Rhapsodio v3 review
Rhapsodio, a local brand base in Hong Kong, which enables me to pop up their shop and try out their entire demo selection they have available, include some of their more popular model, RDB v1+, RDB+ 2V1. I consider myself lucky to meet this v3 model which occurs at the start of May, since I saw a pair of demo next to Sammy desk, and I was surprise with the sound signature when I first listen to it. Its performance is beyond the all other demo I have tried from Rhapsodio and at that time I was told that v3 has just completed its development phase, but its sonic characteristic strike me from my heart and I simply cannot resist the temptation to order one immediately.
Although this v3 is a hybrid model just like the two other model they have to offer, but there are two distinctive different between:
1. It has 1DD 3BA design, rather than the usual 1DD 2BA design most hybrid in the market.
2. The drivers are ‘massive’, which nearly consume all the spaces which the acrylic shell can house.
3. The sound tube design is different to the other hybrid that is offer in the market, which I would explain later in this review.
I have this CM for a while now and tried it all the gears which I possess in my arsenal, but the choice of gear I would use for this review:
Player: colorfly c4 (BTL balance mod)
Amp: meji cool4
Cable: original cable, yy pro audio energy/aspire earphone cable (balance plug), sparkle/HST 3.5-3.5 jumper
All the music which I listen is 16/44.1 which are rip from cd by the use of jet audio.
When I first try it after the run-in phase, I was immediately surprise with the bass, not by its quantity but its quality, and the way it handles the music with great clarity. But it is somewhat fatigue to listen to after a period of time, however this sense if fatigue reduces after a period of time, I suppose it is something which takes time to get used to?
A Rhapsodio offer varies colour and shell plate for potential user to choose, but I chose something simple for this v3, I told simply Sammy I want a glass like purple. And I was extremely surprise when I received the v3, which is around a month wait. The shell was flawless, very good finishing, with a slight bump on the faceplate near the air vent. The color are even and transparent, the components are clearly seen from the shell, which makes it extremely eye catching in my opinion. The air vent is different to other hybrid cm from rhapsodio, its mount onto the faceplate, and hold by a white tube along with a small filter at the inner end of the tube. There are two sound tubes in total, one from the DD and the other from BA drivers, each with its own filter inside each sound tube. The sound tubes end just before the second bend of the ear canal and merge into one after that point, which Sammy told me it was done on purpose as part of tuning of the v3.
The v3 is definitely larger and heavier than some other cm, like the heir audio 4a which I also possess. The fit is good, with no pain when wearing it and fatigue free after hours wearing it.
It comes in with the blue braided cable & dolphin box. The blue cable is somewhat different to the ‘standard’ cable which other CM has to offer with its 4 twist design, but it is a stiff to use. However, it has connection problem on the left ear, and therefore I cannot make review on this cable.
The dolphin box is different what other brand usually offer, like the pelican box. But it’s a very tough case with strong joint, which seems to be design to last. It is fasten by two buckles one on each side, and it does not have pressure release valve like the pelican case. But the large capacity will enable it to house a few cm and cable at the same time, which makes it great for long term traveling, where user might prefer to bring more than one in ear monitor for their journey.
The v3 has received 100+ hours of run-in by running it with a range of different types of music and no major listening until 100+ hours run in. This is to avoid any argument about the run-in debate and allows the v3 to achieve its optimum performance.
The dynamic driver enables the v3 to possess a dynamic yet airy. The amount of bass stands out a notch from the mid and the high regions. With its punchy bass, it feels like every beat is punching on my chest with great detail, something which BA drivers cannot achieve in my opinion.
The amount of bass is surprisingly less than most other hybrid I have listened to, less of a BOOM, BOOM, POW feel but with the additional of quality and detail in the bass region.
The Midrange is slightly laid back from the bass from time to time, depends on the music it is running. And the vocal are able to achieve great soundstage, I am amazed on how ‘open’ it is. And with its characteristic of a slow roll on and slightly fast on the roll off, which makes it enjoyable on varies types of music. Its clarity also enables me to hear every detail crystal clear. Despite all the advantages, the amount of vocal may not be the cup of tea for everyone, some people might believe the vocal offer is too laidback and small in terms of portion.
The BA drivers produce a smooth treble which is something great to listen, along with delicate amount of sparkle. But it does not have a high extension on the treble, which is somewhat a problem in some of the song I listen to, where the treble cannot be fully extended in some songs, Which I consider as a bit dark in the sound signature and the treble is somewhat over run by the bass, not able to shine with glory when compare to the bass region.
The soundstage is not too wide but full in terms of body, the details are more compact then some other CM, but the overall soundstage is not dynamic enough, a bit flat in my opinion. But the amount of detail throughout the soundstage is tremendous, along with the accurate instrument and detail layering, which is enjoyable to listen, especially for classical music.
The sound signature of the v3 reminds me of my heir audio 4a, both I possess in the form of CM. both CM possess neutral like sound signature. But the v3 is somewhat more flat in the midrange and treble, and more dynamic and punchy in the bass region, which stands out from those regions. However, heir audio 4a lacks the quantity and quality of bass, but it possesses splendid performance in terms of clarity and accuracy, where the v3 cannot match.
After listening to many hybrid earphones the market has to offer, both for iem and cm. I believe the rhapsodio v3 is a successful in terms of its unique tuning, especially with its dynamic and airy bass.
I would highly recommend this earphone to audiophile who are seeking neutral like sound signature hybrid in ear monitor with a spice on the bass region, a sound signature where only hybrid can offer.
Edited by terry1109 - 8/12/13 at 1:53am