Final Audio E2000

Rating:
4.5/5,
  1. Dobrescu George
    Final Audio E2000 and E3000 - Impressively Inexpen
    Written by Dobrescu George
    Published May 15, 2018
    4.5/5,
    Pros - Good Build Qualiy, Good Comfort, Soundstage, Price, Ergonomics, Balanced sound
    Cons - Bass response is a little slow, E3000 is a little better than E2000
    Final Audio E2000 and E3000 - Impressively Inexpensive

    Final Audio are a large company known for their Sonorus and Heaven series, along with their really exquisite FI-BA-SS series. Today we're going to be looking at their absolute entry-level IEMs, E2000 and E3000.

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    Purchase link (E2000/hifiheadphones.co.uk) : http://www.hifiheadphones.co.uk/final-e2000-in-ear-isolating-earphones-black-aluminium.html

    Purchase link (E3000/hifiheadphones.co.uk) : http://www.hifiheadphones.co.uk/final-e3000-in-ear-isolating-earphones-stainless-steel.html

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    Introduction

    Final Audio is a beloved and respected company when it comes to IEMs (In-Ear Monitors), and they also designed some mighty over-the-ear headphones in the past, but today we're looking at absolutely their most inexpensive offerings. If you're on a budget, and on a very limited budget, this is going to be fairly interesting for you. For mentioning a few words about the company, Final Audio is a very friendly company with a very strong after-sales service and support, and they are very helpful with advice and in guiding their customers to the right product. Their products are also sold in some shops around the world, and although they're very improbable to break, it is nice knowing that you can get them fixed easily, if the need may be.

    It should be noted that I have absolutely no affiliation with Final Audio, I am not receiving any incentive for this review or to sweeten things out. This review is not sponsored nor has been paid for by Final Audio or anyone else. I'd like to thank Final Audio for providing the sample for this review. The sample was provided along with Final Audio's request for an honest and unbiased review. This review will be as objective as it is humanly possible, and it reflects my personal experience with Final Audio E2000 and E3000 models. Every opinion expressed is mine and I stand by it, the purpose of this review is to help those interested in either E2000 or E3000 find their next music companion.



    About me

    https://audiophile-heaven.blogspot.ro/p/about.html



    Packaging

    First things first, let's get the packaging out of the way:


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    Both those IEMs come packaged in a very similar package of similar shape and similar size. They are so similar, that without looking in the box, you might have a hard time telling which is which.

    Both come packaged in small cardboard boxes with the IEMs being shelled in a plastic cut out, while the rest of the accessories and the ables are tucked underneath.

    What is actually lovely to see is that Final Audio doesn't take even their most inexpensive IEMs lightly and they actually provide a large set of accessories with them. Besides a lovely carrying pouch made of leather, you'll get a wide selection of tips, all of which are quite comfortable and well made. We are impressed with the quality of them, and we feel like Final Audio does a great job in making a small yet effective package.


    There are ear hooks included in the package with both E2000 and E3000 IEMs, for those who want to wear them over the ear, but we are using them without the hooks, we always considered them to reduce comfort and won't consider them a plus for actual usage of the IEMs, the cables being better at taking the natural shape of the ear.

    For two IEMs without detachable cables, there's not much to talk about, and for a good reason, they don't go overboard with including stuff that very few would use, and they don't dedicate much of the price of those IEMs to accessories that many might never use.




    What to look in when purchasing a high-end In-Ear Monitor

    https://audiophile-heaven.blogspot.ro/p/what-to-lookl.html



    Technical Specifications



    E2000

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    E3000

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    Build Quality/Aesthetics/Fit/Comfort

    The build quality is really similar between the two, and besides the color being different, we feel like most users won't really notice a difference.

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    Both IEMs are round in shape, just like a bullet, and both have non-detachable cables. Both look like they are going to be very comfortable, both have metal bodies that look really durable, and both have a vent / opening in the back that allows for a better sonic reproduction and venting for the IEMs.

    The aesthetics are really pleasing, and while E2000 is a matte kind of black, the highly reflective, shiny surface of E3000 is going to look really classy and high-quality. Both have similar cables, and to our knowledge, there are versions with remotes and microphones on their cables as well.

