Chinese / Asian Brand IEM Info Thread
Aug 17, 2017 at 1:58 PM Post #10,726 of 33,692
I want to give Chinese IEMs one more shot, hopefully you guys can point me in the right direction with your experience. I'm looking for neutral or balanced sound with imaging, sound stage and isolation as important features. Bass is not important to me, in fact it annoys me so anything that's bass heavy would be a bad fit. I'm looking to stay under $65 from Amazon.

$16 Adax ht-06

$26 E-MI CI880

$35 KZ ZS5

Which one out of those three better fits my preferences? Any others?
i don't know that any of those three would meet your criteria--for neutral/balanced with vg isolation i'd opt for the bosshifi b3
 
Aug 17, 2017 at 2:35 PM Post #10,727 of 33,692
This is exactly what happened to me with the ZS5. I was on here saying that I was taken aback at how bad the ZS5 was after good initial impressions, turns out my laptop sounded like garbage with it for some reason and with my G6 or Mojo it sounded a ton better.

I'm no expert in the subject, but... if the IEM has 4 drivers per side, isn't it more susceptible to differences in amp output impedance's and/or cable impedance's?

That would explain the many different opinions on the ZS5's.
 
Aug 17, 2017 at 2:39 PM Post #10,728 of 33,692
Aug 17, 2017 at 2:42 PM Post #10,729 of 33,692
Aug 17, 2017 at 3:42 PM Post #10,730 of 33,692
I'm no expert in the subject, but... if the IEM has 4 drivers per side, isn't it more susceptible to differences in amp output impedance's and/or cable impedance's?

That would explain the many different opinions on the ZS5's.

I tend to think it is more related to poor sources (laptop) and phase issues.
 
Aug 17, 2017 at 3:56 PM Post #10,732 of 33,692
Hey guys. I am a classical music and metal fan. What's a good set of iems for under £100?
 
Aug 18, 2017 at 1:10 AM Post #10,733 of 33,692
My review of the fantastic NocturnaL Audio Atlantis is online: http://kopfhoerer-lounge.blogspot.com/2017/08/nocturnal-audio-atlantis-review.html



This review is written in German but there's a Google Translate widget right underneath the navigation bar. A (shortened) version in English for Head-Fi will go online very shortly, too.

And here it is:

 
Aug 18, 2017 at 11:43 AM Post #10,735 of 33,692
I'm not sure I'd necessarily call "lack of resolution" an issue with bass by nature of how bass works. I believe it's been shown that a little "looseness" in the low frequencies tends to sound more lifelike and less sterile.
 
Aug 18, 2017 at 12:35 PM Post #10,736 of 33,692
I'm not sure I'd necessarily call "lack of resolution" an issue with bass by nature of how bass works. I believe it's been shown that a little "looseness" in the low frequencies tends to sound more lifelike and less sterile.

Are you referring to the NocturnaL Atlantis? If so, it's bass is definitely fast and tight (same level as my UERM when it comes to speed, control, details and tightness), but I can see why people do like a little more body and softness at times when they want a more "natural" presentation of the bottom-end (aside from the objective side, I also personally enjoy hybrid and multi-BA IEMs with a rather soft bottom-end response - not for extremely critical listening but for casual listening and "enjoyment").

However compared to the mids and highs, "the last bit" in the lows seems to be missing - which it certainly isn't; it's just an impression generated by the superbly separated and resolving mids and highs. I guess that the tuning (some moderate fullness in the fundamental range and lower mids) is partially responsible for this impression (slight masking effect), but not exclusively.

Anyway, it's a pretty impressive IEM on the technical level, and even more so for the asking price.
 
Aug 18, 2017 at 2:17 PM Post #10,737 of 33,692
Are you referring to the NocturnaL Atlantis? If so, it's bass is definitely fast and tight (same level as my UERM when it comes to speed, control, details and tightness), but I can see why people do like a little more body and softness at times when they want a more "natural" presentation of the bottom-end (aside from the objective side, I also personally enjoy hybrid and multi-BA IEMs with a rather soft bottom-end response - not for extremely critical listening but for casual listening and "enjoyment").

However compared to the mids and highs, "the last bit" in the lows seems to be missing - which it certainly isn't; it's just an impression generated by the superbly separated and resolving mids and highs. I guess that the tuning (some moderate fullness in the fundamental range and lower mids) is partially responsible for this impression (slight masking effect), but not exclusively.

Anyway, it's a pretty impressive IEM on the technical level, and even more so for the asking price.

Well that's what I mean. I think that slight "lack of resolution" you're talking about might be intentional and to the product's benefit. I won't lie, the fact that you're talking about the last bit missing made me MORE interested, because in my experience headphones that have "razor sharp" bass (lookin' at you, HD800/800S) are far less organic and engaging than ones where it's a bit less so. I don't care about "critical listening," I listen to music. I listen for enjoyment and nothing else. I feel like "critical listening" is a buzzword that tries to excuse why a headphone isn't any fun but measures well. The kind of quality for when you just sit there picking apart minutiae instead of the cohesive whole. Trees vs forest, etc.

Like, your review 100% sold me on it. I've been looking at a bunch of Asian IEMs for months now, my previous goal was the Super Audio 7 driver, but your comments told me this is the one for me.
 
Last edited:
Aug 18, 2017 at 3:08 PM Post #10,738 of 33,692
I just love NocturnaL's sense of humour: :o2smile:

2017-08-18_210429.jpg
 
Aug 18, 2017 at 6:02 PM Post #10,739 of 33,692
Nothing like a $26 Chi-Fi DAP w/Album Art driving $213 Chi-Fi hybrid iem's:wink:

Slim Shockwave.JPG
 
Aug 18, 2017 at 6:24 PM Post #10,740 of 33,692
Are you referring to the newer B3s or the old B3 model? Have you had experience with both? They're both around $38 on Amazon right now. The FR graph provided by the manufacturer looks a lot nicer on the newer model B3s.

B3s graph is here: https://www.head-fi.org/threads/chi...phones-and-iems.820747/page-107#post-12939412
Don't let the graph scare you on these earphones. I didn't buy these for the longest time because I thought the graph made them look like they would be treble cannons, but my thoughts changed completely once I finally heard them. They are a VERY good cost/performance i.e.m.
 

Users who are viewing this thread

Back
Top