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Brainwavz XFIT XF-200 In-Ear Sport Monitors

Rating:
3.68182/5,
  1. NA Blur
    An Affordable On The Go IEM
    Written by NA Blur
    Published Feb 1, 2016
    3.5/5,
    Pros - Great build quality, awesome seal, over the ear fit is comfortable
    Cons - Very bassy, poor mic sound quality
    Brainwavz_XF200_Box.jpg
    SPECS:
    http://www.brainwavzaudio.com/products/xfit-xf200-noise-isolating-sport-iem-earphones-w-3-button-remote-microphone
     
    Driver Type                     9mm Dynamic ( bass ported )
    Plug Type                       3.5mm
    Cord Length                   1.4m Y
    Frequency Response     20 Hz – 20 kHz
    Impedance                     16 Ohms
    Sensitivity                       95dB / mW @ 1kHz
     
    WHERE TO BUY / COST:
     
    http://www.brainwavzaudio.com/products/xfit-xf200-noise-isolating-sport-iem-earphones-w-3-button-remote-microphone
     
    $25.00 new
     
    OVERVIEW
    Brainwavz has quite a few IEMs on the market now and their products reach a wide audience because of the giant variety and cost. With the introduction of the XF200, their truly exercise friendly IEM, Brainwavz appeals to those on the move. This IEM aims for ”egonomics, a secure fit, and a crisp, clear, and bold sound.”
     
    AESTHETICS
    DSC_0021.jpg
     
    The design on the XF200 is the first wrap around style IEM that Brainwavz has made. As seen in this photo you can see the IEM body is square, the driver nozzles angled, and stiff memory shielding placed in the first few inches from the earpieces to allow form-fitting around the ear placement. The cable feels robust and there is strain relief at the jack plug as well as each ear piece. In-line is a mic and 3-button remote. A cable cinch is also provided to help secure the IEMs and remove any microphonics heard in the cable during movement.
    DSC_0018.jpg
    Plenty of tip sizes are available including a set of Comply foam tips. The shirt clip is also a nice touch considering these are designed for active listeners.
    It took me a minute or two to get the correct fit due to the square driver body, but once in place I found them comfortable. Listeners might want to play around with different tip sizes to achieve the best seal as this really helped the sound. If one channel seems louder than the other change out the tip on the weak channel.
     
    The driver nozzles are just the right length allowing for an adequate seal as well as lasting comfort. The jack plug is angled at 45 degrees allowing easy insertion into a portable device like an iPod or phone. The cable is 1.4m long making it easy to tunnel under clothing during exercise. Overall the aesthetics are excellent for a $25 IEM and I found no shortfalls or immediate problems.
     
    ACOUSTICS
    Familiar with the Brainwavz house sound I was eager to see if the up-front and slightly bassy signature remained intact with the XF200. The great news is that the house sound is present and due to the great seal the soundstage appears to be expanded compared to other IEMs offered by Brainwavz such as the M1 and Omega.
     
    Unamped: Having a sensitivity of 95dB/mW one would think that the XF200 would be difficult to drive, but in my case I found the sensitivity to be more in the 105dB / mW range both amped and unamped. There are no worries for those wanting to use this unamped. The impedance is low reaching 16 Ohms so those who have an older tube-amp may want to try a higher impedance IEM, but the XF200 ran fine out of my solid state desktop rig.
     
    Unamped the XF200 has a wonderfully clear midrange, bass emphasis, and gently rolled off treble avoiding fatigue. I also found the bass to not deliver too much pressure during long listening sessions which was a relief. This IEM has a touch too much roll-off in the treble to be considered for critical listening, but it really wasn’t designed for that anyway. A few tracks like Aes Dana’s Memory Shell ( Lost Radio Ed-dit ) provided too much bass for my liking and caused the bass to drown out the midrange. Not so much so that the midrange was completely gone, but the focus moved to the bass rather than the midrange which is where I consider Brainwavz IEMs do fantastically well. Overall unamped listening proved enjoyable especially when I was working out or out for a run.
    DSC_0024.jpg
    Amped: I test all of my headphones amped and unamped because the performance is often quite different. Portables typically have cleaner power, but limited voltage. Desktop amps have plenty of voltage, but can have current issues. The Brainwavz XF200 sounds good unamped, but amped it starts to sound congested and uneven. Moving to medium gain adds a little color the sound signature bringing the bass more forward and pushing the mids back.
     
    Listening to John Mayer’s Vultures track from the Continuum album reveals the overly bassy presentation of the XF200. Focals become hidden behind the wall of bass. This is one reason that overly bassy IEMs are so hard to recommend.
     
    Other tracks like Buddy and Julie Miller’s One Part, Two Part from the Written in Chalk album shows how large the soundstage can sound with this IEM, but at times I did feel that the treble was bright and too sharp.
     
    Upon further investigation I noticed an open bass port on the inside of the earpieces. This looks like an open hole which is difficult to see on the all black body. I quickly placed a piece of tape over the hole and gave another listen. The bass bloat was greatly attenuated and the treble extended. The midrange developed a light tinny sound, but due to the much needed bass control I highly suggest closing the bass port on this IEM. A tiny piece of Kapton take or a small drop of fingernail polish does the trick.
     
    With the bass ports open I recommend the XF200 for only portable listening as desktop rigs will tend to reveal the flaws of the sound signature making it hard to critically listen to.
    DSC_0023.jpg
    As with all headphones that come with a mic I test them via phone call. Many have clarity issues by either sounding distant, muddy, or both. The XF200 mic does sound muddy and it would be wonderful if the mic from Brainwavz’s Omega was transplanted onto the XF200 brining its clarity on par with better sounding IEMs. The mic is usable, but certainly not the best for conferences or long critical conversations.
     
    CONCLUSION
    Brainwavz brings the XF200 to the exercise market by making a very solid IEM. It is constructed and designed with abuse in mind. Due to the poor mic sound quality and uneven sound signature with the bass ports open, critical listening is just not enjoyable, but with the ports closed this $25 IEM is easily recommended. If you plan on using the mic a ton you may want to see if Brainwavz updates the mic before purchasing the XF200. Otherwise with the bass ports closed off I highly recommend trying the XF200 be it for exercise or general listening.
     
    Update
    There is an open bass port seen on the inside of each earpiece that can be plugged to attenuate the bass and extend the treble. I used some fingernail polish, but you could use something like Kapton tape. My only recommendation is you use something more on the super sticky side and not use basic tape because this could come loose inside your ear and cause infection. Plugging the bass ports moves this IEM to easily 4-stars.
    1. avitron142
      The accessories should be included in the pros, or at least be noted as something out of the ordinary. The amount of tips and quality of case in this $25 IEM can cost easily half the cost of the IEM itself. Many headphones 4x the price fail in that department.
      avitron142, Feb 1, 2016
    2. NA Blur
      I agree the accessories and case are awesome. I prefer a low profile case for travel like the case from the GranVela ATE, but Brainwavz makes a very durable case.
      NA Blur, Feb 2, 2016
  2. SoundApprentice
    A budget beast for the Basshead
    Written by SoundApprentice
    Published Feb 2, 2016
    3.0/5,
    Pros - Compact, lightweight, universal design
    Cons - Boomy bass, unrefined sound
    [​IMG]


    A few days after testing out the adventure-inspired Westone ADV Beta earphone, Brainwavz hit me up with the timely opportunity to give their latest earphone a test ride. Meet the newBrainwavz XFit XF-200 earphone that, as they say, is specially designed for users who engage in sports and athletic activities. What makes it special for the active audiophile? How about a compact, lightweight design; pre-molded, over-the-ear cable routing; a short cable that won't trip you up; and an assortment of accessories to keep you moving. Oh, and at $25 it probably costs less than your monthly gym dues.

    Unboxing
    The XF-200 comes in a minimalist no frills economy plastic box and inner tray that keeps packaging to a minimum. It's nothing fancy, but since you're more than likely to toss it out, who cares, right? Inside, you’ll find everything neatly packed and organized; which is probably completely opposite of how your sports bag is, but that's OK.

    Accessories
     ​

    [​IMG]For $25 MSRP, you generally don't get much, but Brainwavz never fails to take care of customers by including more than they bargained for. In this instance, the XF-200 includes their familiar branded zippered hard case, Velcro cable tie, and shirt clip, a set of Comply foam ear tips, a set of bi-flange silicone ear tips, and two sets each of standard S, M, and L silicone ear tips (because you know you're going to loose one at some point).

    Performance
    [​IMG]The XF-200 is an ergonomically designed dime-sized universal IEM that's intended to sit comfortably in the ear to ensure stability during your workout. The over-the-ear cable routing takes the secure fit a step further by eliminating the chances of getting caught  up in the cable and pulling it out of your ear. With the large assortment of tips, you have several options to test in your ear for the best fit.

    As with most earphones/IEMs, tip selection is critical, and I strongly encourage you to take the time to choose the ear tip that fits best—emphasis on best and not just one that “fits”—because the audio quality, comfort, and isolation improve greatly when the ideal tip is used. (For me, the bi-flange and Comply foam tips worked best and offered better sound quality, bass impact, and isolation.)

