New Head-Fier
Zero, one year later...
Pros: Excellent build quality
Good cable
Bass performance
Cons: Some may find it bulky
It has now been a year since these IEMs were introduced. Do they survive to the present day?
I won't repeat points concerning accessories and build quality, as there is plenty to go over and we know a lot about it. I'll just say that for the price, all these points are really good.


The unboxing is similar to the KZ experiences.



For the source of this review I will use the well-known iBasso DC03 Pro.

Technical specifications: Given the features, it could be said to be a relatively difficult device to move. I don't want to say that you need a nuclear reactor but using it in your mobile phone, you won't get the full potential out of it. However, a basic dongle is more than enough to give it that boost.
Instrumental separation is always good considering what you are paying for. The soundstage is pretty average, not intimate at all but it can't be praised for the way it performs either.
The image may not be as holographic but it does stand out more than other iems I have tested.

  • Balanced signature, analytical side imo.

Bass: Well controlled bass. It gives you an adequate punch but if you are a bass head, look somewhere else. However, those with a more educated ear will find the bass tastes good as it offers a good energy that overall makes it a very versatile pair. If the bass is rhythmic, the presentation will be adequate. The same is the case with mid-bass.

Mid bass: it extends quite well into the lower frequencies. I recommend this headphone for those who are not looking for a big rumble, but don't want to completely fizzle out. Do you want a mid-bass cannon? Look elsewhere

Midranges: well there is a good amount of detail, although the focus is on macro contrast and not so much on miniscule nuances. Either way there is a good resolution in their presentation. The female voices, in my perspective, show a bit more energy, on the other hand, the male voices don't lag that far behind either.
When it comes to instruments, they sound very natural. The guitars sound full-bodied enough, which is important for metal music. Do you want clarity in the guitars? You'll find here.

It's not all rosy, the high mids can be a bit emphatic in certain songs. To control this, I found the eartips with the narrow hole quite useful. It is not a totally harsh earphone but I understand that some people are sensitive to these frequencies. With a moderate volume, we will also manage to control this problem.

Treble: Good amount of detail with sufficient, but not excellent performance. Well, that's about it. Violins, trumpets sound very natural. It is safe behaviour. There will be those who feel fatigued by the quantity offered by the Salnotes. For my personal taste, I would prefer other options in the same price range.


The Zeros prove to be a very good choice for their price range but with a tendency to fail in high midrange range. I understand this point is mostly a personal preference and opinions may change. Even today, their sound is still relevant and interesting. I highly recommend them, of course, if you are interested in the sound they provide.
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K othic

New Head-Fier
After the hype: 7HZ Salnotes Zero Review
Pros: Exceptional timbre
Good accessories
Non-fatiguing tuning for long listening sessions
Versatility across various genres
Wide and deep soundstage
Cons: Below-average imaging
Slightly lacking midbass presence (subjective)
Recorte foto portada.jpg

The acclaimed 7HZ Salnotes Zero are IEMs with a single dynamic driver per side that shook the IEM market a few months ago, receiving support from top reviewers and being highly recommended by many users for their excellent performance at a more than acceptable price ($20 USD).
Video Review here
If you wish to read this review in spanish, click here

Unboxing, Build and Comfort
The box is simple but expected in this price segment. Like in most cases, upon opening it, we find the pair of headphones, and underneath them, two small bags: one with the 2 pin 0.78mm cable and another with 5 extra pairs of silicone tips.

Recorte caja auris.jpg

The construction of the IEM itself feels cheap. The 10mm driver with a metal composite diaphragm is protected by a plastic molded housing and a metal faceplate with the brand and model inscriptions. A positive aspect of this type of construction is the variety of colors offered for this model, with a total of 6 options: white, black, light blue, red, pink, and orange.


Moving on to the cable, it is quite good for the price. It has good flexibility, doesn't tangle easily, and has a straight 3.5mm connector, relieving the tension at the cable termination point compared to "L-shaped" connectors. As negative points for this cable, it is slightly microphonic when it rubs against clothing, and the plastic ear guides may be uncomfortable for some.

Copia auris y accesorios.jpg

Regarding the silicone tips, I was surprised by the quantity included (6 pairs, counting the ones already on the IEMs). Some of these are "wide bore" tips like the orange ones (which retain better bass and treble frequencies), while others have a narrow bore like the light blue ones (which reduce treble frequencies without affecting the bass, resulting in increased bass emphasis).

Lastly, the comfort of these headphones was excellent from day one. I always used them with the small-sized (S) orange tips, and both the shape of the IEM and those tips contributed to an exceptional seal in my outer ear. They are so lightweight and comfortable that I can wear them for hours without needing to readjust them. They are a great option for anyone needing peace in noisy environments.

Frequency response description

7hz graph.png

Credits: crinacle.com
  • Deep sub-bass extension and well-presented bass
  • Smooth transition from bass to the mids
  • Mid frequencies following almost strictly the Harman target
  • Laid back but airy treble with good extension
Subjective sound description

The sub-bass has a lot of authority, as demonstrated in songs like "Xanny" by Billie Eilish and "Hot In It" by Tiesto. The sensation of "rumble" in these and other songs is very good, and the sub-bass can be felt in the chest.

On the other hand, the bass frequencies (>50-60 Hz to 200 Hz) are slightly lacking for my taste, as evidenced in EDM songs like "Follow" by Martin Garrix. However, this prevents the bass frequencies from "bothering" the mid frequencies and allows for a smooth transition between them.

I listened to several different singers to have a good reference for this frequency range. Freddie Mercury, Billie Eilish, Adele, and Calamaro - all these artists sounded correct here.

Both male and female voices are reproduced naturally with more than adequate presence, although female voices have a slightly more authoritative presence, as I heard in "Vivere" where Bocceli sings together with Gerardina Trovato.

The articulation between the different instruments and voices occupying this range is very good, without any interference or "disturbance" between them at any moment.

In general, the high frequencies may leave something to be desired for those who prefer a brighter and more detailed tuning. However, this is a very positive aspect for long listening sessions, where this IEM will reproduce the entire music library with exceptional musicality. In "Black Magic" by Slayer (Live Undead), the drummer's cymbal in the first 30 seconds is never offensive to the ear and has good presence. In "Revelations" by Iron Maiden, the variety of cymbals played by the drummer during the guitar solos have a gentle presence without being aggressive or overly bright.

The timbre of these headphones is something that other companies should take note of. I understand that it's not a bold tuning as it follows the Harman curve, but the instruments are so well represented that despite not being the best IEM in terms of resolution/detail, they can be compared to others that are far above their price range thanks to the excellent execution of timbre. All the instruments in Vivaldi's "Winter: Allegro non Molto" - performed by Fabio Biondi - are excellently distinguished from each other, from the lead violinist to the cellos and double bass accompanying the rest of the violins.

Soundstage & Imaging
As mentioned earlier in the frequency response description, the soundstage or spatiality of the sound is above average. Songs like Iron Maiden's "The Great Unknown" and Queen's "Bicycle Race" reveal that these headphones have a wide soundstage that can be deep when needed. In the latter mentioned song, a well-crafted three-dimensional scene is created, placing all the backing vocals and drums behind Freddie, with one of the cymbals having a distinct presence located behind and to the right during the chorus.

Regarding imaging, this is one of the few weak points I see in the Zeros. In Calamaro's "Alta Suciedad," it's difficult for me to discern between the guitars playing on the right and left channels. The same occurs during the introduction of the Iron Maiden song mentioned in the previous paragraph.

7HZ Salnotes Zero vs KZ DQ6
I decided to make a brief comparison between these two models as they are both in the same price range internationally and in Argentina (Price: $20 USD for any of them)
7hz vs DQ6.png

Credits: crinacle.com
  • The DQ6 has more punch and rumble due to a more pronounced elevation in the bass frequencies. They are comparable in the sub-bass range, with the Zero having slightly better extension in this range.
  • The more "correct" transition between the bass and mids makes vocals and instruments sound a bit more natural on the 7HZ compared to the DQ6.
  • The high frequencies are two opposite poles in my experience: the DQ6 has bright highs at times that help create a sense of detail but may have some small sibilance, while the Zero has more relaxed/dark highs that are not as detailed but contribute to its musicality.
  • In terms of timbre, there is no competition; the 7HZ Zero has achieved a better tuning in this aspect.
It is quite obvious that this is a product easy to recommend: good comfort, impeccable tuning for the price, a good amount of accessories of respectable quality for $20 USD. The few negative points I mentioned during my analysis clearly are not enough to lower this product from the pedestal it deserves to be on.


100+ Head-Fier
“Cheap Doesn’t mean Bad”
Pros: Detailed and smooth sounding
Comfortable fit
Nice 2 pin removable cable.
Cons: No case included.
7hz is a company that I find sometimes I enjoy their products, and at other times I don’t. They do some great work, but I’m not always confident in everything as the Salnotes Dioko left me bored and a little sad. Surprisingly this iem doesn’t disappoint, and I’m shocked by it.

