Elysian Acoustic Labs Pilgrim


Elysian Acoustic Labs Pilgrim – A strong contender for the Mid-Fi King crown
Pros: - Superb technicalities
- Ample detail retrieval
- Sub bass presence, bass texture is class leading for the price
- Metal shell with industrial design and comfortable fit
- Price
- Responds very well to tip rolling – suggested Divinus Velvet and Penon Lacquer
Cons: - Would have loved better cable
- Supplied CP100 tips doesn’t do justice to this iem, tip rolling required
- Carry case is of mediocre quality
- High notes on female vocals can be a delight or issue based on your source pairing, especially ch sounds
Elysian Acoustic Labs is a Malaysian high-end custom in-ear monitor (IEM) company that has garnered attention for its impressive offerings. We often associate Elysian Acoustic Labs with high end iems such as annihilator, X, Diva etc. The path to excellence started off in 2015 with anger at the inadequacies of the IEM options of the era. Out on a quest to reinvent what sound means to him, Mechanical Engineer Lee Quan Min took it upon himself to refurbish an old Ultimate Ears TripleFi10. Upon gaining public interest from local hobbyists, Lee started providing reshell services and thus accumulation experience along the way. It is nice to see EA Labs launching a relatively mid-fi iem which can give the taste of tonality from their esteemed firm’s high-end offerings.


This review reflects my personal and subjective listening experience with the mentioned audio gear product. I would like to thank Hifigo for the tour unit and @gadgetgod for organizing this review tour in my country and allowing me to share my thoughts on the product, it doesn’t influence my review in any form and nor I am compensated.

Before I start, I would like to mention that most of my impressions of the gear is based on the source and test tracks mentioned, so YMMV.

Sources: Mojo 2 + Poly via AirPlay, Apple Lightning dongle

Technical Specs

4 Drivers Hybrid Configuration.

Drivers: The Pilgrim features a hybrid setup with one 9.2mm LSR dynamic driver (Liquid Silicone Rubber technology) for sub-bass and three Sonion balanced armature drivers (including a custom-tuned Sonion 2300 BA for mids and a dual-tweeter E50) with a custom 3-way crossover.

1 X 9.2mm LSR DD (Instead of using vibrating bone conductors or traditional PET drivers, EA Labs developed a custom-made 9.2mm dynamic driver featuring Liquid Silicon Rubber (LSR) technology. The LSR is capable of reproducing low frequencies that reach an impressive 10 Hz, compared to the standard 20 Hz of traditional PET drivers. This contributes to a strong sub-bass rumble.

1 X Sonion 2300 BA (Sonion 2300 for mids ensures a versatile, smooth midrange response, creating a well-balanced, natural sound across various music genres).

2 X Sonion E50 BA (the Sonion E50 series, a dual ultra-tweeter balanced armature driver. It extends high frequencies with unprecedented technical capabilities, offering clarity and brilliance).

The Magnesium-Aluminum alloy for the diaphragm delivers optimal performance for a prolonged period of time. This design as per EA Labs, results in remarkably fast, deep, and precise performance with minimal distortion in the output signal, creating a natural and detail-rich full-frequency connection.

Box content


A faux leather case with soft finish and EA logo on top

3 pair of Spinfit

3.5mm to 6.35 adapter


  • Cleaning brush tool
  • A very good 2 core SPC cable, its soft and supple, however to note, EA labs suggest to pair Pilgrim with Effect Aaudio Cadmus 4W which supposedly enhance the clarity & resolution of sound without the harshness, whilst keeping the bass bold but controlled. I have used this iem with its stock cable to ensure the reader gets an impression as to what to expect when they pay $400 as what it retails for.

Vision – EA Labs wanted to get the specials from Annihilator and Diva combined and launch at a lower price point. Let’s see further if or not they were successful based on my subjective opinions.



Fit and comfort:

I would mention by bias first, I like metallic shell iems, resin shells doesn’t give me the confidence as I have had a couple of iems developing cracks either on shell or near the 2 pin section so I prefer metal shell iems though these have to sacrifice on the looks. Its striking silver aluminum housings feature knoll-inspired ridges and a mix of reflective and matte finishes. The look and feel of Pilgirm is very good, these look more than what they cost for sure, with that EE logo printed on the shell, it somewhat gives that premium look to it as we associate Elysian Acoustic Labs with high end. The shiny silver and matte finish is likeable, these have medium sized shell which sits comfortably in ears, so comfort is great on this. Comfortable earpieces ensure a good fit, and the design helps with noise isolation. Pilgrim is shipped with spinfit but even with the largest size of tip provided in the carry case, I was unable to find a good fit with these iems, so I switched to Penon Lacquer and Divinus velvet, fortunately the Divinus Velvet fit worked and helped me get a good seal. I remember when I tried with Spinfit, I was feeling that this iem has compromised mids, but Velvet fixes it for good.


Bass – Low end has enough presence, sub bass rumble can be felt, even in tracks where occasionally you will miss a bass guitar being played, Pilgrim is able to produce it flawlessly, the mid bass presence is alright, not overpowering which is my preference, I had this complaint with the twilight honestly,

Drums, dhol has accurate timbre. The transient response is fast, with decay shorter than expected from this kind of driver configuration. Reference track – Starlight (Muse), Bezubaan (ABCD), Starboy (Weeknd) and Droptop (AP Dhillon)

Timbre and Tonality – one of the aspects I keenly look for in iems is how it produces timbre and how is the tonal balance. I was listening to some Indian classicals on Pilgrim, the tonal character of the instruments is retained, it doesn’t color the timbre which is a good thing. Pianos sound so real; you have to experience it.

Vocals - Beautiful and natural especially female vocals sound majestic. I found female vocals to be more forward than male vocals as they sound a bit laid back or recessed this is due to Bright, Lively Vocal response, male vocals have naturalness, but the presence is not that prominent in comparison meaning some male vocals can sound a bit lean, again some bias to be mentioned because I adore mid centric iems so YMMV. The mid presence in terms of instruments is praiseworthy because they do not overwhelm you neither miss out.

Treble – feels airy and spacious.

There is space between instruments and the vocals being played, I do not hear much of a congestion in busy tracks as well, the transient response is good. Instruments sound like they are surrounded by space full of air. It creates nice ambience for the instruments to play well. Reference track Yaar Mila de from Saathiya – this is so engaging on the Pilgrim, I almost got lost while listening to this track, multiple instruments used in this track has enough space in between.

Details - Every minute detail is presented to the listener, for example I was listening to this track Maahi Ve from album Maahir, there is so many instruments used in this song simultaneously, especially the humming in the start followed by bass and cello, the entire continues with vocal echos, doodling, saxophone and cymbals, the lead singer vocal could have had more heft but sounds natural. The resolution on this can be considered as a benchmark considering its price.

The soundstage of Pilgrim is good. Impressive height but the depth is mediocre, it creates spacious sonic environment due to air and enhances the listening experience.

Instruments are well-placed and images precisely, the level of detail and imaging accuracy adds realism and immersion to the music with great clarity and separation.

Overall – This is a really nice addition to the $400 realm of iems, it is special if you like bright neutral iems with enough heft in sub bass, it can be one of those versatile and easy to listen iems that offer excellent technicalities without burning the pockets. Someone with the budget of $400 and above should definitely consider Pilgrim, more so if you like this kind of tuning. It’s a testament that you don’t need to spend huge to afford excellent sounding iems.
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@DunninLA which are your preferred sets so that I can get an idea whether Pilgrim will suit you or not
Oh, strange my signature info doesn't show up here. My perfect signature is HD600 with more bass and more highs, which I gave up on but I think Focal Elex would be my pick if I wanted to try cans again.

In IEM, I liked the Canon 2 until I noticed the lower pinna gain of the Mega5EST in reviews, and so I used EQ to simulate that tonality on the Canon 2, and preferred that relaxed pinna by a lot. I was hearing glare through upper midrange I didn't know I was hearing until I fixed it with EQ. That made me think... why EQ the Canon 2 to Mega5EST,... just get the Mega5EST, which I did, but found it unengaging, don't know why. I use Canon 2 minimum bass (down/down) but it still felt a lot more prominent than M5E even through they graph the same. The M5E just didn't sound engaging to my ear. Listed it and it sold within 5 minutes, so my ears must be defective :)
Also tried Hype2 but found it lacking in vocal forwardness. Tried AFUL P5 but its tuning to me was off... too much midbass, which caused the vocals to pull back as well as veil, then too much energy 4-6k which made cymbals sound like they jump out at you.

Tried all my tips on both of them... FinalE, CP100, CP145, BGVP A07, Penon Liqueur Orange, Dunu S&S, Tri Clarion, Spinfit W1.

PS: on the Mega5EST 7th, I used both MB Air 2020 headphone out, as well as Onix Alpha X1 dongle in 4.4 mode. The source didn't make any difference... of course also tried all my tips on the M5E as well.


Headphoneus Supremus
A Tale of Two Pilgrims: Elysian Acoustic Labs Pilgrim and Effect Audio Pilgrim:Noir
Pros: Powerful and satisfactory bass, sweet and not-recessed mid-range, trademark Elysian treble, with a technical performance way above their price point.
Cons: Wide bore nozzle makes tip selection challenging, the cable of the OG Pilgrim limited its potential, Pentaconn termination makes cable rolling more difficult
First, I thank Effect Audio and @Sebastien Chiu for organizing this Elysian Acoustic Labs Pilgrim (hereafter referred to as Pilgrim) and Effect Audio Pilgrim:Noir (hereafter referred to as Noir) tour so that I have the chance to do this comparison review.

I like both IEMs and I also put my money where my mouth is: I bought Pilgrim with my own money without any discount (even though I could get a discount if I went through MusicTeck’s review program). However, readers please don’t jump to the conclusion that I prefer Pilgrim over Noir, I will provide details in my review below.

Pilgrim stirred quite a hype when it was first introduced at CanJam NYC 2023. For readers who are not familiar with Elysian Acoustic Labs, it was pretty much a one-man’s boutique IEM shop running by the legendary Mr. Lee from Malysia until recently. All early date IEMs from Elysian were hand-made by Mr. Lee, such as the famous flagship limited edition “X” and the later Annihilator 2021 and 2023 (which was the IEM of the year in the famous watercooler). Those IEMs will cost you anywhere from $3k+ to $4k+. You can image the attention it gained when a $399 Elysian IEM was announced. Many headfiers went to the audition of the Pilgrim and almost all of the first impressions are very positive. The hype was quickly turned into a fast collaboration between the Elysian Acoustic Labs and the Effect Audio, which is a premium cable company based in Singapore. The feedback from the early impressions were adopted and the Noir was created and announced during the next CanJam (Singapre) just a few months after the Pilgrim.


The Build

Both Pilgrim and Noir share a similar 4-driver configuration but differ slightly. Both IEMs have a 9.2mm LSR dynamic driver for the low, but Pilgrim has a 3-way crossover design while the Noir has a 4-way crossover design. Noir uses 2 Sonion BA drivers for mid-range and 1 Knowles BA for highs while Pilgrim uses 1 Sonion 2300 for midrange and 2 Sonion E50 for the highs.

Effect Audio provided Noir with its Bespoke internal wiring mix inside the Noir and a special edition Eros S:Noir cable for Noir.


The Sound Impressions

With both IEMs in their stock cables, I find Noir has better and more elevated bass but very similar mids and treble as Pilgrim with probably thicker and slightly more full-bodied lower mids due to the bass.

However, since the stock cable of Noir is significantly better than that of Pilgrim, I quickly switched the stock cable of Pilgrim to my own Effect Audio code 24. The change is almost instantly, and I have to say that with code 24 cable for Pilgrim, there is almost no difference between Pilgrim and Noir unless you want to do a careful A/B test. Of course, I am using a $699 cable on a $399 IEM, but for the readers who already have their collection of better cables, Pilgrim will be a great value choice since I would strongly suggest to replace the stock cable if you bought Pilgrim.

Next, I need to talk about the tip rolling before I go further regarding the sound impression since the tip selection is very crucial, especially for Pilgrim. Some IEMs are not sensitive to tips, but some are very sensitive, such as Pilgrim and Noir. Both IEMs come with a wide bore nozzle, which makes tip selection even more challenging. I tried some tips with seemingly good seal but very questionable result since I heard very thin and weak bass. When I pushed the IEM further into my ears I could hear a huge difference in the bass and I know the tips are not a good match. For me, only a few tips in my large collection of tips work for Pilgrim, and a little bit more tips work for Noir since it is slightly easier to do the tip rolling. Among them are Penon Liqueur and Clarion Tri.

Therefore, make sure you picked the right tips that work for you before you jump to the conclusion regarding either Pilgrim or Noir since tips make day and night difference.

Now the bass. With both Pilgrim (on code 24) and Noir, the bass is impactful and very satisfactory. The texture of the bass and the bass quality is top notch for the price range. The quantity will satisfy almost everyone except for the most hard-cored bass-heads. The sub-bass and the mid-bass ratio is slightly leaning towards sub-bass, which is a clear contrast between those mid-bass monster IEMs, such as Campfire Audio Bonneville.

The mid-range of Pilgrim and Noir are both sweet and not-recessed, unlike most of the V shaped IEMs. However, I would not consider the mids of Pilgrm/Noir as too forwarded or mid-range focused. Both female and male singers sound fantastic.

Elysian Acoustic is famous for its treble tuning, especially in the Annihilator 2023, which is widely regarded as the treble king of the IEMs. Both Pilgrim and Noir exhibit the Elysian gene here: the treble is well-extended and artfully executed with none-fatiguing highs. However, don't expect the level of Anni 2023 in the treble performance from either Elysian or Noir. You will get a taste of the turning, but you won't get all the goodness, the details, and the technical level.

The sound stage of both Pilgrim and Noir are similar, they are open and tall, not particularly wide, but with good height and depth, large enough to not feel being cramped. Sometimes, at certain music track, I can feel some surprisingly large sound stage, but it is not consistent. The music from both IEMs have good instruments separation and nicely layered. The imaging is also precise enough for the price range. Both IEMs have very good resolution, but again not too much exceeding their price range.

To summarize my sound impression, I found either Pilgrim or Noir a great bargain at today's market. You get a taste of the Elysian Acoustic Labs' tunning, even though I would not call any of them as baby Annihilator (because they are different, especially in the bass and the treble areas), you still can find the gene of Elysian.

Music tracks used in the test

Hip Hop are great to test sub-bass, Pilgrim/Noir has great rumbling in sub-bass. There is absolutely no lack of any bass:

Run The Jewels - Oh My Darling (Don't Cry) (Official Video)

Sade - Slave Song (Audio)

In the following track, male vocal has good note weight, piano with good timbre. Very little difference between Pilgrim OG and Noir:

Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds - Into My Arms (4K Official Video)

Below we can hear a good combination of mid-bass slam and sub-bass ramble, again bass on the fast side. Pilgrim is a little dark. Noir in this case demonstrated highly level of bass performance at both sub and mid bass, very satisfactory, more enjoyable than Pilgrim. Not only I feel the bass is elevated but also more decisive and impactful.

Wrong (2015 Remaster)

Iceland experimentalists, very interesting indie electronic music, with variety of sound to test your IEMs.

We Have A Map Of The Piano Mum

Female vocal with music that can test your limit of treble sensitivity. Noir for me is on the edge. Pilgrim is also on the edge but slightly better.

Beth Orton - Stolen Car

Noir slightly edges out in term of bass resolution, again slightly better bass, though in this case, the quantity is only slightly more in Noir. Both IEMs feel dark.

Teardrop (Remastered 2019)

In the end, my advise to the potential buyers of Pilgrim or Noir: if you did not have a good cable to replace the stock cable of the Pilgrim, Noir with the upgraded cable would be a better choice. If you already had some good spare cable, such in my case, an Effect Audio code 24 (I bought the Pentaconn kit later for that purpose though), Pilgrim would be a better value proposal.
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New Head-Fier
Elysian Pilgrim
Pros: 1. Exceptional Bass Performance. The bass on the Pilgrim is truly a standout feature. It provides a deep and physical response, offering a
visceral experience and It strikes a balance between power and precision.

2. Smooth Upper Treble. The upper treble is beautifully handled, delivering a smooth, airy sound without any harshness.

3. Wide Soundstage.

4. Forward Mids. The midrange is forward and detailed, adding an emotional and engaging element to the music.

5. Precise Imaging. The imaging is precise, particularly on the left-right axis.
Cons: 1. Average Resolution

2. Faceplate have scratches out of the box.

3. Congestion in some busy tracks.

4. Inconsistent Midrange Intensity, but i noticed this is an almost common issue i find on most Mid forward iems i tried.

5. Decent but Not Outstanding Dynamics.
When it comes to evaluating IEMs, it's often about striking the right balance between technical performance and personal preference. The Pilgrim, from the Elysian brand, stands as a good example of quality craftsmanship and thoughtful tuning. However, as we dive deeper into its features and performance, it's important to keep in mind where it stands in the competitive mid-fi market, particularly around the $400 price point.

The Pilgrim showcases a range of strengths that make it a solid choice for many listeners. Its bass response is particularly notable, delivering a deep, visceral impact that's both powerful and precise. The upper treble is another highlight, offering a smooth, airy quality.






Technical Performance


The resolution of the Pilgrim is just average within the mid-fi category. Details are generally clear, though they can sometimes feel dull or less sharp in more complex and fast mix due to a lack of depth in the soundstage.

The soundstage is notably wide for an IEM, more horizontal less vertical space, and it lacks depth. This can result in a somewhat flat and two-dimensional listening experience.

Imaging and Separation
Imaging is precise, primarily operating on a left-right axis, which it handles well, not exactly holographic more 2D than 3D However, the lack of depth can lead to congestion in busy tracks, making separation less distinct and lowers the resolution.

The dynamics of the Pilgrim are decent but not outstanding. It does not exhibit the dynamic prowess of other models in this price bracket, but still the Pilgrim delivers good dynamic range but falls short of delivering dynamic performance of its mid tier level counterparts.

Transients on the Pilgrim is good but still not exceptional. It has accuracy and speed, but there's room for improvement. Enhancing this aspect could reduce congestion and improve clarity.



