TRI Audio i4


500+ Head-Fier
TRI I4 Review
Pros: Rich, mature bass, good but not forward mids, and detailed highs. Tuning is analogue sound with deliciously tube amp tinge.
Cons: The stock cable and stock tips could be better.
TRI I4 Review


I believe it is my duty to disclose to readers whether the item I am reviewing is bought, loaned or given to me to review. Where I say nothing relating to whether or not the item is a review unit, it is because I paid for the item which I am reviewing.
In the case of the I4, I was given a review unit (at a nominal price) by TRI on the understanding that I would be free to give my honest opinion of the I4.

All opinions are my own with no influence as I avoid reading other reviews of the same item before I have written my review. I make an effort to ensure that I give the reader factual information.

The TRI I4 is the first In Ear Monitor (IEM) made under the brand name, TRI, a sub-brand of the KBEAR brand. The later models are the TRI I3, the TRI Starlight and the TRI Starsea.

As with all TRI IEMs, thus far, the I4 is a hybrid, a two-driver hybrid to be precise with one Knowles Balanced Armature (BA) driver and a Composite Dynamic Driver (DD). The price is currently hovering at the 70 USD mark.

Form, Fit and Function
The TI I4 comes with a black two strand cable which has angled MMCX on one end and on the other end the I4 cable has an angled 3.5 singled ended plug. They also come with a velvety pouch, and a selection of tips. There are two colour variants for the heart-shaped outer aluminium casing of the IEM, a mid metallic blue and a bronze/brown colour, which was my choice. The casing is small in size, feels, they come with two pin-hole vents and a TRI logo which appears to have been laid on the shells. They sound marble-like just as the TRI I3s do when the ear pieces hit each other, I love the sound of marbles, but I try to avoid my precious IEMs getting damaged in any way I can, so it is a rare event. They are much smaller than the I3s with the size more olive-like than “ear potatoes” size but the similarity in feel between the I4 and the I3 is clearly noticeable but the similarities are not limited to look and feel.

For me, and I would imagine for most, the small shells fit incredibly well with the effect that the isolation is good. Despite one vent being placed directly underneath (when fitted) each ear piece, I heard very little sound intrusion either with my music playing, I heard a bit of sound from outside with the sound off but it is quite good, probably cutting out 70% to 75% of external sound, obviously much more with music playing. I cannot comment on how they fare in the wind.

My setup for this review
I paired them with Samsung galaxy note 10 plus and Fiio M11, as my source, and for amplification variably, a Samsung dongle, Fiio BTR5 and the Littlebear B4X "pseudo tube" dac/amp, mostly balanced 2.5mm on high gain. I also used the Fiio music player app, but primarily the PowerAmp v.3 music player app plus YouTube music app, Amazon, Idagio (for classical music) and Soundcloud streaming app.

My test variation from stock
I initially used the stock cable and tips but I felt I could get more out of the TRI I4, so I opted to use the cable from the Tin Audio, T2 plus and the Misodiko silicone sheathed foam tips. My view is that if TRI had introduced the I4 today, they would not have chosen the stock cable.

I have to say at this point that I3s are so very easy to drive, and although as stated above, I did some cable and tip rolling, I did not feel the need to listen at high volume.

The sound
In short if you do not want to read the whole review: The I4s are very good baby I3s, with an analogue like the I3s. Unlike the I3s the I4s have tube-like sound. Quite detailed in highs, mids and bass. The similarity in the analogue sound signature between the I4s and the I3s is noticeable, especially in that mature bass, so well implemented. The differences are that the I4 laced across all frequencies with a “sprightly tone”, which sounds similar to the distortion (but not discordant distortion) a tube amp adds to music. These are clearly unique despite their similarity with the I3s. Another stand out feature for me is the imaging and stage at this price.

To understand the tuning of the bass, think of the bass of I3s laced with a fizzy tube sound. In essence for me the I4s bass is big bass, rich and full, done right. The mid-bass tuning is measured with a healthy dose of sub-bass without loss of detail. For me even though the bass is fast, it does not have the feel of fast bass which sounds thin and lack the fullness or body you would want, for example, in a good orchestral piece or other instrumental rendition. When I first heard the I4s I immediately recognised the pedigree the I3s inherited. This is rich, mature bass, that hits hard when required to but does not seek to knock you over with every not….just mature! Unlike the Starlights and Starseas, the bass bias is unapologetically obvious and ever-present, this makes them a fun set.

Henrik Freischlader - I Loved Another Woman:
Listening to this track shows the dynamic range of these IEMs. Whilst you get a good and powerful bass impact, it is just so well rounded bass, so that you do not feel assaulted. These IEMs give you such a good dynamic range, that you hear as much detail in the bass at the same time you hear details in the triangle and the guitar high notes, all at the same time and distinctly audible.

You also get great stage and imaging, and instrument separation which puts these IEMs way beyond their price range.

Kyama - Long After You Are Gone:
The BA delivers mid treble beautifully, although not forward, you get a good amount of the emphasis to enjoy vocals, guitars, piano and saxophones with feeling you have to alter the volume or even use the equaliser to alter any track due to recessed mids. Yes, in comparison to the I3s, the mids are not as lush, but the BA mids in the I4s stand proudly on their own and give me plenty of joy.

Nicolas Cole - Snap:
The track starts with a smooth piece which is effectively the refrain. Your ears are then massaged by a saxophone gently coming all calmly underpinned by a steady and drum rhythm and sprinkling of high hats , cymbals and other percussive instruments. The I4s bubbly spriteliness just handles this track so beautifully, as it does many tracks.

Earl Klugh - Calypso Getaway:
Ed Sheeran - Andrea Bocelli - Perfect Symphony:
High Treble
You would have thought like its sibling, the I3s, the I4s would hold back on the highs but although, not focused on the highs, it does not hold anything back. Of course the tuning does not go as far as to make these V shaped. This is definitely U-shaped and gives you such clarity, nothing at all is lost. What sets these apart is the I4s keep that bubbly laced tones right through the frequencies, so you get a certain additional sparkle at the top

Tim Bowman - Soul Dreams:
This track gives us a further example of the dynamic range of the I4s. This track holds a steady bass rhythm as its backbone, and then the instruments are a huge range giving you a great sensation. The I4s again take the full range in their stride and the highs are so fulfilling, not too high yet missing nothing at all. Good pop and fizz, crackle and tingle.

