General Information

Premium Select Materials
We wanted to be sure our first headphone was as good as the earphones we make. Close attention to each component is critical to achieving this goal.

The headband, joints, and pivot are all made of stainless steel. This makes the traditionally weakest parts of a headphone the strongest. The cups and hanger arms are aluminum; cast and then machined to reduce weight.

Our headphone pads are soft sheepskin, attached via magnets and replaceable. Each element’s design is there to improve your ownership experience.

Detachable Cable
Cables are where we started with ALO audio so we know the importance of including an awesome cable.

That is why we include our acclaimed Litz cable with Cascade. It has the same conductor design and materials as the Litz cable included with each of our earphones.

Here we’ve added a special cloth jacket to the cable. It minimizes microphonics and adds a level of durability to the cable for headphone use.

Designed for Portable
Cascade is the headphone that we wanted while traveling. It folds up to a compact size and is an isolated closed-back design.

It sounds excellent with your portable DAP or phone. And it scales with ease in your home set-up.


Latest reviews


Previously known as DatDudeNic
Capable yet flawed, Fun yet boring, Incredible yet lackluster.
Pros: Design, Accessories, Compactness of the cups, Robust, A wide range of customizability for general sound, bass is very fun, lively and strong, earpads feels very high quality, Detail
Cons: Headband (there were already scuff marks on the headband even when they were new), fit, Headband design, not optimal for smaller heads, availability of pads since CFA themselves has discontinued them, bulky carrying case, build feels very rough (compared to my sony z7m2), finish is easily scuffed. clunky connectors (they rattle), not a signature for everyone, genre specific.
These are not new in the market, in fact, they are close to getting, if not already discontinued. That said, I've always found these (along with the atlas) some sort of an enigma, and as such i knew i had to get a pair. When an opportunity presented itself in the form of a 50% off for a basically brand-new unit, I bought them without a second thought.

Having owned and sold a plethora of campfire's models they are nothing to write home about. The same old carton box (just bigger) riddled in a psychedelic theme. Inside that, you'll be greeted with a big and bulky pleather finished carrying case with a lanyard attached. Opening that, is where the headphones are nestled with 2 included goody bag envelopes one for the cable inside a Ziplock bag and the other, filled with the tuning filters, warranty, and a pamphlet about the headphones and the filters.

To simplify, it is fine and decent for its price point. For a $800 product it should at the very least be built like this (Metal, leather and pleather). It's not as confident feeling as my z7m2 from sony but it's forgivable since the gimmick for it was to be a 'portable' pair of cans. One thing i really hate about the build is the headband. It feels worse than the headband on my sub $150 beyerdynamic dt770 and compared to that, it's just embarrassing. The seams where the pleather ends look very barebones and diy, I can see the threads coming undone with only a strip of glue holding it in place. Not to mention the headband has started to disintegrate in some areas where it touched the inner lining of the case.

it feels like the stock campfire (pre smoky litz) iem cable in a slightly bigger gauge. Sadly, i won't be able to confirm it since they encased it in some sort of cloth which makes it look very cheap... the way this cloth behaves is weird it has lots and i mean lots of kinks, it is not smooth, and instead its quite rough. For a cable company it's just upsetting. As for its connectors, its rather good. The 3.5mm plug is in a 45-degree angle making it very pocket friendly. As for the lemo connectors, it's very robust feeling I unplug them after every session and I'm probably closing in to 60x of un/plugging and it still feels very secure definitely no complaints there.

I have to dial it to 2 clicks both sides to get it to fit me, but they never really feel in place. Sudden head movements would cause it to shift. shaking my head left to right in rapid succession would result to total removal.

A little background about me, I don't have a particular preference for sound but i can tell you that i love campfire's atlas. I sold my empire ears zeus xiv (which was a $2700 iem) because of it and it reignited my passion for this hobby but that's a story for another day. I place technicalities above anything else.

The set up i used for this write up is as follows:
Stock Cascade with the square filters (I'm currently in a trip and i havent changed the filters since middle of last year so i don't quite know which... It's probably 2T iirc)
Cayin N8 3.5mm mix of SolidState/Nutube, P/P+, Hi gain, Short Delay Sharp PCM Digital Filter, with no EQ

Generally, The signature is a typical v shape one where bass hugs you from all corners and it feels cozy and welcoming.

Very well extended but never got sharp, rather its quite smooth with enough bite to avoid dulling the detail. It is also quite good at presenting details. One thing that caught me by surprise is the airy nautre it has. Despite the amount of bass it never really masked the treble much.

