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Knowledge Zenith (KZ) impressions thread

  1. Slater
    At $1/set, you can always try both. I have found that on ATE and ATR the whirlwinds work best (Tennmak Whirlwind > KZ Whirlwind). YMMV though.

    The secret is to push them all the way down so the nozzle is even with the tip, like this:


    This allows the sound to be as close to the eardrum as possible (=awesomeness).

    Obviously, you can experiment with what works for you though. The above is advice @CoiL has been giving for years now, and I have found it is solid advice. He is the definitive ATE/ATR whisperer :)
    Last edited: May 3, 2018
    rokushoo likes this.
  2. maxxevv
    At the most recent Aliexpress sale, with a combination of shop discount + coupons + total value purchase discount(s), I paid about US$28/- for mine.

    I paid just under US$30/- for the ZS10 in the same purchase.

    From what I've read from your descriptions and what I have experienced of the ZS10 myself, you need better source/ playback gear. That iPhone of yours doesn't cut it with the ZS10.

    Its pretty dull sounding straight off a normal handphone jack, even with volume pushed a little. It comes on its own with some extra power delivered to it.

    Straight off phone jack, it was sounding less than impressive but on "external device" mode on my LG G6, it begins to shine. Then it came on its own when I plugged it into my portable DAC amp based on the 9028Q2M that is rated at 1W @ 16 Ohm. And it was a really sweet sounding thing plugged into my 9038Pro based desktop DAC Amp. You get all those layers that you never expect to hear from any audio transducer at this price range.

    Phone Jack > "External Device"mode > 1W@16 Ohm portable DAC > Desktop DAC Amp.

    Also, its isolation isn't anywhere near that great. A lot of the details and nuances just can't be discerned while listening to them on the move. Unless I turned the volume up. Its shallow nozzle and bulbous shape probably made things even more difficult in getting a good seal.
    Lorspeaker and HungryPanda like this.
  3. Otto Motor
    The ZS10 is not source sensitive...it may tighten the bass a bit but that's it.

    See here:

    And I have used different sources as you could have read in my review:

    What would possibly help is lower-quality ears.
    Bartig and SciOC like this.
  4. slowth
  5. SciOC
    How do you feel about the zs10 versus it01? Honestly I think the zs10 has more detail and better staging, but isn't tuned as well. I'm wondering if you got a particularly crappy pair.... I got a blue pair so maybe you got a lemon (your review shows a black pair).... Also, I've mainly used my cayin n3, so I may even be understimating how recessed the mids are.... Not as bad as nuforce EDC, but definitely could have been tweaked. EQ helps a lot to center vocals.....
  6. Slater
    I think you meant:

    Desktop DAC Amp > 1W@16 Ohm portable DAC > "External Device"mode > Phone Jack
  7. ChaoticKinesis
    I don't have the ATRs so I can't speak specifically of those but FWIW I find that very few IEMs work well with the Whirlwinds. They have a very wide and short tube so they tend to slip off most earphones and when they don't slip off, they may still slide back and forth. Then there's the question of whether they'll make a good seal when they do fit. OTOH the Starlines are the exact opposite with a much narrower and longer tube so they tend to stay put. I also find them very easy to get a good seal with.

    I understand you were talking about what sound you want from your tips but sound is irrelevant until you get the fit right. Honestly, you can get both Starlines and Whirlwinds on Aliexpress for ~$1 so why not try both.

    There are plenty of other good tips out there but many of them cost more. Personally, I use either Starlines or JVC Spiral Dots on all my earphones because they're among the few that are large enough to give me a good seal.
    Last edited: May 3, 2018
    mbwilson111 and rokushoo like this.
  8. rokushoo
    Thanks guys! I will get myself a set of each and see what I like better. As Slater mentioned at $1 a set i won't be loosing much if they don't work for me. I'm currently using a set of tips from some cheap Walmart iem that broke a while ago. I think the ATR sounds a little better using them than with the stock tips, but I still want to try out some other tips with them.
  9. durwood
    I would rule that out, his measurements posted in his review are pretty darn close to what I measured for the red ones. I would just call it a case of different ears, different folks.
    Last edited: May 3, 2018
  10. TLDRonin
    Team America was something else...
    DocHoliday and Slater like this.
  11. sino8r
    I like to push mine all the way down too. The only set I've had an issue with that though are the ZS6 (probably due to the odd shape). I did try something new with my ZS6s over the past couple of days. I covered half of the inner vent (like y'all suggested several pages back) with clear tape. Tried that for a day with a little improvement. Today I also took off the torx screws and covered half of the outer vents with tape as well. The bottom half. I also tried a large set of comply isolating buds (TX500) and didn't push them into all the way. I matched the bottom with the line on the nozzle like they should be. Normally, I'll just use medium sized foam tips and slide them all the way. The closer the better usually. For some reason, the large TX500s seemed to sound better plus I didn't have to try and manipulate the IEMS to fit as much. Normally with the ZS6s, it's an angry dance or battle to get these suckers to fit nice and tight. I'm pleasantly surprised! Highly recommended setup here.
    Slater likes this.
  12. bsoplinger
    My pair of iBasso IT01 took very close to 200 hours of burn-in to get the recessed mids to move forward. Or to say it differently, for the depth of the V frequency response curve to reduce significantly. I, as typical it seems with KZ designs, had real fitment issues with the ZS10. Once I found a good seal and had some bass I felt that they sounded better than those who really disliked it described. But nowhere near what you get from the iBasso. The phase difference between the DD and the midrange BA contributes to the lower quality sound. With the right, or perhaps I should say wrong, combination of instruments and vocals that phrase incoherence can be frighteningly bad. If your music choice doesn't hit the problem they sound decent with a seemingly shallow V curve. But then you change music choice and that V deepens. For me at least the mids generally are too recessed to make them enjoyable.
    Bartig likes this.
  13. vegetaleb
    Finally got my ZSR yesterday, the nozzles are a bit too long, so I tried with the ear tips that were on them and the fit was awful, tried with the medium tips that were in the bag, they are a bit better but still I feel like the earphones are floating in my ears :frowning2:
    I was expecting the ZSR to have the same fit than my ZS3 that were perfect, but until now I didn't find the right ear tips or memory wire angle, any tricks?
    I can't give my idea about the SQ as long as the fit is not good
  14. Slater
    You can push the tip further down on the nozzle (as far as it will go), which will help address your issue.

    Also try a tip with a shorter core, which will bring the IEM closer to your ear and get rid of the 'floating' feel. The below example are double-flange tips, but the core in the center is what you want to pay attention to (you want one like the left tip):

    Dual Flange Inserion Depth.jpg
    Last edited: May 4, 2018
    MDH12AX7 likes this.
  15. vegetaleb
    Will try it once at home
    BTW I feel the tips given in the bag were not made for the ZSR nozzles, it took me 15mns to put the left one, it was too tight for the nozzle
    Last edited: May 4, 2018
    Slater likes this.

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