Frederic Chopin - Nocturne in E-Flat Major, Op. 9, No.2:
The I4s do not have the planar mids of the I3s, nor do they have the ESTs the Starlights have or the new TRI BA found in the Starseas. Nonetheless, do not let the £50 or $68 price fol you. The tuning is so well done, that you hear details in the treble that go well beyond the price range, while delivering mature bass, full and detailed. The dynamics are superb and so is the stage, as one headfier said, it is almost holographic. All the time infusing the fizz of a tube amplifier in your ears.

Another fellow headfier said to me, he can imagine, “a little old man” sitting somewhere in the TRI offices, carefully poring and pondering over every detail of the tuning of TRI IEMs. Apologies, if you are that person (the tuner of TRI IEMs) and you are neither male nor old. This just denotes an experienced, patient and efficient person doing a job with dedication. I am sure for the headfier (who said that) made his statement as an indication of our appreciation of your work. To come up with four superbly tuned IEMs, each with distinction in what they do, yet uniquely differ from each other, is remarkable and worthy of praise indeed.

Enjoy your music!

£51.77 21%OFF | TRI I4 1BA+1DD Hybrid in Ear Earphone Running Sport Technology HIFI earplug with 3.5mm MMCX Earbud

Also available on Amazon.
Love your review Chris. Appreciate the way you use language to describe the TRi i4 with a much more nuanced rich narrative.


New Head-Fier
TRI I4 Review
Pros: Knowles ba shines, bio dd is above avg quality
Cons: Stock cable and tips don’t bring out the best performance.
Tri i4 Review 🤝👾🎧

Knowles ba shines, Bio composite dd is a step up from other dd

V-shaped signature with thick bass, good clarity and a treble sparkle

Bass extends deep with good slam and medium texture

Soundstage has good depth and height

Smooth midrange slightly lacking body

with good imaging and bright detailed treble

Sub bass goes way up with inner vent blocked by ear

Treble that just manages to avoid siblances or harshness

Awesome build quality and shell

Didn’t love the cable and preferred after market tips

Occ copper cable improves iem in a pleasant way

Recommend in this price range , better than the excellent kb04


100+ Head-Fier
Pros: Good Detail retrieval
Solid separation and sound quality
Great accessories and build quality
Cons: A tad bass light
Recessed midrange

The Tri i4 is Tri audio's freshman effort into the audio scene, and boy are they trying to make a statement. From impressive accessories and build quality to official Knowles drivers, the company is really looking to go all out. This iem features a single Knowles BA driver, and a 10mm Biocellulose dynamic driver with an all metal shell and mmcx removable cable connectors.

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First, let's talk about the accessories. Tri Audio features impressive packaging and accessories for its price tag. The box looks and feels much more premium than offerings from TRN and KZ, and includes a small suede-esque carrying pouch, two different sets of silicone tips (each with small, medium, and large sizings), and a pair of foam tips. Tri really made an effort to feel more upscale, and it definitely works. You wouldn't expect packaging like this for what you're paying.


Build Quality:

The good continues here with the build quality. The full metal housing for the iem makes it feel hefty and durable, but not so much that it causes any discomfort. I got my pair in blue, and it looks absolutely stunning in real life. The fit and finish on the shell is pretty much flawless on my pair, and you really get the sense that a lot of care was put into making these feel like they were premium.


Fit and Comfort:

For my ears, the fit and comfort was superb. I could get good insertion depth and though the iems feel hefty and quality, there was no apparent strain on my ears from my long listening sessions with it. Of course the fit is always subjective but I think Tri went with a very safe universal mold, and I believe it should fit most people's ears. I found that the isolation was pretty good, even in loud environments such as coffee shops.

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Sound Quality:

Bass: The bass here is pretty well extended, clear and fast. It doesn't intrude into the midrange and doesn't overpower the rest of sound signature. However, I did find the bass to be a bit anemic so if you're a bass head, you should probably steer clear of this iem. I will say that the bass it does have is quality. While I would've liked more bass, it isn't a deal breaker and makes for a cleaner sound signature overall in my opinion.

Mids: I have my biggest gripe with the mids. They feel a little too recessed for my liking. Though the mid presence isn't to my liking, there is plenty of detail and clarity. I reckon most people won't have as big of an issue than I do with it though, and though more mid presence would've definitely tickled my fancy more, I don't find it to be too egregious as to ruin the whole musical experience that these iem's provide.

Highs: The highs are well extended with plenty of air and space. Again, the highs are clean and detailed. I'm starting to sound like a broken record but there's a common theme with these earphones. The overall imaging and soundstage of these iems are a little compressed and closed in, but it doesn't feel congested or too in your face. The image does seem farther away with a more holographic feel to it.

Overall: I would describe the sound signature as polite, clean, fast, and slightly V-shaped. Truly an interesting combination for an iem, especially for a company's first rodeo with in ears.


If you're looking for a clean, fast, and more relaxed sound signature, the Tri i4 might be for you. With excellent accessories, build quality, and a unique sound signature not seen in most iems in this price range, the Tri i4 is definitely worth the price tag. It's a fantastic first effort from company Tri Audio. I will say that there is definitely room for improvement in tuning for the next offering from Tri Audio, though I like the direction the company is moving. This is definitely a company to keep your eyes on!

Johnny Mac

New Head-Fier
Pros: Great for long time use, great accessory set and stock cable, clean midrange.
Cons: Soft treble, overall sound might be too bland for some.
A good introduction creates a stable and sometimes a great ending, while others are caught up and are invested with making sure that their brand barges into the audiophile scene with a good introduction, there are also some that just doesn’t care or its not just a priority or maybe they don’t need it in the first place. Such is the deal with Tri, a new player in the already crowded Chi-Fi IEM game and with not much information to the brand, we could all just rely on their debut IEM to decide if we steer towards it or away from it.
Tri’s debut IEM, the i4 was sent in by Tri in exchange for an honest take on it and no monetary factors are involved. The i4 comes in at a price point of $69 which positions itself in a way that could make way for a dual approach for Tri to either push towards the $100 tier or go on the low based on how the i4 performs. You can head out to the KBEar AliExpress store to check out the Tri i4 since KBEar is a sister brand and both share the same storefront.

