Campfire Audio Comet

General Information


From Campfire Audio:


Really Good Stuff.

The Comet simply sounds good. Really good. It has a nicely balanced low-mid fullness with the high frequency extension magic from our 3D modeled Tuned Acoustic Expansion Chamber sprinkled on top.

The weight of new stainless steel body feels great in the hand and the low profile design keeps it comfortable in your ear. An excellent seal lets you block out the world and escape into your music.

Comet is designed and assembled in our Portland, Oregon workshop.

Stainless Steel Body
Our new stainless steel earphone bodies are drop forged and then CNC machined before being hand polished to a mirror finish. The durability of stainless steel provides peace of mind in daily use.

Each earphone is assembled by hand in our workshop by our team of highly skilled craftspeople.



Custom Vented BA = Woah! Nice :)
Comet utilizes a custom design vented full range balanced armature. It delivers a sound that can deliver crisp snare drums as well as the thump of the kick.

Adding the vent gives us that punch. Adding our T.A.E.C. takes off the ceiling and lets the highs breathe at the top end of the sound.

New 3-Button Control Cable + Mic
Taking the tangle-resistant cable design from Polaris, we’ve added a new 3-Button control + mic system for mobile use. This cable sounds good and has a new level of functionality for the critical listener on the go.





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Latest reviews

Pros: Phenomenal build quality, branding, bass, and upper mids/highs
Cons: If your fingers are fat, you might have trouble fitting it, and male vocals in particular lack crisp forward edges

Note: this review is verbatim from the ohm image article I published Friday on the Campfire Audio Comet. If you'd like to see more photos, please visit the original. Otherwise, here it is. Also note: ohmage is good, porridge is bad.

Original: ohmage to the Campfire Audio Comet

Disclaimer: I received Comet directly from Campfire Audio in Tokyo. I paid nothing for it nor have I been prompted to return it. It goes for 199$.
Hit up Campfire Audio for more about it.

No earphone as Comet small shines as Comet much. No earphone as Comet small is as Comet tough. Comet nails build, nails branding, nails budget, and nearly nails fit. It’s a 199$ USD earphone, that, after doing the maths (Atari Jaguar style), feels and works like something much, much more expensive.

Spec:

20Hz–20kHz Frequency Response
97 dB SPL/mW Sensitivity
48 Ohms @ 1kHz Impedance
Single Full Range Balanced Armature Driver (Custom vented)
Beryllium / Copper MMCX Connections
Stainless Steel Body

haptics and build: ohmage

Among Comet’s many design coups are its use of L/R-independent channels. Snap whichever side you like atop the appropriate mini MMCX plug and you’re gold. The cables bear colour-coded L/R labels in case you really want panning stereo to work properly, and if you’ve just spent 199$ on an earphone, I reckon you do. (In case you’re in the dark, or can’t be bothered to look, the inline mic and remote unit hangs off the right cable.)

Comet is universally swappable, blind-operable, and nearly slides right in. I say nearly because if your fingers are meaty, you will find little purchase anywhere for levering them into your canals.

Comet also looks like a hairdryer. (I’m sure that was on purpose.)

Below the remote, the cable is thick Litz stuff. Pulled hard it stretches, but only barely, and is strong enough to support a good dining chair, though perhaps not overnight. Finally, it terminates in a 4-pole, case-friendly slimline L-shaped plug.

Comet is about as sturdy an earphone as you’ll put in your ear. Fire it from shotgun. Grind it under SUV tyres, and maybe even tank tracks. It’s forged steel. Breaking it requires a forge.

Fit: ohmage and porridge

I dare you to find a slimmer remote. I dare you to find one primed by discrete controls iOS with controls for play/pause and volume. I mean, check it: about as thick as an over-sturdy y-split. It bears stress relief on neither its front nor rear, but works well, and despite good functionality and controls, only barely weighs down the cable.

Its neck cinch hard stops to the right of your heart, right below the remote control. This position makes it next to difficult to use when wearing Comet over the ear. Despite this, I think it’s good that the cinch isn’t above the remote.

