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The Starkey HF-2 thread: Affordable custom IEM for your phone - Page 2

post #16 of 40
Thread Starter 

Yes, the price seems to be spot on. And like I've stated; if you're looking for a set for your cellphone there's really no way around the HF-2.

 

And you're right, the canal size is a bit odd at first but one quickly gets used to it. I do enjoy how they look very subtle. My other CIEMs have people looking at me weird since CIEMs aren't very common around here.

 

I have already received a PM from one guy who told me he had placed an order with Starkey. Very excited to hear his thoughts on the product.

post #17 of 40

Thank you for the review, it seems like the HF-2 has a similar sound to the SA-12, but at a much more affordable price!  And great point @ project86 about the sleeping with them, they may be the perfect CIEM for that (well, all canal only CIEMs).

post #18 of 40

Hey

 

Im sending my impressions in for HF-2 next week, but for some reason its not possible atm to order them online, but Alf has a person on it..

 

The impression/review from Staal sound very good to me - My options are with black cable and light blue faceplates, im gonna use it with my itouch only, altho i have a HTC One S i could have used it for, but internal space is utter crap..

 

Hope Starkey will finish them fast as possible, as my SA-43 is going there too with my impressions for repair, and i dont have any Ciems with me at all right now offshore, so i placed a order for some K550 to pass time until i get my Starkeys back..


Edited by Hemshemems - 5/3/12 at 3:07pm
post #19 of 40
Thread Starter 

Sounds great Hemshemems. I hope you'll be sharing your thoughts about the product with the rest of us.

post #20 of 40
Quote:
Originally Posted by Staal View Post

Sounds great Hemshemems. I hope you'll be sharing your thoughts about the product with the rest of us.

Sure sure, but my stuff wont get shipped before monday, and i have to wait atleast 2 weeks so, u know the drill...

 

But i have written to Alf to hurry up and make it do it and ship it to me fast, but one have to be patient when getting Ciems, tho it only took 19 days to get my SA-43, but returning for refit and so on was more of a hassle with customs offices delaying my shipments all the time..


Edited by Hemshemems - 5/5/12 at 2:35pm
post #21 of 40
Thread Starter 

Yeah, the wait can be quite agonizing. Especially when you're waiting for a refit as you've already had a listen to something you like and then have to give it up again.

 

I hope you get your HF-2 and SA-43's soon. I've been curious about the SA-43 for a while myself, and finding out how great the much cheaper HF-2 sounds I can only imagine how great the SA-43 is.

post #22 of 40
Due to moving we will be partially unavailable between May 19th and 29th.
We will do our best to help you as soon as possible.
 
Alf seems to be occupied now with some move, and i havnt been in touch since the 18th of May, as i wasnt sure that my package cleared Norweigian customs i delayed the payment a bit, but my track and trace only says taken by them and arrived in Noway on the 10th of May....
 
This is really getting on my nerves...
post #23 of 40
Thread Starter 

That's very unfortunate. Did you hear from Alf yet?

 

I'm sure he'll do his best to sort you out the moment he's available. I haven't heard of anyone that has had a bad experience with Alf yet, and I myself found him very helpful and fast in replying to e-mails. 

post #24 of 40

Yeah i got a reply from Alf yesterday, and my impressions and my SA-43 are still held back at the customs office as he hasnt recieved anything yet. I guess the main problem was my shipment method, and i stated a value lower then 200nok as Alf said would clear it, but no no the bastards took it anyway...


Edited by Hemshemems - 5/23/12 at 1:26pm
post #25 of 40
Thread Starter 

Any updates regarding your HF-2? Very interested to hear what you think of it.

 

It's a real shame that you've been having all these problems with the customs office so far.

post #26 of 40

Here's what I think about the sound:

 

Bass: Contrary to what I was expecting, the bass is actually full and warm. Now this is a pleasant surprise for me as I generally like a warmer bass presentation anyways. Bass notes have good impact and have a certain thickness to it. Despite the thicker note presentation, the bass is still very nicely textured.  The level of detail is high and the bass exerts great control, keeping everything tight and in control. There is a nice attack and decay speed, but I find the reverb (persistence of sound in a space after the original sound has been removed) to be lacking for bass and drums. This can cause it to sound not as natural, especially when compared to dynamic driver based earphones that usually have better timbre. The bass can also give off impressions that it is slower than it actually is as a result of the thick and full notes, but it is relatively quick and can handle busy passages with ease. The bass quantity of the HF-2 is close to neutral and is only missing some extension at the very bottom. The lower frequencies can still provide a nice rumble and hit with authority, often making me wonder if the sound is really coming out of a TWFK dual driver configuration. Don't mistaken that statement as if these are a basshead's wet dream come true though, because they are not. I think the HF-2 has just the "right" amount of bass to not offend for being excessive, or disappoint from a lack of bass.
Midrange: The HF-2 has a smooth and liquid presentation that is neither forward nor recessed. The clarity is very good but the HF-2 is not the most transparent in its price range. While I would not call the midrange as analytical, detail retrieval in the midrange is above average and presented in a nonaggressive manner. With the dual drivers, there is no dedicated midrange driver but Starkey did a good job in the overall coherency when transitioning between the bass, mids and highs. As for vocals, they are not recessed but rather quite well balanced with the other frequencies. They are also not thin-sounding and have just a bit of warmth along with a softer note presentation. I do find myself yearning for more edge and bite for certains genres, but that would be my only caveat with the mids.
Treble: The treble region has good extension that is free of sibilance and harshness. It does not have a splashy, hot treble with many spikes, but instead a smooth and non-fatiguing top end. As a result, it does not sound nearly as effortless and endless as treble happy IEMs. Despite this, the treble does not lack energy and like the bass, is inoffensive. The top end is resolving and nicely detailed, resulting in an involving sound. The HF-2's treble does not have enough to please fans of analytical sound signatures, but it is neutral and accurate which helps with the overall realism. 