The Tri i4 is a single Balanced Armature and single Dynamic hybrid driver IEM and is spec’d out with a 20Hz to 40 kHz Frequency Response, 103dB/MW Sensitivity and 12 Ohm Impedance. There’s not much to draw as an introduction for the Tri i4 and for a newcomer brand in a any field of hobby and business, that’s already a tough task to break. Let’s see if this makes it or breaks it.

Packaging and Build Quality
I was seriously expecting the Tri i4 to come in mediocre packaging so when it came in a rather decent and presentable box. Protection is present in the form of foam cutouts where the i4 sits and an assortment of accessories are also included, here’s a full list:
  • Brown velvet button-type carrying case with the Tri-dent logo
  • Brown Velcro cable organizer
  • 1 pair black foam ear tips
  • 3 pairs black wide-bore silicone ear tips (S, M and L)
  • 3 pairs translucent gray with green narrow-bore ear tips (S, M and L)
This specific list of accessories is making a great first impression for the value of money that Tri aims the i4 to have.


The i4 IEM itself comes in only 2 colors; blue and brown. I was able to pick my own color and I went with the brown to match the brown velvet case that the i4 ships with. The i4 IEM has an all metal shell mainly made of aluminum alloy and it indeed feels premium with due to its mirror and smooth finish while still being able to create a brushed metal look. Two vents are present on the i4 to satisfy the dynamic driver and the Tri-dent logo is dead center on the faceplate with the nozzle protruding off the metal body with a well-defined lip making for an easy ear tip rolling experience.

The stock cable that comes with the i4 is a 4-core OFC sheathed in black and isn’t braided but instead uses traditional cable twisting. The tension on the twists are great since it allows for the twists to stay and place while still being resistant enough to retain folds. The sheathing material also feels clean to the hand and doesn’t get a bit sticky or slippery unlike other Chi-Fi black rubberized cables. The MMCX connectors are housed in the same black sheath and has L-R marking respectively. The Y-split and the chin slider is flushed and almost creates a seamless feel along the cable length. The right-angled gold-plated 3.5mm jack has great strain relief and the addition of the Velcro cable organizer made it a great stock cable overall. Microphonic noise is once again kept at a minimum even when used excessively on the go.

Tonality and Isolation
The Tri i4 doesn’t shy away from being a warm sounding set and embraces its signature as well as the user that it serves. It is this very aspect of the i4 that allows it to stay on most ears especially at the earlier stages of owning it but the rather easy sounding lows and highs also makes one to reach out for a more bass or treble emphasized IEM. The Tri i4 was tested using the included translucent gray with green narrow-bore ear tips (M) as well as the Sony WM1a music player and the Sony CAS-1 off an MSI GF62-8RE laptop using Foobar2000 v1.4.6 outputting various FLAC files which would be mentioned along the realview.

The Tri i4 handles the low-end with ease and with “time”. Depeche Mode’s No More (This is the Last Time) in 16/44 FLAC was used and the i4 gives the track much more emotion with how it complements the slow-paced bass hits. Sub bass is rendered thick with a slow decay. Mid bass is done tight and weighty but also less punchy than I would have preferred it to be. The overall bass performance came out full-bodied and robust but don’t expect the i4 to cater to your nimble bass cravings as this isn’t going to take being agile with the low-end seriously.

In typical warm sounding signature fashion, the Tri i4’s midrange has no choice but to blend well with the low-end. Bruno Mars came on serenading with his Versace on the Floor in 16/44 FLAC to test out the i4’s midrange abilities. The lower midrange was done full and smoothly. The vocal range of Bruno was clearly evident and gave out a slightly distant-sounding lower midrange. The upper midrange isn’t boosted nor lively, there is no extension to be observed. The i4’s midrange is all about being serene and calm, it doesn’t engage and push the instruments in your face and would be an easy recommendation to those looking for a low-key cozy session with your favorite tracks.

The higher frequency performance of the i4 keeps things in check in terms of adhering to the warm signature that the IEM wants to maintain overall. The treble has no extension and in turn also shows no signs of harshness and sibilance. Maroon 5’s Harder to Breathe in 16/44 FLAC gave clean treble hits with great snap to them, enough to make them pop out a bit. Great clarity is present and is taken into account this time around for the i4.

Soundstage and Imaging
The i4 gives out an intimate soundstage. Left to right and right to left panning isn’t that observable and makes the imaging to appear center at most times. Layering is however more distinct and gives the i4 a much needed kick in the soundstage department to allow it to create a good separation ability despite the fact that instruments aren’t that great in the width aspect. The flushed shell helps greatly with the soundstage and once again, selecting the best sized ear tips will immensely help the i4’s soundstage performance.

The Tri brand is showing good direction based on the i4 alone and for a brand that is literally just starting, that’s a promising sign. The choice of adding an attractive velvet carrying case and finally some decent stock ear tips is noteworthy too, it seems that this aspects that often haunt Chi-Fi IEMs are looking like a thing of the past. The comfort level of the i4 is also one of its strengths and gives it a fighting chance especially when one is considering multiple options. The i4’s sound also shows a good foundation to work on, a warm sound with clear vocals and a relaxed but enjoyable treble makes it a thumbs up IEM. So what’s wrong with the i4? None, maybe the number of IEMs that you already own might be one.


100+ Head-Fier
Pros: *Powerful, punchy bass
*Smooth, non fatiguing sound
*Excellent build quality
*Very comfortable
Cons: *Bass might be too restrained for bass heads
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First, I would like to thank KiKi from Kinboofi for graciously sending the I4's in exchange for an honest review.

I had previously never heard of TRI and was excited to try them out.
The TRI I4 is a new hybrid 2-way iem featuring a 10mm biocellulose dynamic driver to handle the low frequencies and a single Knowles balanced armature for mid and high frequencies. The shells are CNC machined out of aluminum alloy and they look and feel high quality with a reassuring weight and excellent comfort. The cable is very nice for a stock cable and attaches via mmcx connectors. There is a good selection of included tips, but I changed them out with red and blue tips solely because it makes it easier to tell right from left in low light. I always do this so, this had nothing to do with tip performance. Also inside the box, was a very soft velvet pouch. Nice!

My testing was done using FLAC's at 16bit/44.1k or higher played on my Hiby R3. The I4's sounded good on my Samsung Galaxy Note 9 but did scale a bit with more powerful sources.