The bass on the Pilgrim is exceptional, providing a deep and physical response characteristic of high-quality dynamic drivers. When the bass hits, it hits hard, pushing a significant amount of air and delivering a visceral experience. The bass decay is well-balanced, maintaining resolution, tactility and precision. While it doesn't delve too deep, the implementation is exceptionally tactile, accurate, and fast. It provides an atmospheric and clean presence without being overpowering or dry. This is particularly notable for listeners who prefer mid-bass over sub-bass, especially in techno, house and other electronic music that produces a quick repeatetive bass thumps and requires fast decay. The bass is emphasized tastefully, avoiding the detachment often found in pronounced bassy profiles, Pilgrim offers a more harmonious and authoritative yet non-dominant bass experience, the bass on the pilgrim is like having a mind of its own and knows when it needs to be boomy and when to slam with speed without bleed. very well controlled bass but not the most cleanest and detailed but still engaging.

Mids / Treble
The midrange and treble present a more contentious aspect. The mids are noticeably forward, this forwardness can feel unexpected and intense sometimes on select parts of the track but not very often. A distinctive sheen to the sound, enhancing detail and emotion without introducing grain or sibilance, the effect can enhance certain genres but may become too overwhelming with complex and technical music, occasionally reducing the soundstage like a narrowing effect in dense mixes. Despite this, the Pilgrim delivers high-quality sound even in challenging instances, though some of the magic can diminish, requiring a reduction in volume or unfortunately a skip to the next track

Upper Treble / Air
The upper treble is a standout feature, delivering pure bliss. The Pilgrim excels in this region, offering smooth, natural decay without any piercing qualities. It achieves a perfect balance, presenting a balance of warmth and details. This region is notoriously difficult to resolve, but the Pilgrim handles it well, ensuring no peaks, glare, or harshness—just beautiful, airy sound.


The Pilgrim is a very well-built and well-tuned IEM however, this brings us to its primary issue: it doesn't quite belong in its price bracket. When compared to its counterparts in the mid-fi range, particularly those around the $400 mark, the Pilgrim struggles to deliver the "wow" factor that you expect from IEMs in this category.

While the Pilgrim is not a bad IEM by any means—in fact, it performs admirably across almost all genres—it falls short of competing with other mid-fi options. The bass is deep and impactful, the treble is smooth and detailed, and the mids are engaging. However, it lacks the depth and resolution that a truly Mid-fi IEMs offer, which makes it less impressive.

If you're a collector of the Elysian brand and have some extra money to burn, the Pilgrim can be a worthwhile addition to your collection. But for the average listener looking for the best bang for their buck, this IEM would truly shine in the $150-$200 price range. It’s in this lower price bracket that the Pilgrim's strengths would be exceptional, offering a level of performance that would be hard to beat.



New Head-Fier
A Standout at Its Price Point
Pros: Sub-bass
Natural Timbe
Excellent Male & Female Vocals
Instrument Separation
Build Quality
Price to Performance Ratio
Cons: Pentaconn Connectors (I enjoy cable swapping)
Limited Ear Tip Selection
I received a discount on this set from MusicTeck. They requested nothing more than for me to post a fair and honest review.

Look, Fit, Case & Cable
The Pilgrim is a stunning IEM. I love the matte/shiny concentric circles with the logo tastefully displayed at the center. The shells fit wonderfully. I have average size ears and with the included SpinFit tips, I was able to get a good seal, while this review was done with the stock tips, I have put a set of Divinus Velvets on them. The 4.4mm cable is quite premium feeling, without much memory and I did not have a problem with microphonics. As for the case, I’m sure it will get dirty over time, but it really appeals to my middle-aged female aesthetics. Overall, the looks, fit and accessories are very nice and have a premium feel.

Gear used:
  • iphone 14 pro streaming Amazon music HD with Chord Mojo2
  • iphone 14 pro streaming Apple Music with Questyle M15
  • HiBy R4 with local FLAC files
  • HiBy RS6 streaming Amazon Music HD and local FLAC files
Some of my test tracks:
  • Little Bit of Rain (Martina McBride)
  • Lonely Bed (Albert Cummings)
  • Change the World (Eric Clapton)
  • When I Fall in Love (Michael Buble)
  • Believe (Cher)
  • Summer of ’69 MTV Unplugged (Bryan Adams)
  • All Through the Night (Cyndi Lauper)
  • Mercy Street (Peter Gabriel)
  • The Thrill is Gone (BB King)
  • Lose Yourself to Dance (Daft Punk)
When I first put them in and fired up my HiBy RS6 with my BB King’s The Thrill is Gone, my first reaction was an audible WOW! The bass has strong impact and it’s quick for a DD. It’s doesn’t compare in bass to my Symphonium Titan, but it is not lacking in any way. It is good in both quality and quantity and doesn’t bleed into the mids. It has a sub-bass focus to my ears. In my opinion, the bass here competes with IEMs of a higher price point.

The greatness continues into the mids. I find the Pilgrim to be clear and with the proper body and shine for both male and female vocals. There are no obvious dips or bleed. Instruments in this range are also clear and quite precise. On Cher’s Believe many sets highlight the sibilance thereby distracting from the music, but here it was well managed and by no means distracting.

Treble for me is always a tricky subject. I have very middle-aged ears, so I don’t always hear the weaknesses others point out, but I am sensitive to peaks in the 3k-5k region. Therefore, weigh these comments appropriately. I find the treble to be a little bright but not overwhelming at all. It is well extended, carries decent detail and even some sparkle. Overall, it is quite nice.

The clarity, sound stage and resolution are outstanding highlights for me. The clarity is top-notch – the instruments are clear, and the vocals are clean. The micro and macro details are enough to catch your attention but not enough to fatigue – I can still enjoy the musicality of a piece and admire the detail. The Pilgrim is amazingly spacious and airy for its price point and has great layering and imaging.

Overall, the Elysian Pilgrim was an awesome purchase for me. It checks many of my top tier boxes: balanced, great soundstage, clean mids and enjoyable bass. Not to mention it’s superior build quality and nice accessories (although it could have used a couple additional tip options). It is a good addition to my collection and a standout at its price point.
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500+ Head-Fier
Elysian venture to the middle of Mid-Fi
Pros: Fantastic all-rounder
Comfort is great with the right tips
Killing it at this price point
Cons: Treble is safe
Pentaconn, while a great connection, means you probably won't be cable rolling given 2-pins dominance
one who journeys in foreign lands

Elysian venture into the middle of Mid-Fi, how did they fare?

These are all my words and thoughts. I’ve tried to get my points across in the most succinct way.

The Pilgrim comes in a small but effective package, the unboxing experience is what you would expect from something priced a little higher, the two buds are beautifully presented to you when you open the package, with the case, cable, and ear tips underneath. All up very nice and better than the box with sleeve which is common at this price point.

The included cable feels decent, the case is also OK (it’s the same as the 7hz Aurora one, just a different logo on top), the included tips are also Spinfit which is a nice surprise, they didn’t work with the Pilgrim for me but I will use them on other IEMs.

Fit and comfort:

These feel nice in my ears, the shell is metal so when you initially put them in your ear they may be a little cold but they warm up pretty quickly and then I can easily forget about them for the rest of the day. Tip wise I found these to be a little odd, my normal sizing did not work, and I couldn’t get a good fit. In the end I used the Final E largest size in my right ear, and ML in the left, which is +1 size on each side. With these there were no issues at all, but for new buyers suggest that you might need to play around with different sizes until you find one that works. They also work well with the Velvets.


These are smack bang in the Mid-Fi bracket. There is a lot of competition. Do they stack up? Are they at the top of the pile? Let’s find out.

TL;DR - They’re a perfect all-rounder, I generally shy away from all-rounders, preferring sets that have something unique in their presentation, but these just hit the all-rounder tick boxes without sounding bland or boring. Whilst they are an all-rounder, they bring detail that you generally wouldn’t find in this level and you’d be pushing into the > $1k bracket to get something comparable.

Starting with the lower frequencies, the bass has good impact; bass head this is not, but it isn’t light or lacking. The DD looks after the lower frequencies and does a fantastic job, the bass is fast (resembling a BA at points), but has the deep bass feel that only a DD can deliver, exceptional at its price point. A lot of other sets around this price are going with the dual driver approach, I prefer that for some genres, but for 90% of tracks this does everything I want.

Mids are extremely well done, the bass doesn’t interfere at all for me, vocals are extremely well done. Female vocals remind me a little of Diva which were arguably my favorite female vocals ever. Nothing strange, better than nearly everything else I’ve heard at this price point.

The treble is probably the weakest point, there are better sets at $400, but it’s still absolutely above average. Some people touted this as a mini Anni, not for my ears, but it gets the job done. I guess safe is probably the best way to put it, it’s not going to annoy anyone, but on some tracks it does leave you wanting a little more (if that’s your thing).

Detail retrieval, as I mentioned earlier, is crazy. This is punching over twice its price point in this respect. Imaging is good, I had no issues placing instruments or differentiating between them, but when it comes to stage I’d say that it’s fairly decent horizontal, however lacking depth and verticality. It works well as an all-rounder, but you’re not going to be listening to an orchestra in a three-dimensional space around you with these. There are others that will do that at this price point, but you’ll be making other sacrifices, to get this sound with the 3d imaging you’re heading well up in price.

Source wise I used these from a few dongle’s (iBasso DC04 Pro, DC06 Pro, L&P W4), FiiO Q7, and Sony TA-ZH1ES. It scales quite well up the chain.

Subjective thoughts and conclusion: I love these, I’ve had these for three weeks now and there hasn’t been a single track that I’ve put on where I felt I should switch to another set, for that to happen at this price point is unheard of for me. It's going to take a lot for something to come along and challenge this set at this price point. I generally find IEMs at this price grab my attention for a few genres, when they attempt to be an all-rounder they don’t hold my attention for very long, Pilgrim is the exception. At this price point the name is correct, if you’re starting your IEM journey and you’re after a single set around this price point to find out what it’s all about, get this. Perhaps the perfect everyday carry? That's what it has become for me.
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New Head-Fier
A comparative review of Pilgrim and Pilgrim Noir
Pros: (pilgrim)
Good sub-bass
Mostly natural timbre
Cons: (pilgrim)
Can be thin sometimes
typical elysian doesn't sound well without spinfits.
A lot of competition around this price point
stock cable is ok not great.
Thanks to @GiullianSN @EffectAudio
I was able to get my hands on a tour unit of Elysian Pilgrim and Pilgrim Noir this a comparative review comparing both the iem. Even though I was offered the iem by the brand all thoughts and opinions on the matter are my own and are not at all influenced by the brand.

The iems themselves come in a beautiful box that has almost all the accessories needed to get you started. The pilgrim come in a really beautiful white box with a basic 3.5mm cable, carrying case spinfit w1s and a cleaning tool. Can’t comment on Noir as I received them in the same box but the effect audio cable that comes with them is really premium.
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Songs used:
  • A moment apart
  • Eclipse
  • Hotel California Live
  • Mediterranean Sundance
  • Runaway
  • What a wonderful world
  • One for my baby
Sound profile:
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Both the iems have similar bass response but the Noir’s bass certainly feels more prominent due to its tonal balance. Also, it being a tad bit darker in the upper treble region makes the bass more distinct this gives the Noir more fun sounding bass. OG pilgrim has good bass response where I didn’t feel that the bass was lacking anywhere but not as exciting sounding as Noir.

Then song A moment apart the has a distinct bass hit that slowly decays over few seconds this part is articulated quite well by both the iems. As both the iems have more focus on sub bass and so the mid bass doesn’t hit that hard its quite apparent in the track Eclipse by Pink Floyd where the drum hits are clear but don’t have that meaty sense to them like the Fir audio XE6 and Rn6 where you can really feel the drum hits. This dip in the midbass add a good contrast and makes them sound really wide epically for the price bracket.


Both iems have an exceptionally well done mids. It also lacks the signature elysian dip just before pinna that some times make some male vocals lose body this is quite prominent with genre like Jazz where Louis Armstrong’s vocals can sound a bit thin and for me that ruins them. But I am happy to report that the vocals on both the iem are quite nice and have that signature texture that he is known for. I still feel that NOIR just sound a tad bit warmer and I really enjoy it for that track. But when we talk about instruments in the same track it fells like OG Pilgrim has a better position for instrument. The instruments sound a but delicate (Thin) but are well extended. While for the NOIR the instruments convey that sense of emotion and feeling but the trailing end can sound a bit dark also placement is not as good as OG. For female vocals I fell both the iems are on par as evident form A moment apart where the female vocals shine no matter what iem I listen them on. Also, the song Runaway playbacks quit well on both of them.


As mentioned, several times before the NOIR has a bit of darker treble compared to OG pilgrim its not in dark territory just comparatively less. This makes the Hi hats and chimes in a moment apart a bit subdued and not as forward as OG. Also, the air region being darker makes the stage sound smaller. This treble tuning makes the OG sound well separated and exciting whereas, the NOIR sound laidback and relaxing.


I feel both of the iem are really well tuned and are very capable when it comes to tech. But the OG pilgrim has an edge over NOIR due to its extra treble. For the Track Hotel California Hell freezes over version The OG pilgrim sounds a bit wider with me being able to concentrate on all the instruments if needed. Where as NOIR is a bit closed in and sometimes when the bass kicks in some of the instruments can sound a bit blended. The NOIR has a better timbre presentation over OG pilgrim especially for upper midrange where instrument that lie there can be a bit thin for OG.

Here why I would pick one over the other:

OG pilgrim:
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In tracks like:

  • A moment apart
  • Eclipse
  • Hotel California Live
  • Mediterranean Sundance
As you can see a lot of them are very busy tracks with a lot of instruments going off. This is due the tuning larger emphasis on separation. This is the iem that works well enough to be called an all rounder but I find that it works best on these tracks. The techs to price ratio is also really good. Also, the it in general has really great stating ability.

Pilgrim Noir:
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In tracks like:

  • Runaway
  • What a wonderful world
  • One for my baby
All the tracks mentioned above are really male vocals centric and aren’t that busy these iem are really good for these genres if you listen specifically to them this is your pick.
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Conclusion: At the given price point I feel that OG pilgrim is a much better value for money to the point I can comfortably say if you are in the market for a new iem probably pilgrim is your best choice sub $1000 if your music library is as diverse as mine and if you are looking for a very technical sounding iem with good stage and separation. Whereas NOIR does feel a bit premium due to the excellent cable included for free, I feel that it lost me in the treble region.


New Head-Fier
Elysian Acoustic Labs Pilgrim
Pros: Balanced sound signature.
Lightweight and comfortable earpieces.
Good technicalities for the price.
Cons: Limited eartips and accessories.
Midbass is somewhat lean.
Elysian Acoustic Labs Pilgrim


I received the Elysian Acoustic Labs Pilgrim as part of a review tour in my country organized by Hifigo.com. I am not associated with either Hifigo or Elysian Acoustic Labs in any way and have no incentive whatsoever to write anything positive or negative about the IEM. The impressions shared in this write-up are based on my usage of the IEM over a week or so. The Elysian Acoustic Labs Pilgrim is available for purchase from Hifigo.com at the following link:



Although I’ve read about Elysian Acoustic Labs earlier, this is the first time I got to try one of their offerings and I must say, I’m quite impressed. The Pilgrim is a hybrid IEM housing 1 LSR (Liquid Silicone Rubber) Dynamic Driver and 3 Sonion Balanced Armature Drivers with a 3-way crossover. The IEM has an impedance of 9 ohms and a sensitivity of 101dB making it fairly easy to drive. The IEM comes with Pentaconn Ear connectors and cable options of 3.5mm SE, 4.4mm BAL, or both. The unit I received came with 3.5mm SE termination. The IEM comes with Spinfit CP100 ear tips. Apart from this, the package included a white carry case.


The earpieces were quite light in terms of weight and were quite comfortable to wear. I was able to get a good seal with the stock ear tips.


I tried the IEM predominantly with the Xduoo XD05-Pro with the ESS DAC card and Sparkos SS3602 opamps. I also tried it with Hiby R4 and FiiO BTR15, but my impressions here are based on the pairing with XD05-Pro.

Sound Impressions:

The bass has more presence in the sub-bass than the mid-bass region. The bass is well-controlled and is coherent with the rest of the frequency spectrum. The mid-bass is somewhat lean in comparison. This set is not something that bass heads would enjoy, but those who like a balanced signature, are likely to be pleased by the bass response of the Pilgrim. Although the bass is not mind-blowing in terms of either quality or quantity, it is acceptable for an IEM in this price range. Especially for a balanced-sounding set. The good thing is that there is no bass bleed, this is perhaps because the bass attack is well-controlled, and decay is minimal.


Mids are thick and realistic. There is a natural timbre in male vocals and female vocals too are well articulated without being shouty or sibilant. The midrange is somewhat forward in terms of presentation but not too much into your face.

The treble is well done too. It has just the right amount of sparkle and detail. The treble is somewhat laid back, thus, not sounding too energetic. I am very treble-sensitive, hence, for me, the Pilgrim’s treble was very well done. It had just the right amount of openness and airiness without being too bright or crisp.



The soundstage and imaging are acceptable for the price. Nothing extraordinary or mindblowing about it. There is a slight sense of holography in terms of presentation, which at this price point is pretty good. The IEM could do better in terms of layering and resolution, which is apparent in complex tracks.



The Elysian Acoustic Labs Pilgrim is a decent set for the price point with a balanced sound signature and comfortable earpieces. The performance and technical ability is acceptable for the price point.
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New Head-Fier
Elysian Pilgrim Review: Exceptional Sound and Impeccable Craftsmanship
Pros: • Balanced sound signature
• Clear treble
• Wide soundstage with good depth
• Excellent instrument separation
• High-quality design and build
Cons: • None for the price point


The Elysian Pilgrim is part of a review tour organized by @gadgetgod and Hifigo in my country. The tour unit belongs to the brand. This review reflects my unbiased, subjective, and honest opinion of the IEM.

Link to Buy:

Elysian Pilgrim: Elysian Acoustic Labs Pilgrim

Sources Used:

Hiby R4 + Apple Music

The stock eartips included with the IEM were used for the entire review.


Elysian Acoustic Lab strives to deliver exceptional sound quality and immersive listening experiences. Combining advanced technology with artisanal craftsmanship, the company continually pushes the boundaries of audio excellence, catering to audiophiles and professionals who demand nothing but the best. IEMs such as Annihilator and Diva are very popular and loved by audiophiles. The Elysian Pilgrim is a new release from Elysian Acoustic Lab, delivering exceptional sound.


Sound Impressions:



The IEM is tuned for a balanced sound. The quality of the sub-bass is among the best for this price point and tuning. While this IEM is not for bass-heads, it can satisfy most audiophiles. The sub-bass quality is top-notch, making songs like 'Raja Aala' by Avadhoot Gupte more enjoyable.


