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ejong7's Meet, Show and Factory Tour Impressions

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  1. 3 toes of fury
    Wonderful peek behind the curtain!  Thank you for sharing your experience and exploring with the Schiit gang!
     
    Schiit is, bar none, the absolute finest example i can name of customer satisfaction and product value.   They provide incredible audio gear for virtually all price points.  Jason's willingness to share his philosophies on this site goes above and beyond.   Im beyond satisfied with the schiit gear i run:  in my home office, bedroom, and office.
     
    Thanks again and thanks to the Schiit group for continued amazing products.  
     
    Peace .n. Living in Stereo
     
    #three Toes of Fury
     
  2. mtoc
    That chick is hot! Nay... it's a dude with long hair..
     
  3. tonykaz

    A+ for Alex,
     
    Wasn't this guy a School Teacher a short while ago?  Phew, he's turned a kinda dumpy little electronics outfit into a well organized machine. 
     
    Schiit's photos go all the way back to the Garage days, they're all posted on the internet, for gods sake!  
     
    Alex has one hell-of-a resume going, I wouldn't doubt that some Bosch guy is looking at these latest "snaps" say'n to his people that they need a guy ( like this ) in the Plant they're opening in LA or elsewhere.  Alex should and could be expecting visits from Headhunters offering $250,000 (Annual) plus $250,000 (Bonus) possibilities.  Clearly, Alex is Schiit's "Key" man. 
     
    Very nice work Mr.Alex,  you have a bright future ahead of you!
     
    Tony in Michigan
     
    ps.  I'm retired now, I won't be passing his name to my Lady CEO who already knows all about Schiit
     
  4. twister6 Contributor
     
    Really enjoyed your tour write-ups, amazing job, my friend!!!!!  I can't wait until the next one, which I have a suspicion could be about another company with 2-letters [​IMG]
     
  5. ejong7

    Haha probably. That is in the works. Though I have to be honest, spent too little time there, and not too much content available for me to write.
     
  6. ibbreezy
    Very informative write-up on EE. I had the same issue with the woods. Spent over a week trying to find one that wouldn't clash/detract from the artwork I wanted. In the end, I settled on normal coloured faceplates. Kudos to Jack and his team for sourcing and trying multiple woods though. 
     
  7. ejong7
    Effect Audio Tour Impressions (November 28th 2016)
    Preface
    I would like to thank Eric Chong, Suyang Zou and the rest of the Effect Audio team (@EffectAudio) for allowing me to visit their facilities which allowed me to learn more about their operations first-hand. Special thanks to Eric and Suyang who both spent some of their working hours talking to me and trying to provide me with a better overview of the brand known as Effect Audio and a general overview of the high-quality earphone cables manufacturing industry.
     
    Also, due to my lack of functional memory storage in my brain, I somehow manage to forget to take pictures to allow for a better feel of the tour. I will be using pictures from the best source in the world – the Internet. So, no, it wasn’t because Effect Audio had a top secret project that I would have to face impeding death if I were leak out any details of it. Well, at least they didn’t show me any of that.
     
    Tour Impressions
    When I first researched and found out about the whereabouts of the Effect Audio office, I was caught off guard by the location – Paya Lebar Square. My local friends had informed me that it was a mall of sorts, but never had I thought that the mall and the office itself will be under the same building.
     
    PayaLebarSquare1-13.jpg
    To provide a visual aid, this was what I didn’t expect, but eventually found, for the office area to be.
     
    After asking for some directions to get to the right office lot, I found myself at the doorstep of the office, right on dot of the previously scheduled time with Eric. There, Eric was present to greet me and welcome me into the office. He courteously informed me that the rest of the team had went out for a break, but would come back later, which will allow me the chance of meeting the team.
     
    The office was, according to my estimation, between 500 to 600 square feet in size. The space was mainly divided into two rooms, where one serves as the Premium Lounge, while the other is the actual manufacturing work space. The Premium Lounge consisted of a comfy couch, with a long table at roughly sitting-knee height which on top houses a few of the cables available for demo on the day. It also has a front desk available which I assume is where most of the day to day customer discussions are handled.
     
