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Rhapsodio Solar

Rating:
4.83333/5,
  1. RRC-Tyr
    Rhapsodio Solars: Hidden Gem in the IEM World
    Written by RRC-Tyr
    Published May 11, 2016
    5.0/5,
    Pros - Bass depth and impact, Great mids, resolution and clarity
    Cons - Lack of accessories
    The Solar
    -10 balanced armature drivers
     
    Introduction
    To start, this is my first time writing a review so please bear with me and I would also like to put a disclaimer that everything written here is based on my opinion only and does not in any way undermine products from other manufacturers.
     
    13101326_10206454002734345_365942017_n.jpg
    (Credits to my friend for photo above)
     
    Information
    For the source, I am using an LG G4 running Onkyo HD Player through a MicroUSB OTG cable into the Chord Mojos. Music genre ranges from pop, rock and instrumentals most of which are from Japanese artists like Nana Mizuki, BACK-ON, SPHERE, fripSide and the like. Below will be a list of a few songs listened to for this review. Lastly, all music formats listened to are in FLAC. The Solars used for this review is the Universal version with Rhapsodio's very own "wind" tips (L). This was used as it provided the best fit out everything else. Though I didn't get a chance to take a photo for comparison, I would say the IEM is roughly, if not the same size as JH Audio Angie's. So if you have ears that are in the smaller side, I would suggest getting the custom version. Also, before anything
    Sammy also allows one to put a custom logo and designs/colors not in the website. Feel free to contact Sammy for requests, he is an approachable guy and really nice if I may add.
     
    Treble
    First off, this is the only element in the Solars that I would say does not 100% fit my preference. To start with, the treble is quite sparkly at least for my taste. Though not my cup of tea, it contributes to the overall fun sound signature of the Solar. Quoting what Sammy said 'after around 100-150 hours of burn in, it should lessen'. The sparkle can easily be heard on relatively high volumes especially on high pitched female vocals. This leads me to my next point, treble extension. The treble extends quite high in the Solars to the point that you think your ears will break but never does. If you're the type of person that likes a V-shaped sound signature, then I would 100% recommend the Solars.

    *Note: After roughly 80 hours of listening, I am happy to say that I have learned to love the sparkle in the treble, as a
    matter of a fact, I find that it actually enhances female vocals and contributes to the overall "fun" nature of the Solars*

     
    Mids
    One word, speechless. This is the only thing I can think of that can describe the mids of the Solars. The midrange is full, clear, and natural. I can't think of anything wrong with it at all. As I mainly listen
    to Japanese songs, the midrange is extremely important due to the songs being vocal heavy. The main issue I had coming from full sized headphones(HD650) is that the mids sounds veiled but for the Solars it doesn't sound veiled at all even with the amount of bass present. The mids are unique in the sense that it presents male and female vocals quite differently, males vocals have that slight warmth to it to portray that deep voice while still maintaining clarity. On the other hand for female, the amount of clarity and detail is simply breathtaking.It's like the perfect blend of treble,midrange and bass all in a single package, not one element tries to overshadow the other. I would not change anything which regards to the mids, simply amazing.
     
    Bass
    Before I start ranting on how much I love the bass of the Solars. I would just like to point out that I am a basshead and as such I love earphones that can produce that punchy bass but I am also quite picky when it comes to the quality of bass. Most people think that as long as it has that boomy sound, it has good bass but there is a difference between just boomy bass and good quality bass. And for me the Solar have ticked all the boxes for being a quality bass even exceeding my expectations. The bass of the Solars is fast, punchy and goes really deep. I would say that even if you're used to having little/no bass, you will appreciate what the Solars have to offer. The bass is punchy but in a controlled way, what I mean by control is that even though it extends quite deep for whatever reason the midbass is not muddy at all. The best part is that it doesn't make the vocals sound veiled at all either. I don't know how Sammy did it, but whatever he did it is just amazing.
     
    Soundstage
    Coming from full sized headphones, I would say that my standard for soundstage is a bit different mainly due to being used to the wide and surround like presentation. Taking this into consideration, I would say that the Solars comes up quite close, only lacking a bit of width and height compared to their heavier brothers. If I would use figures for comparison, headphones would present itself as half a circle where each of the instruments have a significant gap as to where they are being played almost like attending a concert with a huge stage. And like a concert, you need to pay a premium price
    to be able to listen closer. On the other hand, the Solar soundstage would be similar to listening in a bar, a bit narrower but the instruments are closer to each other and more in front of you. Though the depth is in my opinion, better than what full size can give. Lastly, the presentation is nice and airy with great resolution. All these things considered, I would say that the Solars is one of the best I've heard in a while in terms of soundstage/presentation.
     
    download_20151222_221635.jpg
    Final Remarks:
    Overall, I would say that the Solars is a great all-rounder if you happen to be in the market for one. Also, if you're the type that wants music to be presented in a realistic and fun manner then I would 100% recommend the Solars. It can definitely hold its own against other TOTL iems from other manufacturers. Considering also the price, one should definitely put the Solars up
    in the list of contenders. As I would say it is one of the best, if not the best bang for the buck IEM in its price range.
     
