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Hisoundaudio Popo Review

post #1 of 12
Thread Starter 


Hisoundaudio Popo Review


Thanks to Frogbeats for the sample




First impressions:  Okay I have to say it, just what the F is with the name?  Popo, I mean really where do they get these.  What’s weirder is I’m told in Chinese it means grandmother!  Words fail me.  That aside it’s a nice looking little product, I like the red cable on them and it feels great.  The buds too look fantastic in their woodiness, looks and feels very much like a quality product. 


First listen and these are pretty apparently about the bass.  The bass is big and powerful, seriously powerful.  I can see this pleasing many but I can also see it irritating me after a while.  Still all round they sound pretty good so far.  Burn in time.


Source mostly FiiO E9 and 1G Ipod Shuffle with 75 Ohms added.




Lows:  Big and heavy.  Listening to Madge’s “Mother and Father” the bass is huge and has massive slam.  It lends itself very well to the electronic punchy nature of the song.  I can’t deny it’s a little fun but dear god it’s not something I’d want all the time.  The bass is slamming, slamming into your delicate little ears and for me it’s way too much.  For the quantity here it holds together really well but there is just no escaping that there is just so much.  The bass is utterly dominant and I really don’t care how good they are I frankly want them out of my ears.  Shifting to lighter music and still that low end is present but it does hide a little if you really force it to.  Honestly I really can’t fault the quality of its low end behaviour but there is just too much.  Its real shame as if it was dialled down it would be really fun, it has great authority and power yet so cleanly delivered.




Mids:  So so.  Vocals are pretty nice, liquid and warm and do really quite well given all that bass but for me I want to hear the vocals and they are so over shadowed by that mammoth low end.  They do come through clearly but get a bit of a warming and bit of a reduction of air.  All in all it’s a bit meh.




Highs:  They can be a bit hard but on the whole they are very warm and pretty rolled off.  That not entirely a bad thing it’s just a sound signature choice.  It’s a pretty popular one particularly in the Far East and has helped Sony sell truck loads of stuff over the years.  Don’t do a lot of it but have a spike in there to dish out enough detail.  For me though combined with the big powerful bass it’s overshadowed a touch more than it should.  Make no mistake this IEM is not aimed at audiophiles but squarely at the “mainstream” market.  I’m sure it will be popular there.




Soundstage:  Biggish.  There is actually pretty good instrument separation here too.


Fit:  Fine.  I did get a touch of driver flex but it wasn’t really much of a bother.


Comfort:  Absolutely fine, any happy to be worn up or down


Cable:  I really like the cable, its a great looking cable and it feels really nice too.




Microphonics:  If you wear them down you get quite a bit and there is no chin slider to help.  However if you wear them up then there is pretty much none.


Accessories:  There is a pretty substantial assortment of tips and it came with another nice case.  It didn’t come in the box as the cases wouldn’t fit but I do believe frogbeats are supplying it with the case.  I cannot comment for elsewhere.  It really is a nice case.


Amped/Unamped:  Yes they improved but I really wouldn’t bother doing so.




Isolation:  Pretty good for a dynamic.  Yes it’s at the potential cost of having venting issues but for me it just falls on the right side of that edge.  Easily enough to get your run over id say.


Value:  Hmm, £38 I wouldn’t buy them but if you want this kind of bass then yeah.  The bass is super powerful and controlled.  Punchy and an agility that it shouldn’t given how much there is.  There is just sooo much.




Conclusion:  My reviews often vary in length and if one is super short then it pretty much means one thing.  I didn’t like it.  When I write I have what I’m writing about in my ears and honestly I want these out.  I don’t like them.  They are so bassy I find them unpleasant.  That’s a shame as they look just wonderful.  I mean they look fantastic but their massive powerful bass I don’t like.  It’s uncomfortable to my ears.


If you like crazy bass then you could do worse as the quality of it here is pretty good.  It’s got fantastic impact and agility but oh god there is too much of it.  Love ‘em or loath them there is no two ways about it, this right here is a great big, hard hitting bass monster and frankly I’d much rather have something calmer.  Listening to the Popo is like having your head in a sub woofer cranked to full and I really don’t like it, however if you love that sort of thing you’ll probably love these.

post #2 of 12
Thread Starter 


Hisoundaudio Popo Quick Review


Thanks to Frogbeats for the sample


Brief:  Bass to crush your skull!


