Kefine Klanar 14.5mm Planar Driver

Ianbanz

New Head-Fier
Kefine Klanar Planar iem
Pros: • 14.5mm Planar Driver: The use of a large planar driver ensures rich, detailed sound reproduction across the frequency spectrum, lush and smooth lows to crisp highs.

• CNC Precision Machining: Precision machining enhances the durability and aesthetics of the IEM, ensuring a high-quality finish and precise fit for optimal sound isolation.

• Ergonomic Design: The ergonomic and lightweight design ensures a comfortable fit for extended listening sessions, minimizing fatigue and maximizing enjoyment.

• Exquisite Shell Design: Subtle and elegantly designed shell not only enhances aesthetics but also contributes to improved sound resonance and isolation.
Cons: • Can be bright on some tracks and might not appeal to treble sensitive.
Specifications:

Driver Type: Planar driver
Driver Size: φ14.5 mm
Frequency Response: 20 Hz - 40 kHz
Sensitivity: 105 dB +/- 3 dB
Impedance: 16 Ω +/-15%
Cable Length: 1.2 m +/-0.2 m
Plug Size: φ3.5 mm SE or φ4.4 mm BA
Weight: 6.3 g
The Kefine Klanar Planar IEM is a compelling blend of style, performance, and comfort. With a sleek, CNC machined shell design, these in-ear monitors exude durability and aesthetic appeal.
2.jpg

4.jpg

Powered by a 14.5mm planar driver, the Klanar delivers an immersive audio experience. Its frequency response of 20 Hz - 40 kHz ensures rich, detailed sound across the entire spectrum. With emphasis on mid bass it adds depth to the low end, while the forward mids amplify vocal clarity, making every lyric pop with precision.
8.jpg

Kefine Klanar Planar IEM somewhat of a W shape sound signature with a focus on mid-bass, forward mids, and extended treble, it delivers an engaging listening experience with nuanced details and clarity.
What truly sets the Klanar apart is its bright and energetic treble without sibilance or harshness. The well-extended highs bring out intricate details in your music, enhancing every note with crispness and sparkle. listening to delicate strings or punchy percussion, the Klanar captures the nuances with finesse and speed.

7.jpg

In terms of technical performance, the Klanar excels. It offers good macro and micro details, allowing you to uncover layers of instrumentation with clarity with a moderate-sized soundstage offers above average instrument separation but interestingly i find the single DD Kefine Delci more holographic and has better imaging compared to the klanar.
Comfort is paramount during extended listening sessions, and the Klanar delivers with its lightweight construction and ergonomic fit. The 1.2-meter cable provides ample freedom of movement, while the option for both 3.5mm SE and 4.4mm BA plugs ensures compatibility with a wide range of devices.

11.jpg

Sound Signature:

Sub-Bass Presence: While the sub-bass is present and responsive when called upon, it leans more towards the mid-bass region. This ensures a solid foundation for the sound without sacrificing clarity or detail.

Mid-Bass Focus: The mid-bass takes center stage, providing punchy and well-defined bass notes that add depth and impact to the overall sound. It offers a satisfying low-end presence without overpowering the other frequencies.
Forward Mids and Vocals: The mids are forward and expressive, placing vocals and instruments at the forefront of the soundstage. This emphasis on the midrange adds warmth and intimacy to vocals, making them shine in every track.
Bright, Extended Treble: The treble is bright and well-extended, contributing to the overall clarity and airiness of the sound. It adds sparkle and detail to high-frequency instruments, enhancing the overall listening experience with good clarity detail without sounding harsh or sibilant.
Soundstage and Imaging:

Average Soundstage: The soundstage of the Klanar Planar IEM is average, providing a decent sense of space and separation between instruments. While it may not offer the expansive soundstage of some other models, it still provides an immersive listening experience.
Good Instrument Separation and Layering: Despite the average soundstage, the Klanar Planar IEM excels in instrument separation and layering. Each instrument occupies its own space within the soundstage, allowing for clear and distinct audio reproduction.
Average Imaging: In comparison to the single dynamic driver Kefine Delci, the imaging of the Klanar Planar IEM is average. While it accurately positions instruments and vocals within the soundstage, it may not offer the same level of precision and detail as its little single dd brother kefine delci.

Conclusion:

The Kefine Klanar Planar IEM offers a balanced sound signature with a focus on mid-bass, forward mids, and extended treble. With its punchy bass, expressive vocals, and detailed treble, it delivers an engaging listening experience across various music genres. While its soundstage may be as expansive as some planar iems on the market, its strong instrument separation and layering ensure a captivating audio experience. Overall, the Klanar Planar IEM is a solid choice for those seeking a versatile and well-rounded sound signature with excellent planar technicalities.
  • Like
Reactions: Colin5619

SherryLion

New Head-Fier
A Mix Of S12 And Timeless With Better Definition And Clarity! The Kefine Klanar
Pros: 1. Nicely done bright V-shape tuning
2. Detailed and airy treble
3. Clear and thorough mid range
4. Engaging and rumbling bass
5. Great technicalities
Cons: 1. Metallic sounding in the upper frequencies
2. Can be lean in the mid range for some people

Review Of The Kefine Klanar


IMG_3929.jpeg


Introduction


Kefine, a new Chinese company that I recently learned about, has dabbled in planar technology and produced a planar IEM with their debut known as the Klanar, which is their first self-developed planar IEM. I recently received the Kefine Klanar for review, so before we go any further, I'd like to clarify a few points.

IMG_3920.jpeg


Disclaimer


*This is a review unit, courtesy of Concept Kart. All thanks to them for providing. 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 “Klanar.”
*I am using different Ear-tips for convenience and better versatility.
*Finally, I will only evaluate the Klanar based on their performance, even though I will explain how it feels and seems physically and aesthetically.


Specification


The Klanar features a planar driver architecture that includes a 14.5mm planar with a PET composite diaphragm. The shells are manufactured using 5 axis CNC precision machining from a single piece of aluminum. When it came to the shell design, I had no complaints about the fit or comfort, however wearing it for an extended period of time caused soreness at the opening of the ear canal. The cable given feels adequate for the price, since it is a silver-plated copper wire with two pin connections on one end and a 4.4mm termination on the other. The IEM comes with a sturdy carrying bag and a selection of eartips in various sizes and kinds. According to the technical specs, the impedance is 16 Ohms and the sensitivity is 105dB. The frequency response ranges from 20Hz to 40kHz.

1711042050074.png

***Above Image Credit***

Sound


The sound of the Klanar leans towards a lean sound which is quite a bright V-shaped tuning rather than a neutral one. The clarity and details are the focus with ample amount of engaging bass which makes it quite an intriguing IEM for the price. I have heard many such Planar IEMs using a full range planar and I do believe that this is not something new or unique but more refined in certain areas while a little striking in others. If I were to relate such a response I would take the example of the Timeless which also had somewhat the same sound profile. The emphasis in the vocal region and the quality of the planar driver makes them sound enticing and subjectively either lean or very detailed and clear sounding. Yes the bass is also good for a Planar although the sound is more accurate than sounding warm. I do find hints of that wet response out of the Planar drivers but it is very much improved from the likes of the Timeless. Let’s diss more about sound into details.

IMG_3927.jpeg


Treble


The treble range sounds surprisingly spacious and airy, with the elements seeming to breathe freely and stretch far, which contributes to the sound being full and realistic. However, the kind of timbre used is not appropriate because the metallic aura is audible in the notes that come from the string instruments in particular.There is no doubt that the clarity and details were to be questioned, but I do find that the response is more true to how it is supposed to sound by the frequency graph. The upper treble region holds a nice extended region that, in my opinion, allows the vocal and the instruments to sound full and complete. Even with that airy presence, the response is more linear, larger, and enclosed in your surroundings. In essence, there are notes wherever you look. The notes sound more relaxed in the lower treble area, which manages energy considerably better and produces a pleasing tone. Once more, the instruments and voices are quite clear and detailed, but the note weight and density are improved. Regarding how it compares to its rivals, I would say that these provide a somewhat lower tone in exchange for a greater grasp of details, and I haven't had a tuned planar IEM as of late. As a result, the treble area is presented in a detailed, airy, and metallic manner overall.

Mid Range


When it comes to the mid range, the notes are delivered forward and crisply; the instruments and singers sound distinct and lively while appearing to be closed in. It's the ideal setup for a close-sounding IEM because of how the notes are positioned. The singers and instruments seem crisper and richer in the upper mid range, which reverberates with the same intensity as the lower treble but permits a more substantial presentation. Even if the presentation has been advanced once more, the notes' warmth and richness are still missing. The female vocals in complicated songs are tiring to listen to because of the wispiness and sibilance that are occasionally added. This makes the music appear lean and much too front in my opinion. However, the problems were fixed while retaining the accuracy and detail of the notes with a few eartip changes. Even if its presence is hazy, the lower mid range seems muted and a tad too clean for my liking. The lean character that is introduced in the upper mid range is a result of the muted quality of the lower mid range. As a result, the mid range area is presented generally in a clear, thorough, and lean manner.

Bass


Regarding the bass area, I am quite happy with both the amount and quality of the bass's presence. There is just the right amount of bass to make the music seem controlled yet powerful. The sub bass range is highlighted, and because of its deep extension, it provides a nice sense of rumbling in the ear canal and makes punches seem more powerful than they would on a typical planar system. The smashes and thumps had a good approach in the mix, however even if the mid bass area is sufficiently present, I find the amount and influence in the mix lacking.Once more, everything comes down to personal taste in tone and bass type. In terms of amount and quality of bass, I think Klanar performs significantly better than other planar IEMs. I recently evaluated some planar IEMs, and while the tone quality of those IEMs seemed more advanced, I have no complaints about the Klanar in terms of details or note clarity. Overall, the bass area is presented in a powerful, rumbling, yet controlled manner.

Technical Performance


The details, resolution, and speed are all things that the Planar IEMs that I have heard and reviewed never seemed like they had to sacrifice. In addition, I have lately seen some warm-sounding planars, which are a joy to talk about in more depth.

IMG_3923.jpeg


Soundstage, Sound Imaging & Separation


The notes are positioned and placed in a way that makes the stage sound distinct, more holographic than stereo even if it is closer. I am able to identify the precise locations of the notes because of the imaging and separation that makes the tones distinct and crisp.

Speed & Resolution


Both macro and micro features surface smoothly and expressively, demonstrating the excellent resolution. A very clear and resolved presentation is made possible by the fast assault and decay of the notes.

Sound Impressions


Sources


Sony WM1A - When listening to Klanar with the WM1A, the reaction seems to suggest that the stage has become larger and more spacious, and the singers retain their distinctive qualities while sounding more at ease and detailed. In contrast, the bass seems subdued, but its presence is more expansive and rich, which enables the mid bass to take up more space in the mix and sound warmer. Overall, both ends of the answer seem satisfied and thorough.

IMG_3914.jpeg


Tempotec V6 - When listening to Klanar on the V6, the midrange response seems more upfront and transparent, highlighting how personal and alluring the voices are to hear. The instruments also sounded closer and clearer, and there was a greater sense of focus on the intricacies and clarity. The bass felt more in control, while the treble had a more exuberant tone.

IMG_3915.jpeg


AFUL Snowynight - while listening Klanar with Snowynight, the response seems lot better positioned which helps in showing the intricacies and the impression of layering and imaging. Also the mid range sounded richer and better articulated which allowed the voices to seem more isolated and better stated. The bass had a relaxed, controlled tone.

IMG_3874.jpeg


Colorfly CDA-M2 - While listening to Klanar with the M2, the response sounds more present back and forth, with a more roomy presence of the vocals. The energetic and metallic presence is tamed, allowing for a more smoothed and clear response, so the overall response sounds much more pleasant and dynamic in my opinion.

IMG_3919.jpeg


Tracks


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
Wayne - Always Been You
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
Goyte - 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


Conclusion


To sum up, the Klanar is excellent in terms of clarity and information relative to the cost. I am aware that certain planar IEMs may have similar sounds, but the technology and driver type employed here undoubtedly contribute to a more sophisticated sound. Therefore, I endorse them.

IMG_3928.jpeg
Last edited:
  • Like
Reactions: Colin5619

ngoshawk

Headphoneus Supremus
Pros: Ambitious effort
Smoother character
Affordable
Cons: Not the most musical
Sounds artificial in many areas
Not really better than competitors
Kefine Klanar ($119): A new kid on the planar block.

7fCLVlh.jpg


Klanar

Audio46

HiFiGo

*Discounted to $89USD currently

Intro:


The Klanar is a new planar IEM from Kefine, Dongguan Kefine Electronics Technology, CO; Ltd. Using a 14.5mm “driver” with your choice of 3.5mm se or 4.4bal, it enters the ultra-competitive sub-$150usd market with high hopes.

The unit was sent to me pre-launch for an honest assessment. The words are mine and mine alone. I thank Kefine for the sample and know it may be asked to be returned at any time. Unless specified, it is mine to keep. The unit is now on sale.

UeVytDc.jpg


Specs:

Transducer
type: Planar wired IEM
Transducer size: 14.5mm
Frequency response: 20Hz-40kHz
Sensitivity: 105dB+/-3dB
Impedance: 16ohm
Connector: 0.78mm 2-pin, covered
Cable length: 1.2M


In The Box:

Klanar
Case
7 sets of silicon tips (UV-large hole, silicon-bass in s, m, l)
Velcro cinch wrap
Dual wrap cable


QBh6ttQ.jpg


Gear Used:

Astell & Kern AK120 Titan


Music

Jazz
David Bowie
B.B. King



Unboxing:

A white sliding sleeve shows the Klanar is slightly larger-than-life size on the front and the measurements on the back. Sliding the sleeve off, you are met with a plain black box. Taking the top off showcases the IEM on top, with the cable attached, and wound through medium-soft foam to the case on the bottom half.

Inside the case is the rest of the cable along with a plastic bag of tips. The case is longer than deep and tall; and as a result, winding of the wire with IEM attached results in longer loops. Otherwise, the case is hard to zip closed. The zipper is hard enough, without that happening. Another 1/2'’ of height in the case would have made for a much easier-to-use case, without having to worry about smashing either the cable, tip, or IEM.


Build/Finish/Fit:

Since the Klanar uses a rather large driver in the 14.5mm planar unit, you would rightly expect the unit to be large. The Klanar isn’t. Stemming from a thinly shaped (0.2mm in some places) 5-axis CNC machined single-piece aluminum shell, the Klanar is not only light at 12.5g per earbud but small in shape. Fit as a result was quite good, with the longer nozzle inserting deep into my canal.

Two vent holes on the inner sides allow for air dispersion, with a tasteful-looking flat faceplate, laden with the simple Kefine name on it. Understated elegance. A longer hard plastic bent towards the back allows for the cable to exit the earbud higher, and the memory plastic sheath then takes effect. Although this arrangement made for a bit higher bend on my ear, the supple cable laid nicely behind my ear.

The materials look well-made and above cheaper plastic IEMs, which may adorn this price point. The cable color of black and copper (two wires in each), adds to the mature look. Subdued might be a better word. The dark color of cable and IEM help keep that theme.

Slight microphonics are heard through the cable, but only when moving quite a bit or actually thumping on the cable. That cable is a four-wire variety with 54 cores in each. Two wires (the black casing ones) are 0.05mm silver-plated Litz copper, while the other two are OFC copper of the same size and number. The cable was of good length, but another 6” (15cm) would not hurt for pocket use.

The Klanar fit flush into my ear, which was nice, and added to the excellent isolation using the stock medium bass tips.

eIsy7L6.jpg


Technology:

The Klanar uses a 14.5mm planar driver, with a PET composite diaphragm for speedy response. An N55 magnet rounds out the closed driver unit. As mentioned above, the CNC machined single aluminum piece not only makes for a lightweight shell but a smaller one, too. This definitely aids in the fit. With a sensitivity of 105 dB and a lower impedance of 16 Ohms, the Klanar is also easy to drive.

4MFQFeL.jpg


Sound:

Summary:

The Klanar is promoted as natural and balanced. Acoustic instruments are supposed to sound lifelike as a result. And mostly they do. Jazz piano, sax, or bass sound like you are present in the club. Bass is of good quality, with decent quality; but not as much deep extension as the literature promotes. The bass provides good weight to the notes, but I would not call it authoritative. Smooth mids and a good treble extension make for a pleasantly smooth signature, without much effort. All of the above is tip and depth insertion dependent, but generally within the same sphere of reference.

moar:

Promoted as one of if not the smallest planar IEM units on the market, I could wear the Klanar for hours without bother. Isolation was tip dependent, but very good, which gave me a better grasp of the sound signature.