    Comparison
    These comparison are based on roughly only 2 hours of auditioning due to time constraints when I met with Sammy. So basically, initial impressions and comparison.
     
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    Rhapsodio&Rooth Hybrid Collaboration(MSRP unknown)
    First off I would like to thank sammy for giving me the chance to audition these iems. If I had to compare these IEMs, it's like the little brother of the Solars. Like how little brothers are in real life(at least as kids), they are livelier and more in your face type of IEMs. If the Solars are front going to midrow the rooth collab hybrid is on the front row period. Every aspect aside from soundstage is accentuated,
    treble is more sparkly, while bass hits hard but not as deep. For me, because the bass hits harder; it felt like the bass is not as fast and sometimes find it difficult to catch up to bass heavy fast paced songs. Also, because of this the sound is a bit muddier and sometimes midrange is slightly overshadowed. As I said earlier in this review, sparkly treble is not my cup of tea and as such the rooth collaboration hybrid is not for people that have similar tastes. Though this is the case, I would highly recommend the IEM to people that mainly listens to rock/pop and just wants to have a great midrange iem.
     
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    Rhapsodio Galaxy(MSRP $1600, comes with SG 2.98 as stock cable)
    This is an IEM that is still currently in development by sammy so these impressions/comparison will not be the final product but roughly 60%-70% of it. The Rhapsodio Galaxy is what I would say how a reference sounding IEM should sound like. If I have to give a comparison, it is literally an HD800 in IEM form. Treble extends really far when called for(even further than the Solars imo) with just the right amount of sparkle. Bass is there only if it's called for, and when it hits it's just the right amount(might not satisfy bassheads). By right amount, you will definitely hear the bass,but once the next note hits it's gone which is probably why I feel that the galaxy is heads above the Solars in terms of clarity and resolution. As a comparison, Solar bass can be felt but Galaxy is more analytical? Lastly  soundstage is similar to the Solars, like the Solars compared to full size headphones,the soundstage is relatively narrower and more compact with one another. Big words as this may be, I think this IEM is a HD800 in a smaller more portable casing sacrificing only some aspects of full sized headphones like comfort and soundstage width and height. Definitely a TOTL item like it's brother the Solars just catered for a different set of people.
     
    Upgrade Cables
     
    20160101_122448.jpg
    Rhapsodio Golden Litz Cable (roughly $650)
    This is the most expensive invoking cables that I have ever used from the day I started getting into audio. The cable just screams premium in all aspects(particularly color). Now does it sound as good as it looks. In my opinion, it does though imo it's catered for a different set of people. The most obvious thing when I change to these cables is clarity and resolution in the midrange and improves on what the Solars can already deliver with stock cables. Treble extension became even further with these cables to the point that it is ear piercing. This is where for me how the cables transformed the Solars into more reference sounding. As for bass, compared to the stock cable of the Solars it turned into something like the Rhapsodio Galaxy bass, just enough when called for. Soundstage became wider for sure and height is improved a little bit, small but good change. The cable for me is an attempt to retain all the great things about the Solars while trying to mix in little
    bits of how Galaxy and headphones sounds like.
     
    20160101_122703.jpg
    RSD Nylon Mark 1
    One word "reference", this is the very first thing that came to my mind when I listened using these cables. the transformation is just unreal for me it's like I was using a different IEM close to that of the Galaxy. It transformed the Solars into something opposite of my tastes. As a basshead,I felt that the bass became less and honestly almost non-existent for me. It's like when you're eating cake and you removed the icing which made the Solars sounded a bit dull for my taste. If you're the type of person that likes the treble and upper midrange then by all means this cable is a specialist in improving those two aspects. Don't get me wrong, it is a good cable just not for me. Honestly the one cable I spent the least time on.
     
    2.98 Silver Litz Cable
    Of all the cables mentioned, this is imo the best pair for the Solars. It made the Solars a bit warmer and improved the midrange quite a bit while lessening the sparkle in the treble of Solar. If you're a basshead and you think that the Solars are still lacking then you're in for a treat. These cables gives more authority to the Solar's bass almost like you made the Solars lift some weights. Bass impact and texture is improved and for me brought the drums closer to the vocals in terms of imaging which made it sound like you're in the front row. Mids became slightly more forward resulting in more
    in your face yet fun signature. The cable made the Solars sound fuller while still retaining the overall nature of the Solars.
     
