II), but will be offered side by side as well.

Price wise, GR01 can be found online for US$185, GR06 is around $65, GR02 Bass Edition is around US$35 and GR99 is around $25.

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

[REVIEW] Brainwavz M4

First, I’ll like to thank MP4 Nation for the sample. M4 is born in the search of a bassier version of Brainwavz’s flagship B2 at a more affordable price, yet still required to outperform or at least match the sound quality of the rest of the M series – which is not as easy as it seems, since the M series has always been very well received by the users. While M4 is certainly different from the warm, more mid centric sound of the M series, it is by no mean a total departure. While M4’s more V-shaped frequency response still keeps the strong bass intact, it also offers really good quality treble detail that has been missing from the M series. In a sense, M4 is the hybrid for those who are looking for something in between the M series and B2.


Tuesday, April 17, 2012

FrogBeats C5

The U.K. based online headphone retailer is developing their own line of custom IEM. The first model to showup is the C5 - a dual high, dual mid, single bass, 5 drivers, 3 ways IEM . Not much detail yet, but there should also be a three drivers C3 and a four drivers C4 as well.

Monday, April 16, 2012

Sennheiser IE800.

Yes, IE800, not IE80. Apparently news is really slow these days as I haven't seen much discussion on the IE800 announced just a few days ago in Berlin's IFA show. Well, apart of having a ceramic housing and two stainless steel vents on the back, Sennheiser also claims to have employed the world smallest ultra wide-band dynamic driver - 7mm in diameter with an impressive frequency response of 5Hz to 46.5kHz. Of course, Sennheiser never quite mentions that human hearing only extends up to around 20kHz (adult is more typically at around 16~18kHz) while most commercial source only play music up to 20kHz because that is where we stop recording in music. 

Don't get me wrong - having ultra wide-band playback is still a good thing because it might have better linearity / less distortion. But it is no guarantee for good sound quality. So don't buy headphone that claimed to have a longer extended frequency range and hoping it will be better. The truth is more complex than that. 

Anyway, prepare to pay big money for this as the early price quote is around 600Euro, or US$780 (*some claim a lower 500Euro), with an expected release date of 'summer 2012'. I don't know how well Sennheiser is expecting to sell this - $780 can get you a really good set of custom IEM, and a few hundreds more can get you flagship from some of the best custom maker in the market. Then again, Sennheiser pricing strategy has never made much sense to me in the past, and that probably won't gonna change any time soon. If you ever wonder why I don't usually review Sennheiser's IEM, that's one of the big reason right there.

Too Good to Be True

There is a recent thread in showcasing a new JAYS' 5 drivers balance armature prototype that is on sale in the infamous TaoBao (Chinese equal of eBay) for RMB1500, or roughly US$240. Till now, all we have known about the next JAYS flagship is the long delayed quad drivers x-JAYS. But could this new FIVE drivers IEM be the next best thing from JAYS? Unfortunately, no - at least not from JAYS it is. I already received words from JAYS that they have nothing to do with this 5 drivers 'prototype' at all.

Strange though it may be, one must wonder if that is actually a company that will develop a 5 BA drivers IEM just to fake it as a phantom 'prototype' unit from another company? Then again, you never know if this IEM actually has 5 drivers or not. Well, you know, what to stop a faker from making false claim?

Sunday, April 8, 2012

[Impression] Hifiman HE-300

First, I’ll like to thank HifiMan for the HE-300 sample. For the last couple of years, Fang @ HifiMan has brought a lot of attention to the company’s line of full size headphones by releasing some of the best planar magnetic headphone there ever are. However, the HE-300 is the company’s first entry to the full size dynamic headphone – perhaps a challenge Fang sat for himself to release a (*price wise) class leading dynamic headphone. If that’s his goal, I would say HE-300 is doing very well. Note: though never announced officially, the second batch (and onward) of HE-300 (*known also as the ‘rev2’) is tuned differently to the first batch and being considered better by most who had listened to both. My impression however will be based on the first batch, which is what I have with me.

Disclaimer: All trademarks and logos in the website belong to their respective owners. Beside getting free review samples, I don't work for or get paid by anyone to write anything on this website, or anywhere else in that matter. Also, free review samples are never sold for any financial gain. I do buy gears and review them, but for simplicity you (the reader) should always assume what I review is free sample in nature (and thus comes with all the bias). The website does have Google Ads and Amazon Associates enabled (which I have no direct control over their content) - though I don't write review for a living, nor does the ads generates enough money to cover my breakfast (in fact, not even one breakfast per week). Listening to music and playing with audio gears are purely hobby for me. In short, I am just an audiophiles who happens to have his own blog. Not a journalist who happens to be an audiophile. Oh, and excuse my writing as I am not a native English speaker and can't afford a proofreader. Also, just because I don't write in a negative tone doesn't mean I don't write down the negative aspect of a gear. Please read them carefully. Last but not least, please note that this site uses cookies to track visitors' number and page view.

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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