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Audiofly AF180 Performance Series Impression&Appreciation Thread

post #1 of 31
Thread Starter 

I'm not exactly sure how long these have been out but wasn't able to find a thread about them.

I was offered a pair of AF180 for reviewing here in Korea and I thought it would be nice to share and talk about it here on head-fi as well.

 

Presenting Audiofly's latest "Performance Series" quad balance armature universal fit stage monitor in-ears. AF180.

 

 

 

Specifications

Driver: Quad BA driver

Frequency Range: 15Hz ~ 25kHz

Impedance: 18Ohm

Sensitivity: 108dB @ 1Hz

Cable length: 1.6m

Plug: Right angle 3.5mm gold plated

 

Packaging

I really really liked the packaging for these. I think it may just be the best packaging design I have ever seen for in-ears.

 

 

 

 

 

Accessories

-Comply foam tips (They look like T-200)

-Dome silicone Tips

-Triple flange silicone tips

-Quarter inch gender jack

-Cleaning tool

-Airline gender jack

-Storage wallet

 

 

 

 

 

Wow. I think this is the sexiest case I have ever seen in my life. Real soft brown leather with a vintage look to it. Although I am currently using an Otterbox drybox series for my in ears at the moment, I might just carry these around because they look so nice. Smell nice too lol.

 

Build and Features

I felt that AF had invested a large amount of time and consideration into their performance series design and features. A lot of small details I have never seen in any other in-ear design. Without losing any points in it's luxury look, AF's design is very practical and durable.

 

 

Right angle plug with AF logo engraved

 

 

This cable is constructed from extremely durable 'Cordura' fabric. Same materials used in outdoor wear and in military combat uniforms.

The twisted cable you see connects up to the ear guides and the mmcx plug which AF calls 'Soundpatch.'

 

 

 

 

 

By the connector part, you can see the Braille dots on the ear guide. I don't have to worry about getting the wrong side in if ever become visually impaired!

It's very thoughtful and creative of them to consider into their design.

As you can see in the photo, there is a little bump on the mmcx connector.

When detaching the cable, all you have to do is twist and the mmcx connectors with unlock and come off easily.

When attaching, you just match that little bump and snap them together.

Very simple and effective.

As you can see there is a thread on the nozzle and this allows the tips to stay on well and removed easily when you 'unscrew' the tips off the nozzle.

 

 

 

 

At first, I thought the ear guides were too stubborn as they would not take shape. After fidgeting with a bit longer, I realized they do have a firmness to it and you have to force the shape into it and over-bend it.

 

Comfortability

The AF180 has just raised the bar for me. Previously, the ASG-2 were the most comfortable universals I have ever tried but now it's these. They fit so well like they were designed specifically for my ears. Oh wow, I was just so surprised on it's ergonomic design. I didn't know universals could be this comfortable. The great fit allows great isolation as well with the tip that best fits your ears. Everything is ten out of ten in this department.

 

I really like my T-Peos silicone tips so I did a tip mod from monster tip kit to fit them on as they have a larger core size.

 

 

 

 

Sound

The overall sound signature of the AF180 are on the natural and warm side. I pictured a green hill with the warm sun giving the grass an orange tint.

  CREATOR: gd-jpeg v1.0 (using IJG JPEG v80), quality = 97

Something like this.

It is overall warm but has that hilltop breeze that is refreshing. That refreshing breeze is the treble. Some may feel a 10kHz spike but I like how it sounds now. Highhats and cymbals come across very naturally and detailed to me. I did however notice a dip somewhere around the 6kHz region. So the upper vocal range may sound veiled making the vocals sound a little nasally. The mids are strong and as stage monitors, the guitars were most easily heard in the various band genres that I auditioned them with. The lower mids to bass regions are turned up a lot more with amazing speed and impact. Rhythm part musicians will love this. I felt that it was faster and hit harder than the latest multi ba iem that I've tried which was the Roxanne. This does not mean in anyway that the bass is exaggerated but rather more of how it sounds like on stage. However, this region being turned up gives the sound signature a 'hollow' feel or like a feeling that music is being heard in somewhat a tunnel. It goes great with music that has reverb as it becomes a plus to the imaging and soundstage. Speaking of soundstage, I felt that it was larger than the SM64 which is well known to having a large soundstage. However, instrument separation is not as good.

 

As a stage monitor, I felt that Audiofly has taken the comments and suggestions from musicians under a lot of consideration like they said they did. Having done a lot of stage performances and monitoring as an amateur, I felt that these were very appropriate as stage monitors from listening to my dap but not sure if that opinion would change if I had used them on stage first hand. I would very much like to if in my next chance to perform. Starting from the long 1.6m cable to be more comfortable while performing with an instrument to it's durability and sound, it would serve any performing artist effectively. Those that want something like the SE846 but don't have the gold, I would highly recommend this pair.