The mid-bass is slightly lean, affecting the drums and bass guitar timbre. On the other hand, it has a fast attack and decay. The advantage of this tuning is that the mid-bass does not bleed into the mids.


Lower Midrange:

The standout feature of the Elysian Pilgrim is the male vocals and instruments. Male vocals have enough thickness, resulting in a unique and realistic timbre. Snare drums have an amazing texture, and the clean lower midrange sound provides a unique experience.

Upper Midrange:

Female vocals are the highlight here. Some may find the vocals slightly forward, but they are smooth to listen to without being shouty. The 3k to 5k region has a slight dip, giving a very relaxed vocal presentation. Cymbals also feel natural.


The treble is well-extended, with sparky and detailed characteristics. It hints at brightness but remains smooth overall. It has a special, open character that will please audiophiles.





The most striking feature of this IEM is its outstanding technical performance. The level of detail retrieval is exceptional, setting it apart as one of the best in its class. It even has the potential to rival IEMs in significantly higher price brackets. The Pilgrim IEM delivers superb detail retrieval, meticulously presenting both macro and micro details with remarkable clarity. Additionally, the soundstage is impressively expansive, offering excellent instrument separation and precise layering. This combination of attributes makes for an immersive listening experience that truly stands out in its category.


The Elysian Pilgrim IEM stands out as an exceptional choice for audiophiles seeking a balanced and immersive listening experience. With its clear treble, wide soundstage, and excellent instrument separation, it delivers technical performance that rivals even higher-priced IEMs. The meticulous design and build quality further enhance its appeal, making it a worthy addition to any audiophile's collection. Whether you prioritize male vocals, female vocals, or overall detail retrieval, the Elysian Pilgrim offers a unique and satisfying auditory experience. For its price point, it is a remarkable offering that sets a high standard in the world of in-ear monitors. Happy listening!

mars chan

New Head-Fier
Elysian Acoustics Labs Pilgrim review.
Pros: .
- Solid build
- good sounding in general
- great sub-bass
- Clear midrange
Cons: .
- Lacks communication skills
- Not the most detailed bass
- Not the most engaging
- Sounds a little dry.
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Elysian Acoustics Labs Pilgrim review.

The Elysian Acoustics Labs Pilgrim was provided by Hifigo as part of a review tour. Hifigo is one of the largest online audio shops around. Hifigo, thank you for providing this beautiful IEM for a review.

Elysian Acoustics Labs is a high-end audio company based in Malaysia, and the Pilgrim is their least expensive IEM, costing only $399 US dollars, a bargain when you consider that the next more expensive one in their product line-up costs $799, the next one is $1,599, and the most expensive one as of this writing is the Elysian Annihilator, which costs $2,999-.

The unboxing experience is very positive. It is a simple cuboid-shaped box that presents the IEM in an elegant way when opened. Included are three pairs of spinfit eartips, a high-quality case, and a good cable with 3.5mm and pentaconn IEM connectors, which is a bummer really, as I wanted to replace it with a 4.4mm cable, but I don't have a cable with pentaconn IEM connectors. It looks like MMCX, but it's not. The MMCX connector won't fit, as I gently tried. This was before someone told me it's a pentaconn connector. I tried other tips, but I elected to use only the stock tips for this review as I found them to be optimal.

The IEM contains four drivers on each side: one dynamic driver called LSR and three balance armature drivers for the treble. The shell is constructed of metal and has a decent weight to it, giving it the feeling of a high-quality product. When I examined it up close, the machining and polish were superb.

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Sources and other equipment:

I used my Fiio M15s DAP, Sony NW-A45 DAP, Hidizs S9 Pro Plus Martha dongle DAC, and Kiwi Ears Allegro dongle DAC as sources. For the majority of the time, I used the M15s, as it has the most accurate sound and the flattest frequency response of any DACs and DAPs I've heard. I also listened to many of my other IEMs for reference, but I used my Dunu Falcon Ultra Ti and the Xenns Mangird Top as main reference sets. I've listened to several genres of music from my library of thousands of songs.

Power Handling and dynamics:

The Pilgrim can take a lot of power and can go loud with no distortion problems. It has average sensitivity and is easy to drive. The sound is average in energy, dynamics, and contrast.

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Sound signature:

Mid-centric on acoustic music, but bass-boosted with a slightly recessed lower treble, basically a mild W-shape sound signature to my ears.


I find the soundstage to be above average in size; it's big and spacious. The imaging is average for its price; it is decent but nothing to write home about; the images are clear enough to sound enjoyable and have good panning but lack definition on the edges; the sizes are bigger than I like; the spatial layering of the images is not very good; it tends to bunch all the instruments and vocals in a few layers; and the holography suffers because of that. But overall, I have nothing to complain about here, especially if I were just listening to music and not reviewing; it's very enjoyable.

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It is sub-bass focused with good energy, efficiency, and cleanliness; it's nice sounding at any volume level; however, it doesn't have the best texture and articulation of some of the best sets I've heard. And because of that, it also lacks the punchiness and speed of the best. But if you like sub-bass-focused bass, you won't be disappointed.


It is slightly mid-forward, smooth, and even-sounding, but the upper midrange is a little polite.


A clean and slightly laid-back-sounding lower treble, which is too laid-back for my taste, makes the midrange sound a little awkward. I find that it failed to properly communicate the intensity of the distorted electric guitars from metal music, the snap of snare drums, and the hoarseness of some vocals in all genres; however, this could be a positive for some listeners, as I find many people like this kind of sound rendition. The upper treble is appropriately energetic and sounds extended and airy.

For example, in the song Fear of the Dark by Iron Maiden as well as songs from many metal bands, including Megadeth and such, the guitars lack grit a little and the snare drums lack snap a little. It doesn't sound bad, just lacking, and on some genres, it is actually good. I guess this is not the most versatile IEM.

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Compared to DITA audio Project M (325 USD):

To make this short: Project M is much more musically communicative and expressive, while the Pilgrim is more polite and neutral in comparison. The Project M has a more elevated upper treble and a more contrasty sound signature; the Pilgrim sounds flatter. They have about the same soundstage size, but I feel Project M is more spacious and atmospheric. In terms of imaging, Project M is slightly superior, but both cannot compete with my reference IEMs, the Dunu Falcon Ultra Ti and the Xenns Mangird Top.

Compared to Letshueor S15 (300 USD):

The Elysian is superior in terms of clarity, resolution, and bass performance, but I find the S15 to have a more charming midrange and to be more musically communicative.

Compared to Xenns Mangird Top (525 USD):

The Elysian Pilgrim has superior bass to the Xenns Mangird Top, as I find the bass on the Top to sound a little detached at times. The Pilgrim has a more forward-sounding midrange and laid-back-sounding upper midrange; it is opposite the Top, and I like the midrange sound on the Top more. In the treble, the Top is clearly superior in terms of imaging, layering, and separation. The Top has a larger soundstage size and is more accurate and spherical in shape.

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- Solid build
- good sounding in general
- great sub-bass
- Clear midrange


- Lacks communication skills
- Not the most detailed bass
- Not the most engaging
- Sounds a little dry.

Do I like the Elysian Pilgrim? Yes. Does it sound good? Yes, so what's the issue? It doesn't move me emotionally and fails to engage me in the music most of the time; it lacks excitement, but during late-night listening when I'm less animated and just want relaxation, the Pilgrim served me very well. Perhaps the tuning is not my cup of tea for daytime listening, but I'm pretty sure many people like this kind of tuning from what I've gathered. This concludes my review of the Elysian Pilgrim.

Thank you, and happy listening.

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100+ Head-Fier
What are we sacrificing at half the price of the Noir?
Pros: Tuning, performance, build...
Cons: Lack of included tip selection, faceplates scratch very easily...

TLDR version on YouTube: TDLR - Elysian Acoustic Labs Pilgrim

The Elysian Acoustic Labs Pilgrim have been sent to me by HifiGo for me to try them out and to share my opinions in this review. HifiGo have not made any requests and, as always, I will do my very best to be as unbiased as humanly possible in y review.

You can find the Pilgrim via HifiGo here: https://hifigo.com/products/elysian-acoustic-labs-pilgrim

As always, this link is non-affiliate.

To avoid being repetitive in my reviews, you can find all the info about how I create the reviews, equipment used, how I receive the products and how to interpret my reviews by visiting: About my reviews



I recently reviewed the Pilgrim Noir, which is a joint venture between Elysian Acoustic Labs and Effect Audio. I actually received both of the models on the same day, from different places, and the only reason that I chose to review the Noir first was because I had to pick one and there seemed to be less info on the Noir out there.

Today I am reviewing what could be considered the “regular” version of the Pilgrim, the one that is simply the Elysian Acoustic Labs Pilgrim, without any additional collaborations. While I did not do any comparisons between the two models in my review of the Noir, because I hadn’t spent time with the Pilgrim yet, I will make some comparisons in this review. To make things easier, I am just going to refer to this model as the Pilgrim and refer to the model I previously reviewed as the Noir, which makes sense and saves me having to type more than necessary!

Straight of the bat, the first comparison is going to be in the price. I did mention in my review of the Noir that the Pilgrim is around half the price. Well, as of today, you can get the Pilgrim from HifiGo for 366€, while the Noir is available on the Effect Audio site for $799, which is approximately 738€. So yes, the Pilgrim is actually less than half the price of the Noir.

However, there are more differences than just the colour, as the drivers used are also different. Where the Noir used 1x LSR DD for the lows, 2x Sonion BA’s for the mids and 1x Knowles BA for the highs, the Pilgrim opts for 3x Sonion BA’s along with the LSR DD, also opting for a 3-way crossover instead of the 4-way on the Noir. Of course, these are just parts and do not make up the whole, which is something we will talk about in the sound section, yet it is worth noting.

As far as other specs that are different, we find that the Noir has a stated impedance of 8.3 Ohms, with a sensitivity of 103dB, whereas the Pilgrim states a 9 Ohm impedance and a sensitivity of 101dB. Honestly, these differences are so minimal that they are not even worth considering. However, we do notice that both have a low impedance, something that is worth considering when choosing a source for these IEMs.

But anyway, enough with the letters and the numbers, let’s take a proper look at the Pilgrim and find out what we are sacrificing by paying less than half of the cost of the Noir.



As the Noir arrived in a plastic bag, the Pilgrim obviously wins in the packaging department 😉 Seriously though, I can’t compare as I have nothing to compare to.

The Pilgrim arrives in a large and simple matte white box with the Elysian logo on the top in silver, a simple silver design also on the top and Pilgrim in silver letters on one side. That is it, simple and elegant.

Removing the lid reveals the IEMs sitting in two cutouts on a raised platform on a recessed tray. Lifting this tray out, a black box is revealed that simply states “Make no compromises”. Inside this box we find the warranty card, a small booklet about the IEMs, a microfiber cloth with the Elysian logo and, I believe, the cable. I say “I believe” because I honestly can’t remember if the cable came in the box or in the storage case which we find below it.

The storage case, which is found at the very bottom of the box is possibly one of the best looking I have received to date. It is in a faux white leather, oval in shape with the Elysian logo in silver on the top, with a hinged lid that reveals a grey lined interior. The case looks great, however, I think the only way it will stay looking great is if we leave it in the box, as the white case will soon not be white anymore if we use it for transporting the IEMs. Inside the storage case we get 3x sized of Spinfit tips and maybe (if it wasn’t in the box) the cable.

I think that the packaging and presentation of the Pilgrim is great. Simple, elegant and well done, my only complaint is about the lack of tip options included. I have to say that the included tips are not my favourite tips with the Pilgrim but, as always, I try to use what is included in the box unless there is a specific reason not to. Therefore, I have used the included Spinfit tips for this review and I also used the same tips for my review of the Noir. I must say that it is very important to make sure a correct seal is obtained.


Build and aesthetics…

I mentioned in the Noir review, one of the only things that I compared, that the only difference between the two models as far as build is the colour. The Noir is black (obviously) and the Pilgrim is a combination of shiny silver and matte silver (aluminium) which works very well to set off the design of the face plate. The centre of the faceplate features the Elysian logo in a raised format, following the 3D effect of the general design, and there are 4 vents on the faceplate, strategically placed in the darker (matte) areas.

Something that I did forget to mention in my review of the Noir is that they both use Pentaconn connectors for the IEMs in place of the more common 2pin or MMCX connectors found on the majority of IEMs. While this will make it more difficult to find replacement cables if you are wanting to, I have to say that I much prefer these connectors. They are much easier to connect and disconnect than MMCX, while still maintaining the swivel possibility, adding to the comfort.

Now, as I have said, both IEMs are identical. This means that I have had the same issues getting a good seal with the Pilgrim as I did with the Noir. This is something that I found easier to solve by using different tips to the ones included, yet, as I said a moment ago, I have used the included Spinfit tips for both reviews. It is possible for me to get a seal with the Spinfits, it just takes a bit of work. When they are seated correctly and I get the seal correct, then I find them comfortable, even if they are not the lightest or smallest of IEMs, but I still prefer to opt for other tips in this case.

The included cable is obviously different from the Effect Audio cable included with the Noir. No, this cable isn’t as nice as the Eros cable, but it is far from terrible. It is quite basic cable, silver in colour with matching matte silver hardware. I am not the biggest fan of the rubberised transparent outer coating but there is no way I could bring myself to say this is a bad or ugly cable. It matches the IEMs very well, it does its job and there is absolutely no sound difference (to my ears or to my measurement rig) if I swap the cable from the Noir to the Pilgrim. Have I seen better cables? Yes of course, but I have also seen much much worse at higher price points.

In general I am a fan of the aesthetics and feel that the build is very good. Personally I prefer the looks of the Pilgrim to the Noir, even though I usually prefer black to silver. But that is obviously a very personal thing and is irrelevant to my review, or the review of anyone else for that matter.

The one issue with the aesthetics is that the shiny silver finish scratched ver easily. I haven't "babied" these IEMs but I haven't mistreated them either, I have just used them as I would any other IEM. While the Noir, which has actually had more use (due to me reviewing it first and using it for comparisons during this review), still looks like new, whereas the the Pilgrim does show quite a bit of use in the form of scratches on the shiny part of the faceplate. It's a shame because I am a fan of the looks of the Pilgrim.



All tracks mentioned are clickable links that allow you to open the reference track in the streaming service of your choice (YouTube, Tidal, Qobuz, Spotify, etc.)

Ok, the million dollar question, or rather the 372€ question… which sounds best????



Which ice-cream tastes best?

Seriously though, these two IEMs, while they do share a lot of similarities, they are also completely different flavours. There is no best between them. It is a case of which flavour do you prefer.

The Noir is more of a laid back tuning, without becoming overly dark, that doesn’t seem to focus on anything in particular but nothing is really missing.

The Pilgrim is more of a forward tuning, without becoming overly bright, that makes details and separation more apparent than on the Noir, yet doesn’t become overpowering with it.

I could probably just stop there but let’s take a look at the Pilgrim with my test tracks, that is, after the usual look at the graph in comparison to my usual preference curve and the Noir:


We can see from the graph that the Pilgrim is a little closer to my usual preference than the Noir but, as I said in the Noir review and in many other reviews, this preference is by no means a rule as to me liking something more or less, it is just a general reference guide to my usual preferences.

So, starting off with… yes, “Chameleon”, as always! The quality of the Pilgrim matches that of the Noir, that is to say, clean, clear and very well defined. What does change is the quantity and, for my personal tastes, I much prefer the Pilgrim. Both the slightly reduced subbass presence and the slightly more present upper ranges, take the focus away from the lowest ranges and leave me with a flavour that is much more to my personal liking.

Sticking with tracks that I mentioned in my review of the Noir, “No Sanctuary Here” is also a lot less bass focused yet it is not lacking bass at all for my tastes. The bass is full and not anemic in any way, yet it does not stand out above the rest of the spectrum, allowing for a reproduction that I find more balanced. With this track, the vocals took a bit of a step back on the Noir, while that is not the case here. The vocals are more forward but this does not detract from the great performance of the backing vocals and bass in general.

Crazy” is just about perfect on the Pilgrim. There is no sign of excessive reverb in the lower notes of the guitar, with what I would consider a very natural tone to it. There is also no sign of sibilance or harshness in the upper ranges, letting the voice of Daniela Andrade be very clear and present but without any real drawbacks. I can’t say it is the best I have ever heard this track sound but it is definitely up there with some of the best.

With the Noir I mentioned that certain parts of tracks in isolation could come across a little dull and lacking bite, that is not the case here. With “Elephants On Ice Skates”, there is plenty of bite to those bass guitar plucks throughout the intro, with the lower notes of the bass coming in with authority yet not overly done. The same can be said about vocals, such as Dominique Fils’Aime in “Strange Fruit”, where her solo voice is not missing spice yet it is not spicy either, if that makes any sense. While on the subject of “Strange Fruit”, I will also say that the space between the vocal layers is just enough for them to be easily separated yet not too much for them to sound disconnected from one another. They harmonize very nicely.

The same can be said about “Billie Jean” by The Civil Wars, where both the male and female vocals sound clear when solo’d but also sound natural when working together, without either of them really stealing the light from the other.

As far as sibilance, where I noted that the Noir reduced sibilance, I would say that the Pilgrim is pretty neutral in this regard, with “Code Cool” being just on the verge of what I would expect from the track, the same being said for the intro to “Hope Is A Dangerous Thing”. If anything, I would say it is maybe even tamed a little but not to the extent that it is on the Noir.



While I haven’t done an exact comparison section between the Pilgrim and the Noir, I think I have referred to the Noir enough during this review to be able to grasp the differences between the two. As I said at the beginning of the sound section, I don’t feel that there is a better or a worse between them, they are just different flavours and it comes down to personal preference.

If there is one thing I think is possibly better in performance on the Noir, it is detail retrieval. Now that might sound strange, as the Pilgrim is actually more upfront about showing the detail, yet I think that is exactly what leads me to believe that the detail performance of the Noir is slightly better. The Noir does not push detail, in fact, it is just a smooth laid back sound signature that sort of hides detail. Yet, it doesn’t hide detail. When listening to them side by side, there isn’t anything missing from the Noir at all, it is just that the Pilgrim focuses on in more. If I were to EQ the Pilgrim to the tuning of the Noir (something that I haven’t played around with yet), then I think that the detail may suffer a little and not be a good as on the Noir. But, to be honest, this is just speculation and is irrelevant at this moment.

While I enjoy the laid back nature of the Noir, my personal preference is towards the Pilgrim, where I feel it matches my tastes more, especially for an all round set. There are times when my mood would lead me to pick up the Noir over the Pilgrim, yet, if I could only have one, then that would be the Pilgrim. Which I guess is a good thing, as the Pilgrim is half the price of the Noir, as I said at the beginning.

