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Knowledge Zenith (KZ) impressions thread

  1. KainHighwind
    Maybe they have some black magic with the drivers configuration and boom, ED16 is different than ZSR. :D
  2. Bartig
    I wouldn't put my money on the ED16. I mean, the IEM is called ED16, but has ZS7 on the shells. So either KZ wanted to put it higher in the market but then rebranded it, or KZ just lost track of it's own naming. In any way: there seems to be very little effort in this one.

    Will share impressions as I receive my KZ ES4. :)
    hydroid likes this.
  3. mbwilson111
    I guess I prefer a more neutral signature then...and yet, some of the iems I like have been described as V-shape like the IT01 and I love that one.

    All this is making me sad that my husband ordered the ZSA for himself and not for me. They are so cute but no point in having a second pair in the house. Plus we have not even heard them yet.
    HungryPanda likes this.
  4. ssnjrthgr8
    Yeah here is a side by side comparison, it's way smaller.


    Image source:

    Last edited: May 24, 2018
  5. Vestat
    Following the links on the video there is also a review os the ES4. Just a quick one but still a review.
  6. Strat Rider
    The idea of a shell change with the same drivers inside is an interesting marketing approach if that is the case.

    I have still not found a definitive answer of the physical driver differences between the ES3 and the ZST.

    When the ES3 was being previewed, some sources made mention of a 1mm larger DD in the ES3 vs ZST. I have never opened either of them, but is the DD/BA combination same or different?:thinking:

    (edited for verbage)
    Last edited: May 24, 2018
  7. toddy0191
    Received mine this afternoon, had a quick listen and am liking what I hear. Bass is very prominent and they don't seem like treble cannons.

    Will keep listening tonight at some point.

    Really like the look of them in cyan!
    MDH12AX7, hydroid and Bartig like this.
  8. MyPants
    It looks to me like ED15/16 are the same driver arrangements as ES4/ZSR but without removable cables, simpler shells, and MAYBE (speculating completely) a more cheaply implemented crossover design (back to sticking it on the DD rather than a board with hookup wire). Overall they look like kz is trying to hit a different customer with slightly different priorities at a slightly lower price.
    Bartig likes this.
  9. MyPants
    ZST uses an 8mm (IIRC) DD while ES3 uses a 10mm DD. I'm not 100% sure if the BAs are the same between the two, but the ES3s treble sounds more natural than ZST so who knows. Could easily be a filter change or psychoacoustics.
    Last edited: May 24, 2018
    Strat Rider and Ynot1 like this.
  10. durwood
    A few posts back -rumor was that they tweaked the crossover to fix the valley and something else (more neutral tuning?)....again only a rumor.

    EDIT: I searched high and low for the post but cannot find it...maybe it was a different thread. Maybe it is just wishful thinking.
    Last edited: May 24, 2018
    MyPants likes this.
  11. MyPants
    I really do wish those roughly translated promotional images were more helpful, but ultimately I understand why they wouldn't want to publish their crossover points. With that info it would be easy for UiiSii, Xiomi, etc. to run some math and figure out the capacitor values to implement the same crossover given their own drivers' impedance.
  12. Slater
    ED16 has removable 2-pin cables:


    That's why I am confused. Same 10mm size DD as ZSR, a crossover, plastic shell, and removable cable. Seems redundant.

    Obviously, there could be minor differences - a different diaphragm material compared to the ZSR (like graphene, beryllium, or titanium for example), different tuning via vent holes and crossover, and different sound due to shell design.

    But regardless (at least on paper), it seems a little too similar to the ZSR. It kinda comes across as a "new model hype train cash grab".

    I mean, the ZSR is one of the top 3 IEMs KZ has ever made. So I really hope they prove me wrong and the ED16 is even better!
    Last edited: May 24, 2018
    Strat Rider, Bartig and MyPants like this.
  13. MyPants
    I stand corrected. In that case I have no idea why they have these and the zsr...
  14. Vestat
    Thanks a lot for your first impressions.. Will be amazing if you find some more time to go deeper.

    Exactly, if we just go back a few years there are plenty of iems with same sized drivers with similar specs that sounds totally different and with totally different price ranges. apparently, every barely visible changes can mage huge differences in term of sound.
    It's strange that, at the moment, ED16 are cheaper than ZSR and are not available on the official KZ store on Ali but only trough other sellers.
  15. Slater
    I agree. But with 10-11 models slated for release in 2018 alone, they have to be really careful they don't come across as a 'throw enough *** on the wall some of it will stick, hype train cash grab'.

    In the past they did not produce anywhere even remotely close to that yearly output. So there was the opportunity for MUCH less sound overlap between 'similar on paper' models (like the ATE vs ATR, and EDSE vs EDR1 for example).

    There really seemed to be a fundamental shift in their strategy starting with the ZS5. In 'questionable' or high-risk investing (day trading, futures, penny stocks, cryptocurrency, etc) the strategy is called 'rinse and repeat'. Its primary goal (rinse and repeat) is to maximize returns as quickly as possible, at the expense of quality.
    Last edited: May 24, 2018
    rayliam80, Bartig and HungryPanda like this.

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