Headphones and Coffee

Previously known as Wretched Stare
Good performance
Pros: Planar goodness
Rich textured mids, Bass with control, treble that has energy.
Cons: Needs power to shine, cable is just okay.





Plug type

Pin Type

Cable Type
Silver-plated cable

Cable length

Wearing type

The packaging, accessories and cable are all typical for KZ, I would have liked one of their better flagship cables but this one does in a pinch.

Ergonomics are above average, and I found the comfortable with good isolation. The build quality is very good, and they look great too. This one has a resin back like the Standard PR1. I'll be judging this on the PR1 HiFi as I didn't have the pro or standard.

Sound quality and impressions:
The Bass, lows on the PR2 are surprisingly nimble. this is planar bass done well. Both Mid and Sub have impact and texture with good depth and speed. Its detailed and almost Dynamic in presentation.
The Midrange:
Mids are rich but not over emphasized they are just perfectly focused; they have good body and texture to them.
The highs:
Treble has a nice airy and open sound with high details and a well-controlled extension, there is zero harshness on this part at normal volume.
The staging is wide and deep with an accurate and detailed placement.

The HBBxPR2 is one of those exceptions to the rules. Its a planar with planar Mids but has a more dynamic sounding bass. There is good resolution and details but it also very enjoyable and fun to listen to.

Good review!

I enjoy the PR2 only with some EQ on it (with Equalizer APO)
I must add 2.5dB between 400Hz and 1000Hz for giving the male voices more thickness

Without EQ, I prefer the KZ A16Pro High Impedance
Just got a pair of these and agree with you on the review. I use a Topping A30Pro and E50 DAC and these are the first IEM's out of dozens including several planars I have to be halfway into medium gain for. For power, these are like the Hifiman HE6se of in ear monitors. It's worth it, still can't believe I got them from Aliexpress for $36 which is the value for money winner this year. The Yincrow X6 and Simgot EA500 are winners too at their price points. Anyone with planar magnetic wonderlust should have a pair of these, as long as you have enough power (current) to really give them the beans. If you use a DAP, good luck with battery life on these. I'm at 12 oclock on a Topping A30 Pro, which is the same position as the Hifiman HE5xx I use sometimes.

Pritam Halpawat

New Head-Fier
Musical Brilliance Unveiled
Pros: Engaging and well-tuned sound signature
Textured midrange and musical treble
Good sub and mid-bass response for a planar driver
Comfortable design for short listening sessions
Cons: The fit might be less comfortable for users with smaller ears
No carry case or pouch
Cable quality is average
KZ x HBB PR2 Planar Magnetic IEM Review_ Musical Brilliance Unveiled.png


In this review, we delve into the world of the KZ x HBB PR2 Planar Magnetic Driver IEM, a remarkable collaboration between popular YouTuber HBB and KZ Audio. With a 13.2mm Planar Magnetic Driver at its core, this new in-ear monitor promises a significant advancement in the planar magnetic in-ear monitor vertical. Join us as we explore whether the KZ x HBB PR2 is a must-have addition to your audio arsenal.

For our evaluation, we employed the EarAudio Phantom Cable (4.4mm) along with SpinFit CP100 Plus Eartips. The audio source was a Questyle M15 DAC, connected to both a MacBook Air and an iPhone 12.

KZ x HBB PR2 Planar Magnetic IEM Review: Musical Brilliance Unveiled

Design and Build Quality

The KZ x HBB PR2 Planar Magnetic Driver IEM boasts a plastic open-back faceplate adorned with a lustrous Metallic paint finish. A metal mesh on the plate serves both an aesthetic purpose and a functional one by protecting the drivers from dust intrusion. The inner shell, constructed from high-quality transparent plastic, provides a captivating view of the drivers and internal components. However, it's worth noting that the cable design remains consistent with other KZ IEM models.

Comfort and Fit

During my experience with the KZ x HBB PR2, comfort was generally satisfactory for shorter listening sessions. Yet, for extended periods of use, users might need to experiment with different eartips to achieve an optimal fit. I personally found success with Spinfit CP100 Plus and the included stock foam eartips. Although KZ offers Starling silicone eartips, SpinFit CP100 Plus emerged as my preference. It's important to mention that users with smaller ears might encounter some discomfort with the fit of the KZ x HBB PR2.

KZ x HBB PR2 Planar Magnetic IEM Review: Musical Brilliance Unveiled

Sound Quality

The sound quality of the KZ x HBB PR2 left an indelible impression. Having previously admired Letshoure S12 Pro, Timeless OG, and AE versions, the PR2 has prompted me to consider setting them aside. Characterized by an energetic, faster, and leaner sound signature, the KZ PR2 delivers an exceptionally musical experience.

  • Bass: Contrary to the typical limitations of sub-bass reproduction in Planar driver IEMs, the KZ PR2 pleasantly surprises with its well-defined sub bass and mid bass. The bass response is swift, accompanied by a satisfying punch and slam. While not as thick as dynamic drivers, it outperforms most Planar counterparts.
  • Midrange: The midrange exhibits remarkable texture and emotion, devoid of sibilance or harshness. Male and female vocals sound vividly realistic, boasting tonal authenticity. Even amidst complex tracks, individual artists' voices emerge with distinct clarity. The KZ PR2's midrange performance is, without a doubt, a highlight.
  • Treble: The treble resonates with crispness, clarity, detail, and musicality. Addressing user feedback regarding treble sharpness, KZ has made substantial improvements in recent IEM releases. The KZ PR2's treble region engages listeners with its smooth and captivating delivery. Complex tracks are presented with impeccable clarity and layering, allowing nuances to shine. Overall, the treble is finely tuned, capturing every sonic detail.
  • Soundstage: The soundstage, while not expansive, provides a sense of proximity, enveloping the listener in the music.
  • Imaging: The imaging is commendable, surpassing most IEMs within the sub-10,000 INR range.
KZ x HBB PR2 Planar Magnetic IEM Review: Musical Brilliance Unveiled

Value and Competition

Comparing it to the CCA PLA13, the sole planar driver IEM under 5000 INR, the KZ PR2 emerges as the clear victor. While the PLA13 leans towards brightness and excessive bass, resulting in average sound quality, the KZ PR2 shines with its balanced sound profile. Boasting quality bass, textured midrange, and melodious treble, the KZ PR2 is an undisputed champion in this category.

Pros and Cons

Pros Cons
Engaging and well-tuned sound signatureFit might be less comfortable for users with smaller ears
Textured midrange and musical trebleNo carry case or pouch
Good sub and mid bass response for a planar driverCable quality is average
Comfortable design for short listening sessions
KZ x HBB PR2 Planar Magnetic IEM Review: Musical Brilliance Unveiled


In conclusion, the KZ x HBB PR2 Planar Magnetic Driver IEM is a triumph in audio engineering. With an artful design, commendable build quality, and a sound profile that excites the senses, it undoubtedly surpasses expectations. Whether you're a seasoned audiophile or a newcomer to the world of high-fidelity sound, the KZ PR2 promises a captivating listening journey. Its superbly balanced sound signature, rich midrange, and articulate treble make it a strong contender in the competitive world of IEMs. For anyone seeking an affordable yet exceptional planar magnetic IEM experience, the KZ x HBB PR2 is a resounding recommendation.


New Head-Fier
The most expensive cheap IEM!
Pros: +Price
+Resolution and technicalities are above the price range
+Timbre sounds natural-ish
+Good quality tips (specially memory foam ones)
+Amazing treble
+Enjoyable overall
Cons: - Needs more amplification than usual to get the best
- Treble might be harsh for some
- There are, at least, two versions
- Should've come with a balanced cable or interchangeable plugs
Disclaimer: I bought this pair of IEMs with my own money. What you’re about to read is my experience with the unit I bought and it doesn’t need to define your experience, which may vary with mine. KZ didn’t pay me anything to do this review and I'm not affiliated with KZ. Also, I don’t have equipment to measure the graphs for frequency response, and I may not use audiophile terms and words which may be regularly used for others, I just want to share my opinion with anyone interested in buying or trying this IEM.

First of all, I have to talk about the controversy with this IEM: For the moment I’m writing this, there are 2 known versions of this IEM, the one with a black mesh visible in front of the drivers (I’ll call it V1) and the version without the visible black mesh (I’ll call it V2). Most reviewers seem to have received the V1 variant, which seems to be part of the first batch, so it seems to be almost impossible to obtain at this moment. V2 is the variant I own, and most likely the variant you’ll be getting if you order this IEMs right now, and you may wonder, what’s the difference between this versions? Well, to be honest, because I don’t own V1, I can’t say for sure, but it seems there is a difference in treble: V1 has a more controlled and less sibilant treble, while V2’s treble seems to have harsh peaks. We’ll talk more about this in the next sections of the review, but I tell you this because it’s something you may need to take into account if you’re planning to buy this pair.
For the reasons explained before, this review will be about V2 variant of the PR2s and not the V1 variant. With that in mind, I must say that this particular IEM has blown my mind (for good) and I aim to answer to most questions some may have about this IEM.

The PR2 comes in the typical small KZ box. Personally, I like it, it is small and easy to save somewhere. The important thing is what is inside the box: When you open the box, the PR2s flashy metal mesh will be shown. The cable included is the typical KZ cable which is just OK, not good nor bad, just OK. Personally, I’d prefer a different cable which may have replaceable plugs (will talk more about this later in the review), but it will have a rise in the price too. Lastly, the tips included are KZ’s star tips, which comes in 3 different pairs, one for every size (small, medium, big). Along with the typical silicone start tips, a pair of memory foam (good memory foam) comes inserted already in the IEM.
Note here: Some units of the PR2 seems to have changed the medium size for a different pair of tips (these have almost the form of a memory foam, but aren’t memory foam), I don’t own these pair of tips, these didn’t come included in my package.


Design and comfort
To be honest, the PR2’s are big IEMs, but lightweight at the same time. You can see in the back of the PR2’s the metal mesh that adds an aesthetic and flashy design. Because of this big metal part, the IEM seems to be thick and big when you are wearing it. Still, as said before, it doesn’t feel uncomfortable, but rather just big. If you have small ears, it may not be comfortable nor easy to wear, but otherwise, it is fine.


I know, this is what everyone was looking for, right? Well, this is a complex section for me to write, but I’ll try to explain myself the best I can.
Remember what I said about a cable that comes with replaceable plugs? Well, this one needs it. Why? The PR2's need a good amount of amplification, and to get best out of this pair you'll need to use a balanced output. Looking at the technical specifications, impedance may not be much demanding with only 18 ohms, but sensibility is pretty low for an IEM. You'll need a desktop DAC or a dongle with balanced output. If your DAC doesn't provides a good amount of power, then the sound will be sibilant and very, very, lower in volume, it will not be a pleasant listening. Alongside with the amplification, you'll need to do a burn-in process. Trust me, just do the burn-in before listening to this hard-to-tame IEM, I found that it sounded better with low power sources after the burn-in (it may not do any miracles, but will sound better even if just by a bit).

The equipment I've used for this review is the following:
  • Hiby FC4 (4.4mm balanced output)
  • FiiO/JadeAudio KA3 (4.4mm balanced output)
  • LG V50 (3.5mm unbalanced output)
  • US Apple Dongle (European provides less power)

When I listened to the PR2s coming out of the box, the sound was fine overall, but treble was very agressive and very sibilant, even if it had enough amplification, was hard to listen to, specially if you're treble sensitive, because it may hurt. For this to solve, I did the burn-in process. When the burn-in process was completed, the treble changed a lot for good, the treble still sounded kinda agressive, but not sibilant, not a harsh or metallic treble, instead, it is very present in the audio scene, and very, very, detailed (maybe, the best treble I have listened to below the $50 bucks). When on balanced output, treble will be alright, but on unbalanced output, you'll need to do the burn-in first, and have a nice DAC (like the V50's Quad-DAC or better). On the Apple Dongle, for example, sound will be lifeless and feel empty even after the burn-in process, like you can hear the sounds but with no sense in listening, no good details and frecuencies were hard to distinguish, very low and even sibilant or a sensation of "distorted".

For me, bass is quite natural in the PR2s, but it is not the star of the show. The bass feels correct, with enough quantity a very high quality, well controlled. With that said, this is not an IEM for bassheads, or not for all bassheads. You can feel the rumble sometimes, the sub-bass is well defined, but there's not a high rumble coming from the mid-bass. Still, bass is quite enjoyable, but maybe not for everyone.

I must start this section saying that male voices are very enjoyable, they sound fun and correct at the same time, full of life, energetic. For example, most Queen songs are pretty amazing, it is an amazing experience to listen to Queen with the PR2s. Female voices, while having a good sound overall, they mostly feel correct with a good sense of enjoyment, not bad, but they're not near of the same enjoyment as the male voices. Overall, mids aren't behind other frequencies, they are well placed over the scene and you can distinguish between various voices that sounds at the same time. To me, mids are, probably, the best mids for $40. This is not a mid-focused IEM, but you can hear a lot of details with mids and still have a musical and fun experience.