Because Comet is so compact, meaty fingered folk may find pulling it out again tough. I imagine that Comet will weather the coming war.

kitsch: ohmage

Branding marques mill into the earphone bodies, are stamped onto the zipper pulls, case, and pin. As typical of Campfire, the case is overkill. Pack in a bunch of high-end earphones and sit on them. The fuzz-lined case will keep them safe. And it will outlast any other case. It’s perfectly engineered for everything except stuffing into pockets. Overkill but the best thing out there. From literature to box stylistic flourishes match perfectly, and each is wholesome. Comet’s accessory package fits next to grandma’s Mason jars as well as your tool bench. It’s well made, beautifully tooled, and doesn’t leave you guessing about the brand.

No kitsch here.

Sound: ohmage

Despite its 97dB/48Ω spec, in practice Comet is nearly as sensitive as a Grado GR8e (itself one step removed from the Shure SE846). This means that it will pick up hiss from a large variety of players, DACs, and amps. This is particular trouble for louts like me who are getting back into Minidisk portables, the bulk of which hiss like the Dickens. The good news is that most well-designed DAPs have low enough noise floors to be absolutely silent through Comet. The few that aren’t really don’t deserve to be called audiophile, let alone targeted toward portable earphones.

Comet reveals enough hiss from my personal favourite Minidisk portable, the Sony MZ-E55, to be annoying at low volumes. The real problem is that the MZ-E55’s baked-in digital bass enhancement mates brilliantly with Comet, making me want to pair the two all the time. Enjoying the MZ-E55's amazing bass means weathering its hiss.

Despite being relatively sensitive, Comet requires an volume extra step or two above a GR8e or JVC’s HA-FD 01, which is a god-send for analogue attenuators with mild low-power volume cant.

Bass vs. Mids: ohmage

Comet doesn’t power-yawn the intro seconds of Markus Schulz’s Mainstage, but it gets as close as I’ve heard from a neutral-leaning single armature earphone. In fact, I often wonder that Comet is powered by a single BA driver. Bass monster single BA earphones exist. Most decant mad lows to the detriment of everything else. Comet keeps mid to mid-high pressure in the lowest of lows whilst dekeing bloom. In short, Comet outputs good power that can pack a wallop, especially in bass-driven music like trance. It also responds well - though not excellently - to heavy EQs, Digital MegaBass, and the like. Paired with the MZ-E55, it handles Digital MegaBass at a setting of 2/3 without bloom, but at 3/3 it blooms, though mildly. In contrast, the Audio Technica CK10 is bloom-free all the way up to 3/3.

Comet’s low range is speedy. It shows good stereo spread. The spread hits the shoulders with minor z-axis gradients and a medium-high y-axis lift. While z-axis detail is limited, x-axis detail and spread defines smooth gradients that soften the wall-of-sound image typical to many single-BA earphones. Consequently, low-frequency instrument separation is good, but generally centrally anchors in a wide band that ping-pongs from one ear to the other, escaping outward when necessary, but largely staying put. Next to a good dynamic driver earphone like the MDR-EX1000, Comet reveals less low-frequency texture, but better delineates channels than the Sony.

It’s lows and lower, pre-vocal mids are nice and bitey.

Bass vs. Highs: ohmage & porridge

In my opinion, its weak spot is vocals, male in particular. It’s not that they are recessed, it’s that their top edges dull in comparison to their lead-in bottoms. At times, Comet puts Nick Cave, Christopher Martin, and sometimes, even The Boss, behind one too many filters. That quibble aside, Comet nails my personal preferences. They are: medium to high energy mids and upper mids, and non-spiky treble. Comet extends far with good sound pressure, and none of it peaky. Female vocals are clear, and free of ring. Cymbals, high hats, and other shimmery, shouty, instruments attack and decay quick with next to no wet reverb.

Nailed it.