Soundstage / Presentation:  In terms of the presentation, the HF-2 is fairly neutral sounding and a very balanced in-ear. There is a very slight elevation in the bass and it does add some warmth, but the HF-2 stays true to the recording. The soundstage is just average, with good depth and okay width, but for the most part stays concentrated in the center. It doesn't sound as airy as the competition, but it does have accurate positioning.
post #27 of 40
Quote:
Originally Posted by kckc View Post

 

Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show)

 

Here's what I think about the sound:

 

Bass: Contrary to what I was expecting, the bass is actually full and warm. Now this is a pleasant surprise for me as I generally like a warmer bass presentation anyways. Bass notes have good impact and have a certain thickness to it. Despite the thicker note presentation, the bass is still very nicely textured.  The level of detail is high and the bass exerts great control, keeping everything tight and in control. There is a nice attack and decay speed, but I find the reverb (persistence of sound in a space after the original sound has been removed) to be lacking for bass and drums. This can cause it to sound not as natural, especially when compared to dynamic driver based earphones that usually have better timbre. The bass can also give off impressions that it is slower than it actually is as a result of the thick and full notes, but it is relatively quick and can handle busy passages with ease. The bass quantity of the HF-2 is close to neutral and is only missing some extension at the very bottom. The lower frequencies can still provide a nice rumble and hit with authority, often making me wonder if the sound is really coming out of a TWFK dual driver configuration. Don't mistaken that statement as if these are a basshead's wet dream come true though, because they are not. I think the HF-2 has just the "right" amount of bass to not offend for being excessive, or disappoint from a lack of bass.
Midrange: The HF-2 has a smooth and liquid presentation that is neither forward nor recessed. The clarity is very good but the HF-2 is not the most transparent in its price range. While I would not call the midrange as analytical, detail retrieval in the midrange is above average and presented in a nonaggressive manner. With the dual drivers, there is no dedicated midrange driver but Starkey did a good job in the overall coherency when transitioning between the bass, mids and highs. As for vocals, they are not recessed but rather quite well balanced with the other frequencies. They are also not thin-sounding and have just a bit of warmth along with a softer note presentation. I do find myself yearning for more edge and bite for certains genres, but that would be my only caveat with the mids.
Treble: The treble region has good extension that is free of sibilance and harshness. It does not have a splashy, hot treble with many spikes, but instead a smooth and non-fatiguing top end. As a result, it does not sound nearly as effortless and endless as treble happy IEMs. Despite this, the treble does not lack energy and like the bass, is inoffensive. The top end is resolving and nicely detailed, resulting in an involving sound. The HF-2's treble does not have enough to please fans of analytical sound signatures, but it is neutral and accurate which helps with the overall realism. 

Soundstage / Presentation:  In terms of the presentation, the HF-2 is fairly neutral sounding and a very balanced in-ear. There is a very slight elevation in the bass and it does add some warmth, but the HF-2 stays true to the recording. The soundstage is just average, with good depth and okay width, but for the most part stays concentrated in the center. It doesn't sound as airy as the competition, but it does have accurate positioning.

 

 

 

Thanks for your impression.

Can you have some comparison with your jh5.

I'm looking for an entry custom and this one is quite interesting 

post #28 of 40

Nah not yet, but i hope they'll be finished at the end of next week, Alf only sent my SA-43 because they could be repaired and fixed sooner..

 

 

Alf recieved my impressions around the 1st of june, and a turnaround is expected to be 2 weeks, so my HF-2 should be on schedule..

post #29 of 40
Quote:
Originally Posted by xzobinx View Post

Thanks for your impression.

Can you have some comparison with your jh5.

I'm looking for an entry custom and this one is quite interesting 

 

Truth be told, I haven't listened to the JH5 for quite some time. They used to be my go-to customs on the go, but the HF-2 has since taken over not because of the sound, but as a direct result of the smaller form factor and mic functionality. Surprisingly, I haven't given them a side by side comparison yet, but I will do so and get back to you on this. 

 

Without addressing the sound, the HF-2 still has a lot going for it when compared to the JH5 - cheaper, more portable, mobile functionality. If you are looking for a budget custom with a mic, the HF-2 really is the route to go imo. Of course, the JH5 has its pros as well - a removable cable, better isolation, and much more customization options to make it more personal. 

post #30 of 40
Thread Starter 

You got the HF-2 as well kckc? Seems we're all about picking the same equipment. biggrin.gif

 

Glad to hear you're enjoying it as much as I do. My set is still seeing plenty of usage when I'm on the go.

 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Hemshemems View Post

Nah not yet, but i hope they'll be finished at the end of next week, Alf only sent my SA-43 because they could be repaired and fixed sooner..

 

 

Alf recieved my impressions around the 1st of june, and a turnaround is expected to be 2 weeks, so my HF-2 should be on schedule..

 

Any updates? redface.gif

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