The bass does have good weight, but it cannot compete with a dynamic driver of the same price range for sheer punch. That weight also translates into an accurate representation of instruments in the low range. I found upright bass’ to be quite good in which to listen as part of jazz recording solos. While sub bass was lacking overall, the sound was good due to the smooth presentation and enough detail to keep me involved.

The mids come across as detailed and pushed slightly forward, but not upward. Piano notes along with sax came across as realistic and natural, if not completely organic. The smooth character while presenting good detail and clarity also lacked a bit of note weight. Not enough to really bother me, but piano solos took on an almost isolated texture, which was good for the solo, but slightly disconnected. It really did not bother me, though.

The treble hit my sweet spot, without any harshness and that continued smooth character. The definition of cymbal hits was lacking, but if I had my preference, it would be for a treble, which does not grate on me. Cymbal crest hits seem almost digital-sounding and reserved. Detail was lacking, but here it is better to look at the whole, instead of the parts.

lwV85Lg.jpg


The soundstage was fairly wide with an out-of-head experience and good height; but not great. Depth seemed a bit lacking as well, making for a wider, shallower stage. Not bad, and good for instrumental pieces, which take up a large stage, but with not as much depth as I would have liked. As a result, instrumentation was good, with separation better. Working together this made for a smooth character, but lacking a bit of definition in overall signature.

The smooth timbre of the Klanar makes for a natural-sounding planar IEM. This provided me with a nice mellow characteristic only punctuated by the occasional lapse in the upper mid and lower treble area. The definition was left a bit wanting there as a result.


finale:

Kefine is a new start-up IEM manufacturer in the heart of the Shenzhen region of China. As a result, there are a multitude of other brands close at hand. This provides plenty of competition for the brand, and there are other planar IEMs out with which to compete.

I found the Klanar to be acceptable, but unspectacular in any area. The smooth character makes for an almost niche-defined style of listening. Jazz sounds good but with the shortcomings mentioned above. I did not mind knowing the unit’s price.

If you are looking for a detail-oriented IEM, you should look elsewhere. It isn’t that there is a lack of details present, but the focus is elsewhere, instead. There is enough vibrancy to the smooth character to make up for the lack of detailed sound, but do not expect top-tier clarity. That isn’t in the cards.

The Klanar is hard to define. It is affordable (but in a brutally packed price bracket). It is very well built (as are most nowadays). The fit is excellent and flush without bother. The smoothness of sound did draw me in somewhat, but I feel that really isn’t enough for most genres. This is good for jazz, or female vocal music, which relies upon smoothness for character. But that may not be enough. You will have to decide.

Thank you again to Kefine for the review sample of the Klanar. It can be found at the links above, but you will want to compare it to others in the price range. You may end up with others. Or you may end up with the Klanar. It is your choice.

E5Ebk35.jpg
Last edited:
  • Like
Reactions: cliffmeister

Kindlefirehditaly

New Head-Fier
Kefine Klanar Review: A Promising Start
Pros: Solid build quality
Quite good isolation
Nice flexible and light cable
Lush vocals
Good bass rumble and slam
Stringed instruments got some nice weight
Planar V-Shape
Wide soundstage
Great price
Super easy to drive on 3.5SE (slightly better on Balanced)
Cons: Packaging needs improvement (Not important)
Missing manuals and QC/warranty cards
Quite anonymous design (not really a cons)
Needs better tips
Slightly Driver flex sometimes (same as MP145)
Lacking treble sparkles and airs (there could be more but gets better on balanced cable and better tips)

Disclaimer:​


IMG_20231122_122514-scaled.jpg


Before the Kefine Klanar launch, I was unaware of this brand. I want to express my gratitude to Collin at Kefine for sending me one of their Klanars for review. As a new brand, they chose to follow the trend of planar drivers and quickly presented a model that used a driver that was exactly the same size as the Hidizs Mp145. With discounts that sometimes fall below $100 USD, the price is extremely competitive and puts it among the least expensive planars available.


879654d963c57e8fcf328331ce1597de.jpg


However, the review will still be 100% honest and, in no way, biased.


I’m not an audiophile; I’m just a guy that likes to test out different IEMs and DACs and spends a lot of time listening to music.


So I’m not going to use super-technical words to review it, but I will do my best to describe it.


Tech Specs:​

2c5f10ecf294cc2ef609aafb92620f0d.jpg
33d7badd89b9ea633c2807878c532bfb.jpg
96cd928b4930165b844439ee252f0977.jpg
964a1f4cd98187f53bc384d29dad0512.jpg
7984bfc71af59d8013b01f7edf789ad6.jpg
290611cb5325f34d0f21580ad70d3134.jpg
565406ccecd3a1234b3d9eb0e1038625.jpg
f77413119390da86f869796c67facaca.jpg

  • CNC aluminium Shell
  • Impedance: 16Ω±15%.
  • Sensitivity: 105dB±3dB.
  • Frequency Response Range: 20Hz–40kHz
  • Connector Type: 2-pin connectors.
  • Termination: 3.5mm single-ended or 4.4mm balanced (choose while purchasing).
  • Weight: 12.5grams.
  • Price: 109 USD full price, 89 USD sale price

Packaging:​


The box for the Kefine Klanar is quite simple. I would dare say that the packaging is perhaps a little bulky and that opening the box is not very smooth. Nothing serious.

IMG_20231106_135826-scaled.jpg
IMG_20231106_135833-scaled.jpg
IMG_20231106_140027-scaled.jpg
IMG_20231106_140031-scaled.jpg
IMG_20231106_140040-scaled.jpg

The range of accessories is good for the price!


  • Cable with Silver-Plated Copper and OFC copper wire
  • 7 sets of tips: standard and wide bore tips
  • Carrying case
IMG_20231106_140231-scaled.jpg
IMG_20231122_121613-scaled.jpg
IMG_20231122_122940-scaled.jpg
IMG_20231122_122900-scaled.jpg
IMG_20231122_122928-scaled.jpg
IMG_20231122_122848-scaled.jpg
IMG_20231122_122951-scaled.jpg

Despite all the tips included, which are not bad in quality but very standard, I decided to mount my Divinus Velvet tips directly. I think the stock ones don’t do them justice, especially those with the narrow bore, which makes them lose soundstage, but since we’re talking about a 100 USD IEM, I switched to the Kbear 07, which also does greater justice to the Klanar.

IMG_20231123_113813-scaled.jpg
IMG_20231123_113828-scaled.jpg
IMG_20231123_113848-scaled.jpg
IMG_20231123_114102-scaled.jpg
IMG_20231123_114105-scaled.jpg
IMG_20231123_114717-scaled.jpg
IMG_20231123_114736-scaled.jpg
IMG_20231123_114745-scaled.jpg
IMG_20231123_114834-scaled.jpg

The included cable vaguely resembles the quality of Nicehck or Kbear cables; the same situation applies to the carrying case. Much better than even more expensive headphones.


Design/Build quality:​

IMG_20231106_140158-scaled.jpg
IMG_20231106_140751-scaled.jpg
IMG_20231106_140629-scaled.jpg
IMG_20231122_122633-scaled.jpg
IMG_20231106_140723-scaled.jpg
IMG_20231106_140703-scaled.jpg
IMG_20231106_141027-scaled.jpg
IMG_20231122_122605-scaled.jpg
IMG_20231106_141050-scaled.jpg
IMG_20231106_141113-scaled.jpg
IMG_20231106_140930-scaled.jpg
IMG_20231122_122545-scaled.jpg
IMG_20231122_122411-scaled.jpg
IMG_20231106_141135-scaled.jpg
IMG_20231106_140829-scaled.jpg

As you can see from the photos, the design of the Kefine Klanar is very simple and perhaps anonymous. However, if these choices are made to keep the cost low, it is a more than reasonable choice. Furthermore, the materials used are of excellent quality; the shell is CNC machined from aluminum. Inside we find a driver of the same size as the MP145; considering the much more compact dimensions, everything is very solid. I actually think the choice to use a matte finish is excellent; finally, there are no fingerprints. The filter on the nozzle is perhaps the most particular part and is reminiscent of some 7-HZ/Kinera filters. The nozzle has human dimensions and a more than correct angle.


Comfort/Fit:​

IMG_20231123_115515.jpg
IMG_20231123_115329.jpg

Compared to the Letshuoer S12 Pro, they are marginally bigger in terms of size, but there are no positioning issues because of the softer earhook and cable. You will surely find the perfect position with both cable and stock tips. As you will see from the photos, they fit well in my ears. Even after several hours, there was no discomfort either in the ear canal or around the ear.


Sound impression:​


After having listened to the HIDIZS MP145 and the Letshuorer S12 Pro for a long time, the Kefine Klanar at first seemed to me to be positioned between the 2. The bass has a notable rumble, the timbre is warm, and the vocals are very silky and also warm. I must admit, this is really excellent for my tastes. You can’t hear the typical timbre of planars at all; in fact, the bass makes you think it’s a single DD, but it lacks separation slightly in general when it pushes hard on the bass.


The sound comes tremendously close to the previously mentioned planars. With Klanar, the feeling of a nice warm fleece blanket or duvet in front of a fireplace is guaranteed.


Equipment used for the testing:​

Klanar + Muse M4 on 2.5mm

Device:​


  • iMac
  • Redmi Note 7 Snapdragon
  • Poco M4 Pro Mediatek

Software:​


  • Foobar2000 24bit 192kHz (iMac)
  • Amazon music UHD 24bit 96kHz (Both)
  • Tidal Hifi Plus

DAC:​



My impressions are given using mostly the original accessories included in the box.


IMG_20231122_172515-scaled.jpg


Apart from the warmth that the Kefine Klanar gives off in your ears, the other surprising thing is the embarrassing ease with which you can push them with a simple 3.5mm SE output. They have a very high sensitivity, and I must say that they are the first planars that I would recommend, even if you only have a phone. However, if you have a DAC, you will certainly be able to get 100%.


They sounded pretty good out of the box, but I still did about 60 hours of burn-in.


Despite the 100 USD, the quality is very high, but it is a set with a tuning that can appeal to the masses. As an initial choice, they absolutely had to aim for something that everyone would like. Taking the KZ PR2, for example, these sound at least 100 times better and do not necessarily require a DAC to function. Kefine immediately demonstrated that it has the experience to create good-sounding IEMs, and as a first test, they were very good from my point of view.


Tips Rolling?​


As always, my advice is to try all the tips you have at home, and if none satisfy you, then buy new ones. Lately, I’ve been obsessed with the Divinus Velvets, which adapt to every IEM I try them on. You can feel the difference quite a bit; the originals are still good, but the important thing is that you find the perfect seal.


Since they just arrived, I decided to try the DUNU S&S as well. Comfort beyond imaginable; its shape didn’t inspire me, but I must say that they are really excellent. They seem to give a little help to the soundstage.

IMG_20231122_122344-scaled.jpg
IMG_20231122_172455-scaled.jpg

As always, my advice is to try all the tips you have at home, and if none satisfy you, then buy new ones. Lately, I’ve been obsessed with the Divinus Velvets, which adapt to every IEM I try them on. You can feel the difference quite a bit; the originals are still good, but the important thing is that you find the perfect seal. Since the Divinus and DUNU S&S are not the cheapest, I recommend you also look at the Nicehck/Kbear 07.


Cable Rolling?​


I absolutely won’t tell you that it’s worth changing the cable because you won’t hear any differences. Unless there were major quality issues with the previous cable, every new cable practically makes no difference at all. Though the 3.5mm termination that the Kefine Klanar came with is more than sufficient to produce a pleasing sound, if you must purchase them, I suggest going with the balanced cable. As soon as I connected the first cable I had—a 2.5mm Hidiz Balanced cable—the sound opened up and I could hear a higher level of refinement in the low end. We can observe how the driver benefits dynamically from having a larger juice reserve. I advise getting the 4.4mm version of the Klanar if you must order it and already own DACs with balanced outputs.

graph8.png
graph10-1.png

Bass​


The bass is fast, chunky, and really rumbly. I wouldn’t call them bass-heads, but they come remarkably close to that category. If the track requires it and if you turn up the volume, your eardrum bounces together with the driver membrane. The rumble is noticeably emphasized, amplifying the warmth of the tuning. However, it lacks a bit of resolution and separation in some cases. I think the emphasis is a bit extreme, and on complex tracks, it loses some detail, but the result is extremely fun!


Mids​


I must say that this is one of the best vocal IEMs I have ever used; the vocals are really great and really stand out on every track. Although they are slightly overwhelmed by the low frequencies, they still manage to stand out without appearing too recessed. The warmth and vibrancy of both male and female voices are remarkable. You can almost feel their breath because they are so dense, silky, and sinuous. The Klanar experience is unique among other competitors because of the depth with which the voices are rendered.


To my ears, even musical instruments have a very authentic and natural tone. You lose a little bit of finishing on somewhat complex tracks, but I see that opinions on this quality drop vary from tips with a wide hole to ones with a narrow one.


Treble​


On the high frequencies, they were very cautious. The highs certainly don’t tire you, but at the same time, they cause you to lose a bit of macro and micro details. Let’s be clear: nothing serious! If they had been slightly brighter, perhaps they would have become more similar to the Letshuorer S12 Pro. Despite having retained its definition and airiness, it is above average thanks to the use of the planar driver. All peaks are rounded in a harmonious way, and even if something more could have been achieved, I have to admit that I like the result.


Soundstage and Imaging​


The soundstage of the Kefine Klanar manages to become large, much wider, and more articulated than the Letshuoer S12 Pro. Here, the sounds give depth, especially the bass. The image could probably be sharper and clearer; sometimes there is slight confusion as to where the sounds are coming from, especially in the presence of bass rumble. But it’s still average and maybe even slightly better.


Comparison:​


vs Letshuoer S12 Pro

IMG_20231111_105337-scaled.jpg

The Letshuoer S12 Pro is decidedly brighter and more energetic, which could annoy the more sensitive. Even the perception of airiness and brilliance makes macro and micro details stand out more easily than on the Klanar. Klanar has a quieter and less artificial tone. The soundstage seems to be smaller on the S12 Pro.


As for comfort, the Klanar cable is much softer, and the ear-hook doesn’t tend to resist and can be positioned better.


The Klanar requires less power to shine properly; in fact, he only needs 3 volume levels with the Hidizs S9 Pro Plus on iMac; it’s practically a monster of efficiency.


vs Hidizs MP145

IMG_20230902_102534-scaled.jpg

I think the architecture and ventilation system of the Hidizs MP145 are slightly superior; despite the same size driver, the way they sound may seem similar from the graphics, but we have superior layering, imaging, and definition. The soundstage is even bigger and deeper. They sound different due to the solutions adopted internally. The bass is less punchy but, at the same time, has a greater dimension, texture, and an almost 360-degree impact without loading the ear canal with pressure. For my personal taste, they remain on the throne.


Conclusion:​


IMG_20231125_085450-scaled.jpg


Klanar, Nicehck Balanced cable + Tri Clarion Tips

From a new brand, I certainly wouldn’t have expected such a good result on the first try. I am very happy that I had the opportunity to try the Kefine Klanar. Kefine is definitely a brand to consider! What would I change in the future? My advice is to reduce the size of the package, which is very large, improve its opening, and also include fewer tips but with similar quality to the Kbear 07.


The manual is not necessary in paper form; digital format using a QR is also fine; the same goes for the guarantee, but I would include a physical sheet for QC. Personally, if you are looking for warm planar IEMs at an affordable price, these are definitely excellent. I probably like them more than the Letshuoer S12 Pro, and for being the first IEM from an unknown brand, it’s an excellent result. The Klanar adapts excellently to rap, R&B, pop, and EDM music.


Final setup:​


The postman delivered the Nicehck balanced cable and the Tri Clarion Tips from Aliexpress “Choice” section while I was completing the review. I believe I have accomplished the best possible result by fitting both of them onto the Klanar. Obviously, the balanced cable opens up the dynamics a bit; the Tri Clarion, on the other hand, despite the 3 USD paid, has tips with a huge hole (perfect for the Hidizs MP145 nozzle). They seem to smooth out the bass by giving it some air in the treble region. Excellent purchase!


To summarize briefly, a planar IEM with V-shape tuning is very well made, with a full-bodied bass with a nice rumble, mids with the correct tone and thickness, and a very smooth treble (perhaps a little too much for some ears).


Congratulations to Kefine for immediately managing to make an excellent IEM.