So why is the Noir double the price of the Pilgrim? Well, apart from the possible difference in detail performance (which may not even exist), there is the tuning, the aesthetics and, of course, the Effect Audio cable. The cable is almost 300€, which, if we take that out of the equation, only leaves a 70€ (approx) difference between the 2. Which, I honestly feel is a reasonable price difference. If the cable is worth the 300€ to you, well only you can decide that.

I guess that my conclusion is that both the Pilgrim and the Noir are very good IEMs that cater to different people with different tastes. There really isn’t a better or worse (in my opinion), just a different flavour that depends on the final user and if they are willing to pay that extra or not.

What is for sure is that, in my opinion, for 366€, the Pilgrim is a very impressive IEM.

As always, this review can be found in Spanish both on my blog (www.achoreviews.com) and on YouTube (www.youtube.com/achoreviews)

All FR measurements of IEMs can be viewed and compared on achoreviews.squig.link

All isolation measurements of IEMs can be found on
Have to tried to eq Pilgrim ?

Sonic Sleuth

100+ Head-Fier
Affordable Excellence: A Detailed Review of the Elysian Pilgrim
Pros: Premium design
Comfortable fit
Balanced sound with dynamic bass and clear mids.
Crisp and detailed treble.
Excellent soundstage and instrument separation.
Great value for the price.
Cons: Design might seem basic compared to high-end IEMs.
Larger shell may not fit smaller ears comfortably.
Bass might be underwhelming for bass enthusiasts.
Slightly forward midrange and bright treble might not suit all listeners.
Need to spend extra for cable rolling as Pilgrim needs a pentaconn connectors at the IEM end.

I would like to thank @gadgetgod and HiFiGo for sending this unit as part of the review tour.

You can purchase Pilgrim at the following link (not an affiliate link):

Also, I’m not a seasoned reviewer or a seasoned audiophile, so whatever I say is purely my observations and your results may vary.

I’m not the one to usually focus on specifications and numbers. I focus more on how happy I am with the equipment’s sound and that’s it.

Sources used:
  • xDuoo XD05 Pro (AKM / Rohm) (w/ SS3602 OpAmps)
  • Dita Navigator
  • D16 Taipan
  • Qudelix T-71
  • RME ADI-2 Pro FS R
  • iFi Go Pods

Elysian has finally released an IEM that is accessible to the average listener without sacrificing quality. Priced at $399, the Elysian Pilgrim promises a high-end listening experience that doesn’t break the bank. This review dives into the details to see if it lives up to the hype.



IMG_3222 (1).jpg


The Elysian Pilgrim boasts a sleek and modern design, crafted with high-quality materials. The stainless steel finish gives it a premium look. However, the design may not be as eye-catching as some higher-end models.


One critique I have is that Elysian uses Pentaconn connectors, which isn't an issue in itself. Users who don't own previous Elysian IEMs likely only have spare 2-pin or MMCX cables, meaning they will need to spend extra for cable rolling.


Fit and Comfort:
The Pilgrim is designed to offer a secure and comfortable fit, suitable for long listening sessions. While generally comfortable, users with smaller ears might find the larger shell slightly cumbersome.


The sound signature of the Elysian Pilgrim is balanced with a slight emphasis on the mids and treble, creating a vibrant and engaging listening experience. It retains Elysian’s house sound, making it a versatile choice for various genres.


The bass on the Pilgrim is dynamic and punchy, providing a solid foundation without overpowering the other frequencies. It extends well into the lower registers, delivering a satisfying thump. However, bass enthusiasts might find it a tad underwhelming.

Mid Range:
The midrange is where the Pilgrim truly shines, offering clear and detailed reproduction of vocals and instruments. Both male and female vocals are presented naturally and with a slight warmth that adds richness. Some might find the midrange a bit too forward.

The treble is one of the standout features of the Pilgrim, being crisp, detailed, and well-extended. It provides excellent clarity and airiness without becoming harsh. This quality treble is usually found in more expensive models, making it a great value.

Tone and Timbre:

The tone and timbre of the Pilgrim are natural, with a hint of graininess adding to its unique character.

Staging and Instrument Separation:
The Pilgrim excels in soundstage and instrument separation, creating a spacious and immersive listening experience. Instruments are well-placed within the soundstage, and each element is easily distinguishable.

The Elysian Pilgrim is a fantastic IEM that offers high-end sound quality at an accessible price. With its balanced and detailed sound signature, excellent fit, and impressive technical performance, it competes well against much pricier models. While it may have minor drawbacks, such as a slightly bright treble and a less luxurious design, it remains an exceptional choice for anyone looking to step into high-fidelity audio without breaking the bank.
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You can choose 3.5SE or 4.4Bal cable option at no extra cost when you order, mine came with 4.4Bal.
Sonic Sleuth
Sonic Sleuth
Oh yes! You’re right. Cable rolling however would be difficult unless you have a cable that uses ConX. Let me edit the review to reflect that.
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Headphoneus Supremus
Elysian Acoustics Labs Pilgrim - The First Step into a Larger World
Pros: + Neutral tonality with highlighted midrange
+ Clarity and detail
+ Snappy transient response
+ Bass quality and extension
+ Precise stereo imaging
+ Beautiful design and build quality
Cons: - Flat, unengaging soundstage
- I wish this IEM is even more dynamic and explosive
No matter how I look at it, the economy does not look bright when I write this review. This means audiophiles need to tighten their wallets, and manufacturers need to find a way to squeeze through this tightening, generally by releasing more budget-friendly entries. Today, we look at Pilgrim, the latest entry in this incredibly crowded market from the illustrious Eastern boutique Elysian Acoustic Labs.



  • What I look for in an IEM is immersion. I want to feel the orchestra around my head, track individual instruments, and hear all of their textures and details. I’m not picky about tonality, as long as it is not make the orchestra, violin, cellos, and pianos sound wrong.
  • I rate IEMs within with a consistent scale from 1 (Poor) to 3 (Good) to 5 (Outstanding). An overall ranking of 3/5 or above is considered positive.
  • Ranking list and measurement database are on my IEM review blog.
  • The terminology for subjective impressions in this review is based on the Audio Wheel for reproduced sound defined in the technical report ITU-R BS.2399-0
  • I purchase the unit for this review at a discount from Hifigo. I have no affiliation with or financial interest in Hifigo and Elysian Acoustic Labs.
  • The unit retails for $400 at the time this review was published. Unaffiliated link: Hifigo webstore

General Information​

Pilgrim is a hybrid IEM consisting of 1 dynamic driver (DD) and 3 balanced armature drivers (BA). The DD has a diameter of 9.2mm and features a magnesium-aluminium alloy diaphragm and “liquid silicone rubber” surround. This design promises long excursion (flexible surround) while maintaining minimal distortion and agility (metal diaphragm), allowing its bass response to reach as low as 10Hz.

The BA drivers include the Sonion 2300 midrange driver and the Sonion E50 tweeter driver. The incoming signal is split across three types of drivers using a 3-way crossover circuit. All drivers output into a 3D-printed internal chamber, easing production and increasing consistency and quality control.

Non-sound Aspects​


Elysian Acoustic Labs is well known for its theatrical packaging, and it’s good to see that trend continue with Pilgrim. The IEM comes in a cubical box, and the unboxing experience is quite elaborate. Like other Elysian IEMs, Pilgrim comes with Spinfit ear tips.

Earpiece design: The earpieces are fully metal. They are not shaped to lock into the outer ears like others, which are shaped like custom IEMs. The faceplate of Pilgrim is quite intricate, with alternative rings of matte and polished metal. In traditional Elysian fashion, Pilgrim has substantial nozzles that are slightly too large for the supplied spin-fit tips.


Fit, comfort, and isolation: After finding the right ear tips to pair with Pilgrim, I found this IEM to be comfortable with average isolation, not unlike other vented IEMs. I did not experience pressure buildup or driver flex in my tests.

Ear tips recommendation: I don’t think the spinfit tips are a good fit for Pilgrim (or most Elysian IEMs). Like most IEMs with strong treble response, choosing ear tips is crucial. Pilgrim works best with ear tips that push the nozzles deeper into the ear canal to avoid unwanted treble peaks. My top choices are Tri Clarion and Velvet ear tips at the right size so that the ear pieces rest against the concha of my ears. In this configuration, I have no problem with the tonal brightness of the treble of Pilgrim.

Sonic Performance​

Testing setup:

  • Sources: iBasso DX300, L&P W4
  • Cable: Stock 4.4mm cable
  • Ear tips: Tri Clarion medium
The subjective impression is captured based on the Sound Wheel below.


Timbre: Figure shows the frequency response of Pilgrim against the Harman in-ear target. Measurements were done with an IEC-711-compliant coupler and might only be compared with other measurements from this same coupler. Above 8kHz, the measurement might not be correct. Visit my graph database for more comparisons.


It is helpful to think of an IEM as a filter that highlights or subdues different parts of the incoming audio signal. This effect can be measured objectively by the squiggly lines above, called Frequency Response (FR) graphs, which measure how loud an IEM is at different frequencies from 20Hz (bass) to 20kHz (upper treble). Subjectivity is how your ears and brain interpret the effect of that filter on your music and decide whether it is “enjoyable.” There are some “rules of thumb” when it comes to tonality, but most interesting IEMs usually bend the rules masterfully.


The tonal balance of Pilgrim can be described as slightly neutral-bright with a full and relatively homogeneous frequency response. Let’s unpack this statement. By “slightly” neutral-bright, I mean the Pilgrim mostly achieves a balance in the loudness of bass, midrange, and treble. Still, the treble is a bit more emphasised than the bass. Meanwhile, the midrange sounds perfectly uncoloured. The music reproduction of Pilgrim is “full” because it has a strong extension toward both ends of the frequency spectrum. Pilgrim’s homogeneity or “coherence” is acceptable because it does not have any significant gap across the frequency response (e.g., between bass and midrange). However, there is still a sense of segmentation between bass, mid, and treble. These impressions hold across vocal-centric “weeb music” (Kimi wa Boku ni Nineiru by See-Saw), progressive rock (Playing God by Polyphia), orchestral (Nimbus 2000 from “John Williams: The Berlin Concert”), and epic soundtrack (Victory by Two Steps from Hell). Depending on your choice of ear tips and how you fit the IEM, the treble might be more or less sizzle. I have zero problems with the brightness of Pilgrim, even with “deadly” recordings like Shivers by Ed Sheeran, after opting for Tri Clarion and a deeper fit.


The treble of Pilgrim is slightly above neutral in quantity, with a high level of brilliance. It is highly extended, creating a sense of airiness and openness in the reproduced music. The treble also has strong clarity.

The midrange of Pilgrim is quite loud in the mix, meaning voices and instruments are often pushed forward and present. When testing Pilgrim, I rarely find myself adjusting volume to hear the midrange more clearly.

The bass of Pilgrim keeps up with the midrange in terms of loudness. I didn’t need to increase the volume to hear more bass details or impact. The bass extends deep into the sub-bass, meaning rumble and physical impact can be felt. However, Pilgrim does not exaggerate these qualities. During my tests, I didn’t detect any hint of boominess or boxiness with the bass response. However, I wish that Elysian tunes the Pilgrim with more bass to highlight the available bass quality.


Dynamic: The representation of dynamic is both a strength of Pilgrim and an area where I wish it does a better job. Confusing? Let’s unpack.

An excellent track to highlight the dynamic reproduction of Pilgrim would be “The Way of the Samurai” from the Ghost of Tsushima soundtrack. Every transient (e.g., drum hits, articulation from the strings) is snappy, accurate, and clear. The bass feels precise. Every bass note has a physical sensation as if pressure is pushed against the eardrums. In other words, Pilgrim is a snappy IEM.

However, I wish that Elysian pushes the dynamic of Pilgrim just a touch further, perhaps by raising both the bass and the treble by a few dB. Even though Pilgrim already has a powerful presentation, it left me wanting even more of that snappy, tactile response. This is not an impossible request, as both Pilgrim’s siblings I happen to have for comparison, the Gaea and Annihilator 2023, slam harder in A/B tests.


Resolution: To me, “resolution” can be broken down into three components: (1) Sharpness, incisiveness, or “definition” of note attacks (see the figure below). (2) The separation of instruments and vocals, especially when they overlap on the soundstage. (3) The texture and details in the decay side of the notes. The first two give music clarity and make it easy to track individual elements of a mix. The last provides music details and nuances.


The resolution of Pilgrim is quite impressive. This IEM excels in clarity, presence, and cleanness. It means that even with busy tracks like the Ghost of Tsushima soundtracks or the controlled chaos in the “Remember That You Will Die” album by Polyphia, Pilgrim maintains an impressive ability to keep instruments spatially separated on the soundstage whilst retaining the timbral accuracy of each and ensuring that essential parts of the mix are upfront and highlighted. Yes, the clear stereo image of Pilgrim does falter to some degree when I listen closely, especially in comparison with “top of the line” IEMs like its sibling Annihilator 2023. But still, in a vacuum, Pilgrim is a crystal clear IEM.

Pilgrim is also highly competent at detail retrieval. For instance, when I listen to Leonidas Kavakos’s “Bach: Sei Solo” album, I can hear nuances and texture in the violin sound and easily discern the reverberation of the hall where the recordings were made. It also held its own in direct comparison against benchmark IEMs for good detail retrieval in my collection and only truly falters when pitched against the likes of U12T and Annihilator 2023.


Spatial: Stereo imaging or “soundstage” is a psychoacoustic illusion that different recording elements appear at various locations inside and around your head. Your brain creates based on the cues in the recording, which are enhanced or diminushed by your IEMs, your DAC, and your amplifier. In rare cases, with some specific songs, some IEMs can trick you into thinking that the sound comes from the environment (a.k.a., “holographic”). The figure below shows how I hear and describe soundstage


The spatial reproduction is where I have the most bones to pick with Pilgrim. Precise but lacking immersion is how I would describe the soundstage and imaging of Pilgrim.

First, let’s talk about “spatial extent”, or the shape and size of the soundstage. On the plus side, Pilgrim has excellent width, meaning the left-to-right stretch of the stage is reasonably competent. When sound is pushed all the way to the sides, such as the voice of Kirstin from Pentatonix in “Bohemian Rhapsody”, it can appear outside the ears, hovering over my shoulders. On the other hand, the depth is not great. Simply put, most of the “action” on Pilgrim’s soundstage is condensed on a flat plane, without much contrast between closer and further away sound. As a result, the soundstage of Pilgrim does not create a strong envelopment illusion (i.e., not “wrapping” around the head).

Next, let’s talk about “localisation”: the ability to pinpoint the location and size of audio sources within a soundstage. As I mentioned above, the sense of distance is not a strong suit of Pilgrim due to the way it shapes the soundstage. Similarly to the majority of IEM, sound sources are primarily perceived as coming from inside the head unless they are panned all the way to the sides. Fortunately, the precision of the location is quite good with Pilgrim, meaning it is pretty easy for me to pinpoint the location and size of the sound sources on the soundstage.


Multimedia usage:

The precise sound localisation of Pilgrim translates to excellent performance in FPS gaming. For example, in CS:GO, it is easy to pinpoint and track the angle and distance of footsteps and gunshots. I’m surprised that Pilgrim’s lack of soundstage depth does not disadvantage pinpointing sounds coming from the front in these games. Action movies also sound good with Pilgrim.



Main test track: Playing God - Polyphia

As usual, I started my tests with the humble Apple dongle. My first impression was a congested and condensed soundstage. Moreover, both the bass extension and treble extension suffer. Even though the Apple dongle can provide the voltage, it cannot maintain a current supply that is good enough to drive the Pilgrim well. The sound is not bad, but I cannot recommend this pairing due to the loss of performance.

Switching to a good dongle like the L&P W4, I immediately notice a more spacious soundstage and better sub-bass response. The improvement from W4 to DX300 was not as noticeable. However, the DX300 does change the tonality of Pilgrim slightly, making the midrange warmer and thicker.

For fun, I pair Pilgrim with Topping G5, acting as a pure amplifier for DX300. I hear an even snappier transient response, and the stage has a greater sense of depth and layering. This result suggests that Pilgrim can “scale” with desktop-class setups. I would leave it to readers to explore this path.



Source: L&P W4

Main test track: One Winged Angel - The Danish National Symphony Orchestra


Vs AFUL Performer8: The Performer8 (P8) is one of the overachievers in the “mid-fi” market regarding resolution and imaging precision. In fact, it was one of the first IEMs I tested that could squarely match my benchmark for a “great” level of technical performance in these aspects. Therefore, my first AB test for Pilgrim must definitely be against the P8. My first observation is how these IEMs are tuned so similarly. Both have a “flat” midrange with reserved upper midrange, strong bass extension, and strong treble extension. At the same time, the tonality of these IEMs is also so different to the point that they always make the midrange of the others feel uncanny within the first few seconds of switching from one IEM to the other. This difference is most likely due to how they tune the 1.25kHz region. I prefer the more conventional approach of Pilgrim here.

Regarding resolution and imaging, I spent quite a lot of time switching back and forth, twisting my ears to try to hear the difference. Still, I have to conclude that they are practically identical. Similar note definition, similar instrument separation, similar micro details at the decay of the notes, similar precise imaging, similar shallow soundstage. If I nitpick, I would say Pilgrim has a bit more texture, detail, and extension in the bass region, and the stage of Pilgrim is a bit less “flat” than P8.


Vs Andromeda 2020: Andromeda 2020 has been and remains to be my benchmark for the “great” level of resolution and staging. How does Pilgrim fare? The first difference is the tonality: the Pilgrim’s midrange is more neutral, whilst Andromeda 2020 is slightly warmer. Moving past the tonality, the following key difference is the bass response. The bass of Pilgrim is simply better, no matter how I look at it. Where Andromeda 2020 beats Pilgrim soundly is the shape of the stage. In back-to-back comparisons, Andromeda 2020 exaggerates the flat stage of Pilgrim. Resolution-wise, the Pilgrim emphasises note attacks more, but overall, they separate instruments and resolve detail practically at the same level.


Vs Annihilator 2023: Annihilator 2023 (Anni 2023) is a “tri-brid” flagship of Elysian (if we don’t count the shadowy and exclusive “Dio” prototypes that are pretty much folklore for average joes like myself). In fact, when we think of Elysian, many of us immediately think of Annihilator. Some of us enthusiastically predicted that Pilgrim would be the “baby Annihilator.” Is there any truth in this prediction?

