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Tokyo Fujiya Avic Spring (May) 2013 Impressions  

post #1 of 47
Thread Starter 

One day is definitely not enough to cover even half of the show. Thankfully the number of important new products announced came down to the Sure SE846, Centrance M8, Ultrasone Edition 12 and Audiofly IEMs. 

 

Once again, I'd like to thank Fujiya Avic for being so accommodating and Sasaki-san for helping and looking after everyone.

 

More impressions to come once I've had a chance to sleep.

post #2 of 47

It's my first time attending Headphone Festival in Tokyo. My main focus for this event is portable. I saw a lot of nice portable product at the show.

 

The first place that I visited is Fitear. Their new UIEM "Parterre" sound very nice. There are always line of people waiting to try Parterre from start to finish. 

 

There are several new product as Currawong mention. The one that impress me is from SounDroid Typhoon from VentureCraft. It's their new portable DAC/Amp combo that can be use for both iDevice and PC. 

 

post #3 of 47
Quote:
Originally Posted by mtthefirst View Post

It's my first time attending Headphone Festival in Tokyo. My main focus for this event is portable. I saw a lot of nice portable product at the show.

 

The first place that I visited is Fitear. Their new UIEM "Parterre" sound very nice. There are always line of people waiting to try Parterre from start to finish. 

 

There are several new product as Currawong mention. The one that impress me is from SounDroid Typhoon from VentureCraft. It's their new portable DAC/Amp combo that can be use for both iDevice and PC. 

 

The Typhoon seems like a beauty. Did you get any listening time/impressions?

post #4 of 47

There we go!

 

First, many thanks for Sasaki-san & Fujiya Avic for letting us in early, that gave me a good chance to sample the Shure 846 for more than 3 minutes (there litterally were timers on the table to strictly enforce this) without having to lineup. I posted my impressions of the Shure 846 here (it was the first listen of the day): http://www.head-fi.org/t/663180/shure-se846-a-new-in-ear-flagship-from-shure-finally-impressions-p26-28/405#post_9428312 and clarified again they should be taken with a big pinch of salt here: http://www.head-fi.org/t/663180/shure-se846-a-new-in-ear-flagship-from-shure-finally-impressions-p26-28/465#post_9429884

 

The main listening purpose for me was iem so I really didn't sample much gear (nor could I really as I was on tight schedule + so many places being crowded). Because I haven't followed the iems closely in past couple of years, I spent the couple of hours after trying the 846 to hear a few iems I had in mind using the same music and gear (e.g. iphone 5, nothing else).

 

Soon after the 846, I briefly listened to the Shure SE535 to get a feel of the differences between the old and new flagship. In comparison I felt the mids were more prevalent, the bass quantity was just right for me but it was nowhere near as impactful or tight as the 846. Furthermore (driven from the iphone), I felt the highs were shouty in comparison (drums in particular). This is bizarre as I think most agree Shure isn't about shouty mid/highs. So to me, it must be that the 846 is special. Can't say more until I spend more time with them.

 

I managed to try the JHAudio JH13 Pro (freq. phase) and discuss a bit about time alignment with no less than THE man who designed it: Jerry Harvey. It was a cool experience because Jerry is really easy going and friendly to talk to. The hard part was that many Japanese people wanted autographed brochures, TShirts and what not so he was probably more busy signing stuff than getting people to try his gear ;). The impressions are quick: effortless, clean tight/bass (just the right amount for me), no shrillness and a more cohesive image than other stuff I tried on that day. I did not feel there was a left / right image and hole in the center, it was more of natural fill from left to right. I'd say this may be in my future but it's a lot of money in Japan so I am not quite ready psychologically ;).

 

I also listened to the Westone ES5 and I felt again the voicing was just right for me (in the sense of lows/mids/highs balance) but I sensed some lack of bass extension (probably the 846 spoiled me for the day). I am interested in the ES5 because of hybrid mold: a hard resin to prevent busting the drivers / solder joints and make it fully sealed from exterior moisture, while the part in contact with sensitive region of the ear canal gets softer. But at this time, if I was to go custom, I'd chose the JH13 from the short audition I made, because it gives me the good tonal balance of the ES5 and more (for instance no left/right/hole in the center imaging). However, what it boiled down to me is that it was extremely difficulty to tell these two apart from brief listening impressions using the iphone out. It might be the short time, and limited capabilities of the iphone dac/amp but my gut feeling is that these iems are simply in the same high end playground and difference may be in the range of subtle. It's also worth keeping in mind that I tried sampled units with universal tip, which just isn't the way to get the best out of these custom iems...

