1. Wyville
    Final E5000 - Size doesn't matter
    Written by Wyville
    Published Oct 10, 2018
    4.5/5,
    Pros - Versatile, fun and exciting signature that is very coherently balanced, bass response is especially good, small form factor with a comfortable fit, very good build quality, detachable cables, excellent value
    Cons - Sound leakage restricts their use in public places, stiff and microphonic cable
    Final E5000

    Disclaimer
    I would like to thank Final, for providing me with the E4000 and loaning the E5000 in exchange for my honest opinion. No incentive was given for a favourable review.

    This review is part of a double review of the E4000 and E5000 and as such some sections (such as the preamble) will be the same. You can find the E4000 review here.

    E5000.png

    E5000
    • Housing: Stainless steel mirror-finished
    • Driver: 6.4mm dynamic driver
    • Connector: MMCX
    • Cable: OFC silver coated cable
    • Sensitivity: 93dB
    • Impedance: 14Ω
    • Weight: 24g
    • Cord length: 1.2m
    • Price: £219/$279

    Links:
    http://snext-final.com/en/
    Available at:
    HiFi Headphones (UK)
    http://www.hifiheadphones.co.uk/final-e5000-in-ear-isolating-earphones-with-detachable-cable.html
    Audio46 (US)
    https://audio46.com/shop/final-audio-e5000-hi-res-earphones/

    Preamble
    Final (previously known as Final Audio Design) is a Japanese company that produces quite distinctive headphones and IEMs. They have certainly been able to capture my attention, not in the least with their Piano Forte series that have a completely unique earbud/IEM/horn speaker-type of design that has fascinated me ever since I first laid my eyes on them. As a classical music lover the Piano Forte present a compelling proposition and this is perhaps the type of response Final is going for. Final aim at (as they explain it on their website) creating products that elicit the same sort of affinity people have with hand-wound watches, something classical and enduring. Indeed, their specialty Lab series earphones are exquisite pieces of audiophile art I never tire drooling over. But it is not just at the high end of the spectrum where Final creates unique products, their Heaven series of single BA driver IEMs have always listed high on my wish list because I keep reading such positive comments about them. Most recently though a lot of those positive comments have been about another Final series, the E series of small form factor, single dynamic driver IEMs.

    E5000_Box.png

    The E series launched with the entry level E2000 and E3000, and this was when I finally got my first pair of Final IEMs. Well, not really "my" first Final IEMs because I ended up buying them for my wife when her Trinity Vyrus started falling apart. Since I wanted to hear why people were so excited about the new E series, I leapt at the opportunity to arrange a demo for myself... "Look hunny, I bought you a present!" The ones I bought were the E2000, which was because I gave my wife the choice between the two based on their signature, to which she responded... "The black ones." Granted, I tried them out for training and actually ended up buying a pair for myself as well because I also, kinda preffered the black colour. Although formally I will of course always be adamant I did it because I appreciated the energetic elegance of the v-shaped E2000 better for training. It sounds more like I actually put some thought into it. I didn't, I just wanted to test the form factor because by that time I had already set my sights on the E5000. So when I was asked if I wanted to do a double review of the E4000 and E5000, I said yes without even thinking about it. I had been using the E2000 for a few weeks and they were perfect for training and on-the-go use, and while I did not really worry about sound quality, I kept having to remind myself that I was not listening to much more expensive IEMs. The E2000 just had such a pleasant sound with a stage quite surprisingly wide for the price. So naturally I was curious how much of a step up the E4000 and E5000 would be. Let's find out!

    E5000_2.png E5000_cable.png

    Build quality and fit
    The E5000 are really nice small form factor IEMs that have an excellent build quality. It is clearly a step up from the E4000, which I still consider to have a great build quality. Not only has the housing been upgraded from aluminium to stainless steel, the cable too has gone from a copper to a silver-plated copper. Unfortunately here I find that while the cable material is an improvement, the ergonomics are not. The cable is quite stiff and the braiding that was used further exacerbates the microphonics to rather annoying levels. It means that these, in my opinion, really should be worn with the cable over the ear, rather than straight down, which I only do when sitting behind my desk where I can secure the cable to prevent it from moving.

    Aside from the cable, which is detachable and so can be replaced (phew!), comfort is outstandingly good. The stainless steel housing does add some weight, but I have had no issues whatsoever with the fit. This is in no small part due to the Final E tips that are included, which I love and use on most of my IEMs, including my $1,800 Empire Ears Phantom. The E5000 sit securely and comfortable for hours on end while I work, cook, everything. These are just brilliant in that regard and a real selling point.

    One point to be aware of is that the E5000 (and E4000) have a vented design that is almost like it is semi-open. I find the isolation to be decent considering, noise certainly leaks in, but I have still used them quite effectively to reduce some of the environmental noise. However, noise leaks out a lot more and this might make them less ideal for commuting if you like to turn up the volume. It will most likely be heard by people standing close (or sitting close, if you happen to commute in places where people are not being packed in like sardines, but I live in London). Surprisingly this was worse in the case of the E4000 and E5000 than in the E2000, which has what looks like a vented mesh at the back while the newer models look more closed, they clearly are not.