    The comfort of both is excellent, the IEM body is very small and it works well with the tips, the IEM fits both while being worn straight-down and over-the-ear, and both have just an excellent overall comfort. There is no driver flex (this is a pretty serious issue until one reaches the midrange sector), and there simply isn't any issue with the comfort that we can mention. In fact, thing which is really amazing, both E2000 and E3000 reach our golden standards of comfort, both feel good while being worn, work well over the ear, with no microphonics, with good tips from the box, and with everything else working simply really well.

    You can wear either for hours in a row without an issue, and both make excellent companions for your music-listening adventure.



    Sound Quality

    The sound Quality is a little different between the two models, but both have some things in common. The short version is that both are amazing, having a really natural tone, along a clear and open midrange, with a good extension both ways, and both have an excellent soundstage and don't sound congested, neither coming off as too dispersed. Neither isn't boomy and doesn't have any glaring issue, making them an instant favorite at their price range (which is really really low, 50 USD for E2000 and 80USD for E3000).

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    For this price, simply, we can't complain in any way. The detail levels are clearly in line with what other IEMs at those price point usually offer, really you're getting better sound quality than the price is able to warrant for them.

    The bass of both units is deep and reaches very low, and has good punchiness, although the sub-bass is good for this price range only. The E3000 is warm and the upper midrange and the lower mids are very satisfying, while E2000 is thinner and has a more neutral approach to things, although it keeps a fairly interestingly slower decay bass that might feel natural or rather "at home" especially for users looking for a IEM at this price range.

    The midrange is quite a little different, with E3000 being more satisfying and thicker in the long run, while E2000 is more neutral, also bringing more emotion to the female vocals and to the upper midrange instruments like violins. E3000 feels more like a chill-and-relax IEM, while E2000 feels more like the emotional performer that would bring the emotional part of the music closer to the listener. While we're talking about the midrange, we would love to note that there are no peaks, no dips, the midrange is strangely balanced and really well done, we're talking about a midrange that not only has a natural tone for this price range, but which has a suspectly good midrange tonal balance for up to 300 USD price point.

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    The treble is also quite different, with E3000 having the more treble of the two, and E2000 being the smoother one. There is some slight roll-off, for those who love to hear less treble and to focus more on the midrange and the bass, and there is a fairly good amount of detail in the treble as well. We're impressed that both IEMs made it this far, and to be honest, E3000 is the more impressing of the two, for having the more balanced overall sonic signature, although with its overall presentation, E2000 is not far behind.



    Soundstage

    Here's the actual surprise. We love soundstage. We actually can't get along quite that well with congested soundstage because we feel it kills part of the presentation, and although metal music usually is very forward, it needs to be wide to sound clean and well presented. Bands like Incubus also require depth for their music to achieve the full impact intended in the original mix, while bands like Dope require more of a wider presentation to come off as fun and playful.

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    Both E3000 and E2000 achieve excellent results on the soundstage, both have excellent sound stages for the price, and while E3000 has the larger one, E2000 doesn't fall behind either. The instrument separation is also impressive, and although we're using something like big words here, please keep in mind that at this price point we didn't have much expectations. We literally expected them to be much less impressive, and the shock of hearing them sound so good makes us use big words to describe them. The soundstage size is what Final Audio really delivers on, and we're happy to note that there is a good amount of air between instruments, and one can describe layers of instruments with ease.



    ADSR / PRaT

    The ADSR/PRaT/Texturization is fair. There's nothing to complain heavily about them, but there's not much to say about them either. The textures are generally natural to slow with a fair amount of detail retrieved from textures. Textures of instruments are not overblown, but they are not the most fine either, still fairly good for the price.



    Portable Usage

    Small IEMs with non-detachable cables, but with a thin and supple cable, ready to come with you on a second's notice. This probably describes both E2000 and E3000 really well. They pair really well with almost anything, be it smartphone or professional-grade DAP, they sound nice with almost anything, and they don't really win that much from better sources, not being revealing enough to make the source matter more.