I bought this iem with my own money. My opinions are my own.
You can buy this on Amazon or Linsoul. These are listed here for convenience only.

Product Features

Song Choice: Tidal list here:
I listen to a wide variety of music. I pick the songs because of various reasons. But I picture myself locked away like Andy Dufresne from Shawshank blasting music and shut off from the world. It’s a blissful image.
The Marriage of Figaro -The opera song from Shawshank Redemption, terrible recording but fun and gets me in the mood to listen to music.
O mio Babino caro -This is a modern less operatic version but a song with great female vocals.
Video Rigoletto - “La donna e mobile” Sung by one of the three Tenors, great song for high-performing male vocals. Pavarotti is the greatest classic singer maybe ever. Fight me!
Iron man - The sound at the beginning is hard to make sound great, great drums, and cymbals, and if done right it feels like an old-school band.
I Will Survive (1981 recording, I like her voice, and the old vocals, the drums, and various natural instruments really make this a favorite for me.
There is a light That never goes out - Smiths ( A classic, I just love it. It’s mellow, and I can tell a lot of the tuning if this song is done right.)
Jump (I like how the sound effects are in this!)
Star Child Someone recommended this song to me, and I like how funky it sounds and has nice vocals and a mix of music and things going on.
Dicke Titten Ramstein The beginning is amazing and the bass hits hard. Great song. I love rock and metal. The German language fascinates me
Master of Puppets: Very fast song. Helps me determine if the driver can keep up.

Shell - The shell is easy on my ears, and I fully enjoy it. No problems from me.

Case- This is one of the faults of this headphone, it doesn’t come with a case. A cheap leather pouch would have been nice, but they need to cut costs somewhere. You could use the box it came in if you really need to, but it’s not ideal.

Cable- The cable is fine, it won’t twist or come into a knot. It doesn’t need to be replaced. It feels a tiny bit cheap, and it is disappointing compared to the Hola Cable, but what isn’t?


Tip Selection - Good colorful tip selection. Typical of 7hz. I like their color choices and have no problem with them here. It adds value to the set and is fine.

Comparison: In a competitive market there are many choices. It’s very hard to say. I personally feel that the Truthear Hola is packaged bettered, but the Salnotes Zero sounds a tiny bit better. Either way they are both good values, and fantastic iems for your collection.

Quick-Fire Comparisons

In this section, I'll quickly compare Zero to other relevant IEMs in its price bracket.

Salnotes Zero VS. Truthear Hola
Overall Tuning: Salnotes Zero
Details: Tied

Salnotes Zero VS. Kiwi Ears Cadenza
Overall Tuning: Kiwi Ears Cadena
Details: Salnotes Zero

Salnotes Zero VS. Moondrop Chu
Overall Tuning: Salnotes Zero
Details: Salnotes Zero

Value: It’s a good value product, and I’d highly recommend it. Nice surprising sound, and it’s fun looking.



The Salnotes base is strong and full sounded. Despite being a simple DD one driver. My music sounds good on it and it is reliably good across anything that I play with it. I hear a nice rumble in all the right songs, and in Dicky Titten I hear the slam at the appropriate levels. The speed in the base is great, I love it.


The Midrange of the Zero is smooth and clear. Voices sound great on it, and it feels great. The body of my songs sound good, and hits when I need it to hit.


The treble on The Smiths There is a Light That never Goes out sounds so right. The iem is flat and perfect where I want it to me. Nothing sounds bad that I throw at this IEM. It’s shocking and pleasurable.

Gifting/who is it for: I think this iem is for anyone. It’s my defacto budget pic. I’ve gifted away two of these to friends, and everyone has enjoyed them. The colors are nice options as well. It has multiple colors to pick from, and it’s just cool. Keep it in your pocket.

Pairing: I used a Quidelix 5k and a Topping DX1 dac through a SMSL SH-8s AMP. I don’t find the pairing to matter too much, but it certainly can.

This headphone is great. It’s not lame, and it’s fun and enjoyable. Pick up a pair if you want a cheap set that you can lose or keep at work in case of a headphone emergency! It’s a Wolverine to me, colorful, dynamic, charismatic, and takes a beating like no other. I 100% recommend this iem to anyone who is in the market for a budget iem, and is my defacto pick under 50 dollars. This iem is fire, it’s orange, it’s just a terror to compare to others as to my ears it’s just that good. Nothing is bad, the bar has been set.

Thanks for reading. Any feedback is welcome. I’ll be posting my preference list of iems, dacs, and headphones soon. It’s in process.


100+ Head-Fier
Baby S8?
Pros: +PRICE
Cons: - Technicality
- Dynamics?
Before I start this review, let me first say sorry for my broken English
the 7Hz Salnotes Zero is a loaner unit from my friend, and all of this review is my own personal opinion.
lets start from the Unboxing experience, the Zero come with a pretty "basic" box with boring unboxing experience
*tho that means all the money is invested to the IEM itself rather than some fancy box

Build of the IEM is mostly plastic with metal faceplates, it has standard 2pin 0.78 connector, but to be honest the plastic doesn't feel cheap at all.
The cable is really good considering the price of this IEMs, its not the usual thin noodle like generic chi-fi cable.
I don't use the stock eartips I replace it with $1USD Sony Hybrid Eartips from local Indonesia marketplace for better comfort

now for the Fitting, since I have big ears, the fitting is mostly YMMV things, some people have issues with the weird shapes of the shell, but myself didn't face any issues with the fitting at all
here some pics of

now lets talk about the SOUND.
the Zero is tested using

Source : Redmi Note 9 Pro, Moondrop Click, FiiO K7, Sony Hybrid eartips and Stock Cable
Apple Music Lossless,
: J-Pop, J-Rock, Anisong, EDM, Metal, Jazz, Rap


Tonality in General :
Harmann Neutral with slightly less bass shelf A.k.a. Copy of Moondr*p S8 VDSF Frequency Response Graph.

Bass : The bass is focused on the Sub Bass area, its quantity is noticeably boosted but not too much (definitely not for basshead). The bass presentation is rather on the boomier and rumbly side, not really punchy, but the speed is speedy enough for metal songs.
mid-bass, upper-bass transition to the lower midrange is really well executed (duh! it copies VDSF graph).

Mids : Mids positioning is parallel with the bass, not overly forward, have great note weight, not too thin nor too thick, vocal doesn't have any sibilance, not shouty, both male and female vocal is rendered pretty nicely.
If you are in search for a great budget vocal IEMs but you also like good bass, IMO the Zero is pretty good for it.
besides that, instruments sound such as trumpet, guitar, violin, etc sounds pretty clean and i can't find anything wrong with it.

Treble : Smooth, no peak at all, it has laidback presentation

Timbre : It sounds natural and normal, nothing to fault for the timbre.

Decay & Attack Transient : it has rather quick decay and the attack is on the softer side, for me i found it affects the dynamics of overall how the Zero sounds, and the Zero sounds pretty laidback because of it.


Detail Retrieval :
Nothing special, Average for its price
Stage : I found the Zero's stage on the smaller side, it has symmetrical size between width and depths, also I found the stage doesn't have exact wall placement
Imaging : The sounds coming from Zero doesn't sound just like its 2D passing to your ears, tho its not holographic for sure, its decent for its price.
Positioning & Separation : Also decent, not congested, but not exactly have razor sharp pinpoint accuracy (Tested on Plini - Pan, and Valorant)

Pairing :
Just plug it to your phone and enjoy. (tho if you have decent gears, the scalability on the technical side of the Zero is noticeable)

Comparison :

Moondrop CHU : CHU has less bass quantity, but it has more punch, mids on CHU is more forward and thin, treble on CHU is more sparkly and extension of the treble is more extended on CHU, technicality CHU is better than Zero on all categories (IMO).

Tangzu Wan'er SG : Wan'er is more focused on the midbass rather than sub bass like Zero, I Also found the Bass on Wan'er is somewhat more punchy overal tonality is more fun with the Wan'er (Midbass punch with more Sparkle rather than smoothed out treble presentation like Zero), technicality side, the Zero and Wan'er is pretty close

Conclusion / TLDR;
The 7Hz Salnotes Zero is recommended for individual who's:
  • On a tight budget
  • In search for Allrounder IEMs
  • Like Bass but also vocal lovers on budget
  • Like smooth treble presentation
  • In search for a pretty laidback IEM presentation
The 7Hz Salnotes Zero is NOT recommended for individual who's:
  • Prioritize technicalities
  • In search for more intense IEM presentation
  • In search for more fun tonality (more bass / more treble / v-shape, etc)

thanks for reading this far, again, sorry for my broken English,

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1000+ Head-Fier
Pros: Price!
Bass Quality
Decent Mids
Decent Highs
Decent Cable
Excellent price/performance
Cons: A little harsh Treble on some songs
The HEXA is only $50 more
Mediocre ear tips - but they work
7Hz Zero Top.jpg

Original Logo Small.png


Up for review today are the 7Hz Salnotes Zero (Zero) IEM with a 10mm dynamic driver costing a massive $22.99 from Amazon. I picked these up as part of an under $30 shootout with the Moondrop Chu (Chu), KZ x HBB DQ6S (DQ6S), and the TRUTHEAR HOLA (Hola). So, I will be posting individual reviews of each one and then an overall winner between all 4 separately. I will also probably compare them to the TRUTHEAR HEXA (HEXA), Thieaudio Monarch Mk2 (Monarch), and Vision Ears VE8 (VE8) I have on my desk so that you can decide whether you should spend $20, $80, $1,000, or $2,000. Spoiler alert: the 7Hz Salnotes sounds good enough, I’m not sure that you need to spend more unless you have the budget and want that extra 10-20%.