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    Source
    All listening was done with my AK70 from the SE out. Both the E4000 and E5000 seem like very power-hungry IEMs and a good source will make a big difference in how well they sound. When driven by a less powerful source they will sound little thin and less impressive, but both IEMs come alive when given more power, especially the E5000.

    Presentation
    The E5000 have a somewhat U-shaped signature with a little more emphasis towards the sub-bass to give a warm and smooth signature with a surprising amount of impact. By comparison the U-shape of E4000 is tilted a little more towards the treble to give a somewhat brighter tone (by comparison, not bright as such). The E5000 have a well-balanced signature that is lively, very coherent and wonderfully smooth. The stage is wide, very wide at this price point, tall, but not very deep. Thanks to the width and height, separation is incredibly good. I like torturing IEMs I review with classical symphonies, as those are technically demanding because of all the instruments, the layering and the different tones of instruments. While the E5000 are not ideal for classical music, they do an incredibly good job of presenting the performance. The layering is really quite good thanks to the excellent separation and it is further improved by a still quite natural tonality, especially with mid-range instruments such as woodwinds. It is not a perfectly balanced image with some emphasis on the bass section thanks to a very energetic bass, and strings are a little accentuated, though as a lover of violins I can't really complain about that.

    The real strength of the E5000 is in presenting an energetic sound that feels balanced just right for more popular types of music. When I fed them Imagine Dragons' 'Yesterday' as one of the first songs I listened to, the slam and energy really impressed me. These are fun IEMs to listen to. Not IEMs with a high resolution and tons of detail, they are not all that impressive in those aspects, but that is immediately forgotten because of the energy with which they present the music. While the resolution might not be all that impressive, I was actually quite impressed by their clarity. Vocals sit a little further back than I would like and are perhaps lacking a little in density (I am a "vocalholic", so take it as such), but they are very clearly defined.

    Bass
    The E5000 have an amazing bass that can hit surprisingly hard. I mean, the first time I heard them I went "WTF?!" and yanked them out of my ears to re-confirm their diminutive size because they sounded flipping huge. Oh my, did Imagine Dragons' "Yesterday" sound good! The bass hits so hard, can really rumble and has just the right amount of emphasis that the rest of the signature remains squeaky clean and clear. The tightness of the bass does mean less warmth is added to mid-range than I think is needed for it to sound entirely natural (in the same sense as the E4000), but that is soon forgotten once you start listening to pop music or metal or anything really with a sense of pace and energy.

    While I do find that the bass is not quite natural and a cello sounds like it is lacking the resonance I like while listening to the E4000, the bass does have more air and detail in it. It is articulate and more so than with the E4000 dictates the rhythm and pace to really engage the listener. I never get tired of it and every time I return to the E5000 after listening to other (much more expensive) IEMs I still get that WTF-moment when the bass kicks in. Thoroughly engaging!

    Mids
    The mids are a little less far back than with the E4000, giving the E5000 a slightly more linear signature, although still U-shaped and far from flat. Thanks to the tighter bass mid-range clarity is excellent and it really impresses me how clear and detailed everything sounds without forcing the detail forward. It has a certain natural smoothness to it that means classical music is not among the E5000's strong points, but that again is soon forgotten because it just sounds "right". I can still happily listen to classical music and forget about trying to pick up every little detail and simply enjoy the flow of the music.

    Vocals are a very good and feel a stronger than with the E4000. Vocals always come through very clearly and smoothly without a notable bias for male or female vocals. I love listening to vocal music with these and even though I think the E4000 do relatively better with acoustic music, I still end up preferring to listen to Caro Emerald's Acoustic Sessions with the E5000 because of the quality of the vocals. It just sounds so lovely and smooth and clear and... am I really listing to IEMs costing £219?! It is not quite "budget", but the E5000 sound gorgeous for the price.

    Treble
    The treble of the E5000 is more linear than with the E4000 and relatively speaking slightly attenuated, and that is a good thing. The E5000 don't need much of a lift due to the tighter bass and the result is a very natural sounding and pleasantly sparkling treble. It is less articulate and blends in a bit better within the image to give a more natural feel to instruments such as cymbals. It means the overall signature is less focused on details and to my ears has better coherency, something that I find back in the presentation of metal music such as Disturbed's 'Mine'. It sounds raw and energetic without the cymbals sparking with the sharpness of the E4000 (not that the E4000 sound that sharp, just by comparison). Cymbals sound more complete, like they are given more time to resonate properly.

    The treble is, as can be expected, very smooth and never offensive or sibilant in any way. I personally prefer my treble this way and it makes for a comfortable and fatigue free listening experience.