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    The isolation is fair to pretty low, because the back part of the IEM seems to be open (it seems to be a grille), so they won't isolate well from the outside noise. For the gain they have in soundstage and instrument separation, along with how the music is generally presented, we feel that the fact they are open isn't a large drawback, but if you require something to isolate you from the outside noise, it is worth noting that neither E2000 nor E3000 can't do that.

    The fit and comfort is excellent, even great for running, they fit both straight down and over the ear, the tips are uber-comfortable, the IEM shape and bore size will work with almost any ear, and they are projected to be lightweight and to simply work. They don't feel uncomfortable after a while, and they stay in ears, even after being there for hours, so they really are an excellent IEM in this aspect.

    The overall portability factor for both is good, excellent comfort, great cable and good overall portability.




    Comparisons

    Final Audio E2000/E3000 vs FiiO F5 - We have very few inexpensive IEMs currently, and FiiO F5 is one of them. In a few words, F5 is larger in size, has a smoother, thicker, bassier, and similarly open sound. It has a metal construction, just like E2000 and E3000, but it has detachable cables. Most folks won't buy extra cables for a 50USD IEM, so they tie up in that aspect. If you prefer a really thick and warm sound with a satisfying overall tone, F5 is a good choice, if you prefer a more balanced presentation, either E2000 or E3000 is a good choice.

    Final Audio E2000/E3000 vs Shozy Hibiki - Roughly at the same price point, Shozy Hibiki is a nice-looking IEM, with a really interesting design. It has more going on for it with the detachable cables, but again, we don't feel like anyone purchasing a IEM below 100USD will invest in aftermarket cables. The sound is more mid-centric on Shozy Hibiki, with a much more forward midrange, good instrument separation, and good soundstage. To be fair, if you prefer a more mid-forward signature, Hibiki delivers that, while if you prefer a more balanced signature, E2000/E3000 both are more balanced with a more balanced overall tone.


    Final Audio E2000/E3000 vs Kinera Seed - How do they fare against the mighty little Kinera? Well, they fare well. Kinera Seed is a reminder of Kinera H3, which was aggressively V-shaped, but this time being less aggressively V-shaped, but still pretty V-shaped. Kinera Seed also has good instrument separation, and good soundstage, but the tonal balance is much more in favor of bass and treble, with the midrange being placed in the background. This means that music sounds more punchy and impressive, but it sounds more balanced on E2000/E3000. Like in the other two comparisons, E2000 and E3000 both feel like they are really balanced. If you prefer a more colored sound to warm, to mid-centric, or to V-shaped, any of the IEMs in the comparison list can provide that, but if you're looking after the most balanced one, E2000 and E3000 are that. Kinera seed is just as impressive, but tuned for another kind of taste.



    Recommended Pairings

    Due to their less revealing nature, and balanced tonality, E2000 and E3000 both can pair well with almost any source. They usually are influenced by the source, but given their rather good starting point, they are still enjoyable with analytical, with warm and even with bright sources.

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    Final Audio E2000/E3000 + Shanling M2s - A little DAP to match the size and portability of those two, M2s is more than capable of powering either of the Final Audio IEMs to great overall results, it adds a bit of weight to each musical note, adds a bit of sparkle to the lower treble, and it provides a pretty good amount of detail for their level.

    Final Audio E2000/E3000 + Samsung T580 Tablet - This is an interesting synergy case as we found out, Samsung T580 pairs extremely well with those two IEMs and it leads to a very dynamic and energetic sound, something that many will enjoy. It isn't the best textured sound, and it doesn't have the best depth at all times, but the raw energy and lively presentation surely are worth to consider this pairing. The soundstage is considerably wider than most lower priced sources, and the instrument separation is quite excellent as well. While we haven't tested many Samsung devices, T580 surely impressed us thus far.


    Final Audio E2000/E3000 + HIDIZS AP200 - AP200 is another less expensive device that leads to good results with E2000 and E3000. Similar to Shanling M2s, it is also thicker sounding, with a less expanded soundstage size, but with a bit of a sparkle in the lower treble, along with a thicker sound.



