ProGuard P2+1 CIEM discussion and appreciation thread with review in progress.
Review in Progress: ProGuard P2+1 custom IEM review: On stage
ProGuard Hearing Protection is a part of Sensorcom Ltd run by Rob and Richard (ex–Garwood, original manufacturer of IEM radio systems), both with around 25 years of audio and hearing protection experience. The P2+1 was launched around 10 months ago, designed for the gigging musician. They felt many CIEMs lacked good low end response which is how they ended up with the driver configuration of the P2+1, which is a dual low and single high driver. They auditioned quite a few triple driver configurations, but for them this configuration worked and they thought the retail price point was right for a 3 driver system.
Designed for stage use, the P2+1 has some competition in the UK from a few other companies such as Minerva, ACS, and Puretone among others, but as far as I know, the P2+1 is has the lowest cost for a triple driver CIEM. Since it is made primarily for musicians, the focus is performance vs. looks and artwork, and we shall see if these provide a good price/performance level.
How to Order & Options
The P2+1 is £300 ($467) without impressions and £320 ($500) with impressions (for UK customers only), plus customers in European Union pay an additional 20% tax. Shipping charges are included. The order process is started by placing an order online and paying via PayPal or credit card, registering your serial number, and then if you are in the UK, making an audiologist appointment. You can find their audiologists here. If you are outside the UK, you will need to send impressions in.
Options: Faceplate colors: black, beige, red, blue and translucent.
The warranty period is 1 year and they keep your impressions on file for 2 years.
The P2+1 uses dual balanced armature drivers for the low frequencies and single driver for 2K Hz and above. The shell is acrylic with flush mounted jacks for a detachable cable.
Frequency Response: 20 - 18000Hz
Impedance: 20Ω @ 1kHz nominal
Crossover: Passive @ 2kHz
Connector: 3.5 mm stereo jack plug
Cable: Detachable 1.5m - Kevlar Reinforced PU 2 Pin Gold Plated Earphone Connectors
Transducer: Dual LF Balanced Armature Driver + Single HF Balanced Armature Driver
Colour: Black, Beige, Red, Blue, White and Translucent
Delivery includes: Faux leather storage pouch, Cleaning Tool and Earmould fitting gel.
Faux leather storage pouch, Cleaning Tool and Earmould fitting gel. The carrying case is compact and easy to take anywhere, but doesn’t provide the crush-proof protection of a Pelican or Otterbox case.
The cable is detachable, 1.5m long, Kevlar reinforced cable with 2 pin gold plated earphone connectors. The cable is silver but isn’t a typical twisted cable, but is a coated cable and is very supple. The silver will not discolor over time and the ergonomics are good, much better than other cables I have tested of this type, and the memory effect is low. This cable also seems a bit more durable than the standard twisted cables.
Once inserted into the ear the P2+1 will give up to 25dB of sound. The P2+1 scores a 5/10 on my scale, offering average isolation for a acrylic shelled CIEM.
Preliminary Sound Summary
The P2+1 has a stage monitor sound tuning, with a forward presentation that puts you on stage with the musicians. The sound is a bit on the thicker side, which has been the case with just about every musician’s tuned IEM/CIEM I have heard. Even with the thickness, there is a nice clarity in the midrange, however it isn’t as clear as the brighter sounding CIEMs such as the Ambient Monitors AM4 pro. Bass is present and has good power and rumble, besting the other BA CIEMs I have heard in the price range (up to the $565 aud-5X). The coherence across the frequency spectrum is excellent and imaging is quite good with good detailing for the price point.
The overall size is not small, but it isn’t the biggest, with more depth and height than width. The upper midrange is forward, at least with higher end sources, which really accentuates details, but the thickness gives body and richness to the presentation so it doesn’t seem analytical. While both male and female vocals sound true to tone for the most part, female vocals are rendered better and are quite good.
The P2+1 does OK with my Clip+, but from my iPhone 5 and higher impedance sources such as the Nova don’t sound great. Moving up the amp ranks does pay dividends in improving the finer performance attributes of the P2+1.
Note: This sound summary is preliminary. The sound summary may change, at least to an extent after I have done all review listening. Please feel free to ask questions about the P2+1.