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JVC HA-FXT90

100% Positive Reviews
Rated #27 in Universal Fit

Posted

Pros: Fun, musical sound with thick timbre; Great, tight Lows; Sweet & forward Mids; Sparkling Highs; Deep, 3D soundstage

Cons: Mediocre Isolation.

Tight competitor of GR07, this IEM isn't a replacement for GR07, but rather, a complimentary IEM.

 

How does it sound? Fun, thick, and musical. Not your best analytical sounding IEM, while it does bring out details nevertheless.

 

To me, it's a great buy, because I don't need anymore accurate sounding phones, but rather something fun and colored to my personal preference. Mainly use it on portables and listening to vocals, rocks, and oldies.

Posted

Pros: Balanced sound, a mild smile-shaped FR (by ear); very musical yet detailed

Cons: Fit can be a problem at first; shallow insertion; so-so isolation; can bea bit piercing in the highs for treble sensitive people

 

Before I get into it, I'm going to list what I did listen to the most when I evaluate the JVC.
 
Sayonara Zetsubou Sensei OSTs, an anime OST that features a myriad of genres, and songs that I have listened to so many times. This helps a lot because I can recognize any changes, most of the time.
Muse, mostly from the album "Black Holes and Revolutions" and "The Resistance".
A few other bands and artists on and off like Coldplay, Keane, Florence + the Machine, Adele, Bloc Party, and a few other anime OSTs like Tengen Toppa Gurren Lagann's OST and Mahou Shoujo Madoka Magica's OST. As I have seen time and again, most of anime OST cover so broad a genre that I need to listen to them.
When I'm in front of my desk, I listen to them from my laptop using Foobar 2000 through a Fiio E10 USB DAC/amp device. When I'm out and about, I use my trusty 2-year-old Nokia N8. Music are mostly in .flac and 320 kbps .mp3 when on my laptop, and only mp3 on my phone.
 
While I'd like to start with the usual way people write reviews, I am not experienced enough to write that way. As such, I will try to write about what I hear separately by general frequency range, and will link to YouTube samples to some of the songs that truly highlights this IEM.
 
Bass is punchy and very impactful, but not boomy or flabby. Just enough amount of bass for a non-basshead to love it. I think the bass extension is quite low, but as I don't listen to many bass-heavy songs, the strongest I could think are from Muse, I can't really confirm this. It's not too overpowering, although when a particular song is mastered with gobs of bass, it will deliver gobs of bass, not more, not less. IMO they are also quite accurate, but as I said before, my lack of experience does hinder this a lot.
 
Vocals are to die for with these, especially for female vocals. The way the vocals are presented through the JVC is just phenominal. While very slightly recessed compared to other elements of a song or instruments, they are not veiled and remain clear and detailed, even through a very busy song. I find the treble are not forward nor recessed. There is no sibilance that I could hear, and enough sparkle to brighten a song but not being painfully so.
 
Vocals more or less are centre, with it sounding like it comes from the back of your skull. They sound very intimate, and drowned out a bit when there's bass going on in a song. IMO the soundstage is fairly wide; I reckon it extends to 30 cm, half a meter or so left and right, but not a lot in front and behind. Instrument separation are superb; on busy tracks, such as some of the instrumentals from the aforementioned Sayonara Zetsubou Sensei OST, I can hear the different instruments playing quite well. But what's great about it is that it doesn't sound disjointed or too separate, all seem to be in sync with each other.
 
Overall though, I think the FXT90 is balanced on both ends in a very small 'U' shape frequency response, with a very slight bass forwardness. Also, I think this is a quite warm sounding IEM, but no 'veil' or anything covering the treble and mids.
 
For more thoughts, songs I find to be so perfect with these and pictures, you can check out my blog post.

Posted

Pros: Very Musical Sounding & enjoyable, Excellent timbre, Guitars sound brilliant, Solid build, comfortable, Good cable & jack design, Value for money.

Cons: Driver flex, shallow fit makes you wonder whether you really got a good seal or not, mediocre isolation (tip dependent), Sparse availability.

Damn..another one..

 

The Ultimate Ears 500 left me feeling lukewarm, to be honest. Though I had been initially impressed, as the days passed by, my liking for it faded rapidly with each passing day- something I never experienced with any other iem I owned.This was one IEM which I regretted buying, to be honest. No offense to any owners, but the UE500 didn't cut it for me. Fortunately, I spotted a JVC FXT90 going for sale along with an E7 and I pulled the trigger on them. I always wanted to own an FXT90 after hearing from Shotgunshane that these were the bomb for distortion guitars. Turns out he was absolutely right.

 

Packaging, Build Quality, Accessories

 

Bought these used. They were in pristine condition and very well maintained. Comes in a clear plastic box with the printed stuff inside and the iems on display. There's a small case for carrying the iems (which I haven't used) and three pairs of single flange tips. Considering the FXT90-s shallow fit, JVC could have bundled along a pair or two of double flanges or some Complys.

