FiiO FD5 - 1DD Flagship from FiiO
Jan 30, 2021 at 10:54 AM Post #632 of 1,473

TWidXugA

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A comparison between them?

@RikudouGoku has a good comparison between the Fiio FD5 and the LZ A7 here, that includes two A7 configurations (my two favorite btw). For the most part I concur with his observations.

My own take on the two IEMs, having burned in the FD5 only ~48 hours, though it changed significantly and might still change further, is that the FD5 is more natural than the A7, has a bigger bass, bigger soundstage, and comes close in treble extension. The FD5 has an extremely fast dynamic driver, to a point where its mids remind me sometimes of the Tin P1 on a good source, though slightly pushed back, and that is a very good thing IMO. However, the A7 is master of resolution (even in bass) and treble extension, so it has the upper hand on raw technicalities. I found the sound of the A7 extremely addictive with all the texture it reveals, while I find the sound of the FD5 to be closer to being "there" in the audience. Both taught me a few things about layering, which in my view they do very well. It's possible to make a case for the FD5 and A7 being complimentary.

Overall, I recommend getting the A7 if what you are looking for is technical performance or if you are a newcomer to its price range, and the Fiio FD5 if you value coherency and naturalness. The A7 is also quite natural sounding and coherent, especially considering that it is a tribrid, though not in the same league of the FD5's single DD in those respects. But, considering all the A7's tuning options, it is definitely the safer bet. That is not to say that the FD5 is not detailed or resolving, it is very much so, it is just that detail is the speciality of the A7.

Btw, I am one of the few that did not find the FD5 fatiguing at all, nor do I miss a copper cable. The stock cable is excellent. I use the vocal tips though. Burn in so far made the mids come to life and become fully textured (no longer lean), and the sound is now more coherent across the entire frequency range, though I'm still shy of the 100-200 hours recommended.
 
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Jan 30, 2021 at 10:58 AM Post #633 of 1,473

RikudouGoku

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@RikudouGoku has a good comparison between the Fiio FD5 and the LZ A7 here, that includes two A7 configurations (my two favorite btw). For the most part I concur with his observations.

My own take on the two IEMs, having burned in the FD5 only ~48 hours, though it changed significantly and might still change further, is that the FD5 is more natural than the A7, has a bigger bass, bigger soundstage, and comes close in treble extension. The FD5 has an extremely fast dynamic driver, to a point where its mids remind me sometimes of the Tin P1 on a good source, though slightly pushed back, and that is a very good thing IMO. However, the A7 is master of resolution (even in bass) and treble extension, so it has the upper hand on raw technicalities. I found the sound of the A7 extremely addictive with all the texture it reveals, while I find the sound of the FD5 to be closer to being "there" in the audience. Both taught me a few things about layering, which in my view they do very well. It's possible to make a case for the FD5 and A7 being complimentary.

Overall, I recommend getting the A7 if what you are looking for is technical performance or if you are a newcomer to its price range, and the Fiio FD5 if you value coherency and naturalness. The A7 is also quite natural sounding and coherent, especially considering that it is a tribrid, though not in the same league of the FD5's single DD in those respects. But, considering all the A7's tuning options, it is definitely the safer bet. That is not to say that the FD5 is not detailed or resolving, it is very much so, it is just that detail is the speciality of the A7.

Btw, I am one of the few that did not find the FD5 fatiguing at all, nor do I miss a copper cable. The stock cable is excellent. I use the vocal tips though. Burn in so far made the mids come to live and become fully textured (no longer lean), and the sound is now more coherent across the entire frequency range, though I'm still shy of the 100-200 hours recommended.
yeah, the A7 is the safer rec and the better option for people that are entering this price range for the first time. The FD5 is as you say, more natural.
 
Jan 30, 2021 at 1:49 PM Post #634 of 1,473

CT007

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I'm at ~107 hours on mine. Nothing but aural amazement out of these things. Tried a copper cable, but I found that I prefer not having any of the detail/treble masked/softened, actually, so the stock cable gets another +1 for me.

Compared to several ~$0-200 IEMs I've heard/have, and several headphones up to ~$500, FD5 is like 4K, and everything else is like 720-1080p. Especially in spatial performance in-game, wow. And you thought your DT990/X2/AD1000X/300 R/Sundara/HD660 were great!

Looks like my A7, Orb and Fan are arriving Wednesday, finally! :headphones:
 
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Jan 31, 2021 at 3:22 AM Post #635 of 1,473

walkmanforever

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I am falling in love with the way they sound after 35+ hrs. At first they sounded a little hollow in the upper mids with less focused imaging and veiled treble. Now everything is polished and the mids are natural and lush as opposed to dry and thin like the Yamaha HS8 monitors. They capture the complete essence of the Honey H1 and the mids are very sweet sounding with a grandious bass presence and a sparkly treble that extends with an air. I am enjoying the way it layers and uses the H1 to its full potential. A solid pairing with the warm and lush H1.