Balance: ohmage

For a single-driver BA, Comet sounds full, from bass to mids, errs slightly warm, and reaches well into the upper mids and highs with good, but not annoying sparkle. Personally, I'd like more vocal bite. But I can see where Comet, as is, is right on for the lad or ladess who doesn't faff around with The Boss, Nick Cave, and other fading stars of ballad and blue collar pathos.

Vs. Audio Technica CK10

Next to to a CK10, upper vocal edges are dull. This is particularly the case with male vocals, against which percussion derives more energy and edge. But the upper mids and highs, where the CK10's sibilance and ring really annoy, Comet is spot on, clean, and clear. The CK10 also sounds more layered, giving more space to vocals. An amalgamation of Comet and CK10 would probably be perfect.

Vs. JVC HA-FD 01

The HA-FD 01 is hard to nail down, but in sum, it’s a flatter, less layered, less ringy version of the CK10. It’s also super customisable. In casts a wide sound stage, is more energetic up top than Comet, and its bass, while more textured, and stereo wide, is less impactful and controlled. I love its highs and vocals, but wish it had Comet’s bass sound pressure and control.

Vs. Sony MDR-EX1000

The MDR-EX1000 and Comet share something in the upper mids, but the Sony’s crazy wide stereo spread thins it out in comparison. I’ll be honest here, the Sony has, in short order, become a favourite. It has no weaknesses. But it’s not got the tight, controlled feel of Comet.

End words

Soft-edged male vocals side, I have no complaints with Comet. Its solid, impactful bass really moves things, and its controlled upper mids and highs round out one of the most tightly engineered sounds I’ve heard in a long time. It’s also really well made and generally easy to use. And, because it’s from Campfire, its branding isn’t just unique, it is practically collectible. Brands and products that speak for themselves are a treat, and way too few. Way to go.

ohmage: 7
porridge: 2
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Pros: Good overall sound performance,
Solid build quality,
Nice accessories package,
Comfortable
Cons: Metal surface is prone to scratches,
Missing of some micro detail
Campfire Audio Comet Review


About Campfire Audio:

Campfire Audio is a US based company located in Portland – Oregon, which is specialized in the production of In-Ear Monitors.

Campfire Audio launched there first In-Ear Monitors in summer of 2015 with three models, which are the Jupiter, Orion and Lyra.

After the success of these models, Campfire Audio introduced the Nova and Andromeda in spring of 2016 that are milestones for the company in the audiophile market. The Lyra II, Dorado, and Vega (fall of 2016) are the there first IEM’s with a liquid alloy metal housing and the Polaris (August 2018) was the latest model right before the new Comet and Atlas came out in April 2018.




This review was originally posted on my Review Blog, which I want now to share with the Head-Fi community:

Original Post: http://moonstarreviews.net/campfire-audio-comet-review/


Disclaimer:

The Comet IEM was provided to me by Campfire Audio as a review sample. I am not affiliated with Campfire Audio or any third person beyond this review and all these words reflect my true, unaltered, opinions about the product.



The Price:

The Comet is sold for 199,00 USD and is available on Campfire Audio’s Official Store under the following link;

Purchase link: https://campfireaudio.com/shop/comet/


Warranty:

Campfire Audio Comet includes a 1 year limited liability product warranty covering defects due to manufacturing and assembly.


Package and Accessories:

The Campfire Audio (in short CA) Comet came in a relative small orange cardboard box with turquoise patterns and a sticker laid over it, which is providing an image of the Comet.







Inside of this box are following items;

  • 1 pair x Campfire Audio Comet Monitor
  • 1 pcs x Copper Litz Cable with MMCX with Mic (has 3 button controls)
  • 1 set x Campfire Audio Marshmallow tips (small, medium, large)
  • 1 set x Silicon Ear Tips (small, medium, large)
  • 1 set x Spinfit Silicone Ear Tips (small, medium, large)
  • 1 pair x Protective fabric pouch
  • 1 pcs x Clearing Tool
  • 1 pcs x Campfire Audio Pin
  • 1 pcs x Black zipper case with faux shear ling lining
  • 1 pcs x Warrant Card & instruction manual


The Campfire Audio Comet comes with lots of accessories. The standard package is including foam ear tips (Campfire Audio calls it Marshmallow), silicone ear tips with large bore and very comfy Spinfit silicone ear tips. All ear tips are coming in three (3) different sizes; small, medium and large.