 

No exotic materials or fancy chrome stuff on board- just a simple, smooth housing made of strong, clear plastic which shows off the twin drivers. The nozzles are angled. The cables are very well relieved and it doesn't twist up into a knot easily nor develop bends. The jack's pretty sturdy too. Nothing much to complain here.

 

Comfort and Isolation

 

The angled nozzles, smooth and ergonomic shells ensure a good fit- albeit a shallow one. I get good results from the stock single flanges, but I get the funny feeling that I'm not getting a good seal when I actually do. Weird.. but they are comfortable and isolate reasonably well. In windy situations, however, I could hear the wind noise. Tried them out with UE single flanges and found that the stock ones were better. Didn't experience microphonics with the cables.

 

There is a huge caveat here- driver flex. The drivers flex loudly when I insert them and get a good seal. It's alarming and annoying. It's the first time I experienced this on an iem. This can be solved to an extent by holding up the tip of your pinnae with one hand, relaxing the jaw and slowly inserting the iem to your ear canal while pushing the eartip to one side of the ear inorder to prevent the seal. After it is inserted, let go of your pinna and it's done with much less or almost nil driver flex. A more expensive way to counter this would be to get foam tips.

 

Sound Quality

 

Bass:  Dynamic, Strong, Excellent decay, great slam and impact, moves quite some air, not as fast as a BA, but thick notes sound very pleasing and satisfying. Absolutely no complaints at all. Drums sound good- though not of GR07 caliber.

 

Mids: Excels at bringing out the crunch and grit in distortion guitars (maybe due to the mild mid bass hump?)- very, very satisfying to listen to rock and metal on these. Decay times are also excellent- sounding natural and very musical. Solos are awesome with these.

 

Highs: Has the right amount of sparkle- more detailed than the UE500, not as harsh as the Pana HJE900. Cymbal crashes and high hats sounded good. No complaints here either. A/B-ing with the UE500 revealed that though the UE500 had good sparkle, it didn't have as much clarity and definition as the FXT90.

 

Soundstaging: Average. Not as wide as the UE500, not very intimate either. There's an airy and open feeling though. I can't find much to complain here either.

 

Hiss, Sensitivity

 

No hissing with portable sources or with my E7. Sensitivity was good. Not as sensitive as the W4-s, HJE900; about on par with my Grados and much better than the UE500.

 

Verdict

 

Again, like the HJE900, these puppies punch far above their weight and are great for rock and metal. The FXT90 has a more musical, natural & even sound signature with more powerful bass, thicker notes, decay times and that uncanny ability to make distortion guitars sound great. The Panas have more clarity and speed, but have hotter and more fatiguing highs. Both are great in their own way, but I prefer the FXT90. The only real issue with the FXT90 is the driver flex. This can be avoided, as I had mentioned earlier- but it's a point to note anyway. Still, these things rank right alongside my Grados after the W4 as my favorite go-to pair of ear gear to listen to. Highly recommended for fans of rock genres.

Posted

Pros: Fun signature, value, design, style

Cons: Microphonics, fit

The 90s have taken a while to grow on me. I found a deal for the L2s (champagne accents and cable) on AMZ Warehouse and pulled the trigger after becoming interested in JVC's dual-driver design.

 

Out of the package I was less than impressed. Granted I was coming from the GR07s, I still wasn't exactly thrilled with the sounds these produced both unamped and through my cMoy. They were the most microphonic thing I've ever used and other than a solid bass presence and surprisingly detailed highs (but not particularly extensive), they weren't anything to write home about. 

 

So I let em burn. (in)

 

Whether burn-in is a psychological or physical phenomenon is up to you but I have noticed enough of a difference to overturn my initial impressions completely. I hear a little more bass extension, especially on the upright Bill Evans Trio, the trebs and mids seem to be clearer, and well, the microphonics aren't going to be cured by burn-in but wearing them over ear is actually quite easy and microphonic-free. 

 

These guys regularly compete with the GR07s for iPod play time and they are a wonderful complement to the more analytical sound of the VSonics.

 

If you want a unique set of IEMs that won't break the bank I would strongly suggest you look at the FXT90s.

Posted

Pros: Balanced (but not quite analytical) sound; Musical, dynamic presentation; dreamy mids; punchy, live bass; wonderful staging depth and separation

Cons: Burn-in makes out of box presentation a bit offputting - highs felt underrepresented for a while, effecting the soundstage as well; stock tips are ;(

I've had my FXT90 L2s for about 3 weeks now...love them! Got them from Accessory Jack and the shipping took a bit of time, but not anything too absurd. My Atrios were broken for so long that I got really used to my Senn HD595s, so the soundstage freaked me out for a bit as brain burn-in commenced, but the cohesive presentation and musicality of these IEMs is really just...heartwarming. I'm listening on an iPhone, no amp or nothin.

 

The appearance of the L2 champagne-colored version is really, really nice. The brushed metal-looking backing on the IEMs themselves is understated, refined, sophisticated...not at all "blingy" but not dingy by any means. Looks very NICE. Classy. The cable is...well, it's shiny. Hahaha...not much to say about that. They are nice looking as well. Slightly microphonic worn cable-down as I do, but nothing noticeable, especially with the clip in use and...you know...SOUND coming throught them (oh yeah, that little thing!).