As it's a typical v shaped tuning, it is pushed back. It has a rather thick lower mids which still makes the vocals sound engaging and makes up for the recessed upper midrange. As a result, everything does sound a bit heavy note wise.

It is STRONG, HEAVY, FULL, and DOMINANT (also surprisingly clean). For a 42mm driver it can push serious amounts of air! It outdoes sony's 70mm driver with ease. But despite all that air and decay it never became sluggish, in fact its quite agile (for what it can do) and very, very (oddly) textured! It can bleed to the other frequencies but i found that it is somewhat track dependent. Songs like Of Monsters and Men's From Finner, Theres a questionable amount of bleed everywhere and it as a whole, sounds very bloated and muffled, the depth is there but the attack it very much masked by the dominating midbass. On the other hand, Vampire Weekend's White Sky sounds quite at home with this tuning. Theres a bit of recession in the upper midrange but it is easily forgotten because of the thicker than usual vocals. (I picked these songs as they are released around the same time and are of the same genre).

They're not wide sounding. They're more deep than they are wide. They never felt suffocating, there's enough air and space in between instruments to avoid sounding claustrophobic. Just quelle your expectations if you're keen about these.

Attack is actually pretty good, Timbre is on the warmer side, it never sounded wrong just somewhat heavy. It never got bogged down by the bass all in all quite decent and pleasing.

Like any other cfa product, it's very easily driven. But note that it can SCALE! Off my Laptop (X1 Carbon gen7) it sounds very boring, the treble is too smoothed out it sounds as if it's all midrange specifically lower mids and very warm. Off my Sony A105, it gets better though the texture disappears and there's not much distinction between subbass and midbass, it is still clean sounding just not emphasized. And you all know about the N8.

They're fine. Definitely not worth its original asking price (back then and even more so today!). But for what they are, portable fun sounding headphones, they're pretty great! There are lots of room to tune the sound, whether it be in pad rolling, or the filters (especially the funky thing my friend told me about which was to remove all the filters including the ones that are stuck on by adhesive lol) there's a lot to be gained from a single headphone. I'm not really expecting anyone to read this but hey, i hope this updated take helped you in this intoxicating hobby of ours. Cheers!
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100+ Head-Fier
Unbalanced, overpriced and uncomfortable.
Pros: The design looks good.
Build quality seems good
Cons: Comfort is terrible.
Highs are terrible.
Mids are terrible.
Lows are boosted until it ruins everything.
This headphone is something else, in a bad way.

Its like they gave up on comfort half-way thru the design process and made the infamous hotspot.

The sound is.. Lets be clear here;

The sound is extremely low-emphasized to the point its not even funny or can be taken serious (I write this as a total techno, dnb basshead btw - deep dark tribal progressive trance and energetic dnb is my jam). Campfire has seriously imprinted themselves into my memory as tone-deaf headphone makers..

Everything is sacrificed in the Cascade for a bass that resembles an arcade cabinet. Boomy, too much, just hurtingly bad.

You try to drive the volume knob and you realize all you get for 2/3 of the knob is just all low frequencies coming forward to drown out everything else.

I'm a basshead, but I can't recommend this headphone any day of the week. The only situation this headphone shines is with epic cinematic movie soundtracks with unreal amounts of bass like think big godzilla and dinosaur shrieks.. That thunderous crackle of godzilla entering or the thunder sparking.. There it does deliver an experience similar to being blasted in the theatres on the back row just in front of the loudspeakers - It almost surprises you how loud the crackles can get, but its mostly because the sound is layered in such a way that bass is ultra-forward and everything else is recessed. Its just too much, even for mostly bass-focused music with the deepest growly wobbly bass.. Music is way too colored and lose details.

But a good headphone it is not.. And I'll never take Campfire Audio serious again.
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Leckerton audio UHA6S.MKII and Topping E30+L30
Couldn't agree more with this review, Cascade sounds terrible all over, despite proper high quality amplification.
Yeah its funny how those youtube reviewers don't really help in this case.. I don't think I've seen one single video being critic of it. But its the same with the new Logitech MX Master 3/3S mouse scrollwheel is terribly broken and misses scroll events.

Why do reviewers jump over glaring issues and bad sound+comfort? I have no idea, probably most are bought, got it for free.