Built Quality / Comfort

These are $23. Anyone expecting Campfire Audio's level of build quality will be disappointed. However, the hard plastic shells in white and the stainless steel metal faceplates both look and feel really nice. They should last for a while if taken care of – and if you just throw them in a gym bag and they get beat up…oh well. The IEMs are pretty lightweight and small in size (they should have no issues with most ears). The cable is microphonic, which is not surprising, but of overall decent quality for this price range – the ear hooks work great, no complaints there. Of course, there’s only a 3.5mm jack included, which shouldn’t be an issue for the usage case of these (from your phone dong most likely). Also, the ear tips are decent quality, though the DQ6S has nicer ear tips and the HEXA comes with MUCH nicer ear tips/cable, etc. That’s a lot of where you’ll see the price increase between all of these – the accessories.

I’m using the included Red Tips that came installed and they seem to work just fine. I have also tried these with a 4.4mm balanced cable and can report excellent results as well. For the actual IEM shootout, I will be using the Kinera Leyding modular cable with 4.4mm balanced to ensure no variations in the cables between the IEMs. For the individual reviews, I will be using the included cable/tips so that whoever buys these will know what to expect.

7Hz Zero Bottom.jpg

Sound / Source / Comparisons:

I’m going to start including Squiglink Freq comparisons (a really cool tool if you haven’t used it: https://squig.link/index.html). I called the HEXA the Mini-Monarch, but if that’s the case, then the Zero is the Mini-Hexa. Look at the chart below – they’re almost identical until they hit the upper mids and treble. All have that peak at 8k and the dip at 10 to avoid sharpness in the high notes. All 3 sound really good and really all you have to do is pick how fancy/how much you want to spend/how great you want the sound to be and you’ll end up with a good IEM (not the bassiest quantity, but good quality bass – Check out the DQ6S for BASS). I am powering these off my Shanling M3 Ultra (36/100 volume) since it easily powers them, even on 3.5mm, and has a great sound – no need for the Burson.

MMk2 HEXA Zero.png

I don’t like breaking down headphones by each frequency since every song has bass, mids, and highs. So, I will start with bass-heavy songs, and break down each song by how all the pieces are presented. You can find my Tidal test tracks playlist in my signature if you want to compare them to your headphones. The first song I will be using to test is a bass-heavy song – David Guetta’s “I’m Good (Blue).” I’m using this song because some of the other songs I tested these with sounded a bit hollow and flat in the bass, but “I’m Good” does a great job as a recording of presenting all of the frequencies. The intro drums come in with some good kick, a little quieter than I would like, and definitely less than the DQ6S. These don’t have a ton of bass, but it’s good quality, especially at this price, and the sub-bass comes in really strong with the synths at 0:38. The synths are clear and sound competent, but don’t have the quality that the Monarch has in the mids (unsurprisingly). The bass once again comes in pretty hard at 1:24 with a good sub-bass rumble. If anything, the mids are lacking presence and can get overwhelmed by the other pieces. There is no real instrument separation or soundstage to speak of, the music feels like it’s in your, not in a particularly claustrophobic way. The hi-hats at 3:13 sound clean and not jarring or sharp. The HEXA has cleaner mids, more sub-bass, and better/more forward vocals.

Moving on to a mids-heavy song, we have Thousand Foot Krutch’s “I See Red.” The guitars come in clean with the vocals – no issues there, just a clean presentation as expected. The drums have a decent kick and don’t seem bloated or overwhelming. The high-hats at 1:00 come in clearly, but they feel a little out of place – I’m not used to hearing them so far in the foreground – they should be more background noise, and less prominent than they are here. The vocals in the chorus sound really clean again, guitar distortion is a bit muddy, but the individual notes at 2:35 come in really cleanly with only a little unwanted reverberation. The HEXA comes across with a better soundstage, better vocals, more forward mids, cleaner guitar notes, more apparent bass guitar notes, and less drum volume – but better quality drums. The HEXA is the better IEM on this song also, but at 4x the price.

For the highs test, I’m using Panic! At The Disco’s “High Hopes” since it can really illustrate sibilant “S” sounds in the 4-10k range. The Zero doesn’t not excel at this test with almost every “S” heard with strong sibilance/sharpness. It has the highest frequency in that range across the board and it shows in songs like this. Once again, the HEXA is the better IEM at 4x the price with far less sibilance throughout the song, clearer/more forward vocals, a more spacious soundstage, a little tighter bass, etc. Just to give the Zero another shot, I put on Michele McLaughlin’s “Across the Burren.” The Zero get a bit sharp in some of the notes, but overall avoids the sibilance that some IEMs/headphones can have on this song – a huge win – though the HEXA and Monarch avoid this as well.

So, it’s not a fair fight between the HEXA and the Zero – kind of like you know the Monarch Mk2 was going to be better than the HEXA for 12x as much. Well, how does it compare to the DQ6S then? You’ll have to wait for the shootout for a full comparison, but the DQ6S was WAY more/better bass, though it can get a little bloated and overwhelming – the Zero has MUCH better highs and similar mids with more forward vocals. The DQ6S are also easier to drive but have a cheaper feeling cable (silver coated though). For more comparisons with the Chu and HOLA, you’ll have to wait for the full shootout.

7Hz Zero GTR.jpg


If you only have $23 to spend on earbuds, you could do a LOT worse than these. If you are a basshead, get the DQ6S – no doubt. If you like a more neutral presentation with slightly boosted bass and can live with the slightly sibilant highs, get the Zero. BUT, if you can stretch your budget to $80, get the HEXA – it’s better in every way than the Zero. The Zero really makes a case for cheap IEMS – if all you need are a ~$20 set of IEMs to use and abuse, or if that’s all you can afford (I was a poor college student once living off Spicy Beef Ramen – I get it), you really don’t need to spend much more than these to have a good experience with music. So, unless the HOLA beats these when they come in (I’ll update if they do), grab the Zero – a very impressive IEM for the price.

You can buy them from Amazon here: https://amzn.to/3l1IzCA

Headphone Scoring - Each category can be split into quarter points:
Build Quality
Ear Pads / Tips
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500+ Head-Fier
Point of Aim, Point of Impact
Pros: overall tuning and technicalities, detachable cable
Cons: bass shelf should probably be more pronounced, mid-treble dip kills sparkle, no carry pouch

The 7Hz Salnotes Zero is an in-ear monitor (IEM) which uses a 10mm dynamic driver. The Zero retails for $20 on Linsoul’s Amazon shop. Linsoul sent me a unit in exchange for my impressions.

I have used the 7Hz Salnotes Zero with the following sources:

Qudelix 5K
Hidizs S9
E1DA 9038D

I have tested these headphones with local FLAC and Spotify Premium. Visit my last.fm page to get an idea of what I listen to:


The 7Hz Salnotes Zero comes in a small white cardboard box. The packaging features pictures of the Zero on the front and back covers.

In addition to the IEMs and detachable 2-pin cable, the Zero includes six pairs of silicone eartips in several varieties. These appear to be the same varieties described in my Dioko review:

The red, blue, and orange pairs are squatter and more conical in shape and feature wider nozzles. The light blue and yellow eartips are more round with narrower nozzles. The pink pair is also round but with wider nozzles than the other round eartips.

The pair of eartips resembling AZLA SednaEarfit Crystal eartips included with the Dioko is not included with the Zero. The Zero includes a product information card and a user manual written in English and Chinese, as well as a small velcro tie. The Zero does not include a carry pouch or case.

The 7Hz Salnotes Zero has a two-part plastic chassis with a stainless steel faceplate. The faceplates have a jagged, angular outline. “SAL♪NOTES ZERO” is laser-etched at the base of each faceplate. There is a small circular rivet at the top of each faceplate. The faceplates have developed minor scratches over the course of my review.

There is a small circular recession on the inside of each chassis with an embossed “L” or “R” indicator. There is also a pinprick vent at the base of the nozzle. The nozzles have the same metal and paper nozzle covers as the Dioko, and have extruded lips to secure eartips.

The 2-pin connectors are very snug and quite difficult to remove. The 2-pin connectors fit flush with the surface of the IEM housing body. Each 2-pin entry site is marked with a small red dot to indicate polarity.