    Speaking of bass, the XF-200 hits pretty hard. Marketing speak generally over-promises and under-delivers, but I'd say Brainwavz was spot-on with their claim boasting "booming beats." Dig that live music hall sound? The XF-200 has it: Booming, emphasized bass; a touch of reverb; dark mids, and highs that can come off as recessed on some tracks. The XF-200 certainly does not have a refined, balanced "audiophile" sound (try the S0 or M1 for that at a similar price); depending on your preferences, it's either unruly or fun. I'd say it's best suited for pumping EDM and synth beats into your eardrums while you hustle up the StairMaster. And you know what? I'm fine with that, because the XF-200 does that damn well and sounds a helluva lot better than most earphones you'll find at this price. (Of note, the variety of ear tips included do impact the sonic signature, so again, try them all to see what fits and sounds best to you.)

    Last, let's talk about the 3-button control built into the cable for volume, skipping tracks, pause/play, and the mic for taking phone calls. The packaging states compatibility with Apple devices and most Android devices and other doodads; your results may vary. Apparently my Droid Turbo hates all earphones with built-in remotes because just like I experienced with the Westone ADV Beta, the volume/phone call controls do not work with my Droid Turbo, but I am able to mute the mic and pause songs using the center button, so it’s not completely useless. The mic seemed to work well, as my test calls were heard loud and clear, and calls come over the XF-200 sounding quite clear as well.

    Bottom Line
    Brainwavz has put out another quality product with a budget price. Yeah, the sound could be more refined, but to Hell with that. We want bass, and we want it now. At least that's what I want at the gym to help drown out my racing heart beat and huffing and puffing. For $25 you're getting a nicely designed earphone with a plethora of accessories, a 2-year warranty, and an overall energetic sound. If you want more, spend more. If you want affordable, these will put your silly OEM earbuds and Skull Candy's to shame. For a no-nonsense earbud that you don't have to worry about when you're working out, grab the XF-200 and get on with your next set.

    The XF-200 retails for US$25.00 and will be available on Brainwavzaudio.comAmazon.com, Amazon.co.uk and other authorized Brainwavz resellers around the globe.
     
    [​IMG]

    1. BloodyPenguin
      Good Honest Review and Nice Photos!  
      BloodyPenguin, Feb 3, 2016
    2. SoundApprentice
      Thanks BloodyPenguin. I always try to tell it how it is (to my ears). No frills, no fuss.
      SoundApprentice, Feb 3, 2016
    3. Ashwin HL
      good review!
      Ashwin HL, Feb 4, 2016
  3. HiFiChris
    I am not sure whether my observations are somehow valuable, as fit was a big problem for me
    Written by HiFiChris
    Published Feb 13, 2016
    3.5/5,
    Pros - sound *might* be good if you want a low budget IEM with remote control and good accessories for little money (can't say much because of bad fit)
    Cons - I couldn't manage to get a good fit, getting a seal hurt, soft bass
    Preamble:

    The year 2016 has just started and the Chinese headphone manufacturer Brainwavz is already announcing their second new model.
    After their Omega, the second new in-ear is the XFit XF200 (http://www.brainwavzaudio.com/products/xfit-xf200-noise-isolating-sport-iem-earphones-w-3-button-remote-microphone), an inexpensive model for sports that retails for just $25 and features a fully functional three-button remote control with built-in microphone and is available in two colour options.

    I am someone who does a lot of running outside, getting a couple of thousand kilometres per year on my shoes (however less in the past one and a half years due to more review writing).
    Often I am using in-ears during the runs, however without any music most of the time – only after the half or in the last third, when I need some “support”, I usually occasionally start playback.
    Usually I’m using more balanced sounding in-ears for that purpose (and I’m therefore probably in the minority with that), and the XF200 will likely rather be tuned to a more “typical sports earphone” tonality.
    How Brainwavz’ latest inexpensive model really sounds like will be found out in this review for that the company sent me a sample for an honest evaluation.


    Technical Specifications:

    Drivers: Dynamic, 9 mm
    Rated Impedance: 16 ohms
    Frequency Range: 20 Hz ~ 20 kHz
    Sensitivity: 95 dB at 1 mW
    Rated Input Power: 10 mW
    Cable: 1.4 m Y-Cord, Copper
    Plug: 3.5 mm, Gold plated


    Delivery Content:

    The simple plastic packaging is already known from other inexpensive Brainwavz models, but is a bit wider because of the quite ample amount of accessories. The style on the exterior already indicates that the XF200 was designed for running.

    Breaking the seal, one will find the quite copious amount of included accessories which are: Brainwavz’ typical carrying case, a Velcro cable tie, a shirt clip, a pair of Comply Foam S-400 tips, one pair of double-flange silicone tips, six pairs of single-flange silicone tips (three sizes, two pairs per size), a manual/warranty card and last but not least the in-ears themselves.
     

    IMG_20160201_190603.jpg   IMG_20160201_190616.jpg
    IMG_20160201_190626.jpg   IMG_20160201_190952.jpg



    Looks, Feels, Build Quality:

    The in-ear bodies are made of lightweight plastic which however appears quite sturdy.
    Strain relief is good, although it could be better above the y-split. What I like is that a chin-slider (cable cinch) is present.
    The cable is identical to the one of many other Brainwavz models.
     

    IMG_20160201_191220.jpg   IMG_20160201_191231.jpg
    IMG_20160201_191251.jpg   IMG_20160201_191257.jpg
    IMG_20160201_191303.jpg   IMG_20160201_191327.jpg



    Comfort, Isolation:

    I have quite large ears as well as ear canals and normally no problems to get a good fit as well as seal with in-ears – with the XF200 however (whose in-ear bodies are by the way rather small), it was an enormous fiddling until I got a seal, but comfort was then extremely bad and the bodies hurt in my ears and caused warm spots. The short nozzle along with the angle and shape seem not to harmonise well with my ears’ geometry this time. But well, for testing I took the pain and wore the in-ears for up to three hours a day (ouch!).
    By the way, the ear-hooks are not made of memory wire but rubber pipes that keep their shape very well and are soft plus unobtrusive. In my ears, microphonics are completely eliminated.

    Although I didn’t get a good fit, I sort of got a seal (isolation was about average).
     

    IMG_20160201_191755.jpg   IMG_20160201_191818.jpg



    Sound:

    For testing, I used my iBasso DX80, LH Labs Geek Out IEM 100 and my DAP-only iPhone 4 that was optimised for audio playback. I used the largest stock single-flange tips.

    I can’t exclude that I didn’t have a 100% air-tight seal (although the “hum test” was positive), so the following impressions should be taken with a big grain of salt and are highly subjective, although I usually try to be more objective, which is however not as much possible this time due to the bad comfort I got with this particular Brainwavz model.

    Tonality:

    I would describe sound in general as being warm, smooth and bassy.

    Aural-wise experiments with an EQ, sine generator as well as the measurement in my Vibro Veritas coupler show a bass emphasis of clearly more than 13 dB below 50 Hz that however surprisingly sounds notably lesser when listening to music – the RHA T20 that has less level between 50 and 200 Hz (according to EQ and sinus experiments plus my Vibro Veritas plots) sounds subjectively much bass-heavier in that area although my plots as well as EQ tweaks and sine sweeps actually indicate that it has less bass than the Brainwavz – probably due to a not 100% correct seal with the Brainwavz wherefore a good amount of bass energy and pressure disappears through a tiny air gap? It could be possible, at least the XF200 sounds quite bassy but is still barely below being bass-heavy in my ears; instead it sounds just bassy, warm and smooth although there is some emphasis between 50 and 100 Hz with respective recordings, however I don’t get it with the typical pressure and energy that should normally be present with an emphasis that large (one of my reference headphones for neutrality is the Etymotic ER-4S and I also “privately” generally prefer neutral or very balanced in-ears, so I am used to more accurate sound and also have a very wide listening experience and models with different sound characteristics, reaching from €5 to 2000 in my private inventory).

    However that be, here are now my extremely subjective impressions: down from 600 Hz, level starts slowly increasing, with its climax around 50 Hz. The upper bass at 100 Hz along with the lower fundamental tone area at 200 Hz are slightly less emphasised (with cross-comparisons and EQ adjustment-comparisons it shows about 8 dB) however still quite present and bassy. Sub- and mid-bass are equally present and the XF200 is able to reproduce cellar rumble with pertinent level.
    Shortly before 1 kHz level is somewhat recessed; voices are therefore both warm as well as slightly hollow sounding, overall though more on the darker and warmer side. At 4.6 kHz there is a very small peak in my ears; above, level is in the background. Treble in general seems smooth and is quite a bit in the background from the middle highs on, although not to the extent that it sounds dull but only a bit relaxed-smooth-dark and warm.

    Due to the 4.6 kHz peak, impact of percussion instruments sounds somewhat artificial (somewhat metallic and dull), which is however no real criticism given the low price. Overall, there are no distinct peaks or dips in the frequency response, so XF200’s sound is very even and relatively well-made.

    Resolution:

    I’ll just claim that the XF200 is one of the better and more coherent dynamic single-driver in-ears in the price range below $50.
    There is not much missing for it to be able to compete with the ADV.sound M4 or TTPod T1 (non-E) and the general level of details is on a very solid level that obviously surpasses that of a simple (sports) in-ear for $25.
    Midrange and treble appear appropriate in terms of details and also sound more or less differentiated, and also the lows integrate harmonically into the rest, although they could be a bit more arid and detailed (bass is more on the soft side, with quite slow impact however rather quick decay). Nonetheless, the XF200 is easily worth the asked price.