The In-Ear monitors came in fabric pouches (each monitor has its own pouch) that protects from any scratching.



Black zipper case has leather like surface with a faux shear ling lining and sports the Campfire Audio logo on the top that looks pretty stylish.



There is also a cleaning tool and a pin with Campfire Audio Logo, which is a nice addition.





The Cooper Litz Cable:

The Campfire Audio Comet comes with a 4 core braided Copper Litz (ALO Audio) wire cable that has a medical grade black PVC coating.



This cable has beryllium copper MMCX (Micro Miniature Coaxial) male connectors, a right angled 3.5mm TRS (single ended) headphone jack and an inline 3-button control with microphone.



On those connectors are left (blue dot) and right (red dot) markings that are easy to recognize.



The cable sports a black chin slider “made of metal” and a y splitter that is made of plastic.



The 3.5mm Gold plated TRS headphone jack is L angled and has a high quality rubber housing, which sports the Campfire Audio logo.





Design and Build Quality:

The Campfire Audio Comet is made of CNC machined stainless steel that has a very different design language then the former models, which reminds me and some people in the community to a Hair Dryer or Sci-Fi pistol.



The all stainless steel housing has a polished glossy that looks and feels rock solid in my hand.



On the front is the sound nozzle with e machined grill spout, which has a unique appearance.



You can find on both sides of the housing, there Campfire Audio logo. At the bottom of the In-Ear Monitor is the Beryllium Copper MMCX connector that looks very solid and has a robust mating mechanism.



Fit, Comfort and Isolation:

The Campfire Audio Comet has stainless steel housing, which is surprisingly comfortable to wear, but you should note that the nozzle is a bit on the bigger diameter, which could make some pressure to ears with small ear channel. I was able to wear the Comet for around 2 – 3 hours with breaks for every 30 min, without any discomfort. The noise isolation is above average, but not as good like IEM’s with semi custom acrylic/resin shell, but is ok for environments like bus, metro or train.





Features:

The Comet utilizes a custom design vented full range balanced armature driver and features an Acoustic Chamber called T.A.E.C (Tuned Acoustic Expansion Chamber).

The custom Beryllium Copper MMCX eliminates the traditional shortcomings of the connection and harnesses all of its benefits. Beryllium Copper provides a robust mating mechanism; one that is typically made from soft brass. The selection of this harder material should extend the life of the component and the earphone.





Technical Specifications:

  • Driver Units : 1 (single) x Full Range Balanced Armature Driver
  • Special Features : Tuned Acoustic Expansion Chamber™ (T.A.E.C.)
  • SPL : 97 dB @ 1K
  • THD : <1%
  • Impedance : 48 ohm @ 1K
  • Frequency Response : 20Hz – 20kHz
  • Earphone connector : Beryllium Copper MMMC (Micro Miniature Coaxial Connector)


Drivability (Impedance):

The impedance of the Campfire Audio Comet is 48 ohm @ 1K, which explains why it needs a bit more juice then regular IEM’s. The Comet can be used with portable sources like Smartphones, Tablet’s without the need of an external Amplifier, but shows its real potential when I use it with my DAP’s and DAC/AMP’s.





Sources:

a) In Ear Monitor : Campfire Audio Comet, Lear Luf Kaleido, Brainwavz B400

b) DAP/DAC : Cayin N5II, Chord Mojo, Hidizs DH1000, Audirect Beam, Fiio M7





c) Albums & Tracks used for this review:

  • Jehan Barbur – Yollar (Spotify)
  • Minor Empire – Bulbulum Altin Kafeste (Spotify)
  • London Grammar – Interlud (Live) (Flac 24bit/44kHz)
  • Laura Pergolizzi – Lost On You “Live at Harvard and Stone” (Tidal Hi-Fi)
  • Steve Srauss – Mr. Bones (Flac 16bit/44kHz)
  • Dire Straits – Money for Nothing (DSD 64)
  • Gothart – Jovano, Jovanke (Spotify)
  • Otto Liebert & Luna Negra – The River (DSF) – Binaural Recording
  • GoGo Penguin – Fanfares (Tidal Hi-Fi)
  • Adam Taylor – Colour to the Moon (Flac 16bit/44kHz)
  • Casey Abrams – Robot Lover (Tidal Hi-Fi)
  • Morbid Angel – Drum Check (Spotify)
  • Charly Antolini’s – Duwadjuwandadu (Tidal Hi-Fi)
  • Liquid Tension Experiment 2 – Acid Rain (Spotify)
  • Opeth – Damnation (Tidal Hi-Fi)
  • Megadeth – Sweating Bullets (Flac 16bit/44kHz)
  • Metallica – Sad bu True (Flac 24bit/96kHz)
  • Future Heroes – Another World (Tidal Hi-fi)
  • Lorde – Team (Flac 24bit/48kHz)
  • Tom Player – Resonace Theory “Album” (Tidal Hi-Fi)
  • Deeperise feat. Jabbar – Move On (Spotify)




Sound Analysis and Comparisons:

I believe in burn-in and have done that for approx 80 hours, before I have written this review. I have used the medium sized stock silicone ear tips, which came in the box together with the Campfire Audio Comet.





Tonality:

The Campfire Audio Comet does not sounding analytical or hot and is slightly on the warmer side of neutral, which I can descript musical.


Bass:

The Campfire Audio Comet is an IEM with a custom design vented full range single balanced armature driver, which looks on paper as a disadvantage in the bass department. But Campfire Audio managed to archive a fairly good bass performance, which should be a result of the custom vented design.

The sub-bass area goes fairly low and has surprisingly good extension. The bass has pretty fast attack and good decay, especially for a single BA driver. The mid-bass area is not as present like the rest of the bass spectrum, but has some nice kicks when it’s called for.

The bass has moderate amount of pressure, which is enough for listening to genres like Pop, Edm or Trance, unless you’re descript your self as a bass-head. For example; I can hear some nice kicks when I listen to Deeperise feat. Jabbar – Move On, which I quite enjoy with the Comet.





c) Mids:

The midrange of the Campfire Audio Comet sounds smooth and has velvet like presentation, with a moderate level of transparency. Both male and female vocals have a nice sense of body thanks to the relative full sounding lower end, while female voices have additional sparkle due a slightly boost in the upper midrange area.

The Comet has a quite good detail retrieval, which I didn’t expect from a Campfire Audio product with such a price label. It is not a detail monster, but shares some nice micro detail in GoGo Penguin’s – Fanfares, where you can find lots of instruments, which are playing at the background. The separation of instruments is above average and the upper midrange has a slightly boost, which sounds fairly controlled without any remarkable harshness or sibilance.

As I motioned before, the upper midrange has a slightly boost that sounds fairly controlled without any remarkable harshness or sibilance. This tuning allows the Campfire Audio Comet to provide a richer display of vocals and instruments.





d) Treble:

The Campfire Audio Comet has a slightly boost in the treble range, which makes the overall presentation a touch brighter than natural. The treble extension in this area is in a moderate level with a relative clear and airy presentation without remarkable flaws.

The Campfire Audio Comet is quite capable regarding to speed and control in the treble/ upper treble region but is missing a bit o resolution, which can be found in IEM’s at the same price range.

One of the good characteristics of the treble presentation is that the Comet doesn’t sounds aggressive or harsh in this area. Instruments like cymbals and bells are sounding pretty controlled and pleasant in Charly Antolini’s song “Duwadjuwandadu”, even in higher volume levels.



e) Soundstage:

The Campfire Audio Comet has a soundstage with a fairly natural presentation, which offers more wideness than depth. There is enough space and air rendered between vocals and instruments and the positioning of instruments is pretty precise.



