Brainwavz S5 Review.
Nov 4, 2014 at 2:34 AM Thread Starter Post #1 of 1

gikigill

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Review for the Brainwavz S5.
 
Firstly a big thanks to Audrey and Brainwavz for providing me the S5 for review. I am not affiliated or been financially compensated for the review except the earphones.
 
I was contacted by Audrey to review these and received a package very quickly after our communication on Headfi. The package was very simple but smart and had all the accessories and even a set of Complys which is a great inclusion. The hard case is a nice touch too as it provides someplace to tuck these away and the flat cable ensure they stay untangled.
 
These retail at $100 and the accessories and the build quality would rate it much higher. The expectations of an earphone in this heavily crowded market are very high and there is no shortage of competitors so what makes the S5 so special?
 
To start with the exterior, we have the nozzles which are at angle to the main body and surprisingly enough very comfortable and lightweight to stay in my ears. My Sony XBA-H3 sticks out like an eyesore and the S5 solves that problem very elegantly with its angled housing.
 
The wire as previously mentioned is a flat affair and great for day to day usage as it stays out of trouble and is usable straight out of your bag instead of the usual fidgeting around after putting a set of earphones in your pocket/bag/purse etc.
 
Lets jump to the sound quality now as see where the S5 stands in this fiercely contested market.
 
To start with the highs, the highs are very smooth with good extension and crunch but seem to limit themselves to that very last bit of detail and extension. Guitars are crunchy but could use just that little more crunch and extension. Mind you the average customer cares more about the bass more so that might not be as big a shortcoming for the average customer as I will elaborate further.
 
The mids are slightly recessed as the S5 seems to be aiming for a consumer oriented sound and while the mids are not thin or lacking in body, for their intended consumer they might just be perfect since the vocals are smooth and clear they are just mildly recessed and that is not a bad thing especially for electronica/trance/techno. I would rate them as easy listening and the mids simply flow but once again just need that bit more forwardness to be perfect and after experimenting with tips, they do change their sound signature for a slightly more forward midrange.
 
Coming to the bass its very punchy, very well defined and hits the right notes. A decent amount of texture and quantity makes it a very fun listen without being boomy or having a one note bass and having decent amplification makes the S5 shine even better in this area. My Arrow 4G would push the bass to stupid levels and the S5 would happily put up with it while the E12DIY controlled the whole scenario and gave the bass a bit more control and punch with its superior power. Overall this will easily satisfy bassheads provided they feed it well enough with a decent amp.
 
Overall I would recommend them at their price as they are pretty non-offensive in their sound signature especially for bassheads as they are very satisfying in that regard and really shine with an amplifier. Trance and other electronica are a pleasure to listen to as are drum and bass. They have a very warm presentation and I guess Brainwavz is aiming for the mass market and that’s not necessarily a bad thing.
 
A breakdown of the tracks and equipment used underneath to give a better understanding of the environment in which they were reviewed.
 
Tracks used:
 
HouseRockerz-Herzrasen. 320kbps mp3 16/44.
 
Digimax & Javiera Mena - Complejo de Amor. WAV 16/44.
 
Hammer & Bennett – Lost. FLAC 16/44.
 
Zazie-Larsen. 320 kbps mp3 16/44.
 
Ayla - Ayla (Taucher Remix). WAV 16/44.
 
Kraftwerk-Das Model. WAV 16/44.
 
Bob Marley-Jamming. WAV 16/44
 
Wippenberg-Phoenix. WAV 16/44.
 
 
The amplifiers used were:
 
Headstage Arrow 4G.
 
Epiphany Acoustics O2.
 
Fiio E12DIY.
 
Bottlehead SEX.
 
Sources used were:
 
Geek Out 1000.
 
Sony NH1
 
Galaxy S3/Note 4 with Viper installed.
 
 
P.S.
 
My review was late as I was waiting for some of my equipment to come back so I could listen to these earphones properly( I always have stuff coming and going to/from other headfiers) and in the meanwhile my two cats managed to get a hold of a couple of my earphones/headphones and chewed them out. The casualties included the S5 and my Fischer Audio FA-011.
I had to get a second pair to review these again just before finalizing and posting my review as it wouldn't be fair to Brainwavz to do a half cooked assessment. I don't write a lot but try to be thorough so heard them again and finally penned my thoughts.Apologies again to Audrey and the Brainwavz team.
 
Here are the furry culprits:
 

 
 
 

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