    Soundstage:

    The Brainwavz’ spatial presentation is quite three-dimensional and airy in my ears, with about average extension in both ways. Width and depth are about equally present and sound is relatively three-dimensional in my ears.
    The soundstage doesn’t seem congested, though it is also not as airy as Pai Audio DR1 or Havi B3 Pro 1’s.
    A really spot-on and sharp instrument separation as well as layering of course shouldn’t be expected at this price and just as expected, layering on the z-axis is a bit blurry, though the soundstage fortunately also does not seem too muddy.


    Conclusion:

    As a result of the bad fit I got, I can’t say that my descriptions of tonality are 100% accurate and therefore I also cannot say whether the sound would be bass-heavy with a more comfortable fit (and therefore probably better seal). I’d be very interested in hearing the opinion of people who were able to get a good fit with an air-tight seal.
    Anyway, in terms of general sound quality based on price as well as value, the XF200 is a convincing headphone for little money – if there wasn’t this really bad comfort in my ears.

    With a 70% (sound quality for the price; 4.5 out of 5 stars) to 30% (comfort; 1 out of 5 stars) weighting, I still get to a very respectable result of 3.45 out of 5 stars – who is able to get a good fit with the XF200 will get a quite convincing and bassy sports in-ear with plenty of accessories as well as an in-line cable remote for little money.
  4. Hisoundfi
    Sporty build and sound. The Brainwavz XFIT XF200 sports in-ear monitor with microphone and remote for Android and IOS
    Written by Hisoundfi
    Published Feb 13, 2016
    4.0/5,
    Pros - Consumer friendly and energetic sound signature, Secure over the ear fit, Universal three button microphone/remote, Great accessories package
    Cons - Bass and upper midrange will be overwhelming for some, Finding the right fitting tip is a challenge
    20160213_212514.jpg
    At the time of the review, the Brainwavz XF200 was was on sale on Amazon’s website. Here is a couple links to their listing of the product:
     
    http://www.brainwavzaudio.com/products/xfit-xf200-noise-isolating-sport-iem-earphones-w-3-button-remote-microphone
     
    http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B01A5D5XF8?keywords=brainwavz%20xfit%20xf-200&qid=1455387389&ref_=sr_1_2&sr=8-2
     
    Introduction
    With the new year comes resolutions for many of us. For me, this year’s resolution was to lose some weight and exercise more. With that comes a larger grocery bill and a gym membership. This added expense cuts into a person’s budget for various other stuff like a pair of earphones to use while working out.
     
    When Brainwavz emailed me to see if I would be interested in reviewing their recent release of X-fit sports earphones it was perfect timing. Not only would I be able to review them, I could put them to the test by bringing them to the gym.
     
    Disclaimer
    I was given an opportunity to review the XF200 in exchange for my honest opinion and review. I am in no way affiliated with Brainwavz. I would like to take this time to personally thank Pandora for the opportunity.
     
    My Background
    I AM NOT a numbers and graphs audiophile or sound engineer. Personal audio enthusiast? Absolutely! Headphone junkie? Possibly…
     
    There’s something about quality DAPs, DACs, Amplifiers and Earphones that intrigues me, especially if they can be had for low prices. I will buy the $5 to $500 earphone that looks promising, in hopes that I will discover that one new gem that can compete with the big names in this industry. If you look at my Head-Fi profile you will see that I have purchased MANY different headphones and earphones, ranging from from dirt cheap to higher end products. For me, this hobby is more about getting great price to performance ratio from a product, and have a variety of different gears with varying builds and sound to mix and match. With personal audio gear, we tend to pay a lot of money for minor upgrades. One thing I’ve learned over the last few years is that just because a headphone has a higher price tag, it doesn’t mean that it has superior build and sound quality.
     
    I’m always looking for great audio at a great price. I’m after headphones and IEMs that give me the “WOW” factor. I can appreciate different builds and sound signatures as long as they are ergonomic, and the sound is pleasing to the ear. It is my pleasure to share my experiences with audio products and make recommendations based gear I have owned and used.
     
    REVIEW
    20160213_211227.jpg
    The XF200 comes in a lime green and navy blue box with white accents. The front of the box features a description of the product and a picture of the housing.
     
    20160213_211623.jpg
    The back of the box displays a brief description of the product along with a list of specifications and accessories.
     
    20160213_211632.jpg       20160213_211645.jpg
     
    The left side displays a two year warranty and indicates that they XFIT earphones come with Comply Foam tips. The right side of the box features the same information and also explains the functions of the three button remote and microphone.
     
    Specifications and Accessories

     

    Specifications:

    1. Drivers: Dynamic, 9 mm
    2. Rated Impedance: 16 ohms
    3. Frequency Range: 20 Hz ~ 20 kHz
    4. Sensitivity: 95 dB at 1 mW
    5. Rated Input Power: 10 mW
    6. Cable: 1.4 m Y-Cord, Copper
    7. Plug: 3.5 mm, Gold plated

    Included Accessories:

    20160213_212102.jpg
    1. 1 x Comply S-400 medium foam tips
    2. 6 x Pair silicone tips (2x S/2x M/2x L)
    3. 1 x Pair dual flange silicone tips (M/L)
    4. 1 x Velcro cable tie
    5. 1 x Shirt clip
    6. 1 x Brainwavz earphone carrying case
    7. 1 x Instruction manual & Warranty card


     
    Housings
    20160213_212550.jpg
    When the XFIT earphones first came in, the first thought that came to mind were the Meelectronics M6. They have a very similar shape, which definitely is not a bad thing. The XF200 is a very nice design geared to fit securely and stay in place, even during physical activity.
     
    20160213_212417.jpg
    The XF200 has a plastic shell. My pair was clear, but you can also get them with a black shell. I really like the way the clear shells reveal the innards of the XF200. The shell exterior has an imprinted brainwavz logo.
     
    Cable, Y-Split, Cable Jack, Strain Reliefs
    20160213_212646.jpg
    The XF200 cable is a rubber jacketed cable that is pretty standard for budget earphones. There is a small amount of spring and memory. The cables above the Y-split are somewhat flimsy and has a unique style of gray memory wire where the cable attaches to the housings. The memory wire doesn’t bend into place like most earphones, it’s preset and springs back into the same shape when bent. I really like this design and feel it works very well. XF200 has a Y-split that is more than adequate and is made of a firm rubber material. There is a handy chin/neck slider that works well. The cable jack is a sixty degree plug that has a housing with the same rubber material as the Y-split. Strain reliefs are very well done and I have no concerns about the wires shorting out any time soon.
     
    Functionality
    20160213_212715.jpg
    A three button microphone and remote is located about eight inches down from the right side of the XFIT housing. Brainwavz has “cracked the code” with their recent releases, offering a three button remote design that works for both Android and IOS. When talking to friends and family, they reported my voice coming through at a three on a scale from one to five.
     
    Ergonomics, Fit and Microphonics, Isolation
    Brainwavz gets an A in this category. The XF200 is a great fit that works great for gym use. I really liked the preset style of memory wire. It was simple to hook them over my ear, then pop them in my ears. Finding the right tip was a bit of a challenge for me but once I found the right ones I had no problems getting a seal. Microphonics are pretty much non existent because of the over the ear fit. Isolation is pretty average for an in-ear monitor. As with all in-ear monitors, getting a good seal is important to achieve the best sound possible.
     
    Sound Review
    I did my demo with my usual gear. I used an LG-G3 with the latest firmware for portable and smartphone use, and either my Shanling H3 or Sony Walkman F806/Cayin C5 amplifier for a high fidelity portable use. For desktop use I used my Toshiba Satellite Laptop in combination with a HIFIMEDIY Sabre ES9023 USB DAC/Bravo Audio Ocean Tube amplifier with a Mullard 12AU7 tube for higher impedance, and a Fiio E18 USB DAC & Amplifier in both high and low gain. Both were run at 24 bit, 96000 Hz. I also tested them with other DAPs and amplifiers as well. I used Google Music downloaded in its highest download quality (320 KBPS) and I also streamed FLAC via Tidal streaming service. I also used purchased and downloaded tracks in MP3, FLAC, WAV and DSD. I make sure that any gear I test has sufficient playtime before writing a review.
     
    I used my usual same songs for testing gear:
    “Limit to your love” by James Blake (bass speed, punch, response)
    “Doin’ it Right” by Daft Punk (sub bass)
    “Get lucky” by Daft Punk (bass to midrange transition resolution, male vocals)
    “Madness” by Muse (soundstage, separation)
    “Some nights” by Fun (soundstage and male vocals)
    “The soundmaker” by Rodrigo y Gabriela (texture and imaging)
    “Bassically” by Tei Shi (bass to midrange resolution, female vocals)
    “Skinny Love” performed by Birdie (female vocals, acoustic playback)
    “One” by Ed Sheeran (male vocals, acoustic playback)
    “Outlands” from the Tron Legacy Soundtrack (symphonic presentation, imaging)
    “Sultans of swing” by Dire Straits (detail, separation, balance)
    “And Justic for All” by Metallica (driver distortion, treble response, rock playback)
    “Ten thousand fists” by Disturbed (driver distortion, treble response, rock playback)
     
    Note: Other tracks were used, but the listed songs were primarily used to assess and break down the gear’s response.
     
