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Average IEMs

A Review On: ClarityOne


Rated # 600 in In-Ear
See all 4 reviews
Review Details:
Audio Quality
Purchased on:
Price paid: $112.49
Posted · 1497 Views · 1 Comment

Pros: Overall clarity, non-kinkable & non-microphonic cable, accessories

Cons: Discomfort due to large eartip diameter

This "review" is based off a couple weeks' worth of experience with the ClarityOne, which I bought out of curiosity.


I used them primarily with my MP3 player, the iAudio X5, which contains files encoded with LAME 3.90.3, using VBR at 96-256 kb/s. So not necessarily an "audiophile" setup, but that was primarily what I intended to use them with if I was going to keep them.


First a preface that I own the JH Audio JH13 custom IEMs, which I like a lot. I didn't buy the ClarityOne to replace my JH13 but rather merely to try them and see if I could maybe use them as a back-up for secondary purposes.


So it could be said that I've been spoiled by the JH13, which I actually find pretty amazing with my MP3 player, and in comparison the ClarityOne didn't really hold up. It lacked the cohesive "wall of sound" element that the JH13 has, and it sounded very weak in the bass & mid-range too. I just couldn't tolerate these for either metal (In Flames, Helloween, Kamelot) or prog rock music (Porcupine Tree). The bass wasn't very deep or forceful either and I ended up very dissatisfied with electronica too (The Crystal Method, The Prodigy).


I'd describe the ClarityOne as sounding relatively thin in the mid-range & bass, with more of a tilt towards the treble than the bass, and very diverged towards the left & right too, as I never got proper center-point imaging with them, regardless of music. Also, considering that "clarity" is in its name, I didn't think its clarity was that great either. Definitely good, just not great - not as good as the Etymotic HF5 that I also recently bought for example, or my JH13.


I also want to single out the treble as being not very good either - when I tried some classical music, the violins came across as very screechy and fake-sounding. Not sure I'd recommend them for classical music for this reason.


But the one thing that detracted the most from them for me was the discomfort, primarily due to the large diameter on the plastic tip on which the silicone eartips are placed. Or in other words, the plastic tip was too large for my ear canal, and when I used these for long periods of time, it made my inner ear hurt. Trying the other eartips didn't do anything to help, as the plastic was just too large in diameter for my ear canal.


In short I'd describe these as having average sound quality for the price (not great but not terrible either), with a warning that not everyone will find them comfortable. I ended up deciding not to keep them and gave them to someone else as a gift, who didn't report any discomfort btw.

1 Comment:

I'd be wary of comparing a $120 dynamic to any BA when it comes to detail/clarity.
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