MEElectronics A151P 2nd Generation

Rating:
4.25/5,
  1. Bananam4n
    Fantastic For the Price
    Written by Bananam4n
    Published Dec 24, 2015
    4.0/5,
    Pros - -Neutral Sound -Decent Soundstage -Fantastic Highs -Slightly warm Sound signature -Very Efficient -Great noise isolation
    Cons - -Some may not like the Analytical Sound -Lacks any bass impact/very light bass
    These are my go to portable IEM's/Headphones, They have the classic neutral slightly warm balanced armature sound.
    I will start with what i like.
     
    -Highs -The high end on these is quite amazing for the price, they are very accurate! the highs are never fatiguing though because they are fairly rolled off but you don't notice it much because of the lack of bass.
     
    -Mids -The mid range is quite accurate and i am particularly impressed by the vocals and electric guitars, they are as i said neutral and slightly warm so they don't sound overly analytical.
     
    -Bass -This is where people have issues with these iems, the bass. they have barely any at all. for me personally it brings out the highs and mid range of a song very well, but if you listen to anything that requires bass to sound proper i.e. edm rap or hip-hop you might want to look else where, despite the issues with quantity of bass, the quality is still good but it is hard to appreciate it if you can hardly hear it, that being said i would still recommend these for any other genre other than those that i mentioned. 
     
    -Soundstage - the soundstage is fine nothing to write home about just good enough that it sounds nice and not to forward.
     
    -Build Quality - The build will not amaze you but you wont be breaking them anytime soon they will last if you take care of them. the cable is particularly nice and reminds me of cables used on much higher end iems but not detachable.The isolation is also very nice and i can use them even at low volumes on a bus or in a noisy room.
     
    -Accessories -They come with a nice travel pouch, and a nice set of eartips but no foam tips, i plan on ordering some to see if i prefer them.Edit- The comply foam tips work great and make these isolate even better also slightly improve bass 
     
    -Microphone - I don't use it often but I can tell you that it works perfect for what it is meant to do take calls.
     
    Overall these do well in most categories, i would strongly recommend them. I purchased mine off massdrop in a mystery bag. These are a fantastic budget iem!
    testing tracks: Teardrop by Massive Attack, Take the power back by rage against the machine, Paradise by magic!,Suelta by Alfonso Andre
  2. suman134
    Analyst's delight on budget.
    Written by suman134
    Published Aug 10, 2015
    4.5/5,
    Pros - Detailed and clear SQ, nice cable. Above average MIC clarity.
    Cons - Lacks some bass depth, air and rumble.
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    Intro:-
     
        I am one of those people, who like balance, the flatter the better, and I am really excited about this review!! I love balanced armatures. They are not meaty or full bodied but they are precise.
        A151/P is one of them, launched a few years ago along with CC51p and was well received by both consumers and reviewers too. It housed a balanced armature and even though it was good, there was something missing, a bit of top end extension to be precise.
        So Meelectronics, now MeeAudio released a newer version of the original A151p, with better internals and useability, named it A151 2nd gen priced $50, it houses a Knowles SR-31843 BA driver and according to MEE it has more linear bass, better treble energy and extension while maintaining the excellent clarity of the first generation.
       Most of us are aware of this brand. They stormed bass head community with M9 and M6 and then CC51/p and A151/p did their magic over consumers and reviewers. I too own a few MEE products e.g. CC51p, CW31, M9 and M6.
       I will compare this earphone with CC51p, Ultimate ears UE600 and VSD2S.
       About me, I like balance, no problem with V-shaped sound till the earphone has enough details, a bigger stage and good layering will do wonders, and I am not much bothered about bass till it is fast, but prefer more sub bass, I will forgive everything if it’s got pace with good mids and top end presence. I love spark with my highs, I won’t kill for spark but spark is what makes a phone feel alive, too much will kill the cat and too less will kill the cat too, I don’t like to play around EQs but I have mine applied.
     
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     Accessories Ergonomics and Miscellaneous:-
     
      These are the days where earphones are seriously accessorized with plenty of ear tips and many other things with fancy packaging. But here, things are slightly simple, nothing fancy, nice simple looking box with information about the earphone around it, unboxing is simple too, inside you will find the same old MEE branded carry pouch, but the material has changed from rubberized to cloth type, I find this material to be more prone to attracting dust, it’s not bad but I liked the older one. 3 pairs of basic single flange tips, a pair of Bi and Tri flange tips are included too. Nothing else, it would have been nice if they had included a pair of comply tips and a cable clip, still this is not bad.
      Its cable is rubberized but its soft rubber, not bouncy and microphonics is not bothering even when you wear it cable down. Ergonomically its good, you can wear it both ways easily, without much trouble. Sadly stress reliever at the earphone end feels slightly weaker still does its job nicely. Cable length is 135cm, more than enough for me.
     You will find left/right side earpieces marked with an “L” and “R” and should be easier to locate. Let me give you another advice, the side with MIC in between is the left side.
     Earphone’s ergonomics is awesome, you can wear it cable up and cable down without any trouble, easy on ears, no pressure of any kind on any part of the ear, unlike Piston-3 this earphone gives me no trouble at all.
      Differences between 2nd and 1st gen appearance: - all of us have this question, and even when I don’t have the 1st gen, let me help you with this. First of all the box declares it to be the 2nd gen, 2ndly 3.5mm jack is not straight anymore but right angled, if you bought the mic version you will find the newer model’s mic unit has stress relievers too, which was lacking with the first gen. and that is it, no other differences visually.
     
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     Purple one is from CW31.

     Microphone unit:-
     
     This earphone comes with a universal one button MIC unit which works with apple and android phones flawlessly. Thankfully its button is protruding enough and easier to operate unlike Piston 3, whose remote unit is difficult to get a hold of. A151 2nd has nice clarity. Person on the other end had no problem hearing me. In comparison MIC clarity is better than XBA-C10.
     Operating it is easy, single press picks and ends calls. If not on a call, single press will play music and another press will pause it, double and triple press results into skipping tracks forward and backward respectively. Easy and simple to operate, sadly you can’t control the volume from remote.
     
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      Sound quality:-
       This single BA is one of the finest sounding earphones in its price range. Sound sig is slightly warm and ever so slightly bright, the best thing is its balance!! Killer balance, Highs do have some elevation and there is a hump around vocal region which makes both male and female vocals and some instruments shine, some instruments do sound a bit pale too when compared to UE600. I do find its highs engaging and unlike E50 which lacked some spark, A151 2nd gen has enough to keep me interested. You can throw any kind of music at it and you will experience no lag of any kind, doesn’t matter how fast the music is.
      And for your information, I am happily using Westone tips in these!! Isolation is awesome!! AWWWSSSOOOMMMEEEEE!! Nothing changes much when I switch to bi flange silicon tips everything sounds a bit more forward, notes get slightly sharper but isolation gets worse and stage gets smaller as it loses some depth. Everything else like details, resolution, imaging, layering and clarity remains more or less the same.
      Here are some of the tracks that I used for listening,
      James blunt – 1973(my fav track),
      Adele - set fire to the rain,
      Paul lindford and Chris vrenna – most wanted mash up.
      Plan-B – playing with fire.
     Jessie J- sweet talker,
     Tinie Tempah- wonderman feat Ellie Goulding,
     George Barnett- super hero in a ball and Down on me (this guy knows what he is doing).
     Breaking Benjamin- Who wants to live forever (Queens Cover, new mix).
     Lupe Fiasco- Adoration of the magi Feat. Crystal Torres
     John Newman and Calvin Harris – blame.
     
