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Final Audio Design Heaven IV - Page 3

post #31 of 238

They don't make their own drivers, they do however make well-aired housing. Their drivers are basically the same thing as in the Ortofon eQ5 and eQ7, but vented differently. The pioneer their own housing and their own prices, NOT their own drivers. 

Quote:
Originally Posted by kiteki View Post

 

Any company which pioneers it's own drivers deserves respect and admiration.

 

 

Copying and refining the existing pallette is a limited exercise.

 

 

 

post #32 of 238

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by shigzeo View Post

They don't make their own drivers, they do however make well-aired housing. Their drivers are basically the same thing as in the Ortofon eQ5 and eQ7, but vented differently. The pioneer their own housing and their own prices, NOT their own drivers. 

 

 

 

This topic is very interesting... then whose driver do they take I currently very curious now...

post #33 of 238
Quote:
Originally Posted by shigzeo View Post

They don't make their own drivers, they do however make well-aired housing. Their drivers are basically the same thing as in the Ortofon eQ5 and eQ7, but vented differently. The pioneer their own housing and their own prices, NOT their own drivers. 

Quote:
Originally Posted by kiteki View Post

 

Any company which pioneers it's own drivers deserves respect and admiration.

 

 

Copying and refining the existing pallette is a limited exercise.

 

 

 


That's interesting. I remember the community at some point deciding that they don't use moving armatures. Do they really use the Yashima drivers which I assume are also in the e-q5? Pioneer their own prices lol.
post #34 of 238

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by vwinter View Post


That's interesting. I remember the community at some point deciding that they don't use moving armatures. Do they really use the Yashima drivers which I assume are also in the e-q5? Pioneer their own prices lol.

 

ph34r.gif eh if they really used such driver then those people who had chose to buy this have not yet tested e-q5 at all ? Then the only differences will be the air vented design, material use as casing makes the different in sound am I correct ?

post #35 of 238

Having heard the entire line of FAD 'Heaven' products against the Grado GR10 before, I can say that none of FAD's products have that hybrid, 'moving armature' sound. The sound is a traditional BA sound.

 

FAD perhaps doesn't manufacture their own drivers, but I'm pretty sure they do have a subcontracted company that provides them drivers made completely to their specifications and does provide drivers to any other company. I remember someone, probably ClieOS, mentioning that the factory was somewhere in Indonesia, but I can't confirm that statement.

 

I think that people need to realize that FAD products are almost never a bargain --- not the Piano Forte II, not the Adagio II nor III. The last two are very fun, enjoyable earphones, but technical monsters they are not. What FAD does well is basically all their products give a very distinct, pleasant midrange coloration and significantly wider and open-feeling soundstages at their respective price points. On the marketing and pricing front, FAD is strange beyond all else. Their high-end products are prohibitively priced, but each of them are irreplicable niche products that conventional, reasonable earphones just can't match. In fact, I don't think any high-end FAD is supposed to be a person's daily earphone.

 

Chalk up these quirky aspects of the company to snake-oil or whatever, but FAD has also been working hard at bringing down their prices for more to enjoy. That is why the Heaven IV is exciting. It's a reasonably priced earphone, and it it delivers the same type of sound that FAD is known for, then it could very well be a success. The fact remains that FAD products are unconventional, in sound, usage, and pricing. If people are looking for that predictable sound from the likes of Shure and Westone, then perhaps they shouldn't be looking at FAD earphones and scoffing at their prices or marketing material.

 

The last thing I'd like to add is that none of FAD's products are meant for the overseas market. In the last couple of years, they have opened it up to limited markets in Asia, but only reluctantly, and only after strong demand from those local distributors.


Edited by tomscy2000 - 4/20/12 at 3:13pm
post #36 of 238
Quote:
Originally Posted by tomscy2000 View Post

FAD perhaps doesn't manufacture their own drivers, but I'm pretty sure they do have a subcontracted company that provides them drivers made completely to their specifications and does provide drivers to any other company. I remember someone, probably ClieOS, mentioning that the factory was somewhere in Indonesia, but I can't confirm that statement.

I think that people need to realize that FAD products are almost never a bargain --- ...

Piano Forte II is made in Philippine, if that's what you are looking for. I don't know where the rest of their line-up is made. I also said FAD is form > function, and I still believe so. They are, IMO, a design firm that tailor to the audio market. Beyond the unique crafted metal housing, I really see nothing particular valuable in their products, especially the kind of price they are asking for (and I did hear quite a few of them). I guess I am more inclined to use their IEM as art decoration in the house rather than audio gears.

Just my 0.02 cent.
post #37 of 238

Am I the only one who sees a lot of well made, yet vastly overpriced products coming out of Japan lately?

post #38 of 238

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by ProjectDenz View Post

Am I the only one who sees a lot of well made, yet vastly overpriced products coming out of Japan lately?

 

I will not say audio technica is overpriced product :) they are pretty decent earphones that has reasonable price, good sound signature for people that looking at spending at their affordable level

post #39 of 238

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by miragez View Post

I will not say audio technica is overpriced product :) they are pretty decent earphones that has reasonable price, good sound signature for people that looking at spending at their affordable level

 

Then maybe we aren't talking about Audio Technica. Although their high end gear leaves alot to be desired for the price.

post #40 of 238

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by ProjectDenz View Post

Am I the only one who sees a lot of well made, yet vastly overpriced products coming out of Japan lately?