Where to buy?​


International:
Linsoul Store
Hifigo Store


AliExpress:
Aliexpress Sellers


USA:
Audio 46 Official site
Hifigo amazon store
cqtek
cqtek
I like your title... as much as the title of my review :wink:

RemedyMusic

100+ Head-Fier
Done right and proper
Pros: minimalist design (subjective)
excellent bass response
proper timbre
controlled but not dull treble
generous eartips
decent cable
lush and weighted midrange
above average technical chops
efficient and easy to drive
price
highly musical
Cons: recessed midrange
cramp protective case (nitpick)
v-shaped tuning (nitpick, subjective, own preference)

INTRODUCTION:​

Kefine, driven by their commitment to offer sophisticated audio equipment at a reasonable and pragmatic price point, coined their name from a fusion of the founder's name and the concept of refinement, resulting in the term "Kefine." On the other hand, the term "Klanar" cleverly integrates "planar" with the letter "K." The company places a premium on quality, treating their products with a level of care akin to parenting. They allocate every cent judiciously, striving to maximize quality while keeping costs in check. Their philosophy asserts that top-notch audio shouldn't come with an exorbitant price tag.

While many companies express similar aspirations in their corporate profiles, the pivotal question lingers: Can Kefine truly deliver superior sound quality with the $119 Klanar? Join me on this journey as we delve into the answer.

FOREWORD:​


  • The gear on hand has undergone at least 10-15 hours of use before it was assessed.
  • No EQ is ever applied in my reviews.
  • For the sake of convenience, I try my best to use a stock setup. Not everyone has access to personal ear tips or cables. If personal ear tips, cables, or accessories are used, you will be notified.
  • As I try to be objective, my claims inevitably will be subjective and biased to my personal preference. I cannot stress more that you should take this with a grain of salt for we have different perceptions to sound and what we hear.



SPECIFICATIONS:​

Maker: Kefine
Model: Klanar
Drivers: 14.5mm planar driver
Impedance: 16ohms
Sensitivity: 105db

PACKAGING & DETAILS:​

EDZ02567.jpg

The packaging of Klanar leans towards simplicity, aligning with their reported environmental consciousness. Housed in a moderately sized box, the front showcases a straightforward image of Klanar, complemented by clean and generic fonts. On the rear, you'll find the customary information about the IEM and the company. Now, let's delve into the contents included in the package.

CASE:​

EDZ02569.jpg

The case comes in a pleasant gray hue with a textured exterior, providing a tactile and visually appealing quality. Internally, the compartment is sleek and compact, requiring a careful arrangement of the cable and Klanar to ensure a snug fit. While a bit more room would have been preferable, the overall functionality remains commendable. Despite the snug fit, the case effectively fulfills its primary purpose of safeguarding the Klanar.

CABLE:​

EDZ02573.jpg

The cable quality stands out remarkably, especially considering the price point. While it might be slightly on the lighter side for my personal preference, its sturdiness and substantial thickness provide reassurance against potential breakage or snapping in the event of an inadvertent pull during on-the-go use.
EDZ02577.jpg

EAR TIPS:​

The inclusion of ear tips is notably generous, especially considering the price range. There are two varieties available. The regular bore contributes to a bass boost but slightly narrows the soundstage, while the wide bore enhances details and treble, expanding the stage.
EDZ02570.jpg

Identifying them at first glance can be a tad challenging as both are uniformly black, necessitating a closer inspection to differentiate based on bore size. The quality falls on the generic spectrum but remains functional. In the course of this review, I opted for the wide bore stock tips.

APPEARANCE:​

Klanar embodies a striking minimalistic design. Crafted from lightweight aluminum alloy, it ensures a comfortable and easy-to-wear experience. The ergonomic design is accommodating to the ears, enhancing overall comfort. Sporting a matte black color, the aesthetic is clean and understated, catering to those who appreciate a minimalist approach. If you're inclined towards simplicity and a sleek appearance, the look and feel of Klanar will likely resonate with you.

EDZ02571.jpg

INTERNALS:​

Klanar features a 14.5mm planar driver, known for its efficiency and notably easy driveability. Amid the initial skepticism surrounding the planar wars, Klanar stands out as a testament to the industry's evolving understanding of effectively implementing these micro planar drivers. After a year of observation, it's evident that companies have gained valuable insights into optimizing the performance of these drivers. Klanar, in particular, emerges as a legitimate player in the planar realm, and we'll delve deeper into its performance shortly.
EDZ02572.jpg

COMFORT:​

Wearing the Klanar is a delightful experience, offering a snug fit that proves particularly suitable for on-stage performances. Extended usage doesn't result in soreness or discomfort, thanks to its ergonomic design. The insertion process is commendable, providing a decent depth for a secure feel. Being vented, the Klanar manages above-average isolation. Notably, even after prolonged use exceeding an hour, there is no discernible pressure build-up, enhancing the overall comfort during extended sessions.

SOUND IMPRESSIONS:​

SOURCES:​

  • FIIO M11 PLUS LTD
  • Centrance Dacport HD
  • Ovidius B1
  • Cayin RU6
  • Apple music subscription
  • Qobuz studio
  • Offline FLACs
kefine klanar graph.jpeg

Measurement courtesy of our good friend Baskingshark

TECHNICALITIES:​


The Klanar offers a stage that, while not the widest among IEMs, avoids a claustrophobic feel and doesn't sound overly in-your-face. Staging gives a sense of more than the conventional 2d presentation. As we speak, I’m listening to a track from Tingvall Trio and I can hear the piano with good depth, plus width and a bit of height all in all.

Imaging is above average, with instruments easily distinguishable and well-placed.

In terms of speed, as expected from a planar, the Klanar delivers a precise and defined attack without overdoing it, providing a sense of realism to the sound.

Where the Klanar truly shines is in its timbre, excelling in delivering one of the most natural-sounding performances for a planar configuration, a realm where planars often face challenges.

The texture leans towards the smoother side, potentially lacking for those seeking an analytical sound. While texture and details are present, they aren't prominently highlighted. In essence, the Klanar isn't a clinical-sounding IEM; instead, it prioritizes musicality.

Equipped with a 4.4mm balanced termination, the Klanar deserves credit for its easy driveability. Despite its on-paper sensitivity of 105dB, I found it manageable even with the old reliable Abigail dongle by Venture Electronics. While highly efficient, the Klanar still benefits from proper amping to truly bring out its best sound.

EDZ02575.jpg

BASS:​

For enthusiasts of deep bass, the Klanar is tailor-made for you. It boasts a V-shaped tuning, delivering a substantial amount of bass with impressive quality. The bass performance is characterized by its speed, snappiness, punchiness, and precision. Planars are renowned for their exceptional bass responses, and the Klanar lives up to this reputation. While there's a slight bleed into the mids due to the quantity of bass, it remains very tolerable.

Klanar's emphasis on sub-bass adds a layer of fun and engagement, keeping the listening experience entertaining. Given the quantity of bass in its tuning, there's a risk of muddiness in sound, but Kefine has done a commendable job in maintaining the cleanliness of the bass, ensuring a satisfying and well-defined low-end.

MIDRANGE:​

As someone who appreciates the midrange, I can understand how this tuning might give you pause. True to expectations, the midrange on the Klanar takes on a recessed sound and nature. While this tuning prevents an overwhelming abundance of details, it does come at the cost of the presence of vocals and instruments. However, the redeeming quality lies in the note weight and body.

Kefine successfully maintains an engaging midrange by ensuring a robust note weight and embodiment. Despite its recessed nature, the midrange didn’t disappoint mid-centric listeners like myself. Vocals retain good presence, and instruments manage to step into the spotlight when called upon, contributing to an overall engaging midrange experience.

TREBLE:​

Planar headphones often have a reputation for being shouty, splashy, and potentially fatiguing to listen to. However, Kefine breaks this mold with the Klanar, offering a highly controlled treble that is devoid of sibilance. This makes it easy to listen to for prolonged periods. While it may not cater to extreme treble enthusiasts, the Klanar still delivers an exciting and sufficient treble experience.

The upper frequencies maintain a non-piercing quality, bringing joy to those with sensitivity to sharp sounds. The treble, though not excessively bright or veiled, offers a balanced and enjoyable listening experience. If you're someone who desires more sparkle, experimenting with different cables and rolling the top end is an option, but personally, I find the treble on the Klanar to be satisfying with a good balance of bite and grit.

COMPARISONS:​

Tangzu Heyday​

Heyday tends toward a more mature, neutral tuning, showcasing well-placed and forward vocals and instruments. However, there are instances where the bass can be perceived as lacking, potentially leading to a less engaging experience for some listeners. The rendering of female vocals is a notable strength for Heyday. In terms of separation and layering, Heyday demonstrates a slight edge.
EDZ02576.jpg

Some individuals might find the upper midrange of Heyday to be thin and slightly harsh, whereas Klanar exhibits better control over the treble, providing a more balanced listening experience. Heyday offers modular cables, providing users with options for 2.5mm, 3.5mm, and 4.4mm terminations, adding versatility to the listening setup.

Both Klanar and Heyday maintain proper timbre, producing natural and authentic sounds. While each has its strengths and characteristics, the choice between them would ultimately depend on individual preferences and priorities in tuning and features.

Letshuoer S12 OG​

It seems that the S12 and Klanar share similar bass quantity, delivering a comparable level of fun. However, when it comes to separation and layering, the S12 holds a slight edge. In terms of timbre accuracy, Klanar takes the lead, providing a more correct representation of sound. The S12, on the other hand, exhibits some harshness and heat in the upper midrange, making Klanar a safer and more comfortable listening experience.

In summary, the Klanar appears to be akin to the S12 but without the hotness in the upper midrange that could potentially introduce a sense of brittleness. This suggests that, in my personal opinion, the Klanar might be how the S12 should have sounded, offering a more balanced and enjoyable listening experience.

TEST TRACKS:​

Here are some tracks I usually listen to when reviewing:

That’s the way of the World by EWF
Africa by TOTO
The Girl in the Other Room by Diana Kral
Balmorhea album All is wild, All is Silent
Sila by Sud
Smooth Escape by D’Sound
Never too Much by Luther Vandross
P.Y.T by Michael Jackson
Ain’t no Sunshine by Eva Cassidy
Shoot to Thrill by AC/DC
Another one bites the Dust by Queen
Good times bad times by Edie Brickell
Alice in Wonderland by Bill Evans
Ain’t it Fun by Paramore
Redefine by Incubus
Far Away by Nickelback
Lovesong by Adele
Lingus by Snarky Puppy
Harvest for the World by Vanessa Williams
Love Bites by Def Leppard
No Such Thing by John Mayer
As by Stevie Wonder
Whip Appeal by Babyface
Ain’t Nobody by Chaka Khan
Futures by Prep
Landslide by Fleetwood Mac
Every Summertime by NIKI
SADE tracks
AC/DC tracks
Queen tracks


And many more… I always listen to High resolution format, being the least quality 16bit/44khz FLACS be it offline or online.
EDZ02578.jpg

VERDICT:​

When the Klanar was en route to me, skepticism lingered in my mind. Despite engaging in thoughtful exchanges with the Kefine representative, doubts crept in, especially considering the V-shaped tuning indicated on the graph—a profile not typically to my liking. The prospect of a recessed midrange added another layer of uncertainty. Against these initial reservations, the Klanar managed to not only satisfy but also connect with me in a genuinely joyous way.

Taking a step back for a more objective view, this V-shaped tuning is executed remarkably well. For those who appreciate this tuning, the Klanar is a treat. It brings forth an excellent bass response, a well-weighted midrange, and a precisely controlled treble, accompanied by technicalities that surpass the average performance. It's essentially a recipe for a well-rounded listening experience. While Kefine might not have ventured into something groundbreaking or unique, they've executed the mainstream with finesse—a product that resonates with a broad audience.

I foresee a strong potential for this company, eagerly anticipating their future releases. I've imparted a piece of advice, urging them not to succumb to the temptation of flooding the market with numerous products. Instead, focusing on quality over quantity could solidify their position. Despite the tuning not aligning perfectly with my preferences, the Klanar adds a unique sound to my collection, earning its place in my rotation.

My heartfelt thanks extend to Collin Yang of Kefine for his graciousness and providing the Klanar for my review. I'd also like to acknowledge Joshua Treinen for facilitating the connection with Kefine. That wraps up this review, and I look forward to catching you on the next one.
L
LikeHolborn
perfect short of 1k phones. except it comes out to 2 3.5? so i cant plug it into the sonata hd 2 dac?
L
LikeHolborn
detail wise. having more sub bass than otherwise and a thin first mids is not. especially if its not forward in the vocals and instruments like u describe it.

cqtek

1000+ Head-Fier
A Promising Start
Pros: Great tuning, oscillating between V and W.
- Clear search for a softer sound in the treble, with powerful, yet less fatiguing bass.
- Remarkable level of construction, with a simplistic but effective design that gives it great ergonomics and fit.
- Good zipped case.
- Very good cable, thick, light, soft and flexible, no need to change it.
- Excellent value for money.
Cons: The first part of the mids is somewhat thin.
- The softness of the treble can penalise the overall timbre.
- Bass has subtle colouring which makes it less deep and sensory.
- Relatively large case for the contents.
- Silicone tips too common.
Introduction

Kefine is a headphone brand from Dongguan (China) that has been "Founded by a team passionate about music. Kefine aims to offer refined headphones and portable audio products for music lovers at an affordable price and the best value for money. The brand name Kefine comes from the combination of the name of the founder Ke and the word "Refine". In the words of the founder himself: "The new brand wants to offer refined audio products for music lovers with a more affordable price and the best price-performance ratio". And their first model is the Klanar, an IEMS with a 14.5mm magnetic planar driver. They have aimed for powerful bass, thanks to its PET composite diaphragm, N55 magnet and custom transducer construction. But also a warm, rich, clean and detailed midrange. However, one of the critical points of the planar IEMS is the treble area. Kefine has deliberately sought to soften the high band so that it is smooth and never harsh, for long, fatigue-free listening. The Klanar's high sensitivity and low impedance make them easy to handle. Naturally, the Klanar is CNC machined from a single piece of aluminium alloy. In order to keep the size of the headphone housing as small as possible, the thinnest housing wall is only 0.2 mm Klanar, which ensures wearing comfort. The design of the housing is also ergonomic and adapts very well to the ears of different people. The capsules have a matt finish with black anodising, while the outer face has a glossy black finish with a white logo. Finally, the cable is made up of four strands combined in pairs. The brown strands are composed of OFC litz wires and the black strands of silver-plated copper litz wires. The intention of this cable is to help create a warm sound with soft treble at the same time, as well as natural and very clear. Kefine has undoubtedly put a lot of effort into making this first model excellent value for money, putting a lot of emphasis on the opinions of enthusiasts about the existing planar IEMS models on the market. Let's see how that effort translates into reality, in my humble opinion.

Kefine Klanar 01_r.jpgKefine Klanar 02_r.jpgKefine Klanar 03_r.jpg

Specifications

  • Driver Type: 14.5mm diameter magnetic planar with PET composite diaphragm and N55 magnet.
  • Frequency Response: 20Hz - 40 kHz.
  • Sensitivity: 105 dB ± 3 dB.
  • Impedance: 16Ω ± 15%.
  • Cable length: 1.2m ± 0.2m.
  • Jack Connector: Choice of either SE 3.5mm or 4.4mm BAL
  • Capsule Connection Type: 2Pin 0.78mm.
  • Weight: 12.6g.

Kefine Klanar 04_r.jpgKefine Klanar 05_r.jpgKefine Klanar 06_r.jpg

Packaging

The box has a medium to large size, its dimensions are 171x140x38mm. Its background is white and on the main side there is a photo of the capsules with their cable. At the top right, there is the name of the brand and at the bottom left, the name of the model and the driver used. The back side has the same information at the top, although, this time, the capsules do not have the cable attached. In the middle are the specifications in Chinese and English. Underneath are the brand name, the logos of the certifications and the web address. This website is in Chinese and there is no English option at the moment.
After removing the outer cardboard, a matt black cardboard box is revealed, with nothing else. Under the lid are the capsules with their attached cable and a zippered case, all inside the same black protective foam mould. Inside the case is the rest of the cable and the silicone tips. The complete contents are as follows:

  • The two Kefine Klanar capsules with a pair of medium sized, narrow core, grey silicone tips.
  • One 4-strand cable with 4.4mm BAL connector.
  • A sturdy grey zippered case.
  • One set of dark grey tips with narrow core sizes SxMxL.
  • One set of dark grey tips with wide core sizes SxMxL.

And that's it. As the manufacturer itself says, Kefine prefers to invest just enough in its presentation, without creating unnecessary artifice. Two sets of tips, a good cable and a good zipped case, big enough to fit the whole thing inside without any problems. Well thought out, trying to maximise the quality/price ratio of the product in the essentials.