    Value and Conclusion

    We should keep in mind that we're reviewing two IEMs that are priced around 50 USD and 80 USD, so they are well in the entry-level area. For this price, you're getting a really solid package, with a good selection of high quality tips, you're getting a fairly interesting carrying package, although the leather pouch probably won't protect them that much from an impact, and you're getting some great sounding IEMs.


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    The build quality of both E2000 and E3000 is top notch, with metal bodies, and a fairly sturdy, and supple cable. The cables are not detachable, but at this price point most users probably won't get aftermarket cables either. The bodies are vented and they don't present any kind of driver flex, nor have any kind of microphonics, already being pretty good for a IEM in the entry-level area.

    Both IEMs are aesthetically pleasing, with a modern and sleek deisgn, and both IEMs are very comfortable when worn, regardless whether you favor the straight-down or the over-the-ear wearing styles. The tips included in the package don't get slippery after usage, and the IEMs themselves are lightweight and sit well in the ears, without having any hard edges or large body sizes that would otherwise be uncomfortable.

    When it comes to their sonic performance, they are simply astounding. The tonal balance of those two little IEMs was never seen before on such well-priced IEMs, they sound open, they sound clean, and they sound clear. The amount of details that they do reveal, they reveal well and place in good light, and both of them are great at presenting the listener with a good level of dynamics in the music.

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    If you're into a smoother IEM with a more laid-back presentation, then E2000 might be the better choice, and if you're looking for a little more treble sparkle, along with the more emotional presentation, then E3000 might be the better choice for you. At any rate, both those IEMs have good strengths that can make you want them, and if you're really constrained by your budget, then you can get a great performance for just a few USD with either of those two lovely IEMs!

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    Purchase link (E2000/hifiheadphones.co.uk) : http://www.hifiheadphones.co.uk/final-e2000-in-ear-isolating-earphones-black-aluminium.html

    Purchase link (E3000/hifiheadphones.co.uk) : http://www.hifiheadphones.co.uk/final-e3000-in-ear-isolating-earphones-stainless-steel.html

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    I hope my review is helpful to you!

    Stay safe and remember to always have fun while listening to music!




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  2. ryanjsoo
    Final E2000 Review – Budget Delicacy
    Written by ryanjsoo
    Published Oct 2, 2017
    4.5/5,
    Pros - Natural, well-balanced sound, Excellent detailing, Nice metal housings, Great soundstage
    Cons - Thin cable, some treble roll-off, Mediocre isolation
    Introduction –

    I’ve always had a somewhat bittersweet relationship with Final Audio’s earphones. I love their unique and quirky designs like the Piano Forte in addition to their more conventional models like the FI-BA-SS. Furthermore, their tuning methodology is totally unique. Many companies levy that their earphones sound “unlike anything else”, but for Final Audio that was always genuinely true; they are a company that is unafraid to take daring moves in both tuning and form factor.

    However, this challenging ethos was always juxtaposed by very premium price tags and eccentric in-ear housings that came off more as luxuries and proof of concept designs rather than consumer products. As innovative as Final Audio’s products were, they simply didn’t make accessible products. But that all changes with the new E2000 and E3000. Instantly, these models are very reasonably priced at $45 and $65 respectively, they also feature some very unique feats of design and a sound that promises to be balanced with a touch of Final’s magical house sound sprinkled in. This is the second of my two affordable Final Audio reviews and, despite pricing and naming structure, I suspect Final’s more affordable offering may actually find more fans, read on to see why.



    Disclaimer –

    I would like to thank Mark from KS Distribution (UK distributor for Final) very much for his quick communication and for providing me with the E2000 and E3000 for the purpose of review. All words are my own and there is no monetary incentive for a positive review. Despite receiving the earphones free of cost, I will attempt to be as objective as possible in my evaluation.


    Accessories –

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    The E2000 has a conservative unboxing with a nice accessory suite. The earphones come packaged with a soft faux leather pouch and 4 pairs of ear tips in addition to the set installed on the in-ears themselves. Final also include two ear guides should you want to wear them inverted over the ear. The tips are actually quite interesting in design, they’re similar to Sony hybrids in shape but are a bit firmer overall. They have a ridged sound tube designed to conform to the bends of the ear canal similar to Spinfits. However, they do so without obstructing the sound tube, improving transparency. While I did find a more comfortable fit with other ear tips, the stock tips provided the most ideal sound signature to my ears.


