Pioneer SE-CH5T

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Pioneer SE-CH5T.jpg

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Pros: Excellent Price to Performance, Excellent Mids and Lows, Great Highs and Vocals, Tuned well, Fairly capable Technicality and Tonality
Cons: Slightly Harsh Treble, Slightly Restrictive and Congested Soundstage
Since there are limited amount of insight and review of the Pioneer SE-CH5T I have decided to share my experience.

So, without further ado here is my unbiased thoughts taken into consideration the price I got it at:

Highs/Treble - Great 4.5/5

Clear and crisp with a slight treble emphasis but to some the treble might be slightly harsh as they may experience a certain degree of treble fatigue in certain treble heavy songs.

Mids - Excellent 5/5

Balanced to a certain degree that doesn't sound dull and lifeless but lively and fun in a good way.

Lows/Bass - Excellent 5/5

Slightly warm in a good way; yet tight, clean, airy, punchy and well controlled for the price of $60*. Surprisingly the SE-CH5T isn't bass heavy at all when compared to similarly priced IEM's.

Vocals - Great - 4.5/5

The slightly warm bass adds some 'sparkle' to both male and female vocals while the slight treble emphasis gives the SE-CH5T a slight edge to male and female vocals that are higher in the voice category spectrum.

Soundstage - Great 4.5/5

Airy and spacious to a certain degree with great instrument separation helped by the proprietary yet gimmicky sounding "Airflow Control Port" technology; but to some the "Airflow Control Port" a small 'D-Shaped' pinhole sized tube leading towards the 9.7 mm driver might cause the soundstage to sound slightly restrictive and congested when compared with earbuds with open backs or larger ports.

Build Quality and Functionality - Great 4.5/5

Housing 5/5: High quality durable matte black plastic with great metallic matte black paint job. Excellent for the price paid for IEM's using plastic as housing material.

Stock Tips 4.5/5: High quality short wide bore black rubbery silicone that sits closer to the earwax guard when installed. Not too firm and not too soft but to some the fitment and comfort might be an issue. Unfortunately, it doesn't come packaged with memory foam tips but at the same price point I admit that some Chi-Fi IEM's comes bundled with bonus memory foam tips.

Cable 4/5: High quality twisted rubberised cable with little to no microphonics at all that comes with a standard universal one button controller that has a satisfying click to it. No microphonics at all but unfortunately the cable isn't detachable but at the same price point I admit that majority of Chi-Fi IEM's have detachable cables.

Carrying Pouch 4/5: Premium quality durable drawstring pouch providing a decent amount of protection but unfortunately at the same price point I admit that some Chi-Fi IEM's comes bundled with a hard-shell zip up case and some come with a clamshell case that offers better protection.

Price to Performance - Excellent - 5/5

Don't let the affordable price and the use of plastic fool you as Pioneer's in-house tuned and developed "Ultra Wide Spectrum" 9.7mm Dynamic Driver encased in its proprietary housing design punches well above its weight even beating out pricier Dynamic Driver counterparts like the Tipsy Dunmer^ costing around $119 USD.

Overall - 4.71/5

Surprisingly the SE-CH5T is tuned well and has fairly capable technicality and tonality for only $60*.

TLDR: Pioneer SE-CH5T - The $60 IEM Heavyweight Title Contender.

*NOTE: Price is in USD and the pricing is correct at the time and date of the review and the product featured in this review is not acquired complementary in exchange for a review but acquired with my own hard earned money back in early January 2020.

^NOTE: I have personally demoed the Tipsy Dunmer early January 2020 at Soundluck Shanghai.
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I just got SE-CH5T today, I will need to let them burn in. But here are initial thoughts.
I will compare them with Soundmagic E80.
I would call SE-CH5T sound more detailed and more fun in lows and highs, whereas Soundmagic E80 sounds neutral overall. SE-CH5T vocals do not sound as good, they seem kind of hidden, muffled, lacks clarity and liveliness.
On the other hand SE-CH5T bass is tight and has some satisfying depth to it. Soundstage is better and these earphones are just fun to listen to.

Ear tips also come into play, I will have to play with them to find what suits me best. Paid 37 Euros after discount, which, considering how good they sound, is a bargain.
I just wonder if SE-CH9T has better mids, but one could only wonder.
Well, surprise, I just found my 'lost' Soundmagic E80s :)
I ran additional comparisons against each other.
When I want to watch movies, listen to vocals, I am picking E80s. The mids are so wonderful and the sound is not fatiguing. If Soundmagic released something with better highs and just more punchy bass while retaining the same mids, it'd be hell of a product. Not that it's not amazing, I love it in its' own way. There is no perfect product :)
If I want something energizing, like listening to DnB tracks, trance or instrumentals, I am going for SE-CH5T. I really love their tight, energizing bass.


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