Well, this is the part where I strongly recommend this IEM, but at the same time this is where many people won't like the PR2.
Treble, for me, is the star here. The details you can find in the treble, specially with genres such as classical, jazz, rock or metal, is something you'll hardly encounter with IEMs of higher prices, but it is highly fatiguing and very increased compared to the other frequencies, even flirts a little with sibilance (but when using with a proper source, sibilance is not a problem). No, it's not a piercieng treble, nor metallic, it won't hurt you, but is a hard to digest treble for some people. Highs have good extension, a high level of detail and sounds natural, like it should sound if you were near the source of this frequencies. The first thing you'll notice when you put on the IEMs is the treble. Also, treble does not opaque the bass nor mids. Treble is above average, superb, but fatiguing at the same level.

Overall, the sound provided by the PR2s when using a balanced output sounds natural to me, and very well detailed, with a nice soundstage and instruments well placed in the scene, you can distinguish every instrument and you can even make a distinction of the voices you can hear at the same time. Soundstage, for an IEM, is quite good, having nice distances between instruments.

For you to get and idea, maybe a comparison is needed to better explain the sound of the PR2. I must say that I don't own many popular IEMs and I can't do a further comparison because of that, but I hope you'll get an idea with these comparisons.

If you're coming from the EDX Pro, difference is abismal. EDX Pro has a lot bass (mostly, mid-bass), and the bass opaques all frequencies while PR2 has a natural bass, witch a bit of punchy sub-bass and a correct mid-bass, not leaving behind the other frequencies. PR2's mids are really above the EDX Pro's mids, and treble is just way inferior in every sense in the EDX Pro. Technicalities in the EDX Pro are nowhere near the ones you can find in the PR2, specially micro-details and instrument separation. Still, EDX Pro is nice for the lower budget of 10$, but the difference is abismal with a well powered PR2.

KZ ZS10 Pro X
The ZS10 Pro X's (I'll write ZPX for short) is, depending where you can get them, for almost the same price as the PR2. How does these, with the same brand, compare? I truly believe the two pairs are a Win-Win. ZPX is more fun-focused, having a more present bass, sub-bass and mid-bass, while the PR2's bass is "better" in a sense of naturality and feels more "real", the ZPX is a better suit for a basshead, PR2 have a notable ausence of bass presence. Mids, in both IEMs, are well defined, but are a bit behind (just a tiny bit, nothing to worry about) in the ZPX compared to the PR2. Treble is more "secure" in the ZPX, but not as well detailed as the PR2's treble (which is just amazing). Also, ZPX is needs way less power to sound amazing.
Both are amazing IEMs, and I love both (seriously, KZ is doing impressive with their latest products), but are so different and with different market targets. If you like bass and like to just enjoy music with no complications in the topic of DACs or whatever, go for the ZPX. If you own a powerful DAC/AMP combo and you'll like to listen to a planar driver, and you like natural and precise sound but still want to have fun and enjoy the music quite a lot, go for the PR2.

Moondrop Aria Snow Edition
How about comparing the PR2 against an IEM that's double the price? Well, I'm amazed that it performs well. Both sounds different, but still, both are awesome. Biggest difference is treble, which is way more controlled in the Aria SE, not fatiguing at all, but with less detail than the PR2. Even though the treble is lessen in the Aria SE, somehow it still is the star of the Aria SE, so both IEMs offer treble as the star, but treble is represented differently between the two options. Bass is more detailed in the Aria SE, and, overall, more present in the sound, but it is not always as natural and "real" as the bass offered by the PR2. Mids are more forwaded in the Aria SE as well, and female voices are truly a nice experience to listen to in the Aria SE, but male voices aren't that enjoyable compared to the male voices in PR2.
For my surprise, PR2 can compete face-to-face with $80 IEMs. For me, Aria SE is better in build quality (kinda, Moondrop assets aren't quality control after all) and is more comfortable than PR2, but audio quality is face to face (different sound signature, though).

Maybe, just maybe, the best sound within the $40 threshold (I know this is subjective, but I fell in love with these), but it actually goes beyond $40 because of the DAC and AMP (yes, it is needed for the PR2s to shine as they should). It is both superb, but not aimed to beginners in the hobby as you must own a good DAC/AMP combo. It is cheap, sure, but expensive at the same time. Even though it has some notorious cons, these are overshadowed by the pros, specially if you have a proper audio equipment and a balanced cable. There are probably better options at this price, considering the "requirements" of the PR2, but having met those requirements, these might probably be one of the better options under $100 dollars (or even more).


New Head-Fier
The most affordable detail beast! The KZ x HBB PR2
Pros: 1. Superb detail retrieval
2. Extremely extensive and airy treble
3. Clear and expressive mid range
4. Textured and quality bass
5. Great overall technical performance.
Cons: 1. Lean quality of notes
2. Sibilance sometimes surfaces.
3. Bass doesn't sound organic or thick.

Review OF The KZ x HBB PR2

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My first IEM that I owned was from KZ only, and as a result, I quickly grew to love all of their IEMs. I remember when I first got involved in the audiophile community and how it all began. KZ first showed me the world of possibilities I can achieve at that point. According to what I understand, KZ is the momentous occurrence that any newcomer experiences when they begin their journey to become an audiophile. Everyone in the audiophile community, in my opinion, is aware of KZ, a company that was established around 2010 and amassed a sizable following in a decade. If I say there is a KZ cult that follows them with every release, believe me. They recently received a lot of attention for their work with HBB in producing some of the most reasonably priced full-range planar IEMs, including the 7hz Timeless and the Shuoer S12. I will be reviewing their most affordable planar IEM, the KZ x HBB PR2, to determine whether they are actually worth the price or are just another generic IEM. Many people adore that IEM for its tuning, while others don't for some reason I don't fully understand. However, I want to make a few points clear before moving on.

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*Since this unit tour was organised by the kindly people at Linsoul, I am grateful to them. And as I've said in all of my evaluations, the same is true for this one: all of the concepts I've expressed below are entirely my own, original ideas that haven't been influenced by anyone else. If interested, go to this link.
*I am not associated with the connection, and I receive no financial assistance from anyone.
*For the remainder of the review, I will refer to these IEMs as "PR2."
*I am using different Ear-tips for convenience and better versatility.
*Finally, I will only evaluate the PR2 based on their performance, even though I will explain how it feels and seems physically and aesthetically.


The PR2 contains a planar driver, a 13.2mm planar unit with a 7+7 N52 rubidium magnet array and a silver-plated diaphragm in between. Even though the grills and mesh make it appear as though the IEM has an open back, it doesn't; the shells are made of resin with a faceplate made of an alloy of metal. The shells are fairly lightweight and felt comfortable to use even with its stock tips thanks to its ergonomic design, but I still preferred my AZLA Sedna crystal. Although some people may find it a little difficult to tolerate after longer hours of usage, I can say that during longer sessions I didn't feel exhausted and weary. The cable that is included with the PR2 is the generic KZ cable that KZ includes with all of their IEMs (aside from their more affordable models). The cable is silver-plated, and it works and feels fine as usual. Along with the cable and the IEMs, the package also includes three pairs of eartips in various sizes and two foam eartips. 94dB of sensitivity and 15 Ohms of impedance are the technical specifications. The range of the frequency response is 20Hz to 40kHz.

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The sound is excellent for the price these are being offered at. At first I thought using a full planar driver for such a cost might be a gimmick and well, these being cheap, I never anticipated such an overwhelming performance. It has been a while since I have had this much enjoyment from a KZ IEM. The problem is that this IEM captures your comprehension and demonstrates to you its potential. Due to its power requirements, I had to pair it with a special amp to hear how well it can sound. The more power it uses, the more nuanced and detailed it sounds. Even though there are a few minor flaws, the signature is generally very expressive and as detailed as it is possible to be. Its tonality isn't wonky or off-kilter; rather, it's airy, open, and a little lean with the notes, but they still kind of maintain their integrity. The mid range sounds very forward with an open presentation, and the treble is very detailed and airy sounding. Although the bass is light and not very dynamic, it nevertheless creates punches and slams that feel powerful. The response is, of course, extremely detailed and is audible in both the bass and the treble of the mix. Let's explore sound more thoroughly.

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The treble region, with its impressive extension and airy presentation, was the first to take me by surprise. Perhaps this is the first IEM in this price range that sounds this expressive and detailed. The notes have a tendency to sound metallic and sharp, but they sound so clear that everything sounds vibrant and sparkly. As the vocals sound fuller and kind of degrade into single notes, adding sibilance to the mix, the upper treble is extended significantly. Cymbal crashes and other similar sounds from instruments hit you clearly and retain their original identity. The vocals and the instruments both have a very refined response, but because of their extreme expressiveness, they are a bit much. However, the energy is constant in both the lower and upper treble. The vocals and instruments sound their best because of the lower treble's intense energy. While the instruments have a slightly tinny sound, the vocals are light and clear. The lower treble has a lively sound and produces faint nuances that are audible. Since no other IEM can match its technical performance or details, I'm unsure how to compare it to other IEMs in this price range, either in terms of how well they produce sound or how tonally balanced they sound. Therefore, the treble region's overall presentation is extensive, airy, and detailed, which has an extravagant feel to it.

Mid Range

The midrange is just as expressive as the lower treble, and the vocals and instruments are just as lively as they are in the treble range, so the energy doesn't fade away or get lost anywhere. With how the vocals come across, the PR2 sounds great. This region as a whole also feels the clarity and the details. The male vocals, in particular, sound really open and distinct with their presentation, whereas the female vocals sound light and airy, perhaps way too much, as the response brings out the notes' offensive side as they occasionally sound peaky. The upper mid range is expressive and very clear in response. On the other hand, the instruments have a clear production. The guitars and piano sound very detailed and fuller, even though the notes do not establish fully or richly because they somewhat lack note weight. The vocals are similarly lacking in note weight, but overall, the response is very clean. As the notes in the lower mid range are not particularly audible due to the tonal warmth or their naturalistic timbre, the range is relaxed and suppressed. The lack of note weight and density means that the notes either bring clarity or are not very audible. Even the bass guitar, which shouldn't sound vague and lean but nevertheless tries to be as presentable as possible, has a bland response to the vocals and instruments. Overall, the mid range has a lean, open, and detailed sound.


Since a Planar driver has a wet response when listened to, the PR2's response is consistent with that. This affects how the bass is reproduced. Even though the slams and punches are felt and audible, it lacks the organic quality and realistic vibe. The response is undeniably clear and accurate, but in my opinion the bass is far too accurate to sound dynamic and powerful. The control over the presence is also very effective. The punches are felt clearly even though the impact is not that strong in the sub bass, where the emphasis is. Additionally, the rumble's sensation is not very effective. Even though there are slams here and there, the impact of those slams is weak, so the mid bass comes across as lacking. The lack of presence in the mid bass is the cause of the lower mid range's depraved sensation. Thumps seem hollow to me. Despite being among the best I've heard on an IEM under this price, the bass texture and details are excellent. The bass lacks the influencing factor because it doesn't overpower or overemphasise in the mix, so it doesn't bloat or mess up the response. Overall, the bass region is clear, textured, and well-controlled.

Technical Performance

Although the speed and resolution of the KZ PR2 are great and the stage isn't particularly large, the technical performance is exceptional. The imaging and separation are both excellent. The only problem I can identify is with the minute details.

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Soundstage, Sound Imaging & Separation

Despite the fact that the sound is more to the left and right, the stage is wide enough to sound spacious, and the depth is also good. Due to the distinct and far separation of the pieces, it is simpler to identify the source of the sound. Although the imaging is clear and precise, I have heard that better planar drivers are available.

Speed & Resolution

Although this planar driver's resolution and detail levels are impressive for the budget, it is not very resolving when it comes to tiny details. The assault and fade of notes are quite fast, as one would anticipate from a planar driver.

Sound Impressions


Tempotec V6 - With the V6, the PR2 sounds incredibly detailed and open, with a treble that is expansive and airy, a midrange that is light and clear, and a bass that is punchy and textured. In terms of technical details, I think only the imaging and resolution were improved. The V6 and PR2 together is a combination that I really enjoy.

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iFi Hipdac - The Hipdac made the PR2 sound less expansive and a little offensive in the treble department while being more dynamic and boomy in the bass department. The vocals were a little bit piercing and the mid range came across as more forward. Other than these two, nothing in terms of technical prowess was impacted. The stage felt closer and the speed of resolution felt worse. I still prefer the pairing with the V6 even though the signature was entertaining and exciting.

