Knowledge Zenith (KZ) impressions thread
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eaglesgift

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Not sure if I should be asking here or the ChiFi thread...

I rather like the sound I'm getting from the KZ ZS5 I own but find comfort for extended listening not very good. I purchased the TFZ Exclusive 5 via Massdrop because I've seen reviews which led me to believe that they'd have a similar bass response but I'm not getting that. Additionally I have a personal issue with comfort from the standard style silicone ear tip. I'm guessing that its because the material does not allow my skin to breathe properly, as compared to Comply or even Chinese foam, so I end up with an itchy feeling if I wear the earphone over 45 minutes to an hour. I actually prefer them in general over the NuForce Primo 8 I got from Massdrop even though overall the Primo 8 has a flatter extended frequency response.

So a number of questions...
1) is there another good choice in IEM to get with a similar bass and sub bass sound signature? (I am awaiting delivery of a pair of ZS6 but I think I want something "more") I'm perfectly happy with something that isn't in the ChiFi category but about $200 is my upper limit.
2) ear tip or wear suggestions as to why the TFZ don't have much bass for me? I've been using in ear products for years, since the etymotic er 6 and before so I'm used to fiddling for the correct fit.
2a) ear tip suggestions above and beyond silicone, comply, Chinese foam, and KZ silicone (which I do find a bit more 'wearable' for me than other silicone tips.)
Iv'e got the Exclusive 5 and I was surprised by how much bass they have. I've used the shallow tips and the double flange tips that come with them and they sound great with both as far as bass is concerned. I think I'm getting a very close fit though, because I can hear some driver flex in the left side when inserting (my right ear canal just a little bigger I think). Did you try all the supplied tips?
 
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vector84

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2a) ear tip suggestions above and beyond silicone, comply, Chinese foam, and KZ silicone (which I do find a bit more 'wearable' for me than other silicone tips.)
I saw these a while back and thought to myself "but why?" but your commentary made me think of them again. I have never tried them! but seems like it's something out there enough that you might find it interesting for your situation.

plush tips - I feel like I found a better description and more sizes before and it had some rambling commentary about a special process to bond fleece to silicone - but this is all I could find this time:
https://www.aliexpress.com/store/pr...eeve-Ear-Tip-Earbuds/1825606_32763218632.html
 
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post-13780899
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CoiL

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ATE needs mods to sound the best.
True! They become single dynamic "beasts" when modded :wink:
If you're really sensitive to sibilance I can see how that would happen.
Though, I don`t own ZS6 (yet) I second that. I have pretty similar taste and hearing with SomeGuyDude in many related IEMs and I can see (hear) myself also outputting same opinion. And poor thing is - I hate using foamies - so, that`s not option for me. Probably would have to mod BA nozzle.
Apart from the stronger treble spike on the ZS6, their FR isn't even identical. The difference is in the upper mids that are less elevated on the ZS6, giving them a less distant and less hollow-ish appearance whereas the ZS5 v1 could sound a tad too artificial from time to time with more vocal-oriented tracks. That's why a mixture of the ZS6's lows and mids along with the ZS5 v1's highs would be an awesome combination. Dear Knowledge Zenith representatives, if you read along these lines, please make exactly that happen, but not by silently releasing a ZS6 v2 but a ZS7.
I hope they do it - otherwise I will do my own wooden mod ;D

Will stay on hold with buying ZS6.
 
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graphidz

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I just got my ZS5 a few days ago. I really like it, especially for the price. Too bad(maybe?) that I got the v1 of it. now i'm very tempted to open it up and try some mod (like maybe clear some of the glue, put in foam or even try and replace the BA driver to the nozzle or something lol. Too bad if I had some extra money, I could get a few pairs and mod the heck out of those. Being a starving student is hard.
 
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SomeTechNoob

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Treasure the ZS5 v1. From the plethora of reports the v1 seems much better than v2...
 
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graphidz

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Treasure the ZS5 v1. From the plethora of reports the v1 seems much better than v2...
I see. Guess I'll order the v2 in the future and mod the heck out of that. On another note, I wonder if this is a cheap way for DIY to get IEM drivers? That would be a neat idea tbh.
 
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CoiL

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I see. Guess I'll order the v2 in the future and mod the heck out of that. On another note, I wonder if this is a cheap way for DIY to get IEM drivers? That would be a neat idea tbh.
Getting drivers out of ZS5v1/v2 or ZS6 is PITA!!! You need some serious patience and proper tools to do that - they are full of dirty sticky blue glue!
 
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graphidz

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Getting drivers out of ZS5v1/v2 or ZS6 is PITA!!! You need some serious patience and proper tools to do that - they are full of dirty sticky blue glue!
Does reheating them so that the glue melt to remove them not very effective? I was thinking of wanting to clear some unnecessary glue (assuming it helps to make SQ better). But hey, I'm coming from a headphone modder, so most of my knowledge wouldn't apply probably lol/
 
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eaglesgift

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Treasure the ZS5 v1. From the plethora of reports the v1 seems much better than v2...
I like the v2, I thought it was an improvement on the v1.
 
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CoiL

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I like the v2, I thought it was an improvement on the v1.
To me and by many other reports it is opposite - v2 is actually downgrade regarding highs.
 
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High on Ketamine

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Zs3 are still a good choice with the launch of es3 for few dollars more? What about comfort of zs3, zst, es3?
I call the zs3 a nice cheap iem but if you want something better go with ES3. ZS3 sounds low-res in comparison and the bass can be so satisfying on ES3 :). Highs are also a bit more grown up. Zs3 is lowfi and es3 is more highfi. ES3 is slightly more comfortable but both are still a bit bulky for me
 
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eaglesgift

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To me and by many other reports it is opposite - v2 is actually downgrade regarding highs.
Yes I know. I'm just saying I don't agree. Or, to put other it another way, that's not been my experience.

What don't you like about the highs on the v2?
 
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CoiL

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Yes, of course, it`s subjective. If You are very sensitive to highs (Your hearing is not damaged by loud music etc.) then v1 seems better. Just many have found v2 highs due to 2BAs in nozzle way too much.
I`m just generalizing overall opinions on v1 vs v2.
 
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