    List of some songs used.
    1) Vitalization- Nana Mizuki
    2) Complication- ROOKiEZ is PUNK'D
    3) Imagination- SPYAIR
    4) Two souls- toward the truth- fripSide
    5) Gyakkou no Flugel- Takayama Minami & Nana Mizuki
    6) Brand New Smile- Takagaki Ayahi
    7) L.L.L- Myth&Roid
    8) The first ending- Myth&Roid
    9) Bokutachi wa Hitotsu no Hikari - Love Live
    10) Irresistible- Fall Out Boy
    11) Phoenix- Fall Out Boy
    12) Clock Strikes- One OK Rock
    1. View previous replies...
    2. H T T
      There is no way I can afford this IEM, but where did you purchase your music by Nana Mizuki? It is so hard to get JPOP in the US.
      H T T, May 16, 2016
    3. mahesh
      Very nice Review :)
      mahesh, May 17, 2016
    4. 0MoUsE0
      When I saw the "μ" on the IEM, I already know what the song list is going to look like. XD
      However, nice review, thanks
       
      0MoUsE0, May 22, 2016
  2. subguy812
    Solar...it's all about the balance
    Written by subguy812
    Published Dec 11, 2015
    5.0/5,
    Pros - Balanced overall sound signature; Solid sub bass; extended treble; very detailed
    Cons - Accessories
    Introduction:
    I do not consider myself an audiophile. I love music and I love good sound and that is why this is my hobby. I prefer to find the best portable setups available. I do not want to be tethered to a desk with an amp. I enjoy finding the best possible pairings I can, something I can enjoy anytime, anywhere. I don't read graphs or charts, when I listen to music my ears tell me what I like, not my eyes. If this hobby becomes work as opposed to my getaway I will find another hobby. I have had many iem's at all levels of price with a variety of driver types and number of drivers. One thing I have learned is price, or the number of drivers is not indicative of a pleasing sound signature. 
     
    Enter Rhapsodio Solar...http://www.rhapsodio.com/
     
    The Solar:
    -MRSP (Universal): $1450
    -10 balanced armature drivers (2 bass, 4 mid, 2 high and 2 tweeters)
     
    My quest started by reaching out to Sammy and discussing options. I will say that Sammy is a quick communicator. There are many design options and ultimately I gave the reigns to Sammy and told him to design the face plate & base combination that he liked, and he did. I must say it was a sexy choice.
     
    Sammy responded to my questions via mails quickly and then we switched to Hangouts so communication went smooth all the way... I love this guy Sammy!
     
    I have never seen such shipping speed from Hong Kong. I received my Solar two days after it was shipped. WOW!  [​IMG]
     
    Packaging/Contents:
    When the Solar arrived, it was in a postal envelope and inside was a plastic, latched, branded Rhapsodio box. I also ordered an additional cable which was included in a blue Rhapsodio drawstring bag. Six pair of eartips was included, three pair of Wind tips and three pair of Spinfit tips. The Wind tips have a wide bore and the Spinfit tips have a more narrow opening. There is an included leather strap to help keep the cable wound. Nice touches, but I still felt there was no choirs of angels singing once I saw the opened the package. I am not sure I could offer any suggestions but these are TOTL iems and packaging and accessories could create more of a wow factor.
     
     
    IMG_20151205_141556.jpg
     
     
    IMG_20151205_141658.jpg
     
     
    IMG_20151205_141720.jpg
     
     
    IMG_20151205_141935.jpg
                 WIND TIPS(WIDE BORE) & SPINFITS
     
     
    Design & Build Quality:
    Sammy chose a Wood faceplate with smoke transparent bases for my universal fit Solars. I think it a classy and sexy design. Actually it is the same design I have in another iem, the Heir 8.0 universal.
     
     
    IMG_20151205_141755.jpg
          SOLAR WITH STOCK PANDORA SPC CABLE
     
    The build quality is great. I examined the Solar for any flaws and I could not find any, which is impressive coming from a small custom iem boutique in Hong Kong. The cables as well are built to last with quality in mind, you could almost rock climb with these cables. The nozzles have waxguards installed.
     
    IMG_20151205_141813.jpg
                   RSD SILVER LITZ 4-BRAID CABLE
     
     
    IMG_20151205_142555.jpg
          SOLAR DESIGN WOOD WITH SMOKY BASE
     
     

                   SOLAR IN ALL OF IT'S SEXINESS
     
     

                     IT'S ALL ABOUT THE DRIVERS
     
     
    Comfort:
    The Solars are slightly bigger than my Heir 8.0 universals. I would say the Heir is the most comfortable of the two, however the Solar is not uncomfortable. The Solar is larger but I do not fight with comfort issues as I have with the JH Angie or Layla. The Wind tips are comfortable as well as the Spinfit. I also use the JVC Spiral Dot tips(Wide Bore).The JVC seal well but provide the least comfortable fit. The isolation is good and when music is playing it covers up for many external noises.
     
