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BEST Sub-100$ BUDGET EARPHONES - Chi-fi, Obscure brands and impressions sharing-REFERENCE LIST

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  1. kova4a
    Honestly, I highly doubt the zs5 is better, but I never heard it - just saw the ridiculous pics and videos of the drivers covered in glue and drew my conclusions. Gone are the days I would by overhyped stuff to disprove the claims, so I'm not shelling out any money for zs5 or zs6 just to bash on them. I still keep my opinion that people are jumping on those cheap hybrids just because of the number of the drivers and the supposed tech advance even though there's close to zero R&D, zero crossovers etc. And there's zero hype for the single driver xduoo ep1, which I'm willing to bet good money destroys at least half of all those "giant slayers", coz it's a lowly single-driver iem from an "unknown" brand, while KZ is established "audiophile" trademark.

    And as far as the re400 goes, there are plenty of reviews, including joker's, so no need to promote it any more - as I said, it's not my favorite iem in the price range, but it is good nevertheless and there's no grain in the treble at all - can't hear any.
    Last edited: Dec 1, 2017
    vladstef and B9Scrambler like this.
  2. B9Scrambler
    I appreciate the kind comments but everyone should know by now that I'm a KZ fanboy so feel free to disregard any comparisons to that brand, haha. That said, I have no issues pointing out models of theirs that I personally think are subpar or a waste of money, of which there are many; HDS2, HDS3, ZSE, ZN1 Mini, among others. Even still, compared to earphones like the M4 and B3 Pro II the RE400 feels like it's coming up short imo and not just in build quality. I'm going to continue to give them a chance though since I've only put maybe 20 hours of music through them. Could warm up to them with the right setup. It's happened before. That cable will always suck though, haha.
    vladstef likes this.
  3. chickenmoon
    I like warmish IEMs better usually and they also felt a bit more coherent so that is why I liked the Reds better. Didn't have more time with them since then so can't comment further for now.
    Happy Hacking likes this.
  4. chickenmoon
    No I haven't but I'll keep that in mind, thanks.
  5. Vidal
    Horses for courses mate, I prefer brighter sound and bigger soundstage, from memory the RE400 didn't hit a home run in either of these. Would like to give them another spin but I'm saving up for possible TOTL purchase.
  6. thejoker13
    I completely understand your feelings on this. I used to associate the number of members comments to their knowledge of this hobby. I read how great certain earphones were, according to members with thousands of comments and in the end I was sorely disappointed by some of those earphones. Through the years I've learned how much hearing is subjective and also how ear shape and earphone fit meant to their overall sound signature. In the end, enjoy what moves you and don't let someone else's feelings about a specific earphone affect your enjoyment. If you like it, then that's all that truly matters. Good luck in your quest for musical pleasure and enjoyment and the mythical end game earphone, haha.
    OopsWrongPlanet, oyobass and vladstef like this.
  7. Itayaz68
    Got my senfer ues. Can't really compete with higher priced iem but for the price I paid (22.5$ from aliexpress) It's really impressive. Definitely the best iem I've come across in this price range.
  8. thejoker13
    Very nice, enjoy! I still give my UE's some ear time every once in awhile. I feel like they compete well in their price range too. I also find them to be VERY tip dependent, so make sure you try different tips to slightly tweak the sound to your preferences.
  9. NymPHONOmaniac
    So lot of people receive their toys....hum, i'm kinda of jealous hehe will read back to keep track.

    Myself I receive ULTRA FAST just one thing....not really for this thread....it make two week, it's the DIY AK4490 AMP-DAC. Since I receive it I was thinking it was broke because no power supply work with it, I finally use a 9V battery pluged in and it didnt work more than five minutes, when it does sound was very low fi so I was VERY mad....I write to seller to understand the problem, hum, he tell me to install some peice on it was very confuse and I feel cheated, like, the build quality was nice and all the precious compenents (xmos, AK dac, cheageble amp chip) was there too.....so I find another plug for the 9V battery and AND!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Voilà!!! All work perfect, the sound is mesmerizing! Ultra clear and wide, fowards vocal, extremely well placed instrument separation....listen to it right now just can't stop what the heck 30-40$ for that! Sound better than my Ibasso DX90....and its....euh, 360$ less. It have good amping too. Anyway, will share more about this on experimental DAC-AMP thread, really, this is serious stuff. But, its not an easy plug and play device, and you need the right power supply. It worth the effort for sure tough.

    Still waiting for my IEM...HCK wasn't as fast as before this time.

    Happy to see Tinaudio got the praise, make me even less patient about them to arrive!
    Slater and HungryPanda like this.
  10. NymPHONOmaniac
    Hey dude, I like beer too, drink some IPA right now from Mill St brewery and its delicious, but I will not talk about this on this thread cause its out of subject:wink: Anyway, for boooolshat assumption, its about taste, as well as some reviewer are kind of...chifi prostitute but thats to debate, so, reviews are exceptionally pumped up sometime on headfi, like they give 4 stars but hate the stuffs in real life (they wanna please the pimp!), I don't like that too! But EVERYBODY are true about one thing, you can't compare headphones with IEM, so, please stop talking about your Beyerdynamic here, its kind of annoying, you can share impressions about IEM, even negative, and perhaps if it's well explained it will be helpfull for some people. Still, I wanna help you in your quest, and as other suggest, try chifi headphone, especially ISK and BOSSFI or SUPERLUX. I personally suggest you the ISK HF2010, but I don't think they will kick ass ofyour Beyer (they cost 40$) but i'm pretty certain if your source is good that you will find them impressive for the price. And for helping you to, there a thread about chifi headphone, check it out!

    Peace from Québec, je sais qu'il y a deux langues en belgique, mais le français y est pratiqué aussi....j'aimerais vraiment y aller mais je crains les impacts sur mon pauvre foie héhé! Ah, les bières d'abbaye!
    Last edited: Dec 1, 2017
  11. Smiped
    Just wondering, does the DAP (Benjie K8) offer better sound quality than a standard smartphone such as the OnePlus X?
  12. chi-fi mel
    You really think the ZSE is a waste of $5.59? I disagree, it sounds great, fits great, is built great, looks great, and is one of the best bang for the buck audio products out there.
  13. Happy Hacking


    I've posted my initial impressions of the K8 on the benjie thread. Basicly, it is a very small device so its easy to bring around in your pocket and doesnt feel like you're taking around a second phone. Solid built, and separate battery from your phone which lasts pretty long! ~12+ ish hours nonstop playtime.

    No more hisses and static, and I can hear more detail and better separation compared to my OnePlus 3T (Which I found to be pretty decent for a phone).
    Last edited: Dec 2, 2017
  14. Itayaz68
    Definitely, tried them with dual flange tips and they sounded horrible. Fit is unbelievable, amazing comfort for that price. Overall, I'd say that they're slightly better than the M6 pro, which is very impressive for less than half the money.
  15. Orac
    If you haven't already, try warming it with a hairdryer and then shape it.

    N.B. it should go without saying, but don't use a soldering torch for this. It sounds so dumb to point it out, but the hairdryer tip is used for plastic plumbing pipe, and still idiots use a torch and then complain the pipe melted.

    This has become a pet hate of mine. As well as the excessively tight turns and kinks, I've had several cables lately with ties wrapped and closed so tightly they leave permanent indentations in the cable jacket.
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