Pros: Soundstage, Presentation, Micro details, Treble, detailsin and speed of Bass, aaaaaand PRICE
Cons: Included "Accessories"
I got it from Rockit sounds website. Payment was through Paypal. There were no shipping charges to India, so all I spent from my wallet was 120$. It was sent through Hong Kong mail. I got the IEM on the 7th day. Yumi from Rockit sounds was in constant touch through Email. He (She?) sent me an Email when they shipped the product (which was well within 24 hours of ordering), and responded promptly to my queries. It was all smooth and easy.
So a week after ordering the Rockit sounds R-50, I get this parcel, from Yumi. I rip it open, smell the inside of the parcel, open the box, pull out the phones, and my first impression is: “What the.. I’ve been conned!” The packaging is OK, nothing to boast about, doesn’t pamper you, minimalistic, but the phones are puny.. On first look, they look really cheap! I admit, I was a lil worried..
Cable and build, design:
One of the first things I did was to rip off that ghastly silicone/rubber thing off the IEM housing… dunno what its purpose is, comfort I guess, but they really degrade the look of these IEMs. The cable, though braided, is one of the thinnest I’ve come across, on IEMs costing 25 bucks and above. But again, I’ve neither had DBA-02 nor B2, and on close inspection of their snapshots, I guess they’re that thin too. But I do plan a recable soon, for something more durable. The wires also get tangled occasionally, they have a little stretch in them. But there is a chord slider, so tangling is minimum. The IEMs themselves, are tiny .You’d get a good idea of this in the photographs, when comparing the size of the IEMs with the tips. And, the nozzle is long. I like this very much, cause it gives scope for deep insertion. That in turn, almost certainly guarantees seal and bass. The strain reliefs are built well at the Y split and the jack. I wish there was a L jack though, it’s so much more durable. In case of any pull, the cable is going to snap first. I dint notice any strain reliefs on the housings, though the memory wire (which I think is just a copper wire) entering the IEMs does a really good job. The memory wire is of good quality, and serves the purpose well. I Twisted and turned the wires a lot during my tip experimentation and when I removed that rubber thingee. The strain reliefs were subjected to a lot of stress too, then. And still the iems stood up well. So yeah, build quality is average.
I put them on , using the large tips, and nothing.. no seal what so ever. The included tips are crap, believe me. You get this kinda tips with 10$ earphones. The tips just slide over the nozzle, and does not do any help for deep insertion, which I hold as essential to get the best of these phones. I had to make my own tips, using the vsonic large tips, S-400 and the stock small tips. The included case is the same ones you get with soundmagic PL30, but mine is a little crushed, and the zipper is faulty. I brought out my sunrise case (which happens to be my favorite :-) ) and am using them ever since. Hence, I give zero marks for the included “accessories”. And yeah, there was an included shirt clip.
Tip dependant. But with the right tips, the isolation is very good (Better than the GR07).The housing is completely closed, with no vents. And it has long nozzles too(with 2mm openings). I like to listen to music when I’m out for a walk, and the traffic sounds were completely blocked out by the R50 and Bass was completely audible too. Keep your eyes skinned if you use these on the road. These are suitable for the bus and the tube too.
Source: Cowon I audio9 (unamped) Volume:35, EQ:normal
For the most part, I shall be comparing the R50 with Vsonic GR07.
It lays bang at the centroid of an equilateral triangle, whose 3 points are Warm-sweet, balanced and analytical respectively. Difficult to categorize. It doesnt wear you down, or induce fatigue during long listening sessions. The GR07 sounds warmer than these.
3-D, cohesive, immersive. The width is more or less the same size as GR07, which is above average, but it’s the depth, layers and height that makes it stand apart. You hear some instruments behind your head and the vocals in front you. The vocals are not forward though. They are slightly recessed. Imaging is really good, so good, that I automatically want to close my eyes, and immerse myself, and it’s a long time since I’ve done that. The instrument separation is better than the GR07. The presentation is spacious, cohesive,3-D and addictive.
Details…Details…Details.. So much of them.. It feels like you’ve got a whole new playlist. I particularly like how you can catch on to one of the instruments and follow it without any trouble at all. I guess it has something to do with the speed of the TWFK drivers. Details in the cymbals particularly, are laid out in front of you for examination. It brings out all the flaws in a recording. Every tiny nuance is presented effortlessly. Full marks here!
Simply put, it is the best I’ve heard. Extends well, and importantly, is not sibilant. But if the recording is sibilant, it shows up. Good news is that it’s not offensive. It does not have any scary spikes. It also twinkles and sparkles pleasantly when called for, particularly in guitar harmonics (Antoine dufour: These moments, reality), harp, tiny bells, musical box (Nutcracker-sugar plum fairy). The details in the cymbals are impeccable, I found myself surprised more than once, in many familiar tracks. It is also very easy to follow the cymbals and hear them decay.
Slightly recessed, Cannot really be called “sweet”. It is detailed. Especially with classical music. Strings float smoothly in front of you. Timbre is remarkable, you get a natural feel of the instruments. The speed shows you all the tiny little shakes quakes and breath intakes in the vocals. The R50 does not smooth over recording sibilance in vocals (Eg: Katie Melua tracks).This although is not offensive.
Fast, detailed. The decay is very low, so it brings out a lot of details in the bass. No discernable Mid-bass hump, no bleed of bass into mids. The quantity is lower than the GR07, but the quality is better. The quantity is such that it is in par with the mids and highs. It comes out when asked for, though. It loses a hair of extension(does it? Im not very sure!!), just a tiny bit, at the sub-bass. Personally, I found it more enjoyable than the GR07. Speed is its biggest strength. Double bass kicks are clearly audible and discernable. There’s a decent amount of impact, and it also creates a good “environment”. There is also a fair amount of punch and body. And the good isolation helps a lot, along with the BA drivers, which eliminate any kind of driver flex. All the aforementioned qualities improve significantly with the fiio-e11
35 on my cowon I audio 9, 70% on Ipod classic brings out the best in R50. It is a low volume iem. I find that it synergizes well with both I-pod HO and the cowon(Boy that was a surprise). Although, I find myself slightly preferring the Cowon.It does not need any amping. It also responds well to EQ.
Fiio E11 Juices up this IEM, and brings out it's best. The sound becomes significantly stronger and gains more authority. And the Bass boost of the e-11 is wonderful with the perfect amount, and resisting any temptation to bleed into the mids.However, the bass boost does not extend to the sub-bass.Soundstage widens, and the presentation becomes more immersive.There is a tiny loss of detail in the lower treble.
I would unhesitatingly pay up 250$ for this sound. But they retail @120 $.(what wud we do if not for china!) Although, remember that you most certainly will have to purchase new tips. Some might even consider a recable. But still, these are giant killers. These are the only IEMs with which I could just close my eyes and immerse myself into the music, without getting distracted by the shortcomings of the gear. 120$ is a ridiculously low price for that.