      Let’s start with lows:-
       First thing first, bass heads need not to apply, don’t even need to look at this earphone, turn around and go for M-duo. As far as I am concerned, this kind of bass suits me, I do like some rumble and air and this has some.
       A151 2nd gen has seriously flatter bass response, similar to my ER-4P, keeping most of the details clarity, has tremendous control and no coloration. It’s the precision that makes up for the lack of air for me. You will hear every bass note, drums, bass guitars, its there but it won’t grab your attention instantly but on bassy tracks, it will move some air, will do what it can but unlike other bassy earphones. Its decay is super fast, I like this, not much air or slam. Extension is good but lacks energy as its goes lower, so sub bass feels lacking a bit, I won’t call its bass thin but lean will be a word for it.
       Ask me about its mid bass hump? Haan haan? No mid bass hump here, thank God. It just keeps in line with sub bass and mids, no bleeding what so ever, this is what bass should be like. Just a bit more air and slam with this speed will do wonders.
       Analytical listeners and serious audiophiles will find this bass enough and engaging.
     
     Magical Mids:-
       Magic happens here!! I love crispy vocals with tingling instruments, and this earphone has it, slightly warm and lean with plenty of details with precision , I don’t need to say balanced do i? If you love vocals, let it be male or female, if you like it slightly warm and crystal clear, this earphone will serve you like nothing else in its price range. Ask me, I have close to 40-50 earphones in this price range and I can tell you none of them are as good as this, UE600 and SHE9850 come close but that’s it, its not as lively or vivid as this beauty. Female do sound sharper and slightly more vivid but males are nothing you can complain about. Splendid, I am running out of adjectives. For those who have it, did you hear those guitar violins and cello? Spectacular isn’t it? Let it be separation or layering, its there.
      Yeah it does lack some body that other earphones like IM-70 or say E50 have, and some organic touch too, but their mids are not as vivid or clear like this. Thankfully notes presentation is really nice, deep and snappy. But when you up the ante you will find these lacking some texture and slightly less resolving, but imaging and presentation remains top class.
      Sound stage is better when compared to E50 and would you believe when I will say UE600? Yeah, its deeper, might be lacking some height and width but it is more even and the depth helps with layering and separation.
     
     Highs:-
      If you know me, you know that I love highs. Some spark is all I want and this earphone has it in it, nothing as shimmery or sparky as Titan-1 but not as pale as E50. It keeps up with mid range and don’t let it run away with all the attention, I don’t feel any dip while transecting from mids to highs, it has plenty of energy too. You can hear everything but slightly lacks some resolving details when compared to more expensive earphone. It’s crisp and crunchy without any signs of fatigue or sibilance. Synthesizers and cymbals sound vivid. Extension is good, nothing to write home about, it does lack highest extensions but it is not a deal breaker.
      These highs are easy on ears, void of harshness, not like Vsonic highs which can annoy and this earphone can be ideal for long listening sessions.
      Only improvements I will bring are some more extension and slightly better upper high end energy.
     
     Comparisons:-
      First thing first let me put it against one of my fav UE600.
     
     UE600 vs A151p 2nd gen:- 
      600 are similarly balanced, both use BA drives, UE600 sounds more mid centric, have slightly bigger bass and decay is worse, similar extension but has more sub bass presence. Mids or say vocals are not as energetic or as vivid as 151, sounds less forward too but both are similarly detailed and clear. Notes lack depth, lacks some resolving details, stage has less depth but has better height and width though.  Highs lack some energy but are not bad by any means, have better energy than E50 but bows down in front of A151 2nd.
      A151 has slightly better layering and imaging but UE600 has better sonic abilities.
      I ain’t picking one, I can’t, I love my UE600 too much.
     
    VSD2S:-
      When a151 2nd gen is pitted against vsd2s, its clearly evident that vsd2 is less detailed, has inferior imaging and presentation, vsd2s has more bass, more spark but lacks mids and vocal energy, it still sounds good but not as good as or as precise as a151, sound stage too is smaller and top end extension feels lacking in front of a151.
     If you can deal with lesser bass quantity and want more details with better presentation, a151 2nd gen will do awesome.
    IMG_20150729_122617.jpg
     
      CC51p:-
     This one simply has bigger bass and can’t qualify as a balanced earphone. Moves plenty of air and has more rumble, no need to say that its bass has worse decay, details is good but lacks precision, mids lack much energy and details too, ahh, sounds so much boring and V shaped. Stage lacks depth. Layering and separation is good but imaging is not up to the mark. Highs do have some life but lacks extension, still not as detailed.
     Need not to say that this earphone just can’t hold its own against A151 2nd gen, lacks any kind of serious detail and presentation.
    IMG_20150729_124622_HDR_1438154669664.jpg
     
     VS VSD5:-
     Now this is a tougher one for A151 2nd gen. Both have similar details clarity and sharpness, VSD5 is noticeably V shaped but still superbly detailed and cohesive. VSD5 has more bass more, move more air, has rumble and thump to keep a bass lover seated. Sub bass are slightly lacking energy still has more presence than 2nd but mid bass makes it sound bassy and slightly loose. Mids are slightly less emphasized, some instruments don’t shine like they do with 2nd, highs are similar but VSD5 lacks sharpness and energy, yeah lacks!! Similar details and it sounds more effortless, no need to say that it sounds more organic and dynamic, has better imaging and presentation too. Sound stage has lesser depth but it has better width and height.
     I have to admit, after listening to A151 2nd one will crave for details and energy from VSD5 but it delivers thicker and more energetic vocals that sound sweeter.
     Isolation is a bit lacking, no microphonics, have to be worn cable down, slightly heavy.
     If you ask me, I will pick both. VSD5 is not as analytical as 151 and 151 is not as dynamic or cohesive as VSD5.
    __________
     
     Piston 3 dosent has the caliber to stand in front of this detail monster. Bass lacks speed when compared and it lacks top end spark or energy, has better sonic abilities though.

    Conclusion:-
     
     Let me tell you, I clearly was not expecting it to compete with UE600, if I have to be unbiased, 151 2nd is more detailed, has better precision and clearer when compared UE600, in other words is a better sounding earphone, slightly lacking air and rumble but that can be ignored sighting that it’s not for bass seekers. For its price it’s a no brainer for analytical listeners and those who like top end energy with sharp notes, shining instruments and engaging vocals.
     I am exceptionally impressed with this piece of earphone, didn’t fell in love instantly like VSD5 but after A-Bing I realize this earphone has serious potential, I will still pick VSD5 over it but I have to admit VSD5 sounds dull in front of A151 2nd and more prone to sibilance, even though 2nd has more overall energy it never crosses the line, no need to amp or anything too, sounds fantastic right out of my Zenfone 2 or even Redmi 2.
     All I would like to add to this SQ is a bit more bass, 20% more air and rumble will do, everything else is nicely done, I love this earphone.
     It will be interesting if MeeAudio will come up with A151 3rd gen!! I think they should come out with A151 Pro with dual BA running the show, if a single BA can do things this, I wonder what two BA drivers will bring to the table.
     Before I finish, I would like to thank Mike from MEE audio and MEE audio for giving me this opportunity.
     
    Thanks for reading!!
     
    Have a nice time guys.
    Cheers.

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    1. View previous replies...
    2. suman134
       You can push them deep, but it gets seriously difficult to remove them from this nozzle, you can see that hump in the middle of it on the first pic and we at times have to remove them to try some other tips, just to test any changes in sound, so i wasnt pushing them deep enough.
       
       Star tips though are really difficult to put on, they bend and dont stretch much, foam one dont bend at least. You can put them on with a side on push.
       If its nicely on, these tips sound awesome!!
      suman134, Sep 28, 2015
    3. GN-0015
      Alrite, that's pretty much all I need to know, thanks. I'll be getting this very soon to back up my Westone UM Pro 10. I love my Westone to death but lately the right side stars having some weird rattling. I'm worried if this is one of those cases where the driver falls off its place like some people have reported.
      GN-0015, Sep 29, 2015
    4. suman134
      I think your UM pro 10 will struggle against the A151P 2nd gen!!
       
      That sounds bad, claim for warranty if its not out if it.
      suman134, Sep 29, 2015
  3. pformagg
    Silky smooth sound for an unbeatable price
    Written by pformagg
    Published Jul 15, 2015
    4.0/5,
    [​IMG]
     
    Firstly, Like to thank Mike from MEE Audio, formally known as MEElectronics for supplying the 2nd generation A151P in ear earphones.
     