    E4000_E5000.png

    Comparisons
    -E4000-
    Sadly I do not have the E3000 to compare, which would have been very interesting, as I think the E5000 will probably be a more mature version of those. No doubt it will be a significant step up, as this is already the case between the E4000 and E5000. The E5000 are definitely a step up from the E4000, although there are also some differences in terms of the signature that can be worth considering. The E5000 have an incredibly engaging sound that is a little more articulate than the E4000, which in my opinion makes them perform a bit less well for acoustic music when compared to the E4000. While the E5000 have a slightly more linear signature (still U-shaped), I find myself preferring the E4000 for classical music. For pop music though the E5000 really shine and I greatly prefer the energy with which they present the music.

    In terms of build quality the E5000 is again a step up, but while the cable is technically a better one, I much prefer the more supple and less microphonic cable of the E4000. For the E5000 that would mean possibly spending extra on getting an aftermarket cable, which, at this price point, I am not sure would be sensible. Still, I have seen people do it with very nice results, so the potential of the E5000 might still make it worth considering. In terms of size they are the same and I find no practical differences in fit and general use. Even the added weight of the E5000 has given me no issues at all. Again, with both the E4000 and E5000 Final offer outstanding value and the choice will probably mostly come down to the budget you have available. They are highly versatile, fun and comfortable IEMs that are a joy to listen to.

    Conclusions
    The E5000 have really impressed me and I think they offer excellent value. They are exciting IEMs that sound much larger than their diminutive size suggests. Final have come up with an incredibly well-balanced and coherent signature that works great for all types of popular music, making them very versatile and a great option for many people to consider.
  2. Moonstar
    Final E5000 vs Final E4000; The Comparative Review
    Written by Moonstar
    Published Aug 2, 2018
    4.5/5,
    Pros - Great detail level for the price (both E4000 & E5000),
    Warm en emotional male vocal presentation (E5000),
    Clean and transparent female vocals (E4000),
    Good build quality (for both E4000 & E5000),
    Nice accessory’s package (both E4000 & E5000),
    SPC cable with stellar build quality (E5000)
    Cons - Not very easy to driver IEM’s (E5000 is even more power hungry),
    Refinement (E4000)
    Final E5000 vs Final E4000; The Comparative Review



    Introduction:

    S’NEXT is a company that sells high-end audio earphones and headphones under its own brand “final” as well as conducting component technology development, product planning, design, planning, manufacturing and sales of other companies’ brands.
    The company was established in 2007 in Japan.

    The E Series is created to fulfill high-quality sound, simple design, user-friendly for a affordable price.

    They are actually 6 models that belong to the E Series. The E2000, E2000C/CS, E3000 and the E3000C which are the entry level models without MMCX connector, the E4000, which is the intermediate model with MMCX connection and the E5000, which is the top of the line.

    I will compare the final E5000 with the E4000, which have a quite different sound tuning.



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

    Original Post: http://moonstarreviews.net/final-e5000-vs-e4000-the-comparative-review/



    Disclaimer:

    The final E4000 and E5000 are provided to me by S’NEXT as a review sample. I am not affiliated with S’NEXT or any third person beyond this review and these words reflect my true and unaltered opinions about this products.


    Product Link:
    http://snext-final.com/en/products/eseries/


    The Price:

    The final E5000 is sold for $279,00 and the final E4000 for $149,00.

    S’NEXT doesn’t sell its products directly, but the list of the dealers for the international market is bellow;

    http://snext-final.com/en/dealers/



    Package and Accessories:

    Both In-Ear Monitors are coming in a identical package. This is a white cardboard box with glossy finish that sports the product visual and model name on the front and technical details on the back.

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    The accessories included to the package are identical and are listed below:

    • 1 pair x of final E5000 or E4000 In-Ear Monitor
    • 5 pairs x Silicone Eartips (E type in 5 sizes – SS/S/M/L/LL)
    • 1 pair x of Ear hook
    • 1 pcs x Karabiner


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    The Karabiner and silicone ear-hooks/guides that are included to the package are a nice addition.

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    The package of both IEM’s is including 5 pairs (comes in 5 sizes – SS/S/M/L/LL) E type silicon eartips which are very comfortable to insert in to my ear channels. If you look on the back of each pair, you can see that it differs in colors. The gray indicates left and red is for the right ear pieces.

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    The carry case that is inclueded in the box of both IEM’s is made of silicon and the cables can be rolled up and stored easily in it. The earphones themselves are gently secured using thin dome-shaped silicon covers.

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    Design and Build Quality:

    Both the final E4000 and E5000 sharing the same design language and have a small tube like shaping. The main difference is the material and color used for the housing. The E4000 is machined from aluminum and has a black painting, while the E5000 is machined from stainless steel that has a mirror finish. The housing of the E4000 and E5000 sports on one side the final branding and on the other side the model information.

    [​IMG]

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    The form of both IEM’s is sound nozzle that is made of a black plastic material and sports a filter in each of those nozzles.

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    On the back of both IEM’s is the final logo branding that looks like a honeycomb, which consists of three hexagons.

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    On the bottom you can find the MMCX (Micro Miniature Coaxial) connectors and the left right markings are easily to identify. The build quality of the MMCX female connectors are great and don’t have a loose or too tight fitting.