The included 2-pin cable has two strands that are joined in parallel below the Y-split. The cable uses a mix of metal and dark plastic hardware. The cable jack has a straight form factor. “SAL♪NOTES” is printed in white along the length of the jack housing. There is strain relief above the jack housing but none at the Y-split. The cable has pre-formed earguides without memory wire and a rubber chin-adjustment choker. The curved 2-pin housings have faintly raised “L” and “R” markings. The cable is mildly microphonic.

The 7Hz Salnotes Zero is intended to be worn cable-up. The earpieces have a shallow insertion depth. I found the Zero to be very comfortable. However, secureness of fit is below average and the housings required occasional readjustment with most eartips I tried the Zero with. Isolation is fairly poor. There is mild driver flex.

My measurements of the 7Hz Salnotes Zero can be found on my expanding squig.link database:

7Hz Zero — Squiglink by Bedrock Reviews

The 7Hz Salnotes Zero is tuned very similarly to the Moondrop Chu.

Like the Chu, the Zero has a Harman-ish sound that emphasizes sub-bass over mid-bass, features a robust pinna gain region, and slopes downward from the pinna gain region through the upper treble.

The biggest tonal difference between the Chu and the Zero is that the Zero’s pinna gain region peaks later than the Chu. The Chu’s pinna gain region is centered around 3 kHz, while the Zero’s peaks later at around 3.5 kHz. This is a subtle difference, but depending on your ear physiology, may impact which of the two IEMs vocals sound more natural with. The Zero has a twinge more measured sub-bass than the Chu, although the difference between my samples is so small that this may be a question of unit variation rather than intended tuning. Subjectively, I feel that percussion actually has a greater impact on the Chu than the Zero. The Chu also has a hair more upper treble extension than the Zero.

The Zero’s sub-bass shelf is mild in its amplitude, and sub-bass extension is average. Bass articulation and resolution are both very good. The Zero’s bass is well-textured for the price but is lacking in impact. The result is a clean but underwhelming bass tuning. After hearing the Chu and now the Zero, I have come to believe that if an IEM opts for a pure sub-bass shelf, the amplitude of that shelf needs to be greater than what either of these IEMs displays. The bass does not bleed into the lower mids.

The Zero’s midrange is on the cooler side. Male vocals have grit but are slightly lacking in warmth. The amount of body to male vocals is somewhere in between these two other qualities. Female vocals are slightly more forward than male vocals, though both are very intelligible. Female vocals do sound more natural on the Chu than the Zero. On the Zero, there is a hint of strain and sibilance. On the Chu, female vocals are just slightly more grounded. With that said, the Zero’s midrange clarity is astonishing for an IEM of this price. The level of presence is essentially perfect for heavy rock genres. Timbre is slightly dry but natural sounding overall.

The Zero has slightly less lower treble energy than the Chu, which I prefer. Like the Chu, the Zero has a noticeable drop-off in the mid-treble which deprives cymbal hits of sparkle. While the Chu has better upper treble extension than the Zero, the Zero has slightly crisper treble transient delivery. The Chu has a larger soundstage and slightly better detail retrieval. Imaging between the two is comparable. The Zero has the best instrument separation I have heard on an IEM at this price.

The 7Hz Salnotes Zero does not need a powerful source to reach a usable listening volume. I did not notice hiss with any of my devices.

Overall, the 7Hz Salnotes Zero and the Moondrop Chu are neck-and-neck in terms of sound quality. They each have certain strengths and weaknesses compared to the other, but both put other options at the price point to shame. The two IEMs also make different trade-offs in terms of build and accessories. With the Zero, you get a detachable cable, whereas, with the Chu, you get Spring tips. While buyers will need to weigh which characteristics they value more in choosing between the two, both are solid buys for $20.

The 7Hz Salnotes Zero can be purchased below:



100+ Head-Fier
7Hz Salnotes Zero: The $20 Champ!
Pros: + Good Build
+ Comfortable fit
+ Good staging & Imaging
+ Good cable
+ Good bass performance for a $20 IEM
+ Great pairing with most dongles and portable players
Cons: - Midrange could be better (nit-picking really)
- Separation could be better
7Hz Salnotes Zero: The $20 Champ!



Launched in 27th July'2022, 7hz launched their new budget range IEM SALNOTES ZERO right below the $20 mark. ZERO comes with a 10MM Dynamic driver and is quite an all-rounder. 7hz promises this to be a great performer and from our impressions we can validate this to be a great value for money.


Disclaimer: @Linsoul Audio had sent me a review unit for my impressions & views. The opinions below are based on my experiences with the unit and my own. I have tried to be as comprehensive & comparative as I could be - to give a complete picture to the audience.



Let's quickly dive into what the 7hz ZERO has to offer. In pursuit of better sound for the price, the ZERO features a newly developed 10mm dynamic driver with metal composite diaphragm. The metallic composite diaphragm makes it easier to resonate or vibrate along with sound waves.

The 7Hz SALNOTES ZERO is priced at $19.99


Design & Build:

The ZERO comes with a Plastic shell which is very light and has a comfortable fit on most ears. I have tried it through long audio sessions and it fared very well throughout.

It is described as the following on the website:

7Hz Salnotes Zero is housed in a environment-friendly plastic chassis with a stainless steel faceplate. High precision and precision measurements based on ergonomics were taken to help create an earphone that offers an excellent acoustic performance, as well as safety, comfort and durability.
The metallic composite diaphragm used in this product is made of high quality materials, making it easier to resonate or vibrate along with sound waves. It was constructed with ease of use in mind as each part has been designed with precision accuracy so that they will not hinder audio transmission.
The fine tuning technique and using of a dynamic driver ensures accurate and efficient transmission of audio signals. You can enjoy a smooth and accurate sounds without any distortion. The earphones include a detachable cable with gold plated 0.78mm 2Pin connectors. The cable is made of 4 core high purity Oxygen Free Copper in parallel structure while each core is made of 19*0.08 wires+250D to maximally avoid signal loss and ensure a high fidelity transmission ..




The 7Hz SALNOTES ZERO comes at $19.99 price tag and is exclusively available through @Linsoul Audio.
The specifications are as below:



The Box & Accessories:



The Accessories:

The 7hz SALNOTES ZERO package now includes…
  • Salnotes ZERO Earphones
  • Replacement Eartips
  • Earphone Cable


Items Used for this Review:

DAC/AMP & Dongles:
@Questyle M15 Dongle DAC/AMP, @iFi audio Go Bar
Portable Players / Sources : Cayin N8ii, @Questyle QP2R, Lotoo Paw Gold Touch, A&K SP1000M
Streaming Source: QOBUZ

Ear Tips:


I've tried tip-rolling with a variety of tips such as: @Final Audio E series red & black ones, JVC Spiral dots, Spiral Dots+, @SpinFit Eartip CP500, CP155. Out of all of these I have found the AZLA SEDNA CRYSTAL to be the best fit for my ears in terms of overall fit, isolation & comfort.

Tracks Used:
The tracks I have used can be found from the below playlist that I have used and generally use for most reviews...


7hz SALNOTES ZERO Sound Impressions in Short:


The ZERO comes with good proper bass performance for the price range. The sub-bass has details and the mid-bass comes with enough rumble and slam. In tracks like: "Fools Paradise (LP Version) – Donna Lewis" and "Chocolate Chip Trip - Tool" you can feel the bass attack and also hear all the tiny nuances' of the sub-bass.


The midrange comes with ample clarity and openness in the ZERO. There is good amount of muscle and texture and the instruments sound very lively and enjoyable. Vocals are very immersive and both male and female vocals come with ample amount of details and feel very real. Transients are good for a planar. In tracks like: "Anchor - Trace Bundy", "A dog named Freedom – Kinky Friedman" and "Ruby Tuesday – Franco Battiato" it’s really easy to get lost into the music as it comes with ample detailed transients, texture, excellent vocals and details.


The treble feels quite engaging without being fatiguing or offensive. The treble performance was quite enjoyable and Cymbals sound very life-like and real in tracks like “Chocolate Chip Trip – Tool”.

Treble in tracks like: "Paradise Circus – Massive Attack", "Mambo for Roy – Roy Hargrove” and "Saints and Angels – Sharon Shannon" feel smooth & creamy with the right amount of air and texture and just feels very buttery smooth.


The Staging capabilities of the ZERO is the quite good and above average for price range and better than many $20-50 range also. It comes with the right amount of width, height, depth and is well defined and just as much as the track requires. Tracks like: “The Secret Drawer – Bela Fleck and the Flecktones” or “She Don’t know – Melody Gardot” or “Bohemian Rhapsody (live aid) – Queen” sound amazing & enjoyable. This is amongst the strongest trait of this IEM.