    Having reviewed the 1st generation A151P, I was looking forward to the updated version. MEE Audio has replaced the balanced armature drivers with the new Knowles SR-31843, which claims to offer more linear bass and greater treble extension then the 1st generation A151P. The 1st generation was an excellent IEM, with a very smooth sound that had great extension with bass and treble, especially for a single balanced armature earphone, so my expectations are higher than before.
    [​IMG]
    Features
     
    The A151p comes in a standard retail box, they changed from black to white, but all looks very similar to the 1st gen A151P. With the IEM, you get 5 pairs of silicon ear tips, (S,M,L) rounded tips, a double flanged tip and a triple flanged tip, all with a zipper carry case, with MEElectronics logo on the front, as per the 1st gen.
     
    The housing for the drivers look identical, with black and chrome accents, the cable is also identical, being a twisted pair cable. They have updated the 3.5mm jack from straight to a L-shaped plug which helps with cable strain. Also on the updated is the in-line microphone and control remote. I do wish they included a  volume remote on the in-line controls, which is a great feature to have.
     
    [​IMG]
    Sound
     
    Remembering that these are under $50 USD and a single balanced armature, they sound that comes is simply beautiful. Nothing harsh or fatiguing at all. I smiled with the first gen A151P and I smiled with this one.
     
    The sound can be best described as silky and warm, with a nice balance between bass, mids and treble.The sound does focus more on the mids, which is well suited for vocals, but can also handle any music you through at it. Listening to artist such as Diane Krall and Meghan Trainor, both beautiful vocal artist, they really show how smooth these earphones sound. They can also handle more modern music from Robin Schultz or Walk the Moon, with thumping bass lines coming through nicely, although there is low end sub bass missing, but you can’t get everything from single BA. The prominent mid-bass tends to overshadow the rest of the bass frequency in a good way. Nevertheless, the bass performance is still impressive and commendable for a single BA.
    The mids are not laid back or forwarded and just sit nicely in the middle.
     
    They are really smooth and feel so right. There is a well-bodied full textured depth to them that most would not expect from a single BA. There is great detail and clarity that make the sound very clean. The vocals are smooth and nicely positioned in accordance to the instruments that feels very natural. There is very little to no sibilance with these, which is great. Treble has a bit of roll off , but the smoothness and tone is wonderful.  There is a little lack of sparkle and fine detail at the top end, but all in all a great sound and a[​IMG]n enjoyable sound.
     
    Using the 2nd gen A151P on the Roland TD-30 V Drums, I found they performed identical to the 1st gen. Isolation was just as good, as was the sound. Cymbals cut through nicely, but again the lower end was a little distant. They would work well as a vocal IEM, but they are more suited for everyday use, rather that an in ear monitor for musicians or for critical listening.
     
    Conclusion
     
    The 2nd generation A151P has taken the best of the 1st gen and add to it. With greater extension and a overall improvement in sound, the 2nd gen is a winning IEM. The sound is inviting and warm, and with a price tag under $50 USD, you wont find a better sounding IEM in that price range.
     
    Specs:
    Driver: Single Balance Armature
     
    Frequency Response: 20Hz to 19.5KHz
     
    Impednace: 32 Ohms
     
    Sensitivity: 111 dB
     
    Max Power Input: 30mW
     
    Connectors: 4 Pin Stereo 3.5mm Gold Plated L Jack
     
    Cable: Twisted Black 135cm (53 in)
      SpiderNhan and Anjolie like this.
    1. seanwee
      Wow that is the cheapest BA Iem i have seen with a Decent rating "Ahem" XBA-1 fail
      seanwee, Jul 20, 2015
  4. lin0003
    Meelectronics A151P 2nd Generation & M6 Pro Review
    Written by lin0003
    Published Apr 14, 2015
    5.0/5,
    Pros - Excellent Sound Quality, Price
    Cons - See Review

    Meelectronics A151P MKII & M6 Pro Review

    Let me start off by saying a huge thanks to Mike from Meelectronics for sending me the M6 Pro and A151P 2nd Gen to review. From now on, I will simply them as the M6 and A151P respectively, but please don’t confuse them for the original M6 and A151. The A151P is an earphone that I have reviewed a while ago and I remember that I really enjoyed it after a brief transition period where I got used to the sound. The M6 on the other hand, is something that I have never heard before so I cannot give any comparisons to the normal M6 unfortunately.
     
    With the original A151P being one of the most impressive $50 IEMs I had heard at the time, I was very interested to see how Meelectronics changed it up and made improvements. There were a few areas that I felt could be a bit better on the original and I am pleased to say that the main issues have been resolved, the two not only sound very different, but are a little different aesthetically as well. More on that later though.
     
    I usually don’t do dual reviews like these, but considering that I had both the M6 Pro and the A151P on hand at the same time and with them being priced so similarly, I felt like people would be interested in how the two compared. Both have a street price of around $50, their MSRPs are $60 and $80 respectively, but currently on the Meelectronics website they are $50. However, the target audience of these two IEMs are very different despite their similar prices. Whereas the A151P is made for the general Head-Fi and your average consumer, I get the impression from Mike that the M6 Pro, as the name might suggest, is something of a professional stage monitor.
     
    Anyway, let’s get on with the review now.

    **Disclaimer** These were provided to me by Meelectronics in return for an honest, unbiased review.

     

     
    Packaging & Accessories
    he A151P’s box is about as basic as it gets, serving as ample protection for the earphones, but don’t expect it to be pretty. Standard cardboard box with a plastic drawer that slide out. It actually came to me a little beat up and somewhat crushed, but the earphones themselves were not damaged. The M6 Pro’s box is fancier, with a lot more information on the box, including a see through window which allows you see the IEMs. When you open the box, there is a cardboard insert which comes out and there is the box with all the accessories except for the tips, which are in a separate compartment. Quite a different design, never really seen it before, but it looks pretty cool, so it is definitely welcome.

     
    Both the IEMs are not showered with accessories, especially the A151P, so let’s start there. It comes with a manual, some tips and a nice small clamshell case. Quite basic, but it serves its purpose very well. The M6 Pro comes with a few more bits and pieces, such as 2 interchangeable cables, one with a mic and one without. There is also a cable clip on each of them as well as an adapter, a few tips including a set of Complys and finally, a clamshell case. The case is a little bit annoying for me, I’m not sure why it is so big. Personally, I prefer if I can fit a case into a jeans pocket relatively easily and the M6 Pro’s clunky case definitely isn’t the best for portability. Maybe it is larger to accommodate for the different things that professionals have to use with their gear, but I’m not a fan. Other than that, everything is very good.
     

     
    Design
    There have been a few very minor changes made to the A151P’s exterior that are quite obvious, the most major being the right angle jack. Though this may not seem like a large change, I can see less people having problems with the plug with long term use. Running music off your phone or music player when it is in your pocket can really damage a straight plug in the long run. The strain reliefs on the A151P are very good and effective, very flexible and not rigid whatsoever. The earpieces are made out of plastic, and feel like they are well made. These should be able to last a good while, I don’t see any issues with its durability. The cable is awesome, it is very similar to the Westone cables, but is softer and not microphonic whatsoever. The isolation is not great, but it isn’t too bad either. On Joker’s scale the isolation would probably be 3-3.5, acceptable, but these wouldn’t be my first choice on a plane ride.

     
    The M6 Pro is a very unique IEM in a number of ways. As far as I know, the M6 is one of two IEMs from reputable companies that have a detachable cable under $50, the other being the VSD3. Unfortunately I have not heard the VSD3 so I can’t compare them, but the M6 is very well thought out and even includes 2 cables! Replacement cables for Shure cost $30 or so each and the M6 which costs $50 includes 2. The build is very good, plastic, but again, it feels very well made and more durable than the A151P. The detachable cables are not MMCX or 2 pin unfortunately, so you will not be able to use these cables with other IEMs. The cables themselves are rubber coated and a little bit microphonic without a cable clip, but silent with one and they have memory wire. In terms of isolation, they are not quite Shure level just yet, but they are definitely more isolating than the A151P, perhaps between a 3.5 and 4. Should be fine for everyday use as well as use in louder areas. Oh, and also do not that these have an interesting “Lifetime Replacement Program” where if you lose these or break these you can buy another one for half price.
     