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    The overall build quality is on a high level and gives a solid appearance.

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    Cables:

    Both, the final E4000 and E5000 have detachable cables with MMCX (Micro Miniature Coaxial) connectors which are developed in-company. The main difference is in the wire material, look and feel.

    The cable of the E4000 is made of a high purity OFC (Oxygen Free Copper) wire and has a soft and flexible black PVC coating.

    [​IMG]

    The cable of the final E5000 is made by the Junkosha Corporation. This Japanese brand develops and manufactures products such as high speed coaxial cables that boast the world’s fastest transmission speed at 95% the speed of light, as well as cables for demanding fields such as marine and aerospace, healthcare and power generation facilities.

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    The wire of the final E5000 cable is made of a high purity SPC (Silver Plated Cooper), which has a transparent PVC coating.

    The insulator film is made from PFA (perfluoroalkoxy) which is transparent and has a light blue glow. This material is an also developed by Junkosha who used their extensive know-how through the JUNFLON® brand to create an low-permittivity material.

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    The MMCX connector housing of the final E4000 MMCX is made of plastic and has right (R) and left (L) markings. The right connector sports a red ring for an easier identification.

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    The MMCX connector housing of the final E5000 on the other hand is made of metal (aluminum) and has also Left and Right markings and a red ring for the right and black for the left channel.

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    The MMCX male connector of the E5000 is fitting tighter and gives a sturdier feel than those of the connector on the E4000 cable, which is not bad at all.

    The 3.5mm (TRS) single ended headphone jack of the final E4000 has a black L angled profile with a black metal housing.

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    The headphone jack of the final E5000 has the same design with a L angled profile, but has a mirror like finish.

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    As a result; The final E5000 is more visually appealing and gives an extra feel for fine details.





    Fit, Comfort and Isolations:

    The final E4000 and E5000, both are very ergonomic and comfortable to wear due the small tube/cylinder like design, which fits perfectly in to my ears. They are also very lightweight, because the stainless steel E5000 measures only 24 grams, while the E4000 with aluminum housing is even more lightweight with 18grams.

    The noise isolation for both E4000 & E5000 is above average, but is in a acceptable level for the use in public environments like metro, bus or train.

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    Drivability:

    This final IEM’s have a relative low impedance of 14 ohms for the E5000 and 15 ohms for the E4000, but all this details doesn’t mean that this IEM’s are easy to driver. Yes, you can drive both IEM’s via Smartphones, tablets, etc. but you can feel that this IEM’s need some extra power due the relative low sensitivity of 93dB for the final E5000 and 97dB for the final E4000. To hear the true potential and make this IEM’s really shine, I would advice to use a small portable amplifier or a Digital Audio Player (DAP) with good amplification.

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    Features:

    There is an acoustic resistor inside the rear housing of the driver unit, and this controls the low mid-range frequency characteristics that determine the framework of the sound quality. At the end of this, there is a pipe bent into an L-shape (acoustic chamber) which is necessary for tuning to achieve a balance between the volume of low frequencies and clarity.

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    Technical Specifications:

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    Sources:

    a) In Ear Monitor : final E4000, final E5000
    b) DAP/DAC : Cayin N5II, Chord Mojo, Hidizs DH1000, Fiio Q5, LG V30 Plus, Audirect Beam

    c) Albums & Tracks used for this review:

    • Minor Empire – Bulbulum Altin Kafeste (Spotify)
    • London Grammar – Interlud (Live) (Flac 24bit/44kHz)
    • Laura Pergolizzi – Lost On You “Live at Harvard and Stone” (Tidal Hi-Fi)
    • Jehan Barbur – Yollar (Spotify)
    • Vivaldi – Le Quarttro Stagioni “The Four Season” (Tidal Hi-Fi)
    • Steve Srauss – Mr. Bones (Flac 16bit/44kHz)
    • Otto Liebert & Luna Negra – The River (DSF) – Binaural Recording
    • GoGo Penguin – Fanfares (Tidal Hi-Fi)
    • Adam Taylor – Colour to the Moon (Flac 16bit/44kHz)
    • Casey Abrams – Robot Lover (Tidal Hi-Fi)
    • Future Heroes – Another World (Tidal Hi-fi)
    • Lorde – Team (Flac 24bit/48kHz)
    • Tom Player – Resonace Theory “Album” (Tidal Hi-Fi)
    • Liquid Tension Experiment 2 – Acid Rain (Spotify)
    • Opeth – Damnation (Tidal Hi-Fi)
    • Megadeth – Sweating Bullets (Flac 16bit/44kHz)
    • Metallica – Sad bu True (Flac 24bit/96kHz)


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    Sound Analysis and Comparisons:

    This review is written after a burn-in of approx 95-100 hours. I have used the stock silicone ear tips for both IEM’s, which were included to the package..


    Sound Signature and Tonality:

    The final E4000 and final E5000 are belonging to the same E model series, but that doesn’t mean that they share the same sound signature or tonality. The final Audio e4000 has a brighter tonality and is more midrange/ upper midrange focused, while the final E5000 sounds in general warmer, fuller, bass-focused and more detailed.