Edited by jonyoo - 6/22/14 at 7:41pm
post #2 of 31
Thread Starter 

Impressions and thoughts added.

post #3 of 31

Hi Guys, New to this forum. Currently own a SE846 and the AF78. No matter how much better the SE846 was in comparison to the AF78 in terms of technicality. I'm finding the warmness of the AF78 to be incredibly sweet and addictive. I hope the AF180 retains that signature warm-melodic texture as the AF78! 

post #4 of 31
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by kaoticice View Post
 

Hi Guys, New to this forum. Currently own a SE846 and the AF78. No matter how much better the SE846 was in comparison to the AF78 in terms of technicality. I'm finding the warmness of the AF78 to be incredibly sweet and addictive. I hope the AF180 retains that signature warm-melodic texture as the AF78! 

Those three are all at very different price ranges. Haven't been able to try the AF78 but I assure you the AF180 is something.

post #5 of 31

Audiofly is a fairly idiosyncratic little company - I own the AF56's - and probably won't sell them... For an IEM with a 13mm driver, you'd think it was going to be a bass cannon - but no - it has nice forward mids and clear highs... bass is tight...  not what you'd expect. But boy was it muddy out of the box....

post #6 of 31
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ivabign View Post
 

Audiofly is a fairly idiosyncratic little company - I own the AF56's - and probably won't sell them... For an IEM with a 13mm driver, you'd think it was going to be a bass cannon - but no - it has nice forward mids and clear highs... bass is tight...  not what you'd expect. But boy was it muddy out of the box....

Anything like the other models in it's series? I have the AF45 but have't got around to opening them up yet haha. 

post #7 of 31

At different points in time I've owned the first 3 levels of Audiofly earphones.  The 33 series was outright poor, thin sounding and not competitive with modern budget IEMs.  The 45 series was good for it's Amazon price.  It didn't do anything spectacularly well but it wasn't flawed in a noticeable way (provided you enjoyed a typical consumer bass heavy sound).  The 56 series was very good, it has a nice musical quality and was the first IEM I gave to my girlfriend.  She liked it very much and used it for a few months until one of the housings split.  I applied glue but it eventually split again and I upgraded her to an RE-400.  With better build quality the 56 would be worth it's Amazon price.

 

I like the looks of the new Audiofly multi-ba drivers but I'm not willing to risk that great an expense until I have a better idea of construction quality.  Thank-you for the review.

post #8 of 31

So far the AF78 has faired pretty well in durability. The only gripe so far is that the cable fibres are ever slightly peeling off . I've used it on my frequent runs and general commute to work, but then again i've only had it for a few months.

post #9 of 31
Thread Starter 

Wow thanks for featuring this!

post #10 of 31

wish for more detailed comparison between it and sm64

post #11 of 31

Very nice impression.  Can you give some comparison vs ASG-2?  Thank you for your time.


Edited by Twinster - 6/27/14 at 5:02pm
post #12 of 31

Nice! Any comparisons to the ASG-2?

post #13 of 31
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Twinster View Post
 

Very nice impression.  Can you give some comparison vs ASG-2?  Thank you for your time.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by nehcrow View Post
 

Nice! Any comparisons to the ASG-2?

 

 

It has been some time since I returned the review unit of the ASG-2. The most obvious things I can compare is that it is not as bright and sibilant as the ASG-2. The highs will sound colder, transparent, and a bit more sparkely up top on the ASG-2. AF180 turned it's focused towards the mids to lower mids being more full and lush which I feel contributes greatly it's superior soundstage. Some might say that the ASG-2 is more versatile with it's bass port control, but I prefer the AF180's bass in every way. The bass coming from the AF180 is faster coming across with better detail and texture than the ASG-2's bass whether the bass port is closed, open, or open midway.

 

On physical features, both of them are well designed, comfortable, and isolate more than adequately but I felt the AF180 was slightly more ergonomic and the overall build quality much better considering all the small things like the cable material, connectors, overall finish and such.


Edited by jonyoo - 7/6/14 at 11:30pm
post #14 of 31

I ordered these direct from Audiofly last week and I received them today before work.

 

I had the Shure SE535's in the entire time I was sleeping and was listening to Paper Planes by Alison Krauss and Union Station (96k/24b FLAC on my FiiO X5). It was already decided that the Shures weren't my cuppa tea and I already lined up their RMA.

 

I put the Audiofly AF180's on and I immediately liked them more. A lot more.

 

Right away, they are more comfortable, offer better texture in the mids and bass while retaining the warmth and, most importantly, they don't have that treble roll-off. The highs are very well detailed, sparkly and extend right past 20 kHz. Where the SE535's would be too harsh on Norah Jones' "Don't Know Why" when she emphasizes the beginning of each phrase, the AF180's are bright without being overbearing.

 

I'll try to do some A-B testing before I send the Shures packing, but I already know I've found the IEMs I have been looking for.

post #15 of 31

I wrote a review for the AF180's:

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