     
    Testing Gear
    The A151P is not something that scales a lot, or at all with more upstream gear. I found this to be the case with the original and also with the revised version. They do not need a lot of juice to sound good and here was minimal difference between my Z2 and DX90. Off an IP6 they sounded very good as well. The M6 Pro on the other hand, did scale quite a little. I found that with the DX90, the soundstage and overall sound was much more refined, which was interesting for such a budget priced IEM. Separation got better especially and everything sounded clearer and much cleaner. The treble was also less sharp, but still quite bright. I wouldn’t recommend going and buying a DX90 for your M6, but if you have an amp or dedicated source, try it out before you judge it, it really does change!

     
     
    Sound Quality
    I’ll go on the record and state that personally I prefer the A151P’s sound over the M6, but it isn’t better by a lot and some people may actually prefer the M6 depending on what type of sound they are after. Whereas both are technically V shaped, the A51P sounds very neutral despite the slight midrange recession, which in reality is hardly noticeable. The M6, however, is significantly more V shaped and warmer sounding compared to the A151P, but it has a rather emphasized treble as well for that exciting and fun sound. So before I go more in depth to the review, I would suggest that people who want a more neutral sound signature look towards the A151P whereas those who are seeking a more energetic earphone to pay more attention to the M6. There will be some comparisons later on with the RE-400 and A151P 1st Gen as well as the TF-10.


     
    Bass
    Though I wouldn’t classify myself as a basshead, I do enjoy my bass and prefer a slightly emphasized bass section. Luckily, both are not lacking bass in any way, the M6 is much more bass heavy compared to the A151P. To be honest, I was actually expecting more bass from the M6 than what I got. From what other people said, I thought the M6 was a very bass heavy IEM which sounded warm and veiled, but that was not what I got at all. Initially the M6 was too bass heavy for my taste, being a little flabby and bloated, but with a few days of burn in the bass seems to have settled down, not sure whether this is brain burn in or actual burn in, but I didn’t listen to them during that period. Detail is decent, but I feel like the cleaner A151P’s bass just edges it out. In the sub-bass department, the M6 was ridiculous linear for the price, I did not detect any low frequency roll off at all. They actually reminded me a little of the Audeze range of headphones in the way they presented bass, of course they aren’t as good, but for $50 you wouldn’t expect they to be. It is quite fast, but not the quickest. The A151P’s sub-bass is quicker and also very linear, but I did enjoy the extra kick that the dynamic driver of the M6 gave me. Both earphones are very competent in the bass department and they produced much more than one would expect for the budget price.

     

     
    Midrange
    Looking at Meelectronic’s frequency graph for the M6, I feel like it very accurately reflects what the IEM actually sounds like. The midrange is undoubtedly recessed and I found myself having to turn the M6s up a little more than I usually do to enjoy them. But keep in mind I listen to music at a quite a soft volume. At times I found myself wishing that the midrange was just pulled forward a little, but for most songs I did not have any issues with the midrange. Whereas some earphones may sound veiled because of their recessed midrange, the colder tonality of the M6 means that I never felt like they sounded veiled. Vocals sounded very crisp, but instruments sounded a little bit thin due to the brighter midrange. As I have found with many headphones, midrange clarity usually means a slightly off tone. However, I don’t find this to be a major issue with the sound and whether you will like it depends on your preferences. The A151P is a totally different story. While the frequency graph shows a little bit of a dip in the midrange, I did not hear any midrange recession and it was very smooth overall. Detail was as good as the M6 and on a whole I found the midrange to be mostly flat with maybe a hint of brightness. Both earphones don’t have an issue in vocal sibilance. Overall they are both solid here as well.


     
    Treble
    The only thing that annoyed me with the M6 was the lower treble peak, which could make the earphones a little fatiguing during long listening periods. This unfortunately also introduced a bit of sibilance. It wasn’t bad compared to some other IEMs I have heard, but some people who are more sensitive to treble may want to stay away from these. Cymbals have a nice tone to them, if not a bit sharp, but to me they were relatively accurate and I had no major problems with the treble. Despite the M6 being a budget dynamic driver IEM, the treble extends quite far and didn’t roll off early on. The treble energy is great, they inject that excitement into the M6s that make them a very enjoyable IEM to listen to. Detail is excellent for the price, I think the M6 might be better in terms of treble detail than the A151P. The A151P has a much flatter treble response though, without the peak that the M6 has. This is the area that it has improved the most from the 1st Gen and the treble is much more extended and detailed. It has no sibilance at all and was very detailed as well, just falling short of the M6. There is still a little bit of roll off though, but this is likely to make these more polite and inoffensive to cater for everyone.

     

     
    Soundstage & Imaging
    I wasn’t really sure what to expect with the M6, with it being a budget dynamic driver. I have had some experiences with cheap IEMs that have a very large soundstage, but the M6 isn’t one of them. That is not to say that the soundstage is small, because it isn’t at all, but I simply would not classify the soundstage as large. It is quite wide, but lacks a little bit in depth and height. At this price point, this is to be expected though, and very few budget IEMs have an impressive soundstage. The M6 is good, but not great. The same story goes for the A151P, the soundstage is OK, but not that good. Smaller than the M6, but that is understandable given it is a BA IEM. Not bad, but it doesn’t stand out here.

     
    The imaging is a bit better on both, the A151P edging out the M6 this time. Whereas both do not have large soundstages, they actually have surprisingly good imaging. The A151P is more accurate and I found it easier to judge where instruments were during complicated pieces of music. The M6 does come very close though, and puts up a very god fight indeed. Both are excellent in this area, the new A151P is even better than the old version which was already very competent here.
     
    Separation & Detail
    Both earphones do superbly in this field, being both detailed and clear. The separation was very good on the A151P, but only with the Sony Hybrid tips for some reason. They seemed to add that little something that made the A151Ps sound a lot better than any of the stock tips. They were very strong with vocal separation especially, they sounded as good here as the RE-400s, which I will do a full comparison with later on in the review. The M6 was excellent as well, but this time they were stronger with instrument separation due to that recessed midrange which let the vocals down a bit. Both pass with flying colours here, no complaints at all.

     
    Once again, the tuning of both these earphones means that the detail really shine though. The A151P is particularly improved from the original because of the updated drivers with the better upper frequency response. Detail on these are comparable to many $100 IEMs and it falls just short of the RE-400, quite a feat for something that costs just half of what the RE-400 does. The M6 is about equally detailed, but the stronger bass response does mask some of the detail. The prominent treble allows a lot of the upper end details some through though. Both are very god in terms of detail and it is very impressive what these achieve considering their $50 price point.
     
    Comparisons
    In this section I will be comparing the two IEMs to other choices that are somewhat similar in one way or another. Starting off with the original A151P vs the A151P 2nd Gen, I found the 2nd version to be significantly better. The bass seemed to be a little bit stronger, the midrange was better balanced and lost that slightly nasal tone and the treble is much more extended. It is also more detailed and had a slightly bigger soundstage. In short, it improved on every area of the original, and while it do not sound like a totally different earphone, it does sound significantly better. Now let’s move on to the other comparisons.