Separation & Imaging:

Imaging is quite spot on and location of each instrument can be felt quite clearly on the ZERO. Tracks like: “Rotterdam (Or Anywhere) - The Beautiful South “or “Hello Again - Howard Carpendale & The Royal Philharmonic Orchestra” just shine through. However, the separation is something you feel could be better.



No review is complete without comparisons. So here we are - with the 7hz SALNOTES ZERO vs FiiO JD3 as they both come in same price point of $19.99. Both the IEMs feature single dynamic driver.


ZERO vs JD3:

People keep asking for comparisons so here we are...


Build, Comfort & Features: Both IEMs are well built and comfortable. The JD3 comes with a mic but the ZERO doesn't.

Bass: While the JD3 has more prominent Slam in the mid-bass, it clearly lacks the details of the sub-bass region that is found in the ZER). The ZERO just has more details & clarity while the slam is not as prominent as JD3. Overall bass performance seems noticeably better on the ZERO.

Mids: The midrange on the JD3 is quite recessed and lacks details. Vocals lack texture and instruments lack clarity. The ZERO comes with much more open and clear midrange with ample texture and lush vocals.

Treble: The JD3 to have a few harsh peaks in some cases while the ZERO came with much more engaging and enjoyable experience.

Soundstage, Imaging and Separation: The ZERO is noticeably better in all 3 aspects.



The 7Hz ZERO is yet another great performer in the 7hz family and so far they have all been great in their respective price brackets raising the bar high in terms of performance.
Given the price range of below $20, the ZERO is an easy choice based on it's performance to price ratio.
It goes far above & beyond the price range and is an easy recommendation for people who seek good musical experience.

You always somehow manage to take the most beautiful images of our little baby M15 @asifur 😄
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100+ Head-Fier
Salnotes Zero - Zero to Hero?
Pros: High price performance ratio
Good tuning
Good treble extension and adequate energy that doesn't sound harsh
Bass has got good control and fast
Cons: Bass quantity can be a bit more
Soundstage and imaging is a little weak (more like nitpicking at this price point)
7Hz Salnotes Zero's Review

For those who are not aware, Salnotes is a sub brand of 7Hz which is well known for the Timeless Planar IEM. Salnotes’s first IEM is Dioko which is also a Planar in collaboration with Crinacle targeted at a more accessible price point. I have tried that model as well and i can understand why it’s such a hit, review to come soon. Let’s focus on Zero for now :)

Nothing much to say about the packaging, barebone style, you get a pack of eartips with wide,narrow bore with several sizes. A high quality cable in 3.5mm termination and the IEM itself. Nothing much to complain about considering the price.

The size of the iem is not big, so it should fit most ears properly. I can wear them for several hours straight without feeling discomfort. The nozzle is short, so you might have to spend some time to tip roll to get a proper fit, the stock tip works well for me, the red colored one or the light blue tip (if you want a little bit more oomph on the lower end)

Macbook Air M2 Tidal/Apple Music -> iFi nano iDSD Black Lable -> Zero
Tempotec V6 -> Zero
Macbook Air M2 Tidal/Apple Music -> Zero

Zero is clean sounding and has good dynamics and timbre for the asking price. While it will certainly not please the bassheads but other than that, i think it will do a good job of keeping their ears happy. With a good tuning that will certainly please most even seasoned audiophiles. They’re slightly warm to give a sense of musicality to the overall presentation.

  • Bass quality is good on the Zero and has adequate quantity for me
  • The sub bass does rumble when it’s called for but nowhere near basshead territory
  • Mid bass has good slam and punch to it and it is really commendable for its price point
  • Good texture and speed as it is evident on tracks like Slipknot’s People = crap, it’s keeping up and doesn’t sound muddy at all, it doesn’t even bleed into the mids

  • The mids has good note weight to me when listening to Imperial March by Wiener Philharmoniker, John Williams
  • Vocal positioning is slightly in your face rather than sounding recessed
  • Female vocal sounds a little more pleasant to me compared to male vocal, female vocal is a little bit more forward compared to male’s and it has got a little more bite to it
  • While the upper mid range is generally smooth and not harsh to my ears, but some who are sensitive might be bothered a little, as for me personally i prefer it to have a little more energy in this range where Zero has no problem delivering that

  • Treble has got enough energy and never harsh nor sibilant
  • Good amount of air and extension which is quite rare for the price point
  • Nothing much to comment here as the implementation is generally good
  • Something’s got to give right? Well, detail retrieval is average i would say, not really a con but rather nitpicking
Soundstage and imaging is pretty much in your head, it is alright for most of the track but if you are listening to an orchestral track, then it will definitely sound a little boxed in. Generally they are alright.

Zero is easy to drive but of course when you feed it with a better source, it does perform better. Majority of the dongle will be sufficient to provide a decent experience on the Zero.

Comparison (Moondrop Chu)
  • Similar price bracket to the Zero
  • Less bass quantity and a little bit lacking in terms of punch and impact, Zero does this better in terms of quality and quantity
  • In terms of sound, It’s safe to say Zero is running circle around Chu, it has got better bass control, a little bit more treble extension
  • The most important thing is that Zero features a detachable cable setup, for those who want to cable roll, this is a better option
  • It may seem like i am bashing Chu and shilling Zero, that’s not the case at all, Chu will be a safer option for someone who’s sensitive towards slightly energetic nature of Zero

Final Thoughts
Not gonna say much but if someone asks me if they should get Zero as their first starter IEM? I’m more than happy to tell them yes, even seasoned audiophiles will like this I'm sure. I for one like them, I take em out and just put them on with my DAP and listen to music without caring much for technicalities or seeking to hear every single detail in that particular track. It is just something that I wear and I listen to music and completely indulge myself into it. Easily a 5 star for Zero in terms of sound and high price performance ratio.

*Salnotes Zero is sent to me F.O.C from Linsoul in exchange for this review. I am in no way under any influence nor do I receive any monetary compensation for this review. All thoughts are of my own.

Head over to @Linsoul Audio store to purchase one if you are interested
Salnotes Zero - Non affiliated



Reviewer at nymzreviews
7hz Salnotes Zero: (T)chu (t)chu does the train
Pros: Price
2-pin cable
Cons: None at this price range other making you rethink your expensive collection.
1660172541933 2.jpg

Disclaimer: This unit was provided by Linsoul for free in exchange for a written review. No incentives of any kind were given and the review you are about to read are my own thoughts and opinions. Thanks once again to Linsoul for the opportunity and support.

Driver Setup: 1DD
Price: $20
Purchase link and info: Linsoul

Included in the box:
  • Salnotes Zero
  • Standard 2pin cable with a 3.5mm termination;
  • 5 pairs of silicone tips, color coordinated;

Comfort, fit and isolation: Great.
Source used: Topping E30 + L30 stack
Tips used: BGVP A07, Final E
Test playlist with some of the songs used: Tidal

Context - why did we need the Zero?

Timeless - one of the words you can’t avoid reading anywhere when searching for IEM nowadays. Bought out of nowhere in 2021, 7hz took the market by the storm with a strong proposition on hand: filling the gaps. Given the fast paced moving markets and the introduction of better and better budget options by the day, brands and consumers want timeless things, but not the eternal ones (giant pun intended).

And 7hz just did it again with their Salnotes Zero (Zero). They aimed for the audiophile twitter trends: calling a set Zero and making it around 20 dollars. Step aside as the train passes, chu chu (ok I’ll stop!)

graph - 2022-08-08T171845.409.png

I’ve been an advocate that tuning is (or should be) free. Consumers should be paying for technicalities, driver count, customer service, accessories, you name it, but not tuning.

Tuning is what makes or breaks an IEM for me. It is the most relevant thing when I hit play and with different tunings come different listening moods. There are exceptions and since I am talking about 7hz, might as well bring back Timeless to the table, as it’s one of the IEMs the tuning wasn’t as balanced for me but I could easily let it pass due to its resolving power at the given price bracket. Timeless was a setting stone and a true bracket disruptor and extrapolating that, so is the Zero.

The Salnotes Zero is a modest single dynamic driver IEM clocking in at twenty dollars without much fault. The costs were shorten where they should be - simple packaging, lack of any accessories other than tips, - but the focus was kept on where it matters - good enough shell, fit and comfort, using 2 pin connectors, a good enough to be usable cable and the most important thing, the sound.

As fast as Timeless took the world by storm, so did the more recently arrived ultra budget option, the Moondrop Chu. By not reinventing the wheel twice and focusing on taking something good and making it better, 7hz presents us a (spoiler alert) better Chu. If we rewind a couple of months back, the three major complaints about the Moondrop Chu were the following:
  1. Pillowy/soft bass;
  2. A hair more energy in the lower treble regions than needed for some libraries;
  3. Non-detached table.

graph - 2022-08-08T195420.171.png

It doesn’t take a genius to look at the graph and find that the point number 2) was taken care of and as mentioned above, the number 3) as well. So we are left with the number 1) that we will segway us into the sound section.