Not really. Firstly, these IEMs are tuned differently. While Pilgrim is mostly neutral IEM, Anni 2023 is a V-shaped hype machine. Stronger midbass and more treble energy across the entire frequency range make Anni 2023 noticeably more punchy and exciting than Pilgrim. Anni 2023 is head-banging when the beat drops, whilst Pilgrim is … alright. Regarding the resolution, whilst Pilgrim is a resolving IEM, as demonstrated in the previous comparisons, it is noticeably less detailed in AB tests against the Anni 2023. For instance, after listening to the choral section with Anni 2023, I was surprised to find how mushy, less separated, and less detailed the choral section is rendered by Pilgrim. The same situation applies to every other instrument and the subtle reverberation in the track.


Vs Effect Audio x Elysian Gaea: Gaea is a divisive IEM. Similarly to Anni 2023, it is a V-shaped hype machine that can be too intense for some listeners and libraries. I like this IEM for larger orchestral pieces, “epic soundtracks”, or an energy boost. So, how does the Pilgrim compare against the Gaea?

First, Pilgrim is obviously less energetic and dynamic than Gaea. On the other hand, vocals on Pilgrim are always spot on, while some voices can be quite shrill and strident with Gaea. Regarding resolution, Gaea is half to one step ahead, regardless of how I view it. The stage of Gaea also sounds more 3D, translating to a more immersive experience for the type of music I pair the Gaea with. Your music library and your taste would determine the choice between these IEMs.



Elysian Acoustic Labs emerged swinging in the “mid-fi” market with the Pilgrim. No, it is not the fabled “baby Annihilator” that some of us have hoped for before the release. Yet, Pilgrim carries the torch of its forebearer, the DIVA and Annihilator, with excellent treble extension, bass extension, and a natural tonal balance that elevates vocal music. The theatric flairs in packaging and accessories of DIVA and Annihilator are also preserved as much as the budget allows. The tuning, technical performance, build quality, and overall packaging make Pilgrim an all-rounder and compelling IEM and, in my opinion, a worthy addition to the Elysian Acoustic Labs family.

Should you get Pilgrim? As always, the answer is “it depends.” If you prefer your music to be rich, warm, and “analogue,” this IEM is not a good choice. If you want an exaggerated, big, bold, even mushy/bleedy bass response, this IEM is also not a good choice. If you wish for an enveloping and engaging soundstage, this IEM might not be the one. But if you want a snappy, clean, clear, neutral presentation with excellent vocal reproduction, if you want clarity and details, Pilgrim receives a recommendation from this reviewer.

What I like about this IEM:

  • Neutral tonality with highlighted midrange
  • Clarity and detail
  • Snappy transient response
  • Bass quality and extension
  • Precise stereo imaging
  • Beautiful design and build quality
What could be improved:

  • Flat, unengaging soundstage
  • I wish this IEM is even more dynamic and explosive
Absolute Sonic Quality Rating: 4/5 - Great

Bias Score: 4/5 - I like this IEM


Updated: June 9, 2024
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Will take notes from your review for my own improvements
I think the integration of the new review vocabulary could be handled a bit better, maybe with an explanatory paragraph of its own like Resolution and Soundstage.
Great and thorough review! Presentation of the Pilgrim is definetily designers choice :tophat::shirt:


New Head-Fier
𝑬𝒍𝒚𝒔𝒊𝒂𝒏 𝑨𝒄𝒐𝒖𝒔𝒕𝒊𝒄𝒔 𝑳𝒂𝒃 𝑷𝒊𝒍𝒈𝒓𝒊𝒎 𝑹𝒆𝒗𝒊𝒆𝒘: 𝑬𝒍𝒚𝒔𝒊𝒂𝒏 𝒆𝒏𝒕𝒓𝒚
Pros: Good unboxing experience
Amazing build quality
Industrial design
Free SpinFit ear tips
Good cable quality
Balanced sound
Clean and punchy bass
Warm and lush midrange
Energetic and detailed yet non-fatiguing highs
Competent technicalities
Cons: Bulky overall size
Nozzle can be a bit too thick
Pentaconn ear connection will make it a bit harder finding replacement/upgrade cables
Can sound a bit dry depending on the eartips
Barebone accessories
Overall sound can be a bit too boring for some looking at a specific sound profile
𝑬𝒍𝒚𝒔𝒊𝒂𝒏 𝑨𝒄𝒐𝒖𝒔𝒕𝒊𝒄𝒔 𝑳𝒂𝒃 𝑷𝒊𝒍𝒈𝒓𝒊𝒎 𝑹𝒆𝒗𝒊𝒆𝒘: 𝑬𝒍𝒚𝒔𝒊𝒂𝒏 𝒆𝒏𝒕𝒓𝒚

|| 𝗜𝗻𝘁𝗿𝗼𝗱𝘂𝗰𝘁𝗶𝗼𝗻 ||

Elysian Acoustics isn’t the most known brand in the IEM hobby, but veterans definitely associate the brand with higher-end sets with higher-end prices. That all changes with the introduction of the all new Pilgrim, bolstering a price tag starting at $399.

447287556_481593867728968_6283954171626996233_n (1).jpg

Equipped with a 1DD+3BA driver configuration and using a pentaconn ear connector, the Pilgrim is what seems to be made as “ the first step “ into the Elysian Acoustics product array.

|| 𝗗𝗶𝘀𝗰𝗹𝗮𝗶𝗺𝗲𝗿𝘀 ||

I am in no way, shape, or form affiliated with the brands I review and do not give out preview privileges.

This set is sent in exchange for an honest review. There is no material or financial incentive for me to do this review and I guarantee no exchange has been done by both parties to influence or sway our opinions on this product.

My thoughts and opinions are of my own. My experience will entirely differ from everybody else. The contents of this review should not be considered factual as this hobby heavily leans on subjectivity. YMMV.

I don’t do rankings or tier lists as they can get outdated immediately as a reviewer can change their thoughts of a product to a certain extent. If you do want a recommendation then feel free to reach out so I can help out


𝗜 𝗮𝗺 𝗻𝗼𝘁 𝗮𝗳𝗳𝗶𝗹𝗶𝗮𝘁𝗲𝗱 𝘁𝗼 𝗘𝗹𝘆𝘀𝗶𝗮𝗻 𝗔𝗰𝗼𝘂𝘀𝘁𝗶𝗰𝘀 𝗻𝗼𝗿 𝗿𝗲𝗰𝗲𝗶𝘃𝗲 𝗺𝗼𝗻𝗲𝘁𝗮𝗿𝘆 𝗶𝗻𝗰𝗲𝗻𝘁𝗶𝘃𝗲𝘀 𝗮𝗻𝗱 𝗳𝗶𝗻𝗮𝗻𝗰𝗶𝗮𝗹 𝗴𝗮𝗶𝗻𝘀 𝗮𝘀 𝘁𝗵𝗲𝘆 𝗽𝗿𝗼𝘃𝗶𝗱𝗲 𝗺𝗲 𝗮 𝗿𝗲𝘃𝗶𝗲𝘄 𝘂𝗻𝗶𝘁 𝗳𝗼𝗿 𝗮𝗻 𝗲𝘅𝗰𝗵𝗮𝗻𝗴𝗲 𝗼𝗳 𝗳𝗮𝗰𝘁𝘂𝗮𝗹 𝗮𝗻𝗱 𝘀𝗶𝗻𝗰𝗲𝗿𝗲 𝗳𝗲𝗲𝗱𝗯𝗮𝗰𝗸 𝗳𝗿𝗼𝗺 𝘆𝗼𝘂𝗿𝘀 𝘁𝗿𝘂𝗹𝘆.
𝗢𝗻𝗰𝗲 𝗮𝗴𝗮𝗶𝗻, 𝗜 𝘄𝗼𝘂𝗹𝗱 𝗹𝗶𝗸𝗲 𝘁𝗼 𝘀𝗲𝗻𝗱 𝗺𝘆 𝗴𝗿𝗮𝘁𝗶𝘁𝘂𝗱𝗲 𝘁𝗼 𝗛𝗶𝗳𝗶𝗚𝗼 𝗳𝗼𝗿 𝗽𝗿𝗼𝘃𝗶𝗱𝗶𝗻𝗴 𝘁𝗵𝗶𝘀 𝗿𝗲𝘃𝗶𝗲𝘄 𝘂𝗻𝗶𝘁. 𝗜 𝘁𝗿𝘂𝗹𝘆 𝗮𝗽𝗽𝗿𝗲𝗰𝗶𝗮𝘁𝗲 𝘁𝗵𝗲𝗶𝗿 𝗴𝗲𝗻𝗲𝗿𝗼𝘀𝗶𝘁𝘆 𝗮𝗻𝗱 𝘁𝗿𝘂𝘀𝘁 𝘁𝗼𝘄𝗮𝗿𝗱𝘀 𝗺𝗲 𝗮𝗻𝗱 𝗼𝘁𝗵𝗲𝗿 𝗿𝗲𝘃𝗶𝗲𝘄𝗲𝗿𝘀.


| 𝗣𝗮𝗰𝗸𝗮𝗴𝗶𝗻𝗴, 𝗨𝗻𝗯𝗼𝘅𝗶𝗻𝗴 & 𝗔𝗰𝗰𝗲𝘀𝘀𝗼𝗿𝗶𝗲𝘀 |

The package that the Pilgrim comes with is this white cubical hard-box with Elysian branding and some design cues in reference to the actual IEMs themselves. Remove the top lid will allow you to see the Pilgrim on what seems to be a podium-like stand. Underneath is another box with paperwork and the included white case containing the remaining accessories.


𝗜𝘁𝗲𝗺 𝗯𝗿𝗲𝗮𝗸𝗱𝗼𝘄𝗻:
Warranty PVC card
Elysian Acoustics Labs Pilgrim IEMs
White 2-core SPC pentaconn ear cable(3.5mm/4.4mm)
Micro-fiber cloth
White leather magnetic hard case
3 sets of SpinFit eartips (S/M/L)
Cleaning brush tool

Overall unboxing experience is quite nice. Though it doesn’t showcase any complicated mechanism for the unboxing, it does have a pretty nice presentation of the product and really hypes you up for it.


As for the accessories, the inclusions are pretty bare bones especially at this price point, but the quality of inclusions are definitely up there. The cable is really nice and well-behaved. I always find myself liking cables that aren’t stiff and thick, and the stock cable of the Pilgrim fits my definition of an amazing cable

| 𝗕𝘂𝗶𝗹𝗱 & 𝗗𝗿𝗶𝘃𝗲𝗿 𝗖𝗼𝗻𝗳𝗶𝗴𝘂𝗿𝗮𝘁𝗶𝗼𝗻 |

Elysian Acoustics made the Pilgrim out of a hefty stainless steel material with a gunmetal finish. The overall feel of the IEMs is really outstanding, the heft really gives it a sense of quality. It comes in either this colorway or their special “Noir” edition that costs a lot more. I’m not sure regarding the difference besides the color but it does seem to be simply a color difference.


Design-wise, the Pilgrim has an industrial feel with the faceplate looking multi-layered texture. It does have glossy accents on the faceplate along with a nicely placed Elysian Acoustics logo. Pilgrim exudes such uniqueness with a textured look for the faceplate.

In terms of the form of the Pilgrim, it has a more universal form and fit, with no deep grooves and curves. The nozzles have good length but are quite thick in terms of the width. A lip is also present on the nozzle to help keep eartips in place. I would also like to add the presence of the ventilation holes on the faceplate, integrated nicely with the design of the faceplate.


Notably, the Pilgrim uses the pentaconn ear connection, which is also present on all Elysian products. This type of cable is akin to the MMCX connector standard but is less mainstream. This could be a problem looking for aftermarket cables, making you dig a bit deeper for replacement or upgrade cables for the Elysian products.


Overall the design of the Pilgrim is quite lowkey, yet very recognizable in the sea of IEMs. The size of the Pilgrim can could fitment issues however, it does have a bit of bulk and weight.

| 𝗜𝘀𝗼𝗹𝗮𝘁𝗶𝗼𝗻 |

The vents on the faceplate prove to be not much of an issue for the isolation of the Pilgrim. With the proper fit, the Pilgrim can isolate all unwanted noise by its passive isolation.

| 𝗖𝗼𝗺𝗳𝗼𝗿𝘁 |

One would assume that the fit of the Pilgrim would be a tricky one considering the nozzle and the overall size of the IEM. Despite this, the Pilgrim sits quite snug on my ears but will feel fatigued from time to time.


The occlusion effect on the other hand is a little bit less than your average IEMs. This could be the cause of the vents on the faceplate making talking with these on a bit less jarring.

** 𝗞𝗶𝘄𝗶𝗘𝗮𝗿𝘀 𝗔𝗹𝗹𝗲𝗴𝗿𝗼 | 𝗛𝗶𝗕𝘆 𝗙𝗖𝟲 | 𝗦𝗼𝗳𝘁 𝗘𝗮𝗿𝘀 𝗨𝗖 𝗖𝗹𝗲𝗮𝗿 𝗲𝗮𝗿𝘁𝗶𝗽𝘀 (𝗦𝗺𝗮𝗹𝗹) **

| 𝗗𝗿𝗶𝘃𝗮𝗯𝗶𝗹𝗶𝘁𝘆 |

Even with the driver array, the Pilgrim isn’t power hungry. I find myself being quite satisfied with it without pushing much gain on my sources. Though, as always do use the best accessible source for a gain control.


|| 𝗦𝗼𝘂𝗻𝗱 ||

Overall sound of the Pilgrim is that of a very balanced one. Though it has a tendency of being dry sounding depending on the fit and eartips, it is for the most part quite balanced in all frequencies.

| 𝗕𝗮𝘀𝘀 |

The Elysian Acoustics Pilgrim delivers a warm neutral sound signature with a very detailed bass response. The subbass is present and provides a solid foundation, while the midbass is quick and impactful, ensuring that basslines and drum hits are tight and well-defined.
Notably, the Pilgrim's bass tuck is nonexistent, allowing for an extended and full bass experience without any artificial roll-off.

| 𝗠𝗶𝗱𝘀 |

The mids on the Pilgrim are a standout feature, offering a sense of extension and air. They possess both warmth and body, making vocals and instruments sound rich and engaging. The timbre is natural, but depending on the choice of eartips, there can be a tendency for the mids to sound slightly dry.

Nonetheless, the mids maintain clarity and detail, ensuring that the music remains lively and immersive.

| 𝗛𝗶𝗴𝗵𝘀 |

The highs of the Pilgrim are relaxed yet detailed, providing a great deal of energy without becoming fatiguing or harsh. This balance allows for an enjoyable listening experience, where treble-intensive tracks are rendered with finesse and precision.

The highs add a touch of sparkle to the overall sound, enhancing the sense of realism and depth in the music.

| 𝗧𝗲𝗰𝗵𝗻𝗶𝗰𝗮𝗹𝗶𝘁𝗶𝗲𝘀 |

In terms of technical performance, the Pilgrim excels. It offers excellent imaging, separation, and layering, allowing each instrument and sound to be distinctly heard and appreciated.

The soundstage, while not the widest, is well-defined and provides a coherent and immersive listening experience. The Pilgrim’s ability to present micro-details and nuances in the music makes it a versatile choice for a wide range of genres.

|| 𝗖𝗼𝗻𝗰𝗹𝘂𝘀𝗶𝗼𝗻𝘀 ||

The Elysian Acoustics Pilgrim is a well-balanced and versatile IEM, embodying the "jack of all trades, master of none" philosophy. It offers a warm neutral sound signature that caters to a broad audience, with detailed bass, extended and airy mids, and relaxed yet energetic highs.


While it may not specialize in a particular sound profile, its overall performance and technical capabilities make it a solid choice for anyone looking for an IEM that can handle a variety of musical styles with ease.


New Head-Fier
Quick Impressions of the Pilgrim
Pros: Safely tuned/balanced
Good detail retrieval
Excellent fit and comfort
Long term listening companion
Easy to drive
Cons: Not for trebleheads or bassheads (nitpick only)
Thanks to GadgetGod and Hifigo for the review tour of the much anticipated mid budget iem from Elysian - The Pilgrim (White/First Path)!

As always, opinions expressed here are mine and have not been influenced in any way.

Elysian Acoustic Labs have a lot of very well made top shelf iems such as the Annhilator, Gaea, Diva etc. I previously owned the Gaea and know how good they sound.

WhatsApp Image 2024-06-08 at 18.28.25_1d3f8464.jpg

When the Pilgrim was annouced, it did take a lot of people by surprise (me included) considering its price point and hence the anticipation of listening to the iems.

The Pilgrim comes in 2 colors/flavours and this review is for the White version.

Package and build

The Pilgrim comes in a nice cubic box with a white iem carry case. The iems are housed in industrial grade 304 stainless steel and will be able to stay strong for a long time.
WhatsApp Image 2024-06-08 at 18.28.25_322518d5.jpg

Inspite of the stainless steel construction, the iems dont feel heavy at any point in time. With a medium sized nozzles, the comfort is very good with the iems.
Adding to the comfort, the cables are not heavy and dont pull on the ears, giving even more comfort for long listening sessions.

The driver config consists of one 9.2mm LSR dynamic drivers and three BA drivers consisting of 2 types of Sonion BA drivers, all being tuned with a 3 way crossover.

The cable is a nice silky silver looking cable that matches the shells very nicely. The review unit is terminated with a 3.5mm single ended connector at the source end.
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As is standard from Elysian, iem end is connected with the Pentaconn Ear connectors.

Driveability and Sound

The Pilgrim is fairly easy to drive inspite of the number and type of drivers. The sound is quite balanced, which should play well with a variety of genres.

Bass - The iems are not for bassheads and the bass is more about a relaxed presentation. As a result, there is no bleed of the bass in any way.
Mids - The iems keep the mids right in the middle, without any recessed presentation. Even harsh vocals are handled like a champ
Treble - While the iems are not for trebleheads, there is good amount of extension and detail retrieval, going with the overall signature of balance.
Stage - The stage extends around the ears and is quite wide with average height

The Pilgrim offers a very low cost of entry into the Elysian's range of iems. The iems are tuned for balance and play well with a variety of genre without fatigue even after hours.


Elysian Pilgrim - The Mid-fi king?
Pros: *Excellent technical performance (present each and every micro and macro details) (top of the class instrumental separation and layring)
*Sturdy build quality
*Excellent bass quality and dynamics
*Very refined and detailed treble
Cons: *Pentacon connector
*Non-modular cable
*Stuby nozzle with shallower fit.
*Spinfits are not the best pairing for this iem
Elysian has released its first iem in the 400 dollar midfi segment. This is a very competitive segment. Will Elysian manage to dethrone other iems in this segment or will it get dethroned, let's find out in this review.