    As I sat on the couch, Eric proceeded to explain to me about Effect Audio in more detail. Suyang joined in soon after, chiming in his view and opinions of the company as a founder. It was easy to see their determination and insistence on high quality product. For example, their products are made from audiophile grade wiring rather than medical grade wiring because they felt it produced the better sound although it’s slightly pricier. Another example is in their 2-pin plugs that are specifically manufactured to be more robust and sturdy than the conventional one but still easy to remove. At the time, they were also working on a y-splitter that was slimmer in profile, making it lighter but maintaining the same quality, which was an improvement they decided upon listening to feedback from their customers.
     
    900x900px-LL-b5daac16_948687FB-36A3-494E-AA28-5B4D945D2C38.jpg
    This photo, courtesy of Effect Audio, shows the size difference between the old and new y-splitter. Basically, it is now half the size and weight.
     
    After our short discussion, the duo took out a couple of samples from their product list for me to audition. I also asked for an audition of the Effect Audio Arthur, as I thought it would be nice to be able to compare the Arthur and its original design the Empire Ears Zeus-R.
     
    Line-up Impressions
    The following list of impressions is based on the products that I was able to demo on the day. The listening impressions were made using my custom Empire Ears Zeus-R paired with my Questyle QP1R. For the record, my Zeus-R was equipped with the stock cable (at the time) which is the BTG Starlight cable.
     
    All images are the product images that I obtained from the Effect Audio website.
     
    Effect Audio Arthur
    hkavshow_2016-02_1__1.jpg
    The release image of the Effect Audio Arthur, which includes the Arthur (of course) and its pairing cable the Effect Audio Excalibur.
     
    This is a rather interesting product from the company as it is actually an IEM that was made in collaboration with the folks at Empire Ears, where similar project was previously explored with Vision Ears. Naturally, the one that I listened to was in a universal fit.
     
    The fit on the Universal Arthur was great, so good that I actually thought it was sized differently than a regular universal fit Zeus/Zeus-R, something I later disproved upon discussion with Jack Vang from Empire Ears. From my short audition, I felt the Arthur was slightly more detailed and spacious than a universal Zeus, but this is based on memory and not a direct side-by-side comparison. I also felt that the hiss issue I found on the stock Empire Ears Zeus/Zeus-R has slightly reduced, and while it has not 100% vanish it was a great step forward. When compared to my own Zeus-R, I felt that my Zeus-R had better separation and places the instruments more accurately while the Arthur provides a fuller sound signature, especially in the mids.
     
    Effect Audio Excalibur
    Do note that this particular cable was specifically designed and manufactured with the Arthur in mind, and unless the plans have changed, will not be available for standalone purchase.
     
    I found my custom Zeus-R to receive the same improvements that the Arthur had over the original Zeus/Zeus-R, in which it has a more detailed, more spacious sound but at the same time produces less hiss. The sound is also comparatively smoother on the highs and lows than the stock configuration. The mids felt a little more forward than normal, with it remaining lush yet never over the top.
     
    Effect Audio Leonidas
    leonidas_-_1.jpg
    Effect Audio Leonidas
     
    With this particular cable, the sound coming from my Zeus-R sounds more organic than its stock configuration, which is saying something. There is more details coming through than stock, and it sounds fuller in the lower registers. There is a significant increase in treble quantity which makes me think that the cable is aimed at consumers who prefer a more treble heavy sound from their gear. However, the Leonidas do not have the same forward mids I got from the Excalibur and not as lush as well.
     
    Effect Audio Eros II+
    eros2_.jpg
    Effect Audio Eros II +
     
    This is based on the Eros II+ that has a thicker gauge. With the Eros, I found the sound to be less detailed than the Leonidas but more detailed than stock. It still maintains a mid-forward sound, something that I found could be the Effect Audio house sound, but is a bit less forward than the Leonidas though it maintained the engagement and liveliness. Compared to stock, there was an obvious boost in the lower end. At the treble side, it is less extended than the Leonidas. With the thinner gauge one, I found the mid-forward nature to be pulled back even more, which might have caused the boost in the lower registers to be more prominent.
     