    Design –

    Both of Final’s new E-series earphones carry a super simple bullet shaped housing similar to earphones like the Flares Pros and Aurisonics Rockets. They are designed to be worn cable-down but lend themselves well to over-ear wear due to their simple shaping.

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    The housings themselves are anodized aluminium with a matte black finish that resists smudges. Basic model number and orientation letters are laser etched into the housings and their semi-open nature is clearly denoted by their exposed rear vents. The nozzles are plastic and quite short but some ridging prevents tips from slipping off unintentionally. In addition, the housings are also vented at the front which explains their tip sensitivity. Overall, the E2000’s fit and finish, like the E3000, is superb given their asking price, comparing well to class leaders like the Fiio EX1 2nd Gen and Meze 11 Neo.

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    Comfort is also great on account of their minute dimensions, they are easily one of the smallest in-ears I’ve handled. As such, they disappear in the ear with minimal weight and no hotspot formation during extended listening. Due to their open nature, isolation is below average though they are similar to the vented Fiio’s and Meze’s. Home listeners will enjoy the added spatial awareness but they do tend to lean out on public transport.

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    My main issue with the Final earphones, when compared to competing models, is their cable. I can forgive the use of a fixed cable but the unit Final opted for it very thin and poorly relieved at all terminations. In return, the cable is super supple and very compliant with no memory or springiness, it also has a nice matte finish and minimal microphonic noise given the earphone’s cable down fit.

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    Luckily, the gold-plated right-angle jack looks to be pretty sturdy with more extended strain relief though the y-split and housing reinforcements are more dubious. The cable is a far cry from the excellent unit used on the Fiio and the much hardier cable utilized by the Meze’s though I still prefer it to the Shozy Zero’s ergonomic nightmare of a cable.



    Sound –

    Tonality –

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    The E2000 has a very tasteful v-shaped sound with a mid and to a lesser extent, sub-bass emphasis combined with some additional middle treble crispness. Mids aren’t upfront, but integrate well into the sound. And compared to similarly priced offerings, the E2000 is more on the balanced side, especially when compared to the more bass orientated E3000. Most notably, the E2000 has a clearer midrange and more prominent high-end that does a better job balancing out their boosted bass response. As such, the E2000 finds nice genre versatility with some added engagement keeping things interesting.


    Bass –

    The E2000 has an excellent low-end response that finds a nice balance between power, fullness and control. Sub-bass extension is almost as good as the E3000 and better than the vast majority of competing models, though they are less emphasized and tighter in their presentation. Rumble is well-defined even if sub-bass still isn’t quite as tight as the Fiio EX1 2nd Gen and they have nice slam when called for. Mid-bass holds the most emphasis in the sound which is quite typical, granting lows with a full tone. However, the E2000 is still one of the most controlled, linear earphones around this price, allowing it to avoid the bloat and muddiness of the E3000 though again, the more sub-bass orientated Fiio is slightly cleaner yet at the cost of linearity. And during extended listening, this more linear tone grants the E2000 with such an addictive lushness without the irking bloat of the Zero and E3000 or the perhaps overly cool tone of the Fiio.

    Otherwise, texturing is good and bass separation is much better than most competing models like the Shozy Zero and Meze 11 Neo. And though bass isn’t profoundly detailed, their tasteful tone combined with their separation enables intricacies to be more easily discerned. The E2000 thus excels with many genres, they have plenty of sub-bass slam to service rock and pop while remaining clean and separated enough to service acoustic and jazz. Their added mid-bass fullness is also very tasteful, more so than Final’s higher-end offering, producing an articulate low-end response that impresses both in terms of tone and quality.


    Mids –

    Though the E2000 may diverge from the E3000 in its tonality, both are cut from the same cloth with regards to overall character. The E2000 retains the fuller tone of the E3000 but forgoes its thickness and warmth in favour of more clarity and balance. As such, the E2000 is immediately more transparent and versatile, it isn’t as easy going as the E3000 but manages greater transparency through more accurate lower mids and upper midrange prominence. It is still on the slightly darker side, but female vocals are very clear and delicate while maintaining the extension of the E3000 which greatly benefits Asian music and instruments such as piano and guitar. Male vocals remain slightly full-bodied but lack any excessive thickness and female vocals are clear but also slightly thin though no more so than the EX1 2nd Gen. Extension is nice and there are no major dips or spikes within the midrange, retaining that smoother character of the E3000.