    Both In-Ear Monitors are relative power hungry and needing some juice, which you can get with a DAP, amplifier or DAC/AMP to archive a more balanced sound. The E5000 needs even more power than the E4000 to show its potential.

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    Bass:

    The final E4000 has less sub-bass depth, emphasis and amount than the E5000. The bass extension and sub-bass depth of the final E5000 is superior.

    Both In-Ear Monitors have a petty controlled bass presentation, while there is a difference in character. The bass of the final E4000 sounds cleaner, brighter and dryer, while the final E5000 shares a thicker fuller and a warmer bass presentation.

    The lower frequency performance of the final E5000’in will satisfy most users, even bass-head’s, because of its pretty good bass emphasis, depth and rumble. The bass of the final E4000 sounds cleaner and has better speed compared to the E5000, but is missing some depth, which makes it more suitable for genres like acoustic, rock or even metal music.



    Mids:

    The final E4000 has a relative bright, transparent and lively midrange presentation. The final E5000 on the other hand sounds warmer, fuller and softer, together with a wider midrange area than those of the E4000. The final E5000 has in most situation a better detail retrieval and instrument separation capability.

    The final E5000 offers more detail and depth in the presentation of male vocals. The final E4000, on the other hand, has the upper hand in presenting female vocals, which is due to the extra vivid, crisp, and emphasized tonality, which means that the E4000 has a female vocal tuning. The midrange of the final E5000 sounds softer and more emotional, while the final E4000 has a brighter and more vivid appearance.

    Both In-Ear Monitors have a quite controlled upper midrange presentation, without any remarkable interference/intermixture.

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    Treble:


    The treble range of the E4000 sounds bright/clear and a litter bit on the dryer side, while the E5000 sounds fuller, softer and warmer together with a ticker tonality. The treble presentation of both In-Ear Monitors is sounds pretty comfortable and is sibilance free, which makes those IEM’s ideal for long listening periods.

    The treble/highs of the E5000 are like blizzards in the dark. The treble performance of the E5000 is technical superior to the E4000, due the better extension, sharpness and detail level. The treble presentation of the E5000 sounds also slightly fuller than those of the E4000.

    The E5000 sounds more natural with woodwind instruments, while i like the E4000 better with instruments like violins. I quite enjoyed the violin performance of the E4000 was Vivaldi’s – Le Quarttro Stagioni “The Four Seasons.

    Both IEM’s sharing a pretty good performance while presenting the cymbals in Megadeth – Sweating Bullets. The tonality of instruments like cymbals sounds slightly dry with the E4000, while the E5000 sounds fuller and with more volume.

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    Soundstage:

    The soundstage of the E5000 is wider and deeper than those of the E4000, which performs otherwise pretty well for a sub $200 In-Ear Monitor. The soundstage of the E5000 wider than its depth and the same situation is noticeable with the E4000 where the difference is slightly lower. The height of the E4000 performs slightly better than E5000 and both IEM’s have adequate soundstage for a pretty good instrument separation.



    Conclusion:

    Both, the final E4000 and E5000 sharing some great detail level packed in a small and lightweight housing with pretty good build quality and the best thing is that the price of this Japanese IEM’s is on the reasonable side. But you should note that both of this In-Ear Monitors need some juice to show the true potential. All in all, great job!



    Pros and Cons:

    • + Great detail level for the price (both E4000 & E5000)
    • + Warm en emotional male vocal presentation (E5000)
    • + Clean and transparent female vocals (E4000)
    • + Good build quality (for both E4000 & E5000)
    • + Nice accessory’s package (both E4000 & E5000)
    • + SPC cable with stellar build quality (E5000)
    • – Not very easy to driver IEM’s (E5000 is even more power hungry)
    • – Refinement (E4000)

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  3. iems0nly
    For the refined audiophile
    Written by iems0nly
    Published Jun 11, 2018
    5.0/5,
    Pros - Sublime delivery. Novel tuning. Very smooth, yet detailed sound
    Cons - Unconventional tuning; warm sounding; laid-backed highs. Takes a while to appreciate
    Simple Man’s review – Final E5000 (~299 USD incl. import);
    This is called simple man’s review because they are based on the sound of these earphones directly from my mobile phone (HTC 10), using 320 Kbps mp3 tracks. No expensive gears nor lossless tracks,no EQ, and all that hi-fi stuff.

    Final Like Facebook dropped the “the”, Final dropped the “Audio Design”. I really appreciate this move and it sounds much cooler this way. The logo as well.

    Product Specs :
    Driver: 6.4mmΦ dynamic driver
    Impedance: 14 Ohms; Sensitivity: 93dB
    Weight: 24g
    Cable: MMCX connectors, 1.2 m OFC silver coated cable

    e_cut.jpg

    Build – 5/5
    Stellar build quality. Virtually unbreakable. Narrow and small cylindrical stainless steel house the driver. The twisted white wires are covered in a protective sheath which are transparent and feel good to the touch. Cylindrical Stainless Steel (CSS) is the theme: with CSS housings for MMCX connectors, CSS Y splitters and CSS L shaped housing for the 3.5mm jack as well which has great strain relief. The MMCX connectors also colour coded with Red with Black to indicate Right and Left respectively. They are closed back unlike the little brother E3000. The entire unit with the white cord is a feast to the eyes. They look impeccable.