     

    Meelectronics A151P vs HiFiMAN RE-400
    I was looking forward to this comparison and very interested to see how the underdog in the A151P would do matched up against an earphone many recognise as the best $100 IEM. In short, it does very well, even beating it in a few areas – in terms of bang for your buck, these are likely to be the better choice, you may even like these more. I feel like the A151P is better-rounded than the RE-400, mainly down to the better bass and treble extension. The RE-400 is a little A (?) shaped where the midrange is emphasized. Though this may appeal to some people, I personally fund them to be lacking in the bass department, which was quite light. The midrange is awesome on the RE-400 and it hands down beats the A151P, but the Meelectronics IEM takes the bass just as easily for me. The treble is a bit more of a toss-up, I’m not entirely sure which one is better, they all sound very good, but the A151P is a little brighter, I’ll let you decide what you prefer yourself. The RE-400 is a bit better with separation and detail, but this is marginal and the RE-400 isn’t a very detailed IEM on a whole. Soundstage is about the same, both are on the intimate side of things. The imaging is a bit better on the RE-400. Again, this is marginal. So you might be thinking that the RE-400 wind comfortably right? Not quite, not for me at least. I prefer the sound signature of the A151P more than the RE-400 and despite the RE-400 being more technically proficient, I get more enjoyment listening to the A151P so I’m going to have to say that the A151P is “better” than the RE-400. Obviously YMMV, but the fact that the A151P comes so close to the RE-400 is no mean feat.

     

     
    Meelectronics M6 Pro vs Logitech TF-10
    Ah, the good old TF-10, nothing can ever replace it in my heart, It is the earphone that started it all, the reason why I began to love music. After a while, I finally chased down a pair and when I first heard the M6, I straight away felt like it was like a mini TF-10. You might think it is pointless comparing the M6 to something that is long discontinued now, but many people have had some sort of experience with the TF-10, and also I want to J. The bass is not quite as good as the TF-10, but it does have more sub-bass rumble. The midrange is a tad more recessed than the Logitech and has a similar metallic tone to the TF-10, which I actually happen to like, but again, the TF-10 is a bit cleaner and takes this as well. Treble is once again, quite similar, except the treble spike on the M6 is sharper, which introduces a bit of sibilance the TF-10 does not have. Soundstage is something the M6 seems to be a bit better in, it is wider, but imaging is better on the triple driver TF-10. Separation and detail is the same story, the TF-10 is a bit better. Overall, the TF-10 is a better IEM without a doubt, but the point that I am highlighting I that the M6 has a similar tonality and you can experience the now extinct TF-10 for just $50. It is probably the closest IEM I have heard to the TF-10.

     

     
    Summary
    This review is finally drawing to an end and to sum it up, both the A151P and M6 Pro are very impressive IEMs from Meelectronics. Both punch above their price range and the A151P really hits my sweet spot. The cheapest IEM I have heard that bests it is the Dunu Titan 1, which costs over twice its cost. It is truly the jack of all trades. The M6 on the other hand, is a very unique IEM that was possibly never meant for the Head-Fi market, but found its way in anyway. Designed as a professional monitor, it does a remarkable job at simply allowing you to enjoy he music. If I had to choose one, it would be the A151P, but luckily I don’t. The cost of both is the only a mere $100 and I feel like they would bring you much more enjoyment than any $100 IEM would. The A151P gains a perfect 5 stars from me whereas the M6 Pro is awarded an excellent 4.5 stars. 

      JNOISE JA and SpiderNhan like this.
  5. thatBeatsguy
    Smooth Operator, Part 2
    Written by thatBeatsguy
    Published Apr 5, 2015
    4.0/5,
    Pros - Addicting mid-centric sound signature in an affordable package.
    Cons - Sound is not for the average consumer.

    Intro

    Before I begin, I would like to thank Mike at MEElectronics for providing the review sample of the A151P Generation 2 in this review. Let me clarify that I am neither affiliated with MEElectronics or any of its staff, nor am I being compensated or paid in any form by writing this review. This review features only my own honest personal opinion and as such should be taken with a grain of salt. All pictures taken in this review are taken and owned by me.
     
    So, a couple weeks ago, I wrote a review of the MEElectronics M6 PRO, an impressive new IEM from MEElectronics and one of their many cool new releases this spring. Now, MEElectronics was kind enough to also send me a sample of another of their new releases, and this week we’re going to take a look at it – the A151P Generation 2, an update over the original A151.
     
    (A quick note before we begin: The review sample in this review is of the A151P and not the basic A151. The P version has an inline microphone and 1-button remote; aside from that there aren’t any differences to the base model.)
     
     

    ~~ Aesthetics ~~

    Packaging, Accessories

    The A151P Gen 2 comes in a simple printed box with basic information laid all around. An image of the A151P is printed out on the front. Specifications are on the left side of the box, features on the right, and more info about the A151 on the back. Nothing is lacking or overdone here; just a box that does its job of keeping your IEMs safe as they get to you.
     
    Opening the package, you’re greeted with the IEMs and a soft carry case set in a plastic container. Inside the carry case are 4 extra sets of eartips and a manual, as well as a 1 year manufacturer’s warranty. Unlike the M6 PRO I previously reviewed, the A151P doesn’t have the lifetime replacement policy, which lets you replace the M6 PRO for half price, no questions asked. Given that the A151P Generation 2 is an amazing IEM (oops, spoiler alert!), it’s a bit of a disappointment. But otherwise, I have zero complaints.
     
     
     

    Design, Build, Microphonics

    If the A151P was placed in a contest of weirdest-looking IEMs, they wouldn’t make it past the auditions – the A151P means serious business, and it definitely looks the part. They have a very serious, matured look to them which I really like – a quality that shines through to its other aspects. They don’t have any outstanding colours or aggressive styling – just a shape that simply works. Durability-wise they seem pretty iffy with their all-plastic construction and rather concerning strain relief on the housings, but they are pretty durable and should hold up to everyday use without complaint. Their braided cable is very flexible and moves about as freely as you do; as such they have very little cable noise, even without a shirt clip in use. Overall very good performance in this sector.
     
     

    Fit, Comfort, Isolation

    The fit of the A151 Generation 2 is easy and straightforward (I’m still looking at you, M6 PRO) – loop cable around ears, stick IEMs in ears, plug into source device, and press play. (Of course, if that doesn’t work, just try a smaller or bigger pair of eartips.) However, I did find them to get uncomfortable over longer periods of time due to their unvented design, making a pretty tight vacuum seal in my ears. On the other hand, this unvented design gives them excellent passive isolation, similar to that of my Final Audio Design Heaven 2.
                                                                                                                                           
     
     

    ~~ Sound ~~

    Specs

     
    Headphone Type
    Closed-back in-ear monitor (over-ear only)
    Driver Type
    1x micro balanced armature driver
    Frequency Response
    20 – 19,500 Hz
    Max. Input Power
    N/A
    Sensitivity
    111 dB
    Impedance
    32 Ω
    Weight
    N/A
    Cable
    1.35m (53”) twisted  cable
    Connector
    3.5mm (1/8”) gold-plated right-angle TRRRS connector
    Accessories
    Soft carry case
    3x sets black silicone eartips (S/M/L)
    1x set black silicone bi-flange eartips (M)
    1x set black silicone tri-flange eartips (M)
    Product manual
    12 month manufacturer warranty

     
     

    Equipment, Burn-in

    All my music listening is done on my PC and 5th-generation iPod Touch; media and games usage are spread out across a host of other devices. For the EQ test, I used Electri-Q on the PC via foobar2000 and the EQu app on the iPod. As always, my list of test tracks can be viewed here for reference, although I will mention a few songs in the review for a more specific point of reference. If a link is available, I’ll also link it below. The eartips used on the M6 PRO during the review are the large stock single-flange eartips.

    As always, the A151P Generation 2 was burned-in for at least 50 hours prior to writing this review. Over that time I noticed the sound smoothed out slightly. It’s not a big deal, but it’s there. Anyways, let’s not waste any time and get right down to the sound review!
     
     

    Sound Quality

    The A151P Gen. 2 took me a little while to get used to its very mid-focused sound. But, having an immense craving for midrange, I eased into the sound pretty easily, and what I heard was honestly really, really good.
     