    The E2000 is also surprisingly technical given its price and though the E3000 has a slight edge in outright resolution. That said, resolution is high on the E2000 and its more linear tuning, spacious stage and clarity all enhance the presence of smaller nuances. Detail retrieval is very good, they don’t quite possess the body and layering of the E3000 but their clearer tuning is more detail forward. This creates a generally more aggressive presentation though the E2000’s possess very impressive refinement considering their price. Furthermore, voicing is spot on, the earphones sound pretty darn natural even when compared to a lot of the best performers around $100 like the Kinera H3. So while they aren’t the most outright lucid, revealing earphone out there, the E2000 handily bests a lot of in-ears around the same price and does well to keep up with some costing quite a bit more.


    Treble –

    Treble is detailed and clear with slight prominence over the midrange imbuing the E2000 with some extra clarity. They are immediately more vibrant than E3000 and Meze in-ears though not to the extent of the Fiio EX1 2nd Gen. And like the Fiio, the E2000 has more of a middle-treble emphasis combined with a slightly thinner note presentation which can make instruments like cymbals sound slightly splashy. However, the Final has more accurate instrument timbre overall and, like its midrange, it is not neutral but quite linear when compared to competing models. Extension is also good, they retain the roll-off of the E3000 so aren’t quite as resolving as the EX1 2nd Gen at the very top, but they do achieve a similar level of extension to earphones from Shozy and Meze. And since treble is more vibrant below, the earphones possess a nice amount of air more, in fact, than the E3000, and are generally more revealing within the higher frequencies.

    And as far as technicality is concerned, treble, while slightly thin, is still very well detailed and crisp. They lack the treble spike that a lot of chifi earphones around $100 employ and this more refined, mature tuning keeps sibilance in check while benefitting texturing. They are actually more detailed than the E3000 and more aggressive in their presentation with more attack and bite to each note. Strings are well portrayed and the treble response successfully engages without fatiguing the listener. While some grain is apparent, especially noticeable with guitars and strings that lack the smoothness of the E3000 and Meze 11 Neo, never do the earphones come across as strident, harsh or coarse. They are crisp but naturally voiced with great, almost outstanding technical ability.


    Soundstage, Imaging and Separation –

    The E2000 has a very spacious soundstage though, due to its more forward sound, it doesn’t quite match the space of the E3000. That said, width is excellent, not out of the head but on the periphery, and depth, though more intimate, projects well, providing a lot of immersion to vocals and instruments. In addition, due to the E2000’s more balanced sound, imaging is noticeably better than the E3000 though still not pinpoint precise. Centre image is slightly diffuse but solid in the grand scheme of things and separation is very good for the price, in between the excellent EX1 2nd Gen and the E3000 which are among the best performers around this price. They also lack the bass congestion of the E3000 and highs are noticeably airier due to their revised tuning. Listening to Arcade Fire’s “The Suburbs” and the E2000 provided excellent tonal weighting, vocals were enveloping and stereo image wide, instruments were all-encompassing without coming off as distant and directional cues were well placed.



    Drivability –

    The E2000’s are more transparent than the E3000 and better reflect the qualities of the source device as a result. They remain easy to drive with a 12ohm impedance and 102dB sensitivity making smartphone use a breeze. However, the E2000 actually scales pretty well with a dedicated source, especially bass that tightens up quite a bit with some amplification. However, users with more powerful smartphones like the LG V20/30 and HTC 10 may not feel the need for a dedicated amplifier or DAC/AMP and the earphones still lack the outright resolution to take full advantage of something like the Chord Mojo or Shozy Alien+. The E2000’s don’t require a dedicated source but will scale nicely when attached to one, they actually sound better from a slightly fuller sources which helps smooth out their thinner upper midrange and treble response.