Kefine Klanar 07_r.jpgKefine Klanar 08_r.jpg

Construction and Design

The capsules have the classic African continent shape with all corners very rounded. They are manufactured by 5-axis CNC machining from a single piece of aluminium alloy. The finish is matt black anodised. The outer face is branded in white lettering and is protected by clear plastic sheeting to prevent scratching and retain its glossy appearance. The 2Pin 0.78mm connection is on the edge and is slightly projected. It has a rectangular shaped translucent rigid plastic piece containing the two gold plated connections. This piece is shallow, it does not overhang. The inner side is rounded and has no protruding shape. This makes the body smooth and soft, facilitating ergonomics. There are two holes on this face, one close to the rim, the other closer to the mouthpiece. The letters indicating the channel are white and clearly visible. The nozzles do not have a smooth growth, but are quite projected and have a very adequate average length. The entire mouthpiece is integral, forming a single piece with the inner face. It has three diameters, the base 6.2mm, the central taper 5.6mm and the outer crown 6.3mm. The mouthpiece guard is metallic with a crossed spiral pattern. Although it seems to be double, as underneath this first grille there is another micro-perforated grille, which also looks metallic.
The cable is available with either a 3.5mm SE plug or a 4.4mm BAL plug. In my case I have chosen the balanced plug, it is gold plated. Its sleeve is a regular black cylinder with the brand name in white letters. There are two slots near the cable outlet, which is protected by a black rubber sleeve. The cable consists of 4 strands with 54 wires each. The brown strands are made of OFC litz wires and the black strands are made of silver-plated (black) copper litz wires. Each wire has a diameter of 0.05mm. The splitter piece is another smaller cylinder in the same style. Its diameter widens at the edge and then narrows again. In the centre is the model name in white letters. The pin is a ring whose inner hole is the optimum size to perform its adjustment function firmly and without slipping easily, facilitating the task for which it has been efficiently designed. The cable has semi-rigid sheaths on a transparent ear. The sleeves of the 2Pin 0.78mm connectors are each slightly angled black plastic pieces that are tapered and flattened near the two pins, thus the aesthetic integration with the capsules is very appropriate.
The design is simple but very effective. I get the feeling that nothing has been left to chance and that all the details have been thought out to maximise ergonomics but on a simplistic, but very well thought out basis. From the shape of the capsules to all their visible details, with all the letters very well contrasted to be able to see the channel of the capsules (with the exception of the marking of the cable, located on the plastic sleeve of the 2Pin connector, which consists of a raised letter). Except for this detail, the rest of the set is purely functional, practical, but very efficient and effective. The cable is so good and convenient that it does not need to be replaced, being quite flexible and manageable.

Kefine Klanar 09_r.jpgKefine Klanar 10_r.jpg

Adjustment and Ergonomics

The great, simple but very effective design of the capsules is also noticeable in the length, diameter and angle of the nozzles. All three parameters are very appropriate and the insertion can vary from shallow to medium, depending on the individual canal. As usual, my large home-made foam-filled tips fit remarkably well and give me a shallow insertion, but with a very occlusive seating that favours a high immersive sensation, as well as a great isolation. Although the inner side is not anchored at all because it is smooth, the rotation is minimal thanks to the length of the mouthpieces and their angle. As I say, this length is very good because the capsules fit very well in my ears and do not protrude too much. They are very comfortable to wear thanks to their matte but smooth surface texture and rounded corners. Really, Kefine has designed capsules to be worn for hours on end without any fatigue. The cable also helps in this respect.

Kefine Klanar 11_r.jpgKefine Klanar 12_r.jpg

Sound

Profile


The Kefine Klanar has a W-profile where the maximum rise is in the sub-bass, closely followed by a peak at 2kHz, which could be dangerous. The middle part of the midrange is dipped in the graph, although it is not as noticeable afterwards, nor does it penalise the sound as much. On the other hand, there is a clear intention to lower the upper mids and extend them towards the treble in an almost flat way, with the intention of softening the high end for a more pleasant and less fatiguing sound. The last peak at 8kHz, which may be the result of the microphone's artifice as much as real, is very light, leaving a fairly homogeneous treble, ending in a zone of decreasing air.
The Klanar's sound contrasts for its power in the low end, as its rise from the sub-bass is maintained by a gentle tapering towards the midrange. After a valley at 600Hz there is a faster rise towards 2kHz to gain clarity. Fortunately, the high-mids are very well resolved along with the treble so as not to impinge on an overly shrill sound. That's why they have been conveniently reduced in amount of energy in a very wise way.
I know that Kefine has been looking for a sound for the masses, playing it safe. But, on the other hand, it has also listened to the thousands of users' opinions about the treble of other brands' planars. In this way, it has sought a tuning that seeks clarity but not at the expense of raising the energy of the high end. Hence the peak at 2kHz and its subsequent smoothing. It is clear that raising the sub-bass in this way generates an appeal focused on bass-lovers, with a very amusing point that combines the clarity of the sound with powerful bass. In this way the sound is open, sufficiently bright and powerful. It's clear that the first half of the mids is the only one that feels a little withdrawn, but even so, the overall tuning is very well resolved so that most commercial, electronic, pop and rock genres sound very pleasant, attractive, clean and detailed and punchy throughout their range. Congratulations to Kefine for having a clearly commercial looking idea, but executing it in the best possible way.

Kefine Klanar.png

Bass

The Kefine Klanar is an IEMS with an emphasis on the sub-bass, aiming for a clean and agile mid-bass. Actually, the mid-bass is also present and that gives it a boosted and energetic low end. Perhaps, too much for some, but very suitable for bass-lovers like me. Without a doubt, this is a band of remarkable quality and presence. It is clear that the sonority and timbre of the planar transducers are not equal to those of the dynamic transducers, but the behaviour of the Klanar is remarkable. Starting with the pure tone test, the Klanar's sound at 20Hz is realistic, deep, sensory and almost inaudible, although subsonic energy is clearly perceptible. The vibration produced at this frequency moves away from the behaviour of the Balanced Armature and is much closer to a dynamic driver. Thus, the behaviour feels much more natural. And it gains the higher the frequency. At 40Hz the tone is powerful, full, punchy, subtly coloured, but very acceptable comparatively speaking. The depth of performance is obvious and both the volume and the space occupied is large and wide.
When it comes back to real music playback, the Klanars are quite capable of following complex and badly recorded bass lines without showing any problems. Moreover, their behaviour remains natural, realistic and pleasant, despite the power input.
The bass has a good level of texture for a planar and a slightly more noticeable than light roughness, which gives it an additional, but not overwhelming, appeal. You could say it has a good balance of texture, agility, speed and decay. It is not an extremely neat or dry bass, but executes strokes quickly and with little or no aftertaste, but it has enough elasticity to be descriptive on surfaces, offering more information than average. It is also worth noting that this is not a dark low end, and there is a soft colour sensation that prevents the range from being much deeper or more sensory. On the other hand, it is also effective in the technical sections and remarkable in the recreation of complex bass lines and layers.
But perhaps the best thing about the range is not only its behaviour, but its tuning. Based on that pretension of sounding powerful from the sub-bass, it tries to go down quickly, although it falls halfway, generating a big and corpulent base, which may not always be to everyone's taste, although it is to the taste of many, among whom I find myself. And I enjoy it.

Kefine Klanar 13_r.jpgKefine Klanar 14_r.jpg

Mids

The mids of the Klanar are moderately polarised. The descent from the bass increases up to the 600Hz mid-range and rises rapidly to 2kHz. Thus, the first half of the midrange suffers from a certain physicality and corporeality, which is noticeable in the male voices. They sound clean and clear, but also slightly thin. Despite this, they have a good timbre, delicate and luminous, which is perceived and drawn closer than one would think, after seeing the graph. Again, I have to congratulate the tuning, because the result of the first half is more effective and present, than in the theory proposed by the FR. And this is something that is appreciated, as it makes the Klanar a more all-rounder IEMS than one might expect, a priori. By de-emphasising this initial part, clarity and separation are enhanced. Density and opacity are also lost. The Klanar never sound hollow or too tight, but remain at that light, subtly piercing, yet firm point, not too thin, but fuller. Perhaps this is due to some low end influence, more for energy than bass bleed. To speak plainly, those looking for a wall of sound in the mids won't find it here. That's not to say that the Klanar's sound bright, completely luminous or analytical, though, they are far more restrained and homogenous than all that. They possess a hint of warmth, again, aided by their gentle tuning in the early treble, which counteracts the excitement in the early mid-highs. Thanks to them, the second half of the mids is very well resolved and helps to create a clean, clear, transparent and showy sound, but without sounding harsh or penetrating. The result is a punchy, but controlled performance in the upper mids, offering a sound that is sufficiently projected, dynamic and organic to sound very efficient, slightly marked, but musical and resolute at the same time. In this way, female vocals, guitars, percussion and other higher based instruments are presented with a mixture of energy, presence and final smoothness that manages to tame them so that they never sound penetrating, even if the volume is high. Quite an achievement of great tuning.

Kefine Klanar 15_r.jpgKefine Klanar 16_r.jpg

Treble

Kefine has deliberately sought to be smooth and confident in the treble, to offer a pleasant sound, free of sibilance and, above all, not too tiring. And he has found it. It is true that the treble tuning helps the rest of the band much more than the range itself. But this is the price to pay to achieve such an effect. To be sure, the Klanar's treble is relatively extended in its first half, but lowered in its energy level and final part. Thus, the treble sounds moderate and homogeneous, but lacks a certain sparkle, liveliness and shimmering brilliance. Admittedly, this also limits the higher overtone impression, but it has an indulgent control and smoothness that counteracts this. In this way, the treble is slightly flat, without any jolt or bite, more focussed on efficiency than on showing off. Above the treble, the air area shrinks slightly, creating a more sparse and wiry sound at times. Perhaps this is the point that makes the timbre less than perfect, due to the lack of a more discernible harmonic extension.

Kefine Klanar 17_r.jpgKefine Klanar 18_r.jpg

Soundstage, Separation

The scene benefits from the cleanliness, relative thinness and delicacy of the central range to appear wide and moderately spacious. Without being surrounding, the presentation is frontal, with remarkable depth and good headroom. There is a sense of superior laterality thanks to the bass emphasis, generating a sense of almost rearward origin from the lower frequencies, which gives it a good level of showiness and virtual three-dimensionality, albeit only in the lower range. The rest of the frequencies are eminently frontal, with an adequate sense of air. There is no gaseous or volatile effect, although the separation is clear, without being a predominant feature of the sound. There is cleanliness, sufficient light, transparency and distance, but it is not an analytical sound or much more detailed than other planars in the price range. Although the cleanliness and neatness of its presentation, as well as the low density of the music, associated with a good level of resolution (without being excellent) helps to recreate a good level of incipient micro detail, without being specific or very defined, but enough to express itself subtly and attract attention.
In terms of imaging, again, the low level of density and its technical capabilities deliver an appropriate, flawless result. Although it is not skilled enough to individually discern each and every element, maintaining that cohesive musical feel that some planars present, which limits them in resolution and analytical capacity.

Kefine Klanar 19_r.jpgKefine Klanar 20_r.jpg

Comparisons

LetShuoer S12 Pro


The S12 Pro are the S12s with a slightly different tuning, with slightly more sub-bass, a subtle lowering of the mid-bass and mid-high and first treble. The idea is to soften the high end of the S12s by adding a more sloped approach to the low end. A modular cable incorporating all three terminations (2.5mm, 3.5mm and 4.4mm) was also added. Kefine's idea with the Klanar is similar, but with more emphasis on smoothing the mid-highs and early highs, but with a more pronounced W-profile and dipping in the first half of the mids.
The capsules of the S12 Pro are smaller, of impeccable construction and a design that is on its way to becoming a classic. Kefine is off to a great start, with great construction and excellent ergonomics. The short mouthpieces of the S12 Pro penalise the comparison in the ergonomics section and, in my case, the Klanar is superior. The cable of the Kefine is not modular and you can choose between SE 3.5mm and BAL 4.4mm. It is slightly thinner but less stiff, which is the weak point of the S12 Pro's cable.
In terms of sound, the Klanars are softer in the upper-mids and first highs, and also lighter in the first mids. Overall, their sound is not as dense and full as in the S12 Pro, nor do they offer that wall-of-sound feel that the S12 Pro does. This density makes them more intense in practically the entire frequency range. Those looking for power and a deeper, more immersive feel should go for the S12 Pro, but should also be careful with their ears, as their more energetic sound and more biting treble can cause hearing fatigue sooner than the Klanar. On the other hand, another advantage that the Klanar has over the S12 Pro is that they are easier to handle, more sensitive and easier to move around than the S12 Pro.
In the pure tone test I prefer the Klanar over the S12 Pro, especially in the lower audible end, sounding more realistic. However, the mid-bass tones are more natural in the S12 Pro, resulting subtly less coloured. The Klanar's seem to have a slightly brighter timbre in the mid-bass, while the S12 Pro's seem deeper, denser and more homogeneous. The bass also seems to take up more space, being more voluminous and opulent, delivering more energy and power, even. As much as the volumes are equalised, there is not as much punch and violence in the low end of the Klanar, which ends up being softer.
The mid-range, in its first half, is lighter, thinner and more delicate in the Klanar. The S12 Pro are more physical, somewhat closer, more homogeneous and also denser, with more body. This results in fuller male voices, as well as a fuller instrumentation, with a more accurate timbre and superior fullness. In the upper mids the competencies seem to even out, although the differences still lie in the density and body of the elements. The S12 Pro's have more substrate and harmonics, while the Klanar's are leaner, thinner, something that facilitates a cleaner, neater feel. That tendency to be thinner makes them seem neater and more detached. In reality, they feel more V-shaped and somewhat more sparse, offering slightly less information by default on both sides. Although, that thinness can be beneficial in some situations, as it is able to isolate female vocals with good talent, recreating them in a more prominent way. The S12 Pro's are more physical and fuller in this respect, offering more base and treble, as well as a more up-front and close presence. But they are also more homogeneous and the female vocals seem more integrated and wrapped up in the music, sharing that prominence with the rest of the instruments.
In the treble the difference in energy is clear. The S12 Pro has more energy, but its timbre is more accurate. In the Klanar they have been lowered and their sonority is more subdued, relaxed and nuanced. They don't have the sparkle of the S12 Pro, but they aren't any sharper either. I actually think that something in between the models would be ideal. Here it's a choice between the more realistic and crisp zone of the S12 Pro or the less fatiguing controlled attenuation of the Klanar.
In terms of soundstage, the S12 Pro persists with the idea of a denser, wider, but frontally more dense and homogeneous wall of sound. The Klanar presents a more oval soundstage, with more air and lateral distance, but also in depth. It's not as big or tall as in the S12 Pro, but it seems to be more distributed. That is able to generate some gaps that allow small details to be seen more clearly, as there is more emptiness around them. With the S12 Pro no element seems to be alone and the detection of details seems more complex when the music is more complex. The difference between the two is in that distribution of elements in the scene, so it's hard to say which is greater. It feels a little more volatile and loose on the Klanar, but wider on the S12 Pro, so the end result seems to even out if you average it out.

Kefine Klanar vs LetShuoer S12 Pro.png

Conclusion

Kefine is born with a clear purpose that seeks the best quality/price ratio. Isn't that what most brands are looking for? I suppose so, although the difference is in whether or not they actually achieve it and what they do to achieve it. Kefine is clear in this respect. You can tell they know the landscape and they also take into account the tastes of the fans. It can't be easy to break into the market at the height of the second iteration of planar models with a new model of this technology for the first time. Only by paying attention to the weak points and generating an alternative response on those points can you get attention. And that is where Kefine has put its stamp. It is true that, a priori, not much has been risked in the tuning of the Klanar. However, I think that there are some nuances that can lead to success. And these are the points that the brand itself is really clear about with this model. The model introductions created by the brands themselves are usually very bombastic, but Kefine has clearly explained their wishes: "More powerful bass, warm, rich, clean and detailed mids, smooth and not harsh highs, good for long listening without fatigue. The listening experience is immersive. The soundstage is wide and entertaining. Thanks to its high sensitivity and low impedance, Klanar is very easy to handle." Kefine really knows what they are looking for and they have found it with this model. There's little more I can add, just encourage them to keep it up, even if it's just perfecting what already exists.

Kefine Klanar 21_r.jpgKefine Klanar 22_r.jpg

Sources Used During the Analysis

  • Aune Yuki.
  • Aune M1p.
  • Hidizs S9 Pro Plus Martha.
  • Burson Audio Playmate II.
  • Fiio R7.
Kefine Klanar 23_r.jpgKefine Klanar 24_r.jpg

Kefine offered me this model, in exchange for writing an honest review. I want to make it clear that all my opinions written in this review have not been conditioned by this fact, nor will I ever write anything that I do not really think or feel here. I will only write about my personal opinion in relation to the revised product.