The Sound

The Salnotes Zero’s bass has what I would never describe as pillowy, but as the opposite. Once I played “5th New Century” remix by Len Faki, any doubt was gone as the microdynamics are there: it has a sense of rumble and slam that are commendable for its price and trading blows with most outliers in the budget range. “Why So Serious?” sense of claustrophobia is right there and the bass guitar on “Magnetar” is no slouch and very well positioned for my tastes.

The Zero has some of that warmth that just gives bones to the music, a tone to a party, but without ever spilling the drinks into the mid-range. Hania Rani’s piano on “Glass” has all the info with the right amount of weight despite the keys played. The “Prelude WTC I no. 2” by the Charl du Plessis Trio or “Mario Takes a Walk” by Jesse Cook just show how balanced these mids are with not much to fault on, tuning wise. Vocals are better portrayed when in their female form (Agnes Obel - The Curse) when compared to the male counterpart (The Dead South - In Hell I’ll Be In Good Company), showing better frontality and bite.

The upper mid-range is the only place I will nitpick by saying that I’d prefer a db or two less around the 4 to 5k area, as that is my sensible spot, but nothing I can’t adjust with some brain-in (Adele - Daydreamer). Again, I say this is a nitpick because I know most people reading this would be happy with it or even more energy here.

Past that, I have nothing to point on, as the treble is very well done and nicely extended, which was a rarity given the price range in the past (David Carroll - Hell’s Bells). Despite the graph, the energy up there is just right and never overcooked.

Now, as expected, the castle is made of cards and it would eventually fall down. Well, Zero’s weak spot is without a doubt the technicalities. The stereoimaging is not perfect, but I’ve heard much worse on things costing 20 or 40 times more, due to having just enough depth for the sound not to feel trapped inside your head. Another expected vital spot is the details and that goes along with the budget range - it is what you pay for. I would say the rest of the technical parts fall along the average for a sub 50 or 100 IEM, namely dynamics and timbre, which are neither bad nor good. (Polyphia - Playing God)

Quick Comparisons

graph - 2022-08-10T234826.350.png

Moondrop Chu

I was one of the praisers for Chu and, as mentioned in the introduction, Zero fulfills the gaps left behind - in fact, it was probably just a matter of time before someone threw a shot at it. I find Zero to be an overall upgrade to the Chu and for that, a new king rules in the 20$ bracket.

DUNU Titan S

Let’s face it, Titan S trumps all over Zero in the technical department, as it should, since it costs 4 times more. But again, when we look into what Zero really shines, such as its tuning, I’d prefer it over the Dunu’s offer. Nonetheless, the Titan S is still a better overall IEM.

Same story as the Titan S, as I’d take Zero’s tuning, especially mids and treble, but CRA’s technicalities. Good budget compliments if you want something more laidback vs something more energetic mildly V-shape like the CRA.

The verdict

If I praised CRA, Mele or Chu when they came out and given their price, it would only make sense to praise Zero as much as I can given it has almost literally my preference curve and it is now probably my favorite all-rounder IEM until the 100 dollar king pins touch base.

Is the Zero a perfect IEM? No, it is not, especially in the technical department. But in this reviewer’s opinion, as perfect as 20$ can get you right this moment. Highly and blindly recommended, with a cookie on the side.

With influencers like Crinacle and HBB basically confirming one of their next targets is also the 20$ bracket, I think we can expect even more competition here in the future. As for now, good luck beating the 7hz Salnotes Zero.

Value ranking: 5/5. Personal rank: C+.

Thanks for reading!
Maybe this is what happens to Moondrop Aria?

Anyhow, is there any better way to dampen upper frequencies without smearing the transients? I use micropore nowadays to dampen the nozzle and close vents, but I’m looking for more permanent solutions.
from years of modding, i learnt that foam is the best damper to use to absorb unwanted "ringing" resonance, as long as they don't block entire nozzle. You must have good airflow for DD to get non smeared bass (tight and right). Micropore is good, but poke a little hole in the center just to create good airflow for the bass.in case you missed it, i tried micropore too with Blon BL-03 few years back with measurements : https://www.head-fi.org/threads/blo...ressions-thread.916702/page-257#post-15814248
Best damper that i can think is make a medium density foam, with holes on the center, so it will be shaped like donut. from that, just make the foam longer or shorter depends on needs. Whoever do this, they win the competition if tuned nicely also.
Can I just cut a hole into the stock tuning foam and that white part on top of it to achieve simillar result?


100+ Head-Fier
Does so many things right!
Pros: Tuning, price, overall performance in it's category...
Cons: Peak in the high frequencies is a bit of a let down...

The 7Hz Salnotes Zero have been sent to mby Linsoul in exchange for the publication of this review. They have not requested anything specific and I will, as always, aim to be as unbiased as possible. However, you should always consider the fact that these IEMs have not cost me anything.

You can find a non-affiliate link to the Zero by visiting the version of this review published on my blog.



When I received the Zero, they were not yet on sale and I had no idea what the price was. Since then, they have become available on Linosul at a price of less than 20€, placing them firmly inside the sub 50€ bracket that I consider ultra-budget orientated.

7Hz are a brand that have made quite a name for themselves recently, with the 7Hz Timeless, a breakthrough in the planar IEM market, and the recent Dioko (in collaboration with Crinacle), amongst a couple of other models. The Zero I believe is their attempt at entering this ultra-budget IEM market with a single dynamic driver set of IEMs.



As is to be expected for less than 20€, the presentation is rather basic. Arriving in a plain box that a plastic covered tray slides out of, these are very reminiscent of some of the KZ presentations.

Inside the box we get the IEMs, the cable, the user manual and the same collection of multicoloured tips that were included with the Dioko that I reviewed recently.

I really can’t see any reason to complain here, as I would much rather IEMs in this price range have as much budget put towards the actual IEMs as possible.


Build and aesthetics…

The Zero are available in various colour options, these being black, blue and white. The version I have received are the blue ones, a colour that I would actually refer to as “smurf blue”.

I have to say that I have not had a set of IEMs come across my desk in this colour, so bonus points for originality, even if I do find them to look a bit like a toy (especially with the red tips that they arrive with).

The build is a combination of a plastic shell along with a metal faceplate. The shape is also original, with the use of plenty of straight lines, forming a shape that I really wouldn’t know what to call. This may mean that for some people with smaller ears, the square corners may result in some discomfort but I haven’t personally noticed any.

To be honest, I am not quite sure what to say about build quality. As I said, they do look a bit like toys and there is a clear seam where the shells are fixed together but at the same time, I really can spot anything that shouts “this is going to break”.

The included cable is nice enough, although a little stiff. It does refrain from tangling though and in general does its job, so I don’t have any complaints either. Yes, the cable included with the Dioko was much nicer (at 5 times the price) but this is still far better than many other cables included with ultra budget sets.

At the end of the day, aesthetics are very personal and while I am not a huge fan, I am also not going to put too much into how a set of 20€ IEMs look.



(Note: As always, tracks mentioned are clickable links that will open the referenced track in the streaming service of your choice)

This is the category that is “make or break” for an ultra-budget set of IEMs in my opinion. I mean, sound is obviously the most important part of any IEM (maybe along with comfort) but in this price range, if something manages to sound good, it is 99% of teh way there (in my opinion of course).

So, here is the usual graph comparing them to my personal preference target:

I have said it before but I will say it again, my target is just a guide, I don’t always like things that are very close to it and I don’t always dislike things that aren't. Saying that, on paper, we are off to a good start with the Zero tuning.

Starting off with the subbass frequencies, there is enough for my tastes, giving a nice sensation of rumble when the track calls for it, such as in the case of my usual test track, “Chameleon”. They also stay fairly clean and articulated in these lower ranges, without giving a sensation of muddying up the low end.

I am not sure if these IEMs were developed after the Crinacle collaboration but I must say that the bass in general is very reminiscent (in quantity) of the Dioko, something that I find very positive.

Midbass is more of the same story, not overly done and staying out of the way of the lower mids. This makes for a very clean bass region in general, allowing me to appreciate what is going on in the low ranges, even in complex songs. Ok, the speed may not be up to that of certain planar models, or other dynamic drivers in higher categories, but is is still pretty good, better than a lot of models I have heard coming in at many times the price of the Zero.

As with the low end of the Dioko, this tuning may sometimes give the impression that the lower notes of guitars are missing a little bit of body, maybe the guitar of Johnny Cash in “Hurt” being a good example, yet I would much rather take this presentation over something that is too bloated.

The mids are very well balanced and follow my preferences almost exactly. This, in my opinion, gives just the right amount of presence and balance to vocals and instruments located in these frequencies. There is no huge dip in the mids, nor is there a huge spike at the top of the mids that is needed to compensate for any lack of lower midrange. The presence between 2kHz and 4kHz is almost perfect (again, in my opinion), starting to roll off before we hit 5kHz, a range that I am very sensitive to.