    Comparisons –

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    Final E3000 ($55): The two earphones are identical in design but differ in finish and materials. The E2000 has a matte black aluminium enclosure while the E3000 employs a chromed stainless steel housing. This is another instance where price and model number do not denote quality because E2000 rather represents a different style of tuning rather than a downgrade in technical performance. The E3000 is more L-shaped with greater mid-bass emphasis and bloat, the E2000 is tighter and more defined but retains nice low-end kick and fullness. The E3000 has a thicker midrange throughout, lacking the clarity of the E2000 but also that slight raspiness to female vocals. The E3000 has slightly more midrange resolution and space but the E2000 is universally clearer and more detailed. The E3000 is smooth and laid-back within the higher frequencies while the E2000 is crisp and slightly lifted in emphasis. The E3000 has a larger soundstage but lacks the separation of the E2000 due to its thick tuning.

    Shozy Hibiki ($45): The Hibiki has a nice build with authentic carbon fibre faceplates and a very solid 2-pin removable cable that contrast to the more delicate E2000. Sonically, the Hibiki places greater emphasis on the higher frequencies while the E2000 is more low-frequency focussed. The Hibiki has more sub-bass weighting with a slightly cleaner response though both are similarly defined and textured. The Hibiki has a brighter, more forward midrange that contrasts to the slightly darker Final though the E2000 has a touch more resolving power and notably greater separation that enables greater definition of nuances. The Hibiki has a forward treble response but details lack the “bite” of the Final due to a dip in the lower treble. In return, the Hibiki extends further and middle treble elements are resolved with greater clarity however, I feel that the Hibiki is slightly too bright and source dependent. Chiefly, its high-end can dominate lower notes while the E2000’s more balanced sound tastefully heightens engagement with lesser sacrifice though this will ultimately come down to individual preference. Finally, the E2000 has a larger stage in all directions combined with greater separation though the Hibiki does image very well considering its asking price.

    Kinera H3 ($100): The H3 is plastic but its design is more stable and isolates far better. It also has a removable cable that feels much sturdier than the unit on the E2000. The H3 is more obviously v-shaped than the E3000 with a somewhat scooped lower midrange and brighter overall tonal balance. Bass is similarly tuned and emphasized though the Kinera has a more impactful, extended sub-bass response and is cleaner and markedly more defined throughout. Mids are brighter on the H3 primarily due to their recessed lower midrange and thinner character up top. The H3 also has greater clarity and slightly more resolution while the E2000 has more separation and space which acts almost to the same effect while maintaining a more natural presentation. Treble is noticeably more detailed and extended on the H3 though its spiked lower treble will not suit every listener. The E2000 isn’t quite as nuanced but is still admirably detailed and its more linear tuning picks up certain details that the more uneven Kinera can muddy. The E2000 has a larger soundstage in addition to greater separation while the H3 images slightly better.



    Verdict –

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    I can’t commend the E2000 more for their price/performance ratio, as far as sound is concerned, the E2000 makes for a very easy recommendation. They are V-shaped but very tastefully so, clear and natural in their presentation and their soundstage is separated and spacious to top it off. While they aren’t explicitly neutral, the E2000 is very engaging without overstepping any boundaries with their bass or treble emphasis. Unfortunately, I can’t freely recommend them as a daily beater on account of their thin cable and meagre strain relief, both of which fail to inspire confidence in their longevity. This is compounded upon by their mediocre isolation due to their semi-open nature. However, if you’re looking for a natural, clear yet vibrant in-ear for listening in quieter environments, the E2000 is sonically competitive with a lot of the better $100 in-ears out there. This is one of those rare instances where an earphone truly outperforms its price class rather than simply placing well within it.

    Verdict – 9/10, The E2000 manages to best competing models in terms of balance, detail and refinement while simultaneously sitting near the bottom in pricing. If you’re not too hard on your earphones and don’t mind the lack of isolation, the E2000’s are a comfortable and resolving earphone that sonically outperform their asking price.

    Thanks for reading! If you enjoyed my review, please see my blog for more just like it:

    https://everydaylisteningblog.wordpress.com/2017/09/26/final-e2000-review-budget-delicacy/