Kefine Klanar 25_r.jpgKefine Klanar 26_r.jpg

Purchase Link

Kefine Klanar 27_r.jpgKefine Klanar 28_r.jpg

You can read the full review in Spanish here

Kefine Klanar 29_r.jpgKefine Klanar 30_r.jpg

Zerstorer_GOhren

500+ Head-Fier
KEFINE Klanar: Kreamy, Krisp and Klarity
Pros: △ Compact yet solid shell chassis
△ Good quality stock cable
△ Surprisingly, it is one of the few planar IEMs that can be amplified with decent power output although there are still takes that should be address.
△ Quite comfy as I can wear it for long listening session and even on physical activity.
△ A fun and engaging sound that this set offers
△ Sufficiently punchy and precise bass quality while having a segregated and well-controlled on its overall bass response
△ Has a balanced texture and transparent midrange.
△ Sweet and expressive female vocals
△ Somehow natural sounding of its instruments' timbre and tonality.
△ Smooth and well-controlled treble response
△ Harshness and sibilance is not a concern at all on this set as how it was tuned.
△ It has a quite proficient technical performance.
△ Affordability.
Cons: ▽ Recessed and lean midrange
▽ Less deep and textured on low frequencies especially on the mid-bass.
▽ Definitely not for neutral heads.
▽ Inclusions seems meagre in my opinion.
20231116_170958.jpg


"Music in the soul can be heard by the universe"

~~Lao Tzu, Chinese philosopher and founder of Taoism



As planar magnetic technology on IEMs keeps evolving since the introduction of Audeze iSine 10 in the mid-2010's, it still has its limitations particularly on power scaling to drive these sets properly. But with the introduction of USB Dongles DACs for smartphones and DAPs with better power delivery on driving these types of IEMs, it also has some development by miniaturisation of its parts to be more compact and requires less power output.

20231116_171228.jpg


This product I have here at my hand will be the main context of this review and before I introduce its features and sonic qualities, I'll introduce the company who crafted this set. KEFINE is one of the recently established audio companies in Mainland China and its name is a portmanteau of "Ke" which is the name of the proprietor of this company and known to be passionate about music and the also a Hi-Fi enthusiast, and then, on the other word, "Fine" is taken from the word "Refine". The word itself shows a dedication of releasing a well-refined product that will be more appealing for budget-conscious audio enthusiasts out there.


This is KEFINE's inaugural product release, The KEFINE Klanar. The Klanar is one of the latest generation of planar magnetic IEMs in the market and its asking price is one of the affordable out there too. It has CNC-milled aluminium alloy shell which are well-precise on its design ergonomics up to its acoustic chamber for better sound reproduction with some emphasis and masking of certain frequencies. The shells were underwent to anodising process to give matte finish on its surface with a simple embellishment of the KEFINE logo on its faceplate to give a rather minimalist yet classy look and it's overall sizes are rather smaller and slimmer compared to the previous IEMs with similar transducer-type that I have encounter so far.

20231116_171121_HDR.jpg


The planar magnetic drivers that were implemented on this set is a 14.5mm and it was constructed with some components like N55 neodymium magnet and Polyethylene terephthalate (PET) diaphragm for more fuller and potent bass response while maintaining a natural and detail sound on other frequencies.

20231116_171137.jpg


KEFINE did implement a 2-pin connector on this set that makes it easier to do some cable swapping especially if you want to change the termination plug for balanced output. This set has stock cable of good quality, it has 4-core with two types of wires, OFC litz copper and silver-plated copper litz that were braided for better signal transmission to give a more clear and transparent sound. On its termination plug, it uses a standard 3.5mm SE which was gold-plated for less corrosion and resistant to tear and wear.

20231116_171759.jpg
20231116_171834.jpg
20231116_171907.jpg


Speaking of its product packaging, KEFINE Klanar is rather minimalist on how it was packed and the inclusion are rather enough for this set.

20231116_171051.jpg


Here are the following contents that are included inside the box of KEFINE Klanar:

■ Pair of KEFINE Klanar

■ Stock cable

■ Canvas fabric zippered IEM case

■ 3 pairs of wide-bored UV ear tips of different standard sizes

■ 3 pairs of narrow-bored silicone ear tips of different standard sizes


20231116_171540.jpg
20231116_171552_HDR.jpg
20231116_171557_HDR.jpg
20231116_171604_HDR.jpg


Given that this set is a planar magnetic IEM, we will expect that it needs more power output to amplify it properly but to my surprise, this set is a tad easy to amplify from my devices whether it is my LG phones, DAPs or USB DAC dongles. Although, it still needs some power output for more dynamic and vivid sound that a planar IEM should have.

20231116_164257.jpg


As for its tonality, KEFINE Klanar appears to have a V-shaped sound signature as it has more prominent bass while having a notch yet maintaining a tad warmth and balanced texture on its midrange and just a little bit of emphasis on the treble part of the frequency range while having smooth response.

Kefine_Klanar.jpg

(Graph was provided by @baskingshark , credits to him for his effort)


LOWS/BASS:

This is the most prominent part of the frequency range of this set; it delivers a punchy, deep and fairly tactual bass response that few planar sets are able to match. Both sub-bass and mid-bass are somehow equally presented on the low frequency spectrum.

Sub-bass of this set has a perceivable physicality of rumbling and reverberations in some tracks like synth-pop and old school hip-hop from certain instruments like synthesisers, low tone bass guitars, drum machines and octabasses. On the mid-bass part, it seems that it has a fairly texture note weight on them but there are some instances that it has some lack of darker tone that make it more consistent but overall, it's a good one for planar sets.

On how it sounds, bass guitars have a rasping and bit dull sound while bass kick drums have thudding and gloomy sound. And then bass-baritone vocals, they have depth and volume though I feel that it's a bit hollow and like I mentioned before, that inherent less darker tone to give that distinctive guttural and heft sound.


MIDRANGE:

Initially, just by analysing its sound profile, the midrange of this set is absolutely recessed on its presentation but in a good way that it maintains a balanced texture, transparency and detail. It gives sufficient note weight on vocals and instruments, although in some instances, I somewhat hear that tad leanness in my opinion.

In vocals, particularly female ones, they somehow sound vivid and sweet as they captivate me. Contraltos have a smoky sound though I am still looking for more lush and richness of their vocals that I'm accustomed with. Mezzo-sopranos have that smooth and "coppery" sound that I really enjoy while sopranos have creamy, light and sweet which suits better with soubrette, lyric and dramatic types of soprano singers, but on coloratura types, it's a bit lack of energetic and shimmer to project those high note extension for vocal passage. Meanwhile on male vocals, it only has enough texture just to give some volume and density and hint of warmth on baritones and tenors. Baritones sounds a bit too smooth and less lush sounding on my ideal timbre on them while tenors have a bit tender on my preferably tone but at least it has some clear and metallic sound that somewhat fare better lighter tenor vocals like leggero and lyric. Countertenors have similar characteristics with mezzo-sopranos but it has some graceful and tender sound from them.

On instruments, it seems that they sound quite natural with good detail and clarity as I myself enjoy listening to instrumental tracks. Strings like guitars and violins, they sound in neutral tone with just a little bit of gleam as guitars sound balanced and tad dry while violins have a sensuous sound with just a hint of metallic on them. As for brass instruments, trumpets have the intense yet stately sounds, horns have metallic and resounding sound, and then on trombones, they have a dramatic and concise sound as I listen to some orchestra or ska tracks. On woodwinds, piccolos have a rather light and graceful sound in contrast on its ideal bright and brilliant tonal colour that it should have, concert flutes have mellow and filigree sound, and last ones are clarinets and saxophones and they sounds mild, velvety and sombre. Percussive instruments especially on snares, tom-toms and field drums, have clear, resonant and venerable sound characteristics respectively. Kettle drums have a mellow and velvety sound and pianos have an even and balanced tone to its encompassing note range.


HIGHS/TREBLE:

This is one of the few exceptional planar sets when it comes to treble response. It is so smooth and well-balanced that it manages to tame down those "planar sheen" characteristics that we usually encountered on IEMs with similar transducer type. It has an accentuated upper mids just to give an ample note attack of percussive and rhythmic instruments and vocal definition and some dips on the presence part of the treble frequency to avoid any harshness or controlling sibilance while maintaining a smooth and pleasant response.

Cymbals have a lustrous and soughing sound while hi-hats have its distinctive chick sound as it has a shortened buzzing sound. Celestas have sweet and mellow sound, while glockenspiels have some glistening and lustrous sound from them. It has an ample sparkle and moderate airy extension that will somehow satisfy some listeners who want treble quality and quantity, and also a safe recommendation to treble-sensitive folks.


SOUNDSTAGE, IMAGING AND OTHER TECHNICALITIES:

In general, on how I perceived its overall sound field dimensions, The Klanar has an above-average wide span from left to right, good height reach and immersive depth from front to rear as it gives me a fairly moderate head room within my aural sphere.

On stereo imaging, it projects a concave-like presentation of its stereo field where I was able to pinpoint a placement of instruments and singers on its sonic spatiality. It has a good separation of elements while having an adequate definition on its tonal and frequency layers that delivers a more harmonious and cohesive performance.

In terms of coherency, planar magnetic drivers are no doubt very coherent and have a fast transient speed to deliver a crisp and clear sound. Resolution aspects on this set are quite competent in both macro-dynamics and micro-dynamics as it has good homogenous note texture while having decently sharp definition on detail retrieval from an audio track with its detail infos and nuances.


PEER COMPARISONS:

LETSHUOER S12 PRO


■ Like the Klanar, it uses a larger planar magnetic driver and is also encapsulated in a metal alloy shell chassis albeit it's a bit large. It has modular cable and more included accessories on its packaging box.

■ As for tonality, S12 PRO takes a more U-shaped sound signature which makes it more versatile sounding. It has tighter and penetrating bass response, less recessed midrange with crisp and brim with shimmering sound on vocals and instruments, and a brighter, vivid and energetic treble response.

■ On technical capabilities, S12 PRO has a bit of an edge in few aspects, it has a bit wider on its lateral sound field and a sharper detail definition. But it is more prone to "planar sheen" timbre unlike the Klanar which manage to suppress it a bit. Also, it's a bit harder to drive compared to the Klanar.


HIDIZS MP145

■ This is another IEM with a similar driver that has large planar magnetic, although it has an even larger shell with unusual design cues. Like all current generation of Hidizs IEMs, it has a proprietary detachable tuning nozzle for more tuning versatility.

■ As I mentioned regarding its detachable tuning nozzle system on MP145, it offers a variety of sound profiles from a warm V-shaped to bright U-shaped that makes this set more of an all-rounder. It has more punchy and tactile bass response especially red tuning nozzle mode, a warmer and lusher(red tuning filter set-up), even and more balanced texture (rose gold tuning filter set-up), and a tad brighter and energetic (silver tuning filter setup) on its midrange and almost similar smooth treble response with Klanar in red tuning filter set-up or more sparkling and airier brilliance treble on both rose gold and silver tuning filter set-ups.

■ Regarding its technical capabilities, MP145 has similar performance with the Klanar in sound/speaker stage, stereo imaging, separation etc. But MP145 has bit sharper definition on detail retrieval and like Klanar, it has less "planar sheen" timbre.

As I summarise my review on KEFINE Klanar, this sets is indeed a product that truly signifies the development of planar magnetic IEMs within few years as KEFINE was able to deliver a more refined product that will be more budget friendly for audio enthusiasts who wants a good build quality with good tuning and competent technical capabilities. For sure that this type of tuning might not suited to some adherents of neutral and almost uncoloured tuning but its feat on its miniaturise engineering marvel on how a large planar magnetic driver was able to fit on such a compact form factor will make this set even more impressive to hold. If you are looking for an affordable planar IEM, this set is highly recommended to you then.


20231116_171249.jpg



If you are interested to purchase this set, here's are the following unaffliated links:

AUDIO 46: https://audio46.com/products/kefine-klanar

AMAZON: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B0CKZ71VP3/kefine+klanar/

LINSOUL: https://www.linsoul.com/products/kefine-klanar

HIFIGO: https://hifigo.com/products/kefine-klanar

ALIEXPRESS: https://www.aliexpress.com/store/1103187464?spm=a2g0o.detail.0.0.5e8evTTsvTTsR
m

SPECIFICATION:

MODEL: KEFINE KLANAR
IMPEDANCE: 16Ω
SENSITIVITY: 105dB
FREQUENCY RESPONSE: 20Hz – 40KHz
CABLE LENGTH: 1.2m
PIN TYPE: 0.78 2-PIN CONNECTOR
PLUG TYPE: 3.5mm, 4.4mm
DRIVER UNIT(S): (1) PLANAR MAGNETIC DRIVER


Some Tracks Tested: ( * = 16-bit FLAC, ** = 24-bit FLAC, *'* = MQA, '*' = DSD, *'= .WAV)

Alison Krauss -When You Say Nothing At All *
Jade Wiedlin - Blue Kiss**
Led Zeppelin - When The Levee Breaks **
Mountain - Mississippi Queen *
Queen - Killer Queen **
Guns N' Roses - Patience *'*
Eric Clapton - Tears in Heaven '*'
Sergio Mendes- Never Gonna Let You Go '*'
Pearl Jam - Daughter **
Roselia - Hidamari Rhodonite *
Assassin - Fight (To Stop The Tyranny)*
Celtic Frost- Visual Aggression *
New Order - Blue Monday *
The Corrs- What Can I do (unplugged version) *
Jimi Hendrix Experience - Voodoo Child *
The Madness- Buggy Trousers *
Metallica - Motorbreath **
Mariah Carey- Always Be My Baby *
Destiny's Child - Say My Name *
Malice Mizer- Au Revoir *
Mozart - Lacrimosa *
New York Philharmonic Orchestra - Dvorak- Symphony 9 " From the New World." *
Eva Cassidy - Fields of Gold (Sting cover)*
Michael Jackson - Give In To Me *
Exciter - Violence and Force *
Diana Krall - Stop This World **
Debbie Gibson - Foolish Beat *'*
The Sisters of Mercy – Lucretia My Reflection**
Suzanne Vega – Luka **
Lauren Christy – Steep *
Ottoman Mehter - Hucum Marsi *
Diana Damrau - Mozart: Die Zauberflöte*
Type O Negative - Black No.1 *
Felix Ayo - Vivaldi: Presto **
Three Tenors - Nessum Dorma *
Mercyful Fate - Witches' Dance *

P.S.

I am not affiliated to KEFINE 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 Mr. Collin Yang for providing this review unit. I truly appreciate his generosity and trust towards me and other reviewers.


20231116_171003.jpg
20231116_171009.jpg
20231116_171015.jpg
20231116_171755.jpg
Last edited:

SenyorC

100+ Head-Fier
A good first entry by a new brand...
Pros: The have spent their efforts on doing the important parts well...
Cons: Presentation & contents are a little lacking, the tuning is a rather generic V shape...
DSC_2487.JPG


TLDR version on YouTube: TDLR - Kefine Klanar

The Kefine Klanar have been sent to me directly by Kefine in exchange for the publication of this review. As always, I will make every attempt to be as unbiased as humanly possible. Kefine have not made any requests or comments and all opinions are my own.

I cannot find an official page for Kefine but the Klanar are available through all of the usual stores that sell IEMs online.

To avoid being repetetive 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

DSC_2534.JPG


Intro…

Kefine is a new brand and the Klanar are their first set of IEMs. As an entry into the IEM world, they have opted to go with a 14.5mm planar driver and are priced at a little over the 100€ mark.

I can't really give you a back story on them as I don't know it but when they reached out to me, I was happy to give them a listen.

It's true that they have picked a segment, the planar magnetic IEM segment, that is quite crowded at the moment, yet the price is an interesting one, coming in at the lower end of the current planar options, so let's see how they did.

DSC_2585.JPG


Presentation…

The box is a plain black one, with a lift off lid, that arrives inside a white cardboard sleeve. The front shows an image of the IEMs, along with the brand, model and "Planar IEM" on the front. On the back we get the basic specs, along with another image of the IEMs, and that is about it. The outer packaging doesn't do much to stand out, but that is not a complaint as I don't listen to the packaging. I would rather packaging be basic and the contents get the attention.

Inside the box we find that the packaging stays simple, with just a piece of foam with two cutouts for the IEMs and a larger one for the storage/transport case. The case is a simple grey semi rigid type with Kefine on the top and contains the additional silicone tips. In total there are 7 sets of tips included, with 3 different sizes and two core sizes, that are nothing special but do the job and are what I have used for this review.

DSC_2447.JPG


Build and aesthetics…

The IEMs are almost as simple as the packaging, using a generic shape with Kefine written in white text and a white circle on a black faceplate and shell.

By simple I am not being negative here at all. No, they are not something that is going to jump out and grab your attention, which is often a very good thing, but they use a metal faceplate on a dark plastic shell that does not look out of place and honestly look to be well built (although only time will tell).

Due to the simple, generic shape of the shells, they should be comfortable for the vast majority of users and I am no exception here. For long listening periods I did not find them to create any discomfort at all.