     
    IMG_20151211_204820.jpg
     
     

     
     

     
     
    Sources:
    I used a Nexus 6p streaming Tidal and an AK120ii for testing and review purposes. The Solar are driven easily by both of these sources.
     
    Sound:
    For review purpose, I used the largest Wind tips and large JVC Spiral Dot tips. The JVC sealed the best and the Wind tips are the most comfortable, so you can choose your poison, however I will say that it is very important to use a wide bore tip to achieve the soundstage that the Solar is capable of achieving. I tried a deep insertion and shallow, I found a deep insertion offered the best sound quality.
     
    Upon first listen I was like meh, okay these sound a bit thin. I experimented with tips and listened to what provided the best seal. After about an hour the smile started to wash over my face and the smile hasn't left yet, in fact it has become Cheshire cat like after around 25 hours of listening time. These iem's have really started to open up. I am not going to start a debate about burn-in. Believe it or not, these are improving and Sammy said they will be at their peak in 200 hours.
     
     I look for a balanced sound with an emphasis on details and tone of instruments. I actually prefer an IEM that is slightly colored, a fun, lively, detailed sound is my favorite signature, something very musical. That said, the Solar confidently checks all of those boxes. The level of detail and clarity combined with the sub bass and mid bass layering, a balanced mid range with sparkly, lively treble and no bleed over into the various ranges from any other range. HOLY SMOKES this is one balanced TOTL iem. Balance, balance, balance.
     
    Bass:
    The bass on Solar is deep in the sub levels and detailed and layered in the mid bass range. One of the finest blends I have heard. The iem has a sound signature that is colored but again, never bleeds into the other ranges. The tone of the bass in the mid bass range is awesome, clear and detailed. As a comparison the Angie could have the same level of bass if you cranked the inline bass control above 1:00. The Solar has more detail in the bass as compared to the Angie. The Heir 8.0 has more of a bass presence throughout the signature, however the quality is not on par with the Solar. Is this a basshead iem? I would say it would please the basshead. As I have said I prefer a slightly colored signature and the bass in the Solar is very satisfying, although I don't consider myself a true basshead.
     
    Midrange:
    The mids of Solar are crisp, clear and incredibly detailed. The tone of female vocals shine and male vocal sound strong. The mids are not in the least veiled and could be considered some of the most blended and balanced I have ever heard in an iem. The soundstage is wide and when listening to some Radiohead the imaging was providing me with a spatial eargasm. There was some 3D stuff going on there. 
     
    Treble:
    The treble of the Solar is ever present. At no time is it strident or sibilant. It is sparkly and this helps to create the incredible soundstage that the Solar proudly shows. Overall the treble produces a sparkly life to these iem's in contrast to the opposite bass spectrum that thumps when called upon the balance between all ranges continues to impress.
     
     
    Presentation:
    The Solar presents itself in an airiness with nice resolution. It would be considered a slight V shape, however the mids do not sound distant. The entire frequency spectrum is represented and the speed is never thick of lagging throughout the entire signature providing a fine iem. The tuning is superb and the it is well engineered.
     
     
    Summary:
    I have around 25 hours already of listening time already. After the initial hour the Solar really started to open up. They have a very balanced sound, very musical and fun. That is not to say that they are not true to representing the sound and tone of instruments, believe me the sound is quite realistic. The sub bass rumbles as well the bass is clear and defined in the lower mids. There is no bleed over in the mids to muddy the sound. The mids offer a great deal of clarity and are very detailed while the treble is a little forward but not harsh.

    I have listened to many genres of music with them. From jazz, blues, classic rock, alternative, classical and finally some edm. Radiohead, which generally to me don't represent well in headphones, and the spatial feel was terrific. The imaging was providing me a wild ride. I did receive a 3d sense to this.

    Wide bore tips create a bigger soundstage and the soundstage can be quite wide at times. With some high quality Jazz FLAC files, ie... Jazz at the Pawnshop the details and crispness made me feel I was in the audience, front and center.

    Crunching guitar sounds from AC/DC are awesome. Female vocals, such as Sade or Norah Jones sound great as well, and this surprised me a little.

    Overall a very balanced, detailed presentation. The little "enhancements" and peaks in parts of the spectrum are all in the correct spots. 

    On a final note...I have only dedicated my review time to the stock SPC cable. For me switching from iem to different iem confuses my thoughts and I never truly get to appreciate or loathe a specific iem. Upon completion of this review I will listen to the SIlver Litz and include my thoughts. The pairing of the SPC cable has never made me want for more.