    Accessories – 5/5
    Silicon Carrying case:
    We get a very premium and stylish silicon carrying case that looks great, feels great, and they don’t occupy a lot of space either. They have an unconventional design. It looks like a hollow black bowl of rubber, on the outside we have the Final logo, on the bottom is the flap to open and secure the case, three protruding tabs help to keep them fastened. It has an interesting locking mechanism as well that avoids a zipper. The case is so small that it can hold just one unit comfortably.
    Karabinger: The case also has this facility to deploy a coupling link, which is part of the accessories, so we can fasten them to our belt loops to carry the earphones around. This is pretty cool and can save a pant pocket when you are out and about.
    Silicon tips: 5 sizes of tips, with the stems having grooves or stripes which have tight clamping force. The grooves enable flexibility to adapt and angle into the ear canals a bit. These tip stems are also colour coded to indicate L/R, and different sizes.
    Ear hooks: They also provide a super slim set of transparent ear hooks that are flexible and are extremely comfortable as well.

    So much thought an effort has been put into each component to satisfy the spending customer. This feels like five-star treatment and I feel royale.

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    Isolation & Sound leakage – 3.5/5

    Isolation is left wanting a little. Not as bad as open/semi open earphones, but you can hear speeding cars even with the music on. Sound leakage is not a point of concern even in quiet environments

    Fit – 5/5
    Fit is easy and comfortable. Around-the-ear and conventional straight-down wear is compatible.

    Microphonics – 3/5
    Wearing them around-the-ear eliminates touch noise, more so with the ear hooks. Straight down, it is quite present.

    Before we get to the sound:
    You must know that i don’t listen to trance, EDM, or bassy stuff, no metal stuff, so, take my opinion about the extremes of the sound spectrum, and speed,etc., with a grain of salt, as they are just based on the kind of music I listen to- namely Jazz, blues, some progressive rock from the 70s/80s. However, to give a fair review, i include some of my favourite Daft Punk, Tool, NIN, and some Pop songs among my test tracks.

    Before we get to the sound, let’s look at Final’s statement about their tuning:
    This is applicable to both E4000 and 5000:
    “We’ve carried out the sound design of this product based on the latest acoustic engineering and psychological research results. Using the usual method of sound creation whereby high frequencies are given a sharp peak and certain high frequencies are emphasized, you’re given to feel vivid sound when you first listen, but because of this peak, the anteroposterior ranges are masked and hard to hear. With the E series, making the arc of the frequency response smooth overall ensured that no bands were masked, and we achieved high resolution. Compared to E3000/E2000, a purer, subtler sound is achieved.

    *To heighten the resolution across all ranges, acoustic pressure has been lowered. When you listen, the sound appears laid-back; turning the volume up gradually while assimilating this subtlety affords the user a comfortable listening experience. This product is one whose merits become more apparent the longer you use it.”

    Final says that E5000 is an upgrade of E3000; while E4000 is an upgrade of E2000.

    Before the actual sound, let me brief you on my immediate impressions and experience:

    Let me start by saying that these earphones are tuned like no other.

    Upon my first listen, I noticed that the bass was really overwhelming, making the sound signature really warm, even dark. I generally tend to prefer brighter phones rather than warmer ones. I was initially taken aback by this pervading warmth and lushness in the sound signature. It reminded me of the FX1100 that I owned some time back, only with greater bass that envelops the entire soundstage, with tamed highs. I’ve never heard something like this. But then, I took some time to understand what their tuning philosophy is, and I went back to the site to check out what they have to say (Posted above). They say that the signature is tuned to be smooth and laid-back. They say that any peak in the highs are attenuated to present a smooth frequency response. In all the measurement graphs that you generally see, you would notice a number of peaks and valleys after 1KHz or 2 Hhz up until 10 or 16 KHz. Here, Final has basically introduced zero peaks in the measured response. Imagine a straight line from 20 to 20 Khz in the measured frequency response (not perceived). That’s what they have aimed for with the E series. They suggest to gradually turn up the volume and find the sweet spot where we can say that the highs are lows are in line with one another. This sweet spot for me lies between 30 to 50% volume in HTC 10 depending on the track. This is where I can see the magic unfold. Any more volume, the earphones will not sound good and you will just sink into a pool of lushness. Once you find this sweet spot, run a few songs and let your brain accustom to the signature. Coming from bright earphones and monitorersque signature, I needed quite a bit of brain burn-in.

    Tips: I tried different tips, but I settled back to the stock tips. They work just fine.
    UPDATE: SPINFITS, using spin-fits brings a little brightness into the mix, making them the ideal tips for Final E5000. Stock tips are second best although it is a bit warmer than SpinFits.