 

One earphone I tried without planning to before hand is the Etymotic Research ER4p. It's selling for less than 20,000 JPY (so 1/5th or 1/10th of all the other units I tried) and it simply sounded "great" out of the iphone. It was again well balanced although a bit mid-centric. I felt is was limited extension at both ends of the spectrum but that bass was taught and in the right quantity. I liked it was very tiny (they achieve such good sound from a single BA driver). It has been available forever and I've known about it for such a long time (I think I remember seeing it on headroom store over 12-13 years ago before I discovered head-fi ;) ) but never sat down and listen to it. It's done, and I feel it's a great bargain I should have checked long time ago! 

 

I wanted to try the new Canalworks and some FitEar but the people were lining up so I just had to give up. Also wanted to check some 1964 and Miracle from Unique Melody but again didn't have the patience to wait in line. I will probably make a trip to the stores in the future to really have some time to compare. 

 

Last, it was nice to see head-fi friends again even though I couldn't stay there for long and have proper chat. I think we get more chances to sit down and talk during the small meets so it's a matter of getting to it and organizing... Time is the thing I am lacking the most these days but I sure hope we can meet again more often!

 

Arnaud

post #5 of 47
Quote:
Originally Posted by thegrobe View Post

The Typhoon seems like a beauty. Did you get any listening time/impressions?

Yes but they said that it's a prototype. Those were build on Friday. Some functionalities are still missing. They still need to do more tuning. 

 

Based on the prototype, it sound cleaner and clearer than my Go-Dap X with LME49860. Their base model (OP275) already sound good but MUSES01 and OPA627 are even better. Typhoon will probably come equip with OP275 and you can put any OpAmp that you want (DIP8) in it.

post #6 of 47

Did you have a chance to ask about the output impedance? 

Quote:
Originally Posted by mtthefirst View Post

Yes but they said that it's a prototype. Those were build on Friday. Some functionalities are still missing. They still need to do more tuning. 

 

Based on the prototype, it sound cleaner and clearer than my Go-Dap X with LME49860. Their base model (OP275) already sound good but MUSES01 and OPA627 are even better. Typhoon will probably come equip with OP275 and you can put any OpAmp that you want (DIP8) in it.

post #7 of 47
Quote:
Originally Posted by audionewbi View Post

Did you have a chance to ask about the output impedance? 

It's 10 Ω. They can't go lower than that.

post #8 of 47

Fair enough, any price leaks yet? :D
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by mtthefirst View Post

It's 10 Ω. They can't go lower than that.

post #9 of 47
Quote:
Originally Posted by audionewbi View Post

Fair enough, any price leaks yet? :D
 

50000 yen and available mid to late June.

post #10 of 47

I look forward to more impressions!

post #11 of 47

Anybody got a chance to hear the new Fitear Parterre?
 

post #12 of 47
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by klipschman70 View Post

Anybody got a chance to hear the new Fitear Parterre?
 

 

Yes, a few hours ago at the Fujiya Avic store. They were fairly similar to my experience that day with the Tralucent 1+2s. I like them a lot more than the 334s, as they don't have as much bass and the treble seems much clearer. Using a modded AK100, they have a very clear, open and wide sound.  People who like the bass kick might prefer something like the new Sures or the 334s. I would have bought them on the spot if I hadn't ordered JH-13s actually. 

post #13 of 47
Quote:
Originally Posted by Currawong View Post

 

Yes, a few hours ago at the Fujiya Avic store. They were fairly similar to my experience that day with the Tralucent 1+2s. I like them a lot more than the 334s, as they don't have as much bass and the treble seems much clearer. Using a modded AK100, they have a very clear, open and wide sound.  People who like the bass kick might prefer something like the new Sures or the 334s. I would have bought them on the spot if I hadn't ordered JH-13s actually. 

Similar to the 1plus2, as in the huge expansive soundstage or s in frequency response or both. The Parterre are cheaper right and also look to have a better build quality. If you think they have more prominent mids and slightly less bass (and of course the awesome soundstage) than the 1plus2 count me as very interested!

post #14 of 47

Although the text is Japanese, Phileweb has a number of posts on the event with photos:

 

春のヘッドホン祭2013

post #15 of 47
Quote:
Originally Posted by gkanai View Post

Although the text is Japanese, Phileweb has a number of posts on the event with photos:

 

春のヘッドホン祭2013

Pictures speak a 1000 words! Thanks for the link, am enjoying a browse now!

 

Some of the pictures are wrongly titles perhaps.

 

Anyway i see the Jl Acoustics Labs Balanced Amps there (i have a proto) and i hope people have checked them out as they are super fantastic!

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