Bass response is definitely elevated leaning more heavily on sub bass but still elevated to a lesser extent at the upper bass. Low end extension is very good and offers up a tight subwoofer sounding kick drum that is nice and fast and well defined. Upper bass is less accentuated but has good slam and polite, non bloated response. I especially enjoy its speed and definition. Bass overall, is tastefully presented and doesn't bleed into the lower mids. The bass is powerful and capable of producing a nice fat electronic bass for hip hop or edm but it is probably a bit too polite for true bass heads. The rest of us will approve.


Mids are slightly recessed but not enough to make vocals sound weak. There is excellent detail without sounding too aggressive or edgy. Female vocals sound great with nice air and no hint of upper mid sibilance. Male vocals are a tiny bit lean but I really like them. If more low mids are desired, they respond well to eq though I was happy as is. Electric guitars have good detail and nice girth. Some may wish for a bit more grit from them when listening to metal but, again, I enjoyed them as is. A boost around 3k on your eq will give you more edge if desired.


Upper mids and treble are smooth and non offensive. No sibilance anywhere. These are a departure from other iems in its price range likely owing to the use of a Knowles driver. There is plenty of air and sparkle but they are not overly aggressive and have no ugly peaks or valleys. Cymbals are rendered with a delicacy and control that is addictive. There is zero grain or glare.

Sound Signature

I would call the sound signature a mild V shape but not to the point that mids are buried. My biggest take away is of a very even and controlled sound with excellent timbre. They just sound very natural and wholesome.

Sound Stage

The soundstage is of slightly above average width and with decent depth. Individual individual instruments are easy to pick out and place on the stage. Boosting the treble a bit can make the width appear bigger but can overshadow the mids if boosting too much.

Music Genres

I enjoy the I4 with pretty much any genre but it excels at music with less density where the detailed mids shine giving a good sense of space and reverb tails sound sublime. Acoustic instruments such as guitar, violin, cello and even banjo sound stellar. You can hear the woodiness and texture of the instruments very well. Nice! Classic rock, jazz, and country will all be well reproduced. I enjoy electronic music with these, but they will not supply the long bass boom and treble hype that some expect. This is a good trade off in my opinion as they never get strident or fatiguing. I enjoy listening to "Slash with Myles Kennedy and the Co-Conspiritors", but often find the vocals to be quite sibient and even the kick drums have a sharp pointy sound. The I4 smoothes out the peaks and makes the mix sound ideal with powerful, fast kick drums, thick chunky guitars and a reasonably wide soundstage. The lack of sibilance makes these my go-to pair.


I have been listening to my KZ ZSX a lot lately and they are the perfect counter point to the I4. The KZ is slightly more efficient but, the I4 is easily driven from modest sources. Both sets have powerful bass but the ZSX has more grunt and slightly slower decay. Mids are slightly more recessed on the ZSX but have more aggressive detail and more grit. Treble in the ZSX is much more aggressive, but stops just short of too much. There is more air and naturally a wider stage that works well on genres that need more hype and excitement. The I4 is no slouch here but, it is less aggressive.
If you listen to edm, metal or hip hop often, you might prefer the KZ but it's not a deal breaker. They make a great 1-2 punch in my opinion.


If you have read this far, it's clear that I like the I4 very much. I have no reservations recommending them to anyone and they will continue to get a lot of playtime in my daily rotation going forward. I can't wait to try other products from TRI as they become available.

Wretched Stare

Pros: Good Bass , clear vocals, nice treble extension. A above average Uhaped IEM with excellent build quality.
Cons: Style is hit or miss, stock eartips needed to be replaced for better fit. Slightly recessed mids but typically the norm for a V shape.
This TRI I4 IEM has one Knowles BA and one 10mm Biocellulose Dynamic Diaphragm Driver each side, A good value at its price.
A durable CNC machined high-end Aviation aluminum alloy whole metal shell in blue and bronze, a standard Detachable MMCX cable and connectors, also comes with a really nice soft case/ pouch and a surprising amount of tips including foam and two types of silicone. The presentation far exceeded my expectations, well done TRI.



The i4 is very pleasing in its mids with a great detail and richness to them, vocals sound slightly forward just a little before the instruments in there presence males vocals have a fullness and nice emotion to them , female vocals are very rich and a little more noticeable above the music itself , this said the mids still sounds natural and have a slight warmth in their presentation.


Treble is very detailed and extend to the point of a good amount of sparkle at the top end without being overly harsh, they seem to roll off before any sibilants, something I appreciate very much.


The Bass has a nice amount of detail its a very balanced sounding bass both mid and sub-bass have excellent control and detain without overpowering the mids in any way.


The sound-stage is normal in size , like the base it isn't overly abundant but its there and has enough presences, imaging is also accurate.


This is a very solid quad driver IEM in both build and in sound a great effort by TRI and a good value IMO, I like the comfort, durability and sound of these, reminds me of the Tin T2 in many ways, I defiantly can see people liking these earphones.
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It’s not a quad driver it only has 1
Ba and 1 dd


1000+ Head-Fier
Pros: Good, largely natural sounding treble with and a solid bass slam
Best everyday mmcx cable that I've used.
Cons: Mids can be a tad recessed
Resonant upper mids with stock tips get tiring and throw off volume perception.
The bass can feel crowded with larger orchestrations.
disclaimer: The i4 was sent by KB Ear / Kinboofi for this review.

Sum: Well built all metal Hybrid with good resolution and a solid sub slam left a bit lean in the middle by heavy handed tuning when using included tips. Deeper insertion tips with narrower nozzles (Final Es are highly recommended) and Comply/foam tips work well to reduce resonance, making up for a relatively well controlled L signature.

The punchy bass paired with the Knowles armature render a realistic soundspace that does well with movies and games as well as music.

Audioquest Dragonfly Black v1.2, Spotify VHQ


The build quality is pretty good at this price level. The nozzles are well machined with a prominent lip, no tips will be left in your ear. The mmcx connector seems solid and well fitted. They are rather comfortable thanks to their small size and smooth shells, they feel solid in hand, clacking together like those steel bearing swings if you pick them up by the cable.