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Tracks Used

Luna Haruna - Glory days
Luna Haruna - Overfly
Rokudenashi - The Flame of Love
LMYK - 0 (zero)
Marina Horiuchi - Mizukagami no Sekai
Indila - Love Story
Indila - Tourner dans le vide
Earth, Wind & Fire - September
Tom Petty - Free Fallin'
Fleetwood Mac - Everywhere
Nirvana - Smells Like Teen Spirit
Blue Oyester Cult - (Don't Fear) The Reaper
Guns 'N' Roses - Sweet Child O' Mine
The Police - Every Breath You Take
Gojira - Amazonia
TV on the radio - Wolf Like Me
Bring Me To The Horizon - Can You Feel My Heart
Bring Me To The Horizon - sTraNgeRs
Avril Lavigne - Dare To Love Me
Travis - Love Will Come Through
DJ Shadows - Six Days (Remix) [feat. Mos Def]
Lady Gaga - Just Dance
Lil Wayne - Lollipop
Flo Rida - Low
Sebastian Lopez & Flug - Electronic Measures
Federico Mecozzi - Blue (Da Ba Dee)
Wayve - Not Enough
Kai Wachi & TeZATalks - Ghost
NGHTMRE, Zeds Dead & Tori Levett - Shady Intentions
Zeds Dead, DNMO & GG Magree - Save My Grave
Skrillex, Noisia, josh pan & Dylan Brady - Supersonic
Skrillex & Nai Barghouti - Xena
Skrillex, Missy Elliott & Mr. Oizo - RATATA
Kaifi Khalil, Eva B & Wahab Bugti - Kana Yaari
A.R. Rahman, Javed Ali & Mohit Chauhan - Kun Faya Kun


To be honest, anyone can buy these at this price point with such great features and be happy. The PR2's price point, which KZ set at an incredibly clever level, bridges the gap between mid-range and budget-tier categories. The tone and technicality of the PR2 are excellent, and it is very simple to recommend.

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K othic

New Head-Fier
KZ PR2: black mesh luck
Pros: Solid build
Above average isolation
Musical while retaining aspects of real sounds
Powerful subbass impact
0 sibilance
Cons: Uncomfortable ergonomics for long listening sessions (subjective)
Does not offer a wide variety of ear tips
The cable is a limiting factor
PR2 different versions (see conclusion)

KZ went crazy and released the cheapest magnetic planar driver IEM on the market: the KZ PR2, a collaboration with the well-known Bad Guy Good Audio Reviews (BGGAR, also known as HBB), priced at approximately $35 USD.

Metal faceplate, magnetic planar driver for budget-conscious users, and on top of that, a collaboration with a famous reviewer? Mmm... Let's give them a try!

Video Review here

Previous Reviews here

If you wish to read this review in Spanish click


Unboxing, Build & Comfort

Despite deviating slightly from the more budget-friendly products offered by KZ, we have a presentation that is very similar to the one provided by the rest of the brand's cheaper IEMs.


The entire new range of IEMs KZ has been releasing features a very solid construction. Therefore, the housing of the PR2 is based on transparent resin and a faceplate made of a die-cast metal alloy, which features purely aesthetic grilles as these headphones are NOT open-back. They are relatively heavy in-ears, averaging around 9 grams (most resin-bodied IEMs weigh between 4 to 6 grams). However, it should be noted that the weight comes from the completely metal faceplate and the 13.2mm magnetic planar driver.



The package includes a pair of medium-sized foam tips and the well-known Starlines in sizes S, M, and L. Personally, I appreciated the variety of eartips (the inverted Starlines provide a more than decent seal), although coming from reviewing the Kiwi Ears Cadenza, I think KZ could have included a complete set of foam tips to provide a more comprehensive package.


As for the cable, I'd rather not bother talking about it. You already know it, 2-pin QDC with a 3.5mm termination, but I didn't use it because it didn't present the highs in a correct manner.

The comfort of the PR2 can be divided into two parts. First, with the included tips and also with others, they all provided a fairly good seal, making them good companions for daily commuting. However, in the second part, we have the weight and shape (which I didn't find particularly ergonomic), which made them a bit uncomfortable after the first hour of use. So, in terms of comfort, I would consider them average.

Driving power

This pair doesn't hold back and made me use the 9dB gain offered by the IFI ZEN Air CAN (for IEMs, I usually use it at 0). Additionally, when using the TempoTec Sonata HD PRO dongle at 100% volume, I had to increase the volume on my smartphone to 60-70%, whereas I usually use it around 30%.

PR2 + amp.jpg

Given this, if you're considering purchasing this pair of earphones, I would recommend having at least a dongle that has the ability to amplify from 60mW to 32 ohms or more (preferably more, the PR2 will thank you for it).

Frequency response description

Medición PR2.png

Credits: hbb
  • Subbass with significant weight
  • Fast bass with mild impact but allowing for a smooth transition
  • Slightly forward mids
  • Non-sibilant treble
  • Good amount of air

Subjective sound description (+ small comparisons with LETSHUOER S12 PRO)



The subbass is a clear standout in this tuning, retaining significant weight. Songs like Tove Lo's "Kick In The Head" become addictive thanks to the rumble achieved by the PR2, and I would even dare to say that it is more satisfying than that of the S12 PRO, extending a little further down in this range and allowing for an intense sensation when the volume is turned up with deeper bass. For electronic sub-genres like Dance, which focus on the lower regions of the spectrum, these KZ earphones are highly recommended.

This characteristic in the sound signature also means that in orchestras, the double basses and cellos have a more defined body when playing low notes, without overpowering other sounds (for example, the perceived depth around the 3:10 mark from the double bassists in Jean Sibelius' "Symphony No. 2 in D major, Op. 43: II. Tempo andante, ma rubato" performed by the Oslo Philharmonic Orchestra).

On the other hand, as is typical of planar drivers, the bass is fast but precise, with quick attack and decay, avoiding the bass from feeling visceral but still well-defined. In Swedish House Mafia's "Calling (Lose My Mind) (Extended Club Mix)," the drop demonstrates sub-bass with good extension into the deepest zone, which helps leave a lasting impression, while the rhythm carried by the bassline takes on a more secondary role, being more agile and less heavy.

This lower range is less prominent than in the S12 PRO, and despite having a similar prowess, I personally prefer the bass of the LETSHUOER IEM due to personal tuning preference.


Both male and female vocals have a certain sense of being forward in songs. They mostly sound natural and clear, although I found male vocals to be slightly more realistic than female vocals. This may be because I felt they provided a greater sense of tactility, while the female vocals felt slightly duller (without it being a significant issue, and objectively speaking, I think it is a well-achieved range nonetheless).

Singers with a higher register, like Bocelli, seem to be present in a similar quantity as female registers. That's why, when he sings alongside Gerardina Trovato in the album "Romanza," both can stand out at the same time. However, lower registers, such as Sinatra's, are represented with a bit more power and prominence, giving them a touch of authority. This allows the latter to always stay in the forefront in the song "Teach Me Tonight."

On the other hand, in songs where Adele's voice can sound quite sharp, such as "Rolling in the Deep," this characteristic is also noticeable, where her voice takes on significant prominence during the chorus.

Next, a brief description of what I experienced during "Symphony No. 8 in B minor, D. 759 'Unfinished': II. Andante con moto" by Schubert, performed by the Leipzig Gewandhaus Orchestra: exceptional articulation between the instruments in the mid and low ranges (violins, trumpets, and double basses) for this price range. Despite the violins being prominent in the first part of this piece, they do not sound piercing, yet retain the sensation of each note played. While the violins take center stage in this composition, when the cellos sound, they have an immaculate background presence that prevents them from getting lost and clearly respects the instruments that come before them. The same goes for the double bass when it appears on the scene. In the second part, the clarinet and oboe, leading to the culmination of the song, maintain their clarity but sound soft and silky to the ear.

Lastly, roughness and breaths during singing are heard clearly, as in the case of Dave Mustaine's raspy voice, which is very well represented, and the multiple breaths of Adele on the album "30."

I would say that, in terms of timbre accuracy, the PR2 brings the midrange frequencies forward, while the S12 PRO aims for a more neutral tuning. In terms of the ability to retain details in this range, the KZ falls just slightly short of the S12 PRO, which is a compliment considering that the PR2 costs three times less.



In my Heavy Metal library, I discovered that cymbals have a much more musical character in my opinion, and they are even more gentle to the ear than the S12 PRO (which subjectively also didn't strike me as particularly bright). They follow a “relaxed” tuning in the treble frequencies without becoming dark. Additionally, within the album "The Sick, The Dying... And The Dead!" by Megadeth, the small chimes during the introduction of the song "Dogs Of Chernobyl" also show no signs of brightness.

Precisely for this reason, they are not masters of detail in this area, but they are well-suited for long music sessions in any genre without leaving you fatigued, as they have a careful presentation in reproducing the treble. As I mentioned in my previous review, the S12 PRO also left me wanting a bit more detail in this range, so I would consider these IEMs to be quite on par in this aspect.

Soundstage & Imaging

To be completely frank, comparing the soundstage of the PR2 to the S12 PRO doesn't make much sense. The drivers of both earphones are capable of presenting a scene with sufficient width but with average depth based on my testing.

Image reproduction is a virtue inherent to planar magnetic drivers, and the PR2 is no exception. In songs like "Alta Suciedad" by Calamaro, where the guitars are played very close to each other, this earphone manages to make me distinguish which side each one is on. Similarly, in more complex orchestral works, using the example of the Gewandhaus Leipzig Orchestra I mentioned earlier, there were no issues discerning the positions occupied by each group (percussion on the right, low strings more towards the left, winds and violins around the center, etc.). Once again, it's a highly resolving driver that puts up a good fight against LETSHUOER’s IEM.


Honestly, in my experience, it was one of the best sets I have tried in these past few weeks, and it's truly amazing that an IEM in this price range can achieve this level of satisfaction for me. Unfortunately, this is where I have to address the title of the review: the PR2 is difficult to obtain due to the following reason:
  • KZ changed the design of the PR2 by removing the black mesh which covered the driver and relocating it elsewhere (according to some, to the nozzle of the earphone). This, in some cases, created variations in the treble, making it sound shrill and different from the initial tuning goal.

malla negra video.jpg

For this reason, the PR2 that you may purchase might be different from the one in this review, and because of that, I cannot give it a 5-star rating. I loved them, but I know other users’ experience may not be the same


100+ Head-Fier
KZ x HBB's PR2 Review - Planar IEM that doesn't break the bank!
Pros: High price performance ratio
Punchy bass and airy highs
Solid build quality
Cons: Need amping to sound good
Depending on eartips, the treble can be a little hot depending on the tracks (If it is underpowered, the treble will always remain smooth)

I don’t think there’s anyone who doesn’t know KZ (Knowledge Zenith), so I'm not going to go in depth about the intro of the company. There have been several releases which i have tested recently and i am recommending them in fact, namely the KZ ZVX and the D-Fi with switches. Today I have another new product which is a collaboration between KZ and HBB(Hawaiian Bad Boy). Those who have been following HBB are well aware of his preference in terms of tuning, which may or may not translate into the PR2.
In terms of packaging, there isn’t much to say, pretty much every KZ product shares the same packaging style. What’s inside the box is a cable, foam tips and the IEM itself.
The stock cable’s earhook is a little stiff and I struggled to properly secure the IEM in my ears, hence I trimmed the earhook away and the fit is good now, no issue with comfort even wearing them for a long listening session.

Gears used for this review
  • Earmen Angel Dac/Amp
  • Earmen ST-Amp
  • Hiby FC6
  • Sony WM1A
  • KZ x HBB PR2 Stock Cable and Eartips
My review is solely based on what I hear via my equipment and I never consider my reviews to be objective in any way rather a subjective approach. Do take into consideration that everyone’s ear anatomy is not the same, so the psychoacoustics perception might be different as well, but i believe it will not stray too far

Sound Impression
PR2’s tonality is leaning towards bright and energetic, there’s a hint of planar timbre but other than that, in terms of price performance ratio, it is really good. There is a reason why it came with foam tips instead of the usual KZ starline tips. I tried swapping to other eartips and the highs can really get fatiguing after a period of time

  • Bass is speedy but texture is not the best
  • Sub bass does rumble but it doesn’t go that deep to bass head territory, sufficient to add “fun” to overall listening experience
  • Mid bass is punchy
  • It does need power for the bass to come alive, when paired with a weak source, it is actually under performing
  • Mids are not recessed but not too forward either
  • Vocal has good enough texture and body for both male and female
  • Female vocal somehow sounded a little bit more energetic due to slight lift from the upper mids, but never shouty
  • Now this is the interesting part of PR2, they are borderline sibilant, depending on the eartips you are using. If you are using it with the stock foam eartips, then the treble won't sound sibilant nor harsh
  • If you are tip rolling and using other ear tips such as the starlines or other wide bore eartips, the treble can be hot depending on the music
  • Good amount of air and presence

  • Imaging is good as instruments can be pinpointed easily
  • Soundstage is good for the price, it is wide and have good depth to it, lacking height to contribute to overall in terms of sounding big, nonetheless, considered very good given the asking price
  • Well, this is the part where the PR2 takes a hit, it is hard to drive and it requires a moderate amount of amping to sound good (Well controlled bass and good dynamics)
  • Tried using it with Apple’s dongle and sure, it does sound loud but it is lacking in terms of dynamics, bass control and treble response as well
  • In short, you need a good source in order to push PR2 to its maximum performance


Final Thoughts
KZ has been known to release products with high price performance ratio, both the ZVX and D-Fi that i have reviewed previously sounds good and doesn’t break the bank. The same can be said for PR2 as well, if you have a good source and amp, it doesn’t have to be a top of the line amp or source, a dongle with reasonable power output of 2-300mw is sufficient to squeeze the juice out from the PR2, of course, it does scale with better source and amp, so just experiment and try it yourself and see which works for you. Overall, a recommended purchase because of its high price performance ratio.