    Source Selection
    The XF200 is designed to be used with a smartphone. Don’t try to reinvent the wheel on this one. You aren’t going to blow people’s minds by hooking them up to a five thousand dollar desktop tube amp. Use them with your smartphone when on the go or working out and you will enjoy them for how they were intended to be.
     
    Sound Signature
    BrainwavzXF200.png
    The XF200 is a high energy sound with an forward bass response and aggressive upper midrange. The somewhat consumer friendly V-signature is great for modern genres and is a good tuning for making the most of your daily commute or workout.
     
    Bass
    The XF200 has a very strong bass response that is subbass focused. The bass has plenty of depth and extension, and offers more rumble than punch. It isn’t the tightest bass you will ever hear, but the response is very good for a budget in-ear monitor. Subbass rolls down into a controlled midbass response. The XF200 bass is very enjoyable and works great for its intended purpose and price range.
     
    Midrange
    Midrange trails behind the bass response but maintains a good amount of clarity. For the most part vocals and instruments sound very natural with an almost cold response. The lowest point on the frequency response is around 1k and leads into an aggressive upper midrange. with spikes at around 3-4k. This gives the XF200 a high energy to its sound without seeming rolled off.
     
    Treble
    Treble dips at sibilant ranges and doesn’t pick up until after this range. This makes the upper frequencies of the XF200 seem forward while avoiding harshness. This is very well done and I really enjoy them for this reason.
     
    Soundstage and Imaging
    The tuning makes the XF200 seem spacious and entertaining. While the soundstage is good for a budget in-ear, the peaks and valleys in their response doesn’t yield a remarkable sense of imaging. I would compare them to taking your home stereo and tweaking the equalizer to maximize bass forwardness and tweaking the upper frequencies to counteract it.
     
    Comparisons
     
    Meelectronics M6 ($15 to $30 USD on many sites)
    The XF200 and M6 not only look similar, they sound the same as well. After measuring and listening to them, I have to say that I wouldn’t be surprised if these are a rebranded M6 driver.
     
    Since I can’t really say that they sound much different, the differences to compare are the cable and accessories, both of which I can honestly say that Brainwavz has an advantage. The clamshell case and three button remote makes them a better and more phone friendly option.

     
    Moxpad X3 ($20 to $30 USD on many sites)
    The Moxpad X3 is another over the ear fit that again has a very similar sound to the XF200. If anything the X3 seemed to be a little smoother at upper frequencies. The X3 is slightly less fatiguing, but also less crisp and exciting.
     
    The X3 has a somewhat exclusive detachable cable and single button remote. The detachable cable of the X3 at this price range simply doesn’t make much sense, and the three button remote of the XF200 is more useful, especially when on the go or working out. I prefer the memory wire of the XF200 as well. I give an advantage to the XF200 for accessories. Their clamshell case is epic.

     
    Conclusion
    There’s a lot of budget earphone options that will work for commuting and using at the gym. Brainwavz has tweaked their design and made something that will appeal to the masses. They have combined a great fit, ergonomics and sound that many will enjoy, and at a very reasonable price.
     
    20160213_212800.jpg
    Thanks for reading and happy listening!
      cpauya, peter123 and twister6 like this.
  5. B9Scrambler
    Brainwavz XFit XF-200: Sportster
    Written by B9Scrambler
    Published Feb 16, 2016
    3.5/5,
    Pros - Lots of accessories - Solid build quality - Good sound for the price
    Cons - Getting a comfortable fit can be a massive challenge
    Greetings Headfi,
     
    Today we are going to take a look at Brainwavz's second new release of 2016, the Xfit XF-200 sports in-ear earphone. Brainwavz has been on a roll this year releasing some affordable new models, starting with the Omega, followed up by the XF-200 and BLU-200 Bluetooth model. I quite enjoyed the Omega, so let's see how the XF-200 stacks up.
     
    Disclaimer:
     
    The XF-200 was provided by Brainwavz in exchange for a fair and unbiased review. There is no monetary gain for me. I just get to listen to a cool new iem and share my thoughts with the community.
     

     
    DSCN0368.jpg       DSCN0372.jpg       DSCN0370.jpg
     

     
    Packaging and Accessories:
     
    Like the Omega the XF-200 comes in a fairly standard plastic encasement, plastered with imagery of joggers. Brainwavz is making it very clear who these are intended to be used by. Open the box and slide out the inner plastic tray to be welcomed by a slew of accessories.
     
    Brainwavz is giving you some serious value for your $25. You get their excellent hard case, a burly shirt clip, a Velcro strap for wrapping up your earphones, a set of Comply T-400 ear tips, a pair of silicone dual-flange tips, and two sets each of their single flange tips in small, medium, and large. In all, that's 8 pairs of tips. Much better than the three pairs you get with most earphones.
     
    Comfort, Design, Isolation:
     
    I really like the design of the XF-200. It's quite reminiscent of similar sports offerings from MeeElec and Moxpad, but with it's own flair. The "speed lines" and inset Brainwavz logo are subtle. Even with the black housings, in the right light and at the right angle you can just barely see through the bottom of the housing and catch a glimpse of the driver.
     
    Unfortunately, the nice design did not seem to play nicely with my ears and getting a good fit was more of a challenge than I like. Once I finally found a set of tips that provided a good seal, it still took a good bit of twisting and finagling to get the XF-200 into a nice position, especially with my left ear.
     
    The built in ear guides I also found pretty unnecessary. They didn't do much to keep the cable behind my ear and ended up creating a ton of noise, especially whenever they rubbed up against my glasses. I would have liked to see Brainwavz install some traditional memory wire, or forego it altogether and include some removable ear guides.
     
    I found the XF-200 to isolate pretty well. Slightly above average for a vented dynamic driver.
     

     
    DSCN0373.jpg       DSCN0391.jpg       DSCN0392.jpg
     

     
    Microphone and Controls:
     
    *Since I didn't notice any significant differences between the mic on the Omega and XF-200, this part might seem a little familiar if you read my review of the Omega.*
     
    It's always nice to see a manufacturer include an inline mic with full three-button controls at this price. While call quality was fine, not bad but not amazing either, it's the versatility of this unit that impressed me most.
     
    Most inline mic+control setups work with either Android or iDevices, offering only limited functionality in the one it doesn't specialize in. The setup on the XF-200 does it all, offering full use of the three button remote on both mobile platforms. It worked flawlessly controlling my HTC One M8, and could be used to start/stop music, end calls, and skip/scan through tracks. While I didn't get to test call functionality on my iPod Touch, I was able to do everything I could on Android with the added functionality of volume control. Sweet.
     
    I also wanted to note that the two raised dots on the centre button made blind-use of the control unit a breeze. Simple, but really effective.
     
    Sound Quality:
     
    I was actually quite surprised at how much I liked the sound of the XF-200. Getting a good seal was a major challenge, but integral to properly enjoying them. The only stock tips that provided anything close to a good seal were the included dual flanges, but they really nerfed the XF-200's bass output. In the end I swapped out to an ancient pair of large, oddly shaped single flange tips from a pair of near-release Skullycandy Smokin' Buds, before they moved to their more traditional tips with the imprinted Skullycandy logo. With these tips I was able to get a great seal, comfort improved, and the excellent sound quality of the XF-200 was able to shine through.
     
    Brainwavz boasts on the box that the XF-200 features crisp, clear, bold sound. I can't argue with that. It's pretty darn accurate. Treble is slightly cold and crispy in it's presentation, and is quite sharp and detailed with solid extension. Compared to the Omega which I found loose and sloppy, the XF-200 is very clean and tight.
     
    Mids are reasonably forward, very clear, and detailed. If you are the kind of person that works out to podcasts or vocal only files, the XF-200 will be perfect. I also found that guitars were represented with a realism and grit you hardly ever find at this price point. Sit down and listen to Funkadelic's "Maggot Brain" and you'll get where I'm coming from. Pure bliss. Vocals can come across a little sterile, but it works for the most part with the slightly cold presentation.
     
    The XF-200, while not bass-lite in any way, was not anywhere near as bassy as I was expecting after reading other reviews. Mid-bass was toned down quite a bit, which I appreciate, leaving you with excellent sub-bass extension. These 9mm drivers can put out some serious rumble when called upon. Bass was also shockingly quick and nimble, and much more capable than I was expecting. It could handle some of the insanely quick double-bass drum moments you find in a lot of metal songs (Dragonforce represent) that usually leave budget iems a confused mess.
     

     
    DSCN0382.jpg       DSCN0383.jpg       DSCN0387.jpg
     

     
    Overall:
     
    Once I got past the painful fit issues, the XF-200 surprised me as a very capable earphone. They offered up a reasonably balanced sound, solid build quality, and a very generous pile of accessories which was another plus. There are other earphones that I enjoy more in this sports-focused category, the KZ ZS1 most notably, but I can't think of anything else that gives you such good value for your money when you take into account the full package. Great job Brainwavz!
     
    Thanks for reading.
     