     
    Bass:
    Well, I guess this is fairly obvious, but I love bass. Bass with weight, impact, and rumble. But though I’m not the basshead I was in my earlier years, I still like a little punch in my music every once in a while. And if bass is what you’re looking for, you might as well read a different review because the A151P will most certainly not give that to you. The bass on these IEMs take a good step back from the spotlight, allowing lots of room for the rest of the frequencies to shine. They start rolling off pretty quickly from about 70 Hz down, but at regular listening volume I can hear a sine sweep down to a low 25 Hz, so pretty good extension. But even though it’s there, you probably won’t be able to hear the thump and rumble in bass-heavy songs (take any EDM song, for example). On the other hand, they exhibit no bleed into the midrange up and have a very accurate and speedy punch, so they have that going for them, which in my book is very good.
     
     
    Midrange:
    After my early basshead phase, midrange became my #1 priority. For instruments to shine, the midrange had to sound great. And as I study the piano, my earlier IEMs had trouble reproducing the nuances of piano tracks that I so often drift to sleep to. And, well, it’s pretty safe to say the A151P has absolutely no trouble doing that same thing. For a $50 IEM, I honestly haven’t heard a midrange performance of this calibre. They have a neutral tonality with a very slight warm tilt and a smooth, natural presentation. Detail retrieval is one of the best I’ve heard in this price range. It really makes vocals, guitars, and pianos come alive (Link, Link). If you’re looking for midrange above all else in a $50 pair, I don’t think you should look any further than the A151P Generation 2.
     
     
    Treble:
    From the get-go you can notice the A151P has a pretty laid-back treble. I’m usually not a fan of this as it obscures some details, but in this case the treble really works. It still retains a lot of detail and crispness while maintaining its smooth response. Crash cymbals are very nicely reproduced and mix well with the drums, which are also rather laid-back. Rim shots on drums and claps remain snappy and quick. However, I did notice that “S” and “SH” sounds are still pretty accented, and they do roll-off slowly at the very high end, but with performance like this, it’s hard to complain.
     
     
    Soundstage/Presentation:
    The A151P Generation 2’s soundstage is, to put it simply, amazing. It mixes so well with the sound signature that it makes me want to just kick back and listen to the music. It’s decently-sized, has a nice amount of air, and great separation between instruments – great for rock and acoustic music.


    Summary:
    I’ll admit, I’m not good at making analogies, but I felt that this time I needed to make one. The A151P Generation 2’s sound reminds me of a chocolate-orange shake I had at a restaurant. The name alone is a little intimidating, but from the first sip, it tasted amazing. The flavours were mixed so well together that it just felt right. The sound of the A151P is just like that. Everything – the bass, the midrange, and the treble – all come together and work in a unison unlike anything I’ve ever seen. They blended with each other so coherently that I found no excuse to put them down. The result? A sound that’s insanely addicting in an IEM so unassuming.
     
     

    Other Media

    Games:
    I can’t say the A151P is very good for gaming – but on the other hand, it isn’t that bad, either. Their mid-centric signature allows you to hear more of the voices and other details over loud explosions and gunfire in FPS games, but they can’t really catch up to all of the action and leave a few tiny details lost in translation. Of course, that doesn’t mean they’re unusable for gaming – I myself would use them – but there are other pairs that are better than the A151P here.
     
     
    Movies:
    The A151P’s mid-centric signature allows for a very intimate presentation when watching a movie, great for quieter love stories and whatnot. However, their lean bass response prevents me from recommending them for grandiose, epic action movies, where bass is important to give you that rumbling, immersive feel. In the earlier case, though, I can’t recommend this enough.
     
     

    EQ Response

    Balanced Armature IEMs like the A151P Generation 2 have always been known for rather weak and lean bass compared to dynamic-driver competitors, and I was keen on keeping it that way, but I tried bass-boosting the A151P anyway to see how they perform. And to be honest, I was very pleasantly surprised. Using my super bass EQ curve, I found the A151P’s BA driver to not even flinch or distort under a 10 dB bass boost.
     
     

    Value

    The A151P Generation 2 retails at the same price as its predecessor, which is $50. Well, as I don’t have the original A151P, I can’t really say much about their price-to-performance ratio, but I can say for certain that that ratio on the Generation 2 A151P is phenomenal. Now, I’ve tried a lot of other sets around this price myself, and these IEMs have definitely held up to each and every one of them. They have impressive value for the price, and I can’t recommend them enough for midrange lovers.
     
     

    Comparison

    Versus HiFiMAN RE-300h ($50):
    The HiFiMAN RE-300h is a $50 budget competitor hailing from the east, whose two remote-including brothers have polarized opinions and sparked debate and discussion not too long after release. This no-remote H version seems to be the best-sounding one from all three, and against the A151P Generation 2, they make a pretty fair match. Both IEMs have a smooth, non-fatiguing sound that you can listen to for hours on end, but each have their distinctions. The RE-300h has a warm, slightly bass-emphasized sound, whereas the A151P has a much more neutral, mid-centric sound. Both have amazing price-to-performance ratios, and to those with more consumer tastes, the RE-300h will more than please those types of ears, but to me, the A151P takes the cake with its addicting, lifelike midrange.
     
                                              
    Versus Final Audio Design Heaven 2 ($70):
    Now this IEM is a special one. When I reviewed it, I gave it the highest score I gave an IEM at the time. To me, they were that good – and, well, they still are. Their performance is comparable to some of the best IEMs in my collection, and against the A151P, the challenger seems to hold up pretty well against the Heaven. Both are excellent mid-centric IEMs, and have some distinct qualities that separate one from the other. The Heaven 2 is slightly warmer, fuller, and has a more intimate presentation, while the A151P is more neutral and has a wider, airier soundstage. Like I said, either way, both are excellent mid-centric IEMs, and if you love midrange, you can’t really go wrong with eithcer of them.
     
     

    ~~ Conclusion ~~

    I can say with certainty that the MEElectronics A151P Generation 2 is one awesome IEM. Though I can’t say it’s outstanding in its build or looks, it makes up for its shortcomings with a smooth, relaxing, and highly addicting mid-centric sound. Though this isn’t the IEM to recommend to the bass connoisseur, if you’re a midrange-lover on a budget, look no further.
     
     
    Category
    Score
    Comment
    Packaging, Accessories
    7/10
    Simple packaging and a great host of accessories. Not much more to say there.
    Design, Build, Microphonics
    7/10
    The A151P’s over-ear wearing design, lightweight plastic build, and twisted cable reduce microphonics to a whisper while maintaining great build quality.
    Fit, Comfort, Isolation
    8/10
    The A151P fits my ears easily and provides excellent passive isolation, although at the slight cost of comfort.
    Microphone
    N/A
     
    Bass
    7/10
    The A151P’s bass is very linear, which will easily shoo away bass-lovers. However, they still retain a decent amount of punch for most genres.
    Midrange
    9/10
    For $50, I have never heard such midrange prowess. Smooth, natural, and lifelike, it gets me hooked every time I put them on and press play.
    Treble
    8/10
    Their laid-back presentation allows for a more relaxed listening session, but they still retains lots of detail that doesn’t leave me wanting.
    Presentation
    8/10
    The A151P’s presentation perfectly complements the mid-centric sound signature with a good-sized soundstage that places instruments around you like you’re in the room with them.
    Gaming, Movies
    7/10
    Although their mid-centric sound signature is not what I’d recommend for non-music media, they perform pretty well in those aspects nonetheless.
    EQ Response
    9/10
    A bass boost really gets these things kicking, giving you a very enjoyable sound signature that I can’t put down.
    Value
    10/10
    For $50, they’re easily one of the best IEMs out there for me.
    Total
    8/10
    Do you love midrange? Are you on a tight budget? Look no further than the A151P Generation 2.

     

    Shout-Outs, Gallery

    First of all, I would like to again thank Mike at MEElectronics for providing the review sample of the A151P Generation to for this review. I got to say, MEElectronics has definitely raised the bar for their IEMs, and I can’t wait to see their upcoming Pinnacle P1 flagship coming later this spring!
     