     
    These are TOTL iem's period. Once you reach this level it is not a matter of "better", it is a matter of finding a sound signature which satisfies and agrees with you.This iem checks all of the boxes with a balanced confidence not heard in many other iem's.
     
    A must have!!!!
     
     
     
    1. View previous replies...
    2. vhsownsbeta
      Great review, much aligned with my own impressions. Momentum is building! Solar are astounding monitors.
      vhsownsbeta, Dec 12, 2015
    3. subguy812
      Thanks. It's one of the few pieces of gear that most opinions align. It is really rare almost everyone is hearing the same thing.
      subguy812, Dec 12, 2015
    4. Kerouac
      Superb written review and some very nice pics to!
      It's all about the drivers and the tuning of these I guess...once you've heard the Solar, I think it's almost impossible not to fall in love with it :)
      Kerouac, Dec 12, 2015
  3. karanehir35
    The Fantastic Sound
    Written by karanehir35
    Published Oct 21, 2018
    4.5/5,
    Pros - Bass Quality
    Fullness and Sweet Mids
    Detailed but Relaxing Treble
    Cons - The Housing is a bit large
    Soundstage is not very wide
    Mids missing some transparency
    Rhapsodio Solar Review

    Rhapsodio is a Hong Kong based company and the owner is Sammy.

    The Solar is a IEM with 10 Balanced armature driver units, 4 passive crossover and 3 main acoustic pipes. I have tested the Solar with the 2.98G/ 8 braided upgraded cable that bring this IEM to a different level especially the mids and detail and have also used the Noble K10U stock cable. I want advise to those who want buy the Solar, that they should get this special cable.


    MATERIAL QULITY

    The Solar is in terms of size bigger than the Noble K10 and a bit smaller than the Rosie IEM. It has a custom like shell and is sitting comfortable in my ears and I lıke the fit very much. Maybe people who have smaller ears will have problems with the fit.
    DSC_0333.JPG


    The Solar comes with an acrylic housing and build quality of this housing is solid and they are no imperfections such as openings etc. The quality of the housing is perfect.
    images (13).jpeg

    The 2 pin connectors on the housing are not too tight like on the K10 and lose like on other IEMs. It is easy to put in and out the cable that makes a cable swapping not an issue.

    The cable is very robust and the braiding of this 8 core braided cable is tight and they are no big gaps.



    We can say in short that the Solar has a build quality that is worth its price. Don’t mind that the Solar looks a bit rough, it is a very esthetic IEM.



    SOUND QUALITY

    The Solar has a slightly and wide angled V shaped sound character and is an IEM that sounds on the warmer side. Yes, it is warm but not is not as dark like the Heir 5.

    The Solar sounds vivid and detailed, thanks to the slightly bright treble factor
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    Lows

    The Solar has a strong and deep lower frequency presentation. This is the area where the Solar is surpassing its price with its detail. I can say that the Solar is in this regarding better than other totl IEMs (for example K10/Adel U12 etc.). The lows have also not the sort of sub-bass presentation that comes from only one point. The Solar is transmitting the lows with good separating to the ears. I have also the opinion that the Solar IEM has a bass presentation that is close to real and natural sound.

    The mid-bass comes is soft with body to my ears. The mid-bass is not compressing the stage except some songs with high instrument density. The Solar has not a midbass focused bass presentation like the Noble K10 and is more sub-bass focused that makes it very pleasant to listen. The bass speed in genres like metal music is above average due to the bass extensions that is a bit higher than normal. But I have had no issues with many songs with exception of some critical listening’s. The Solar is in short an IEM with strong, tight and highly detailed lows.






    Mids

    Solar is a IEM with V shaped character that makes the mids a bit recessed. The sound is with the stock cable a bit recessed but is surprisingly upfront with the 8 core braided upgrade cable. The mids still a bit more recessed than those of the K10’s but the fact that the upgrade cable brings the mids upfront makes it very pleasant.

    The Solar’s mid area has a presentation where instruments are a little bit behind the vocals. The vocals are warm, bodied and musical. People who like listen to vocals will like this. The instrument separation of the Solar is pretty good due to the wide and deep stage. They are only some problems with songs that have a high instrument density, but the general performance is quite successful. My only complaint to the mids is the slightly veiled presentation in this region. I would only wish that the 8 core cable could add more clearness and transparency to the sound that is otherwise perfect, with exception in some songs that I use for critical listening.

    In shorts, there is missing only some clearness/transparency in the mids area and it would be very nice if they could add some brightness like in the treble area. His could make the Solar even better than the Fitear tg334. The resolution in this area is good enough for this price level.

