Pretty bang for the buck

A Review On: JVC HAFXC51R New Micro HD in-Ear Headphones (Red)

JVC HAFXC51R New Micro HD in-Ear Headphones (Red)

Rated # 276 in Universal Fit
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Price paid: $35.00
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Pros: Surprisingly spacious soundstage, great instrument seperation for the price, highs are nicely detailed without sibilance, partially open, realistic

Cons: Bass anemic (atleast before EQ'ing), mids sound pretty recessed, some missing information in the midrange

I just put these in my ears and the verdict is......thin sounding ;(


atleast before EQ


I bought these by request from a Head-Fi'r, and regardless of that characteristic, im still not disappointed :) 


The bass reminds me of the AKG 701's, practically non present.


However, I couldn't get over how large the sound stage was and how well instruments are separated. 


Definately could see people paying $150+ for this and not being disappointed. 


They seem a bit more picky to audio file quality than other IEM's in this price range, i found my poorly mastered recordings sounding particularly thin through these.


I can definately hear potential with these, especially for how well they do with rock. They have a great soundstage and instruments can easily be determined in direction and the texture is very accurate and believable, however there one major set back is how thin they sound ;/


If they simply added more bass, I think these would be a really popular product. 


They dont distort at high volumes, which is rather unbelievable at this price range, and I found myself headbanging to some "woe of tyrants" with these, and I actually have very few headphones (or IEM's) that induce headbanging, and these do, even with the anemic bass.


The Head-Fi'r that lead me onto these mentioned that these NEEDED eq, which I have yet to have the chance to try until I get my Cowon J3 this christmas, but even un-EQ'd, these sounded really damn impressive for how much I payed. 


When I do get my Cowon J3, I am going to EQ in the low end a bit and maybe EQ out some of the sibilant area's that give it a bit of a "tinny" sound, and I think these will be my new favorite budget portable :D


I can definately hear potential in these babies and I KNOW for a fact that once I do some serious EQ'ing, these could sound absolutely fantastic.


Sadly enough, I prefer these over my IE8's with an aftermarket cable, and those together retail for about $400 together! Everybody talked about how great the soundstage with the IE8's were, and I found it heavily overhyped, and quite frankly, sub-standard. 


I didn't expect these to have a soundstage at all, and instead I found it to be incredibly large and spacious! 


I will definately be returning the IE8's though, not because they are bad, but the huge bass saturation and recessed highs made them sound rather Low-Fi to me, of course thats opinion but it just didnt sound anything near what I payed for it.


From now on. until I give some more time actually listening to IEM's before I buy, I'm not going to be taking like plunges like that with IEM's again (unless they are under $100, then it doesnt hurt so bad, like these :) )


This IEM just goes to show how silly some high end headphone purchases can be, since I would say I only think the IE8's are 10 percent better, and only because they are more full bodied and have plenty of bass.


When these get EQ'd, I'll be worried about how I think the IE8's sound :D. That is, if I havn't returned them or sold them to somebody who is more into that sound signature


I used to think I was a bass-head, then I became obsessed with soundstage after the FA-011's (love those), and now I find myself looking for a nice mix of all worlds (ie neutral)


I will taking these around with me everywhere I travel and I am really really happy with the purchase


The tips are a little uncomfortable and I can find them slipping out of my ears slowly over time when wearing them, which has me worried they might pop out at any moment, but if i jam them in far enough, its fine.


It does gather earwax like the other guy said, and since the drivers are so close to the tips, I think they may need to be cleaned more regularly than other IEM's.


I got spoiled by the comply tips on the IE8's, which were easier on the inner ear but muffled the sound stage and the mids and highs more than i liked


Regardless, this is a pick up you have to get, and at this price, how could you be disappointed?









Cool review lol... did Katun get you onto these?

Are you sure the bass is aenemic?
haha i think its lacking bass, i dont really know why i said aenemic lol
glad you digged it though
and yes katun got me on these heh
Do you have a good seal?

This was one of my favorite songs on the JVCHAFXC51R -

Bass lack?
Huh? I thought my FXC's were broken, they just... magically started working again, they sound like drinking heaven nectar from the foot of goddess Athena, the bass and detail is just that music at max volume is just subliminally intoxicating, it's like a scorching red horizon of black velvet sonic rays.
I bought another, this has above neutral bass. I think they have build quality issues as Kiteki's one had temporarily failed and one side of mines died (can't remember which side)
oh and yeah, I agree about the IE8, it plain sucks
Its a very capable IEM but the bass, ruins it abilities, maybe that'd sound good with some eq'ing as well ?
I typically eq down the mid-bass and up the mid-mids.

After my intense listening session tonight, (without eq), my ears are a bit numb haha, not an easy listen. I want to buy the FXC71 from Japan.
the 2nd pair sound different from the first, I've just listened to them, they haven't had much hours on them, but as Vonx said they are bass anemic, I feel like I'm hearing less bass quantity from the first pair (there's still plenty of bass though).

Is is possible the tip of your driver is clogged? They need cleaning every few days if you use them constantly
Ok so can I join the party?. Great review.
Haha well i did this review after only an hour or two of listening after burn in, so i definately dont think the drivers are clogged yet.
They do sound really nice and spacious and detailed with that song kiteki, and I can "hear" the bass but its a solid several decibals behind the rest of the sound signature.
looks like staxxx reassured that since he bought a second pair and found them considerably more bass light.
Even still, I feel like im already 85% of the way there, I just need to tweak in a little more thumpity thump and this will hold the torch as my new favorite IEM, or any portable for that matter
i have a new found faith in budget-fi D:
You say it is bass deficient, compared to what? Do you mean the bass is something like that of an open Sennheiser headphone such as the HD558? I see people write that the Sony V6 is bass deficient. Yes, the V6 doesn't have basshead levels of bass, however it has bass in natural proportions.
Compared to neutral. The bass is behind several decibals in comparison to the rest of the sound signature. The bass is like that of an open phone, since it is open, but most of my open phones have more depth and impact than these do, and they aren't even what I would consider bass forward either.
I've never heard the V6 so i cant comment.
The bass is so dependant on the fit though. Have you tried different tips with this? Which other tips works with this? The bass seems to improve quite a bit with burn in. Initially I thought it was very bass deficient, however after several hours of burn in, the bass is starting to emerge.
Are there any other iems that have similar construction with the driver inside the ear canal?
I've only tried the stick tips, but they fit my ear canal perfectly, if a little on the large side, so they expand in my ears and I get a fantastic seal, so i know thats not the issue.
It very well could be an issue of burn in, i dont think ive gotten above 100 hours yet, ill come back and chirp if i hear noticeable differences
Vonx, are you inserting these fully? I guess they are supposed to be inserted until the tab is against the ear, and they can't go in any further. Without full insertion you may not get enough bass. Notice that the tips it came with are very different than standard IEM tips.
Dude, I jam these in my ear, hard. haha that sounded wrong but yea im sure its not an issue. the bass seems less recessed now after all this time with burn in and these babies are practically perfect, for 40 bucks, WHAT?
And people said this was an expensive hobby...