    Effect Audio Thor Silver II
    thorsilver2_1.jpg
    Effect Audio Thor Silver II
     
    Do note there are different versions of the Thor that uses different materials. The sound coming from the Thor has great treble extension but less of a bass boost than the other cables I heard on the day. I felt that it was less detailed than the Leonidas, but more so than both Eros that I heard.
     
    Final Remarks
    Unfortunately, I had another appointment set for later that day, and had to cut short my visit. I would have loved to be able to audition the products for a little longer as the products have left a sizable impression on me but I digress. Just before I left, Suyang got me an Effect Audio t-shirt as a gift, which I thought was a kind gesture seeing that I have already impeded on his working hours for this visit.
     
    I would like to take this opportunity to once again show my appreciation to Effect Audio for allowing my short tour. Thank you and I wish the Effect Audio team the best because only the best would suffice for such a great team.
     
    Vitor Valeri, ryanjsoo, Cagin and 2 others like this.
  8. Dellwolf
    Eric is an awesome guy, I met him at Canjam NYC and I have the Arthur for review right now. My review should be done soon.
     
  9. EffectAudio
    Effect Audio Stay updated on Effect Audio at their sponsor page on Head-Fi.
     
    https://www.facebook.com/effectaudiosg/ https://twitter.com/EffectAudio http://www.effectaudio.com/ eric@effectaudio.com
  10. spw1880
    Hi effect audio,

    I have been using your thor II+ going on a couple months now. Just gets better clarity as time goes by, enjoying it everyday.

    I would like to know if there any plans in the future to release a version of the leonidas in a 22awg..as i do prefer the aesthetics of a thicker guage.

    Thank you.
     
  11. ejong7
    Jomo Audio Tour Impressions (November 29th 2016)
    Preface
    Many thanks towards Joseph Mou and the rest of Jomo Audio team for entertaining my request for a visit to their office, allowing me a chance to delve into the inner workings of the company to obtain a deeper understanding of their operations. Special thanks to Joseph Mou who took time out of his working hours to explain and discuss about his company at length.
     
    This time, I did remember to take pictures of the products that I was able to audition. However, as I did not ask permission to take pictures of the facilities, I refrained myself from taking them during my visit.
     
    Tour Impressions
    I first reached out to Joseph Mou about a possible visit to his facilities a couple of weeks before the proposed date, which he soon agreed to. The Jomo Audio office is located at the Zervex building, which is located at the industrial area of Singapore, some place that I haven’t actually been to. A member of the Jomo Audio team (Sorry, I honestly don’t recall his name anymore) welcomed me into the office, where I was soon introduced to the man leading the team – Joseph Mou.
     
    As I sat the table, I was able to take a look around the entire office. The entire room could be separated into four sections: the office desk area where all the administration work is done, the IEM lab where all the handcrafted pieces are made, the storage area which is perhaps the largest area and the long table that I was sat at, probably to house people like me who are coming for a visit. Judging by the amount of storage needed, I could safely say that the demand on Jomo Audio products should be pretty high, with the team trying their best to provide enough supply.
     
    Joseph, seated to my side, started explaining about the history of Jomo Audio, then brought out a box containing the IEMs that he would like to have a listen to, along with another box that showcases the test samples of the faceplates being made for the IEMs. I found the faceplates made to be in amazing quality, seeing that it was only samples to test out the colour patterns that would be formed.
     
    Line-up Impressions
    I listened to the Jomo Audio IEMs one by one using my trusty Questyle QP1R. All the IEMs are auditioned using the tips provided by Jomo Audio, for reasons that I will cover below.
     