I want to thank Hifigo for arranging the review tour of this iem in my country, here is the non-affiliate link https://hifigo.com/products/elysian-acoustic-labs-pilgrim

Design, Fit and Accessories Package

The unboxing experience is very good and premium. The accessories provided in the box are spinfit cp100 ear tips, 3.5mm or 4.4mm non-modular cable and a leather case. The spinfits provided are not a good pairing for the iem, I will talk more about this in the sound segment. The cable provided is good but not great. For this price cable is non-modular and for the same price some other iems come with a better cable, for example - Tangzu Nezha. The iem is made out of 304 stainless steel material and it feels very robust and sturdy. This is one of the best-built iem in its price category. The iem features a pentacon connector to connect cable and this is also a con, as most of the people who will buy this iem will not have compatible cable and cable rolling will be an issue.
The fit of the iem is great, it has a stubby nozzle that offers a shallower fit which will be a non-issue for anyone. The isolation is good enough but worse than iems that provide deeper fir.

Frequency Response


Before talking about sound I want to touch on the spinfits provided in the package, these are not the best pairing for the pilgrim. I recommend you tip roll to get the most out of these iems. The spinfits make the bass lose its power and texture to my ears so I used azla sednaearfit max tips and divinus velvet eartips for my sound analysis.


Elysian, instead of using a more popular 2-DD setup, they are using a 9.2mm LSR Dynamic driver. And oh boy! It is a potent performer. The bass profile is sub-bass over midbass with a smooth glide into the mids. The sub-bass is very well extended. It is rumbly and well-textured. The mid-bass thump and slam are also very impressive, is it for bass heads or those who prefer more mid-bass? No. But still the the quality of the bass present is just awesome. This is one of the bass performance you can find in this price range. I am very much impressed by Pilgrim’s bass performance.


The pilgrim’s mid-range gives it the elysian house sound. It is forward and very revealing. The frequencies between 1k to 2.9k are slightly boosted, which pushes the vocals forward in the mix, some people may also find it a bit unnatural, but I don’t mind it that much. Female vocals shine on this iem, they feel very open and extended. Male vocals are also good, they have enough heft and body to sound natural. I have no issues with the midrange on the pilgrim.


The treble adds to the energetic nature of the iem. It is for sure on the brighter side but it never crosses the line of sibilance for me. The treble is very revealing and extracts every micro nuance from the tracks. The air region is not overly boosted like other iems in the price range it is present where it should be. Overall, all I can say, pilgrim’s treble has that special sauce that may take many audiophiles by surprise.

Technical Performance

The technical performance is the most impressive thing about the iem. The detail retrieval is top of its class and may rival the iems in higher price categories. The detail retrieval is excellent, both macro and micro details are well presented by pilgrim. The stage is also very wide with excellent instrument separation and layering.


Elysian has released an excellent contender in 400 dollar segment. Currently, this is my favorite iem in this price range. For many audiophiles, this can be a great option. Overall I can highly recommend this iem to all people who want a slightly different and forward sound signature.
Looks like the midrange is going to be my favourite thing.


Headphoneus Supremus
A Pilgrimage into sound
Pros: + Great performance x cost ratio
+ Very comprehensive unboxing and accessory pack
+ Very classy design
+ Comfortable shape (with the right tips)
+ U-shape sound signature done right
Cons: + It may sound a bit flat mids for some

These IEMs were sent to me by @EffectAudio and @JordonEA for my honest opinion. These impressions are my subjective experiences and, as always, as it was my daily driver not as I’m doing a surgery into the frequency response or sound. Your experience may vary, so always consider auditioning the gear yourself. Respect the colleagues around the forum and have fun.


Elysian Audio has made a significant impact on the audiophile community, and their latest offering, the Pilgrim, is no exception. Known for their meticulous craftsmanship and innovative tuning, Elysian has designed the Pilgrim to show to both new and experienced audiophiles what can be done at this price range (spoiler Mr. Lee did an amazing job). Embarking on a sonic pilgrimage with the Pilgrim is akin to journeying to Santiago de Compostela, seeking wisdom and enlightenment through sound.

The whole listening was done through:
  • Luxury & Precision P6 Pro Ti99 High Gain, volume 4-8
  • Spin-fit W1
  • Stock cable unless compared to others.

Design & Build Quality

The Elysian Pilgrim features an elegant design crafted from high-quality aluminium, providing lightweight durability. The bores are made from 304 stainless steel, known for its corrosion resistance, ensuring longevity while maintaining exceptional sound quality. The faceplate's ring pattern, combined with air-release apertures, adds to the aesthetic appeal and functional design, providing ventilation for the dynamic driver. But be careful that the beautiful shiny rings get scratched easily.

The Pilgrim includes a silver-plated copper cable, which contributes to its overall sound performance. Accessories include three sets of ear tips, a cleaning brush, a carrying case, and a small flannel, making it a comprehensive package.

The Pilgrim boasts a multi-hybrid driver configuration and promises a balanced yet engaging sound signature.

Technical Specifications

  • Driver Configuration: 4 drivers hybrid setup with 1 customized 9.2mm LSR dynamic driver for lows, 1 Sonion 2300 balanced armature for mids, and dual Sonion E50 balanced armature for highs.
  • System: 3-way crossover
  • Frequency Response: 10 Hz – 20 kHz
  • Sensitivity: 101 dB @ 1 kHz @ 100mV
  • Impedance: 9 Ohms @ 1 kHz

Sound Signature

The sound signature of the Elysian Pilgrim can be described as balanced with a slight U-shaped tilt. This tuning offers an extended, engaging sound that that feels natural, guiding you through a spiritual journey of auditory enlightenment during the pilgrimage.

Low-End Performance

The Pilgrim’s bass is handled by a custom 9.2mm liquid silicone rubber dynamic driver, delivering a punchy and well-controlled low end. It excels in providing a deep, textured bass that adds weight to tracks without overshadowing the mids and highs. Listening to Eminem’s “Lose Yourself” and Metallica’s “Enter Sandman,” the Pilgrim demonstrates its ability to reproduce deep bass lines with precision and impact. The sub-bass extension is impressive, giving hip-hop tracks a satisfying thump, much like the footsteps of a pilgrim on a gravel path.

Midrange Performance

The midrange is managed by a Sonion 2300 balanced armature, offering a clean and neutral presentation. The Pilgrim excels in the upper midrange, providing clarity and details to vocals and instruments. This characteristic makes it particularly well-suited for genres like Hip-hop and Classic Rock. In Lil Wayne’s “Lollipop” and Green Day’s “Burnout” vocals come through clear and full-bodied, guitars sound energetic and drums natural. The mids are neither recessed nor too forward, striking a perfect balance that maintains engagement without overshadowing other frequencies.

High-End Performance

The treble is handled by dual Sonion E50 balanced armatures, delivering a smooth and extended high end. The treble region is detailed without being harsh, making it suitable for long listening sessions. Tracks like Polyphia’s “G.O.A.T.” and Wiz Khalifa’s “Black and Yellow” is a good example Pilgrim’s ability to render high-frequency details with precision. The upper treble is airy and well-extended, providing clarity and space without fatigue, much like the clear skies and fresh air encountered on a pilgrimage.


Frequency Response

  • Bass: Deep and controlled, with a slight emphasis that adds punch and weight. The dynamic driver’s performance in the low end is impressive, providing a solid foundation that can be felt, akin to the sturdy walking stick of a pilgrim.
  • Mids: Clean and detailed, with a focus on the upper mids that enhances female vocal and string instrument presence. The balanced armature driver ensures clarity and uniqueness in the midrange, reminiscent of the insightful conversations shared along the pilgrimage route.
  • Treble: Smooth and extended, providing clarity and airiness without harshness. The dual balanced armatures deliver a refined treble response that enhances the overall sound signature, much like the serene vistas and breathtaking landscapes that greet a pilgrim.
My Random Library

Exploring how the Elysian Pilgrim fares across some random genres showing its versatility and remarkable tuning. It’s like venturing through diverse terrains and landscapes on a pilgrimage.

Hip-hop: The Pilgrim’s impactful bass and clear mids make it an excellent choice for Hip-hop. Eminem’s rapid-fire verses in "Rap God" are articulated with precision, each word crisp and clear against the punchy, engaging beats. In Lil Wayne’s “Lollipop,” the Pilgrim captures the deep, synthetic bass with remarkable control and definition. The treble remains smooth, ensuring the highs don’t become fatiguing. Wiz Khalifa’s “Black and Yellow” showcases the Pilgrim's ability to render bass lines with depth and texture, making each track an immersive experience, like the rhythmic chants of fellow pilgrims.

Heavy Metal: The aggressive nature of Metal is where the Pilgrim may lack a punch, it handles tight bass and detailed mids effortlessly. Metallica’s “Master of Puppets” is a perfect test, with the IEMs keeping up with the fast, complex arrangements, delivering a cohesive and immersive experience. The bass drums hit detailed, but doesn’t give me the aggression I expect, while the intricate guitar solos and Hetfield's vocals remain clear and distinct. In Black Sabbath’s “Paranoid,” the Pilgrim brings out the raw energy of the guitars and a rather flat Ozzy Osbourne’s vocals. All in all, I miss the “heavy” in Heavy Metal, , much like a pilgrim might miss the hustle and bustle of a busy town.


Instrumental Rock: For instrumental rock, the Pilgrim offers a balanced presentation with ample detail. Tracks from Polyphia, such as "G.O.A.T.," reveal the intricacies of guitar work with precision and clarity. The fast-paced, complex guitar riffs are delivered with such accuracy that each note stands out, even when missing the weight of the deeper notes. Similarly, Animals as Leaders' "CAFO" demonstrates the Pilgrim's ability to handle intricate, technical music. The dynamic shifts and rapid tempo changes are well absorbed and reproduced. Showing good dynamics and technicalities.

Soundtracks: The Pilgrim’s balanced sound signature makes it well-suited for soundtracks, capturing the full range of orchestral scores with finesse. Hans Zimmer’s “Time” from Inception showcases the Pilgrim's ability to handle both the deep, resonant lows and the sparkling highs, creating an immersive and emotional experience. Ludwig Göransson’s “Mandalorian Theme” presents a good soundstage with intricate layers, each instrument coming through clearly and contributing to the overall cinematic feel, but not too wide or tall. Thomas Bergersen’s “Protectors of the Earth” demonstrates the Pilgrim’s dynamic range, handling the powerful crescendos and delicate passages with equal quality. Much like the highs and lows experienced on a pilgrimage.

Rock: The Pilgrim’s balanced tuning makes it great for rock music. In tracks like Led Zeppelin’s “Stairway to Heaven,” the acoustic guitar intro is played naturally and lifelike quality. With the guitar well separated on the left side. As the track builds, the Pilgrim handles the dynamic shifts with ease, ensuring that the electric guitars, drums, and vocals all have their place within the mix with an amazing imaging. The Pilgrim’s ability to capture the energy and emotion of rock music makes it a great choice for fans of the genre.

Cable Comparisons

Effect Audio Ares S x Cadmus:
This cable is impressive for its price, boosting the weight in the mids while improving the soundstage and keeping the sound expanded and slightly W-shaped. When paired with the Pilgrim, the Ares S x Cadmus adds a richer midrange to upper bass presence, making vocals and instruments sound fuller and more engaging. The soundstage also feels more expansive, like discovering new vistas on your pilgrimage.


Effect Audio Eros S:
The Eros S increases details and technicalities without altering the sound signature. With the Pilgrim, the Eros S enhances the clarity and resolution. It’s a great option for those who want to maintain the Pilgrim’s natural sound while boosting its technical performance a bit. Like finding a clearer path on your journey. (It still sounds quite different from Pilgrim:Noir, but that is a detail for a future comparison)


Effect Audio Code 24C: This cable increases the weight in the midrange but reduces technicalities and details. Paired with the Pilgrim, the Code 24C adds a richer, more robust midrange, making genres like Hip-hop and Rock sound more impactful. However, it sacrifices some of the finer details and clarity, which might not appeal to detail-oriented listeners. Akin to walking a path that’s a bit less scenic but more grounded.


Effect Audio Code 24: Like the stock cable but on steroids, it improves all points of the sound signature adding body to it. When used with the Pilgrim, the Code 24 enhances every aspect of the sound, from the deep bass to the airy treble, providing a more refined and immersive listening experience. It’s an excellent upgrade for those who love the Pilgrim’s sound and want to elevate it further. much like finding a peaceful resting lookout along the pilgrimage route.


Effect Audio Fusion: This cable adds a natural touch to the sound but pushes the signature even more toward the higher frequencies without making it sibilant. With the Pilgrim, the Fusion cable enhances the treble, making high-frequency details more prominent and airier. It’s a suitable choice for those who appreciate a brighter sound signature while maintaining smoothness down low. Much like a clear bluesky day.


Final Stop of The Long Journey

The Elysian Pilgrim is a well-tuned IEM that can easily be and EDM for someone or a good early entry into Mr. Lee’s fine tuning sound signature. Its deep, controlled bass, slightly pushed-back mids, and smooth, extended treble make it suitable for plenty of music libraries, particularly Hip-hop and Classic Rock.

The premium build quality, comfortable fit, and basic accessory package further enhance its appeal for the price. If you’re looking for a nicely tuned U-shaped IEM, the Elysian Pilgrim is a great choice that delivers one of the best experiences you can get for this price range.

But Pilgrim really asks for an upgraded cable. And, if you want to squeeze a bit more performance without breaking the bank, you can get Ares S x Cadmus 8w or Ares S: Noir.
Eros S looks different, custom-made?
Hi @Argha , that’s the Anniversary Edition. This Pilgrim goes well wirh the Silver Eros S.


New Head-Fier
Hot sauce
Pros: + Amazing, clean and natural upper treble
+ Masterfully done low end
+ Outstanding texture and transparency
+ Details galore
+ Sublime vocals
+ Impeccable channel matching (anecdotal)
Cons: - Hot and spicey at times
- midrange weirdness
- Build
This is my first review, please be gentle.
I may be using the wrong terms and also be neglecting some topics which are usually discussed. I don't feel familiar enough with some of the terminology to really make a well-founded statement. 😅

I am uncertain why I feel compelled to review this particular IEM as my first. It's not even that I like it best among my collection, but there is something about it.. Anyways, I will try to keep completely failed at keeping this short. Personally I'm a fan of written reviews more than videos, lest it gets out of control and becomes a neverending wall of text. But I guess it helps to understand a little about my preferences to better judge if this is worth anything to you.
What I personally can't stand are peaky sound signatures. Often peaks, especially the prominent 8 kHz one, are reduced to coupler artefacts, but there are very few circumstances where I can't tell it's there when it's visible in a graph. For me it can become kind of smeared out (if not too pronounced) when changing the angle by a bit, but this rarely works, also because the IEM may just not stay at that angle or be uncomfortable then. Some are of the opinion these resonance peaks are intended, I rather suspect they are tough to get rid off as a necessary effect of occluding the ear canal. If the peaks are narrow enough, they won't contribute to percieved loudness (for me, actually put a “for me” in front of everything in my review please, because all of this is highly specific to perception, preference, ear anatomy and so on) but lead to loss of detail (probably because that part of the frequency band is dominated by one particular frequency), an in-my-head sensation, piercing ‘shattering-glass’ like percussions and also some ‘fake clarity’. In short, I won't have it. Tonality-wise, I consider myself very flexible, as long as the whole thing is consistent. To get a better picture, an excerpt of my preferences and non-preferences:

I Like a lot
  • Yanyin Moonlight (sadly don't have it)
  • SoundRhyme SR5
  • ISN Neo 5
  • Letshuoer Galileo
  • Yanyin Canon II
  • Aful MagicOne
  • Hisenior T4
  • Moondrop SSR/SSP
  • Truthear Zero (Blue)
  • Moondrop Space Travel
  • KZ D-Fi
  • Penon Fan 2

  • Ziigaat Cinno (interesting take at a different kind of tuning)
  • Kiwi Ears Quintet (peaky upper treble, but has its charms otherwise)
  • Simgot EM6L (high potential but simply too much treble for me)

Cannot listen without EQ (which I usually don't use)
  • Truthear Nova (smooth FR, but my definition of lean with too much sub-bass)
  • Letshuoer S12 Pro (massive 6 - 8kHz peak ruining everything for me)
  • Truthear Hexa (treble peak + treble peak followed by grainy upper-treble)

  • I bought this with my own money.
  • My field of work contrasts with me commenting on cable synergies and source pairings other than advising you to have a low output-impedance source for that low impedance IEM, should you get one and want the stock tuning to be unaltered. Assuming impedance is not uniform, which I suppose but don’t actually know.

Hardware notes
I won't go into great detail about the unpacking experience and accessories. Also in a completely unorthodox fashion, I will pass on including product pictures. For one, there are already so many out there and I can't contribute anything new. For another, I'm not really good at this 😉.
As you probably already know, you get a cable, three sizes of Spinfit (supposedly CP100) eartips, a case and some cleaning tools.
What irritated me here was that the ear hooks of my cable were deformed to an opening angle of roughly 30°, tapering to a point. Now, the Spinfit tips do provide a certain flexibility, but with that earhook shape, the IEMs are instantly lifted out of my ear. I know you can mold them with hot air and this is really nitpicking, but nevertheless I was a little disappointed.

Next thing is the PE connector feels sufficiently tight on the left side, while it's pretty loose by comparison on the right and doesn't snap into place with that satisfying click. Again, nitpicking, I know. And it doesn't fall off, so it's alright. Machining looks good, but somehow not as premium as I expected. I can't put my finger on why exactly. Maybe I'm spoiled by artful resin shells? Who knows, and honestly, I don’t care about that part.

Then the tips. Now, I know Spinfit tips are very well regarded and not exactly cheap when acquired separately. But the fact that I was afraid of ripping off the (non-unibody) nozzle while putting them on made me question whether it might not have been a good idea to make the package more consistent with better fitting ones. Don't get me wrong, I'm glad they didn't, I like them Spinfits! It just feels a little like an incompatible accessory at first.