While my desktop setup, the Burson Conductor 3xp and the Arya is technically marvellous and addictive, this one sounds seductive and captivating. Different flavours for a discerning audiophile.
 
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Feb 1, 2021 at 7:12 AM Post #637 of 1,473

CT007

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Is this a good IEM for someone like me who is a detail monster as well as one who likes all genres?
For sure. I haven't heard anywhere near as much detail and texture as these have, below their price. Certainly not the Tape Pro. Might not quite be HD800 level detail, if that's what you need.
 
Feb 1, 2021 at 7:33 AM Post #638 of 1,473

Lespectraal

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For sure. I haven't heard anywhere near as much detail and texture as these have, below their price. Certainly not the Tape Pro. Might not quite be HD800 level detail, if that's what you need.

I just read your other comment above, and it really is that detailed huh? How does this track sound to you on the FD5 if I may ask?


I have a huge need to press the order button on my app now.
 
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Feb 1, 2021 at 9:15 AM Post #639 of 1,473

Ra97oR

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Comparing raw detail on a single DD IEM, the Final A8000 is still a clear league above the FD5. But depends if you like the tuning or not.


I will rank them like that
Details: A8000 >> FH5 >> Periodic Be > EX800ST
 
Feb 1, 2021 at 1:54 PM Post #640 of 1,473

Bitsir

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Ditched the stock silver cable for a generic, free copper cable I had laying around. I also put on the bass tips.

This completely tamed the scissor 5-9k situation I was experiencing before and added much needed weight and richness to the bass up through the mids. Mids are also more vibrant. Probably lost a smidge of transparency and brilliance, but those qualities were masked by nasty brightness and peaky response anyway.

The copper cable makes things so much better. Every note has been infused with weight and substance and due to this, the imaging has improved like the notes are better anchored to their origin. Less distanced and less ethereal.

I'm now looking around for a $150-200 quality copper cable that adds as much bass and body to the sound as possible. So far, this one seems very promising:

https://www.null-audio.com/collecti...tiburon-upocc-cryo-copper-headphone-iem-cable
 
Feb 1, 2021 at 2:43 PM Post #642 of 1,473

Bitsir

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Thanks, I've read that you're the cable guy around these parts so I'll trust your judgement.

Too bad the cable you linked looks so generic..
 
Feb 1, 2021 at 2:53 PM Post #643 of 1,473

Dsnuts

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Actually Cema uses top of line stuff on their connectors Y split and terminations. You can choose which plug you want and such. Each cable is made to order so you get exactly what you want. 1612208730557.png1612208760248.png

There are certainly folks more experienced than me when it comes to cables but I do my share of cable reviews and have a good understanding what cables do for sound. Reason why I am showing this link to Cema Electro acousti is because, these guys are using pretty much the same stuff boutique dealers are using but will cost you less. I get that these guys might use generic components but who cares as long as the workmanship and sound is top notch. I have several cables made by these guys and they are all top stuff. Never had any issue with any of em.
 
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Feb 1, 2021 at 8:55 PM Post #645 of 1,473

CT007

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I just read your other comment above, and it really is that detailed huh? How does this track sound to you on the FD5 if I may ask?

I have a huge need to press the order button on my app now.
Haven't heard this artist/song :) Let's see... (Using my fav combo: stock cable + wide tube + bass tips)

I would say I can hear pretty deep into it. Little clicks & pops on the right side. Clearly distinguishable distortion effects, from various instruments. Deep, thumpy bass taking charge, that sounds rather generic/synthetic(as if not a real instrument, with not much texture or depth at all 😥). I'd say the bass level is too high in this song, if I'm critiquing it. The soft buzzing has now moved center, slightly left, with some synth bells and like a soft square wave pitching up & down on the right side. The big, generic bass is back to play with his new friends. There's sounds happening in pretty much all directions now at the same time. A scratchy little insect-like sound on left that sounds crispy. :xf_smile: Some heavier drone buzz taking over the bass for a little bit. Light hi-hat hits happening in center, forward a little. I hear some voices off in the distance at the end, but for the most part all the sounds sound relatively nearby. All sounds sadly seemed polished/warmed too much, lacking the incredible texture & detail I crave to hear from FD5, and I didn't notice anything outstandingly high-resolution, 'raw'/bright/sharp, or spatially very interesting/pleasing. It was alright, I guess. =P
 
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