    - B9Scrambler
     
    ************************
     
    Some test albums:
     
    System of a Down - Toxicity
    Skindred - Union Black
    Gorillaz - Plastic Beach
    Broken Bells - Broken Bells (2010)
    Supertramp - Crime of the Century
    The Crystal Method - The Crystal method (2014)
    Slipknot - The Subliminal Verses: Vol. 1
    Evil Nine - They Live
     
    Equipment:
     
    HTC One M8
    Topping NX1
    Plantronics Rig USB Amp
     
      cpauya likes this.
  6. mark2410
    Brainwavz XFit XF-200 Quick Review by mark2410
    Written by mark2410
    Published Mar 2, 2016
    4.5/5,
    Pros - Look awesome. Sound awesome. Silly cheap.
    Cons - Kinda a little over bassy for my tastes, if you think of that as a “problem.”
    Brainwavz XFit XF-200 Quick Review
     
    Thanks to Brainwavz for the sample.
     
    Full review here http://www.head-fi.org/t/800285/brainwavz-xfit-xf-200-review-by-mark2410
     
    Brief:  Brainwavz do sporty.
     
    Price:  US$25 or about £18
     
    Specifications:  Drivers: Dynamic, 9 mm, Rated Impedance: 16 ohms, Frequency Range: 20 Hz ~ 20 kHz, Sensitivity: 95 dB at 1 mW, Rated Input Power: 10 mW, Cable: 1.4 m Y-Cord, Copper, Plug: 3.5 mm, Gold plated
     
    Accessories:  You get a case, Velcro cable tie, shirt clip, 4 pairs of silicon tips and a pair of Comply’s.  It’s a superb bundle for the price.
     
    Build Quality:  It’s all plastic and very light weight but it’s nicely put together.  For the price of them they feel superb.
     
    Isolation:  Pretty good for a dynamic.  It’s at the better end of a dynamics typical range so it’s easily enough for most normal situations.  You know, on a bus, walking out and about.  Not really flight or Tube levels but would be do occasionally.  Its more than easily enough to block out the traffic sounds that your used to so remember you have to use your eyes to compensate, or get squished.
     
    Comfort/Fit:  Excellent.  They must be worn up which I’m fine with and I has no issues, a largely perfect fit for my ears.
     
    Aesthetics:  Love them.  Just look at them, the clear plastic housings look awesome.
     
    Sound:  Outstanding for the pennies.  Bassy as you would naturally expect, big but not crazy so, the mids do their very best to keep up with the bass creating an overall warm, richly bassy sound.  The treble being the hardest bit to nail does the wise thing and dampened down.  Enough to keep you aware of all that’s going on but even in highly trebly tracks they never dominate.  The bass is clearly what’s in charge with the treble just dashing in here and there to paint the appropriate acoustic picture.  These however are tuned with pop centric bass.  They are gym aimed at earphones so unsurprisingly they pair up with just the sort of thing you’d find on “Now That’s What I Call Running”  fast paced rhythmic, energy filled bouncy pop.  However if you want they can also do a nicely rich and laid back presentation.  A little heavy, a little slow for sure at times but as is so often the case, the price tag comes into play.  These cost less than your monthly gym membership, potentially considerably less.  That is their biggest claim to fame as it were, they are stupidly cheap yet still sound good.
     
    Value:  Excellent.  A great earphone, great looking, great sounding and then to top it off it comes with a great bundle.
     
    Pro’s:  Look awesome.  Sound awesome.  Silly cheap.
     
    Con’s:  Kinda a little over bassy for my tastes, if you think of that as a “problem.”
  7. suman134
    Basshead? apply here.
    Written by suman134
    Published Mar 5, 2016
    4.0/5,
    Pros - Nice SQ, Super bass, Looks beautiful, Fitment is awesome, Nice package.
    Cons - Super bassy. Some of my friends struggled with fit.

     
    Intro:-
     
      Brainwavz as we all know is best known for its bang for buck products. Now they have added one more to their list or inexpensive earphone, XF200 with a 9mm driver doing all the hard work.
    This earphone is a first from Brainwavz, as far as I know they never had an earphone for Sports activities, I am not sure if this will have a successor or not. They do have earphones like R1, S1 and R3 with over ear design but never one made of plastic which is transparent!! Not a big deal though, but it looks beautiful.
     
     Designed with a 3-button controller built into the cable, comes in two colours, black and white with white being the transparent one and is priced $25. Available on Brainwavzaudio.com, Amazon.com, Amazon.co.uk and other authorized Brainwavz resellers around the globe.
     
     What I have with me here is the clear white or transparent one. You can buy one from here.
     
    http://www.brainwavzaudio.com/products/xfit-xf200-noise-isolating-sport-iem-earphones-w-3-button-remote-microphone
     
     It will face tough competition from other cheaper earphones like PL-30, Meelec M-6, Piston 3 and even BE-09.
    IMG_20160202_181746.jpg   IMG_20160202_181807.jpg
     
    IMG_20160202_181813.jpg   IMG_20160202_182349.jpg
     
     P.S. I would like to thank Pandora and Brainwavz for this review unit.
     
    Accessories, Ergonomics and Miscellaneous:-
     
     Unlike the cheaper Omega, thankfully XF200 comes with the all too familiar Brainwavz carry case. Inside one can find a pair of S-400 tips with 6 more pairs of tips in 3 sizes, there is a pair of double flang tips too. A cable clip and a cable tie complete the package
    .
     I personally like its fitment, ergonomically its really nice, not big, neither heavy, fits perfectly and with its supple cable guides it fits easily. Thanks to its design you can sleep side on with this earphone.
     
     As I said earlier XF200 is made of plastic which looks nice. It has enough stress relievers on the earpiece end and the cable is virtually similar to the omega or Jive. 60 degree 3.5mm jack with good stress reliving, Brainwavz style Y splitter and cable slider. The cable is strong and not much bouncy one should use the cable clip to keep it in place though. At 140 cm, this cable is long enough for anyone who is not excessively tall.
     
     One can see or feel a bump on the left ear piece’s stress reliever, there are proper L/R markings too but you just cant wear it on the wrong ear, can you?
     Isolation is not bad, isolates enough for casual listening.
     
     Thanks to its wearing style microphonics is not a thing to bother about.
     
    IMG_20160202_182508_HDR.jpg   IMG_20160202_182811_HDR.jpg
     
    IMG_20160202_182951_HDR.jpg   IMG_20160202_183109_HDR.jpg
    IMG_20160223_115320_HDR.jpg
     
     
    Remote and mic:-
     
     It has a 3 button remote to control music and pick or end calls, the unit is plastic though build quality is good. My Redmi has feature to assign volume buttons to skip tracks or control volume. When it’s set to control volume, middle button does everything else. Picks calls, ends calls, plays and stops music when not in call, skips ahead with a double tap and goes back with 3 clicks. Works fine with all android phones.
     
     When volume buttons are assigned to skip tracks back and forth, you can’t control volume from your remote.
     
     Mic’s voice quality is just acceptable.
     
    IMG_20160223_115044_HDR.jpg   IMG_20160223_115239_HDR.jpg
     
    Sound Quality:-
     
     As the price tag and label suggests, it is not something that will blow your mind with superb quality but it has its strengths, its description says something for it, its crisp, clearer too, and yeah, kind of bold and Man!! Booming beats?? There is plenty to it booming.
     
     Keep no doubts, just like the Omega, this too is a seriously bassy earphone. Everything else is good but it’s the bass that takes the center stage. Its signature is warm and slightly bright, overall its V shaped too.
     
     Before we start let me tell you that XF200 is burned for more than 70 hours and I have used Brainwavz S0 tips and stock FX200 tips. For this earphone, tips do matter, Stock narrow tips are really bassy so I used Black and red core S0 tips with wider bore which calms the bass, still bassy!!
     
     Don’t you dare to use an amp!! Want to damage your ears or what? Just stick to your phone or PMP.
     
    IMG_20160223_113858.jpg   IMG_20160223_113912.jpg
     
    IMG_20160223_113958.jpg   IMG_20160223_114255_HDR.jpg
     
    IMG_20160223_114351_HDR.jpg   IMG_20160223_114449_HDR.jpg
     
    IMG_20160223_114610_HDR.jpg  
     
    IMG_20160223_114841_HDR.jpg   IMG_20160223_115239_HDR.jpg
     
    Bass:-
     
     As I said it’s a bassy earphone and there is plenty of bass, it doesn’t like to wait, goes boom whenever it can. Moves enough air, has plenty of thump and the overall quantity is big. With this much of bass an earphone cannot be fast and it shows, its muddy, has below par decay. Its not JVC Ha-fx type bass which is seriously mid bassy and slams like a brick!! XF200 has a softer approach with plenty of sub bass and good mid-bass presence. It’s more like a cushy and soft type of bass which doesn’t strain much (still bothers me, I am not a bass lover I think).
     
     Clarity and details are good for its price, even when it lacks precision and accuracy, you are not going to miss any beat for sure, it will pick any type of movement in the range of 20 to 200 Hz. Did I tell you that it has plenty of depth, I sadly can’t hear below 25 Hz.
     
     Being cushy, muddy and boomy leads to some bleading, not much but it does.
     
     Using wide bore tips do help, it tames the quantity a bit without losing its entertaining quality.
     