The included cable is a four core brown and black weave, with a metal 3.5mm connector and splitter, along with plastic two pin connectors at the IEM end. As with the whole package so far, nothing is special but nothing is offensive, I can't see the aesthetics being a negative at all.

DSC_2619.JPG


Sound…

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, so far we have a very generic set of IEMs and when we get to the sound, we could expect the same, seeing that the driver used in these IEMs is one that we have seen in many other models so far. The majority of those other models have been on the better side of things, although there have been a few that were let down by the tuning. In the case of the Klanar, I must say that I feel they have done a good job.

Here is the graph of the Klanar in comparison to my usual personal preference target:

graph.png


It's been a while since I said it, so I will remind people that my target is not a "be all end all" as far as tuning. While that reference is a good guide to my personal preferences as far as tuning, it doesn't mean that I don't enjoy other sound signatures that deviate from it (or that I always enjoy those that are close to it).

Now, let's do my usual round up referring to my test tracks that I always use for detailed listening and review references.

Starting off with the subbass, there is plenty of presence in these areas with the Klanar. "Chameleon" has a lot of rumble in those low ranges, which is made even more present by the boosted midbass range that follows it.

To be honest, it is a little too much for my own tastes, making things a little overpowering for me in those lower notes, however, for those that do like plenty of low end, there is no denying that it does it well.

Let's face it, "Chameleon" is a track that is exaggerated in the lower ranges (being one of the reasons that I use it for testing), so moving on to something that is more focused in the midbass than the subbass, such as "Sun Is Shining", that exaggerated low end cleans up quite a bit. There is still plenty of midbass for those who want it but we are no longer surrounded by a wall of rumble.

Here the midbass does seem more controlled and refined, with a decent overall performance even if a little elevated for my tastes.

If we focus on my usual midbass fatigue test track, which is "Crazy" by Daniella Andrade, I do not find the midbass tiring. This is always a good sign to me as, when midbass is overly present and not well controlled, I will quickly feel nauseous and even get a headache before the end of the track. Again, it is noticeable that the presence is above what would be my preference for this track but the quality is there to keep it from being a negative.

As we move into the mid range, here there is a noticeable lack of presence. This can make male vocals lack presence in their midrange, sort of hiding them behind the bass. With female vocals backed with acoustic music, such as Daniella Andrade in the track I just mentioned, or Sara K. in "All You Love Turned To Passion", this is not as noticeable. There is plenty of presence in the upper mids to bring clarity to them even if there is a bit of mid presence lacking.

This lack of mids stands out more when we have more complex tracks, especially with male vocals, such as "Get Lucky" or something more rock like Rage Against The Machine in "Killing In The Name Of", where Zac is slightly overshadowed by those thunderous bass and guitar notes.

One thing I will say is that Kefine have done a very good job elevating those upper mids to bring clarity and counteract the bass presence, without making the IEMs shouty or thin. Looking at the graph I would have expected things to be very shouty but it is not the case.

As we move into the upper treble, there is a bit of roll off which is noticeable but does not sound bad. It just adds to that V shaped signature that the Klanar are aiming for.

Details are as good as on many other sets that use this same planar driver, with the lower ranges being very well presented as far as details go, unless we have the wall of rumble that is "Chameleon" of course 😉

Sound stage I would say is about average for a set of IEMs, which is not bad for something that has this amount of bass presence. The bass can fill the sound stage quite nicely and while things are not milimetrically placed, that extra clarity of the upper mids does allow a nice stereo separation.

DSC_2430.JPG


Conclusion…

I think that the Klanar are a very respectable first entry for a new company. They have kept things very simple with the design and presentation, chosen a sound signature that should appeal to the masses and spent their resources on getting that part, the most important part, right.

They are not my favourite sound signature but they are a very enjoyable presentation that I have had no issue listening to over the past week. Again, I feel that the tuning they have decided to go with is something that is not going to stand them apart from many other brands in the segment but they have made a good job of it.

When you are new, you can take the risk of doing something completely different and either make a huge impact or fail miserably and make your first impression a bad one, which is something that will follow you for quite some time. In this case, Kefine have opted to do something simple and I think that they have set a good foundation to grow upon.

___
As with all my reviews, this one is also available 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
achoreviews.squig.link/isolation
  • Like
Reactions: bithalver

NymPHONOmaniac

Headphoneus Supremus
Pros: -among best balanced sounding sub 150$ planar
-versatile smooth warm V shape tonality
-fully bodied bass and mids
-beautifull vocal
-thick rumbly bass
-natural enough timbre for a planar
-wide soundstage
-metal construction
-decent cable
Cons: -average resolution
-average bass separation
-not the cleanest spatiality
-lack a bit of sparkle-brilliance-treble extension
-a bit of more of the same planar offering
398432248_1013619056545928_562817549074848984_n.jpg


TONALITY: 8.5/10
TECHNICALITIES: 8.2/10
TIMBRE: 8.5/10
SOUNDSTAGE: 8/10
IMAGING: 7.5/10
CONSTRUCTION: 8/10
ACCESSORIES: 7.5/10
SOUND VALUE: 8.2/10




INTRO

Kefine is a new earphones company from China that act as a budget minded IEM maker wanting to push sound value bundaries for the benefit of consumers.
Today I will review their very first IEM release call: Kefine Klanar.
The Klanar is priced 120$ and use a 14.5mm planar driver with a N55 magnet.

Let see in this review if the Klanar can join the podium of good affordable planar IEMs which begin to be a crowdy market, especially with this ''renowned 14.5mm planar driver, celebrated for its versatility and ability to excel across various music genres.''.


CONSTRUCTION&ACCESSORIES
399683763_679866250906428_3754597882775782313_n.jpg
398010625_1562495564489803_1654519088175743858_n.jpg


The construction is all made of metal, the design is minimalist and doesn't captivate the eyes. It's elegant but blend too.
The black metal housing is smooth and have a triangular shap without any sharp edge. Nozzle is angled and average long for versatile fit. 2pin connectors is solidly embeded in metal housing and overall durability seem good at least in term of shock proof.

398467386_274733185532835_46159128548384597_n.jpg


The accessories are minimal and of basic quality as expected with this price range. We have a cheap carrying case. We have 7 pair of basic silicone eartips.
But we have a decent quality cable too, which is a 4 cores braided cable using OFC litz wire in brown and silver-plated copper litz wire in black. As well, you can choose either 3.5mm single ended plug or 4.4mm balanced plug, which is a big plus. Nothing to complaint here for 100$ IEM package.


SOUND IMPRESSIONS
397985573_1534613877369527_5480305224530269477_n.jpg


After having tested more than 12 planar IEMs, it's hard for me to be surprise or impress by their technicalities, yet the tonal balance is a real struggle with most of them, 7HZ Dioko and KZ PR2 being the worst, then Dunu Talos being most overpriced, then Tangzu Zeitan WU being among most underwhelming technicaly wise yet most charming tonaly wise and this is where we are with the Klanar: tonality eveness. Female vocal glory. Mid range sweet spot. Bassy, yet not hard basshead way.

You enter the Klanar like in a cozzy home, it's familiar, it's the neighboor of Letshuoer S12, Hidizs MP145 and Tangzu WU which all sound rather similar, yet aren't 100% the same.

We are into warmish V shape territory where bass and mids captivate the audience then a hint of extra upper treble air and sparkle cocoon an overall lush macro rendering.

These are tuned for the masses, they shine with pop and vocal centric music, more so than jazz or classical yet it's not plain bad for this style too. Even rock don't sound bad. I'll be hard pressed sayin a peculiar music style sound underwhelming with those.
If your all about bass and vocal: you'll love those.

As an R&B, Soul and even rap lover as well as intensely addicted to lush female vocal, the Klanar sure hit a sweet spot for me, with great emotional response alot of planar IEM fail to deliver. But my main music style is jazz and classical too. While not as impressive for this music genre, at least the piano is rendered beautifuly and it's another big plus.


When it come to bass, i know i simplify the tonality as V shape but here we are at the intersection of mid and sub bass boost, its the slam that get extra weight, presence and energy more so than the kick drum.
We have more ''oomph'' than hard thumping punch and the overall bass roundness is a bit warmed and do thicken lower mids with warmth too.
It's not a clean well sharpened and separated bass, its thick, tactile and physical.
As well, the vibrant rumble can go in near basshead territory, its a thick slightly compressed in energy rumble that can extract bass line very well, even fast one, but it's more about abstract presence definition that textured one, the layering is good but the resolution of this bass line aren't magnify nor crisply delimitate.
Then the kick presence is indeed more articulate but with a more mellow dynamic, it's not hefty punch nor plain lean in impact, just mellow and lacking a bit of bite like for double bass that we struggle to find the string pulling debut.
Strangely, the cello don't sound very lush and full, it's even thin, it might be due to specific treble boost that focus more on higher harmonic than lower fundamental which would be warmed if well, the cello was hit and all in dynamic loudness.
This kind of juicy dynamic bass response i sure appealing for simple bassy music, but i've try electronic too and unless acid techno or super fast kick centric music, it was rather pleasant. While more quantity than quality, we most not forget were talking about planar bass here and in that regard it's very good, its not too euphonic or boomy.

The mids are surely my favorite aspect of those Klanar, which was unexpected because planar struggle to deliver lush and natural mids and it's mostly what we got here. Especially for vocal and piano lover. There something imprevisible with the Klanar dynamic that tend to favor certain attack release, so the bowed instrument like violin or cello aren't as full bodied in presence than vocal, saxo or piano. In that regard, it's quite similar to balanced armature niche transient delivery.
So back to vocal, it's all about female vocal really, which are fowards, dense, wide in presence, breathy to lush in timbre and captivate the listener right away to the cost of puting in oblivion background instrument if they lack dynamic heft, if it's bass less music female vocal loudness will sure dominate rest of spectrum. These aren't shouty and sibilance will rarely be a problem unless extremely present in the recording.
The piano is presented with good note weight that is felt with a slightly dense sustain and impressive release naturalness that blossom in the air. It's not thin sounding nor distant and fundamentals lower harmonic are present enough.
While not veiled, their hint of warmth going on that stole sharpness of definition in macro resolution, it's not clearest nor cleanest mid range out their and could feel unidimentional to some due to lack of deepness of center stage.

Now when it come to the treble it's mostly safe apart lower treble boost and avoid plain dullness or darkness with slight upper treble boost that tend to add snap and energy to snare drum but the percussion aren't put fowards.
The highs stay in the back of mid range and don't stole the show nor extract unheard micro details of your track, the attack speed is fast and controlled, cymbals aren't splashy and a bit smoothed in release loudness.
As noted, snare is more snappy and sharp in it's dynamic attack than upper register cymbals which can feel a bit half cooked and not as full in body as non metallic percussion.
Both electric and acoustic guitar sound realistic and offer enough sparkle, the strings pulling lack a bit of definition sharpness and is softed, this make the presentation a bit laid back, opposite of agressive or shouty.
All in all, their not alot to say about treble, it doesn't go messy or muddy thanks to fast sounds layering of planar driver, we have minimal sparkle and brilliance so the top feel open and airy enough without being vividly resolved. Everything feel smoothly balanced and act as a whole, we don't have acward micro details or texture artefacts poping out like with 7HZ Dioko. Perfect example of ''jack of all trade, master of none'' treble performance.

The Soundstage sound open enough, epecially in wideness and it's tall enough to not feel stock in your head or compressed. It isn't very deep nor clean. We can say it's average without being bad.

The imaging isn't an highlight of Klanar, while sound layering avoid going muddy it's hard to discern the singularity of each instrument and the positioning is a bit hazy in definition so I would not suggest those for monitoring.

Side notes:

Like all planar, these benefit from proper amping which will open up spatiality and add macro dynamic livelyness. I suggest a minimum of 200mw@32ohm.
The included eartips are OK, i tend to near always use wide bore ear tips with planar unless nozzle is small, the Klanar is no exception and can go muddy if you use eartips with too small nozzle hole.



COMPARAISONS

399799255_832017528664094_4188336768565146767_n.jpg


VS LETSHUOER S12

The Klanar is warmer and more U shape yet with more extended and sparkly upper treble so we can consider it more W shape as a whole too.
The S12 feel like a brighter balanced V shape, with less boosted sub bass and more rounded mid bass that make the punch feel faster and tighter than mellower thumping of Klanar which offer more rumble sustain and slam boom when trigering this exact sub meet mid bass region. Overall bass is cleaner and more controlled with S12, yet more rolled off in sub bass which is more boosted in bass line texture presence.
Mids are lusher and wider in presence with the Klanar, they arent as shouty and bright as more energic S12 which feel more compressed in layering delivery, yet this make female vocal or saxophone a bit more upfront too. Note definition is more softed and warm with Klanar, but note weight seem heavier. While darker, overal mid range sound more open and enveloping with Klanar, while its more in your face with S12. Timbre is less grainy too, so while resolution is more boosted with S12, the layering is more compressed in macror dynamic.
Then the treble is very similar apart lower treble being smoother and less prompt to sibilance with the Klanar and upper treble is snappier, cymbals have more brilliance and are easie to pin point, S12 can be more splashy while crash cymbals are more damped in attack release with Klanar.
Soundstage is notably wider and most of the time deeper too with Klanar.
Imaging being more holographic and vast in spacing with the Klanar, i find it easier to position instrument even if no end word in that department it's more articulate in macro dynamic and layering is notablye less muddy.

All in all, at they end, these 2 feel in same league and at first listen of Klanar i think about S12 similarity, so i do feel both use very same planar driver but Klanar acoustic chamber is bigger and overall tuning is more balance and immersive, and well, bassier too, making me even more puzzle about those people satin S12 is basshead since i don't even consider tha notably rumblier Klanar basshead. So, if you seek for a warmer, bassier yet sparklier and less shouty S12, i do think the Klanar is a good bet!


VS HIDIZS MP145

Ok, now those 2 are even more similar than with S12, but the MP145 has 3 tuning nozzle, red one feel darker, bassier and more laid back. Yet, with balanced tuning nozzle tonality feel more dynamic W shape, about as bass but with more sub bass headroom.

Both these are near basshead U shape with extra upper treble sparkle and air, the MP145 is most open and airy of the 2, its a bit less warm and thick in mid range but less lean overall. Here, the Klanar is more laid back for sure.

The bass is a hitn heavier in slam and cleaner with the MP145, the rumble sustain is longer and wider in natural vibrancy and resonance, it feel more chunky and compressed in boom with the Klanar. We have more bass bleed that thicken and embrace lower mids with Klanar too, affect dynamic layering articulation.

Mids are more open, clean and crisp with the MP145, its a hint lusher and thicker with the Klanar and female vocal are more pushed fowards. I find timbre more natural and less dryish with the Klanar yet upper mids a bit louder so for people sensitive to pinna gain ill go MP145.

Treble is even more airy and brilliant with MP145, its more refined, sharper in definition, offer greater amount of micro details and percussions are fully restitute and more snappy and fowards with MP145. Klanar has darker highs, more softed in attack bite and more damped in natural resonance release and sparkle.

Soundstage is notably taller, wider and deeper with the MP145.

Imaging offer greater articulation and separation of sound layering in both X and Y axis. That plus sharper resolution and less bleedy bass sure permit superior positionning, clean and better define way.

All in all, while I say S12 feel in same league technicaly, the MP145 is a hint superior to warmer lusher Klanar. For plain female vocal, i do prefer the Klanar but for all the rest from imaging to bass quality to treble refinement and sparkle, the MP145 still hold its ground.

CONCLUSION

393657687_3703529039879430_768521866933563389_n.jpg


In all honnesty, I was expecting way worst from a first planar IEM release from an unknown company and i'm positively surprise by both bass performance and mid range sweetness of these Klanar.

Yet, this still feel like more of the same in term of offering and it's hard to clearly state these are better buy than Letshuoer S12, Tangzu Zetian Wu or even Tinhifi Panda since it's just a matter of more or less boost or damping in certain frequency. All of these IEMs isn't something i would call cleanly resolved nor extremely impressive in technical performance and the Klanar is no exception.

But it might be the sweet spot your seeking too, since it's well balanced and offer a laid back bassy and lush tonality that is very versatile for multiple music style from rock to pop to soul and even rap. In that regard, their no doubt it's a good buy as well as a safe one.

Recommended!





--------------------

PS: I want to thanks Sivga for sending me this review sample. They aren't even aware i've publish this review yet. As always, i'm free of any affiliation program bias or anything that can affect my integrity since I make zero $ with this review as well as all other I've made before.