Comparisons:





Vs. LEAR LUF Kaleido:

The Lear Luf Kaleido is a Hybrid driver IEM with 2 Balanced Armature drivers and 1 dynamic driver, which I will compare with Campfire Audio Comet with 1 full-range BA diver.

The first noticeable difference between the Luf Kaleido and the Comet is in the bass department. The Luf Kaleido has noticeable more emphasis in both sub- and mid-bass department.

The sub-bass of the Luf Kaleido goes lower and has also more rumble than those of the Comet, but the is missing a bit more extension. The midbass of the LUF Kaleido has more quantity and sounds also punchier than those of the Comet, while the Campfire IEM has the upper hand for speed, control and bass decay. The bass of the Comet has also better texture and sounds also cleaner than those of the Kaleido.

The Lear Luf Kaleido sounds warmer and fuller in the midrange department, where it is missing some transparency and clarity, which the Comet has.

Both male and female vocals sounding fuller, more intimate and emotional with the Kaleido, where the Campfire Audio Comet offers more clearness and sparkle especially due the slightly rolled of upper midrange of the Kaleido, where the Comet really shines. The Comet has here also the better definition of instruments, while string instruments like guitar sounding more delicious with the Kaleido. The Lear Luf Kaleido sounds a bit too hot and veiled in the midrange compared to the Comet, which makes the sound a bit unnatural.



The treble range of the Campfire Audio Comet sounds airier and with more sparkle than those of the LEAR Luf Kaleido, which is also missing some resolution. The speed and control of both IEM’s is equal but the Comet has the upper hand for extension. The upper treble range of Comet sounds slightly dull, which makes instruments like cymbals, pianos and violins sounding a bit too hot and unnatural.

When it comes to the soundstage performance, the Campfire Audio Comet has the upper hand for wideness, while performance for depth is nearly the identical (maybe a tad deeper with the Comet). The Comet is a bit more accurate in the subject of instrument placement.



Vs. BRAINWAVZ B400:

The Brainwavz B400 is a multi BA (Balanced Armature) driver IEM with 4 drivers, which I will compare with the Campfire Audio Comet with 1 full-range BA diver.

The Brainwavz B400 sounds fuller and warmer than the Comet. The B400 has more slightly more sub-bass rumble that goes to a slightly lower register than those of the Comet. The B400 has also the upper hand for extension and control in the bass department, while the speed is nearly identical. The mid-bass of the B400 is more prominent and gives additional punch when it called for.

The midrange of the Brainwavz B400 is warmer and darker than the Comet, which sounds airier and more spacious in this area. I am enjoying both IEM’s while listening to vocals, but I must say that I like the B400 more with male voices, while the Comet is the better choice for female vocal with is slightly brighter top end.

The B400 has the upper hand for the separation of instruments and detail retrieval in the midrange region.

Now the game is changing when it comes to the treble performance. The Comet sounds brighter, extends better and has additional micro detail in this frequency region, which was a surprise for me due the single BA driver.

The Comet sounds also more alive compared to the B400, due the brighter top end, which shares also a nice rendering of air. The Brainwavz B400’s treble area sound a bit rolled off but has slightly better control, while playing instruments like Piano, Violin, etc., which are sounding also pretty controlled on the Comet too.

The soundstage performance of both IEM’s is pretty good compared to the price. The Campfire Audio Comet has a wider stage, while the Brainwavz B400 performs better for soundstage depth. The Brainwavz B400 is a bit more accurate regarding to the placement of instrument.





Conclusion:

The Campfire Audio Comet is a solid piece of gear with its Stainless Steel Housing, different design language and premium build quality. I was a bit skeptical at the very beginning due Comet’s price and the single driver and didn’t expect such a sound performance, but it was nice to see and to hear that Campfire Audio has a product for a much more reasonable price.