     FX200’s bass can simply be explained as full bodied and meaty. Thankfully its not over my head like Twinwoofers, they are just intolerable with really bad decay and seriously boomy bass.
     
    Mid Range:-
     
     Its mid range is in a valley but not lacking by any means, I didn’t find it as dwarf as the S0, in other words XF200 has better mid range than S0. XF200 does not have the clarity or precision or even sharpness of the Jive but it doesn’t do badly. Notes are not lean by any means, they are thick and meaty and are not sharp and it just glides, giving bass the center stage.
     
     Vocals are particularly good for its price, male vocals are slightly out of depth but have good body and clarity, not bad for sure. Female vocals on the other hand are really good, Iggy sounds really nice, Kiesza sounds simply fantastic with required amount of sharpness and energy!! You just can’t ask for more at this price. Instruments too sound nice, not exactly to the point but nothing a casual listener will notice, it doesn’t pick micro details like A151p 2nd gen and lacks accuracy still one will not miss much. It does the basics right.
     
     Just like bass, mid range too doesn’t have much depth, which makes it sound less detailed.
     
     This mid range is more than acceptable.
     
     Highs:-
     
     After the Omega I was kind of worried about XF200’s highs, with S0 leading the way without much top end extension or presence I thought 200 might be one of those ultra smooth earphones. Thankfully it’s not.
     
     It doesn’t have presence like Jive but it’s not lacking like Omega or S0. Extension too is nothing to complain about. It doesn’t exactly jump out with sparking presence like Titan-1 or isn’t even sharp too but makes its presence felt with enough instrument work.
     
     Layering and separation are below average but placement of instruments is acceptable.
     
     Good thing about this high end is its not bothering with longer listening sessions. Doesn’t cause any discomfort at all.
     
     All in all XF200’s highs are acceptable.
     
    Conclusion:-
     
     XF200 is not waterproof or even sweat resistant but with its secure and comfortable fitment it is acceptable for activities in gym or for casual jogging or walking.
     
     It will suit anyone who is looking for a nice and secure fit with plenty of bass, better than average sound quality wise and good when it comes to build quality. It will make a nice gift for your gym going friend, your better half or even for your boss!!
     
     It’s not as good as the piston3 which is retailing for $17 and is far more refined but XF200 it is better than ES18, Omega, CX200 or even FX-40. Doesn’t stand against something like VSD2 for sure but is good for $25 and are on par with RP-HJE-190.
     
     It’s not an earphone for detail seekers, not for those who don’t like bass or are not comfortable with its wearing style.
     
     Thanks for reading guys!! Cheers.
     Have a nice day, enjoy.
     

  8. shockdoc
    Nice IEM for the price with some caveats.
    Written by shockdoc
    Published Mar 6, 2016
    3.5/5,
    Pros - Very good sound for the price, cool design.
    Cons - Somewhat difficult to get a good seal (very tip dependent) but almost impossible to maintain a good seal while moving/exercising. Isolation.
    Let me start by saying that I'm sort of a Brainwavz fanboy and I typically love their 'house sound'. I was especially excited to review this particular offering because I use my IEM's predominately to exercise whether it be running, weight lifting or participating in active sports like snow skiing and cycling.
     
    Thanks to Brainwavz for the demo pair. I have no affiliation with their company or any other company or entity in the industry.
     
    Also, I will not be adding any photos (there are plenty in other reviews) since my camera is currently being used by my lovely wife for a family project. And this review will deal more with the XF-200's suitability as a sport IEM than with the actual sound of the headphone...although as you'll see I liked the sound very much.
     
     
    I was EXTREMELY excited to try this IEM when it was announced as it, to my knowledge, is the first real 'sports' specific IEM that Brainwavz has offered. Also glimpsing it online I was excited by the look/design.
     
    Alas, when it arrived I was somewhat disappointed that the cables weren't detachable like on the Meelectric M6 Pro. But since it retails for half the price it can be excused for not including that feature, although I doubt I'm alone in being willing to pay double the asking price for an upgraded future XF-200 that would include detachable cables. 
     
    Typical good Brainwavz kit (case, tips including Complys, etc.)
     
    A quick listen OOTB let me know this was going to be a nice Brainwavz offering even if initially the treble was a tiny bit 'crunchy' and the bottom end a tad bloated/boomy. No problem...as a true believer in the Church of the Holy Burn In I just plugged them into my burn in rig and forgot about them for a few days. I didn't count the hours (typically 50-100 for some of my other IEM's) as at this budget price I doubt most will burn them in at all.
     
     
     
    So here we are ready for some serious listening.  But first, getting the fit right proved to be a little bit tricky. The biggest factor appeared to be tip selection as too small a tip allowed the housing too far into my ear and proved uncomfortable as well as providing a poor seal and too large a tip left the IEM sticking out too far and apparently the weight and/or angle of the housing dislodged the IEM with minimal movement. I probably tried at LEAST 30 different tips before settling on one that seemed to provide the best compromise. I should note here that I also tried the included Complys and they solved some of the fit problems I was having however I've never been a big fan, finding them to more often than not attenuate the upper ranges of frequency. Perhaps it's the size/shape/angle of my particular ear canal but I had a tough time getting them comfortable and sealed. I finally settled on an 'olive' shaped medium tip that seemed to work the best with the least amount of compromise in either fit or seal.  But that tip too broke the seal as soon as I started out on a slow run. Nothing I did seemed to help the tips stay sealed in my ear canal, least of all the cable cinch which is mounted below the mic/controls and thus cannot be tightened up to the head to help stabilize the earphones. This is, in my opinion, a design flaw that I've seen all too frequently. I realize that many (most?) users want the mic/control for use with their smart phones but I've found it more often impedes my use of the vast majority of IEMs as I can't cinch them up tight enough to lesson movement and cable microphonics. This seems especially vexing in a sports oriented IEM that is designed for over the ear use. *I should note at this point that my preferred method of wearing any IEM is over the ears with the cable cinch tight against the back of my head and the shirt clip on the back of my collar- this, for me eliminates movement/breaking the seal and cable microphonics*  I think that perhaps this could be rectified either by changing the design somehow or if the cables were removable and two cables (one with mic and one without) were included in the kit like the M6 Pro. 
     
    I found the overall sound signature to be very pleasing and definitely in my preferred range. I am among the so call "bass heads" who like a fair amount of low end to round out the sound. Live music has plenty of bass and I feel that recorded music, to sound 'real' should as well. Especially when moving about in environments with more ambient noise. Since I use my IEMs for commuting, and working out they sound much more lifelike if they have a good amount of well controlled bottom end...and don't sound like the cheap AM radio speaker in an old Ford Pinto.
     
    Of course that is moot if you can't get a good seal and/or the 'phones don't isolate well. I know a lot has been written on HeadFi about isolation and how/why it is or isn't present in a particular earphone but that particular characteristic, or lack thereof, is my second biggest problem with the XF-200. Compared to some of my other Brainwavz IEM's they don't seal out external sound as well as I think and IEM should. That's the main reason I use IEMs...to block out the world and enjoy my music. I'm not sure if it's a function of ports for the dynamic driver, the material the housing is made of (plastic) or even the overall size/surface area of the housing...or all of the above that affects isolation. I found that these earphones isolate slightly less than the Brainwavz Jazz. And while overall isolation lagged, IMO behind the Jazz, the sound signature exceeded it.  My current benchmark for isolation is the Brainwavz S5 followed not too far behind by the S3. I'd be interested in hearing an XF-200 with some kind of metal housing to see if that has any effect on the relative isolation or not. 
     
    Once burned in the sound was pleasantly weighted both top and bottom end and instrument separation and soundstage width and depth were both well above average especially for this price point. They pair particularly well with my trusty old 2nd Gen iPod Nano with the Wolfson chip. They sound wonderful also with my ancient rooted Samsung Galaxy S as well. Hi rez recordings sound particularly good. As always I didn't try them with any kind of dubstep or club music or whatever you want to call it as I don't feel that other than dynamics and frequency range you can objectively evaluate a headphone's sound quality with that type of music. As a musician I KNOW what a guitar sounds like...and a piano...and a clarinet...and.....To me the real test of any headphone is how well it reproduces the nuances of the human voice and timbre of acoustic instruments and immerses you in the music so that you feel like you're actually in the recording studio or concert hall. And the XF-200 does just that very very well at this price point. And I can pretend I'm a rock star wearing them around while I play my guitar with my little Vox headphone guitar amp since they look like stage monitors. [​IMG]
     
    One additional note. I 'owned' the M6 Pro briefly while burning them in as a gift for my son in law. While I liked them I still preferred, overall, the sound of ANY of my Brainwavz earphones. But the removable cables (with a spare in the box) on the M6 Pro are hard to pass up.
     
    I still haven't given up trying to find a suitable tip that will keep these 'phones sealed in my ear canals while running or lifting weights. I'll update this review if/when I succeed.
  9. chompchomps
    A heavy hitter at the gym
    Written by chompchomps
    Published Apr 5, 2016
    3.5/5,
    Pros - Strong bass, fantastic accessories for the price, good price
    Cons - Bass bloat might be too overwhelming, rolled off highs

    First of all, I would like to thank Brainwavz Audio and Pandora for the review unit which I would now review objectively without any biases. I used to own the M2’s from Brainwavz and after that pair died on me, I'm ready to give Brainwavz another shot. I must say I have enjoyed the M2’s thoroughly though
     
    For this review, I have tested this IEM over the course of three weeks, and taking it on a trip with me overseas where I used it while sleeping, on noisy public transports, and doing multiple short workouts.
     