    The instrument timber in the lower regions is on a high level with the Solar that makes it suitable with jazz to ethnic music. The Solar IEM is showing a good separation between instruments and the vocals. Yes, it has a warm tonality in this area but that doesn’t mean that there is too much air with warm character between instruments. The air between instruments is filled with a neutral air that is not warm and makes the general separation successful.
    939f4a45a9a084c7820b21a2d1ae98ec.jpg

    Trebles

    The brightness, which is more present in the treble area than in the lower frequency’s and mids is avoiding the Solar to be classified as a warm and dark IEM and makes it to a member of detailed and vivid sounding IEMs. The treble has a slightly bright and prominent tonality. The only downside in the treble area is the extensions that does not extend enough forward. Instruments such as cymbals have good definition but the extensions are a bit too short in certain genres.

    I do like the transition between the upper mids because of the soft and controlled presentation. The treble is not annoying in high notes of pianos, in the opposite it is sounding quite soft. Which I like too, about the Solar’s treble is the presentation of the side flute that doesn’t sounded like a horn. Especially the separation of instruments in classical genres such as Concerto’s and Quartets gave me some hours of pleasant listening. The Solar is in my opinion a rarely to found IEM, because of its success in both jazz/classical and pop/electronic music genres. The speed of Solar’s treble is good enough for some genres such as heavy metal or trash metal. But at times it may not be enough for some extreme fast metal songs.


    In short, many people will enjoy the Solar’s sub-frequency power, wide/deep stage, instrument separation, silent & black background, full bodied & musical mids and vivid treble presentation.




    Comparison with the Noble K10

    The Solar and K10 are successful in the lower frequencies such as mid-bass and the sub-bass depth. The main focus of the K10 is the mid-bass, but I found the Solar mores successful in both sub- and mid-bass regions, because it has the ability to make cleaner and more powerful hits and has also the better lower frequency resolution.

    The K10 has a mids that are more upfront and better resolution than the Solar. But the vocal performance is a bit subjective, because I found the K10 more successful with female and the Solar with male vocals, that’s because the Solar sounds fuller and has a more natural timber. If Solar have had more transparency and brightness in the mids, it could maybe more successful than K10.

    The upper midrange of the K10'un is more pronounced than Solar. Bu the treble is equal in terms of quality. The treble of the Solar and the K10 does not extend enough forward and here is a quick decay while listening to instruments like bells, cymbals. The K10 has some issues with songs where you can find a high density of instruments, because it was hard to define instruments for example a side flute in a song. It was easier to define this side flute with the Solar due to the wider stage, which makes it more successful in this area. The general speed of this IEM’s with genres like for example trash metal is not the best I have heard before, but I can say that I found the K10 faster and more successful in such genres.

    The Solar is superior to the K10 in terms of stage width, that has not a very wide soundstage I found the two IEMs at satisfactory levels in terms of soundstage depth.
    The Solar is in general more successful in relation of instruments separation and the K10 in terms of definition. In the symphonic music recordings, where treble instruments and mid instruments were used together, the Solar’s mid-bass fogged out, while the K10 have had mixing issues and loosed the control in the upper midrange. I can say that the Solar was more successful in this records than the K10, due to its larger soundstage and the better/correct instrument positioning.
    939f4a45a9a084c7820b21a2d1ae98ec.jpg
      mrhero, chaturanga and Moonstar like this.
  4. rookie2009
    Rhapsodio Solar - A Gem Among Stones
    Written by rookie2009
    Published Dec 17, 2015
    5.0/5,
    Pros - Nice full sound, large soundstage, excellent detail without causing fatigue..
    Cons - Packaging could be more premium, could include more accessories...

    Disclaimer: First attempt at a review so be nice [​IMG], but more importantly my impressions are subjective,each person can often have varying opinions on monitors,different strokes for different folks etc..
     
    Introduction:
    Hailing from a small studio from Hong Kong under the tutelage of Chun Yin Mak Mak, or better known to us head-fiers as Sammy are Rhapsodio with their 10 driver balanced armature in ear monitor called “Solar”. They are a small team and have been in existence since 2012, but are making giant strides in the competitive world of in ear monitor manufacturers. Sammy is very extensive in his research and driver configurations and this can be seen in the Rhapsodio product range which caters from single dynamic driver in ear monitors, to 6 driver in ear monitors to the aforementioned Solar which is a 10 driver.
     
    However, while normally most companies offer a standard copper stock cable with their monitors, Rhapsodio are unique in that they also offer super high quality upgrade cables to complement their range of monitors.I can say from my correspondence with Sammy during my purchase that he is very helpful throughout the entire process, which I appreciated as personally speaking, customer service is as important as the product you receive.
     