    Jomo Audio Line-Up
    In between auditions, I would ask Joseph to find out more about the general direction envisioned for Jomo Audio. These are general comments about the entire line-up that were discussed in between the multiple auditions, and I’ve decided that it could perhaps be seen clearer if I compiled it in a point-form format. So here are a few things I’ve learned about Jomo Audio:
    1. Jomo Audio used to only apply Knowles drivers in their design. They have since moved on to use Sonion and Knowles drivers in their IEMs. However, I did not ask nor was I revealed about the specific drivers used in the IEMs, perhaps to maintain confidentiality.
    2. The Jomo 6, 5 and 4 that were updated to V2 uses different drivers than their original configuration.
    3. The shells for each IEM from Jomo Audio are never exactly the same from one to another, and are completely built in their headquarters in Singapore to maintain its build quality.
    4. The orders for Jomo Audio are mainly handled by their dealers, with some dealers ordering pre-made universal units to supply the huge demand for Jomo IEMs.
    5. Jomo Audio handcrafts about 40 IEMs a month, but this value should be seeing an increase as steps had been made to increase production.
    6. The stock cables supplied for Jomo IEMs (except the Samba) are grey (or graphite) in colour to maintain its visual quality due to the oxidation that occurs in the silver plated copper cables.
    7. The designs of each IEM are based on the other models in which each model does not sound exactly the same to create a more comprehensive line-up to cover for all users with different taste.
    8. At the time of visit, Joseph does not see hybrid or pure dynamic driver designs joining the Jomo Audio line-up.
    9. Double flange tips are preferred for their demo and universal units. SpinFits were previously considered but Joseph felt that the opening was too small which increases the treble but reduces the bass, which does not fit his tuning. The double flange tips have slightly larger openings.
     
    Jomo Audio Samba
    20161129_135621.jpg
    The demo unit of the Jomo Audio Samba, paired with the Effect Audio Ares cable.
     
    The Samba, as its flagship status deserve, is very different compared to the offerings from Jomo Audio. It is internally wired with the same material used to produce the Effect Audio Ares II cable, paired with the Ares II as its stock cable as well.
     
    The Samba is an 8 driver model, with dual low, dual mid and quad high for its driver configuration. To me, the sound signature of the Samba is a sound that in between the 6R and the 6. What do I mean by that? It is a touch warmer than neutral, definitely warmer than the more reference sounding 6R, but is brighter and more neutral than the 6. It is an organic sound, with lush mids and great extension at both the lower and upper registers.
     
    Jomo Audio 6R
    20161129_135657.jpg
    The demo unit of the Jomo Audio 6R, paired with the stock Jomo Audio cable.
     
    The 6R is one of Jomo’s two 6 driver model, with a single dual high, dual single mid and a single dual vented low for its driver configuration. It has a sound signature that is the most ‘reference’, in which it has a slight treble focus. It was very clear but has more relaxed mids, especially when compared to the Samba. The soundstage is wide, perhaps one of the widest that I’ve come to hear from one of these ‘reference’ pieces.
     
    Jomo Audio 6 (V2)
    20161129_135712.jpg
    The demo unit of the Jomo Audio 6, paired with the stock Jomo Audio cable.
     
    The 6 is Jomo’s other 6 driver model, which has a driver configuration of a single sub, dual low, single mid, single high and a single super high; hence with its completely different drivers, it has a completely different sound signature than the 6R. The sound signature aimed for this model is more V-shaped, with its bass being more prominent than that of the 6R, but its treble is less tamed than the Samba’s. When compared to the 6R and the Samba, the treble detail is less present but still enough in quantity to satisfy the treble heads out there. The bass detail on the 6 is simply outstanding, with enough thump and impact to keep bass lovers on their feet while the mids felt a little more forward than that of the 6R. The soundstage is less wide than the 6R.
     
    Jomo Audio 5 (V2)
    20161129_135726.jpg
    The demo unit of the Jomo Audio 5, paired with the stock Jomo Audio cable.
     
    The 5 driver model in the Jomo line-up, it has dual low, dual mid and one high driver. I found that the 5 is probably the heaviest in bass within the line-up, with it having even more bass presence the 6.  The treble is more subdued than the 6, which allows for the soundstage, one which I found just a touch less in width and depth with the 6, to be enveloped more by the bass, but never to the point of sounding muddy. The mids on the 5 I found to be rich sounding, perhaps slightly thicker than the 6. I feel that the 6 is a clearer version of the 5 for my taste, but the 5 would be the best choice within the line-up for bass-heads because the level of bass detail is similar if not better than the 6.
     