 

Yes, engaging...yes, forward presentation. They are colored, to be sure, but one thing I love about them is the clarity and detail of the mids and separation that exists alongside the colorful, musical signature. Soundstage was cramped at best out of the box, but they are really burning in nicely and opening up. It's not wide. Average width (jury is still out, as they seem to be improving still). The depth is great though.

 

The sub-bass extension is really a lot better than I expected...coming from Atrios, that's saying a lot. I've got this sweep sine-wave file that just goes from 0Hz to something like 30k and the RUMBLE on the lowest end is phenomenal...it actually shakes my brain! Awesome. Musically, the bass has good punch although it's not SUPER tight and quick and articulate like the Atrios were...however, that's a bit unfair since they are one of them there bass kings. The FXT90s handle bass superbly, don't get me wrong. I will say this: the articulation has improved with the burn in time I've given it so far (I'd estimate ~100 hours maybe?).

 

The mids...well, it's not unfair to call these mid-centric, and this is where much of the magic and music of the sound comes from. Mids are up front, but not overpowering...they are just....PRESENT. What I love about this presentation is the detail and texture the mids have. I believe the punch and insistence of the mids, along with that texture, is what gives these IEMs a great 3D element to the soundstage. This is also where some of the separation is done and it makes an ensemble orchestral recording (Howard Shore, Nobuo Uematsu) a joy.

 

Highs are placed very well within the overall signature and shimmer. I wouldn't say it has that real treble sparkle...but they are not recessed. I expect they will open up a bit more with time, and actually I think my tips have a lot to do with the treble I'm hearing. No sibiliance, even with stuff like "What's the Use of Wondrin'" from Carousel or "Wishing You Were Somehow Here Again" from Phantom of the Opera, which would kill someone who is treble sensitive with the way those ladies hit their esses. Bright, sharp, but not cutting into your brain.

 

Anyways, that's my impressions. Gonna look around for tips now ^_^

Posted

Pros: Sound, price

Cons: Comfort, isolation

These earphones were a pleasant surprise, I wasn't sure what to expect but these sound absolutely amazing.

The bass at first was a little light but it seems over time that it has improved and I also use my small, cheap fii0 E5 amp and that seems to improve it somewhat.

 

These have a very good, balanced sound and are brighter than any of my previous sets, but I actually like that.... at first it was odd getting used to it but over time I am enjoying the brightness and clarity much more than I thought I would.

 

These are a fun earphone but also sound fantastic and separation is good and these have done just about every genre of music I've listened to, justice.

 

 

This isn't really a review, just a few thoughts on these excellent earphones.

 

 

So a 4/5 or 8/10.

Posted

Pros: Fun, thick, musical sound, good timbre, good build quality

Cons: Isolation is only average

When I went looking for a new IEM last year, I really did a lot of research and wanted something with great SQ and detail but also fun sounding as I listen to a lot of rock and planned to use this pair at the gym.

 

These are an absolutely fantastic value.  They can be had for around 80-90 bucks online, and for that price they are absolutely wonderful IEMs. Check out the excellent review here on Head-Fi in the 309 IEM comparison thread for a more detailed review of these.

 

These are not analytical phones by any means, but they provide very good detail and imaging, excellent timbre, and are flat out fun to listen to.  Not a basshead IEM, but the bass does have good impact and authority.  The presentation is very intimate and somewhat in your face, but I liked that aspect of them for what I was using them for.  They have good energy and kept me pumped during my workouts.  

 

The somewhat U-shaped frequency range of these makes them excellent for rock, which is mostly what I listen to, but they work well with other genres as well.  

 

Isolation is okay but not great, but that's to be expected given their design and relatively shallow insertion.  They are pretty comfortable, but not the most comfortable IEM I've used.  Build quality is very sturdy with a semi-translucent shell that lets you see the two carbon nanotube drivers inside.  They are tough little drivers and do take a bit of a burn in period to loosen them up.  Mine didn't start to sound their best until after a couple months of use.

 

Sadly someone stole them last month, and I ended up trying a HiFiMan Re-400 as a replacement, but I would highly recommend them, especially to rock fans, and I definitely may pick up a pair again down the road.

JVC HA-FXT90
By:
Description:

JVC HA-FXT90 Twin System Inner Ear-phone is another two drivers in one earpiece in-ear from Japan. The makes it delivering deep bass and clear detailing from a tiny unit. With two drivers installed, the FXT90 only weight at 6.8 gram. These headphones works on an 8 to 25 KHz bandwidth reproduction with a 107dB/1mW output sound pressure at 12ohms. JVC makes it looks and sounds exceptionally good and standing out from it competition. Available in Black color only.

Details:
DetailValue
Driver TypeDual Dynamic Driver
Impedance12 Ohm
Sound Pressure Level107dB/ 1mw
Models:
Model Name/TypeMPNEAN/UPC
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