    Build Quality and Packaging:
    The Solar arrived in a Rhapsodio branded Pelican style hard case which offers adequate protection. In this case of course are the Solar themselves in all their glory along with an impressive looking cable connected to them. What really impressed me was the build quality of the monitors themselves, to me they look beautiful with their 24k gold nuggets fused together with the black shell to form something that will rival the most aesthetic monitors available in the market today. They utilize the traditional 2 pin connection as used in ciem’s, which I personally prefer to mmcx connections as I feel they are more secure.
     
    IMG_20151217_125907.jpg
     
    In addition to that, the stock cable is perhaps the most impressive I have ever received with a monitor and I have owned plenty ranging from companies such as Noble Audio, Heir Audio, and JH Audio. The 3.5mm jack is of high quality with adequate strain relief, while the actual cable is constructed of 5N silver plated OCC copper. We then have a metal Y-split and a plastic slider suitable for chin locking. The ear guides on the cable utilize memory wire which is hidden from view by some black shielding. Microphonics are non-existent with this cable which is another positive
    .
    We also receive a variety of ear tips to choose from, the stock tips from Rhapsodio which I believe are called “Wind” tips and also the ever growing in popularity Spinfit ear tips. The Spinfit provided are the Taiwan version which are a touch more stiff/rigid than the Japanese Sarounbi version which are very flexible.
     
    I would describe the shells of the Solar as the “universal custom” type in comparison to some of the more generic shapes you see available. I think Rhapsodio have really nailed this fit wise and somehow managed to keep the size to a minimum to ensure it does not protrude from the ear like a Frankenstein bolt (yes JH Audio, I’m looking at you [​IMG]). It’s a really snug fit with pretty good isolation once you use an adequate tip, and if you are like me you will amassed several brands of ear tips at this stage to aid you when using universals. I would recommend people have a look at the JVC Spiral Dots, Sony Hybrid, or Ultimate Ears tips if the provided tips from Rhapsodio do not agree with you.
     
    IMG_20151217_125119.jpg
     
    IMG_20151217_125200.jpg
     
     
    Sound:
     
    For this evaluation I will be using the Solar from a Chord Hugo with my Sony NWZX2 as a source and a 7n crystal copper interconnect.
     
    IMG_20151217_130704.jpg
     
    IMG_20151217_130806.jpg
     
     
    Bass:
    If I were to describe the bass of the Solar, it would have to be punchy. By no means do I consider myself a basshead but at the same time a monitor must have adequate response in this department. The Solar has plentiful bass, digs deep when the recording you are listening to requires it to, thus making it an enjoyable experience with excellent transient attack and fast note decay. There is no bleed from the bass into the midrange either which can be the case with some monitors and is to the detriment of the performance of the midrange. To my ears the bass performs very well across all genres, bravo.
     
    Midrange:
    I consider the Solar to be a full sounding monitor with a balanced sounding signature, with the midrange perhaps being pushed back by the smallest of margins but not to the extent that I would consider this even close a U or V-shaped monitor. The Heir 8.0 is one of the richest sounding monitors I have owned previously. From memory the Solar is not quite as rich or lush as something like that, but simply put this is a superior tuned monitor in comparison to the midrange on the 8.0.
     
    Personally I have a diverse taste in music but mostly I listen to hard rock or metal (Megadeth, Iron Maiden etc) and the Solar brings a fullness to guitars which make listening to these particular genres really fun. To me, there are no obvious peaks or dips in the midrange, just a smooth enjoyable experience without congestion in this range.
     
    Treble:
    I would describe the treble of the Solar as sweet, but at the same time it somehow manages to retain a great amount of detail without it becoming piercing or harsh. There is absolutely no sibilance either which can often be an issue for me at times with some monitors (often this can be due to poorly mastered recordings too). If I were to compare Solar to something like the AKG K3003,the Solar is undoubtedly a lot less fatiguing to my ear, often with the K3003 I might have to take a break if I was listening for a couple of hours, but that may be down to the Knowles 30017 speaker it uses which is very detail orientated. My point is that you can listen to the Solar for extended listening sessions yet somehow it keeps all that detail without being fatiguing which is really a great achievement by Rhapsodio here.
     
    IMG_20151217_125945.jpg
     
    Soundstage:
    In terms of soundstage to date, the most impressive I’ve heard was the JH Audio Roxanne Universal, but the Solar is certainly not far off it providing great width and depth but ultimately perhaps not to the same level of the Roxanne,however it certainly bests my Sennheiser IE800 or AKG K3003 . Imaging on the Solar is top class, some of the most impressive I have experienced to date with great separation, you could lay back and pinpoint each instrument on stage such is the quality, overall a very coherent experience.
     
    Summary:
    If you are seeking a top of the line in ear monitor that does everything very well, then the Rhapsodio Solar may be the one for you. The full presentation and large soundstage performs amazingly well across all genres. Prior to receiving the Solar my favourite monitor was the JH Audio Roxanne which comes with a slightly coloured presentation as JH Audio tend to have their own house sound. Based on sound quality and ergonomics, it seems I may have a new favourite in ear monitor on my hands.
     