You can order the Kefine Klanar for 119$ at this store but it's available on Aliexpress and other store too:
https://audio46.com/products/kefine-klanar
Last edited:

durwood

100+ Head-Fier
Kefine Klanar Review – Time Is Only A Reference Point
Pros: -Fitment
-Carrying Case
-Shell Finish
-Articulate and quick deep bass
-Detailed and well extended treble resolution
-Easy to drive
Cons: -Box was difficult to open (one time experience)
-Flimsy Ear-tips
-Cable plastic texture
-Timbre a little cold/analytical

1699197405187.jpeg

ORIGIN STORY


I suddenly found myself overloaded with many new audio gadgets to review in the midst of a home remodel to make it more interesting, and the Kefine Klanar stands out amongst the noise. Kefine is a new brand that aims to jump in the Planar realm with an oddly similar planar driver size. I think they hit the mark and delivered a more forward sounding Timeless with less sizzle in the top, and for nearly half the price at an easy to digest price of $119.


As a newcomer, Kefine is named after the founder Ke, and mashed together with Refine hoping to provide refined audio products for music lovers with affordable price and the best value-that’s their tagline. Klanar is word play on Planar from what I can tell. One quibble was the box was hard to open, but it only added to the suspense of what was inside. Seriously though, I appreciate an easy to open box please.




PHYSICAL FORMALITIES


The eartips included with the Kefine Klanar are no big thing, your basic set of small bores with two pairs of medium one of which comes preinstalled and then a set of S/M/L wide bore. I suggest aftermarket replacements as the outer portion is rather flimsy and easy to deform. The nozzle stem is thick which sometimes helps with bass control.


The black matte anodized aluminum CNC shell of the Kefine Klanar is smooth and free of any uncomfortable edges. Kefine understands that CNC shells need not be heavy monstrosities that wear heavily on your ears after long listening sessions.


The emblazoned logo might not be everyone’s idea of a nice design, however simplicity is a statement since it is the only thing to look at. Being a first time product, this is probably a wise choice. Understated, unobtrusive and fits well is a good combination in my book. Keep in mind the nozzles are the typical larger diameter, I have not seen smaller nozzle designs for quite some time.


The medium sized zippered gray cloth hard case is appreciated. It will protect them nicely and fit the ear-tips with ease. The cable is a bit plastic feeling, but is of above entry level grade quality. First comparison, the 7HZ Timeless cable is nicer feeling, but the Kefine Klanar is better equipped with 0.78mm two pin. I prefer 2 pin for longevity over MMCX which instead offers pivoting capability for the ear-hooks. The Kefine Klanar is offered in 3.5mm single ended or 4.4mm balanced connection when you order.



Kefine Klanar Package



SOUND


Every time I see another planar launched, I automatically assume it has to be similar to the 7Hz Timeless, and so far the Kefine Klanar is the one that has come close. Bass sounds deep when needed with a good haptic rumble. When compared to the Timeless, they feel equal in technical abilities. Articulate, transiently quick and rumble when you need it.


Despite measuring the Kefine Klanar at a higher level in the bass region, the balance between the bass and mid-range pinna gain, has it sounding similar in quantity to the Timeless. Timeless sounds plump and fatter while the Kefine Klanar adds a touch of warmth and slap. Even double kick drums on Symphony X - King of Terrors rips quick with defined bass notes, I remember how disappointed I was in the HIDIZS MP145 in this regard.


Mid-range does come forward on the Kefine Klanar, but oddly not overbearing. I think it has to do with the lowest valley is not at 1Khz, but rather even lower in the mid-range around 600Hz. At 1khz, we are talking a 10db rise, but at 600hz it comes closer to 13dB.


This again is that balancing act. Vocals sound clean and absence of added rasp. Instruments have good depth and space around them. The Timeless sounds a touch wider given the less forwardness of the vocals. I have to agree Kefine has tuned the Klanar to work well with acoustic music. Snare drums are subdued as mid treble is dialed back to provide a more fatigue free listening session over energetic.


Timbre comes off more digital than analog despite the warmer lower end, to me this is a byproduct of exacting nature of a properly implemented planar driver. Overall it sounds proper and nothing sticks out as off.


The Kefine Klanar treble is where the balance shifts in its favor. The Timeless was known for it’s U shaped signature with a rather over the top treble shimmer and air that can be almost too much at times. The Kefine Klanar has gone easier on us and yet still presents excellent shimmer and clarity with quick transient dynamics. I like the balance of it, others may prefer the extra air of the Timeless.


Easily driven by my LG G8 smartphone or simple dongle despite the lower than average sensitivity, the Kefine Klanar is a few more decibels louder or more sensitive than the Timeless. Power of course is always appreciated. The response through the treble is more consistent and tracks between left and right properly, my Timeless is not nearly as matched left to right.




FINAL REMARKS


Deep down I was hoping this planar would deliver, but had low expectations. I am proud to say Kefine Klanar surprised me and gave us a nicely designed earphone that can compete with the Timeless if you felt more mid-range presence was needed or the treble shimmer was a tad much. The typical universal shaped shell design might also be more appealing, that circular face-plates found on the Timeless.


Given the diffuse field curve with enough low end bass boost and upper treble at a good level, a prominent recommendation for anyone shopping for a new IEM, put it on your short list and consider getting some better ear tips to do them justice. Jazz and acoustic mate well, as does Rock and Pop a close second. I am going to revisit these before year end against the HIDIZS MS3 and Moondrop Starfield 2 and decide who comes out on top at the $120 price point.




DISCLAIMER


Provided Free of charge from Sivga who also sent me their iteration Nightingale yet to be received, I appreciate the opportunity and these will probably get a second look from the man, the legend Loomis. Purchase links below that provide no monetary incentive for us. Check them out on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/kefine.audio


USA:
Audio 46: https://audio46.com/products/kefine-klanar
Hifigo: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B0CKZ71VP3/kefine+klanar/


AliExpress:
https://www.aliexpress.us/w/wholesale-kefine-klanar.html?spm=a2g0o.home.search.0


International:
Linsoul: https://www.linsoul.com/products/kefine-klanar
Hifigo: https://hifigo.com/products/kefine-klanar




SPECIFICATIONS


Style In-ear
Driver size 14.5 mm Planar
Frequency response 20 Hz - 40K Hz
Sensitivity 105 dB +/- 3 dB

GRAPHS

  • Left vs Right
  • Kefine Klanar vs 7HZ Timeless
  • Kefine Klanar vs Moondrop Starfield 2 vs HIDIZS MS3
Kefine
Kefine
Kefine
Last edited:

Moonstar

100+ Head-Fier
KEFINE Klanar IEM Review
Pros: Musical and Enjoyable Overall Sound Profile,
Fats, Controlled and Punchy Planar Bass Response,
Transparent Midrange Presentation,
Smooth Treble tuning that offers an efficient sense of airiness and sparkle,
Good Built Quality & Ergonomic Monitor Shape,
Decent 4-Core mixed hybrid cable available with 3.5mm SE or 4.4mm Balanced Plug
Cons: Some roll-off around the Mid Treble area,
Lower Midrange is missing some body and depth,
Mediocre Unboxing Experience

KEFINE Klanar IEM Review


Introduction:

KEFINE is a new brand focusing on portable audio products. The brand name KEFINE (Kəfaɪn) comes from the combination of the founder name Ke (Kə) and the word “Refine”. KEFINE is planning to provide refined audio products for music lovers with affordable price. The first product is a new Planar Driver IEM named Klanar that has been inspired from the word Planar. The Klanar features a 14.5 mm diameter customized Planar Magnetic Driver located inside a 5-Axis CNC machined Aluminum Alloy shell that has a pretty small size and comfortable shape.

20231007_191456-01-scaled.jpeg


Disclaimer:

I would like to thank KEFINE for providing me the Klanar Planar IEM as review sample. I am not affiliated with KEFINE or any third person beyond this review and all these words reflect my true, unaltered opinions about the product.


Price & Availability:


The actual price for the KEFINE Klanar is $119.00 USD.


Package & Accessories:


The KEFINE Klanar came inside a black box that was wrapped with a white cardboard sleeve that shows illustrations of the IEM and some product related brandings and specs on the top and rear surface.

20231007_185836-scaled.jpg
20231007_185841-scaled.jpg


Inside the box are the following items/accessories;

  • 1 x KEFINE Klanar Planar Driver In-Ear Monitors
  • 1 x 2-Pin Detachable Cable with 3.5mm Headphone Plug
  • 3 x pairs of Balanced Silicone Ear Tips (S, M, L)
  • 3 x pairs of Bass Enhance Silicone Ear Tips (S, M, L)
  • 1 x Zipper Case
20231007_190205-01-scaled.jpeg
20231007_191151.jpg



Design & Build Quality:


The KEFINE Klanar has a sturdy monitor housing made of a 5-Axis machined single piece of aluminum alloy with a black anodized finish. The monitor housing is designed to be as small as possible, with a shell wall thickness of only 0.2mm at the thinnest point.

20231007_190418-01-scaled.jpeg


Inside the monitors is a 14.5mm large planar magnetic driver unit with a PET composite diaphragm, N55 magnet and customized driver construction.

Klanar-Planar-Driver.jpg


The faceplate has a simple and elegant design, featuring the KEFINE logo in the center of a circular shape.

20231007_190508-01-scaled.jpeg


The inner cavity has two openings, the L (left earpiece) / R (right earpiece) makings and the slightly angled sound nozzle. On the top of each nozzle is a metal filter in order to prevent the insertion of unwanted particles such like dust or earwax, which has a nice texture. Here are also a two pressure relief holes.

20231007_190521-01-scaled.jpeg


On the top of the monitor shell is the 0.78mm diameter 2-Pin female connector interface that offers a tight connection.

20231007_190634-01-scaled.jpeg


The KEFINE Klanar comes with an innovative 4 core dual-wire cable design combines two distinct components, which is the OFC (Oxygen Free Copper) litz wire with a brown and the silver-plated copper litz wire cable with a black insulation outlay.

20231007_191235-01-scaled.jpeg


Each core features 54 strands that makes 216 strands in total.

Klanar-Planar-Cable.jpg


The cable has a braided design and a relative soft TPU insulation that shows a pretty low amount of microphonic effect.

20231007_191326-01.jpeg


The 2-Pin connectors do have a plastic housing; the L/R markings are not very visible. Near the left and right connectors are heat shrink ear guides for extra comfort on the go.

20231007_190739-01-scaled.jpeg


There cable comes with a metal y-splitter & chin slider with a black anodized fisnish, while the y-splitter sports the Klanar branding on its surface.

20231007_190818-01-scaled.jpeg


The detachable cable is available in two different headphone plugs terminations, which are the one with a 3.5mm Single Ended interface and the one with a 4.4mm Balanced (TRRRS) plug interface that you can chose when your order the monitors. My review unit came with the 3.5mm Single Ended plug variant that features a straight profiled metal housing with the same black fisnish that has the KEFINE branding.

20231007_190829-scaled.jpg


The build quality of both the monitors and the detachable cable is decent!


Comfort & Isolation:

I relay like the monitor shape of the KEFINE Klanar, which fits perfectly to my medium sized ears and it does not hurt my concha even after longer listening periods. The passive noise isolation of the monitors is on an average level that is sufficient suitable for the use in relative noise environments such like a bus or a train.
20231007_190427-01-scaled.jpeg



Pairing & Drivability:

The KEFINE Klanar is not a hard to driver Planar IEM despite its relative large 14.5mm diameter Planar Magnetic Driver unit. It has an rated impedance of 16Ω and a sensitivity of approx. 105dB, which makes it compatible with sources like a USB DAC/AMP dongles (FiiO KA1) or smaller sized DAP’s (Hidizs AP80) with limited amplification capabilities. However, I have heard an audible improvement in terms of sound performance when I have hooked the Klanar to a desktop amplifier like the FiiO K9 and Topping DX5 Lite, which showed a better sense dynamics and a more expansive soundstage presentation.

20231007_191323-scaled.jpg



Technical Specifications:
  • Model : Klanar
  • Driver Unit : 14.5mm dia. Planar Magnetic Driver
  • Sensitivity : 105dB +/- 3dB
  • Impedance : 16Ω
  • Frequency Response : 20 Hz – 40 KHz
  • Connector Interface : 0.78mm dia. 2-Pin
  • Plug : 3.5mm Single Ended or 4.4mm Balanced
  • Cable Length : approx. 120cm

Equipment’s used for this review:
  • IEM’s : KEFINE Klanar
  • Sources : FiiO M11 Plus, FiiO K9, FiiO KA13, Topping DX5 Lite

Albums & Tracks used for this review:

  • Adele – My Little Love (Spotify)
  • Randy Crawford – On Day I Will Fly Away (Flac 16bit/44.1kHz)
  • Hayley Westenra – Odyssey Album (Dezzer HiFi)
  • Dionne Warwick – Walk On By (Flac 16bit/44.1kHz)
  • Sarah McLachlan – Angel (Flac 24bit/48kHz)
  • Sertap Erener – Aşk (Flac 16bit/44.1kHz)
  • Edith Piaf – Non Je Ne Regrette Rien (Flac 16bit/44.1kHz)
  • Diana Krall – So Wonderful (DSF)
  • Aretha Franklin – I Say A Little Payer (Flac 24bit/96kHz)
  • Sonya Yoncheva – (Giuseppe Verdi) II Trovatore, ActI (Flac 24bit/96kHz)
  • George Michael – Don’t Let the Sun Go Down on Me (Flac 24bit/192kHz)
  • David Bowie – Heroes (Flac 24bit/192kHz)
  • Elton John – Rocket Man ((Flac 24bit/96kHz)
  • Barry White – Just The Way You Are (Flac 24bit/48kHz)
  • Isaac Hayes – Walk On By (Flac 16bit/44.1kHz)
  • Sting – Englishman in New York – (Flac 24bit/48kHz)
  • Eric Clapton – Wonderful Tonight (Flac 24bit/96kHz)
  • B.B. King – Riding With The King (Tidal Hi-Fi)
  • Dave Gahan – Kingdom (Tidal Hi-Fi)
  • U2 – Sunday Bloody Sunday (Flac 16bit/44.1kHz)
  • Billie Eilish – Bad Guy (Deezer HiFi)
  • Imagine Dragons – Believer (Deezer HiFi)
  • Bro Safari, UFO! – Drama (Deezer HiFi)
  • Armin Van Buuren – Vini Vici (Flac 16bit/44.1kHz)
  • Daft Punk – Doin’ it Right (Flac 24bit/96kHz)
  • Jo Blankenburg – Meraki (Spotify)
  • Lorde – Royals (Flac 24bit/48kHz)
  • Massive Attack – Angel (Flac 24bit/48kHz)
  • Toutant – Rebirth (Deezer HiFi)
  • Gogo Penguin – Raven (Flac 24bit/192kHz)
  • Gogo Penguin – Murmuration (Flac 24bit/192kHz)
  • Portishead – It Could Be Sweet (Spotify)
  • Max Richter – On the Nature of Daylight (Flac 24bit/96kHz)
  • Charly Antolini – Duwadjuwandadu (Flac 24bit/192kHz)
  • Ferit Odman – Look, Stop & Listen (Flac 24bit/192kHz)
  • Chopin – Nocturn No. 20 In C-Sharp Minor (Flac 16bit/44.1kHz)
  • Fazıl Say – Nazım Oratoryosu (Live) (Flac 16bit/44.1kHz)
  • Vivaldi – Le QuarttroStagioni “The Four Season” (Deezer HiFi)
  • Otto Liebert & Luna Negra – The River (Flac 24bit/192kHz)
  • Lunatic Soul – The Passage (Flac 16bit/44.1kHz)
  • Deftones – My Own Summer (Shove it) (Flac 16bit/44.1kHz)
  • Metallica – Sad but True (Flac 24bit/96kHz)
  • Metallica – Master of Puppets (Flac 24bit/96kHz)
  • Opeth – Windowpane (Flac 16bit/44.1kHz)
  • Megadeth – Sweating Bullets (Tidal Hi-Fi)
  • Rush’s – Leave That Thing Alone (Flac 16bit/44.1kHz)
  • Slayer – Angel of Death (Spotify)
  • Liquid Tension Experiment 2 – Acid Rain (Spotify)
  • Yosi Horikawa – Bubbles (Spotify)

20231007_190301-01-scaled.jpeg




The Sound:


The KEFINE Klanar is an In-Ear Monitor that impresses with its clarity, power and fun tuned sound. It has a warm touch to its tonality that complements its lively and detailed sound profile. The bass is strong and controlled, the midrange is transparent and natural, and the treble range is produced in a smooth and relaxed manner, which avoids any shoutiness even at higher volume levels.

This review has written after a burn-in period of about 60 hours. I have used the stock balanced silicone ear tips and the stock 4core cable that are included inside the package. My sound impressions below are based on my auditions with devices like the FiiO M11 Plus ESS (DAP), FiiO KA13 (USB DAC) and Topping DX5 Lite (Desktop DAC/Amplifier).