PR2 was sent over by KZ for this review. I thank them for the opportunity as always.

Head over to the following store if you are interested in getting one

KZ PR2 Malaysia Shopee Store - Non affiliated
KZ PR2 Official Web Store - Non affiliated
Great review.
The KZ ZVX doesn't gives the details as the PR2 does.
The ZVX fits better (deeper) in my ears, but overall, the sound of the PR2 is much better.

Would the KZ AS24 even be better for details?
@hansnaert hey there, I can’t answer you that at the moment as I don’t have the AS24 yet, but I’ll update once I receive it. Cheers


500+ Head-Fier
KZ x HBB PR2 - KZ back on track!
Pros: - Very nice bass and good technical performance along with a warm U-shaped signature
- Comfortable to wear
- Nice build quality and clean design
- Affordable price for a planar set
Cons: - The low-end could use a bit more rumble
- Treble is still somewhat bright up top, at least brighter than the first graphs around
- A lot of power is needed in order to properly drive them, otherwise the treble can occasionally become splashy
- Could include a slightly better cable


2022 was a crucial year for Chi-Fi development and the planar war pushed brands to their boundaries in order to keep up with the latest technology.
Today, we are finally able to see planar IEMs in the budget segment too, and KZ was among the few that could really count on its scale economies to keep the price down and launch a very cheap planar set: this is where the KZ x HBB PR2 come into play.

Disclaimer: the KZ x HBB PR2 were provided by Tyvan Lam from Knowledge Zenith (KZ) free of charge in order to write an honest review. I do not represent them in any way and this is not promotional content.
At the time of the review, the KZ x HBB PR2 were sold on Aliexpress for around €50 on
KZ's official Aliexpress store.


Technical Specifications​

Configuration → 1 x 13,2mm Planar Magnetic Driver
Sensitivity → 94 ± 3 dB
Impedance → 15 ± 3 Ω
Frequency Response → 20 Hz – 40000 Hz
Cable → 1,2m silver copper cable with 0,75mm PINs, no microphone on this sample but a MIC version is available
Plug Type → L-type gold plated 3,5mm jack


The packaging is nothing special, just like the majority of KZ/CCA sets.
One thing I'd like to note is that the top cover is made of transparent plastic, the tips and the cable are contained in two separate small plastic packets, and considering that KZ mentions environmental protection I think they should start using cardboard instead of plastic.
The box contains:
  • The KZ x HBB PR2
  • A detachable cable
  • 1 x pair of foam tips, 3 x pairs of KZ Starline tips in different sizes
  • User manual

Design and Build Quality​

KZ x HBB PR2’s design is minimal with a reflective faceplate that makes them very sleek and the overall assembly and plastic quality is noteworthy.
One thing to mention is that the PR2 are thicker than the average IEM because of the fact that planar drivers usually take more space and need bigger shells, but there are no sharp edges or wings that could cause discomfort. Another good news is that the nozzle is a bit smaller than expected and I’m also happy to see that it ends with a small lip.




The cable is ages ahead of the old cables that KZ used to ship with their IEMs, while it is average for nowadays’ standards. In any case, it’s a solid cable and seems to be durable. Unfortunately, though, there’s no chin slider on it.


Comfort and Isolation​

The PR2 are very comfortable overall, this thanks to the small nozzle and the absence of shell wings. Those with very small ears, though, could face some fitting issues given the thick shells.
Isolation is only average, but that was to be expected considering the semi-open back design.



DAC: Topping E30
AMP: Topping L30
Mobile phones: Samsung Galaxy S7 Edge
Dongle: Apple Type-C dongle, Truthear SHIO
Portable DAPs: Benjie S8/AGPTEK M30B
Other sources: Presonus AudioBox iONE
Tips used: Stock KZ Starline tips

Do they need an amplifier?
They don’t strictly need an amplifier, but may sound a bit less loud on weak sources due to the low sensitivity. They also scale pretty well with some amplification.

Sound signature
The KZ x HBB PR2 are warm and follow a sort of more relaxed version of the Harman target.

Lows: sub-bass and bass are there in enough quantity to satisfy any listener and any genre. The sub-bass has nice extension and the sub-bass is well controlled and clean, even though it could use a bit more rumble.
The bass has nice textures and a nice punch too, and you also get all the benefits of a planar driver: speedier transients, drier and faster kickdrums and low decay, which lead to an overall more agile set.
The planar timbre of the bass is not completely gone, but many also like that kind of approach so it’s either good or bad news depending on the listener’s preferences.

Mids: the midrange is present and not recessed like on older KZ products.
Male vocals have good depth and don’t get masked by the mid-bass bleed, while female vocals are very energetic but occasionally show some sibilance.
Instruments are also well placed in the space and their timbre is not off, which is another noteworthy characteristic of the PR2.

Highs: highs have good extension and detail retrieval is good for the price bricket, but very small nuances aren’t an effortless task for the PR2.
There aren’t “fatiguing” peaks or harsh, but the treble can occasionally be somewhat capricious and slightly splashy if these are underpowered or plugged to weak sources (probably due to the cheap planar driver).
Those who are very sensitive may still feel the need for an even more relaxed set as the PR2 are still pretty bright, but in general the treble tuning is not bad and counterbalances the low-end nicely.

The soundstage is wide and has good depth too, height is average. Imaging is very good for the price and so is the instrument separation.
This definitely is one of the most advanced sets from KZ in terms of technical ability.

Some comparisons​

KZ x HBB PR2 vs Celest Pandamon

The Celest Pandamon isn’t a traditional planar, but it’s still a relevant set and almost shares the same price bricket with the KZ PR2.
The biggest difference is that the PR2 are more energetic, more fun, brighter and more detailed, whereas the Pandamon are more relaxed, more neutral and natural in bass and treble regions. Pandamon’s timbre is perfectly in-line with most dynamic driver IEMs out there, while the PR2 have a more planar-ish bass timbre.
Technical ability is not on very different levels so it all comes down to personal preferences and tastes.
When it comes to build quality and design, tho, the PR2 just nail it. The stock cable is average on both with no one really taking the lead. Comfort is better with the PR2, even though Pandamon is not bad either. PR2 isolate slightly better, moreover while using the stock foam tips.

KZ x HBB PR2 vs Celest Gumiho

Another very nice release from Celest, which came out even before the Pandamon.
The low-end on the Gumiho is more present and punchy and carries more weight than the PR2, but the latter are faster, more precise and have slower bass decay.
The midrange is more forward on the PR2 but the Gumiho has more energy in female vocals with the risk of being a tad shouty and sibilant in rare occasions. Lower midrange is warmer on the Gumiho with more weight but the PR2 somehow manage to have more natural male vocals.
Highs have better extension on the PR2 that also happen to have a slightly less aggressive lower treble. The upper treble, instead, is more polite on the Gumiho, even though this leads to a less open sound on the latter.
Technical performance is better on the PR2 with better staging and a slightly more precise imaging.
Build quality is good on both, while Gumiho’s stock cable is better. Comfort is better wearing the PR2 as the Gumiho are trickier to fit properly in the ear due to their unique shell, whereas isolation is on par (although I was expecting PR2 to be inferior to the Gumiho due to their semi-open back design).

Final Thoughts​

The KZ x HBB PR2 were a pleasant surprise: not only the tuning is a big step forward considering KZ’s lineup, but also the overall technical ability is great for how much the company charges for these. For sure they are not perfect, as a lot of power is needed to drive them, the bass could use a bit more punch and rumble and the highs occasionally become splashy if underpowered, but the truth is that it’s super hard to complain about the overall performance of this set.

Those who search for an ultra-budget planar magnetic drivers are very lucky nowadays, and hopefully this trend will lead to more competition in the market as it would mean better and better prices for the final user.
Good job KZ, glad to see you back on the right track!
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New Head-Fier
KZ x HBB PR2 - The Planar Revolution Continues
Pros: Improved sound from KZ
Mild V-shaped signature
Clean, decent mids
Forgivable and inoffensive treble
Decent technicalities for the price
Cheapest planar driver so far
Robust build
Cons: The bass doesn't have that much dynamics
The QDC connection will always be a con for me
Barebone packaging for a "premium" offering from KZ
Not the most technical planars around
As planars should, it requires more driving power to unleash its potential

KZ has recently introduced their latest in-ear monitor featuring planar drivers, the PR2. This model boasts an impressive 13.2mm planar driver configuration. As the successor to the PR1, which unfortunately I didn't get a chance to try, I am grateful that KZ has provided me with the opportunity to experience the PR2.


  • I have no affiliation with KZ and have not received any monetary compensation during or after writing this review. KZ provided this unit to me in exchange for an honest and unbiased review.
  • As a non-professional reviewer, I aim to use simple terms that can be understood by both beginners and experts in the hobby.
  • Please keep in mind that the opinions expressed in this review are subjective and based on my personal experience with the unit. I encourage you to try the product yourself to form your own opinion.


While the inclusion of barebone accessories doesn't bother me in KZ's budget segment, I feel that for models like the PR2, it would have been a notable improvement to have a case and a better cable included. It's not surprising to see that the inclusion of accessories remains the same, regardless of whether it's a budget KZ IEM or a "flagship" model. However, I acknowledge that this is solely my personal opinion, and I hope that KZ considers such feedback moving forward.

What's inside the box?
  • KZ x HBB in-ear monitors
  • Cable
  • 3 pair of starline silicone eartips
  • 1 pair of memory foam tips
  • Paperworks

I must praise KZ for their continuous commitment to improving the build quality of their in-ear monitors. The planar driver in the PR2 is housed in sturdy resin shells, reinforced with a metal faceplate. I personally would prefer if KZ started utilizing recessed 2-pins instead of the QDC type pins, particularly for their higher-priced models. Nevertheless, the overall build quality of the PR2 remains commendable.

KZ with starline eartips


The PR2, despite having planar drivers is not cursed/blessed with the so called "planar sheen". The PR2 showcases KZ's signature warm V-shaped sound signature, which has been a defining characteristic of their brand since its inception. Over time, they have continuously refined and improved upon this sound signature, making it even more enjoyable.

The bass response of the PR2 offers a moderately thick presentation, although it may not have the same level of impact as some of KZ's previous models like the ZAS. This distinction can be attributed to the PR2's use of a planar driver instead of a dynamic driver, which leads to a bass that is less dense and impactful compared to a dual-driver setup. The focus of the bass is primarily on the sub-bass frequencies, while the midbass has a lesser impact and thump in the lower frequency range. However, despite this difference, the PR2 still performs admirably in the lower region and can satisfy the preferences of some bass heads.

The midrange presentation of the PR2 strikes a subtle balance between clarity and engagement, with a slight recessed quality. While the vocals may not possess the same level of euphonic richness and thickness typically found in warmer planar sets, they still deliver decent and clean vocals. Instruments, although not prominently pronounced, maintain clarity and exhibit good separation within the mix. Overall, the midrange of the PR2 delivers a smooth and acceptable musical performance, providing an enjoyable listening experience.

One notable surprise with the PR2 is its departure from the typical treble performance found in other KZ in-ear monitors. In the past, certain models from KZ were often criticized for having harsh and shrill treble. However, this issue is not present in the PR2. The treble is not excessively airy, but it still provides a commendable level of clarity expected from a planar IEM. While the PR2 offers a subtle touch of sparkle to certain tracks, it doesn't deliver an exceptionally vibrant brilliance. Nonetheless, the treble is commendable for its absence of harshness, shoutiness, and sibilance, which is definitely a positive aspect of its performance.

While the soundstage of the PR2 is not particularly expansive, it offers a decent sense of space considering its price range. The soundstage doesn't sound lacking or compressed, allowing the music to breathe and avoid feeling congested. In terms of imaging, the PR2 performs admirably, providing a clear sense of placement for instruments and vocals as they progress across the left and right channels. The separation between individual elements within the music is also commendable, even in busier tracks where multiple instruments and layers are present. Furthermore, the PR2 exhibits the ability to capture fairly subtle micro details, adding an additional layer of depth and nuance to my listening experience. The PR2 might demand more power to unleash its full potential. Then again, this is a $40 planar in-ear monitor but it fares decently on its own.


I don't have anything to compare against the KZ PR2 within its price range because I haven't been exposed that much to its potential competitor the Celest Gumiho which also houses a square-planar driver. I also can't compare it to its older brother the PR1 since I haven't tried it at all. However, I can try to compare it with much expensive planar sets I tried. It's important to note that these comparisons highlight the distinct strengths of each IEM, rather than determining which one is superior overall.

