Pros: Overall well tuned sound, brilliant timbre, amazing fit, good packaging.
Cons: Cable, price.
Earsonics is a boutique audio equipment company located in Castries, France. They specialize in custom in-ears and hearing protection equipments. Earsonics is a well known company around the world and they are in business for a long time.
Now, we’re here to look at their latest offering. ES-5.
Accessories & Box Earsonics recently updated their packaging and accessories. They now come with much better, slide-to-open box. I experienced the change in years first hand and Earsonics finally evolved the unboxing experience to “premium” level. Kudos!
Accessories however, are quite modest, minimal. You only get what you need.
4 Comply Tips
4 Silicon Tips
1 Cleaning Tool
Fit, Design & Build ES-5 features glossy, semi-transparent dark caramel housing with yellow dots on faceplates. I should also mention that the IEMs are hand-assembled & hand-matched. Fit is amazing. It’s like I am not wearing them at all. Even after 5 hours.
Tips & Cable Improvements Tip rolling is real and it’s important. Aside from getting a good seal, there is the acoustic side of things. I have tried many tips including Spinfits, RHA, Ortofons, Comply etc.. I personally like Ortofons but they cripple bass response by a small margin. Earsonics double flanges are better sub bass-wise. As for cables, please, ES-5 deserves a better cable. Upgrade as soon as possible. The impact is ASTRONOMICAL. My recommendation would be a -not so lush- copper cable such as the PW.5. Infinity Audio’s Litz Copper is also a great option. Linum SuperBax is great with ES-5, as well.
Sound Signature I’ve used SM3, SM64, S-EM6&v2, S-EM9, Velvet, ES-2, ES-3... So yes I am quite familiar with the earsonics house sound. ES-5, just like ES-3, is following the steps of S-EM9. Pairing ES-5 with Chord Hugo results in a very balanced presentation. Like every Earsonics IEM, ES-5 comes with a powerful bass response. Because of this, some may tag this as a warmer earphone compared to something like Katana. I am also hearing a dip around upper mids. Enough to keep cymbals in check but not to cripple the overall clarity so again, just like S-EM9, Earsonics managed to bless us with polite but detailed & rich presentation.
Lows Airy & dynamic. ES-5 has this brilliant bass-response where the bass scales itself perfectly with recordings. It is fast and fluid with Metal. It is deep and impactful with EDM. Control is great. It does not overwhelm other frequencies. Quality-wise Earsonics once again impresses and gets an A. I can’t help but enjoy the fullness of the bass while listening to the “Stolen Dance” from Milky Chance. ES-5’s presentation reminds me of S-EM9’s. Resolution is really good and can be improved further with upgrade cables. Mid bass have an average thickness to it, it’s not too thick or too thin.
Mids Midrange is rich & articulate. Control is excellent. Fundamentally mid-based instruments (i.e. flute, oboe, guitar etc.) feel organic and breathy. Midbass is flat. Upper mids have the classic Earsonics dip. This results in a smooth and delicate presentation. Cymbals & snares are not irritating in any way therefore not tiring even after long listening sessions. I’ll explain this more in the treble section.
Highs ES-5 has an impressive treble response. Highs have this special spatial feeling to them. Extension is brilliant and clarity is really impressive.
What Earsonics did is quite smart, detailed treble works as a catalyst for polite upper mids and evens out the negative effects of the dip. Transparent treble contributes to layering and imaging as well.
Soundstage & Imaging | Instrument Separation | Dynamics & Speed ES-5 handles congestion really well thanks to its spacious instrument separation. Headroom is breathy, layering is sharp. PRaT is fantastic, I had quite a blast listening to Blind Guardian & Dragonforce. Imaging is accurate and precise. Dynamism is something that Earsonics nails every time. That’s why they’re my go-to IEMs with my 850 GB Metal archive.
Quick Comparisons vs. Sony N3AP ES-5’s midrange and treble are a lot better than N3AP’s. In terms of resolution, clarity. N3AP’s bass impact and rumble is better.
vs. Earsonics S-EM6v2 SM6v2 is flatter. ES-5’s bass impact is greater. Resolution-wise they’re similar. They have different target markets. S-EM6v2 is almost reference whereas ES-5 is more in the “fun” side of things because of the bass.
vs. Oriolus + PW.5
ES-5’s treble is more refined. ES-5 is dynamically superior. Both monitors’ mids are meaty and their timbre is natural. Oriolus sounds more relaxed. Oriolus’ instrument separation is tad better and its soundstage is wider.
vs. Earsonics ES-3
ES-3’s midbass is tad lighter than ES-5’s. ES-5 has tad stronger bass response and thicker timbre. ES-5’s resolution is also greater.
vs. Earsonics S-EM9
S-EM9 is dynamically superior, it is faster and it feels even more accurate. Treble is similar. 9’s bass rumble is greater. Sub bass is tighter. S-EM9 handles congestion better as well.
ES-5 is a capable monitor. It is fast & accurate. The fit is great, unboxing experience is premium, handles congestion like a boss, has a great midrange that will be serving me in my late night acoustic sessions.