    This time, I wasn’t able to get a photoshoot done for the A151P as the powers that be just couldn’t let me, and I can’t really do away with subpar images from my old camera, now, can I? Rest assured, if you want to know what they look like, the A151P Generation 2 looks pretty much identical to its Generation 1 predecessor, so there you go.
     
    Anyways, this is thatBeatsguy signing off; thanks for reading!
     
     

    About MEElectronics

    “MEElectronics is home to a group of audio gear enthusiasts who enjoy hearing our music at its absolute best. We believe that high quality headphones don’t have to be expensive and that a great listening experience should be available to everyone at an accessible price. We want to spread our appreciation for music by building quality headphones in hopes that they will let music inspire everyone as it inspires us.
     
    Since 2005 we have been committed to pursuing the ultimate listening experience, winning acclaim from casual listeners and audiophiles around the world. Our expertise and manufacturing capability allow us to develop and market headphones for serious audiophiles and casual consumers, men and women, young and old. We strive to bring our customers exceptional performance at affordable prices through cost-effective marketing and well-managed distribution channels, all accompanied by an unsurpassed customer experience.
    Headphones are our passion, and every day we work to provide Music Enjoyment for Everyone.”
     
    Link to site: http://www.meelec.com/
     
     

    Changelog

      indieman and Flamess like this.
    1. View previous replies...
    2. d2n0
      Mine has tapping sounds from the armature and it is annoying. Do you have similar problem ?
      d2n0, Apr 13, 2015
    3. thatBeatsguy
      Tapping sounds? I'm not having that problem on my pair.
      thatBeatsguy, Apr 13, 2015
    4. Shawn71
      Any hint to differentiate externally G2 from G1 (cosmetic change)?....
      Shawn71, May 27, 2015
  6. Hisoundfi
    From good to great! Meelectronics A151P 2nd Generation
    Written by Hisoundfi
    Published Feb 12, 2015
    4.0/5,
    Pros - High resolution, Balanced Tuning, Crystal Clarity, Crisp highs that aren't harsh, Microphone, One year warranty
    Cons - Linear bass isn't for bassheads
    At the time this review was written, the Meelectronics A151P 2nd Generation was on sale for $49.99 USD. Here is a link to their product site:
     
    http://www.meelec.com/A151P_Balanced_Armature_In_Ear_Headphone_2nd_Gene_p/ep-a151p-bk-mee.htm
     
    Let’s just skip the mumbo jumbo and cut straight to the chase. These impressed me from the beginning. So much so, I couldn’t help myself and started posting positive impressions the first day I got them in. I hope my review will give you a clear picture of what they sound like, and inspire some to give them a shot.
     
    Disclaimer
     
    First and foremost, a great big thank you to Mike at Meelectronics for supplying me with a sample to use for review purposes. I am in no way affiliated with Meelectronics, and was given an opportunity to sample this product in exchange for an honest review
     
    My Background
     
    To start this review, please allow me to share a little bit about myself so you can better understand my observations. I AM NOT a numbers and graphs audiophile or sound engineer. Personal audio enthusiast? Absolutely! Headphone junkie? Possibly…
     
    There’s something about quality DAPs, amplifiers and earphones that intrigues me, ESPECIALLY if they can be had for low prices. I’m a budget-fi guy. I buy the $5 to $400 headphone or IEM that looks promising, in hopes that I can find that one new gem that can perform above its price range, and compete with the big boys of this industry. If you look at my profile and inventory you will see I have purchased many, and I mean MANY different headphones ranging from $5 all the way up to $400. For me, it’s been more about getting great price to performance ratio, and hearing a variety of different gears with diverse signatures. With this hobby, we often times pay a lot of money for minor upgrades. One thing I’ve learned is that price DOES NOT always indicate good sound and build quality.
     
     I’m always looking for great audio at a great price. I’m after headphones and IEMs that give me that “WOW” factor. I can appreciate different signatures as long as they are presented in a way that is pleasing to my ears. It’s my pleasure to share my experience with audio products, and make recommendations based on what I have heard.
     
    Introduction
     
    About a year ago, I received my Meelectronics A161P in the mail. Having already purchased several of their products, and liking every single one, for the first time I felt inspired to comment to their company about something I didn’t necessarily care for. Although the sound was very good, the cable on the A161P was VERY thin and seemed frail. I didn’t see how these would withstand the test of time, so I emailed the company to basically ask them to please never use that cable again. I stated that I liked the build quality of the original A151P, and the sound of the A161P, and that the shortcomings of each of them were offset from having what I would consider “the complete package”. I thought that would be the end of it, but what I got was a very thoughtful response from Mike over at Meelectronics. We emailed back and forth for a while, and I will say that he is the perfect man for his job. I could sense his enthusiasm about earphone design and sound, and he was very genuine about it as well. I consider Mike a friend, and with our conversations I’m now eating crow because my A161P to this day are still intact.
     
    The Package
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    The Meelectronics A151P 2nd Generation comes in a small, and very sharp looking white and black box. Every section of the box was utilized to print very useful information about the earphones, especially the back of the box which displayed a frequency graph, a nice description of their sound signature and a small picture and description of the supplied accessories and owner’s manual. The sides of the box displays simple specs and a description of the model’s build features. The bottom of the box displays their one year warranty. Yes, a one year warranty on a sub one hundred dollar USD earphone. Awesome!
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    Opening the box, a clear plastic shell holds the earphone in place and displays the housings and cable beautifully. A semi-solid mesh clamshell case with the Meelectronics logo is mounted underneath the earphones, holding the cable slack and accessories.
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    Inside the case there are four sets of tips to add to the pre-installed (medium size) tips that are on the IEM already. There are five sets total: S-M-L single flange silicone tips, a medium-ish set of dual flange tips, and a medium-ish set of triple flanges. All are of good quality. One thing to note is that the bore on these are pretty small, due to the small hozzle that the A151P 2nd Generation possesses. This might make tip rolling a challenge if none of the stock tips work. For my ears the large single flange tips work perfectly.
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    The Meelectronics A151P 2nd Generation is almost identical to the original in both looks and build quality, with the only noticeable exception being the new and improved L shaped plug. They feature a braided black cable that is very pliable and with virtually no memory. It honestly reminds me of cables from much more expensive headphones. Another nice thing about the cable is that it is noticeably longer than most headphones, which I consider a nice touch.
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    They have a cable cinch that is heavy duty and goes very low on the cable (to about my lower chest naval area), so if you have a head the size of a walrus you still won’t have any problems with the cable reaching your ears. There is a chin slider, but I consider it more of a chest and neck slider because you won’t get it up to your chin due to the microphone placement. I like it because it snugs things up without it becoming a choker collar. The inline single button remote is on the left side leading up right around my collar bone and blends in well with the cable and seems very sturdy. 
    The housings are built of what appears to be a very sturdy and nicely finished plastic. Their design is clever and very ergonomic. I really like the material use for the strain reliefs because it has a nice “give” to it. It’s a beautiful combination of black and chrome, and over the course of wearing them I got a lot of compliments on how sharp they look.
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    Fit and Microphonics
     
    This model is designed to go over the ear, so microphonics are not a problem. They can also be worn under the ear easily, but you will notice slight microphonics if you do. Like all in-ear monitors, finding the right tip that is the right size and seals well is essential in getting the best sound quality you can achieve from your earphone.
     
    Review Materials
     
    I primarily did my demo with my LG G3 phone, and with my portable rig, a Samsung Galaxy S (Wolfson chip) with Topping NX1 amplifier. I also used my Fiio E17 DAC/AMP at 24 bit, 96000 Hz out of my laptop setup. I also tested them with other portable DAPs and amplifiers, and didn’t notice any significant changes with different sources. I used Google music downloaded in its highest quality download setting (320 kbps), and streamed flac via Tidal streaming service. I made sure to have approximately 30 hours of burn-in by playing them at loud volumes with different varieties of music.
     