This is actually something that I equalized the Dioko to while I was testing it and it resulted in things becoming rather harsh in this area, that does not seem to be the case with the Zero. In the track “Don’t You Worry Child” by Beth, her voice can become very harsh and almost unlistenable on many set that have too much in the higher mids, in the case of the Zero, she is still harsh (the recording is harsh itself) yet listenable.

Moving into the upper ranges is where I find the issue with the Zero. There is plenty of extension and feeling of air, yet there is also a spike that does make these upper ranges a little brutal on occasions. This peak does not actually create too much sibilance as “Code Cool” is a little hot but not painful (which can certainly be the case), yet there is a bit of a metallic shine to the upper range, making it not feel natural.

My guess is that 7Hz have used this extra presence in the upper ranges to make the Zero seem like it has more details than it actually does. This is something that many brands have done with various models to give that impression of detail. This is something that can make a set of IEMs sound very impressive during the initial listening phase, yet can be fatiguing on longer listening sessions.

My take on this is that the Zero don’t really have a huge amount of detail. I mean, they are not bad, certainly more than acceptable for the price range that they sit in, but they are not as detailed as that upper range peak would like you to think. To be honest, this does give the sensation that they extend much better in the treble than other dynamic driver sets, yet they really don’t, it is more of an illusion created by that peak.

Soundstage is not bad but is another thing that is conditioned a little by that upper peak. That sensation of more air does sometimes add to the sensation of more space, yet when isolating certain instruments and sounds (such as in “Bubbles”), the soundstage is actually around average for a set of IEMs.



Everything was going so well with the Zero until that upper peak. Now, that does not mean that they are a bad set of IEMs, far from it, they are a great set of IEMs for their price (and could could probably compete with sets priced quite a bit higher), I think it is more of me finding so many good things about the tuning that the one error, or maybe that is not the correct word, let’s say that one “choice”, is something that was probably more of a let down due to everything else being so surprisingly good.

Obviously this can be corrected (again, maybe corrected is not the right term) with a little eq, but I actually feel that maybe it is simpler than that and it can be corrected with a filter that just tames those highest ranges a little. When I get a chance (I have quite a list of backlogged items) I will certainly try a couple of things because I feel that these IEMs are almost perfect as far as tuning in their price bracket.

Again, please do not take this as a negative review, the 7Hz Salnotes Zero do almost everything much better than can be expected for their price.


As always, you can find this review in Spanish both on www.achoreviews.com and on www.youtube.com/achoreviews
My IEM FR measurements are available on achoreviews.squig.link and my IEM isolation measurements can be found on achoreviews.squig.link/isolation
Buena review y el video muy interesante. No notas que requiere más potencia para moverlos de lo normal en un driver dinámico tipo Kato ? Gracias.
I am not sure if these IEMs were developed after the Crinacle collaboration but I must say that the bass in general is very reminiscent (in quantity) of the Dioko, something that I find very positive.
They were tuned by Crinacle, but he didn't want his name on it as he tuned another Zero model from another brand - Truthear x Crinacle Zero.
@Eiffel 👍 (I wasn't aware of that at the time 🙂)


Headphoneus Supremus
Dynamic Driver Paradise!
Pros: Cohesive playback
Exquisite note weight
Single 10mm Metal Composite DD
N52 magnet
Special 7Hz custom tuning
OFC high purity detachable cable
Comes in white, blue or black shells
A wild assortment of earphone tip colors
2 pin cable mounts located at an angle creating advanced fitment
A name you can trust with a proven track-record
Warm and balanced
Plays all genres and file qualities
Even, correct and complete frequency response
A nice complementary set to 7Hz x Crinacle: Salnotes Dioko
Cons: Hmmm……I can’t think of any?


The 7Hz Zero Dynamic:
Once upon a time back in 2018 a team of engineers and audio enthusiasts got together to test their skills. Eventually they called themselves 7Hz. In 2021 their Timeless 14.2mm planar magnetic IEM launched them into the limelight. Reason being.........no other IEM under $300.00 has better technical resolvability. The unique CNC shell, the double-sided N52 magnet array made the Timeless almost a household name. The Timeless was (and still is) famous around these parts anyway. Priced at $219.99 they have sold boatloads. What if, what if they could introduce a dynamic driver that would challenge the entire market? What if that dynamic driver was only $19.99? Would that be a good thing? What if they gave you a choice of three colors and a groovy high purity OFC cable? What if it was tuned like no tomorrow? Would all that be a good thing? After a few good releases and one great (Timeless) release 7Hz goes and takes this game to another level. Providing a budget set with a premium sound was the main goal. To add innovations like tilted cable mounts and a crazy zig-zag shape made them stand out from the crowd. But as we will find out, the sound quality vs price is what will make this the best seller in 7Hz history.

The 7Hz Zero Dynamic:

Such an IEM offers both warmth and detail, a nice soundstage expansion and great fit. It plays all genres well, is easy to drive and even makes poor recordings sound good. Though in my testing the Zero wasn't always the most forgiving of sources. Meaning I found some combinations better than others. Though surprisingly the $109.00 Shanling UA3 was one of the very best combos found. So there's that? The tune is very sophisticated and mature, it's fast, full-range and involving. When you also factor in the price of admission for such summersaults, things start to become increasingly surreal. Under $20.00.......really? While the newly released sister product, the 7Hz x Crinacle: Planar Salnotes Dioko and the Zero often share common ground. Both have cables that almost look the same, with the Dioko being just slightly bigger. Both designs offer a smooth easy going stance with sub-bass being the most prominent style of bass response. Both offer well developed midrange abilities, and while my experience with the Dioko is very limited, they truly do share many common attributes, with listenability being probably the strongest? But the extra cash for the Dioko absolutely gets you better detail. Still so far in my testing the Dioko bass is not as noticeable. What you get instead is a kind of upper bass playfulness that is in combo with the sub bass extras, the Zero just can't reach. Does this mean you have to choose? I can say the Zero experience isn't terribly far from what you get with the Dioko even though one is a double sided planar driver and one is a dynamic. If anything, while they are similar, they are also complementary, offering slightly different windows into your library.


The 7Hz x Crinacle: Salnotes Dioko

The Box opening experience:

Above shows the clear plastic cover.



Included is 6 pairs of ear-tips, some wide bore, and some narrow bore. The Zero IEMs, the great OFC cable and user manuals.


Take note of the 2 pin plug receptacles offering a slight angle, which in turn angles the ear-hooks towards your ear. The body is 2 piece clam-shell resin design with a full-sided metal plate. Nozzles have a fabulous tip holder form as well as inset screens.



The gorgeous OFC cable that looks like the one that came with the 7Hz x Crinacle: Salnotes Dioko, but upon closer inspection it's smaller and thinner, yet still a great add.


Zero sound generalizations:
The first thing that hits you is just how cohesive and coherent everything is. Such a quality can go miles to add to the listening experience. Simply by being...........by having the sound be natural and true is a value, whatever the price. And within that trueness we are bestowed a critical placement of imaging, but also tone and decays. The decays becoming the realization of natural and how true to life the fall-off of notes become. But beyond that, I have a simple sound artifact that I use. When experiencing the first generalizations, I then will often move to this small static sound. At 8 seconds into The Cure’s “All Cats are Grey” there is this subtle noise. The sound is like a microphone cord movement or static electricity, maybe a dirty knob turn? Whatever the sound is from they didn’t have the ability to remove this artifact from the tape. Such small noise is actually (for me) a test of how well a headphone resolves. At times the sound will be buried in the mix, and when the IEM tuning is just right........the sound becomes a baseline standard in my IEM testing. Meaning there is a correct way for this sound to sound, and the best IEMs perform that quality and placement in the forward to back soundstage. After that there is a specific way the Zero does imaging that is both correct and splendid. Also the vocals in this song wait till the number is half-over before showing up. But when they arrive (at 2 minutes 18 seconds) they are in perfect relief among the backdrop of instrumentation.

Let’s rewind:
The drums are the first thing to be heard when this song starts, such heavy reverberated and panned “hits” are displayed with both the correct tone and placement, all-the-while traveling across the soundstage. It’s the playful right to left interactions which become a mesmerizing feature at the very beginning, and act like a skeleton to which all else is slowly added. All these super tiny individual drum reverbs and studio wall bounces are heard in the most exquisite fashion. There are also very subtle nuances of volume created by drum hit pressure that shows this is a looping of sorts, not a drum machine. It’s probably a long sample on a keyboard, but it's so intricate and detailed. Normally I key into the bass first off with this song. And while the bass is present and not missing in anyway, it’s slightly behind in emphasis this time. Still totally correct, and maybe more of a tighter and clearer bass, without that super low-end baggage bass can have. People are going bonkers over how this IEM tune takes place as almost perfect, and I agree it’s one of the best tunes for $20.00 ever! So polite and sophisticated..........pure and correct. You’re probably making judgments due to the price, not to believe my accolades, and I forgive you, as often price determines ability, but not always. And here is that not always!