1. MUSE HiFi Power - Ahh yes, I forgot I reviewed the HiFi Power before but if you want to experience the worst "planar sheen" in a planar driver IEM. You might want to torture your ears with the MUSE Hifi Power. Too harsh? It's mutual then. Joke, while the MUSE Hifi Power is decent in term of details and some technicalities, I find the MUSE Hifi Power to be very aggressive and spicy in the treble region. It also has the tendency to be sibilant and shouty in which the PR2 is absent with those nuances. Besides, the MUSE Hifi Power is too bulky, top it off with the uncomfortable sound.

2. TANGZU Zetian Wu - When comparing the PR2 and the Zetian Wu, both IEMs exhibit a departure from the typical "planar sheen." However, the Zetian Wu leans towards a more euphonic sound signature, offering a weightier lower region compared to the PR2. On the other hand, the PR2 excels in terms of soundstage, providing a wider and more spacious presentation compared to the Zetian Wu. While the Zetian Wu boasts a thicker and more lush tonality, the PR2 delivers a more open and detailed sound reproduction.

3. LETSHUOER S12 - Similarly, I can provide a comparison between the Zetian Wu, PR2, and the S12. The S12 stands out for its superior warmth and lushness, surpassing both the Zetian Wu and the PR2 in this regard. On the other hand, the PR2 offers more aggressive treble and decent imaging capabilities. However, when it comes to the engaging quality of the lower registers, the S12 outshines both the Zetian Wu and the PR2. It delivers a captivating and immersive experience in the lower frequencies. Additionally, the PR2 reveals more sparkle in the treble region, adding a sense of clarity and detail compared to the S12.

  • Improved sound from KZ
  • Mild V-shaped signature
  • Clean, decent mids
  • Forgivable and inoffensive treble
  • Decent technicalities for the price
  • Cheapest planar driver so far
  • Robust build

  • The bass doesn't have that much dynamics
  • The QDC connection will always be a con for me
  • Barebone packaging for a "premium" offering from KZ
  • Not the most technical planars around
  • As planars should, it requires more driving power to unleash its potential

In conclusion, the PR2 truly shines as one of the top budget planar IEMs, making it an excellent choice for those with budget constraints. It represents KZ's latest and improved offering, presenting a fresh take on their well-known dynamic-driver V-shaped sound signature. With the PR2, you not only get the familiar KZ quality but also a more refined and matured package that showcases the brand's continuous growth and development.


500+ Head-Fier
Pros: -Price
-Superb build quality
-Stylish looks
-Nice timbre
- Dynamic punchy low end
-Good midrange performance
- Treble no fatiguing peaks
-Good all day listen
-Price to performance
Cons: -Needs lots of power (Tin-hifi P1 territory)
-no case
-Cable is not great really needs balanced to perform at its best
-Nothing at this price. Incredible price to performance

I'm not a professional reviewer, just an enthusiastic amateur who KZ contacted over FB and asked if I would like to try out some of their iems. I didn't really know anything about the company, other than what I'd read and watched on YouTube which was less than complimentary. Well the KZ redemption arc starts here with this market changing (spoiler alert) Planar. What's the difference between this and the current crop of Planars 7hz Timeless, Dunu Talos, Letshouer S12 etc.
the answer... A cable and a carry case and for just $40.

Disclaimer I'm not a technical reviewer I don't read graphs, I just stick them in my ears and listen

This is a review sample sent to me for my honest opinion by KZ they have not given me any instructions on what to say and will not be getting prior approval so they are reading this with you.

Now I've not listened to any KZ iems before as I normally steer clear of the budget level. I have however owned HBB collaborations so had a preconceived of the sound signature.

The box the PR2 comes in is tiny, containing the iems, cable and some tips. The iems are attractive, well built shells with clear plastic allowing full view of the large full frequency 13.2 Planar Magnetic Driver with a double sided (7+7) array of N52 magnets.

I have rather large ears so rarely use included eartips so I attached the spinfit cp100 from my collection. the PR2 needs power and I mean lots of power.

I listened to the the PR2 for 2 weeks using a 4.4mm balanced copper cable with a variety of my sources: Dongles such as the ifi go blu, Cayin RU6 ad Hiby FC4 kind of manage to drive them but don't unleash their full potential for that I needed to dig out my most powerful DAPs, the Cayin N3pro and Hiby R8.



The Hiby R8 with its Turbo mode at high gain helped the PR2 climb to the level and in some cases surpass the much more expensive planars on the market. The special sauce is in the tuning which is just astonishing at this price point, HBB guided the process so we have sweet fast bass, extension is good into the lows and the bass replays very well with most genres, Classic Rock, Funk, EDM, Pop etc. Not exactly Dynamic Driver bass, but very good planar bass that comes close to my favourite DD bass.

Male vocals are forward not recessed and have good energy. Timbre is natural,. Male voices have plenty of presence and a good sense of tone and timbre for a planar. Female vocals are equally well presented with a smooth none harsh delivery.

For a planar the treble is safe just enough to feel airy with no harsh peaks never coming across as hot just servicing the music.

Music listen to:
Alannah Myles - Black velvet
Dire Straights - Private Investigations
Hall and Oats - She's gone
Lorde - Royals
Muse - Supremacy
The White Buffalo - The woods
T Rex - 20th Century boy
Brothers Osbourne - Slow your roll
Lady Blackbird - Black acid soul
Marc Cohn and the
Blind Boys of Alabama - Baby King
Cat Stevens - Hard headed woman
Iron Maiden - run to the hills
Chic - Good times
Clutch - Book of bad decisions
Coolio - Gangsta's paradise
2Pac - Ambition is a ridah
Peter Gabriel - In your eyes (New blood Orchestral version)
YES - Roundabout

If you are looking for a slightly warm U shaped planar with good technicalities and decent sound stage and don't mind cable swapping the KZ x Hbb PR2 is a superb option, nothing comes close in the price bracket and the $100 to $200 planars should be worried especially the 7hz timeless which started this revolution but now looks over priced in comparison.
Last edited:
Still waiting for mine to arrive. I like your selection of test tracks! :L3000:


500+ Head-Fier
KZ X-HBB PR2 Review
Pros: -Price
-Nice build
-Fresh look
-Nice timbre for a planar
-Tidy and punchy low end
-Midrange has good presence
-Snappy treble
-Non-Offensive tuning
-Price to performance
Cons: -Hard to properly drive (needs amping)
-Needs burn-in (just trust me)
-Cable is the same Ole KZ cable
-Nothing more at this price and for all that you get tuning wise
KZ X-HBB PR2 Review




Today I am reviewing the KZ X-HBB PR2. KZ has been on a tear lately and the KZ X-HBB PR2 is one of the reasons why there has been such a spotlight on the company. Certainly, it doesn’t hurt to run a collaboration with the well-known “Hawaiian Bad Boy” from “Bad Guy Good Audio Reviews” of YouTube renown. Another thing which helps the cause of this budget earphone giant is that they are offering the KZ X-HBB PR2 for a crazy low price of only $40. By the way, this set is a true Planar iem. Many of you already know how unheard of this is for a truly planar iem to be sold at such prices, but as the tech becomes more widely produced and manageable, I suppose the prices have dropped accordingly. It is a great time to be a fan of audio my friends.


I have always been a fan of HBB’s style, his delivery, that forthright and honest authority which he seems to speak with. Naturally I gravitated to his iems. Have they all been amazing? No, not all of them (I’ve never heard any of his more expensive sets), but by and large his iems have been very well tuned to his preference and coincidentally they are tuned nicely to my preference as well. For the most part anyways.

One thing is for sure, HBB seems to only put his name on something which he can sit back and be proud of. When you mix experience, passion and genuine pride in the end product I think you will most of the time end up with a good result. To me this is evident in HBB’s collab thus far. Always built well, always stylish, always tuned better than the OG of whatever iem he is tuning. with the PR2 there is high expectations and I believe those expectations have been met and exceeded with this set.

On a tear lately

I mentioned the absolute tear that KZ has been on in the last year or so and certainly within the last few months creating truly top level iems at their respective price points. I have reviewed some myself and even have some which are waiting in the wings to be published. Sets like the KZ ZVX and the KZ D-Fi are two iems that truly play within the top of their price segments. So, how does the PR2 fare against other KZ Planar iems of recent times or even other Planar iems from other manufacturers for that matter? Why don’t we take a look. Thank you for visiting my full review of the KZ X-HBB PR2.


Gear Used
Left to Right: Ifi Go Blu / Shanling M6 Ultra / iBasso DX240 / Moondrop Dawn 4.4

Gear used for testing

Ifi Go Blu
Moondrop Dawn 4.4
iBasso DX240 with Amp8 MK2
Shanling M6 Ultra



Not much to say here. Most of the time this is my first sentence in the “packaging” area of my review of a KZ/CCA set. KZ doesn’t typically offer much, but I am more than fine with that because they put so much into the earphones themselves. The box is the same size and shape as the cardboard sleeve box. A picture of the PR2 adorns the front cover while there are some stats on the back. Take off the sleeve and you’ll notice the masculine looking PR2 sitting in a plastic holder. Under the earphones is a cardboard cover which houses the eartips and the cable. That’s about it my friends.

KZ PR2 Packaging
KZ PR2 Packaging
KZ PR2 Packaging


KZ PR2 Eartips

KZ included one pair of medium sized foam tips of decent quality as well as three pairs (S, M, L) of some of my all-time favorite tips, the KZ Starlines. This may not seem like much, but I believe the Starlines are some of the best tips (when you need them). They seal phenomenally and are very rigid. Also, you can invert them to a horn style using a screw and some elbow grease. Coincidentally the audio community refers to these as “Reversed KZ Starlines”. I actually stuck with the Starlines for this review.


KZ PR2 Cable

The cable is a downer. I really was hoping to get something else with this collaboration but in truth… I would’ve swapped it out anyways, I always do. The cable provided is the same QDC style, OFC cable with the white rubber casing and right angle 3.5 se connector. I do believe that a balanced cable for balanced sources is likely the way most people will listen, being the power requirements are greater than your average set of earphones. I actually swapped the cable for an 8 core Fedai QDC, 2-Pin, SPC balanced cable. No there isn’t anything wrong with the included cable providing you have a good and strong source to power the PR2.

KZ XHBB PR2 Pics (56).jpg

Build / Design / Internals / Fit / Drivability


The build quality seems to fall in perfect harmony with some of KZ’s earlier Planar releases like the KZ PR1 Hifi (review here) and KZ PR1 Pro. KZ switched up the faceplate a bit, but the quality remains. KZ decided to go with two colorways using a gunmetal or silver colored faceplate as well as a black color. Obviously, mine is the silver color. What we have is a solid build, no doubt about it. The PR2 carries the identical shape of most KZ iems and certainly all of their planar sets are almost identical in footprint.

The faceplate cover is die-cast using a metal alloy and perfectly fitted on the shell. Underneath that is a faux semi-open back mesh which gives the appearance of a semi-open design. Please note that this is most certainly not semi-open back. The body of the shell is made using a clear resin which combined with the alloy makes for a lightweight iem which is good enough for long listening sessions. Also, the PR2 is sold with or without a mic. I personally enjoy the mic-less version and have no way of knowing how well the mic actually works for phone calls and such. I believe the mic has working controls too which is nice. Honestly, there isn’t really anything special about the build except that it is done for the low cost of $40. It is solid, has a good feel to it and seems durable.

KZ PR2 Build
KZ PR2 Build
KZ PR2 Build


The design is very much reminiscent of other recent KZ Planar iems. I do like the open style look of this set with the mesh underneath. There is a certain confident swag that the PR2 imposes. Definitely masculine in appearance and looks pretty sweet in the ear. At the very least it is something to talk about with non-audio people out there. I wouldn’t call the look anything crazy unique but it’s a nice style. Something KZ has been doing very well of late.


There is so much hoopla which has surfaced within the past year about what is a real or semi-real planar. One thing that KZ can hang their hat on is the fact that their planar iems are in fact… Planar iems. They equipped the large full frequency 13.2 Planar Magnetic Driver with a double sided (7+7) array of N52 magnets. That is fourteen N52 Rubidium magnets in total. The Diaphragm itself is actually silver plated which is said to increase transient response as well as resolution and balance between the frequencies, among other notable attributes.


Have you tried any other KZ planar iem? If so, then you know how the PR2 will fit. For me it fits pretty good, nothing to note either way. I fiddle for half a second and I’m in business. I never have fallouts and I never get an ache in my ear or anything like that. They are pretty comfortable and (at least for me) they seal very well and isolate very well. I heard no complaints from friends or family that there is any sound leakage and noise from the outside environment is attenuated pretty well.


Okay, now we get to the meat of this review. Phew… I try to hurry through everything else because let’s be honest, this is what you are here for. You need to know what it takes to drive this lil baddie appropriately. Fear not my friends, I have done the legwork and painstakingly come up with an answer to all your queries. Okay painstaking may be a stretch. However, I did find out that the PR2 does need some good amping and it will take whatever you throw at it.

The PR2 is rated at 15+3 ohms and a low sensitivity of 94 db’s and so it isn’t some walk in the park to power this set of earphones. Using a mobile solution such as the Fiio UTWS5 was instantly thrown out the window. 50 mw@32 ohms is simply not enough.