    I used my usual same songs for testing this gear:
     
    “Limit to your love” by James Blake
    “One” by Metallica
    “Madness” by Muse
    “Get Lucky” by Daft Punk
    “Some Nights” by Fun
    “The Soundmaker” by Rodrigo y Gabriela
    “Bassically” by Tei Shi
    “One” by Ed Sheeran
    “Outlands” from the Tron Legacy Soundtrack
    “Sultans of Swing” by Dire Straits
     
    Sound
     
    These were great right out of the box. I definitely had a “WOW” moment at first listen because owning the original A151P, I was expecting a slight upgrade. The improvement in sound quality is huge in comparison. This is honestly what I was hoping for the first time and didn’t get plus a whole lot more. Simply put, it’s the best single armature I’ve ever heard. The Knowles SR-31843 balanced armature drivers these have are great.
     
    Bass
     
    Anyone who knows me on Head-fi knows I’m partial to a bass forward presentation. Punch and rumble are almost a requirement to get a thumbs up from me. With these guys, their bass tuning is linear and complimentary, but I really like it because it works so well with the rest of their signature. While doing lower frequency test sweeps, I notices a slight roll of from about 70Hz down to 20Hz, and didn’t detect any rumble underneath that. From about that point on everything seemed to evenly work its way over to 200Hz. One thing I will say is that because of the bass tuning, I wouldn’t recommend them for noisy environments or commuting. These are more of a “sit down and enjoy the music” earphone. You will get a sense of just about every bass note that is played, but just not with the same rumble as some bass cannon phones. Most bassheads won’t like it, while purists and audiophiles looking for flat tuning will love it. With hip hop, the lowest of earth quaking lows won’t rattle your skull, and with rock music you will hear the kick drums, but you won’t feel them. However, bass guitars sound beautiful, and for the most part every bassline makes its presence felt and can be appreciated without feeling like these are thin sounding for the most part. I hope that description makes sense. The only other way to give you a picture of what the bass will sound like I would say is to try to imagine the bass response of a high quality pair of semi open full size cans, but in an in ear monitor form. Mid bass is not something to concern about because what’s there is linear, slightly warm and beautiful, and doesn’t bleed or distort anything at all.
     
    Midrange
     
    This is where I’m blown away by these. Dare I say it’s some of the best in ear monitors I’ve ever heard for vocals? I just did, and with no shame! It’s flat tuning with just the slightest bit of tilt towards warm and mid-centric. I didn’t get veil from any male vocals I listened to, and women’s vocals were spectacular. Acoustic guitars were outstanding, as I could make out the vibration of the strings, not just the note that they were playing. When multiple vocals were playing at the same time there was beautiful separation and texture. It was enough warmth to make it fun to listen to and without feeling like anything was out in front of anything else. These phones shine with acoustic, vocal, rock, classic rock and metal music. There were times during my review I would close my eyes to try and picture just how “real” these sounded. Words that came to my mind were “balanced”, “smooth” and “accurate”. Is there anything about it in terms of what I would improve? Maybe a multi balanced armature driver set up might tweak things to be even more resolving and textured, but for a single armature I’m blown away.
     
    Treble
    Another thumbs up from me in regards to this area. The treble is crisp without any harshness. Cymbals sound natural and balanced. There were no sibilantly pronounced letter S from what I heard. Resolution is fantastic and I never sensed the sound getting pasted together. I did detect a very slight roll off going into the highest upper frequencies somewhat along the lines of the bass response but on the opposite side of the spectrum. I heard EVERYTHING, but just like how I didn’t “feel” the lower bass notes, I didn’t get any harshness on the very top end. I hope those of you who are reading this are getting a sense of how fun and easy to listen to these are without getting overwhelmed by bass or harsh treble, yet you still get every note. It’s genius tuning in my honest opinion.
     
    Soundstage and Imaging
     
    Some will say the soundstage is narrow because of the minimal roll off in both directions, but I still wouldn’t say that this earphone is just midrange and nothing else, because that’s not the case at all. Yes the midrange takes the center stage and is complemented by the bass and treble, but the buck doesn’t stop there. A little more sub bass extension would make the depth better, and a little more crispness would give these more height, but I am glad that’s not the case with these. They are pleasant sounding, and the resolution and fast response from top to bottom in combination with that fantastic midrange gives these a quality that puts these in my group of favorite IEMs easily.
     
    Imaging is spectacular for this make and price. Like I said earlier in the review, there were times listening to them I had to close my eyes and just appreciate how “real” they sounded. I say that in all seriousness. You get a sense of space and balance in the tuning that’s just right. While it doesn't seem as open and airy as the likes of the Havi B3 Pro 1, it makes you want to just kick back and enjoy them.
     
    Comparisons
     
    Meelectronics A151p (original first generation) ($40-$60 USD on many sites)
    The original version seemed to have a beefier bass response, especially in the mid-bass range, which I don’t consider a good thing. The midrange was warmer and less resolving. Treble was more rolled off in the older offering. The original didn’t necessarily sound bad, but the 2nd Generation bests the original in all areas, and make the original seem stuffy, congested and sloppy in comparison. The 2nd Generation is faster in attack and decay and resolution is twice as good from what I hear. Honestly, after hearing the new model I have no use for the original aside from comparison purposes.
     
    Sony XBA-1 ($25-$50 USD on many sites)
    The A151P 2nd Generation boast a better build in comparison to the Sony offering. I prefer the braided Meelectronics cable as compared to the funky J-cord of the Sony offering. The Sony boasts a beefier low end that is more satisfying for EDM, Pop, and Hip Hop genres, and works better for commuting. The more linear bass of the A151P is faster in its response, and from the midbass all the way up through the treble frequencies it is more crisp and resolving. On the road and for use in noisy environments I’ll give it to the Sony, but for critical listening and acoustic and band music, it’s A151P 2nd Generation all the way.
     
    Zero Audio Carbo-Tenore ($45-$60 on many sites)
    The Tenore boast the sub rumble that the A151P 2nd Generation doesn’t, which gives it an edge with songs that call for it. I find the midbass on the Meelec model to be superior, due to it being leaner and faster yet still present. Those who know the tenore understand how balanced it is, but with that said there is such excellent resolution from top to bottom with the A151P 2nd Generation that it makes even the tenore appear to have a bleed in the mid bass region and even seem slightly sluggish from top to bottom on some tracks. Matter of fact, I find overall resolution, imaging, and seperation to be better on the Meelec. I also prefer the build quality on the A151P 2nd Generation by far. The Meelec offering also offers a touch more treble energy without being harsh.
     
    Conclusion
    The Meelectronics A151P is the best single balanced armature I have heard at the time of writing this review. It’s a high resolution sound with a warm tilt and crisp upper frequencies that never get too harsh. They work for all genres of music, but especially for rock, acoustic music, and vocals. If you want balanced audiophile sound and don’t want to break the bank, I highly recommend these.
     
    Thanks for reading and happy listening!
      jant71, ozkan, thatBeatsguy and 3 others like this.
    1. View previous replies...
    2. Hisoundfi
      Sorry @ozkan I never heard those IEMs. 
      Hisoundfi, Mar 3, 2015
    3. lordsinister
      @Twister6
      Yo, just curious how these would compare to the Steelseries Flux Pro and TDK BA200, or anyone else who own or heard them before? For $36 from Massdrop, these would be a bargain if it can keep up with the something like the BA200. Thanks.
      lordsinister, Apr 8, 2015
    4. BOOTYMONSTER
      thank you for this review , i just ordered a pair from best buy for $41.75 shipped with a price match with amazon . the only buds i've tried are the gummi + and they were terrible . was gonna get the brainwaves delta and then was gonna get the xiaomi piston 3 and then found a deal on these and your review sparked a few hours of googling and the decision to order a pair . i'm crossing my fingers to get the 2nd generation with the 90 degree plug . if not i'll return them and settle in for the 2 week wait from amazon/MEE
      BOOTYMONSTER, Jul 3, 2015