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A Truly Fantastic Mid-Range IEM

A Review On: HEAD-DIRECT HiFiMan RE-262

HEAD-DIRECT HiFiMan RE-262

Rated # 46 in Universal Fit
See all 8 reviews
Review Details:
Audio Quality
Comfort
Design
Isolation
Value
Purchased on:
Price paid: $149.00
Kojaku
Posted · 4842 Views · 0 Comments

Pros: Lush, Articulate, Well-Extended, Very Reasonably priced

Cons: Comes out of the box with forward mids, should be carefully amped (Though an amp isn't really necessary).

Packaging


These IEM's come in a pleather casing with a mount for the earpieces as well as 3 adapter plugs (balanced, unbalanced regular polarity, unbalanced reversed polarity), 5 sets of replacement filters and 5 sets of earpieces (1 large bi-flange, 1 small bi-flange, Small olives, medium olives, large olives). The packaging is tasteful and more importantly, durable.

 

Build Quality

The IEM's are made of a hard plastic, where the plastic housing terminates in a metal output nozzle. I have several friends who own RE0 and REZero and the cable and earphone in the case of the RE262 feel much sturdier and well-built. As others have said, the cable sleeve collar is rather stubborn at first, so don't force it.

 

Audio

These IEM's were quite a surprise to me. I have owned IE8's and UM1, so I feel as though I've experienced the far ranges of warmth and analysis in IEM's. Little did I know that just over the horizon was an IEM that would "Goldilocks" its way into my favorite spot.

 

The RE262 does not, to my tastes, require nearly as much burn in as has been advertised here on head-fi, but it DOES NEED BURN-IN. It comes out of the box with very forward mids. The treble feels rolled off, while the bass is well-extended, and articulate, but not very well textured. After about 10 hours burn-in though, these bad boys shine. The treble begins to sparkle, but stays smooth. The mids drop back a bit and you can hear the effortless warmth and precision the 262's produce. The bass begins to kick and thump, to encompass the other frequencies, but not overwhelm them. Suddenly I feel as though I really had wasted several hundred dollars on my previous IEM endeavors.

 

Now those were the characteristics that really change with burn-in. One that does not change, and is quite amazing from the get go is the staging. The staging on this IEM is brilliant. It's an out-of-head experience. Truly engrossing.

 

Now one very important thing to mention here is that you will not get the best out of RE262's from, for example, an iPhone HPO. Though, the sensitivity and impedance ratings are quite deceiving. You can achieve more than adequate volume from an iPod out, it just isn't the best quality audio you can get. 

 

I pair my RE262's with a cmoyBB 2.03, which is known as a great, spacious, warm amp. The bass boost raises the quantity of bass, but the RE262's do all the polish work, making for a bass experience that is articulate, textured, and visceral all at the same time. This portable rig is a wonder to behold. This is just testament to the fact that amp pairing should be very carefully considered with this IEM. Find something warm and spacious to accentuate its character.

 

What I will warn is that these headphones are musical. Now that may sound great to most, but it is no reference IEM. It is ridiculously detailed and crisp, but not as analytical as, for example a balanced-armature IEM. Now, I've never been a fan of cold sound, nor have I ever been a fan of bloated sound, so this IEM is just down my alley. It's like a tiny version of my wooded, recabled sr225i that I can enjoy anywhere. Truly fantastic.

 

Final Thoughts

 

The HiFiMan RE262's are a fantastic mid-range IEM that can really hang with the big boys. It's warm character doesn't undermine the brilliance of its mids, ample (though not bass-head status), articulate bass, slightly sparkly highs (post burn-in), and ridiculously large soundstage. Oh yeah, and there's that ridiculously low price.This IEM gets a Kojaku 4.7/5.

 

 

 

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