Ok, almost done with nitpicking, but I have to get this last one out, sorry. The nozzle filters. Really? Not that long ago there was a discussion in the Discovery thread on why KZ had those mesh filters inside, claiming they did the tuning via crossover, and no protection above. I'd like to ask the same question here. Pretty much all of my other sound-tubed IEMs come with either no termiating filter or a metal grille. One can be of opposing opinions on no filter, but a metal grille would be so much easier to clean than this black mesh. Even worse if it has a tuning effect (which I suspect given the density). At least I didn't find any spares in the package and while I try my best at keeping my IEMs super clean, I don't like the idea that part of this great tuning is based on something so exposed and easily corrupted.
To conclude this with a positive remark, the channel matching on my set is insanely good. There is a very localized < 1 dB difference somewhere in the upper mids, but apart from that, left and right look virtually identical! Very positive result for a hybrid in my book.

I have to admit, I rarely, if ever, had issues with fit. Some will stay in my ears better than others, some I have to wear at odd angles, sure. But I have none in my collection that I would call ‘uncomfortable’, or where I struggle with seal or nozzle size. That said, I find these to be on the better side. After a little surgery on the crooked earhooks, they stay in place very well. I think these are lightweight for a metal shell - not comparable to e.g. the original Starfields that would shift quite a bit in my ears due to their weight.


Now that is some gourmet Bass! Nothing overdone, nothing missing. I’m personally more of a mid bass person, especially when it comes to electronic music. Never liked too much sub bass for that, as many obviously do, as I quickly get nauseated by too much rumble. But _if_ you create a sub bass focused tuning, this is the way. I can’t really say I feel that this driver reaches any lower than others but the way the bass is implemented here sure feels highly tactile, accurate and fast. It operates in its own space but doesn’t feel detached from the rest as it often does with a pronounced bass tuck. It’s emphasized for sure, but tastefully so! If the Nova for instance was too much for you, this is completely different. Maybe slightly similar to the Quintet, but in much better harmony with the rest. Authority yes, dominance no - it is atmospherical and clean without being dry. I haven’t had any instance where it felt out of place and compared to many other IEMs, I caught myself looking forward to the next bass punch. 😇

Mids / Treble
The most controversial chapter for me. In plain terms, mids are too forward for my liking. At least that is one of the first things that came to mind. On more specific terms, some instruments/sounds, for instance electric guitars, synths and claps are quite a bit louder than I anticipate them to be to the point of aggressiveness. Don't get me wrong, everything is still well resolved at that point, just unexpected in loudness given the rest of the spectrum. The weird thing is, swelling sounds crossing from the lows towards pinna gain region have a foreboding of getting too loud - at least for songs I know, I experience the sensation of wanting to “shut my ears” or quickly lower volume due to the expectation of something too intense coming up - only to then progress just fine. I can't say I have this experience with other gear, at least not on this level. Getting technical, I suppose this effect is due to a sudden rise in loudness at around 1 kHz that abruptly drops off after 2.5 kHz. I assume this may hit the perfect balance for some, for me it is definitely not how I am used to hearing things.
Moving up the spectrum, there is another subsequent slight emphasis somewhere between 4-5 kHz and one more somewhere around 8. To be honest, I'm not sure about my thoughts here. I may very well make wrong assumptions based on the fact that I expect this product to be expertly tuned coming from such a brand. Also there is a short video backstory to it and it is highly regarded in general. Willing or not, this will influence how I interpret things. But anyway, somehow I am convinced these are not artefacts Elysian couldn't get rid off or didn't want to care about, but rather deliberately placed accents. And listening to music they do not result in any grain or grizzle-di-sizzle, but lend a beautiful sheen to sounds emanating from those regions, transporting detail and emotion.
And that is where the hot sauce comes in. It's not like everything sounds super smooth, just like eating hot food is not super comfortable. Also, some things you just don't want hot sauce on. But when it fits the dish, it can enhance the experience of flavors and make the whole meal so much more satisfying. There is a downside, though. Just like too much hot sauce can ruin otherwise tasty food, these emphases can get overwhelming with music that responds to all of them at the same time. This goes to the extreme of a collapsing sound stage when opting for instance for some old school punk rock or really complex and technical electronic music. All sounds great and spacious, I feel like I can grab individual shimmering notes out of the air, until too many different sounds enter the stage and the soup gets too hot - to stick with the slightly forced food comparison. 😉
But I should put this into perspective: This is some really highlevel critique. It is still producing exciting, high quality sound in the described instances that is great to listen to, but some of the magic gets lost and I have to lower volume quite a bit to get through these passages.

Upper treble / air
Pure. Bliss. I think this region deserves extra mention, because it is so masterfully sculpted. Nothing stands out, nothing gets left behind. I am _very_ complicated with regard to poorly implemented upper treble, all sorts of things happen there and it is notoriously hard to resolve in measurements. So you’re in for surprises more often than not when you can't demo gear beforehand, which I usually can't. The surprise here is the most welcome one. I can hear things unheard before, up to the highest octaves and what I hear is super smooth with natural decay and not the slightest bit of piercing quality. No peaks, no glare, just beautiful air.

I am honestly puzzled on how to categorize this tuning. Not that it is necessary, but I’ve heard nothing quite like it. Does it strive to be neutral? In parts maybe, but they way the midrange and treble are at times thrown at me, I don't think that could have been the goal. It just doesn't sound right (in terms of neutrality) there to me. Rather is the Pilgrim confidently presenting some elements of the music to me in a way I did not know I would like to hear it before. On occasion I would like it to back down with the eletric guitar forwardness or not have electronic percussions right in my face. But I just can't stop going over my library just to find out, how this perspective makes my favorite songs turn out. And then there's this heavenly upper treble and satisfying bass. Also, with the right music, the soundscape is immensely spacious, but due to the accents in mids/treble still intimate and emotional. Vocals are mostly superb and are well separated from the mix. All in all, I couldn't put them down ever since I got them. Truly addictive. :)

Direct Contenders
For me, the direct contender is the Yanyin Canon II. This IEM does so many things right, the midrange and treble are a joy, the bass is similarly well controlled and appropriate, but the shelf starts way earlier in the mid bass. It holds its own magic and I would prefer it any day for electronic music. But even if this wins in the mids/treble and the bass is kind of a draw, it can't compete in the upper treble. It's not even a fair fight. So I have a hard time with acoustic music, let alone metal on the Canon II. Here, the Pilgrim is more versatile.

Would I recommend it?
Not that I imagine anyone will care much, as this is my first review. Still, the answer would be:
If this is not supposed to be your only set and you like a swing at a non bass heavy, slightly colored, somewhat bright sound signature that doesn’t do every track perfect, but worst case still good and excels at many others, then yes. For my _personal taste_, there are better all-rounders at or below this price point - for me the Hisenior T4 is one such - but they won't offer you the magnificence of the Pilgrim in its best moments.

What music would I choose to make this show off
I'd sure go with something not too busy, like Mark Knopfler - Brothers in Arms (Live) - absolutely brought tears to my eyes - or some plain electronic music from artists such as Recondite or Dominik Eulberg.

What music would I choose to make this feel like a mediocre choice
Pretty much anything from the early albums of the Arctic Monkeys.

If you've made it to here, thanks a lot for reading :)
Fantastic review! Well done!
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Thank you very much, that means a lot! :relaxed:
The comparison was much needed


100+ Head-Fier
Elysian Pilgrim - A Takeover of uncharted territory?
Pros: Fit is comfortable and relatively easy
Shell size is on the small-medium size
Fantastic Unboxing experience
Beautifully different design, it’s very distinctive
The included cable and carry case are very well-made
Bass is a step above others in it’s class
Bass texture, impact, and depth are all very satisfying
Mids are clean, clear, and open
Treble has great extension
The sound stage while not the widest, is definitely spacious
Resolution and detail retrieval are befitting of the price bracket
Cons: The reflective finish on the faceplate is incredibly scratch-prone
The nozzle/stem is on the shorter side, which may cause issues with some users
Pentacon connectors, your 2 pin cables are useless with this set!
Tuning is a bit on the safe side
I would like a little more treble zing after 10k (Subjective)
Dynamics are slightly lacking
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Thank you very much to HiFiGO for making the tour of the Elysian Pilgrim happen and thank you to my bud Neil for welcoming me into the HiFiGo US tour group just a few weeks ago. The process has been super smooth up to this point. HiFiGO nor Elysian haven’t asked me to say anything in particular regarding the Pilgrim, all of these thoughts and opinions are my own.

I’m almost reluctant to write this article because once I finish it and post it, I have to send the Pilgrims back on their journey after their quick pit stop here on my desk and everywhere else, quite frankly. I’ve brought the Pilgrim with me everywhere these past few days, at first to prepare for this review, but then eventually just to enjoy the sweet melodies these things sing to me. Spoiler alert; I wouldn’t mind buying a pair at full retail.

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Test tracks

- Give Life Back to Music - daft punk - Overall clarity
- Infinity Repeating - daft punk - Lower mids control
- Voyager - daft punk - Bass line clarity/busy track layering
- Overnight - Parcels - mid bass punch
- Tieduprightnow - Parcels - bass line/sibilance test
- Everyroad -Parcels - Imaging/Sub bass @ 7 minute mark
- Daytime - Lunar Vacation - Staging/female vocals w/ heavy bass
- Days - No Vacation - Vibe test/treble energy
- Fruiting Body - Goon - Sub bass
- Wavy Maze - Goon - Mid bass
- Together - Maggie Rodgers - Female Vocals
- Slide Tackle - Japanese Breakfast - Sibilance test/consonants harshness
- Decode - Paramore - Vibe test/stage depth
- Vinta - Crumb - Stage depth/layering
- Kim’s Caravan - Courtney Barnett - Female Vocals/resolution test
- Small Poppies - Courtney Barnett - Distorted Guitar
- Lifelong Song - Men I Trust - Sub/mid bass texture
- One and Only - Adele - Female Vocals/consonants harshness test
- Waves - Wild Painting - Overall Enjoyment and stage depth/width/Bass guitar speed
- Not the One - Highnoon - Female Vocals
- Cowboy Killer - Varsity - Layering
- Alone in My Principles - Varsity - Distorted female vocals
- Summer Madness - Kool & The Gang - Treble Harshness
- They Are Growing - Renata Zeiguer - Mid bass impact


- Apple Music Streaming Hi-Res Lossless when available
- Topping D10s/Earmen ST-Amp stack
- Muse HiFi M4
- Fosi DS2
- FiiO BTR7 BT

I’ll be doing most of my impressions written below using the ST-Amp considering that is the most neutral amp I own currently. The Muse M4 has a very distinctive bass boost which is highly enjoyable, but not accurate to the IEM I’m listening to.


The Elysian Pilgrims were a slow burn for me - At first, I wasn’t that impressed with their presentation, I found it to be something not special or standout and I won’t lie, I was expecting something that was going to be special considering the brand name. Elysian. Fun fact; the first time I heard the Annihilator 2023 at CanJam 2023 I fell in love so hard I couldn’t get them out of my head for an entire year up until I got to the next CanJam in 2024. In short, the Elysian Pilgrim has an extremely enjoyable bass replay, with a deep and textured impact that clearly stands out from the rest of the crowd at or around this price point. Even up to more expensive sets I’ve heard I’d say that, even though Elysian may have not been going for this, the bass is definitely a stand-out on this set. It’s addictive and highly refined. The mids are clean, clear, and spacious allowing for an enjoyable replay, albeit, maybe a little on the safe side. The same goes for the treble, there’s plenty of extension here for lots of micro details to be easily experienced, but I would have liked a few more risks to be taken here to allow the Pilgrim to stand out from the pack. Regardless, I think that the Pilgrim is a fine example of what Lee and the team over at Elysian can do by putting some work into something to make a statement. The under-Kilobuck sector has a new player in town…

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If you’d like to purchase the Elysian Pilgrim, please follow this unaffiliated link to HiFiGo to order your pair!

HiFiGo - https://hifigo.com/products/elysian-acoustic-labs-pilgrim?variant=44936758886639

AliExpress - https://shorturl.at/f271

Amazon US - https://shorturl.at/2qenE

And if you’d like to read up on more of the different technologies used in the Pilgrim, check out the Elysian website.


Fitment note; I had no issues with the fit of the Pilgrim. I typically do have issues with shorter stem IEMs, but there’s something about the shape of the Pilgrims that made fit very very easy. I landed on the Dunu S&S tips as my go-to choice and found fantastic sonics. No pain or pressure build-up was felt.


As I said in my TLDR section above, the Bass on the Pilgrim, in my opinion, is a standout. Reading up on what Elysian actually did for their DD in this set really puts it into perspective. What they’ve done here, according to their site, is create a custom 9.2mm Liquid Silicon Rubber (LSR) DD that’s meant to allow for faster transients but still achieve a deeper, harder-hitting bass and I have to commend them here because before reading up on what kind of DD was inside this thing, I heard and felt that deep bass their talking about. On Songs like Give Life Back To Music by daft punk, or Overnight by the Parcels, the mid-bass kicks are overly satisfying. The baselines are exceedingly groovy and very fast enough to never ever get muddy or cause any overlap with the rest of the frequencies. The depth of the bass on display here is what really impressed me - every kick and thump going on has tons of texture and sounds like it’s punching you right in the center of your face with just enough power. I think in terms of mid-bass here, it’s tuned nearly perfectly to match my library. The sub-bass on the other hand is quite nice, but I definitely need some more here. On songs like Everyroad by the Parcels, it’s a nice rumble for sure, but it’s not knocking my socks off either. The biggest test for me when it comes to sub-bass is on the song Fruiting Body by Goon - Hauntingly beautiful. If you’ve read any of my other reviews, you know just how much I love this song. The Real test for an IEM, is when that Chorus comes in, am I going to feel absolutely ROCKED by that sub-bass rumble behind those beautiful vocals? On the Pilgrim…. mmm no, it just missed the mark for me on that song personally. Otherwise, this bass performance is like a 7.5/10, which may sound low but I’m telling you, that’s high considering what I’ve heard despite price talk. It’s a very solid bass and out of all the sets I’ve heard around this price, it’s up there among the best considering its unique way of presenting.


The mids on the Pilgrim are great, they’re open, clear, and fairly clean without ever being sibilant or harsh on any of my tracks. I believe the mids have the right amount of energy relative to the rest of the frequency range and I can confidently say, they’re very enjoyable. Female vocals, which make up 99% of my library come across as slightly forward and energetic but not the smoothest or most textured I’ve heard. Days By No Vacation is wonderful as always, the guitars and Violins that come in towards the ending part of the song are lovely and very resolute. The lead vocalist has a beautiful tone and timbre to her voice, albeit not the most texture and natural I’ve heard, it’s still very nicely rendered. Waves by Wild Painting has lovely depth to the presentation, with the vocals coming right from the center of the image with sufficient depth to almost create the illusion of being in the room with her. My issue is the slight lack of refinement somewhere, maybe around 5k-6k where it gets a little bit grainy when the vocals are pushed up a touch. I know it sounds like a small quibble, but it is noticeable to my ears and it took me out of the music a few times during my listening.


Here’s where my biggest issue with the Pilgrim lies; the treble just isn't jumping out at me at all. It is very well extended, I won’t sit here, lie, and say it isn’t, but it's not grabbing me by the soul and saying “Hey, this is the Elysian Pilgrim, little brother to the Anni, the IEM with some of the best treble on the market, period” - I guess I was expecting too much. I know we’re talking BAs to ESTs, $400 to $3000, entry-level to flagship, but I did hope Elysian would have taken their experience and expertise with the Anni’s treble and at least try to put a few little magical touches in with the Pilgrim’s treble, but nah, it’s not here. Days by No Vacation, a song that relies heavily on an airy treble to sound its best replays wonderfully, don’t get me wrong, but the sound isn’t enveloping like I expected it to be considering the Pilgrim is marketed as a brighter IEM. The lovely cymbals on Give Life Back To Music ain’t so lovely on the Pilgrim - I expect them to be overly glittery, much like the robots intended, really exciting and standing out driving the music forward. But instead, on the Pilgrim they’re there, I can most definitely hear them, but that’s about it. The Airy opening of Decode by Paramore isn’t as airy as I anticipated either… Maybe by now, you can tell there’s a theme here. All in all, the treble is just fine - a bit underwhelming, but fine. I’d like a bit more air to make things sparkle and shimmer. The treble is at least very refined, I will say. You won't find any nasty peaks or weird timbre anywhere here, it's a very smooth and pleasant experience, I didn't want to make it seem like it was all negative! The treble allows the listener to easily sit back and just enjoy the music with plenty of micro details to get lost in. Trust me, I'm a sicko who loves some extra treble spice, so if you're a person who likes a well-done, laid-back treble experience that's sufficiently bright across the spectrum, pretty evenly, then this is going to be a fantastic listening experience.

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The Pilgrim is a very solid B grade, maybe even B+ on all of the technicalities here. Imaging doesn’t seem particularly special, but it also isn’t blurry and inaccurate. Staging feels wide and spacious, maybe lacking a touch on depth and height, but at this price range, I’m not really expecting that. Resolution and detail retrieval aren’t blowing my socks off, but it is super solid and absolutely befitting of the price range here. Dynamics are very important to me as well, and the Pilgrim doesn’t do the greatest job here with a mostly flat-ish presentation above 3k where the peaks aren’t really adding to the experience in a positive way, but contribute to that slight grainy nature. Not a deal breaker at all, but it’s there. Most importantly, timbre and tonality are absolutely spot on. Jazz sounds fantastic on the Pilgrim and even though I don’t have any jazz tracks on my test playlist, I definitely wanted to give that a shout-out.

Source Differences

The Pilgrim does react to different sources for sure, and that’s why I wanted to be very careful during my testing. On the ST-Amp, the Pilgrim sounds balanced and slightly on the warmer side. On the Muse M4 the bass is kicked up a notch with the mids and treble taking an even further back seat (FYI, this was my favorite playback). The BTR7 unfortunately just didn’t do it for me, the dynamics completely vanished and the Pilgrims sounded flat. The Fosi DS2, a little powerhouse of a dongle, did a surprisingly fantastic job engagingly presenting the Pilgrims. In fact, the DS2 is a little bit on the brighter side as far as dongles go (to my ears at least), so It was able to create some nice contrast between the bass, mids, and highs… I quite liked it. Bass did take a bit of a hit though, it wasn’t as deep as I got so accustomed to coming out of the Muse M4. Overall, my favorite by far was out of the Muse M4 using a wired connection. Punchy, fast bass with smooth vocals and treble.