They come with what is probably my favourite daily driver cable so far, it is super tangle proof and drapes neatly. Low on microphonics. It has a pretty low profile 90 degree plug, finished well with an actual strain relief that attaches at the base of the jack. It has a nicely tooled chin slider, the connectors and split casings are compact and solid. It is a four twist below the split and not braided. Make one with a remote please.

They come in a well presented in a simple black box with the world's softest velour pouch. The box includes two types of silicones and a pair of memory foam tips. The website on the box goes to a placeholder page, perhaps they were not quite ready to market these.


The I4 by tri combines a 10mm Composite DD with a Knowles armature in reaching for both ends of the spectrum. The 10mm certainly pulls its weight and sounds like you've got a sealed, well controlled sub in the trunk that does not bleed into the rest of the spectrum and generally does well on its own.

–Discloure here, I'm definitely not a basshead, having once returned an er3xr for having too much bass–

I first found the bass tuned a step too high and the crossover a little early with the Knowles not being Dampened/tuned in a manner that would harmonize well with that bass impact. I don't know if it's burn-in or tip-rolling but it's much better now that I'm coming back to it. The sub kicks can still startle a bit. Earlier, I was having to set the volume for the bass and the 4k+7k peaks, decoupling the two with a valley in the lower mids.

This is where the kz blue tips, final e tips or complys work wonders in reducing the 4/7 resonances. You could potentially achieve something similar by inserting a soft material in the nozzles for dampening. I ended up with comply/final e for as they make the i4s sound more coherent.

Regardless of tips, the precise bass is pleasant on its own with well mastered records, it surprises me at times how how well it can discriminate in the sub 50hz range. For many songs it does well, and many others it was too discordant for my taste with the included tips.

The bass does not bleed much to the rest of the spectrum but the high-sub / low-mids can get a bit crowded at points in multi-instrumental songs.

Moving on beyond the mids left slightly behind our main performers, highs are detailed and rendered well without significant sibilance. They are very insertion dependant though, so make sure you find a pair of tips that allow you to insert past pesky reonances. Unlike straight barrel iems, the insertion depth options are limited so take care to find what works.


It has pretty good semblance of location, especially in well mastered, sparser songs like Redbone by Childish Gambino or Bjork's Hunter. The effect largely reaches out in width (more so than in depth) with a well located central image. Between the Knowles' rendering of details and the large sound stage, it had me looking around thinking there was something in the room. While well defined, the soundstage is not enormouse.

By Song

Charlie Haden's This is Not America is well rendered with its split drum (It basically puts you in the middle of the drum kit with other instruments arranged around you, it is a creative take on simulating listening at a small venue). The recessed low mids with included tips can confuse some more cacaphonous moments like the crescendo of Holst's Mars from the Planets.

With stock tips: I am an Ape - St. Vincent & David Byrne 1-1:30 and 1:50 to 1:60 bass overpresent, between the 6k peak and the bass the mids feel lacking
With blue KZ: It is better controlled, lower bass tones could still take a slight step back and mids remain a little recessed but it doesn't feel like something is wrong. With Comply / Final E: It sounds pretty good, with above problems largely gone.

For records that are to the warmer side of the spectrum that are not hyper compressed and retain their dynamic range the like London Philharmonic's The Planets, the low end actually helps to extend the tonal range a bit with the occasionally overdone lower register of the strings section.

For others like Steely Dan's Jack of Speed (I had to, it's on every stupid audio test playlist) the effect is more like one of those surround upsampling DSPs, everything is pulled apart but not exactly in a good way. It's better on Bela Fleck's Flight of the Cosmic hippo thanks to the recordings gentle highs but the bass is still over the top. Like I am an Ape above, the blue tips help a lot.

Recordings with generous high rolloff like Tin Pan Alley (should get the worst lyrics ever award, and yes, again, on every stupid list because echo-y guitar and clear separation of sparse instruments sells speakers) do well with the airy rendition of the I4s.

I have a couple go-tos for checking harshness of highs and the i4s do well on the non-sibilant ones likes Will O'the Wisp which can be unpleasant depending where the peaks land. They are on the other hand often a little grating on high heavy crescendos (Like the refrain in Ironic - Alanis Morisette, but then, what headphone is not! Ha! Elementary School days, it must've sounded better on the walkman, two casette transfers down from the radio. The 2015 remaster is better)

- By ear, well matched drivers
- Relatively flat signature past the sub hump
- The inner/outer vents allow for easy bass modding with some tape and a needle.

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500+ Head-Fier
Pros: - Great SQ, vocal centric signature with lots of detail and good low end extension
- Non fatiguing upper end
- Comfortable
- Well built
- Good set overall with a good variety of tips
Cons: - Out-of-the-box tips are weird
- Instruments are a tad recessed: people looking for something to use with orchestral tracks should search for something else
- Bass is a bit thin with average texturing
- Strong competition in this price bracket
TRI is a new brand in the Chi-fi market which actually surprised many reviewers with their debut pair of IEMs: the i4.
I spent a lot of time reading many good words about the i4 in other forums and I couldn't wait for these to get in my hands.
After some listening I'm ready to tell you some thoughts about them.

Disclaimer: the TRI i4 were sent free of charge by AK Audio in exchange of a honest review.



Technical Specs

Drivers: 1DD + 1BA (Knowles)
Sensitivity: 103±3 dB/mW
Impedance: 12 ohm±20%
Frequency Response: 20 Hz – 40000 Hz
Cable lenght: 1.2m±5cm Detachable (MMCX Connectors), no microphone.
Plug Type: L-type golden plated 3.5mm jack\


Packaging consists in a carton package which should be opened from the top.
As soon as you open it, you immediately feel that the i4 are beautiful.
You’ll see the IEMs, a very nice velvet pounche, 6 silicon tips (3 wide bore tips and 3 spinfit-like tips), a pair of foam tips and a good cable.
Overall, the presentation in the package is really elegant and this is a good starting point.

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Cable has good feel in the hand, being soft to the touch (maybe because of the silicone coating), and it’s made of a 4-core copper wire inside.
Connectors to the IEMs are MMCX and the opposite side of the cable ends with a gold plated 3.5mm L-type jack.
The cable does not feature a microphone and surprisingly there isn’t any version with microphone.
You can obviously buy an aftermarket MMCX cable that features a microphone; for example, I have a MMCX cable which I do not use and I think I’m gonna use it with these when I go outside so I can even use these to make calls with my smartphone.


