Pros: Sound quality, Accessories
Cons: Isolation and comfort
Review: MEElectronic M-DUO
First off i would like to thank Joe at MEElectronics for sending me this review sample. I will write as honest a review possible. They received over 50hrs of burn-in and little changes were noted so don't judge them straight out of the box.
IPod Classic 160gb (rockboxed) > M-DUO with normal single flange tips
dual dynamic drivers
10 Hz to 20 kHz
16 Ohms at 1K
up to 27 dB
135 cm / 53 in
Packaging, Build quality and Accessories:
Packaging is quite good, they come in a squarish box with a picture of the IEM's on the front and details on the back. This is just a sleeve, you slide out another box which has a magnetic flap to show the IEM's sitting in a plastic intray. I think they could have used a better intray as the plastic feels a bit cheap. Below the IEM's you'll find the carry case and underneath the intray is the manual and warranty papers.
Overall quite nice packaging but could be better.
Build quality is good on these, the housing is all metal with great strain relief on both the jack and entry to the housing, the iPhone Mic is metal with a good quality button and i have no real complaints about the build quality, the cable does tangle a bit and has a little memory effect.
Accessories included are also great, with a semi-hard clamshell case, 6 pairs of different silicone tips and a cable clip (useful to keep cable noise down).
Comfort, Isolation, Cable noise and Driver flex:
Comfort is good once you get a good seal, the shape of the housing lets you get quite deep insertion but they are more comfy with shallow insertion, and you do have to adjust them from time to time, it is very important to get a good seal with these, they are very seal dependent and it took me a while to get a good fit.
Isolation is not a strong point of the M-DUO, it is below average and i suspect it is because of the vented nature of these IEM's and also the housing maybe.
Cable noise is present, not too bad but i would recommend using the cable clip to reduce cable noise.
Driver flex is also present but not a big problem and adjusting them solves this.
Split into the usual:
With a dedicated woofer for the lows i was expecting big bass, but after listening for a while, that was not the case. The bass is definitely north of neutral but it's not overpowering. Superb punch in the mid-bass with it extending effortlessly down passed 20hz, these have amazing capability in the lows. You can feel the rumble in the sub-bass but it's never too much, neither does it drown everything out, I guess that's due to the dedicated woofer. The lows are not the fastest or the tightest, but they certainly are fun.
These have a slight V shaped signature so the mids are behind the lows and highs, but the mids are clear and detailed, never sounding veiled or muffled. There is a spike in the upper-mids which can lead to some sibilance and harshness in female vocals but its not too bad and should only affect the most sensitive of ears.
Highs are good in general, they have good presence and sparkle but extension could be better. Because of the spike in the upper-mids you get the perceived extra detail, but real extension leaves a little to desire. The highs are not particularly airy and they become a little splashy sometimes but for the price they fair well.
Soundstage, Imaging and Instrument separation:
The soundstage is good with it being both fairly wide and with good height.
Instrument separation is fairly good but there is not much air between the different instruments.
Imaging is very good though giving off great spacial queues and sounds are easily pinpointed.
Slight V-shaped sound sig with an overall fun and enjoyable sound with no major faults. Isolation and fit could be better but for the price you get a well made IEM with a fun, full bodied sound.
Skrillex – First Of The Year (Equinox) (320kbps MP3)
Paramore – Franklin (320kbps MP3)
Diana Krall – The Girl In The Other Room (FLAC)
Deolinda – Passou Por Mim E Sorriu (live) (ALAC)
Suicide Silence – Unanswered (FLAC)
Massive Attack – Angel (ALAC)
Eat Static – Dzhopa Dream (ALAC)
The XX – Crystalised (FLAC)
Funeral For A Friend – Bend Your Arms To Look Like Wings (ALAC)
Mumford & Sons – Little Lion Man (FLAC)
The Scene Aesthetic – Humans (259kbps MP3)
A Hero A Fake – Swallowed By The Sea (254kbps MP3)
Vivaldi – The Four Seasons, Spring Allegro (ALAC)
Johnny Craig – Children Of Divorce (161kbps MP3)
Deadmau5 + Kaskade – I Remember (Caspa Remix) (320kbps MP3)
Black Uhuru – Utterance (ALAC)
We Are The In Crowd – Never Be What You Want (226kbps MP3)
Silverstein – Discovering The Waterfront (320kbps MP3)
Concept Of Thought – Our Thought (FLAC)
Nirvana – Something In The Way (Unplugged) (ALAC)