 

Care to share a few examples?

post #41 of 238

I wouldn't say they're purely form over function --- their products do still sound excellent. I'd say B&O is form over function. FAD pays more attention to the sound. I happen to think the FI-BA-SS is one of the best universals around. Sure, the W4 is half the price and can almost do everything the FI-BA-SS can do, but the FI-BA-SS is a unique entity that brings a sound matched only by the K3003 in my experience. Plus, it really squeezes every little bit out of that single BA driver. I am not saying that it's a good value, but it is truly a top-tier performer in every sense of the word. To dismiss their products as only design-oriented is a poor assessment, in my opinion, as FAD is very capable of engineering very good sounding products, and they are worth at least a long-term assessment.

 

The other thing is that no one is actually crowning FAD as the holy grail of audio. This is a brand designed and dedicated to the domestic Japanese market; these prices were engineered for the mentality of Japanese collectors, rather than for value-conscious audio enthusiasts. This is especially true with the Piano Forte series, but the Heaven line is priced much more realistically. The Heaven S (FI-BA-SB) is priced on par with its competitors at $400; so is the Heaven A. Only the FI-BA-SS breaks the 1K mark, and it is definitely a halo product that matches up with the K3003. Old-school Lamborghinis like the Miura and Countach were terrible cars in the sense that they would literally attempt to murder their drivers on the track, and temperamentally break down on a whim. However, they were awe-inspiring vehicles whose photographs were hung on the walls of every 12 year-old boy during that time period. FAD is like the Lambo (of old, not the current, Audi-emasculated version) of portable audio, and that is why I have a picture of the FI-BA-SS as my avatar. Yes, I am an unabashed FAD fanboy, and I make no apologies for it.

 

We're also now talking about the Heaven IV here, which is less than $200. Is it going to out perform a similarly-priced DBA-02 MKII or GR01? Probably not, but it should still be a capable performer, and everyone is dismissing it as a ripoff just because it is another product from FAD. Keep in mind that although I'm a big FAD fan, if the Heaven IV's sound doesn't agree with me, I still won't buy it, but I'm prepared to plunk down the dollars if it does sound good.

post #42 of 238

Ahh lets see Sony's higher end models, Final Audio, FitEar. Audio Technica only if you buy those cans sold only in Japan.

post #43 of 238

Originally Posted by kiteki View Post

They've already surpassed the older technology (Etymotic ER-4S / Knowles ED-29689).

In what way? ER4-S is old but far more proven than a lot of the new gimmicky stuff that's coming out again and again. I have heard all the FADs even the SS (though very briefly), I can already tell you that the ER4S has superior imaging and midrange transparency without a nasty spike like the FADs. You need guideline to establish what's better my basis for ability is transparency, which isn't as great as I thought it would have been on the FADs. They do have a crazy transparency in specific treble regions, but the ER4S is more evened out throughout. Also, from your previous posts almost certain, you didn't fit it to the ear's 2nd bend in regards to the ER-4. 


Originally Posted by kiteki View Post

Any company which pioneers it's own drivers deserves respect and admiration.

 

Copying and refining the existing pallette is a limited exercise.

 

There's a reason companies go to Knowles, because neither Sony nor FAD or anyone who tries is going to surpass their vast knowledge in the design, just isn't that easy. It's an admiring approach, but the FADs and Sonys haven't given a true change for superior ability. If anything the XBA line seems to have really flopped and FADs are way overpriced and don't have anything special in their sonics to add to the poor ergonomics. Expectation bias when you listen is also big when you get so caught up in the gimmicks of proprietary drivers. 

 


Edited by Inks - 4/21/12 at 2:01am
post #44 of 238
Quote:
Originally Posted by Inks View Post

In what way? ER4-S is old but far more proven than a lot of the new gimmicky stuff that's coming out again and again. I have heard all the FADs even the SS (though very briefly), I can already tell you that the ER4S has superior imaging and midrange transparency without a nasty spike like the FADs. You need guideline to establish what's better my basis for ability is transparency, which isn't as great as I thought it would have been on the FADs. They do have a crazy transparency in specific treble regions, but the ER4S is more evened out throughout. Also, from your previous posts almost certain, you didn't fit it to the ear's 2nd bend in regards to the ER-4.

 

Just as the ER4 is written off as old hat, the FI-BA-SS doesn't get enough credit. I actually don't sing unwavering endorsements easily, but I will gladly give it to the FI-BA-SS anytime. The thing about the FI-BA-SS is that in the grand scheme of things, it is actually a fairly colored earphone. It's not designed for utmost accuracy, unlike the ER4. IMO, what you heard was that difference. Transparency is debatable. I thought the FI-BA-SS did a great job of adding vocal body and weight without sacrificing transparency at all. The FI-BA-SS's biggest weakness is its ill-defined, under-controlled bass. That will always be my one and only gripe with it.

 

The other thing is that the ED29689 has a natural frequency roll off after 2-3 kHz. It's unavoidable, and no amount of massaging will get it to sound more present beyond what the naturally-limited response is. Luckily, it's good enough for just about everything already, but the ER4 shows a distinct lack of air in the high frequencies. Despite that, I actually do have utmost respect for the ER4S. It it time-tested and true, though in terms of pure technical ability, the K3003 is the best universal I've heard. The FI-BA-SS takes the billing as the most enjoyable high-end universal I've ever heard thus far.

post #45 of 238

Transparency is frequency linearity with an average HRTF in mind, what's debatable is preferences. 

 

SS like the other FADs, do have a loose bass, but an even more offensive treble imo. 

 

The ED29689s roll off is done on purpose, though it's more of a gradual dip than roll-off for the ER4S/B. It's done that way because it coincides with a well established HRTF for utmost tonal linearity. ER4S has plenty of air imo, if you want more I suspect the ER4B will do. Air is hardly a big factor though, it's pretty much just stuff 15k and higher, way past fundamental frequency regions. 


Edited by Inks - 4/21/12 at 3:00am
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