Pros and Cons:

  • + Good overall sound performance
  • + Solid build quality
  • + Nice accessories package
  • + Comfortable
  • – Metal surface is prone to scratches
  • – Missing of some micro detail


Pros: Beautiful build quality
-Suitable sound signature for both general/serious listeners
-Great usability with smartphones
Cons: Fitting may be a bit deep for some
DSC_0454_edited.png


Intro: Advanced to another level

Campfire Audio is a leading audio brand that started small but quickly grew its reputation making hits after hits. Back then, I remember Orion and Jupiter gaining lots of attention since they came out and I eventually got the Orion. Although I have a pretty omnivorous taste when it comes to sound signatures, I rarely falls in love with 1BA in-ears. Orion was one of the few 1BA in-ears that I've been enjoying and it's still in my possession, serving me well as one of the old gears that I have.

CA is one of my favorite audio brands and I decided to purchase Andromeda and Vega. Though ironically right after I got them in my hands, that new ad popped up on my Instagram feed - "Introducing Atlas and Comet." The first thought in my mind was "damn" - since I could of waited a bit more before purchasing the Vega. (Vega actually serves me well, so I'm happy about it.) But that wasn't the main issue, as the next that came up in my mind was about the curiosity on Comet since it had the same driver configuration as my beloved Orion, and I had to figure it out. Comet has a price tag of $199, currently being the most affordable product from their lineup.







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Ordinary CA Packaging - simple yet pretty


Comet comes with the ordinary CA style packaging - simple yet pretty. The packaging has a vibrant orange theme and it's included with generous amount of accessories - a black leather case, 3 pairs of silicon tips, 3 pairs of foam tips, 4 pairs of Spinfit tips, a cleaning tool, cable ties, velvet pouches, a shirt pin, and some paper works. Basically all CA products comes with the same set of accessories but come on, I should admit that this makes the Comet even better since its way cheaper than other models.







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Fresh looking earpieces

Campfire came up with the new earpiece design which is completely different than the former ones. I must talk about the wearing style of the Comet, as CA finally came up with a straight-down style earpiece which must be good news to lots of folks. I actually prefer over-ear style over that but it wasn't an issue as it was just as comfortable as wearing them straight-down. The housings are made out of polished stainless steel, giving a shiny and mirror-like appearance. The earpieces are detachable from the cable, being equipped with MMCX connectors.







DSC_0304_edited3_edited.png


By the way..


As I stated in the beginning, Comet is equipped with single dynamic drivers with CA's well-known T.A.E.C technology. Nothing is particularly surprising until I've noticed that these BA drivers were vented like, which is rather uncommon. Final Audio FI-BA-SS is also equipped with vented 1BA drivers and was impressed with its sound before, so that is the main reason why I bought the Comet. The custom vented 1BA drivers definitely shows sonic differences from Orion or other 1BA IEMs, but let's talk about that on the lower section where I talk about its sound.







DSC_0672_edited.png


Cable with better usability

Comet's default cable is ALO Audio's copper litz cable (MSRP $149) but with a 3-button mic integrated to it, giving a much better usability for users who listen music out of their phones. The copper litz cable is one of the newest cable and I could say that it's quite nice, in terms of quality and smoothness of the wires. The cable is terminated with a L-shaped 3.5mm jack, and while it's a 4 pole jack (due to the mic) I didn't face any issues while pairing up with my DAPs. Besides, there's an additional "step" on the 3.5mm jack that allows smartphone users to stick it in with their phone cases on, so another good news for smartphone users and thumbs up for that, CA.







DSC_0446_edited.png
So how's the sound?


Ok, it's very typical to expect a flat, linear sound signature from 1BA iems. Well, Comet appears to be seeking a different path here. The bass is pretty plentiful for a 1BA, but what I'm more impressed about is its ability to express good thickness and density from the bottom - for a 1BA of course. The resonance is well controlled, so I didn't found the bass to be too splattery or messy. Overall, the bass presence is pretty clear with proper amount of resonance, so the bass amount should be plentiful enough for most users - unless you're a basshead.