    Jomo Audio 4 (V2)
    20161129_140912.jpg
    The demo unit of the Jomo Audio 4, paired with the stock Jomo Audio cable.
     
    For the Jomo 4, it is equipped with one low, two mid and one high driver. The overall sound is that of a smooth sound, and perhaps the most neutral and balanced across the Jomo board. It actually sounds like a baby Samba to me, with less warmth so that it’s tilted towards more to a flatter sound. It has ample extension on both the higher registers and the lower registers for me.  The width and depth of the soundstage is equal if not better than the 5, perhaps due to the reduction in bass quantity and an increase in the treble quantity, which allowed me to better feel of the soundstage.
     
    Jomo Audio Pretty Little Beast (PLB)
    20161129_141445.jpg
    The demo unit of the Jomo Audio Pretty Little Beast (PLB), paired with the stock Jomo Audio cable.
    DSC04610_1024x1024.jpg
    The contents of the entire Jomo Audio PLB package, including a leather presentation box, an aluminium carrying case and various tips among other accessories. The picture was obtained from the Jomo Audio website.
     
    I was allowed an early audition of the PLB, the one released in last December’s Potafes in Tokyo, Japan. I was told that it was targeted towards listeners who prefer dance, EDM or any sort of music that has more of a bass focus. It has a 3 driver design, with one low, one mid and one high. However, it sounds completely different than their other 3 driver design, the Jomo 3. For the time being, or at least when we last discussed this, it will only be available in universal format.
     
    The beautiful face plate used for the PLB is a Japanese hybrid opal face plate, and it will be released with an aluminium carrying case of a similar blue palate. The sound signature is actually quite W in shape, which somehow reminded me of the Audio Technica ATH W3000ANV sound, although admittedly it has been a long time since I last heard the W3000ANV. It has an amazingly wide and deep soundstage for a 3 driver, and whiles its being tuned to be more powerful in the bass region; I found it to sound clear for the targeted signature.
     
    When I was auditioning the PLB, it was the only model that I auditioned to using single flange tips. The single flange tips had stems that were almost of the hybrid tip build, which makes the tip slightly stiffer, and helps with the bass according to Joseph. However, according to the website, the PLB would be packaged with a set of double flange and a set of tornado silicon ear tips.  So it’s either Joseph has since successfully tuned the PLB to the same sound using his preferred dual flange tips format, or the Tornado silicon tips, which I failed to find information for, is Jomo’s preferred version of the single flange tips. Please contact the kind folks at Jomo Audio for more information about that if you’re interested as I do not want to provide you all with incorrect information.
     
    Jomo Audio 3
    20161129_141952.jpg
    The demo unit of the Jomo Audio 3, which was the original 3 driver design before the emergence of the Jomo Audio PLB.
     
    The last IEM I auditioned, the Jomo 3, is a 3 driver design with a mid/high driver and two low drivers. It felt like the sound is more controlled than the PLB. I found the original 3 driver design to have a slightly mid forward tilt with a less pronounced treble, but maintained a smooth sound throughout. However, I soon found out that it would be updated to sound similar to the PLB, or at least that was the plan then.
     
    Final Remarks
    Due to my impending flight back home, I had to call time on my visit to Jomo Audio. Having been impressed by the (then) current line-up that Joseph and his team had to offer, I regretted not planning for a later flight so that I could audition the IEMs for a longer period of time. As a parting gift, Joseph decided to grab a Jomo Audio t-shirt for me, which was very nice of him, adding another great piece to my expanding collection.
     
    Once again, I would like to thank the kindness and generosity of Joseph Mou and the rest of the Jomo Audio team for allowing me the chance to obtain a better insight of the company and its direction.  Best wishes to Jomo Audio moving forward, and thank you all for the great experience.
     
  12. project86 Contributor
    Great thread! So far all companies that I highly respect. It's great to get an inside scoop like this, as most of us are not in a position to do so (geographically). Thank you for your effort!
     
  13. AbbyQ
    [​IMG]Wonderful job!!!  Thanks for sharing.
     
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