Here is an early impressions.
I just got my GR07 Bass Edition yesterday and out of the box i would say I wasn't impressed. The mid bass was leaking into the mids and highs sounded artificial. Vocals were cold and uninspiring even from my Rocoo P. I was A/B-ing with my BA200 and for sure, the BA200s win by a mile in terms of clarity, soundstage and overall presentation. However, the GR07 wins in terms of bass impact and dynamism.
I also compared it to my MH1C which I purchased along with the GR07s and right out of the box I would say, the MH1C wasn't all that bad. They have some similarities that made me feel like the GR07s were overpriced in comparison
In fact, I was so impressed with the MH1C, that I started doing my own research about them. (More on that on the MH1C thread). The MH1C, although a lot more bass-heavy, did not have the mid bass hump that the GR07s have. In fact, vocals sounded more impressive on the sony's compared to the GR07s. They were natural, clear and very warm. Perhaps one of the warmest sounding IEMs I have heard.
That was within the first hour of my unboxing, but things have changed
I was having buyer's remorse about the GR07s so I decided to hookup my E10 to my torrent rig and leave the GR07s hooked up playing "Woofer Cooker" in loops at nominal volume for about 8 hours. When I decided to have a listen, things changed, and oh boy was I surprised.
Listening to the same music when I unboxed the GR07s, I would say the bass were a bit more under control and tighter. The mid bass hump was greatly reduced, and the highs were tamed (Still a little bit metallic) but improved.
What struck me is that the vocals now sound more involving, lively and believe it or not, warm! (not as warm as the MH1C, but warmer than it was before the burn in) No more muddiness and congestion. It was clear and very natural.
Guitars sounds also improved, so did the pianos. Drums were amazing (Well the drums were actually impressive out of the box)
Now...A/B-ing with the BA200s.....The GR07 opened up in terms of soundstage and depth. There was more room between the listener and the music and things didn't sound as congested and tightly packed. There was an improved sense of air, instrument separation was also improved a bit. (or at least I think it was)
Compared to the MH1C, well, I have been very skeptical about the concept of "burn-in" but I can't deny that the MH1C now sounds different and the GR07s are more impressive in terms of clarity and vocal performance. Not by much, but noticeable. Keep in mind, this was just after only an 8 hour burn in time with some very heavy bass mp3s.
Could this be a consumer's defense mechanism to avoid buyer's remorse? Maybe. But I am not one who would stick to something I didn't like and will not force myself into liking something for the sake of holding on. If I don't like it, I would sell it or give it away. Clearly this is not the case for the GR07s.
I would say the burn-in for GR07 is more than placebo. A lot of people may say its your brain adjusting, but like I said, I left them playing on top of a table for 8 hours without listening in between. For those who think right of of the box, the GR07 Bass Edition are unimpressive, give it a few hours of burn in (300 as recommended). Hopefully, they will mature and "grow" on you, as mine did.
Now, that's after 8 hours....let's see how much more they will improve after the 300 hour mark.
I will update this post after a few weeks.1st update: 100 hours burn in
Got to the first 100th and change is minimal. The highs are smoother and I hear less grain. Bass bleed has been reduced and male vocals are more coherent and natural. Both minimal, but still noticeable improvements. Female vocals are now absolutely amazing. No change in soundstage and imaging and I think it hit the plateau, and no further improvement is expected. The first 8 hours maxed it both vertically and in width.
Side note...the bass has become boomy...for some reason. Which is the most prominent change on the 1st 100 hour. I sure hope this changes because it's becoming a nuisance2nd update: 108 hours into burn in
Bass bleed is back, this time with a vengeance
I certainly hope this is just a phase. Or it's just my ears, i dont know...
Whatever it is, I am enjoying the sound, and the burn in journey. I am sorry if I confuse people, hoping in time, this journal will help map the burn in process. I am trying my best to describe the experience. Hope this journal is helping more than it is confusing.
and I am sorry if I stir any emotions or confuse the would-be buyer. 3rd update: 125 hours
At the 125 hour mark. Now this is something worth mentioning. I have an MH1C which is a little harder to drive and I usually set the volume to 18 on my Rocoo P to get to my normal listening level. With the 07s, out of the box, I set it to 15 or 16 to get to the same level. Now, after burn in, the 07s seems to be as power hungry as the MH1C and I notice at the same volume level, they now match in terms of loudness. Of course I have been running the MH1C through its burn in stages also and may very well have changed. But that's just an observation and a pretty obvious change I might add.4th update: 350 hours - Full Review
This is going to be my 100th post and I wanted use it doing my review of the Gr07 bass edition By this time, they have about 350 hours on them and should be past the recommended burn in time.