Moving up to the IFi Go Blu was an instant upgrade on balanced and just enough to push the PR2 decently. In fact it is a pretty nice pairing if you happen to own the Go Blu. The CS43131 dac chip and warmer yet dynamic tonality worked well with the PR2 yet still the PR2 has not reached its best fidelity in my opinion. Even at 245 mw @32 ohms on balanced. Moving onto the Moondrop Dawn 4.4 which also has the CS43131 dac chip, I found it even easier to push the PR2 and there is pretty good synergy with the Dawn. However, they still have more to squeeze out of them (PR2).

More juice & synergy

The last stage of the power game for me ends at my daps. The iBasso DX240 as well as the Shanling M6 Ultra. Both daps push close to 1 watt of output. I used both on high gain and with those power numbers the PR2 is finally brought to a very lively and dynamic sound. It is with these two daps that I finally heard just how good this set of $40 earphones can be. By the way, I also found out that the PR2 isn’t very picky about source and synergizes well with all that I used them with.

The DX240 has a beast of a dac chip, the ES9038 Pro along with the Amp8 MK2 module. Boy do these two sound engrossing together. Also, the M6 Ultra which uses the AK4493SEQ dac chip, another beast of a chip which in my opinion brings out the best in the PR2. All different kinds of chips and source impedance and the PR2 still sounds fantastic.

KZ XHBB PR2 Pics (68).jpg

Pint Sized Sound Impressions

Note: During the course of my testing, I used proper amping, high gain, balanced cable and about 100 hours of burn-in.

For a $40 Planar iem I was most certainly taken aback by its mature and balanced sound. Yes, the PR2 is a great sounding planar iem, no beating around the bush. Especially for an iem with this driver tech which hovers at such a low asking price. It’s obscene actually. However, the PR2 isn’t without hesitations. In fact, I could make a healthy argument that there are multiple better sets that you could get for the money depending on your source situation. There are good reasons and usage cases that make less sense to own the PR2. I will dig into that later, but I’d like to prelude the rest of this section with… This set sounds really nice and is basically a complete no brainer.


I’ll also re-preface that I did burn this set in for at least 100 hours. I most certainly heard changes in this set after the burn-in period and I would strongly advise that you keep from judging the PR2 until you have done so. Just take my advice, humor me please, burn-in or listen-in for at least 70 hours and if you have the patience give it some more.


The PR2 has a warmer tonality with just enough illumination up top to open up the sound and add some luster or some brightness. I hear a slight V-shape sound signature with nice energy when properly amped. The sound is reasonably airy and open with a nice sized stage.

The PR2 has a moderately thumpy bass with decent rumble which is actually very nice for a true planar magnetic. It’s a nice and quick planar bass. Extension is pretty good into the lowest of lows and the bass replays very well most any genre with a bass drop, bass guitar, kick drum etc. Not exactly DD bass, but a very good planar bass that comes close to that beloved DD bass.

The midrange is slightly forward, or better said, not really all too far recessed. Not the thickest male and female vocal, but precise, clean and vivid. Not so lush, but the vocals sound smooth enough and not too coarse.

The treble region is elevated yet not to a detriment. I hear a smoother style treble which still has a snap to it, or a punch. Extension is very well drawn out and I only hear very minimal “Planar” timbre.

If this is all you read, then just know that the tuning is very well done. HBB is quickly mastering this tuning thing and I can honestly say that I trust the dude completely anymore. If he can do with $40, what KZ couldn’t do with $80-100, then c’mon folks… dude has an ear for sound. Let’s break down each 3rd of the mix a little further…

Graph courtesy of HBB, Thank You

KZ X-HBB PR2 attached to the iBasso DX240

Bass Region

The sub-bass of the PR2 can be described as well emphasized with a snappy punch to it and adequately deep haptic vibrational buzz and good extension down low. So, what is adequate? Adequate to me, in this sense, is a bass that can sufficiently feel the rumble, with enough density to add some of the droning tactility to the bass region which so many genres require. The PR2 certainly has a planar type bass. To be honest, planar bass has never been ideal for me, but it can definitely be satisfying. What the PR2 does have is a tightly perceived transient attack and decay.

Close to DD?

In the track “Heavy is the Ocean” by Bush (newest album) this song comes right out the gate with some deep droning and grizzly guitar riff which absolutely sets the stage. The PR2 is not the deepest and trust me this track can get pretty deep with a thrumming type of growl. I do get some of the “feels” of the bass on this track. For a planar I think it sounds great. Truthfully it almost has the timbre of a DD yet seemingly less emphasized. The only real difference is in the tightness of the presentation as the PR2 does have a more concise, concentrated leading edge like most planar magnetic iems. I hope that makes sense. Planars typically (not always) don’t have the atmospheric type bass with the same depth as a dynamic driver but the PR2 gets you close and sounds very nice.


We aren’t left in wanting on the PR2 though the mid-bass is much less emphasized. There is still a modest slam which has been rationed for HBB’s tuning purposes. Less emphasis means more clarity and openness in the midrange, particularly the low-mids, most of the time. I love me some good and satisfyingly robust bass my friends. While the PR2 is not at all at basshead levels there is definitely a quality to the mid-bass which I derive from the nicely layered, textured and tight sound which comes across snappy and with good macro-details. Take the track “Lost Cause” by Billie Eilish. The PR2 exhibits an authoritative and pretty hard-edged rumble that is very clean. It sounds really nice and rewarding to my senses.

Don’t get it twisted

I don’t want to get things twisted. I think these reviews can confuse some people or easily lead people astray. Please note that I do think there is plenty of low-end boom for hip-hop, metal, edm etc. In fact, depending on the track the PR2 can actually sound nicely weighted and accentuated. I think that the PR2 will faithfully playback what you feed it but it simply is more mature and won’t muddy up the waters with a gradual decline into the midrange.

Thankfully the mid-bass still has enough emphasis for stuff like the fundamental body of a bass guitar. In “Feelin’ the Miles” by The Wilder Blue, I do hear some pleasing grunt in the bass guitar. What I like best is the detailed minutia that can be picked up in the process and the organic timbre in this region. There is a tactile type of surface structure to the sound which is nice for a planar iem and even nicer for $40. I am impressed.

KZ X-HBB PR2 attached to the iBasso DX240



Male vocals come across more forward than they are recessed and have good energy. Note definition is well enough rendered as well. Timbre isn’t exactly spot on, but it also isn’t altogether unnatural either. Males from bass, to baritone, to tenors all have plenty of presence and a pretty good sense of musicality for the tuning style.

In “Cover Me Up” by Morgan Wallen, his raspy southern drawl is well recreated to my ears. A song I’ve heard a trillion times (a slight exaggeration) replays pretty nicely on the PR2. Perhaps his voice is a bit lean, if anything, but it is also very well carved out and partitioned off to have a good dynamic presence. There is an openness or airiness that is nice. Again, the only things I’d say which are drawbacks would be the timbre is a hint lean and does have a slight planar tinge to it.

Sense of clean space

The song “Salt Water” by Ed Sheeran is very well done on the PR2. There is a sense of clean space with his vocals sitting a touch forward (recording), yet also slightly dialed back as far as dynamics goes. This is not a con by the way. His voice is kept in check. In the more spirited points in this track Ed’s intonations of his voice can come across a bit sharp at the edges with worser tuned iems. Edgy if you will. The PR2 slightly smooths those over while the rest of the track has nice macro-dynamics. I find the PR2’s lower midrange to be nicely rhythmical & melodious as a whole on this song. Maybe a hair thin. I say that, yet he still comes across with good texture and substantive vitality.


Females like Sierra Ferrell in “Whispering Waltz” have a certain controlled and soft sheen to them. It’s nice. There is a levity in her voice. Not the most organic or earthy but very effective at showing the emotion of the track. I promise that not every iem can do this regardless of the price tag. In the same breath there are some which do it better. I certainly wouldn’t say the PR2 specializes in female vocals, but I can surely add them to the list of the benefits of this iem. Also, for a true planar, I find her voice and the instrumentation to be very musical. Which, by the way, is a huge compliment to the makers of the PR2.

The Ukulele in this track has great detail along with a nicely bodied sound. It sounds distinct and separated. Also, the acoustic guitar plucks ping then followed closely by natural sounding harmonics. There is a tactile energy to strings which I enjoy. The violin is almost haunting, melodic and buoyant with very nice verve, or spirit. They have a velvet-like tactile sound with nice depth encircling the instrument. This set is $40 friends… Just thought I’d remind you all, in case you forgot.

All things considered

The midrange is really nice in the PR2. Altogether there is good control in the whole of the midrange. I hear more smoothness than I do coarseness and no unevenness at all. It is a nicely articulated and cohesive sounding midrange. Perhaps dialed back a bit but still very musical. The midrange benefits from not having the veil or muddiness of the bass region but it also benefits from the rise in the treble and doing so without sounding harsh at all. I hear no sibilance or graininess, I hear no shout or odd moments of weird planar artifacts…It’s simply nice.

Now, of course, if you want to spend more you can get better, but I’d have a hard time telling anyone they can find better at this price. There are a handful of sets within its price point which can play ball with the PR2… but they are few and far in between and none of those sets are planar magnetic iems.


Treble Region

I find the treble region to have good extension yet not even close to the shrillness that we have seen in past KZ planar iems. This is a true upgrade in my book. Some of KZ’s other planars have had a large rise through the treble region and while I thought it was tolerable (with mods or EQ) I did think that they needed a reduction up top. It appears and sounds as though HBB may have corrected this on the PR2. Mostly the crazy intensity of the treble has been cut back on this set which is very welcome. What you are left with is a nicely smooth treble region that doesn’t engage my ears with anything shrieking, invasive or harsh. The secondary harmonics of cymbal strikes are actually not splashy and truthfully the treble as a whole has a nice timbre. Extension is great.

Listening to one of my go to tracks for treble activity is “Bishop School” by Yusef Lateef. It isn’t my favorite song in the world (by any stretch of the imagination) but it is great for rapid fire treble activity. This is a crazy style New Age Jazz track with instruments such as flute, bass, congas, drums, electric bass, electric guitar, percussion, piano, trumpet and strings etc. The best compliment I can give the PR2 is that it keeps up with this song and does so in a clean and pretty precise fashion. Separation and imaging in this track are very well displayed with a snappiness to every leading edge and a decent treble punch. Details arise quite easily as the treble is resolute, separated and balanced with the rest of the frequency while never too smooth to gloss over tiny micro details.


I don’t think I’d go so far as to say the PR2 is for treble Heads, but the treble has good energy which uplifts and adds a luster to the whole of the mix without bringing upon anything too offensive, to my ears and with my library anyways. In fact, I would certainly say that the treble is mostly “safe” compared to earlier KZ releases. Again, mostly a smooth affair without anything grainy, shrill, or shouty and without sibilance to distract my listening ears with my library. In all I’d say that HBB and KZ did a fantastic job creating an earphone which will entertain the vast majority of hobbyists.

The only treble complaints that I could see would come from very treble sensitive folks, or folks who enjoy a much lusher and warmer experience with toned down treble. Listening on the PR2 at higher volumes to tracks which seem to induce a peakier sound; there is a chance for a bit of harshness, but in my opinion, those are rarer than they aren’t.

KZ PR2 attached to the Shanling M6 Ultra using a Fedai 8 core SPC balanced cable



The stage size of the PR2 is one that I would call above average. I perceive the PR2 to have a nice width to the sound which can be easily heard in “Hook” by Blues Traveler. Macro-dynamics are in pretty good abundance and the sound stretches past my ears with this track. Not stadium sized, but also if that is something you are expecting out of an “in-ear-earphone” then you may want to look on Mars for that, because planet Earth doesn’t have it.

Height is about average, and I hear a good, layered depth for the price and driver tech. I am used to hearing planar iems with almost a “flat wall of sound” which normally doesn’t have the greatest depth, but the PR2 seems to buck the trend. The stage size, dimensions and realism is nice for the price, which coincidentally means it’s good for any price. Good is good.

Separation / Imaging

Like I stated earlier, separation is actually very well accomplished on the PR2. In each 3rd of the mix and everywhere between the 20’s I don’t really hear any masking or muddiness. Even on more chaotic songs the PR2 seems to delineate between instruments and voices nicely. I don’t think any of you will find fault with how well the separation is on this set. Imaging is the exact same story and walks hand-in-hand with how well the PR2 is able to partition off elements of a stage. You will hear decent depth and layering from front to back. Not mind-blowing, but for $40 you’d be hard pressed to find any iems which blow this one out of the water. Left to right everything has its place with vocals taking center stage most of the time and depending on the track of course.


Another thing I’ve already commented on briefly is the ability of the PR2 to bring the tiny minutiae of a song into the forefront of the imaginary stage. The PR2 has a nicely balanced sound, quick planar drivers and comes across resolute and focused, with “perceivably” tight transients, which is a good recipe for details. Whether it be the breath of an emotional singer, or well discerned and controlled harmonics, finger slides, or even the random commotion in your favorite live track, the PR2 can and will draw those things out.