    Sound—
    This is how I felt while listening to music with the E5000.

    Imagine sitting in the open spacious bath with steam all around, in the garden of Aphrodite. You tilt your head backwards and relax. A couple of the most luscious, beautiful, Greek muses, Erato and Euterpe, come beside you, one on each side with a silver spoon in their hand, no, let’s make that Stainless Steel spoons. In their spoons is honey- not the gooey kind, but less viscous and fluid. They heat the honey to a lukewarm temperature, a very soothing temperature. Together, at the same time, they pour this honey into your ears, slowly. It’s the sweetest honey in all the worlds. The warmth just comforts your soul. The honey keeps flowing, wave after wave, into your ears. You forget who you are, where you are, what you are doing. The song comes to an end. You remove the earbuds and just sit there with your dropped jaw refusing to shut your open mouth. You can’t remember what song was just playing or how many songs played through.

    Please don’t pour honey into your ears for any reason. The above description is not to be taken literally.

    Bass:
    In the sweet spot, the E5000s bass is spectacular. It goes really deep, and gives you all the rumble that is there in the recording. The dynamic driver really pumps the bass. It is a warm earphone, and the bass is very authoritative. That said, the bass is tight, and has great definition. You can make out every note from that bassline, and that very clearly. They very much play in their position and do not bleed anywhere else. Remember, we’re always in the sweet spot where the volume is rather low. So, this won’t go rattling your brain. Here, you will just hear tight authoritative notes positioned perfectly. There is enough sub-bass here to satisfy hardcore bassheads, but to enjoy the rest of the spectrum they must keep the slam low. Those that love lush signatures will totally dig this signature. This kind of visceral bass is much suited for jazz or classical music where timbre of the cello or the double bass reverbs to extreme satisfaction. Electronic bass can easily go overboard and colour the signature dark. Sweet spot is the key.

    Mids:
    The juicy bass also makes the mids very lush and creamy. With all that bass quantity, I still don’t see it disturbing the stuff going on in the mids. This is because of the layering. The mids play in their own zone and can be heard clearly alongside the bass instruments. The mids just borrow the lush quality from this bass which adds to the timbre. Every instrument sounds real, better than real, in fact. The vocals are so sublime, and full of soul. They add an earthy feel to the voice. You can hear every breath taken. Both male and female vocals are presented very gracefully. Everything sounds so smooth, nothing jumps out, and they all hold strictly their position. The mids are also very detailed and a painted in a very subtle, at the same time vivid, manner. The decay is perfect and it’s just a pleasure to listen to.

    Treble:
    In the sweet spot, the treble is very clear and any sound in this spectrum is presented in a magical way. There is absolutely no noise to be noticed. Not a single spot taints that black canvas of the soundstage. Every chime, every bell, rings clearly and disappears into the blackness that it came from. Every sound in this region is a stroke of colour in that black stage. The micro-details, as well, are presented in the same subtle, yet vivid, manner. But to enjoy all this you are restrained to your sweet spot. If you increase the volume, the bass will take over and the sublime presentation is tainted. The instrument positioning is stellar. The more I listen to, I more I feel that the treble and the micro-details are very sharply presented, and I find them lacking in no way. To feel this, you need to spend some time with these earphones and burn your brain to the signature.

    Soundstage is as wide as you get from a closed IEM. Good depth of field is displayed. Very 3 dimensional and dynamic soundstage. The soundstage can present classical music and complex passages very well due to it's great layering capabilities.

    Comparisons
    Let’s do some very brief comparisons to get to know the flagship of the Final E series better.

    Comparing these to any other earphones is a challenge per se. The E5000 sounds so smooth that I find it hard to match the sounds with the other earphone. I generally settle for the sweet spot of Earphone B vs sweet spot of E5000.

    IMAG2457.jpg

    Final E5000 vs Final Audio Design Heaven IV
    First, let’s compare this with one of the Heaven series BA earaphones. It would have been much interesting with Heaven VI, but unfortunately I own only the Heaven IV. This should do, anyway.

    Switching from E5000 to Heaven IV, you will notice that the Heaven IV is far brighter in comparison. Remember, Heaven IV is actually one of the warmer BA earphones in the market. The bass of the Heaven IV is so low it appears anaemic and lacking in comparison. The E5000s bass hits harder and goes deeper, and are very tight. This paints a far darker picture overall with the E5000. The details in music are very apparent with the BA driver of Heaven IV. The E5000 presents all the details in a very subtle and delicate manner. Every detail is hidden in the soundstage and delicately presented amid the lush music. The cymbals and hi-hats are way in the background in the E5000 vs very present and on top with the Heaven IV.

    Final E5000 vs Piano Forte II
    Another one from final, the piano forte is also known to have a non-conventional tuning.
    Again, I got only the basic offering from this series. So, let’s check them out.