So, here we are. The end of my review. So what do I think of the Pilgrims? Well, I’m a bit torn if I’m honest. On one hand I’ve thoroughly enjoyed my short time with them, enjoying them on a daily basis did not feel like a chore in the slightest and I couldn’t wait to pick them up again to have another listen. They absolutely have an addicting factor to them and I think it’s just the sum of the entire package. They’re comfortable, the cable isn’t cumbersome to deal with, the sound is impactful with deep mid-bass and smooth vocals and treble with plenty of details to go around in an open and spacious stage. Overall, I would buy the Pilgrim for the full asking price, no doubt about it. I truly think they’re worth it for me personally. But beware, if you’re looking for something that stands out from the crowd in more ways than one, you might want to look somewhere else.

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I hope you got something out of this and had an enjoyable read! Cheers, till next time.
Wow, these photos are impeccable. Fantastic write up - thanks for sharing!
Well-versed review man. Love your photographs as well.
Thank you, everyone and thanks for the front page!

d m41n man

100+ Head-Fier
Elysian Pilgrim - The Right Start to the Path of Enlightenment
Pros: • Bright U-shaped to balanced signature that is not peaky and has a smooth, refined yet incisive treble
• Tuning and timbre that are levels above your chi-fi norm
• Has that addictive, hard-to-put-down factor
• Classy, shiny looks and build
• Lightweight, comfy fit
• Insightful listen
• Technicalities that punch its way above its price-tier
Cons: • Other than the non-modular cable, spinfit CP100 and bare accessories - None
• Still possibly just a tad bit borderline sharp for the treble sensitive and dark tonality lovers

All the way from Malaysia, Elysian Acoustics Labs has burst into the IEM audiophile scene as 'the' dream endgame set. Since the release of the Annihilator, the X, and its latest 2023 rendition - it has been the default pick for most who could actually afford and wanted a top-tier tuned endgame set. They have made waves with another hit in the Diva which is also one of the summits at the time for vocal lovers and a darling for most reviewers. With this, it made me wonder if there will be a chance of a top-tier tuned Elysian set at a somewhat affordable price. Worry no more as the Pilgrim has arrived, with the prime focus of starting an IEM audiophile's journey right on to the right path and far midway onto someone would call kilobuck level. Let's take a look at this 'budget' segment wonder for Elysian though even at the start of this writeup, outright I'm telling you unless you favor warm-dark signatures and is the slightest treble-sensitive - this set is a banger and a must-try. The Pilgrim just sets the bar really high for products within and above its pricepoint.



Packaging and Inclusions
The Pilgrim comes in a white squarish box that features a coupe of segments inside to uncover the IEM itself. It comes with a nice-looking silvery cable which seem well made. Coming in with a bare minumum Spinfit CP100 eartips in 3 sizes as well as a white-colored faux leather flip top case. I will immediately recommend a tip roll to your favorite eartip as the Spinfit does not seem to be the best match at least for me. Throughout my listening session and even until now, it's the Divinus Velvets that gave me its best matching, with the timbre and extensions coming out resonating lively and natural.



The Pilgrim out-of-the-box is a beautiful looking set, with a mix of shiny and matte aluminum to highlight its well thought of design. Vents are present as well as being lightweight yet comfy. It has a configuration of 1 DD + 3 Sonion BAs in a 3-way crossover setup with the dynamic driver handling the lows, a BA for mids and dual BAs for the highs.


Sound and Comparisons
The Pilgrim right out of the gate will impress you upon first listen (the start of a journey if you will) and will make it difficult for you to put it down. The bass is oh so punchy with just enough rumble but what's so good about it is having that impact and slam which you rarely find in most chi-fi sets (because of their subbass focus) but never overbearing. The mids have the right amount of body, being lush and very natural-sounding. It sounds that it could be a bright U-shape tilt going to a balanced set with no specific frequency outshining the other yet what makes it so remarkable is how it handles treble and how it's tuned in a way that is both pleasant, smooth, but gives cymbals the right and correct crispness and sparkles. Airy and well-extended with just an adequate amount of shimmer. All these, delicately balanced and tuned in a way Elysian can do. It reminded me of another Elysian set in collaboration with Effect Audio which is the Gaea. Both are energetic, lively, and very detailed yet the Pilgrim managed to tame the peaks which the Gaea have, in exchange for minor difference in resolution. It managed to tiptoe and balance on a tightrope how everything came along to create this product. Just be a tad mindful though that it is somehow sensitive to sources and impedance matching, producing the best match for me with the Sony ZX707 while losing some dynamics and liveliness on a AK Kann Alpha. It is a very technical set as well, being just a level below the best kilobuck sets in terms of detail retrieval, imaging and resolution. Soundstage though is above-average in width and depth but immediately gives you pinpoint placement of instruments, layering, and naturalness of timbre. Again, it's a fine exhibition on how to cross the fine line of having both musicality and tech, which just makes you listen to your music for long. Guitar plucks, strings vibration and cymbal shimmers are a joy to behold. Piano and violins sound lovely while vocals for both male and female are wonderfully handled with the utmost of care. Classical and acoustic tracks felt live and grand while mainstream and pop tracks are full of energy and impact. Compared to one of it's similar priced breathren the 7hz Aurora - I'm just going to outright say the Pilgrim is the safer, more well-rounded pick. Almost unanimous unless you would favor the 7hz Aurora's implementation of detail retrieval of its boosted upper mids and borderline shout. The Pilgrim just sounded more correct and inviting.



I won't feel bad for on-the-spot suggesting to just go out and buy the Elysian Pilgrim already. At a price of $399, it has that unique tuning that most sets with $500 can't even touch upon. It is definitely a must-try. In gaming terminology wherein you will just say 'one more game' until you lose track of time - the Elysian Pilgrim will keep you going and saying 'one more track'. To me, it is that good and I'm just not the type of being a hype guy - it's the feeling of blind buying then getting rewarded by sound that shouldn't be priced this low.

IEM set has been listened via the Sony ZX-707, AK Kann Alpha, AK SR25 II, Questyle M15 and Cayin RU7 separately using the Divinus Velvets which are my choice as best match for this over the course of multiple genres across FLACs (16bit&24bit) and streaming (Tidal). The Elysian Pilgrim is available in HiFiGo for $399 - https://hifigo.com/products/elysian-acoustic-labs-pilgrim



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Is this better than the flagship?
d m41n man
d m41n man
@Jacobal You mean the Annihilator? Oh no, but it does share some similarities in signature, though more with the Gaea. But for its price, it's almost a no-brainer for its value soundwise and technicalities. I do recommend to use other eartips like the DIVINUS Velvets to smoothen the treble.


New Head-Fier
Looks Like This One Hit The Mark! The Elysian Acoustics Lab Pilgrim
Pros: 1. Exceptionally well-tuned response
2. Lively and refined treble
3. Captivating and detailed mid-range
4. Detailed and pounding bass
5. Exceptional technicalities
Cons: 1. None personally, except the fact some people might find it sounding bright

Review Of The Elysian Acoustics Lab Pilgrim



Elysian Acoustics Lab is a Malaysian firm that specializes in producing high-end and premium in-ear monitors that are well-received by audiophiles all over the world. The firm was founded in 2015 by mechanical engineer Lee Quan Min and began offering re-shelling services. When Lee believed he had perfected his talents, he chose to work on a completely self-crafted IEM with his own distinct house sound that would set him apart from the crowd. Lee developed his revolutionary Dive Pass system in 2019 after learning about the foster driver. Aside from Gaea, the company's catalogue includes three IEMs: Annihilator 2023, Diva, and Pilgrim. The Annihilator 2023 is their flagship model, which propelled Elysian into the spotlight. The Diva also earned a lot of attention from audiophiles and became one of the most popular. Pilgrim is their most current entry-level product, and I was lucky to receive it for review. However, before starting, I want to clarify a few concerns.



*Since this unit tour was organised by the lovely people at HiFiGo, I am grateful to them. And as I've said in all of my evaluations, the same is true for this one: all of the concepts I've expressed below are entirely my own, original ideas that haven't been influenced by anyone else. If interested, go to this link.
*I am not associated with the connection, and I receive no financial assistance from anyone.
*For the remainder of the review, I will refer to these IEMs as “Pilgrim.”
*I am using different Ear-tips for convenience and better versatility.
*Finally, I will only evaluate the Pilgrim based on their performance, even though I will explain how it feels and seems physically and aesthetically.
*For source I relied on the Sony WM1A and Apple Dongle for my review.



Pilgrim has a multi-hybrid driver configuration comprised of three Sonion balanced armatures (1x 2300 for mids and 2x E50 for highs) and a single 9.2mm liquid silicone rubber dynamic driver connected via a three-way crossover. The shells are constructed of stainless steel, and the craftsmanship is exceptional; the surface is smooth to the touch, and the body is not overly large, however, the nozzle length may be shorter for some. The faceplate features a ring pattern with air-release apertures that are integrated into the design of the ring, which is stunning; the Elysian logo is in the centre of the rings. When it came to fit and comfort, any eartips provided an excellent isolated seal, and I had no trouble listening to them for extended periods of time. They are lightweight, yet the construction is sturdy and durable. The cable that comes with the Pilgrim is silver-plated copper with pentaconn connectors on one end and a 3.5mm or 4.4mm straight termination jack on the other. The additional accessories include three sets of ear tips, a cleaning brush, a carrying box, and a small flannel. According to the technical specs, the impedance is 9 Ohms and the sensitivity is 101dB. The frequency response spans 10 Hz to 20 kHz.



As I already stated, Pilgrim is the first Elysian Acoustic IEM I have reviewed but a tuning like this is not my first. To be honest, I believe this IEM is underpriced for what it offers; it should have been 700-800 USD easily. The Pilgrim explains what it means to have a neutral sound with a sub-bass boost. When I initially saw the teasers and photographs unveiling the pilgrim, I assumed it was another 1000 USD IEM from Elysian, but when I found out it was less than USD 400, I was astounded. The Pilgrim delivers a refined and well-resolved sound that can never go wrong for anyone, period. The quality and quantity are nearly desirable, with excellent control over tuning and drivers. I'm not sure what more the Pilgrim needs to do, as the notes sound so rich and full, but they sound incredibly smooth and detailed. It's like having a pocketable orchestra in my palms. When it comes to comparison amongst its peers like Hype 4, Blessing 3 or the recently released Aurora, I have never heard such a cohesive and sophisticated sound delivery out of any other IEM except the Pilgrim, I’ll be honest I might not fully compare any other IEM around this price range as I do not currently have them and It doesn't justify my evaluation based on what I “remember” but I will be directly comparing it to 7hz Aurora. Let's go further into the sound to learn more about it.



The overall tuning is well tuned I have no doubt about it, especially the treble region which sounds rich and refined in every way possible, oozing out coherent and detailed sound with great extension and airier response. One may even find it lively and smooth-sounding. As mentioned above, the extension is great with an airy presentation in the upper treble as the vocals and the instruments stretch far and wide with enough space to sound vibrant and lively without distorting or introducing any offensive characteristics. The lower treble is even more energised and livelier sounding, with vocals and instruments becoming vibrant yet well-controlled so as to not sound sibilant or peaky also maintaining the proper note weight to sound tonally pleasant. The definition and refinement in the notes are noticeable with a realistic aspect to the full response of the treble region. Tracks like Grand Escape by RADWIMPS establish my points firmly, the vocal sounds natural and with good note-weight, and the dynamic quality of the notes allows the vocals to sound flexible and very realistic, the same is felt with the piano notes which comes across full sounding where micro nuances are effortlessly surfaced and the listener can easily grasp and find the overall sound captivating. When it comes to the point where the background vocals perform, the distinction and resolution of the notes are so precise whether it is vocals or instruments that even during such a busy part each and every part is close and clear sounding. When compared to the likes of Aurora, the response is well-refined and cohesive which brings a more desirable tuning, even though the details and crisp quality of the notes are better on the Aurora, the Pilgrim doesn’t sound sharp or edgy like the Aurora. Therefore the overall presentation of the treble region is lively, detailed and airy sounding.

Mid Range

Coming to the mid-range, I think I have never heard such sweet and melodious-sounding vocals which I find are very articulated and tonally accurate with a very expressive instrumental presentation that colludes and produces a harmonious sound. The fact that the notes don’t sound lean or sharp is surprisingly unknown to me, maybe the synergy across the upper frequencies is nicely tamed to make it sound and resolved that it makes the overall response sound tonally accurate. The upper mid-range resonates with the same energy as the lower treble where the cohesive response doesn’t allow any uneven sounds to even exist, thus clearly maintaining the tonality and sound as natural as it can be. The vocals and the instruments sound forward, fuller and rich with details without sounding light or lean as the vocals have a spread-out sound without sounding boxy or limited. The instruments complement the vocals and sound vivacious which doesn’t express sharpness or edgy quality in the notes. The lower mid-range has good note weight and sounds clean as well, though as to how well the notes are staged and positioned, I might have not preferred a more warm sound, the vocals and instruments have vague clarity but have rounded notes which sound soothing and warm enough. When it comes to comparing it to the presentation of the Aurora, the response is way more natural sounding with better-emphasised vocals and better-positioned instruments. But again I find the details and clarity over each note better on the Aurora, but the response is not as cohesive as Pilgrim’s. Tracks like Kamihitoe by URU have a soothing yet very dynamic presentation as if I am listening to her live in front of me. The bass notes have a very deep and impactful presentation which alludes and blends with the overall response without influencing any other region. The vocals have a soft and delicate response which sounds very realistic and detailed but at the same time soothing and smooth to listen to. The high notes that URU performs have great vigour which I have not heard in any of the sets around Pilgrim’s price. The notes are very well-refined and detailed, ultimately offering a calming and revitalising experience. It is as if I fell in love with vocals again. Hence the overall presentation of the mid-range is natural, captivating and refined.


When it comes to the bass, it has one of the best-sounding bass responses I have ever heard, it is true that the bass response on HYPE4 sounded way more dynamic and impactful with a good subwoofer feel, but when it comes to how it acts as in the overall response I find the Bass response better on the Pilgrim. The quality and quantity are way better on Pilgrim than its peers. One may look at the graph and find the mid-bass lacking but trust me the bass isn’t absent, the bass has enough heft and presence in the mix. The emphasis is in the sub-bass region which is greatly elevated and helps sound full-bodied and complete and as it is well-controlled, the rumbling and punches sound very well-defined in the mix without sounding too potent or strong. The mid-bass does have enough presence as the slams and thumps sound light but with good heft and presence. When compared to Blessing 3’s or Aurora’s bass, the bass response of the Pilgrim sounds much more organic, pounding and natural sounding. The bass texture and clarity across the overall bass region is excellent, especially in the mid-bass as the bass guitars and toms have a very clean and soft response yet it keeps the details pouring out smoothly. Tracks like Erotica by JAWNS and How2fly by ISOxo have deeper bass impacts and rumble with enough thumps in the mix, the Pilgrim provides the fun and excitement with hard-hitting punches and thumps which feels very filling but resolves fast which helps in distinctiveness in the bass notes. Tracks like Renegades by X Ambassadors have guitar notes that sound immaculate and precise with low notes being better textured and detailed than the Aurora. The kick drums with different frequency ranges sounded very well-defined and pounding, the notes had a natural and organic sound. So all in all the bass response of the bass region is natural, pounding and textured.

Technical Performance

Pilgrim meets every milestone that any IEM priced around $400 has gone through, and, to be honest, outperforms them all. The time and effort spent tuning this IEM are reflected in its sound performance, particularly its technical abilities. To be honest, it is considerably superior in every respect except the details, which Aurora handles best. Let’s get specific.


Soundstage, Sound Imaging & Separation

When it comes to the soundstage, I find the response holographic with great space and depth which allows precise and pristine imaging. The notes have a sharp and clear presentation and with well distinguishable presence, the distinction between the notes is impressive. The separation between the notes has enough room to breathe and allows me to pinpoint the direction the sound is originating from.

Speed & Resolution

Coming to the resolution, it has an excellent resolution with expressive details whether they are macro or micro details, all are effortlessly surfaced. The attack of the notes is fast-paced but the decay seems natural as the notes resolving at this pace make the response sound very clean and sophisticated.


Millet - Anytime Anywhere
Anri - I can’t stop the loneliness
Kohana Lam - A Few Sentimental
Kohana Lam - Loving Me, Loving You
Uru - Kimino Shiawasewo
Uru - Kamihitoe
Kujira Yumemi - Kenka
Majiko - Kokoronashi
Anly - Sukinishinayo
Kohama Lam - A Few Sentimental
Kohana Lam - Loving Me, Loving You
Miliyah - Kono Yumega Samerumade
Rokudenashi - The Flame Of Love
Yu-Peng Chen - A New Day with Hope
Yu-Peng Chen - Another Hopeful Tomorrow
Yu-Peng Chen - For Riddles, for Wonders
Valentino Khan - Satellite
Kai Wachi - Happier By Now
Jawns - Erotica
ISOxo - how2fly
Kai Wachi - Happier By Now
Weeknd - Popular
YUNGBLUD - When We Die(Can We Still Get High)
Bring to Horizon - Kool-Aid
Middle Kids - Bend
FLETCHER - Leads Me On
Loathe - Aggressive Evolution
The Weeknd - Save Your Tears
Sigrid - Burning Bridges
AURORA - Black Water Lilies
AURORA - Runaway
X Ambassadors - Renegades
Lupe Fiasco - Words I Never Said
Macklemore & Ryan Lewis - Can’t Hold Us
Gotye - Somebody That I Used To Know
Jay-Z - Run This Town
Lady Gaga - Poker Face
Lady Gaga - Just Dance
Ladytron - Ghost
Travis - Love Will Come Through
LINKIN PARK - Somewhere I Belong
DJ Shadow - Six Days (Remix)
Hoobastank - The Reason
Ricky Martin - I Don’t Care
Tool - 7empest
Tool - Vicarious
A Flock Of Seagulls - Space Age Love Song
Zack Hemsey - Vengeance
Elton John - I’m Still Standing
The Moody Blues - Nights In White Satin
Micheal Sembello - Maniac
Guns N’ Roses - Sweet Child O’ Mine
A.R. Rahman - Kun Faya Kun


To conclude this review, I have not heard the Annihilator or Diva, but I can confidently claim that Pilgrim sounds unlike any other IEM. What I've read and heard from others is that the Annhilator has an excellent treble revelation and lively presentation, and the Diva has exceptional captivating vocals; I believe I recognize this when I listen to Pilgrim. This receives my highest recommendation in the price range where HYPE 4, Blessing 3, and Aurora are available if the listener wants lively and refined treble, natural and compelling vocals and pounding and detailed bass with no metallic or harshness in the mix. Well, based on everything I've read and heard about the Elysian Acoustic Labs, I definitely relate to them when I hear the Pligrim.