Build Quality

Build quality is stunning: they’re built like and they’re even surprisingly lightweight. They are completely made of metal and the only downside is that the shell is a sort of fingerprint magnet: every time you touch the shell, you just leave a little fingerprint which is visible as soon as the IEMs are under any kind of light, but this is really not dealbreaking (at least for me).
The TRI logo is printed on the shell and even if I prefer clean faceplates, this is not actually too big nor showy.
There are 2 vents: one in the internal side of the IEMs, and one on the lower side of the shell. The nozzle features a nozzle lip and the usual metal grill, and it’s safe to say it’s way shorter than ZS7 and similar IEMs’ nozzles.

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Comfort and Isolation

Comfort-wise they fit like a glove. The main thing you have to consider is that you MUST find a good pair of tips in order to use them without any kind of issue.
In my case, the stock wide bore tips were not enough, so I had to put another pair of wide bore tips in my collection which are a bit more rigid compared to the super splashy wide bore tips that you’ll find on the i4 directly out of the box.
Once the seal is correct, they provide a good isolation as well, even if not at the same level of other IEMs in my collection (like the **** Ash for example).


Let’s get into it.
Now the critical factor that decides if something has to be tried or not: how do they sound? I mainly listen to EDM subgenres, Dupstep, Future Bass, Euphoric Hardstyle, Bass House, Midtempo and downtempo, darkwave, drum’n bass, but i even listen to many vocal tracks, moreover female ones. I always search for IEMs that have a little bit of emphasis in the lower region, and can sacrifice mids with some recession if they still sound clear and natural. I love vivid and sparkling highs if they’re not at a headache level. V-shape signature is usually my favourite one but in the last period i’m appreciating a more balanced presentation with less recessed mids, more of a U shape.

Test were made on:
– Galaxy S7 Edge Smartphone
– Presonus AudioBOX iONE connected to my PC with no Enhancements actived
– AGPTEK M30B/Benjie S8 DAP
I even connect my Fiio A3 when i need it if i hear some earphones need a little more power.

Lows: the low end extends well and provide a good rumble in the lowest part of the spectrum. The bass is not the most textured I have ever heard, but it’s not bad in any case. It has a nice slam and medium speed, and kickdrums sound just right without being overwheilming. The lower region is sure far from being linear, but we can easily say the TRI i4 are not extremely exaggerated if we speak about bass and sub-bass emphasis.

Mids: midrange is a mixed bag. The lower mids are good with a nice warmth given by the lower region bump. The instruments are a tad recessed, taking a place behind the vocals. Female voices are the real star of the show: they’re forward with a solid presence on the stage. These are great vocal centric performers.

Highs: highs are just right. They have an neutral tonality without being warm nor too brilliant. The highest part of the spectrum is a bit rolled off but that doesn’t take details away. Highs are, in fact, capable of retrieving a good amount of detail, and aren’t fatiguing at all.

Soundstage is wider than deep with average height for the price bracked. Instrument separation is good, but putting very complex tracks could trip them up a bit. Imaging is good and instrument positioning is very precise.

I have tried using them with my smartphone with no issues, but they become more consistent if connected to an amplifier.

Now a comparison with their strongest competitor:
TRI i4 vs Tin Audio T3
I wanna make a little premise: I love both. This because readers have to know i do not speak about personal preference while comparing two IEMs.
Starting from the lower region, the TRI i4 are much more emphasized in the lower region, being much more punchy and going deeper than the T3. The midrange is more recessed in the i4, with instruments taking the second place just behind the vocals. The T3 have a more centric midrange: instruments are resolved better and are more forward. T3 highs are more emphasized and tend to be sibilant while the i4 doesn’t have this issue, and provide a non fatiguing experience. Detail retrieval is better on the T3, but the sibilance is annoying, moreover if we think that the i4 is not prone to be sibilant.
Soundstage is more expansive in the i4, but instrument separation is better on the T3, which are capable of dominating every kind of track. The i4 trips up a bit earlier, but they’re still a good competitor. Imaging is on par but it seems like the i4 has the soundstage advantage which result in a better spatial rendering, and consequently a more consistent instrument positioning.
The i4 are easier to drive while the T3 are more power hungry and are less forgiving with bad recordings.
Overall, if I have to sum up, the T3 have a more technical approach while the i4 are more musical. The T3 are a very strong competitor, but it’s safe to say that the i4 perform very well and are better suited for on-the-move listening sessions compared to the T3.


TRI’s debut is fairly impressive: their first IEMs are extremely musical, well built, comfortable and capable of being a good contender in their price range.
Their strongest competitors (Tin Audio T3) are sure technically better, but miss the energy and the musicality that the i4 really feature as main feature.
If TRI will keep up making good products like these, I’m sure we’re gonna see some serious hype on their products, just like we see hype on KZ and other brands’ produc


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New Head-Fier
Pros: good stage and rich in details
controlled, textured bass
great processing
Cons: somewhat demanding mids
upperbass sometimes a little booming
TRI is a new CHI-FI company that has seen the light of day and presents its debut i4. The i4 convinces with an excellent workmanship and fit, as well as with a well tuned V-signature, where the lower mids sometimes lack some assertiveness. A good all-rounder at a moderate price!

Three sizes of foamtips, 4 pairs of silicone tips, a beautiful leather bag and a removable MMCX cable, medium quality, are included in the i4 package.
That's more than decent for me, but it's also reflected in the price.

Visually, the i4 is slightly different from its countless competitors on the market. It's just the little things that make it deviate from the familiar standard design, but it can stand out from the crowd thanks to its angular, elegant style. Everything looks as if it has been cast in one piece and gives it a robust appearance without even having it in your hand or ear.
If you are ready, you won't be disappointed. The i4 feels very valuable, has a moderate weight and has an excellent fit. The case is made of aluminium, which underlines the very good haptics.

The isolation is really good, very good even with the right tip size!

The TRN i4 relies on a dynamic driver and a BA driver from Knowles, which makes it price-wise and technically compatible with the TIN HIFI T3. The TIN HIFI T3 doesn't have the broad stage and bass presence of the i4, but a richer midrange and a larger expansion in treble with a reliable susceptibility to sibilants.