20231007_191228-01-scaled.jpeg


Bass / Midrange / Treble / Soundstage & Imaging:


The KEFINE Klanar is a pair of IEMs that delivers a deep and powerful bass response, thanks to its 14.5mm Planar Magnet Driver that enhances the subbass area. The subbass region is one of the strengths of the Klanar, as it provides a satisfying level of depth, authority and extension, while listening to songs like Billie Eilish’s “Bad Guy”, Daft Punk’s “Doin’ it Right” and Imagine Dragons’ “Believer”, which are reproduced with a great sense of punch and rumble.

The midbass region is another aspect where the Klanar excels, as it produces a warm and full sound that complements the subbass region. The midbass region does not exhibit any signs of distortion or bleeding, and handles instruments like bass drums, bass guitars and pianos with ease.

20231007_190216-01-scaled.jpeg


The KEFINE Klanar offers a pretty musical midrange presentation that is produced with a warmish tonality and in a fairly natural and balanced manner. The midrange of the Klanar is not affected by the lower frequency area, which surprised me since the bass is quite pronounced and is rendered with a good level of clarity and resolution, thanks to the well-adjusted upper midrange region.

The lower midrange of the KEFINE Klanar shows a moderate amount of body and depth when I have listen to male voices like Dave Gahan, Sting or Isaac Hayes and to instruments such like a violin and guitar, where I would wish a bit more body/fullness. The upper midrange on the other hand sounds more pronounced and lively compared to the lower midrange area and adds some good level of brightness and sparkle to the sound. Female voices and instruments like flutes, clarinets that have reproduced in a pretty clear and detailed manner and the grade of resolution is quite decent.

20231007_191319-01.jpeg


The lower treble region of the KEFINE Klanar is well rounded and is able to enhance the sense of clarity and brightness of this area. Strings, percussion and soprano voices do sound in general crisp and well defined. The lower treble region does not sound harsh or ear piercing, but rather smooth and balanced, which makes it ideal for longer listening periods and enjoyable for a wider variety of genres.

The mid treble region shows an audible roll-off that was audible when I have listen to cymbals and brass instruments. However, it does not make the Klanar do sound too dull and muted in this area. When it comes to the upper treble register, I can say that it adds some good sense of airiness and spaciousness to the sound. The Klanar performs well in this area, as it sounds airy and wide, and does not show any unwanted over sharpness. It is rather smooth and natural in this area, while the extension is a bit short.

20231007_191059-01-scaled.jpeg


The KEFINE Klanar has a suitable soundstage for a relative precise instrument placement. It offers a pretty airy and spacious soundstage atmosphere, while the sense of depth and wideness of the stage is on a sufficient level for a product at this price level.


Conclusion:

The Klanar is a successful step by KEFINE in to the world of In-Ear Monitors. It has a robust build quality and offers a comfortable wearing experience. This small and compact monitor is equipped with a relative large 14.5mm Planar Magnetic Driver that is able to produce a musical sound experience with its powerful yet controlled bass response, warmish but transparent and clean midrange tuning, and a treble presentation that offers enough airiness and sparkle without to sound muted or shouty in this area.

Thank you for the Read!​

Last edited:
  • Like
Reactions: RemedyMusic
RemedyMusic
RemedyMusic
An enjoyable read. Thanks for the review!
Moonstar
Moonstar

baskingshark

Headphoneus Supremus
Keep Kool and Kalm and Karry on!
Pros: Well accessorized
Comfortable ergonomics
Easy to drive
Solid technicalities
Consumer friendly V-shaped profile
Very decent timbre for a planar IEM
Cons: Below average isolation
Recessed midrange - not for mids lovers
Bass lacks texturing
DISCLAIMER

I would like to thank Kefine for furnishing this unit.
The Klanar can be obtained on Aliexpress (https://www.aliexpress.us/w/wholesale-kefine-klanar.html) or Amazon (https://www.amazon.com/dp/B0CKZ71VP3/kefine+klanar/) or Linsoul (https://www.linsoul.com/products/kefine-klanar)
[no affiliate links]

Klanar 7.jpeg



SPECIFICATIONS
  • Driver configuration: 14.5 mm planar driver with PET diaphragm
  • Impedance: 16 Ω
  • Frequency response: 20 Hz - 40 kHz
  • Sensitivity: 105 dB
  • Cable: 2-pin, 0.78 mm; OFC Litz silver-plated copper; option for 3.5 mm or 4.4 mm termination
  • Tested at $119 USD

ACCESSORIES

Other than the IEM, these are included:
- 3 pairs of wide-bore silicone tips
- 4 pairs of narrow-bore silicone tips
- Cable
- Carrying case

For gear residing just north of $100 USD, the accessories are more than decent, perhaps other than the lack of foam tips. A modular cable would have been the icing on the cake, but I guess adding more wishes in the accessories might jack the price up substantially.


Klanar 10.jpeg


2 variants of silicone tips are included. The wide-bore ones increase treble and soundstage, whereas the narrow-bore ones boost bass at the expense of a slight compression in soundstage.


Klanar 9.jpeg


The stock cable is an OFC Litz silver-plated copper one. It is quite tangle-free, with a chin cinch and minimal microphonics. During ordering, one can opt for a 4.4 mm or 3.5 mm termination, depending on your preferred source outputs.


Klanar 8.jpeg


Last but note least, Kefine has included a generic semi-rigid carrying case, with soft innards and inner webbing.

The rest of this review was done with the stock cable and stock narrow-bore silicone tips. No aftermarket accessories were used, so as not to add any confounders to the sound.


BUILD/COMFORT

The aluminum alloy housings feature a matte black anodized finish, via 5-axis CNC machining. The faceplate is also jet black, with Kefine's logo placed in the centre.

Klanar 4.jpeg

In these photos, I have left the protective stickers on the shells, as the faceplates may be scratched if one is not careful. It is a nice touch that the company has paid attention to such small details.


Weighing 12.6 g apiece, the earpieces are very light. Ergonomics are top-notch, with a smooth inner aspect with no weird protrusions to poke the ears. This IEM can be worn for long periods without much discomfort.

Klanar 1.jpeg



With 2 vents on each earpiece, isolation is below average. The Klanar can be used outdoors, but perhaps not in very noisy environments, to protect hearing health. I did not find any driver flex on my pair.

Klanar 2.jpeg



2-pin connectors are always welcome in my book, compared to budget MMCX, which may fail with repeated cable swaps.

Klanar 3.jpeg



INTERNALS

The Klanar utilizes a 14.5 mm planar driver with a PET composite diaphragm and an N55 magnet.


DRIVABILITY

I tested the Klanar with the following sources:
- Apple dongle
- Cayin RU7
- Fiio K11 DAC/amp
- Fiio KA13 dongle
- Hiby R3 Pro Saber 2022 DAP
- Khadas Tone Board -> Schiit Asgard 3 amp
- Questyle M15 DAC/AMP dongle
- Sony Walkman NW A-55 DAP (Walkman One WM1Z Plus v2 Mod)
- Sony Walkman NW A-55 DAP (Walkman One Neutral Mod)
- Sony Walkman NW WM1A DAP (Walkman One WM1Z Plus v2 Mod)
- Smartphone

The Klanar is easily driven from weaker sources, though amplification might assist in scalability.


SOUND & TECHNICALITIES

Kefine Klanar.jpg

Graph of the Kefine Klanar via IEC711 coupler. 8 kHz area is a coupler artefact peak.


Tonally, the Klanar sports an unashamed V-shaped profile. With a big bass, it lies on the slightly warmer side, and the tuning is "musical" and "fun", which should suit consumer preferences in general.

Bass is focused predominantly in the sub-bass, with decent extension and rumble. As described, this IEM is bassy, though not at outright basshead quantities. Quality wise, texturing is slightly lacking, though bass is nimble with just a sprinkling of mid-bass bleed.

As per the V-shaped signature, the Klanar is recessed in the lower midrange. This region may be thin-sounding - vocal and midrange lovers might need to look elsewhere as such. With a 9 dB ear gain that is balanced out by the big bass, the upper mids are forwards without veering much to shouty territory.

Treble has moderate extension, though this isn't a very sparkly or airy IEM. There's just slight sibilance, and the Klanar probably lies on the safer side of the equation for the treble frequencies.

Timbre is quite well-done for a planar IEM. I daresay it fares better in this department than some planar benchmarks like the Shuoer S12 or 7Hz Timeless.

Like most planar containing transducers, the Klanar has commendable technical chops. For a budget planar IEM, transients, imaging and instrument separation are quite solid. Soundstage is above average in width, though depth and height are average.


COMPARISONS

Comparisons were made with other sub $150 planar IEMs. Hybrids, tribrids, single DDs and pure BA types were left out of the equation as the different transducers have their pros and cons.

Klanar 6.jpeg



Tangzu Zetian Wu (Original)

The Zetian Wu is darker in the upper frequencies and more boomy in the bass, with more marked mid-bass bleed. The Zetian Wu is weaker in technicalities, with less micro-detailing and instrument separation, and a more compressed soundstage.

However, the Zetian Wu has a thicker note weight and is slightly better in timbre.

The original Zetian Wu is no longer in production, but it was retailing at around $150 USD at launch, so in terms of price-to-performance ratio, the Klanar shades it. There are some QC reports on forums of the Zetian Wu's nozzle chipping, which is a bit worrying. Another thing to note is the Zetian Wu requiring more power to drive.


Shuoer S12 Pro

The S12 Pro has a brighter V-shaped tuning. It is more fatiguing in the treble, with more sibilance, compared to the warmer and more sedate Klanar.

The S12 Pro has a more artificial timbre, albeit it boasts of better micro-detailing and imaging. Soundstage is superior on the Klanar though.

The S12 Pro is slightly harder to drive.


CONCLUSIONS

Klanar 5.jpeg


Considering this is Kefine's first IEM release - and retailing at low $100ish - the Klanar is quite a competitive planar pair.

Ergonomics and accessories are up-to-the-mark, and it is easily driven. The consumer friendly V-shaped profile brings lots of "musicality" and "fun" to the table. Timbre is also commendable for a planar containing set, and technicalities are nothing to sniff at for the coin.

As per most V-shaped fare, this might alienate midrange and vocal lovers, who might find this region thin. The Klanar's bass could also do with better texturing, but that is not a deal-breaking flaw in the big scheme of things.

For folks looking to enter the planar foray, the Klanar does most areas to a satisfactory degree, and is an option to consider, perhaps other than if you are allergic to a V-shaped recessed midrange.
Last edited:

ICYGENIUS

New Head-Fier
Kefine Klanar review of planar iem by ICYGENIUS 🎧
Pros: Excellent planar headphones for the first acquaintance
Nice technicality
Detailed sound
Excellent bass control and attack
Great bass texture
Mids are transparent
Neat and not bright upper mids
High frequencies are detailed and restrained
A lot of air
Very wide sound stage
Cons: The mids are a little recessed, but this also happens in other planar headphones
Introduction!
Today we’ll talk about planar headphones from the company Kefine, costing $119, and probably many of you have a question about what this new brand is, and in short, this new company is closely related to Sivga, and this is their first new product, which is called Klanar.
And they come in a rather medium box with a picture of the headphones themselves on the front and the name of the brand and model here.
IMG_20231017_132448_165.jpg

And keep in mind that you will have the opportunity to choose a model with a balanced cable for 4.4jack, or a regular 3.5jack, as in my case, as evidenced by this green mark here.

IMG_20231017_132511_573.jpg

Well, at the back, as always, are the technical characteristics of the headphones.
IMG_20231017_132523_736.jpg

And the 14.5mm planar driver is responsible for the sound, and the sensitivity of the headphones is 105dB and their resistance is 16Ohms, according to the requirements for the amplifier, they are approximately at the level of Tangzu Zetian Wu or Shuoer S12, if any, or did you have these planar models, I think you already have a rough idea of what kind of amplifier they will need.

Let's take a look at what's included!
And the first thing we are immediately greeted with here are the headphones, which are very securely fixed, and they look quite good and are black in color and are completely made of aluminum alloy, so they are very light and have quite neat edges.
IMG_20231017_132716_384.jpg

And on the front panel here they have the name of the Kefine brand and of course, according to the standard, they have a 2-pin connector installed here, and on the inside there are markings for the right and left earphones, and two acoustic holes, and their nozzle is quite elongated and has an insert inside with an unusual pattern.
IMG_20231017_132813_401.jpg

And their nozzle is quite elongated and has an insert inside with an unusual pattern.

IMG_20231013_125352_918.jpg

Ergonomics and convenience.
Well, the fit and comfort of the headphones is generally excellent; they fit quite tightly to the ear and provide good sound insulation.
Accessories.
Well, in this miniature case with the inscription Kefine, there is a rightfully excellent 4-core copper cable that received 2-pin connectors for connecting to headphones and a 3.5jack plug in my case, the cable is really good, does not get tangled, and I personally have no questions about its convenience I wouldn't even change it.
IMG_20231017_132955_847.jpg
IMG_20231017_133051_891.jpg

IMG_20231017_133111_312.jpg
IMG_20231017_133128_887.jpg

IMG_20231017_133159_825.jpg

And of course, there is a good set of ear pads that you can use with headphones without problems.
IMG_20231017_133217_266.jpg

How do these headphones sound?
Well, now let's talk about the sound of these planar headphones Kefine Klanar.
I used and listened to them with a Topping G5 DAC.
This is what the frequency response graph of these headphones looks like and you can even see my target which I made just the other day and surprisingly the headphones are quite close to it, but in reality it is a very strong sounding headphone with a slightly more recessed middle due to which the vocals do not play close to us, as in many headphones, but a little distant.

Bezymyanny.jpg

Low Frequencies :
The bass on these headphones has a distinctive planar signature, and feels very textured and well controlled, and it's worth saying that the low frequencies are noticeably so focused on the energy and depth of the sub-bass, complemented by a slight and proper boost to the mid-bass punch with good weight and mass.
And it feels like such an energetic and very dense attack blow, but with the textural elaboration and transmission of various harmonics at low frequencies, everything is in perfect order here, the distortion effects of the guitars are very clear and quite legible, and this is exactly what I expected to get from a planar driver.

Mid Frequencies :
Well, the mid-range sounds quite pleasant and I would characterize it as clean and transparent with the vocals correctly formed in space, although slightly moved away from us, and a really good amount of air to better separate the vocals from the instruments, due to which this area does not sound somehow dull and it’s dark and it’s not presented to you in a crumpled way, but on the contrary, everything is conveyed very accurately and separately.
Yes, and I liked that the vocals do not feel relaxed and blurry, on the contrary, they are quite well focused in such a wide space and sound rich and detailed.
Well, it’s also good that the headphones don’t merge the sound into mush and into one whole, even in overloaded and heavy tracks, and the planar clearly makes itself felt here.
And the upper middle is very slightly emphasized and presented quite neatly, and the female vocal remains quite restrained and does not become flashy, it has good saturation and excellent transmission of voice timbres.

High Frequencies :
Well, the high frequencies in the Kefine Klanar feel smoother and less warm than the midrange, and properly restrained, they do not go into some kind of excessive brightness and harshness with a metallic color on the cymbals, as can be found in other planar headphones.
I like that they retained the technicality and made exactly the right sustained bias in technique rather than in smoothed and warm musicality, and they try, first of all, to attract you with their resolution and elaboration of after-sounds and various tails from reverberations, which are very long here.
I also liked that they are devoid of sibilance and sharp peaks, and at the same time extract a fairly good amount of detail and have excellent analytics, due to which, of course, the headphones are a little critical of recordings, but in general they reproduce everything without problems.

Stage and stereo panorama :
Well, the sound stage actually surprised me in these headphones, that is, in all other planars of such depth and width, I really haven’t seen it. From the first listen, I noticed that the sound field here just reminded me of my open full-size headphones where everything goes beyond your head, and This is much more interesting and effectively immerses you in the music, in my opinion, and it sounds somehow more atmospheric.
My conclusion on these headphones :
Kefine Klanar turned out to be rightfully excellent planar headphones, with a detailed and technical sound with excellent attacking and textured bass and without unnecessary sharp accents at high frequencies, but a good focus on analytics with a reliable and detailed transmission of the mid-range makes them very advantageous in this price category for those who want to try planar headphones, I think they are perfect for a first acquaintance.
IMG_20231017_133357_114.jpg

Link where you can buy them!
https://www.linsoul.com/products/kefine-klanar
Icygenius was with you, I will be glad if you subscribe to my YouTube channel and watch this full review on Kefine Klanar:
A
audiophilius
New nice review, thanks so much mate!!!
ICYGENIUS
ICYGENIUS
RobertM98
RobertM98
These look quite interesting. My have to check these out soon
Back
Top