    PF II also comes across as brighter in comparison. PFII, it must be noted is an open earbud type phone with no sub-bass impact whatsoever. However, they have one of the best vocals I’ve hear to-date and have a wide soundstage, very out of the head. The hi-hats in the PF II are again up high and details are presented fairly up front. E5000s are again dark in comparison, and everything is so smooth, subtle and tight. Everything you heard with PFII is also present here, but are very delicately presented.

    Final E5000 vs ATH CKR100
    Again, similar difference. Smooth and warm vs brighter with spiked highs. CKR100 has it’s upper mids pushed up to the front as well. E5000s dig deeper and is tighter. Subtle presentation vs forward presentation.

    Final E5000 vs Donguri Syou Kurenai vs Sony EX800
    Similar again, E5000 is super warm, deeper bass, subtle and smooth presentation. Donguri and EX800 are brighter incomparison, have very present highs with great up-front clarity. EX800 is warmer than the Donguri, but brighter compared to E5000. EX800 has a very wide soundstage as well.

    To put things into perspective, imagine a scenery. Sun rises at 6 AM. FAD IV, shows you how it looks at 9 AM when the sun has risen and it’s nice and bright. Etymotics would be noon. Sony and Donguri give you the picture when it’s around 2 PM. Piano forte shows the same picture when it is 4 PM. And the E5000 will be the picture when it is 6:30 PM, sun sets at 6 PM. (edited the timings)

    Please note that A-B comparisons have really no meaning because of the super smooth response of E5000. This essentially demands one to be psychologically tuned to the tuning of the earphones. Meaning, listening a while and easing into the signature. Still, this is done here just to give you an idea about the tuning.

    Another one earphone that I have which possesses a similar dark signature is the Flare Audio R2A. But I will reserve this comparison only for E4000 since they fall in the same price category. This will be up in the next few days.

    Let’s do some essential comparisons within the E series.

    cut_final3.jpg

    Final E3000 vs Final E5000
    Final E5000 is the direct upgrade to Final E3000. Final says compared to the E3000 “a purer and subtler sound is achieved” in the E5000. Let’s see how they compare side by side.

    The E5000 digs deeper into the sub-bass region in comparison, and rumbles more readily. The E3000 has authoritative bass as well, but isn’t so deep and also isn’t so tight as the E5000. The E3000 also has a little more presence in the treble, whereas the E5000 is much, much smoother. Although subtle, clarity is better with the E5000. Only, noticing it is not so easy in comparison. Instrument positioning is also better and more localised in the E5000. For those who already own the E3000, if you prefer better definition and more sub-bass rumble at the cost of smoother treble, you can go for the upgrade. E5000 is also a touch warmer due to the smoothed higher registers.

    Final E5000 vs Final E4000
    Let’s see how the E5000 stands alongside the E4000, it’s cousin.

    E4000s bass is tighter than the E3000, but the sub bass impact and quantity is lower than the E5000. E5000 goes much deeper and has significantly greater rumble. The mids appear forwarded in the E4000 due to the slightly recessed sub-bass (in comparison). Mids and vocals, as a result, are more transparent and present in the E4000. In E5000, the mids appear subdued in comparison, slightly warmer, also you can perceive better tightness and micro-definition in the E5000. Instrument separation is better in E5000 as a result. Details are subtler in E5000. Vocals are forwarded and sound mesmerising in the E4000s. They float to the top and tease you plenty. If you love mids and vocals, E4000 is the best of the bunch. If you want the best of definition and the deepest sub bass impact, and you are OK with some extra warmth, then E5000 will give you no regrets.

    How many times have I used the word “tight” to describe the E5000s sound? I’ve never felt this tightness, precision, and thick note presentation in another IEM, and this can be felt throughout the frequency spectrum. I see this as the defining quality of the IEM. This quality is exactly why I keep coming back to the E5000, in spite of its warm and relaxed presentation. I can’t get this anywhere else.

    Overall Sound rating of Final E5000:
    Vocals 4.5/5
    Soundstage 4/5
    Instrument Separation 5/5
    Details 5/5
    Timbre 5/5

    Conclusion –
    Final really opened new doors of perception for me with this tuning. With this “Less is More” approach towards the high frequencies. I never knew that music could be so relaxing and still have such great clarity. I never thought I’d write a positive review for a warm sounding IEM. I would definitely suggest all audiophiles to give the E series a chance. They aren’t asking half a grand for this beauty. It’s perfectly priced. You’re not going to get in-your-face details, you’re not going to get splashy highs showing off extreme clarity, playing with sibilance. But if you give these a chance you will be rewarded with a sublime musical experience with subtle, magical, highs that will fill you with great pleasure.

    DISCLAIMER : Please note that i was not paid or pushed by anyone to write this positive review. Everything written here is my very honest opinion about these earphones.
    1. View previous replies...
    2. iems0nly
    3. Focux
      Hi, how do u find the E5000 against the IE80 considering both are single DD? Thanks!
      Focux, Aug 5, 2018
    4. iems0nly
      @Focux Sorry, haven't tried the IE80. But, I believe the IE80 have brighter highs, and more V-shaped sound signature (from what i remember reading about them)
      iems0nly, Aug 18, 2018