    I would have no hesitation in recommending the Rhapsodio Solar to other head-fiers,it certainly warrants its place alongside other top of the line iems from rival companies and I look forward to seeing what Rhapsodio produce in the future [​IMG].
     
    Price: $1350
     
    Links:
    http://www.rhapsodio.com
    https://www.facebook.com/rhapsodiohk
     
    Specifications:
    ·         4-way passive crossover design

    ·         10 balanced armature drivers (2 tweeters, 2 high, 4 mid, 2 bass)

    ·         Frequency response: 20 ~ 20,000 Hz

    ·         Impedance: 26ohm

    ·         1 year international warranty

    ·         Bundles with 5N Silver Plated OCC Copper Cable

      proedros, Kerouac and flinkenick like this.
    1. View previous replies...
    2. Ivabign
      Excellent review - just so hard to read with my Solar 40 miles (but 2 days) away from me - I'm glad that you enjoy them. Can't wait to join the club.
      Ivabign, Dec 20, 2015
    3. rookie2009
      Thanks Reggie :) One thing for sure is that it will make a nice Christmas gift for yourself!! Hope you enjoy it!
      rookie2009, Dec 20, 2015
    4. proedros
      great review and the K3003 comparison was very helpful indeed
       
      thumbs up
      proedros, Jan 27, 2016
  5. Metalboy
    Rhapsodio Solar
    Written by Metalboy
    Published Jan 11, 2015
    5.0/5,
    Pros - Extreme clarity, imaging yet very musical sounding.
    Cons - Lack of accessories
    This is a small review of the 10 driver Rhapsodio ciem. 
     
    Rhapsodio 10 Driver
    10 balanced armatures/5-Way
     
    Build Quality 85/100
     
    Some imperfections like bubbles but overall great build quality. 
     
    Bass 97/100
     
    Very fast, highly detailed. Can keep up with anything. Its boosted a little bit above neutral but overall this is a very neutral ciem. The bass is very similar to NT6 pros bass but a little less impact-full subbass and a tiny bit more midbass.
     
    Mids 100/100
     
    Best mids I have ever heard. Very neutral, extreme clarity. No other ciem/headphones can compete with these in my opinion that I have heard. The imaging and instrument separation is amazing. 
     
    Treble 99/100
     
    The highs on the 10Ba are very extended and has amazing clarity with a bit of a smooth sound. Cymbals sound very natural. Only one Ciem that I have heard beats these in this department. 
     
    Soundstage 9,5/10
    With 8,5/10
    Depth 10/10
     
    They have a very deep soundstage with lots layers and with the best instrument separation I have ever heard.
     
    Summary
    Highly recommended if you look for a ciem with a neutral sound. The best ciem/iem I have ever heard. 
     
    Here is what my other ciems would score 
     
    JH Audio Roxanne (reshelled by Perfect Seal labs)
     
    Build Quality 85/100
    Bass 96/100
    Mids 97/100
    Treble 87/100
    Soundstage 9,5
    With 9,5
    Depth 9/10
     
    NT6 Pro (don´t have these anymore)
     
     
    Build Quality 90/100
    Bass 97/100
    Mids 95/100
    Treble 98/100
    Soundstage 9/10
    With 9/10
    Depth 8,5/10
     
    Kumitate Lab Hybrid 
     
    Build Quality 100/100
    Bass 86/100
    Mids 84/100
    Treble 80/100
     
    Soundstage 8/10
    With 8,5/10
    Depth 8/10
     
    Earsonics EM32
     
    Build Quality: 75/100
    Bass 90/100
    Mids 96/100
    Treble 98/100
     
    Soundstage 9,5/10
    With 8,5
    Depth 10/10 
     
    Wan Xuan I9Pro
     
    Build Quality 78/100
    Bass 65/100
    Mids 62/100
    Treble 42/100
     
    Soundstage 8/10
    With 8/10
    Depth 8/10
     
    Spiral Ear SE5 (reshelled by Custom art)
     
    Build Quality 90/100
    Bass 96/100
    Mids 94/100
    Treble 100/100
    Soundstage 9,5/10
    With (varies a bit from song to song) 8~9
    Depth 10/10
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
      AmberOzL likes this.
    1. View previous replies...
    2. cheflatte
      Where did you purchase these? Thanks
      cheflatte, Jan 11, 2015
    3. Metalboy
      Directly from rhapsodio
      Metalboy, Jan 12, 2015
    4. DimitriTrush
      How do this compare to Noble Audio Kaiser 10.
      Both are 10 BA correct. Price wise is almost same as far as I understand..
      DimitriTrush, Jun 8, 2015