Let’s just say, probably anyone would be smitten with the price to value quota expressed here. My single greatest complement here has to do with DD personality. That often there will be a FR which seems to not be even or complete. Really a combination of FR and driver technical ability which creates a stuffiness. DD singular composite error, would be my best made-up term for it. Where with DDs at times sounds don’t make it out into the airspace. They sit too close to home........but we are not experiencing that here. There is a polite placement, like eggs in an egg-carton, where everything is magically in place. Not only in place, but natural sounding too.

When I found out:
When I learned of the Zero’s existence, I showed my jaded attitude. Oh great, another single DD, and $20.00 too. Another review, another day, another IEM to cross paths with. First off I have a slight preference for Hybrids. I just really like the separation and contrasts they provide. I (at this point) view single DDs as having a limited soundstage and limited treble sparklers. If they do have an outshoot of character, often the midrange can be too forward. But no? Not here? Everything is right, everything is very, very, very well done. Even though I view the concept of the single DD as having to curtail most of the sparkles and most of the low-end rumble.............there is not truly that issue here? It’s an amazingly together tune, mixed with the right technicalities.

Treble and Bass:

The characteristic balance goes ahead to dial the Zero in. Meaning, just like just described above, there is a better and more natural separation of elements into the stage that makes the treble experience for me. It’s maybe a very subtle thing; that way the Zero moves its images out into the stage, just ever so slightly different, and better than most single DDs, regardless of price. Still most of this talk of perfection and forgiveness still centers on synergy. Yep, while I found the treble to be fine with the included cable, other highlights and sonic embellishments came with the use of a silver/copper Hybrid cable called the ISN S8. At $32.50 the S8 looms over the Zero in basic cost, but provides the goods accordingly. Yet a match-up with the Walkman WM1A proved to be slightly bright? My best overall synergy came believe-it-or-not with the Shanling UA3 Dongle. So wait, lol, let’s get our barring straight. $32.50 cable, Shanling Dongle $109.00 and the 7HZ Salnotes Zero for $19.99.....ha. All and all it’s all about synergy in the end, and not always about cost. The treble with the UA3 was incredible as it offered that perfect balance of detail and listenability. Such focus into the music is why we are here. Still the sub-bass balance is why we hear the amount of treble. Such ways are not by accident, but throughly calculated maneuvers in design and construction implementation. This 10mm metal composite diaphragm matched with the N52 magnet are offering a tight full-spectrum display. It’s like a 4K TV in sound for 1 cent under $20.00! Yes, they are wonderfully detailed, more than you would guess for the price point. Such treble seems well imaged into the soundstage. I can't believe there is only a single driver inside.


The Dark Knight Rises OST
“Mind If I Cut In?”
Hans Zimmer

192 kHz - 24 bit

This song parlays the detail, plus reverberations and contrast in both treble and bass authority. This song starts with a deep bass remnant of the previous song, then segues into the main theme of high piano notes and violin. We are enamored by the silence then taken to single piano notes. What is special is the decay of the notes, and the fact that they are rapidly panned right to left while still holding a theme. At 2 minutes 5 seconds the bass drops. This in-fact is some of the best construction of the Zeros bass elements, due to the sub-bass focus. That’s right, just like the other recent high profile release by 7Hz, we have glorious sub-bass as the central character of the bass region. Only this time we trade the 7Hz instantaneous planar bass response for a warmer DD in the Zero. Truly my 7Hz x Crinacle: Salnotes Dioko is burning-in but first impressions are that the Zero is warmer and offering a fuller more beefy style of tune. Added is the more analog feel, yet (due to balance) I can’t help but hear how these two are related. So far though (believe it or not) I like the Zero way better than the 7Hz x Crinacle: Salnotes Dioko? Why? Note weight, bass fullness and the ever-so-slight added authority of the Zero. Though the 7Hz x Crinacle: Salnotes Dioko could surprise with added burn-in. Of the other 2 planars I own, the HOOK-X and TINHIFI P1 Max..........both needed extraordinary long burn-in time before revealing the low-end. So I may eat my words here? I will say the Dioko at this point has more detail and a style of definition that totally wins-out on the Zero. The Dioko bass attacks are clearer and have better delineation. But do they dig as deep? No! It does have the overall sound of a $99.00 IEM, Still the Zero is strikingly close in abilities, way more than the $19.99 price would have you believe. It’s just that it’s not always about detail, it’s about musicality and low-end at times………it’s getting that last once of grand authority from the Zero that has it pull-away from the 7Hz x Crinacle: Salnotes Dioko in early comparisons. But still remember this is only a single persons viewpoint, the Dioko may grow to do way better vocals after burn-in. I have been wrong before by prejudging both the HOOK-X and P1 Max too soon. Somehow planars need a lot of burn-in, at least 75 hours.


The midrange:
What could be said? The main gift is what the Zero doesn’t do. It doesn’t have the permeating sound like it’s all midrange. This effect takes place due to the reality of a little rolled-off the top frequencies and a smidge removed from the lows. Yet here we don’t experience this phenomenon. Just a fantastic tune, backed-up by a driver that can actually pull-it-off. What we are left with is the three band experience of truly a natural treble, a detailed midrange and a provocative fully competent bass. This style of tune is maybe as close to perfect as it gets. Being that the mids go-ahead and offer it all. Gone is that need to crank-It to hear the midrange. Though the feeling of greater contrast does take place at louder listening volumes. The midrange is ever so slightly smoother than many IEMs. But after aquatinted, the details start to flow and become recognized for being the full gambit of information.

With the S8 cable, UA3 Amp/DAC and Zero IEM, the combination gave a firm level of freedom to listen to any file quality, and any genre. With a quick return to the stock cable (3.5mm unbalanced amplification) the UA3 showed only very small differences. The 4.4mm and S8 offered a tad greater contrast (through treble) and a slight (ever so slight) increase in soundstage. And while there is a difference, that difference is small. Another fascinating revelation came with adding the stock cable with the Zero to the more treble centric Walkman WM1A. While still showing a more forward treble than the UA3, all the troublesome brightness was (almost) reduced. It is truly staggering how I can prefer the UA3 sound to both more expensive DAPs, but that’s synergy and just how synergy works.

DSC_0077.jpeg FINAL.jpeg

The $20 market for audiophile IEMs is fierce. This is a sink or swim situation. To stay afloat IEM manufactures have to give more, more bang-for-the-buck. If they don't provide quality, they will be looked-over in this increasingly large ocean of new IEMs. They need good marketing exposure as well as a unique shape so consumers can identify them. Surprisingly this (zig-zag) shape only faces the exterior, as the semi-custom build and medium feather weight enable the Zero to feel fabulous. Coming in and disrupting the DD market was the goal of 7Hz, and they performed as scheduled. To think that this is the lowest priced single DD 7Hz made, hundreds less money than their previous single DD model. This is a gateway product, which will instill confidence in the 7Hz company and their abilities. Sure enough another single DD will soon follow, adding to the curiosity among 7Hz fans. This venture shows that 7Hz isn't just a planar company anymore...........they can pretty much do whatever they like. They have the tuning skills to make a winner, they have the building skills to provide first rate quality control, and they have the marketing infrastructure to move units. Won't you join in the hoopla and havoc this new release brings? There is truly nothing to lose.

7HZ Salnotes Zero
HiFi 10mm Dynamic Driver In Ear Earphone

  • 10mm Dynamic Driver With Metal Composite Diaphragm
  • Ergonomic Shape & Metal Housing
  • Detachable High Purity OFC Cable/0.78mm 2Pin
  • N52 Magnet
  • Fine Tuning
  • Impedance: >32ohm
  • Sound pressure level: 108dB/v@1kHz
  • Frequency response range: 10-20000Hz
  • THD: <1%/1khz
Get them here for only $19.99

Free shipping and one year warranty when you buy from Linsoul.

I would like to thank Kareena Tang from Linsoul for the opportunity to review 7Hz Salnotes Zero IEM.

Linsoul website:
Linsoul Aliexpress Store: https://ddaudio.aliexpress.com/store/2894006
Linsoul USA Amazon Store link: https://www.amazon.com/s?i=merchant-items&me=A267P2DT104U3C

Equipment Used:
Sony WM1Z Walkman DAP MrWalkman Firmware 4.4mm and 3.5mm
Sony WM1A Walkman DAP MrWalkman Firmware 4.4mm and 3.5mm
Sony TA-ZH1ES DAC/AMP Firmware 1.03
Electra Glide Audio Reference Glide-Reference Standard "Fatboy" Power Cord
Sony Walkman Cradle BCR-NWH10
AudioQuest Carbon USB
Shanling UA3 Dongle 4.4mm and 3.5mm

These are the experiences and thoughts of a single individual, your results may vary.
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+1 Nicely done! :beerchug:

This company put a lot of heart and effort on this new IEM!
When I received mine over a week ago, I quickly noticed the quality of the cable, accessories, and housing down to the wheel looking nozzle. For $20 dollars, these were built and tuned with precision in mind. How can you fault these?