    IMG_3020.jpg
     
     
    Intro
    So these are the Brainwavz IEMs that are designed for the active user, for the athlete in us. They sport a Single Dynamic 9mm driver and an over the ear design, giving the user a snug fit. At a $25 price point, one might have their reservations, but they are a budget offering with absolutely bang-for-the buck sound quality.
     
    These are the complete specifications below.
     
    Specifications:



    Drivers: Dynamic, 9 mm

    Rated Impedance: 16 Ω

    Frequency Range: 20 Hz ~ 20 kHz

    Sensitivity: 95 dB at 1 mW

    Rated Input Power: 10 mW

    Cable: 1.4 m Y-Cord, Copper

    Plug: 3.5 mm, Gold plated

     
    IMG_8245.jpg
     
     
    Packaging
    These sweet IEMs came in an assuming plastic packaging, but upon opening it, what came with it really amazes me at this price point, the standard Brainwavz case, which is one of my favorites, with just the right size to not occupy so much space in my bag, compared to the Pelican Case 1010. Included in the package is also a pair of Comply tips, not just any OEM foam tips but proper Comply ones. I was surprised how they were able to squeeze so much into such a small price point. Apart from that, they had a pair of Bi-flange tips and 3 sets of normal silicon ear tips. I used the default M sized ones which fits me like a glove. They also come with a shirt clip, to clip onto your workout attire, to prevent swinging cables getting in your way while your do burpees or other intensive activities. I found this especially useful especially during my workouts.
      IMG_8248.jpg
    Build Quality
    The IEM shells are plastic, actually, the entire IEM is made from plastic and rubber, which makes it lightweight but I am actually impressed with the build quality, it doesn’t feel cheap in anyway and has good strain relieves at the connection between the shells and the cable, and at the Y splitter as well as the termination. The strain reliefs look sturdy and could take a beating without giving way. As a IEM catered to sports and meant to take some abuse, these certainly lived up to expectations. Another point I like to point out is the engraving of the Brainwavz branding onto the shells and the Y splitter instead of printing as I believe after much use doing activities and sports, abrasion or wear might wear out the branding, making it unsightly, thus I guess kudos to Brainwavz. The cables seem to be slightly thicker than the usual cables and has a slight rubbery tactile feel to them which feels good, not sticky or too rubbery. They feel solid and just exudes quality.
     
    IMG_8133.jpg
     
    Sound
    Using the M sized eartips, the comfort surprised me. They sit flush in the ear conchae and don’t seem to budge. The shells are rather flat-ish and I could sleep with them without problems. With a good and comfortable fit, I could enjoy the sound of these to the fullest.  These came across overall as a basshead pair of earpiece, with emphasis on the strong punchy bass and extensive sub bass that extends really deep. In my opinion, as a pair of IEMs designed for active use, I would assume the user to be listening to fast paced, bassy tracks to give some extra kick to the workout, at least for me. These sounded really good while listening to artists like Alesso, Skrillex, Major Lazer. The bass had quite a bloat, which I enjoyed but does not come off as muddy or sloppy. They were accurate and sounded really pleasant. Mids wise they sounded slightly forward to me, but nothing to shout about in these regions. Vocals were smooth when listening to songs from Kodaline and Adele but not exciting or crisp like the FXT90s which I own. For the highs, they sounded like they roll off abit too quickly, and just doesn’t sound exciting and crisp, which is an area which I think this IEM could be better at. But speaking of which, these are supposed to be a fun pair of IEMs, ready to rock a workout and give thumping bass to the active user, thus I think they did the job perfectly well
     
    IMG_8250.jpg
     
    Conclusion
    For 25 bucks, I would say these are an absolute gem, I think Brainwavz has nailed it with these pair of active earphones and for those who don’t mind a wired pair of IEMs while you work out, do give these a shot at your local store, or purchase them from the Brainwavz webstore with the link below.
     
    http://www.brainwavzaudio.com/products/xfit-xf200-noise-isolating-sport-iem-earphones-w-3-button-remote-microphone

  10. thatBeatsguy
    Everyday Fast
    Written by thatBeatsguy
    Published May 1, 2016
    4.0/5,
    Pros - Energizing, consumer-friendly sound. Robust overall build.
    Cons - Fit can be annoying for some. Powerful bass will detract some listeners.

    Intro​

    [​IMG]
     ​
    TL;DR: The Brainwavz XF200 is, in and of itself, an excellent sports IEM that will go the extra mile with you and then some.
     
    Before I begin, I would like to sincerely thank Pandora at Brainwavz for providing a review sample of the Brainwavz XFit XF200 in exchange for my honest opinion. I am neither affiliated with Brainwavz or any of its staff, nor was I paid to write this review. All opinions and photos shown in this review are my own unless otherwise specified. Finally, please take the opinions expressed here with a grain of salt. Thanks!
     
    Being a rather indolent person by nature, I never find myself performing anything related to exercise, so I guess sports IEMs are a bit out of my field of expertise. But I guess exceptions can be made for an IEM coming from one of my favourite brands. Brainwavz’ XF200 represents their first product in their new XFit (CrossFit?) line, aimed at active music lovers and audiophiles alike. Will these new runners blaze to the front of the line, or will they be left behind to bite the dust? Read on and find out.
     
     

    == Aesthetics ==​

    Packaging, Accessories​

     
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    Even before the race starts, the XF200 easily catches your attention with bright, flashy colours that adorn its plastic packaging. This packaging is similar to that of the Brainwavz Jive and most of their other products priced under the $50 mark. The sides show Brainwavz’ 24-moth warranty guarantee and a Comply eartip label. On the back are written the specifications and accessories list (see the Specs section for the full list).
     
    Open the box and you’re greeted by one of Brainwavz’ trademark red-and-black hard carry cases. Open that up and you’re greeted by the earphones, seven pairs of eartips, a pair of Comply T-400s (despite the packaging saying it comes with S-400 eartips), a shirt clip, and a manual with a 2-year manufacturer warranty. What’s not to like?
     
     

    Design, Build, Microphonics​

    [​IMG]

     
    From a glance, the XF200 just has that whole M6 Pro vibe going on looks-wise, which is why I asked for the white/clear model specifically so I can better emphasise their similarities and differences.
     
    Looks- and design-wise, the two IEMs are fundamentally similar – both have an around-the-ear fit, excellent build quality, and not-so-ergonomic housings (more on this later). But despite the similarities, both IEMs are very different when it comes to the finer details – both aesthetically and sonically.
     
    [​IMG]
    But before we get to the juicy sound stuff, let’s look at the more tangible side of the XF200’s design. Unlike the M6 Pro, their around-the-ear cables lack a memory wire (which is basically a stiff, bendable metal wire built into the ear loops to provide a more “custom” fit). I don’t exactly know why the XF200 lacks this detail, but for whatever reason that may be, the lack of a memory wire in my opinion is a good thing. No more having to mould the wire around your ear when you put them on.
     
    The rest of the XF200’s build seems to be derived from the similarly-priced (and similarly excellent) Brainwavz Jive, sharing identical mic/remote units, cables, Y-splits, and 45-degree angled connectors. With everything said, all that’s left to talk about is the XF200’s housing design, but since my assessment of that will tie in very closely with the fit, scroll down a bit and I’ll explain in the next section.
     
     
     

    Fit, Comfort, Isolation​

     
    [​IMG]
    The XF200, as I stated earlier, shares another characteristic with the M6 Pro in this department – that is, both aren’t really comfortable. The XF200 took a couple minutes for me to find a good seal, although the stock eartips do fit the bill and seal quite nicely. Their actual comfort was fine as well, but their almost rectangular outer edge of the housing does tend to press against my ear, which causes a bit of discomfort. As for their isolation, since I lack actual measuring equipment, I estimate it’s also rather similar to the M6 Pro in this regard, so it's on average at best.
     
     
     
     
     
     

    == Sound ==​

     ​

    Specs​

     
    Headphone Type
    Closed-back in-ear monitor
    Driver Type
    Single 9mm dynamic
    Frequency Response
    20 – 20,000 Hz
    Rated Input Power
    10 mW
    Sensitivity
    95 dB @ 1 mW
    Impedance
    16 Ω
    Weight
    N/A
    Cable
    1.4m (~4’6”) OFC cable
    Connector
    3.5mm (1/8”) angled gold-plated TRRS connector
    Accessories
    6 sets white single-flange silicone eartips (S/M/L x2)
    1x set white double-flange silicone eartips (M)
    1x set Comply T-400 foam eartips (M)
    Carrying case
    Shirt clip
    Cable tie
    24 month warranty

     
     

    Equipment, Burn-in​

     
    The equipment used in this review is primarily a 5th-generation iPod Touch directly running the Brainwavz XF200. For the amp test, I run the XF200 through a Schiit Fulla driven from my laptop running iTunes 12 and Foobar 2k. The EQ software used in its respective test is TuneShell on iOS and Viper4Windows on PC. The test tracks I normally use to assess the earphones can be found here, although I will include links to specific songs in the review for quick, easy reference.
     