There's always people who will claim theirs is perfect, because then you literally have no chance to verify.
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100+ Head-Fier
Pros: Built like a tank, Beautiful accessories set, PHAT Bass, Cloyingly warm sound, Superb Imaging, Unfatiguing sound-sig.
Cons: Heavy build, not the comfiest headphone, THICK bass masks other frequencies, highs are slightly muted.
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Take note that this review is not being sponsored, this is an accurate reflection of my opinion. YMMV

Campfire Audio is an audio brand from Portland, Oregon. Starting out as ALO Audio, a company primarily focused on selling high-end headphone and IEM cables, the Campfire Audio rebrand began its foray into the competitive IEM market.

From their universally acclaimed “Andromeda” to the entry-level “Comet”, Campfire Audio has carved a name for itself among the Porta-audio community in the last 4 years, cementing them as a reputable IEM brand.

When news came around that Campfire Audio was developing an “audiophile” pair of headphones, the hype surrounding its impending release grew. What started out as a passion-project turned out to be a tiresome, 3-year “R and D” process. As a result, the “Cascade” was born. Featuring 42mm Beryllium PVD drivers, these headphones were conceived with the purpose of emulating the “sealed-sound” of an IEM. A bit of an oxymoron, but I’ll explain further as we dive deeper into my review.


$1099 (AUD)


Cascade is a culmination of a 3 year engineering effort to bring our signature sound to a headphone.

The result is a portable, closed-back headphone that sounds and performs like it’s open. Even better; it has the unique sound you expect from a Campfire Audio headphone.

Campfire Audio

  • Frequency Response: 5Hz- 3kHz
  • Impedance: 33 Ohms (1kHz)
  • 100dB SP/mW Sensitivity
  • 5 oz (without cable) or approximately 383 g
  • Inside ID is approx.-1.5-inch-wide x 2.5 inch


Like its siblings in the Campfire Audio line-up, the box itself is sourced from an American-made, French paper company. As someone who appreciates writing on high-quality paper (Tomoe River, Midori paper company), I deeply admire a company that takes pride in its packaging. The color-saturated prints and the leafed-lettering oozes personality. Their cohesive aesthetic distinguishes their brand from the rest of the market.

A product is only as good as its packaging.

  1. Campfire Audio Cascade + Campfire Audio SPC Litz Cable
  2. Campfire Audio Headphone Case
  3. Campfire Audio Pin
  4. Filter Set (4 pairs of Damping Pads)
  5. Warranty Card
There isn’t much to criticize. The lavish leather headphone case is basically an enlarged copy of their IEM cases, with the same faux-wool lining and leather outer-shell. Sadly, the bulky, over-sized case is hardly portable, taking up too much real-estate in my backpack. The case does come equipped with a leather sling; in case someone wants to carry it around like a man-purse (not the most practical option).

Overall, the accessories included are more than substantial.

Design and Build:

The headphone is built like a brick craphouse. According to the Campfire Audio website, the headphone is almost entirely made out of machined aluminium and stainless steel. From the reinforced yokes to its oblong ear-cups, the build itself feels virtually indestructible. The all-black paint job and its angular edges reflects unpretentious, industrial design

The downside of using an all-metal (almost) build is its combined weight; it is a hefty headphone. If you’re looking for something suited for long-listening sessions, this is not for you. If you’re looking for an ultra-portable over-ear headphone, this might not be for you either. Yes, the Cascades are collapsible, but it still occupies a significant amount of space.

The ear-pads and headband-padding are made out of sheep-leather. In spite of the headphone’s heavy mass, the plush padding helps to ease the pressure exerted on my head and ears.

The lambskin pads are magnetically attached and easily switched out should they wear out over time. Do take note that the replacement pads are proprietary to Campfire Audio. The headphones are equipped with HD800 connectors; an odd choice considering the multiplicity of common connector types available in the market. Nevertheless, I have zero qualms with that decision.

My biggest gripe with the Cascades lies in its cable. While the cable is made out of high-end components, the cloth/fabric sheath retains too much memory. The cable bends and twirls uncontrollably. To make matters worse, the fabric is incredibly rigid, resulting in a cable that is barely malleable. It is almost impossible to undo the kinks that form along the cable. In addition, the Y-spit and 3.5 mm termination feel remarkably cheap.

This was a huge oversight on Campfire Audio’s part. It’s hard to not nit-pick when they’ve nailed every other aspect in its design.


The headphones aren’t exactly “closed” per se. There is a tiny, pinhole-sized vent at the top of each respective earcup. As a result, it doesn’t seal as well as other closed-backs in the market. In spite of this, it still isolates fairly well. Be prepared to turn the volume pot up in louder settings. Don’t expect Bose levels of NC.