Mids are slightly placed forward than the bass, having a natural transition from the bass. The thickness is actually quite adequate, showing good matching with both male and female vocals; pretty interesting as I found most 1BA iems to perform better on female vocals due to their thin sound on the mids. The brightness is right on the point, being neither bright or dark. Another point that I'd like to highlight is that Campfire managed to tame the mids from sounding metallic, giving an organic taste and color. However it still possesses a bit of shininess on the timbre which helps vocals to sound richer. Mids sound very stable throughout the frequency and doesn't occur any sibilance.


The treble amount on the highs are relatively laid-back though keeps its appearance clearly. The texture feels crispy yet not dry - or maybe I should say that it feels more moist than general 1BA IEMs, which is a good thing. Overall, the treble tends to smoothly flow away but with good response speed and density. Though it tends from making hard strikes in the head, so there isn't much cool or refreshing feeling on the highs. But again, the shiny texture that comes from the mids keeps the overall sound signature from getting too dark. It gives me an impression that the treble here serves more as a seasoning to the overall harmony. I believe the treble amount should be adequate for general users.







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Compared to Orion?

Comet is surely different than most 1BA IEMs, due to the vented BA driver. It shatters the bias around 1BA IEMs; which are usually considered to be flat, dry, and small staging/imaging. The staging feels adequately wide and surely better than most 1BA IEMs that I've tried before. It also does a pretty good job making the overall sound spatial, so it doesn't particularly feel flat when it comes to imaging. Can't say it's superb, since it's still a single BA, but it's surely up to standards and also competeable with general 2-3BA IEMs or 1DD IEMs.

Comet sounds more bassy and the textures are more moist and polished - giving me an impression of a very dense single DD rather than a 1BA. Quite different. Vocals sound slightly thicker compared to Orion but hey, it's still a single BA. It's actually just about the right thickness that would work well with both male and female vocals. Taking a look at the Orion, female vocals sounds more airy and sweeter here. Orion tends to lightly express the sound throughout the frequency, so some will find Orion to be sounding more neat and clean.

There are multiple aspects where Comet outdoes Orion, but I'd say it's pretty much more about personal preference. The gap between Orion and Comet is quite narrow, so I'll actually put them on the same league in terms of overall performance. It's very impressive if you consider the fact that the price tag on Comet is nearly $150 lower than Orion's. Those who tried Orion and prefers such sound may prefer Orion, but I can say that Comet has a sound signature that would fit general users very nicely, even if you're not a serious audiophile. Shortly, Orion tends to be more analytical while Comet goes for musicality.













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Verdicts

I still love my Orion, but I could definitely see that Comet is presented on a very competitive price. While I wasn't expecting much from Comet before, I'm now surprised how much Campfire was able to advanced with single Balanced Armatures. The overall frequencies are tightly controlled while carefully allowing adequate amount of resonance, resulting into a sound that almost anybody could enjoy. Besides, it's capable of two different wearing style and featuring a remote, so I'd consider Comet to be satisfactory for both serious and general listeners. Let's not look down to Comet for being the cheapest model from the line up, because I won't complain even if it had a higher price tag. That should explain how much I'm satisfied with the Comet. If anyone's looking for an entry level IEM to start with, I'd say Comet will be a good place to start with.



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Campfire Audio Comet was purchased by myself.
I am not affiliated to Campfire Audio.
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dsrk
dsrk
Hi, very good review. What are those blue tips?
Watermelon Boi
Watermelon Boi
@dsrk Thanks! These are Acoustune AET08 eartips.
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Comments

who wide are the bores? I take it they didnt hurt? Not sure if you've tried the LZ A4's and then hurt my ears. I would like to try the comets, but don't want to make the same mistake again. Thank you.
 
Thanks for your perspective on the Comets. I have been a fan of ALO cables and their spin off, Campfire Audio looked interesting to me. Currently I have a pair of NuForce Primo 8"s, RHA 10Ti's and 2 pairs of Kinera BD005's. Very excited to receive my Comets today (impatiently waiting for FedEx to bring them). Wish I could afford to purchase the Vegas, Andromedas or the Atlas IEM's. I believe Campfire and ALO will continue to do GREAT things for the audio community.
 
Looks great and little bit different from what they have made so far. Thank you for your sharing
 
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