    As always, the XF200 was burned in for at least 50 hours prior to writing this review, most of which consists of direct listening time. Over that period I noted no significant changes to the sound, if any.
     
    With all that said and done, let's talk about the sound.
     
     

    Sound Quality​

    [​IMG]

    Bass:
    When you’re on the track, or at the gym, or performing any form of physical activity that bathes you in sweat, chances are you’d love some music right now. And not just any type of music – powerful, driving music with lots of bass. And the Brainwavz XF200 fits that bill right down to the penny. They've got ample amounts of punching power designed to emphasise bass registers to really pump up your jam. The deep, rumbling bassline in Haywyre's “Sculpted” is played with authority, with bass you can both hear and feel. But despite their power, they have an impressive level of control in their low end, sounding quite subdued in calmer recordings like Adele’s “He Won't Go.” However this doesn't mean they're neutral or bass-light – their bass emphasis can be heard in midrange-focused genres like Isaac Shepard’s “Looking Forward.” Nonetheless, they're still quite impressive, especially given their design and market pitch.
     
     
    Midrange:
    Typical sport IEMs are often bass-focused and leave much to be desired in other areas. But the XF200 is no typical sport IEM – it's a Brainwavz IEM. In Haywyre’s “Endlessly,” the synthesiser lead is presented with a diamond-like clarity and sheen that sounds as beautiful as the jewel looks. The guitars on Megadeth’s “Holy Wars…The Punishment Due” are portrayed with speed and ferocity, with a very smooth note-to-note transition even in the song’s blisteringly fast final section. But despite their proficiencies in louder music, they still manage to do fine in softer genres. I found their reproduction of Yiruma’s “May Be” was surprisingly pleasing, with a warm but not too weighty tone that isn't perfect but still sounds quite good.
     
     
    Treble:
    The XF200 also maintains great performance even above the 5000 Hertz mark. I found them to extend pretty smoothly, with some treble peaks around 7, 12, and 15 kHz. This results in a treble response that's bright and sparkly, but is far from encroaching on harshness. There is some noticeable sibilance, but it's far from M6 Pro levels of grating, so all in all they're pretty good here.
     
     
     
    Soundstage/Presentation:
    Their soundstage is I guess what I would call a less-than-strong point. It's not a weak point necessarily, but their soundstage just feels a bit two-directional, lacking some frontal depth in the way it's sound is presented. Daft Punk’s “Touch” is a good demonstration of this point. In retrospect, though, there isn't really much to expect from a simple sport IEM that already sounds as good as it does.
    Genre Proficiency:
    As with most if not all bassy IEMs, the XF200 excels in bass-heavy genres. I found they take things a step further, however, with their bass control that allows for a broader range of listenable genres. They're also one of the few IEMs of this calibre in which I found piano recordings quite pleasing. All in all, they're quite good as all-rounders.
     
    Summary:
    The XF200 is one capable sport IEM. I mean, sure, I haven't really had the chance to wear other sport IEMs extensively, but with my experience with IEMs in general makes me conclude that these IEMs can definitely work as a do-everything IEM.
     
     

    Other Media​

    Games:
    Despite my earlier comments about their soundstage, I found the XF200 to have a surprisingly decent game performance. Positional cues were well-defined and their overall tonal balance allows for a detailed, yet enjoyable audio experience.
     
     
    Movies:
    The XF200 again satisfies in this department with its clear upper frequencies and explosive bass. If you like watching movies on the run, the XF200 will do quite fine.
     
     

    Amplification and EQ Response​

     
    With 16 ohms of impedance and 95 dB/mW sensitivity figures, the Brainwavz XF200 has no trouble being powered by your MP3 player or phone. As such, I found no improvements from giving them a cleaner, more powerful source. As for EQ, I personally cannot recommend any settings since they already sound good enough to begin with. As the saying goes, “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.” Regardless, they respond to EQ fairly well and will handle a bump up in the low-end (or anywhere else, really) without distortion if you’re into that sort of thing.
     
     

    Value​

    There really isn’t much more to say other than that the Brainwavz XF200 is one hell of a bargain. For 30 dollars, you get an excellent sport IEM with a solid build, secure fit, great sound, and topped off with the Brainwavz signature accessories pack. What’s not to like?
     
     

    Comparison​

     
    Versus M6 Pro ($50):
    Despite looking and feeling quite similar, under the hood the XFit and the M6 Pro about as different from each other as apples and oranges. On one hand you’ve got a fun, lively, pumping sound signature; on the other, you’ve got no-holds-barred detail-wringing that at times does more harm than good (for your ears, at least). I guess, then, that I shouldn’t really go much further into detail with them that I already have, since I’d just be a broken record saying the same things over and over again. Whether you like one over the other is very preferential; so I’ll leave it to you for the final verdict here.
     
     

    Versus Brainwavz S5 ($100):

    The Brainwavz S5 is Brainwavz’ flagship S-series IEM, characterised by its driving, heavy, loud sound signature that, as my most loyal readers can recall, I loved quite particularly about two years back. Boy, how time flies.
     
    I made some parallels between these and the XF200 earlier in this review, and both do share a similar sound on the surface, but I will go on record to say that the XF200 has outclassed the S5. Yes, both have loud, energetic sound signatures, but the XF200 takes the lead with its smoother and more refined tonal balance. The bass is much more controlled on the XF200, and the rather splashy treble on the S5 is non-existent in the XF200. Their midrange is cleaner and smoother, and overall they really just sound better.
     
    On top of that, since the XF200 sounds better than the S5 – which I consider to be the best-sounding of the entire S-series – the XF200 therefore also outclasses the S3, S1, and S0.
     

    == Conclusion ==​

    [​IMG]
    So, a question is now raised: What does the Brainwavz XF200 outclassing Brainwavz’ own S-series in one fell swoop do for you, the reader looking for a new recommendation? This only goes to show just how much Brainwavz has improved over the years that I've covered and reviewed their earphones. To be able to provide such a fun, loud, but refined sound signature at a lower price point than Brainwavz’ own flagship S5 shows that they are really pushing the limits of what can be sold in an IEM at this low of a price point.
     
    Don't let the marketing pitch fool you; these IEMs can and will do more than just be your gym buddy for the day. You don't need to be a gym rat to buy one of these. No, sir – you can take these IEMs anywhere and they will gladly follow. Combining solid durability with a uniquely well-rounded sound, Brainwavz has yet again created another winner with the XFit XF200. If you're looking for a new IEM for the gym, the track, the trail, or anywhere really, the XF200 should be on your shortlist.
     
    Category
    Score
    Comment
    Packaging, Accessories
    9/10​
    Brainwavz’ familiar accessories package will more than equip first-time buyers for their basic eartip needs.
    Design, Build, Microphonics
    8.5/10​
    Sport-ready design, a robust build, and a supple cable make for a solid adventurer’s IEM.
    Fit, Comfort, Isolation
    7/10​
    Despite being rather fiddly to fit at first, they provide a secure and comfortable fit once you get the seal right.
    Bass
    8.5/10​
    Paradoxically both powerful and controlled, the XF200’s bass hits hard enough to satisfy most listeners, but doesn't blow the rest of the music out of the water.
    Midrange
    8/10​
    Fierce, feisty, and crystal-clear, the XF200’s midrange breathes energy into EDM like nothing else has a right to.
    Treble
    8/10​
    Sparkly and smoothly extended, the treble serves as the zesty lime topping to a lemonade – appropriate, complementary, and sounds oh so good.
    Presentation
    7/10​
    Good spatial width but a slight lack of depth makes their soundstage decent at best.
    Gaming, Movies
    7/10​
    Great positional accuracy and tonal balance make for an enjoyable overall experience.
    Amp and EQ Response
    7/10​
    Doesn't scale much with better equipment, but can handle EQ tweaks without much trouble.
    Value
    9/10​
     
    Total
    7.9/10​
    An audiophile-approved, sports-ready IEM at $30 dollars. What's not to like?

     
     

    Suggestions for Improvement

    None comes to mind.
     
     

    Shout-Outs, Gallery

    I would like to again thank Pandora at Brainwavz for sending out a sample of the excellent XF200 for review. I’ve been out of the earphone loop for quite some time now, so this is quite the refresher for me. With that said, be sure to check out some of my other reviews here, and stay tuned for more coming from yours truly!
     
    This has been thatBeatsguy of DB Headphones; thanks for reading!
     
     

    About the Company

    Brainwavz provides high-end earphones specifically designed for high-quality sound and tailor-made to provide the user with a solution that can be used across a wide range of audio genres and styles at affordable prices. Brainwavz believes in the idea that sound is a deeply personal experience, and strives to provide users with earphones that match their personal inclinations, to inspire with intensity. The Brainwavz name is known in many countries across the globe, and the company is continually committed to providing the best products at the best value.
     
    At Brainwavz we have a simple mission, to produce innovative, high quality audio products with a dedicated focus on high-end sound. Our strength, success and product range is built on the unique relationship with our customers. A relationship that has produced a simple and obvious result, we give real users real sound quality.”
     
    Company website: http://www.brainwavzaudio.com
     
     

    Changelog

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