Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Zombie-fi

It might seem strange but the owner of ECCI is better known among the Chinese audiophiles with the nick name  'zombie'. After almost two years of quiet, finally ECCI is renewing its old line-up with the new red and black Mark II production - PR100 MK2 and PR200 MK2 will be about US$21 and US$37 each, while the new PR300 will be known as PR3002 for US$60 (picture above). It is good to know ECCI is still dedicating to the budget market.

Saturday, January 26, 2013

Voice Up


UE has added another custom to their line-up. This times, it is the vocal centric Vocal Reference Monitor for US$999. Though it is three drivers with three ways crossover, it is rolled off at both ends of the frequency response intentionally to push the vocal forward, mainly just for singer who want to listen to his/her own voice and nothing else (and there will be a male and a female version). I don't suppose this will catch up in the consumer market any time soon.

Sunday, January 20, 2013

New XBA

Sony is introducing another IEM to the balanced armatured based XBA series. This time, it is the lower end C10 using a side-firing BA driver (the UE600 uses similar driver). The big surprise is that the MSRP is a mere US$55 in Japan, which means this could be even cheaper when it hits the market.

Friday, January 18, 2013

[REVIEW] Final Audio Design Adagio V

To be frank, I never take FAD as a serious audiophile maker, at least not in the IEM scene. It is not to say they never make good IEM that I like – quite the contrary, I actually do find two or three of their mid end IEM models to be decent, both in sound and price. But for the quite a few of their upper line-up, most of which I have had the chance to listen to, I couldn’t stop but wonder why they are so overpriced for what they do. Called me biased if you like – FAD is more of a designer’s brand to me than anything else, where myth and brand image are often sold well out-of-proportion over the actual sound quality. The good news is that the Adagio series is much lower priced than many of its expensive siblings, but does it sounds good and offers good value?


Sunday, January 13, 2013

CES2013

Another CES comes and goes. We didn't see much exciting products at last year CES, and we certainly didn't see many of them this year as well. Not surprising as CES has gone too big for new product launch and I would imagine many companies would prefer to avoid launch at such a crowded event. Though we did see companies such as Monster, Sennheiser, Audio Technical and Logitech / UE, etc. showing off their already announced products, I only notice two companies that worth a mention: 

First, AudioFly is announcing new addition to their current line-up, the AF120, AF140, and AF160. AF120 will be a two drivers hybrid like the AF78 and estimated at $250+, AF140 is dual BA estimated at $300+, while AF160 will be triple BA estimated at $400+. Release date is unknown for now. It will be a tough fight for AudioFly as these IEM are priced rather close to well established big brand, plus the early impression from DigitalTrend doesn't seem to be all positive.

Second, Jabra, the company that is best known for its bluetooth headset, is releasing an IEM called the Vox, along with two full size headphone. While the Vox definitely looks interesting in design, it is the company's intention to go into the headphone business that is putting it on the spotlight. Release date is in Q2 2013, but no pricing yet.

On the side news - HifiMan has officially released the new RE400 in CES - but we already know about the IEM for months now so it isn't an exclusive CES event. I already have a sample and will be reviewing it in the short future.

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

[Impression] FiiO E07K ‘Andes’

Almost three years ago when E7 was introduced, it was one of only two sub-$100 portable amp / DAC options in the market, and it pretty much out-marketed the competition right away. E7 is originally designed to solve the low sound quality issue related to nettop and netbook due to their miniature size. But with the decline of these tiny PC, E7 becomes lesser relevant and begin to show its shortcoming, especially its lacks on driving power when user are adapting it for other usage beyond just nettop and netbook. E07K is basically FiiO’s answer to bring E7 up-to-date while still maintaining the same low price at $89.



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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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