Out of the box, I was almost sorry I made the purchase. They were dark, congested and the total opposite of smooth. The midbass bleed was too apparent that vocals sounded nasal and overly thick. I purchased the MH1C at the same time and was thinking they sound better than the GR07s. So I decided to put the GR07 though a 300 hour burn in process so the drivers can settle and my brain can adjust.
15 days later:
Well over 300 hours of burn in, I can now say they have opened up quite a bit.
To me, they are bass heavy. Sub bass is quite impressive and I can easily hear rumble with 808s and synthetic bass on a few tester tracks. I just love listening to "Woofer Cooker and "Can't Hold Us Down" by Christna Agiulera. Impact is more than enough to make your head bob with some rnb and club music. Equally, they add a little bit of fun factor with rock music and some heavy metal tracks. drums have realistic attack and dynamics. But the drivers are also fast enough that it doesn't sound congested even on bass heavy tracks. Decay is just right that everything seems so, alive. Bass bleed is minimal. They do reach into the mids and add body to vocals and other midbass instruments, but just enough that it doesn't sound muddy. Beware though that this, for me, is borderline. Even the slightest boost in this midbass emphasis can kill the midrange and upset the tonality. Personally, I find it just a little too bass heavy for jazz and classical music. They are, however, perfect for RNB Rock and pop songs and are easily one of the most accurate, fun, bass-ey IEMs.
Mids are just wonderful. Since the 07s have a slightly U shaped signature, the mids are not as forward as the bass but in no way are they recessed. It does, however, have ample amount of body due partly to the bass bleed. Vocals come alive and are well textured. A good track to test would be "Biggest Part of Me" by David Pack from the "Secret of Moving On" album. When the backround vocals come in and sing "Sunlight", it just feels so lively and involving. Pianos and female vocals are portrayed beautifully also with Diana Krall's "A Case of You" from the Live in Paris album. Mid detail is also impressive. I remember picking up nuances from my RE0 and I can pick them up just as easily with the Gr07.
Treble to me are not the 07's strong suite, but that's not saying they are bad. Even with the Bass Edition, I can hear a little bit of sibilance, but nothing close to my old GR01's. The U shape signature adds a bit of emphasis to the treble which by the way extends fairly high. In my opinion though, the 07's deliver the highs just to enhance the mids, but not to be praised by itself. These are not treble focused nor are they designd to be analytical. The treble is enough to help with above average resolution, (try and listen as singers breathe-in after each line) but falls short compared to the RE0 and the younger brother, the GR01, which in my opinion, two of the best IEM in terms of treble reproduction. Sparkle is present, but a bit dry due to lack of real airiness. They are not dark sounding IEMs per se, neither are they bright. To my ears, they are just right its just not a treble-focused IEM.
Soundstage and Speed:
Nothing too impressive. They are designed to be stage monitors and presentation is quite intimate. Soundstage is just a little above average. Speed is also above average, considering these have dynamic drivers, I would say they are fast enough that they won't skip a beat and portray music accurately, but nothing to say "wow" about.
Overall sound quality and one more special thing:
Individually, the most impressive thing about the 07's are the bass. They have been tuned to provide not just quantity, but quality. The mids will come in at a close second, delivering some of the most vivid and lively vocals with one of the most natural timbre of all the IEMs I've owned. But more than the individual sound spectrum and characteristics, its the overall combination of these that set the GR07 apart from any other IEM at its price range. They are the top of the line from Vsonic and by all means, one of the best in terms of sound quality. Accurate, natural sounding, dynamic and resolving. They are fun and engaging, able to provide hours and hours of musical enjoyment without the slightest hint of fatigue. The very special thing about them apart from their top tier sound quality is that they are so comfortable that you forget you are wearing them.
I would recommend them to anyone looking for an upgrade from your $100 IEM, or even as part of a starter kit for the would-be audiophile. Note though that although they sound fantastic, they are anything but out of the box. I highly recommend both driver and brain burn in to let its sound signature settle and sink in. You may regret buying as i once did, but after about 300 hours, you will start to appreciate how amazing these really are. You may ask me now how they compare against the MH1C that sounded better pre-burn in? Well, I can honestly say, the MH1C had some pretty amazing wow factor that probably lasted 1 week. The GR07s are definitely at the high end bracket and are designed for longer use. They don't have the same wow factor as the Sony's but I would go with long term relationships over love at first sight anytime.
I give them 8.9/10 in sound quality. (If not for the midbass emphasis, I would give them at least a 9.2)Edited by Annafrancesca - 12/16/12 at 1:20pm