The bass has an astonishingly linear presentation, allowing sub and mid bass to agree on harmonic coexistence. The level of detail is remarkable, as well as the texture. It is not overemphasized and always controlled. I'd like a more powerful punch, but he' s fast, clear and clean even with more complex songs. Rarely does the upper bass tend to boom.

Due to the very low mids, the bass inevitably has a slight effect on them, without becoming overshadowed. It gives enough warmth not to make them appear too thin and also to give male voices the body they need to sound natural. Female voices go more forward than their male counterparts, but both stand in front of the instruments. The mids are very spatial and detailed. Unpleasant peaks are seldom to be expected.

The highs find a very good mixture of liveliness and vastness, without becoming strenuous, or unnecessarily bringing out the sibilants. Certainly not for treple heads, but the level of detail and the expansion is still convincing and realistic! They give the mids more openness and lightness and create a wide 3D image. A little more depth might be needed, but there will be few who would say that the highs lack anything, or that they create a false sound.

With the i4, TRI has created a good mid-range in-ear, which doesn't attack the high-class segment in an urgent way, but can also leave some budget models behind in terms of quality. It achieves this with a balanced, largely relaxed V-signature, a wide stage and excellent workmanship. Small points of criticism are the slightly too elevated upper mids compared to their lower colleagues, which can also lead to slight fatigue, as well as the not always tight upper bass.

More reviews:
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Previously known as presata
Pros: good bass response, solid build and fit, inoffensive treble response, can get brutal with bass boost
Cons: sharp upper mids, loosing composure on fast complex tracks

source for the review - Sabaj DA3 (from the balanced out)

Songs used for the review
Jim Keltner - Improvisation
Eric Clapton - My father's Eyes
Nah Youn Sun - My Favorite Things
Inception - Dream Collapsing
Steve Strauss - Youngstown
Stimulus Timbre - Expression
Diana Krall – Let's Fall in Love
Trevor Jones - Clear The Tracks!
The DALI CD - Zhao Cong , Moonlight on Spring River
Baba-Yaga, for orchestra, Op. 56
Rebecca Pidgeon - Grandmother
Sara K - Maritime
Trevor Jones - Promentory
Patricia Barber - Regular Pleasures
Dire Straits - Brothers In Arms
Dire Straits - Your Latest Trick
Dave Brubeck - Take Five
Marcin Przybylowicz - Go Back Whence You Came
James Horner - Going After Newt
Hans Zimmer - Dream Is Collapsing
Hans Zimmer - Molossus
Harry Gregson - Emergency Launch
Shpongle - Shpongle Spores
Dizzy Gillespie - Could it Be You
Dominik Eulberg - Bjorn Borkenkafer
Trentemoller - The Forest
Kryptic Minds And Leon Switch - Ocean Blue
Nirvana - MTV Unplugged In New York (Album)
Xiomara Laugart - Tears and Rumba (2015) [192-24](Album)
Xiomara Laugart (2006) Xiomara (24-96)(Album)
Xiomara Laugart (2010) La Voz (24-88)(Album)
Jed Palmer - Upgrade (2018)(Album)
Jon Hopkins - Insides (2009)(Album)
Eric Serra - Lucy (2014) [flac](Album)

Dual Driver
1BA : Customized Knowles
1DD : 10mm Biocellulose Diaphragm Driver
Durable CNC Metal Shell
Detachable MMCX Cable

I would like to thank Wendy for the review sample.
I4 was interesting to me because of the look and specs, was hoping for more coherent natural sound with the simple two driver setup.

6 pairs of silicone eartips, one pair foam, soft caring case, black cable
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Build, fit and comfort
excellent build, they are made from metal, the fit and comfort are great for me, they are small and the shape is very nice

the isolation is about average

Overall sound signature.
mid bass bump, forward upper mids with neutral sounding treble

The bass have good extension with mid bass bump. The mid bass is over the sub bass by a couple of DBs.
It sound natural with real instruments like kick drums and bass guitars. The control of the bass is good but is not the quickest, is not bloated but on complex tracks with high volume it can get a bit blurry.
With EQ it can get into bass head territory, brutal without distortions, i like that, the dynamic driver inside is a powerhouse.
Overall good bass response, not the tightest but very good.

Lower mids sound natural, they are a tad dipped but the male vocals have good timber. Upper midrange is the problem area, is not only boosted but it has a edge to it. Female vocals are forward, that can be enjoyable for some people, but for me is not enjoyable at all. With well recorded music and normal volume levels is not a problem, but on higher volume level even with well recorded stuff it gets uncomfortable to me.
Overall midrange is the weakest point, edgy and hot with some songs.

The treble sounds like it is under the upper mids in quantity. The extension is average, it has natural tone and it is inoffensive. Nothing to complain here, good treble but nothing special.

Soundstage and imaging.
Soundstage size is average, is not closed in but is not very wide, the imaging is not very distinct, especially on fast and complex tracks it start to collapse a little bit.

TRI I4 VS Blon BL03

Blon has sub bass focus, the lower bass is more than the mid bass, I4 is the opposite.
Blon have faster attack with better texture and faster decay also, with fast and complex tracks the Blon is not loosing composure, I4 struggles a bit with the bass control

Blon have more transparent mids, it sound tonally correct, I4 mids sound aggressive with thin tone to them compared to BL03

Blon have more natural sounding treble, the treble on I4 is good but the Blon is better here
The extension is a little bit better on the Blon as well

Soundstage and imaging
Blon have a little bit bigger stage, the imaging is more distinct on the Blon, it can separate the instruments better inside the soundstage and on fast tracks is keeping everything clean and composed

They are good for the price if you are not sensitive to upper mid energy.
I am unfortunately (thank you Jim) so for me they are not very good, i prefer the Blon by a large margin.

Have a good one.


Headphoneus Supremus
Pros: Great build quality, good comfort level for long wear.
Cons: Not the most neutral signature, instrument separation suffers on overly complex tracks.

TriAudio i4

disclaimer: The Tri Audio I4 was sent to me by Kinboofi for purposes of review. Prior to their request, I had not heard of the brand and in researching it, very little additonal information is available. It appears to be a new startup Chinese in-ear manufacturer with the I4 being its first product broadly marketed outside China. I found a few references to the i4 model in recent Japanese reviews, but very little in the way of technical detail on the model or the company. Kinboofi sells the Tri Audio I4 through their Amazon store and can be reached through their facebook page if you have an interest in picking one up. Retail on the I4 is roughly 70USD for reference.