At Home: My apartment is generally quiet. In an undisturbed setting, I used the Creative Super X-fi DAC/Amp at approximately 70/100 steps.

At a Coffee Shop: Slightly noisier, with more ambient noise in the foreground. I used the Creative X-fi DAC/Amp at approximately 82/100 steps, a slight increase from a “home” setting.

Google Pixel 2 XL Test (Now Playing): Thankfully, the placement of my Pixel 2XL next to the Cascades on my head did not trigger the now-playing feature (can’t say the same for open-back headphones).


Track List:
  • Neko Case- I wish I was the Moon
  • Mahavishnu Orchestra- Be Happy
  • God of War (PS4) OST- Valkyries
  • Fleet Foxes- Tiger Mountain Peasant Song
  • Diners- Little Pad

  • Aune X1s
  • Creative “Super X-fi” DAC/Amp
  • Shanling M0


The Cascades are easily powered by the aforementioned source. However, it performed exceptionally well with the Aune X1s in particular, as expected from its higher output power and quality DAC. Nevertheless, the Cascades are a forgiving headphone that pairs well with most sources.


PHAT. THICC. In your face. Campfire Audio held no restraint in tuning this bass beast. The low-end is bombastic, with meaty sub-bass rumble and mid-bass punch. The Cascades boast an unconventional tuning, sustaining each bass-note as long as it can.

At this price point, most audio hobbyists would expect your typical mid-range boosted, clarity-centric headphone. Campfire Audio has instead, turned that philosophy on its head.

The bass is fun, exciting and never fails to emulate the chamber-like pressure of an IEM with a proper seal. Unfortunately, the monstrous bass-response does bleed into the mids, overshadowing the vocal-range and other instrumentation in the foreground.

It is important to note that this is not your run-of-the-mill, “Beats by Dre”. I’m simply using headphones in the same price bracket as referents.


The Cascade features a treble section with air and sparkle. Stringed instruments are given ample space to breathe, never coming across as strident in the process. Oddly enough, the Cascades allow the treble to decay at the exact moment when vocals start to sound raspy, hitting the acoustic “sweet spot”.


It is safe to say that Campfire Audio has opted for a V-shaped response on these bass-cannons. The mid-range remains clear, with enough presence for it to remain coherent. However, there is still a noticeable dip in the upper mids, with vocals placed further back in the entire mix. The PHAT bass complements the mid-range by backing it with weight and heft, creating an almost “tube-esque, vinyl-like” warmth that hearkens back to an analogue age.


Highs are well extended, rolling off at the opportune moment so as to avoid ear-piercing sibilance. Considering the gargantuan bass response of the Cascades, its highs are surprisingly distinct, unfazed and undeterred by its explosive bottom-end.


The piston-like bass response overwhelms the sound-stage, stealing its thunder. Expect an intimate presentation when compared to its open-back counterparts in the market (Hifiman HE-560, HD800). I would describe the stage as a circular sphere, your head as the metaphorical center.

On the other hand, imaging is razor-sharp, allowing you to unconsciously pinpoint the placement of instruments and vocals with ease. This an impressive feat for a closed-back headphone. There are some occasions where the bass proves to be too thunderous, drowning out everything else in the process.

For their first headphone release, Campfire Audio has undoubtedly, created an unorthodox creature in a crowded sea of high-end, reference headphones. In a market where developers strictly adhere to the Harman Target Response Curve like dogmatic scripture, it is refreshing to witness a company carve its own path.

Like the Audioquest Nighthawk, this headphone is bound to polarize listeners with its velvety tonality. Nevertheless, I believe they will develop their own cult following as time goes by.

If you’re looking for a reference headphone with clinical precision, look elsewhere. If you’re up for an unashamedly fun listen, this is the headphone for you.
Well written



1000+ Head-Fier

Small question: any Campfire Audio IEMs with a similar sound signature to the Cascade's you could recommend?

Thanks in advance & Take care


New Head-Fier

Small question: any Campfire Audio IEMs with a similar sound signature to the Cascade's you could recommend?

Thanks in advance & Take care
Atlas with its huge 10mm driver. With much more details in highs, though.
Cascade has one big flow: the bass is so huge and overwhelming, it covers everything else. And even if I (as a typical bass-head) find it very pleasing, once you try headphones like Final Audio D8000 Pro, you won't return to Cascade. The latter is very warm and nice but hides so many details that once reveiled will prevent you from using them on a regular basis.