Price:  £38


Specification:  Impedance 16 Ohm Cable Length 124cm Sensitivity 110dB Frequency Range 16 - 23,000 Hz Driver 9mm dynamic driver


Accessories:  2 Sets of Bi Flanges, 3 Sets of Triple Flanges, 3 Silicone Ear Tips (S/M/L), Storage Case, Shirt Clip


Build Quality:  They feel lovely and solid and the look great too.


Isolation:  Very good for a dynamic, easily enough to get yourself run over if you aren’t used to IEM’s.  Maybe even enough for quick flight too.


Comfort/Fit:  Both aspects were very good.  Even though they isolate quite a lot for a dynamic there really wasn’t much in the way of venting issues.  There was a little driver flex but nothing too bad.  Comfort was great too.


Aesthetics:  Love how these look.  I can see the red cable being a bit of a love or hate thing but I really very much liked it.  The buds looked fantastic too with their wonderfully natural carved wood look.  Great stuff.


Sound:  Skull smashing bass.  I can’t say I enjoyed these at all.  They have quick, hard hitting, punchy and hugely abundant bass that really stretched what my ears could take.  The rest of the spectrum was pretty good, a touch warm but very clear.  Highs were a little crispy but mostly rolled off and subdued behind that big low end.  The bass is dominant and it overshadows everything else.  You can still hear everything else in there clearly but the bass mountain is sitting there and is rather distracting.  For me it was all too much but if you love bass powerful enough to kick you in the head then you’ll just love these.


Value:  Great bass quality at the price given its vast quantity but you really got to want a lot of bass.


Pro’s:   Great punchy bass if you like tons of it.  They look fantastic.


Con’s:  The bass, way too much and too powerful for me.



post #3 of 12

I got the bass-light version of the Popo and it sounds amazing for the price. :)

post #4 of 12

Here's my take. I do like them with a caveat. I would agree with Mark about the bottom/lower mid but I didn't find the top harsh, and think it pretty well balanced. They do roll above 12K but it's really not very apparent as the character and texture is there and the highs are otherwise informative. Vibrant but not harsh.


The bass; for a bass head that likes overly warm mids, these will be the trick but like Mark, it's not my favored sig and here is the caveat. You can actually make the mids too lean by blocking the vent which is between the cable and tip. What I did quite arbitrarily was tape the vent which leaned the mids too much and then put a thin pin hole through it to add a bit of warmth back in. The low bass remains but in better balance and the mid bass can be balanced to suit with the right size hole. It's really pretty good like this. I don't recommend permanently modding things as it voids warranties. When warranty is of no concern and I want to change vent size in a more controlled and permanent way, I now use candle wax and a warm pin of the diameter I prefer . The phone itself is a very nice listen this way as they're less hashy than many, have good weight and balance. I think they're extremely competitive with the mid bass adjusted to preference as the presentation is a natural one with a bit added weight that doesn't veil the mids. I can't think of anything I've heard below $50 that I prefer overall though there are some that also fit in here.


Value seems good also as it come with a great selection of good tips. 3 triples, 3 doubles and 4 single flanges. The hybrid knockoffs that come installed weren't my fav here but close. The all black that look similar were my seal and sound fit. The cables are not very microphonic nor tangle prone and the the overall appearance is just great, depending on how you feel about a dayglow cable color. Could use a cinch. They no longer logo the backs and it's just the nice wood back there.

Edited by goodvibes - 8/14/12 at 3:36pm
post #5 of 12

Was gonna make a detailed review of these but... really..  you took words outta my mouth.


Initial, <5mins inpression was .. WHAT THE F...  this is possibly the most bass oriented personal audio equipment i've ever come across with. It does it smoothly and with adequate enough control but holy f^ck...  who the hell would... *facepalm* 


Listening to some of my generic music is find, slightly overbearing but still, I understand this is a bssy product. Moving to some popular RnB, House and what not..  and jebus... felt like regurgitating...  lol.



post #6 of 12

Where would be the best source for ordering these if one is in the US? Straight from Hisound?

post #7 of 12


Originally Posted by MuppetFace View Post

Where would be the best source for ordering these if one is in the US? Straight from Hisound?

You can order it through ebay for 60$:


post #8 of 12


post #9 of 12

Popo is a childrens or parents sort of way of saying "ass" in german. Good job with the name I guess :D

post #10 of 12

It's also ebonics for the police.

post #11 of 12

He's also a nice fellow from Dragonball Z




                           Meet Mr. Popo

post #12 of 12

Japan isn't always the most graceful when it comes to handling certain stereotypes...

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