Unboxing / Packaging:

The i4 comes in a lift top style box in understated matte black with a gloss black TRI and logo on the cover. The rear of the box has specs on the lower portion using a glued on label. I would expect to see subsequent releases in the same box with a different label in place of the i4 version. Inside the box, the earpieces and cable form a heart shape in a foam housing at top while the carry case holding the remaining accessories sits beneath it. The carry case contains the remainder of the tip selection (7 total) and the cable tie. Tips include three sizes (SML) of two types of silicone and a single pair of Foam tips that I would characterize as large. Standard T400 tips fit.


Shells are aluminum alloy and on the small side. Faceplates and inner shells both sport a clean medium blue anodizing with a white Tri logo on the faceplates and L and R clearly marked on the under surface. Polish is extremely well done with the seam on the faceplate being visible but very even with no gaps, burs, or glue to be seen. Venting is provided by a pin-hole vent on the rear surface and the inner surface behind the nozzles. Nozzles exit the forward most area of the earpiece with a slight upward rake and a pronounced lip for holding T400 tips in place. Unlike most at this price point, the nozzles are not a separate part and are machined as part of the creation of the inner shell. mmcx connectors are recessed to be even with the surface of the shell and again are well fitted with no gaps or glue. I found comfort to be very good partially due to their smaller than average size and partially due to their shape and weight. Overall, these come as close to disappearing as can reasonable be expected.


The Tri I4 uses a single 10mm bio-composite dynamic driver along with a customized Knowles balanced armature driver to handle the high frequencies. Nominal impedance is listed as 12Ω but gives the caveat of being ±20%. Sensitivity is listed as 103dB/mW ±3db. I found the i4 was usable from a phone or tablet, but did like the sound a bit better with the Opus #1s as the source as the extra power gives the i4 a bit better control especially in the lows.


The cable is a standard length (1.2m) cable terminated with a gold plated 90º 3.5mm TRS jack. Cable is a 4 wire oxygen free copper twist in black casing up to the small black plastic splitter, then exits as two twisted pairs as it continues northward. A chin-slider is provided immediately above the splitter and could be missed as it appears to be part of the splitter at first glance. Terminations at the earpieces have pre-formed earhooks and gold plated mmcx connectors as well.



The i4 has good sub-bass depth and quantity with roll-off starting to be audible below 50Hz. There is considerable mid-bass emphasis as it cuts through the rest of the signature pretty clearly. Mid-bass provides good thump and tapers as it moves toward the mids with very little mid-bass bleed to color the sound. Bass texture is good and control is better than expected at the price point as mid-bass remains fairly tight even as tracks get increasingly complex.


Lower mids are slightly recessed but have good detail and very little perceptible bass bleed. Male vocals have good timbre and sound realistic. As we move up, the mids take a definite turn forward with upper-mids becoming the overall focal point of the signature. Voices move to the front of the instrumentation. Guitar timbre is good with acoustic being slightly less so than electric. For my tastes, the upper mids could step back slightly as they are a bit unnaturally forward, but it does make this a very vocal-centric tuning.


Lower treble shares the forward push with the upper-mids and makes the Tri-i4 vocal centric. Above the lower treble hump, the treble drops back fairly rapidly with a bit a bump at 10kHz. This prevents any hint at stridency, but also limits upper extension and air at the top end. Overall, its a good option for the treble shy but those looking for the last bit of treble extension will find the i4 to be a bit shy of that. Cymbals come across as a bit soft and not as crisp as they should be as a result of treble tuning.

Soundstage / Imaging:

Stage on the i4 is fairly large with good depth and slightly larger width. Imaging is good with movement on the stage being easy to track and placement of instruments being mostly proper with a few minor overlaps. Instrument separation is good until pieces get overly complex and then the i4 starts to struggle a bit to keep things clean. Layering follows that same pattern of being good until things get overly complex and then it starts to decay a bit. It is still passable at worst, but not quite as clean as when used with a more sparse arrangement.


BQEYZ BQ3 – construction is similar with both sporting well made metal shells and both having solid cables provided. The i4 is a bit more of a V signature while the BQ3 is a bit more W shaped. Low end extension is about equal on both models with a slight boost in quantity going to the i4 while upper end extension is a bit better on the BQ3. Those that find the BQ3 a bit bright will prefer the i4 while those that find the i4 a bit closed in at the top end may like the BQ3 a bit better.

TFZ Series 2- I include this one based on price point and signature, but build isnt even close. Plastic fantastic vs all aluminum and polished is a bit of a mismatch here. The TFZ2 is a bit deeper in the recess so mids take a backseat a bit more and the treble is more aggressive which can make the TFZs2 sound a bit harsh at times in comparison. Overall, the i4 is the better looking and sounding of the pair.

AAW/Shozy -Hibiki Mk2 – Again, build goes to the i4 (not even close). Cable goes to the AAW (no surprise there). Signatures are both Vs but again the Hibiki is a bit more recessed in the mids and shows less resolution than the i4. If I could move the cable from the Hibiki to the i4, I’d say the i4 is the better choice, unfortunately, one is bi-pin and the other mmcx so not an easy swap.

Ibasso IT01 – The IT01 wins on kit as it has better accessories and build is a wash as both are well made. Arguably the materials used are better on the i4 but with reasonable care both should last well. The recess in the mids is a bit more pronounced than on the i4, but treble extension is a bit better on the it01. Overall, both have a lot to like and those looking for good bass will like both, those listening to a lot of strings will likely prefer the i4 with its better mid-range detail.

Thoughts / Conclusion:

The in-ear market is certainly a crowded space and trying to break into what is arguably the top selling bracket in the market with a 1st product is a daunting task. TriAudio has done a good job of building a product that is eye-catching, well built, and with a well detailed polite sound signature that emphasizes the things most listeners of Rock and Pop music are looking for. The i4 will make a good companion for teens that may be a bit hard on in-ears as the shells are nearly indestructible, the cable replaceable, and the sound signature well matched to today’s releases. Overall, it is an impressive debut and TriAudio will certainly be on my radar for additional testing/reviews as new products are released. Thanks again to Kinboofi for introducing me to Tri and graciously sending the i4 for review.