I wouldn’t call the PR2 a “Detail King” but just by virtue of the driver type and tuning alone; I’d say it is up there with the best at the price point, no doubt about it. I’d also say that if you enjoy a nicely detailed sound yet also enjoy a good dynamic and fun signature then say less and look no further… The PR2 may just be what you are looking for.

KZ PR2 comparisons
Left to Right: Tangzu Zetian Wu / Celeste Pandamon / KZ HBB PR2 / KZ PR1 Hifi


**Note: Each comparison here is not a duel to the death. I don’t find that very helpful in subjective comparisons. I compare attributes between sets, simply to better acquaint the reader with how the iem I am reviewing sounds. However, during the process I do think you will gather which set is better for the price or style for you, at least that is what I’m trying to do. Each comparison is mostly done with iems that have similar driver types or are priced similarly. There has to be some relatable quality to qualify a reasonable comparison. I try to keep these comparisons pretty short and somewhat concise and so I use very general terms, nothing in-depth either and always my subjective thoughts over fairly long a/b sessions.**

KZ PR1 Hifi ($45-60)

KZ PR1 Hifi

The KZ PR1 Hifi is the first set I thought of to compare with the PR2. It too has a full range Planar Magnetic Driver and shares much the same shape and design style as the PR2. The Hifi was KZ’s answer to the much maligned earlier Planar iem the CCA PLA13. I reviewed the PR1 Hifi last year (KZ PR1 Hifi Review) and gave it pretty good marks (average) as it held its own in the budget iem world. However, it does have its faults. Still, at the time it was a good starter iem for anyone wanting to experience a “true planar” iem at the fraction of what most Planar iems were going for.

Bass region

Between the two the PR1 has more of a bass emphasis. It hits harder and has a greater rise in the mid-bass area which adds a warmer hue to the whole of the mix. The PR1 comes across more V-shaped, but also it sounds a bit more congested and much more bloated and intrusive. The PR2 is much cleaner down low with just as good, if not better extension into the lowest of the lows. I would say the PR1 has better density in its bass but the PR2 has a more precise, textured, and layered sound, with better punch while highlighting macro-details much better. The PR2 has fantastic bass quality compared to the Hifi which has an otherwise immature forceful rise down low. It isn’t horrible but it certainly doesn’t compare to the lesser priced and newer PR2.


The PR1 is a lot warmer due to the overdrawn mid-bass push and spill-over into the midrange which (in my opinion) adversely affects male vocals and does add a slight veil over the region. The PR2 on the other hand drops that mid-bass down and adds emphasis to the sub-bass. This effectively frees up male vocals to sound much more neutral sounding, airy, detailed and clean in comparison. Females on the PR2 have more of a shimmer, or controlled sheen, and a musical nature with greater resolution. Really it seems that in all aspects the PR2 is an upgrade from the PR1 Hifi and the midrange perfectly shows this. Timbre is also much better as that was one area that I thought the PR1 needed some work. I don’t hear nearly as much of that metallic type of tinge to the note outlines on the PR2.

Treble Region

The treble is one area that I think KZ made the biggest difference. The treble of the PR1 Hifi was greatly emphasized. Extension into the air region was great, but there was a shrillness and shoutiness to my music which prompted me to modify the PR1 anyway that I could tame it. The PR2 is much better tuned as everything is brought back down to earth on this set. The PR1 gave a false sense of detail and perceived resolution with the forced rise up top, whereas the PR2 does so with a more natural timbre and lifelike replay while dialing back the treble.

Truthfully this one is a no brainer for me. Unless you adore a greatly boosted treble and would love a bit more slam in the bass. I think the PR2 is an upgrade across the board and was exactly what KZ needed to do to truly create a fantastic Planar iem at affordable prices.

Graph courtesy of HBB, Thank You

Celeste Pandamon ($59)

Celeste Pandamon

Okay now this may be a bit of a stretch to compare the two. First off, the Pandamon is not exactly a Planar iem. There was much debate on the topic upon its release, and the release of its predecessor… the Gumiho. I reviewed the Pandamon last year (Celeste Pandamon review) and admittedly adore the sound. Of course, it also costs a little bit more as well.

I would say the Pandamon is a hint more neutral, but both sets have a very mature sound and, in my mind, can go toe-to-toe with each other sound wise. Maybe not a perfect comparison but they do share similar tech as the PR2 is a true Planar Magnetic iem and the Pandamon is actually a “Square Planar” iem. Still a Planar but with subtle differences which I will not explain here. One noticeable difference is that the Pandamon is much easier to drive than the PR2.

Bass Region

What exactly are those differences? Let’s start in the bass region. As far as which set offers more of an impact and raw bass density, I would say that both of these are close, but the PR2 actually has more emphasis in this regard. The Pandamon does have a snappy and punchy low-end with a speedy driver as it matches the PR2’s ability to sound textured and layered down low, but if straight bass density and impact is what you are after, and it is between these two iems you are choosing from… I would imagine the PR2 would fit that bill a touch better. I think the PR2 has a tighter bass for things like bass drops and more grunt for bass guitar as well as better rounded and fuller sounding kick-drums.


Both sets offer a well-placed midrange, not too forward, not too recessed. The Pandamon and PR2 are both pretty melodic as well, but I would say the PR2 actually has the better macro-dynamics and fullness with a more detailed midrange while both come across as clean and kempt. Male vocals come across a hint thinner on the Pandamon but this is not really an issue as timbre is fantastic. Really, I see neither of these sets head and shoulders above one another.

I do think the PR2 has the more effervescent and livelier upper midrange for female vocals. The Pandamon sounds smoother to me throughout the mids with less chance for shout. However, it also sounds a hint more dialed back dynamically. I suppose there is a give and take with both iems. The PR2 is a little better defined but also can be more intense to a degree. All that said, I think both iems sound great to me. Perhaps the PR2 has a bit more of a dynamically expressive sound where the Pandamon is a little more laid back in comparison, but my brain can easily adjust and begin to adore both interpretations of my music.

Treble region

Most certainly the PR2 shines a bit more in this area as the extension is better up top as well as the detail retrieval. The PR2’s treble has a more vibrant punch to the smoother and safer Pandamon. This is really a question of preference between the two. Both sets offer a well composed treble region with a slightly different tuning. Neither sets sound shrill or sibilant and neither of these two offer a ton of shout or pierce up top. Though, of the two, the PR2 will not be good for the ultra-treble sensitive, especially at higher volumes on piercing type tracks. The Pandamon is definitely the safer choice there.

Again, this is a question of preference. To be honest I find the Pandamon to be one of the best iems under $75, and for good reason. It is tuned wonderfully with that close to neutral sound which is very clean and smooth. The PR2 hangs right there with it and even overtakes it in a few key categories. Do you want a dynamically controlled, expressive, vibrant and detail-oriented set? Or do you prefer something punchy, pretty precise, balanced, smooth and with great organic timbre? Both are absolutely fantastic options, and both are priced extremely well. The PR2 is certainly built much better and looks more mature whereas the look of the Pandamon is pretty polarizing, but both sets offer a unique and low-cost Hi-Fi experience.

Graph courtesy of HBB, Thank You

TangZu Zetian Wu ($149)

Tangzu Zetian Wu

The Wu Zetian or Zetian Wu, is one of those sets that quite literally changed the game to a slight degree. Now, at the time of its release the OG Raptgo Hook-X came out (Review HERE) and already kind of “owned” the top spot as far as planar iems goes, for a great majority of folks anyways. However, the Zetian came out and was lauded by hobbyists for its great timbre, balanced sound and overall dynamic and fun replay. BTW, I am not including the Hook-X in comparisons because it just doesn’t make sense. The Zetian is much closer in tonality and timbre and is a logical comparison. TangZu created a fantastic set in the Zetian Wu which is still a good buy at around $150. Still, I said this is a logical comparison and the PR2 costs $40 soooo…I’m not saying anymore, let’s compare the two shall we.

Bass Region

The first thing I notice in the bass region when comparing these two sets is the emphasis sounds more pronounced on the Zetian. Both in the sub-bass rumble and haptic feel to the mid-bass slam. The graph will tell you otherwise… Liar. Possibly the PR2 has a bit quicker attack but the Zetian seems to have a hint more sub-bass rumble, and possibly a bit more slam, but that’s it. Both sets are solid down low while the PR2 is a bit snappier, but both have that slightly softened leading edge with nice density. Both have a nicely textured bass as well. Neither are bass head iems but both can represent most genres perfectly fine. The Zetian offers greater rise in the low end, giving a warmer hue to the sound and comes across a little bit less like a planar timbre-wise and closer to a dynamic driver.


The Zetian comes across a bit thicker in note weight in the lower mid region and more forward when listening to male vocals. The PR2 is slightly less smooth in the lower mids but not to any detriment and in fact it adds some nice definition to the PR2. I hesitate to call the PR2 “cleaner” as I don’t think that’s the case but perhaps the slightly cooler sound makes it perceivably more resolute. Females follow much of the same trajectory as they are further back to a slight degree, less note body but more shimmer. Vocals and instrumentation sound lusher in general on the Zetian but the PR2 sounds slightly more detailed and more open and separated to my ears.

Dynamically the Zetian has more of a spirited and compelling sound. It’s more forward and simply more intense to a small degree. This certainly doesn’t mean the PR2 is not this way but the PR2 is more controlled throughout and simply offers a different take.

Treble Region

The PR2 has better extension up top and is possibly more vibrant but the Zetian has the more musical treble region. Once again, it’s smoother and easier to digest over long periods. The PR2 sounds a bit better balanced across the mix yet with a nice rise in the treble which perceivably draws out details a bit easier than when listening with the Zetian. The differences are not huge but there is a slight bit more luminance on the PR2.


Soundstage sounds a bit wider on the PR2, more spread out and deeper yet slightly less tall than the Zetian. Not exactly better. The Zetian is a more intimate listen yet also more musical than the PR2. It’s fuller, more present sounding, macro-dynamics of the Zetian are a touch more expressive too. Again, the Zetian has a more dynamic and fun sound while the PR2 sounds a bit more controlled altogether and slightly dryer. The PR2 is just as resolute while sounding tighter and with better controlled transients. Again, details rise to the surface easier on the PR2 while the Zetian is smoother, warmer, more bodied and with slightly more lifelike and a more emotional sounding timbre throughout.

It can hang

Folks, I am impressed by the PR2, flat out. The fact that it not only hangs with the Zetian, but even bests it in a few categories is saying a lot for a set which costs so much less. The only other differences to note is that the PR2 is harder to drive and naturally has far worse accessories like the cable and it lacks a carrying case. We should expect this though. However, what counts is in the music and the PR2 absolutely bodes very well against one of the better Planar iems under $200.

Graph courtesy of HBB, Thank You

**Note: There were a number of other planar iems that I was going to compare with the PR2 but simply ran out of gas fellas and ladies. The TRN Rosefinch came to mind but unforeseen circumstances destroyed any chance of that happening. Plus, it wasn’t going to be positive for the Rosefinch… at all. Proving that it’s definitely not easy to create and tune a ultra cheap true planar iem. I was going to compare the Letshuoer S12 Pro as well but I think the S12 Pro is simply a step up and not really a logical comparison, in some regards. Close, but at the same time quite a ways apart. I will gladly edit this review if any of the readers would like to read my thoughts about the two.


Is it worth the asking price?

I sound as though I’m on repeat reviewing these KZ iems of late. Friends, the KZ X-HBB PR2 is worth every penny. It’s pretty much irrefutable at this point. This is actually a silly question to even utter. What KZ and HBB managed to create and successfully put to market is a very low-priced planar iem that actually takes on other planar sets costing four times the amount. At the very least the PR2 has a seat at the table folks.

The PR2 is built very well, it’s comfortable enough (at least for me), and has a confident and sleek design. The PR2 is a detailed, technically proficient planar iem which is balanced across the mix and with good timbre for a planar… at any price. Transient attack/decay/sustain is snappy, prompt, measured and controlled which should be expected for a $150 planar iem, but for $40 it is a nice surprise. I don’t think I’ve mentioned enough about the timbre because this is one area that really turns me off to planar sets. There isn’t any of that metallic, electric sounding inflection and overtone that is a residual from the driver tech. I don’t get that in the PR2 as much as I have with sets that are more expensive, which is a testament to KZ and HBB’s ability and expertise.

It’s worth it!

So yes, the KZ X-HBB PR2 has quite easily managed to make it to the top of my personal “top five under $75” (for what it’s worth). Now, there are quite a few great sets in this price point and the PR2 has a lot of competition from different iems with different driver configurations. Despite that and considering all that the PR2 offers, I think it’s a shoo-in for most people’s “best-of” lists.

Yes, the PR2 is most certainly worth the $40 that KZ is asking for and I think it is the only iem that anyone should purchase if they are interested in purchasing a planar iem for the first time. Especially if you are tight on funds. Which happens to be most people in the world. In fact, I’d say with assurance and without question that all roads should go through the PR2 where first time planars owners are concerned. The only pause I would give anyone is if you don't have a decently powerful source to drive this set.


Ratings (0-10)

Note: all ratings are based upon my subjective judgment. These ratings are garnered against either similarly priced sets or with similar driver implementations or styles. In the case of the XHBB PR2 ratings below, that would be $30-$50 iems in any configuration. Please remember that “ratings” don’t tell the whole story. This leaves out nuance and a number of other qualities which make an iem what it is. A “5” is exactly average and please take into consideration the “lot” of iems these ratings are gathered against. $30-$50 US is a small pool in the grand scheme of things and so seeing ratings above a “9” is understandable.


-Build Quality: 8.9

-Design: 9.5

-Accessories: 8.0 (at this price I won’t calculate this score for this particular category)

Overall: 9.2

Sound Rating

-Timbre: 9.0

-Bass: 9.7

-Midrange: 9.2

-Treble: 9.2

-Technicalities: 9.8

-Overall: 9.3

KZ PR2 attached to the Ifi Go Blu using the Fedai 8 core SPC Cable


There you have it folks, that is my review of the KZ X-HBB PR2. Most certainly, I do hope this helps at least someone in a purchasing decision. I want to again thank KZ and Tyvan Lam for providing the PR2 for a full review. I must add that I hope every reader checks out other thoughts on the PR2 as it will only help get a better understanding about this set and about the reviewers as well. We all have different likes and dislikes, we can have varying music libraries and favored genres, I’m sure we don’t all have the same audio gear and sources, and we haven’t all been down the same audio journey. We are all different and so hearing other perspectives is very important. Thank you for reading, it means a lot everyone. Take care and stay safe.
KZ XHBB PR2 Pics (53).jpg


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I'd say the KZ D-Fi, KZ ZVX or maybe the QKZ X-HBB. Even the $12 KZ EDXS is a very well done set. Of the four I'd start with the ZVX or the D-Fi.
I'm also a long-time fan of the sound of the Blon BL-03, but I'd prefer to avoid bass-heavy sets. Which of the ZVX or D-Fi would you recommend? (Sorry we are going so far off-topic here.)
The comparison to PR1 Hifi was helpful. I thought they were okay but sort of unnatural in some ranges. Guess I'd give this similar model another shot for my biannual Chifi dose.


100+ Head-Fier
Mindblowing (2)
+Thumpy Planar Bass
+Hint Warm Mids
+Great for Long Listening
Cons: -No Included Case / Pouch
-Not So Precision On Cutting (nitpick)
Before I even begin this review, first off let me apologize for my weird English and grammatical mistakes.

The KZ x HBB PR2 is sent directly from KZ but this review is 100% my personal opinion.
Just in Case you're interested in the PR2, you can get it on Official KZ store below

Official Website Purchase:
AliExpress KZ Store:
Lazada PR2:

Lets start with the Unboxing Experience
Plain Old KZ Style Box
Sliding the Box
Welp, the KZ "Bihun" Cable
You also got KZ Starline SML eartips
Inside the Box you got :
  • IEM
  • Cable
  • Preinstalled KZ FOAM M, KZ Starline Eartips SML
  • User Guide - Warranty Card

Build Quality
The Build quality of the IEM is pretty solid just like the PR1 Pro, but one thing I noticed that KZ now adds acoustic dampers on the back vent of the IEM, and somehow on my unit that back acoustic dampers is not cut precisely, not a problem personally for myself but it might triggers someone who have OCD / perfectionists
besides the acoustic dampers not cut precisely, there is nothing I can personally fault for the build quality

for the Cable, sadly it got downgraded from the 8core SPC that PR1 Pro comes with to the entry level KZ "Bihun" Cable its functional but thats it, nothing special.
Probably the cable downgrade is for cost saving and pushing down the price point.

as for the Fitting
Fitting is pretty comfortable despites of the downgraded cable, I can get perfect seal with the KZ Starline size L eartips and stock cable.

is tested using Luxury Precision W2-131, KZ Starline Eartips, Stock Cable
Music is mostly from Apple Music Lossless
Genre : J-Pop, J-Rock, Anisong, EDM, RAP, Jazz

The overall tonality of the KZ x HBB PR2 is Harman neutral modified to HBB Preference, If I had to describe the overall sound as a words its probably "clean and grand".
As for the sounds, I will do a lot of comparison to the PR1 Pro.

BASS : While on the PR1 Pro presentation is more like Harman with extra mid-bass like KATO, etc, the PR2 is more focused on the Sub-bass, the Mid-bass transition to the midrange is very clean.
The bass quantity is not on the basshead level.
The speed of the bass is pretty fast like your typical planar, also punch like planar, and the decay of the bass is pretty short like planar. Well.. that's because the PR2 is a real planar unit.

Midrange : I Found that the PR2 midrange is tad leaner and more forward compared to the PR1 Pro.
Vocal and instrument on the upper midrange region is pretty forward but never too much, vocal is free from sibilance and shout, the lower part of the midrange is also free from masking effect of mid-bass bleed.

Treble : Smooth for a planar unit, even smoother than PR1 Pro, probably the effect from the acoustic damper that I talked earlier.
The treble extension is pretty good like PR1 Pro, but the treble intensity is reduced, its not that intense and forward like the PR1 Pro, so the overall treble tuning is more "safe" for a lot of people. If people usually ask me if the PR1 Pro is recommended / not, I always asked them back if they're treble sensitive or not, with the PR2, I can safely say that the treble is safe even for treble sensitive person.

Timbre : It has that planar timbre.. well.. because the PR2 is a planar unit..

Transient and Decay : the Attack / Transient is snappy and the overall decay is rather on the short side


Detail Retrieval : Pretty good especially for its price, there is a lot of details in the bass and treble region, though the midrange is not as detailed as its bass and treble, but its still decent, especially remembering the price is only $46 its still punching above its asking price.

: Grand, it has exact wall placement, and symmetrical in width and depth

Imaging : Very good, its almost holographic, but if compared directly to the PR1 Pro, somehow the PR1 Pro at least on my ears has slightly better imaging.

Separation & Positioning : Very good, no overlapping, no problem dissecting sound on very complex music, also very good for gaming, tested on Valorant, the direction of footsteps is very clear and sharp.


KZ PR1 Pro : I guess HBB take the PR1 Pro and he mods it, add acoustic damper and retune it a bit and boom KZ x HBB PR2 is born.
Tonality wise, PR1 Pro is more fun and intense, while PR2 is more toned down and relaxed, also overall sound at least on my ears the PR1 Pro has more body compared to the PR2, probably due to the mid-bass boost that PR1 Pro has.
The overall tonality of the PR2 is more safe for everyone even ones that are sensitive to treble.

As for the technicalities, they're pretty close, the PR1 Pro has better imaging, while the PR2 has better separation and positioning IMO.

If you're wondering is the PR2 is an upgrade from the PR1 Pro, the answer is NO, its more like a side grade / PR1 Pro that got retuned and with lower price point.
Though just in case you're wondering which one to buy, if you ask my personal opinion, the PR2 has better value compared to the PR1 Pro.

Salnotes Dioko : Dioko is noticeably harsher compared to the PR2, bass is tad boomier on the Dioko, midrange is lean on both IEM, as for the treble, Dioko has spiky, bright and harsher treble compared to both PR1 Pro and PR2.
As for the technicalities, Dioko has slight edge on detail retrieval probably due to the pushed treble creating fake sense of details while IMO the detail retrieval is pretty identical.


KZ x HBB PR2 got a very easy recommendation from me, especially for its price, even cheaper than PR1 Pro, it has more safe and relaxed sound signature that are easier to listen compared to the PR1 Pro.
Also its pretty good for people who are just starting to this hobby that wants to experience how planar sounds now can easily just purchase the PR2 and no need to spent more cash for a planar driver.
The PR2 is a very good introduction to planar sounds without spending a lot of cash.

If you're still wondering and contemplating should you buy the PR2 or not, let me help you.

the PR2 is recommended if :

  • You want a Planar IEM
  • You're on a budget
  • You want a Planar with very safe and relaxed tonality
  • You want good technicalities with minimal cost as possible
the PR2 is NOT so recommended if :
  • You want more WARM / BRIGHT IEM, because the PR2 is more on the Harman Neutral side
  • You're a BASSHEAD, the quantity might be not enough for you
  • You have OCD, the not so precise cutting might triggers your OCD
thanks for reading this far,
thats all from me for now, I might edit this later to fix my broken English

Just in case you're Indonesian or somehow understand Bahasa Indonesia, here is my review video of the PR2 in Bahasa Indonesia

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it reacts to EQ quite well actually, you can make it even to basshead level bass without distorting the driver :L3000:
Insider K
Insider K
I feel PR2 can benefit from a bit of mids tweaking.
Bisa pake android phone and stock dongle biasa to drive?
Can you drive it using normal smartphone and stock dongle? Or Apple type c dongle? Or normal Jcally dongle on lazada?


New Head-Fier
Pros: Fast and Clean Planar Bass, no distortion
Clean and Clear Mid Vocal, natural and organic
Treble details, imaging and micro details and instrument separation are adequate
Affordable price point to performance
Cons: Lack a bit of airiness and top end spaciousness [as compared]
Disclaimer: Thank you and kudos to KZ for arranging this review unit, all herewith are based on own observation with no affiliation nor obligation, noob observation - please enjoy.

Packaging / Presentation :

Packaging in KZ small white box. IEMs are ok built top plate metal alloy and body resin. Comes with 1 black foam tip, 3 pairs of starline silicon tips in S M and L. Cable is the white flat cable.

Equipment used / Music choices :

ASUS Laptop WIN 11 with Spotify Connect to

  • ifi UNO DAC to FSA Beyond HD Amplifier 6.35SE and Supplier HD Linear Supply
  • Topping DX3PRO DAC to Topping Amplifier L30 6.35SE
  • ifi Zen Dac v2.0 interconnected to ifi Zen Can 3.5SE/4.4BAL
Sony walkman A55 with Fiio A5 Portable Amplifier 3.5SE
LG G7+ 3.5mm SE with Shangling UP5 2.5bal/3.5SE/4.4bal BT via LDAC

Music Tracks - variety of EDM, pop, rock, jazz, country, instrumental, classical, audiophile male/female, chinese / cantonese favourites.

Some of tracks used -

Shatter Me – Lindsey Stirling
4x4=12 – Deadmau5
Need you tonight - INXS,
Jack and Diane - John Mellencamp,
I'm Good - David Guetta and Bebe Rexha,
Dancing in the Dark – Eddie Berman,
Snow Throwing – Lose Again,
IntroOooOoo – Kidkanevil, Daisuke Tanabe,
Brydshot and Bye - Dimlite,
Mushroom Picker Dance - Floex,
Bubbles – Yosi Horikawa,
Ageispolis – Aphex Twin,
Original remastered – Leftfield,
Virtual Reality and Acoustic Guitar Guy – Instrumental only, etc..

Sound Impression :

Fast Clean Planar with Warm Sounding Signature

Overall Tonality and Timbre
– Sound Signature is warm with adequate Weight Tone and Clarity. Overall is Well Balanced tuned set, organic and natural, clean and clear.

Bass – Planar Bass transient speed is fast and snappy and clean, on the leaner side, well controlled and accurate, kick drum and strikes are precise. No distortion but Not Basshead level though.

Mids – Male and Female vocals are organic natural sounding, pretty forward sounding with adequate weight tone and clarity. Just a little veil as compared though.

Treble - Instruments separation and imaging are clear and concise, accurate and precise, cymbals and high hats are good, have adequate micro details, have the decent planar characteristics.

Soundstage is not the widest in width, depth and height. Not 3D holographic or spacious enough as compared.

All testing are done using the stock tips and cable.

KZ x HBB PR2 [USD39.00 currently]

Comparison to

KZ PR1 PRO [USD69.00 currently]

PR1 PRO comes with a better braided stock cable. On critical listening and A/B, PR1 PRO sounds brighter and have more air on the top end thus present itself with more 3D spaciousness, just slightly.

LetShuoer S12 PRO [USD135.00 currently]

S12 PRO comes with full metal alloy built IEM and modular plug system 2.5BAL, 3.5SE and 4.4BAL cable. S12 PRO have the brightest thus exhibit better clarity on comparison of the 3 sets.

Final Thoughts

All 3 sets have exhibited the good characteristics of a capable planar magnetic IEM, in terms of bass, all can deliver the fast and clean planar bass without distortion. In terms of mid vocal, all 3 sets can deliver clean and clear vocals, male and female, S12 PRO being my most preferred as I generally like mid-centric set more out of the 3 spectrum in an IEM. Lastly, treble wise, all 3 sets have performed adequate enough for a planar, S12 PRO still my more preferred, then PR1 PRO and PR2.

KZ x HBB PR2 is the most affordable planar magnetic in the market currently, the sound performance justify for its price definitely.


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Thank you. Usually I match bright iems with warmer source and tips if need to tone down, like warm but not too dark
Thanks for the frequency response measurements. Is it possible to see the distortion measurements as well? 🤔
Currently I only can do from hearing audible if driver distort, saw master generate graph before, it is kind of difficult to read and decipher it. Need to go for further training. Apologies 😔