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Knowledge Zenith (KZ) impressions thread

  1. Vestat
    I was just stating the fact that small changes makes big differences sound wise.
    I am a designer so I guess they must have found a sort of pattern to make new models at a low cost fast rate because they definitely do not have enough time to get to the pay back point.
    I believe they are probably only an assembly station where they buy DDs, BAs and shells that have just been branded with the kz logo. That's the only way to do this and to keep the price as low as possible.
    This does not mean they lack in quality as long as we should see the production line to talk about that.
    Don't know much about business strategies though.
    Bartig likes this.
  2. phower
    Any competent electronic engineer can figure out those values or open it and measure the values of the RC circuit. It is not rocket science.
    Slater, MyPants and Adide like this.
  3. MyPants
    True and it is China... So screw em then and give me a diagram so we know how they're different. Lookin' at you, KZ...
    rayliam80 and Vestat like this.
  4. hydroid
    Great to know this while waiting for my cyan order from gearbest. Hopefully it's an upgrade of my well loved zst..
  5. GamerGuppy
    After my first KZ, the ZS6, I decided to order a few more to get a feeling for the different sound signatures. Also with the ZS6 I started my journey into IEM's. I have always been an audio enthousiast and mainly use an HD580 with O2 amp for at home listening and use a Oppo PM-3 with dragonfly for on-the-go. Somehow I never considered IEMS since I thought them to be fragile. However the cheap replacable cables of KZ caused me to reconsider my opinion on IEMS.
    I ordered a ZST and TRN bluetooth cable with APTX codec. I plan to use it for running. I do find the ZST to be very comfortable. It is a bit early to have first impressions since I haven't used it for more then half an hour. Though the ZST is by far not as detailed as the ZS6 and is a bit bassy to my liking, it might still be the best bluetooth inears I've ever used. The sound is much more then I expected from bluetooth at this price point. In hindsight I might have prefered the black version since it goes better together with the black bluetooth cable. But no regrets.
    I ordered the white ZSR since the consensus here is that it does not share the same sibilance the ZS6 has. Especially with the spinfit ear tips it's eye candy. From some angles it reminds me of pulled molars however. I did have some comfort issues at first though. Especially due to the ZSR having extremely long nozzles and the fact that spinfits can not be pushed all the way down to where the nozzle starts. This way the spinfits extend the already long nozzle, causing an extremely uncomfortable fit for me. With the starline and sillicone new-bee tips however, the ZSR somehow doesn't remain very well in my ears. Which is strange, since I have never had trouble with the fit of the ZS6 with any of these tips. So far I only like the ZSR with the New Bee Foam tips, comfort wise. I hope they don't alter the (already tamed) highs too much.

    I might try to include some more detailed impressions when I have had more time to compare them all. However, most of you are quite familiar with these already. Untill then, stay Yin & Yang everybody.
    Last edited: May 24, 2018
    Superluc, SciOC and mbwilson111 like this.
  6. Slater
    HungryPanda likes this.
  7. benedium
    I think some KZ models like ED16, or what not, are made up by other sellers and not official models from KZ factory/office. I prefer to check KZ official store or the other more reputable stores on aliexpress.
  8. KainHighwind
    After some hours, what do you think about ES4? Do you prefer it over ZSR?
  9. Dickymint
    I noticed a few mentions of sibilance with the ZS6, I to found this but by changing to the silver cable, even the basic one KZ sell, the sibilance just disappeared, before my very ears! No seriously, it made one heck of a difference! I also use the better silver cable on my ZS10's which I believe make a difference as well. Call the "Newest KZ ZST cable; It doesn't fit the ZS6 though and I don't seem to be able to find one of these for that model! Shame really.
  10. Slater
    The KZ and TRN cable have slightly different impedance values, and it is this impedance change that tweaks the amount of treble in the ZS6 (to a degree).

    On the ZS6, higher impedance = less treble (and less perceived sibilance).

    Be aware this isn't a universal rule, and varies by IEM. On some IEMs, treble actually increases as impedance goes up.

    The 8-wire braided cable you posted a photo of is kind of in the middle-ish range. If you want an even greater treble-reducing effect on the ZS6, switch to the stock ZS3 cable, the stock ZS6 cable, or to one of the TRN cables (black or silver).

    These posts have some good information about it, as well as a summary of the impedance measurements of most upgrade cables to date:
    Last edited: May 25, 2018
  11. FauDrei
    From my experience - single crystal (OCC, UPOCC...) cables in litz topology DO help with general clarity and with sibilance issues.

    At least - they helped on all headphones I've recabled to OCC/litz...
  12. KipNix
    I decided to look at mine for this issue. Nah, I just wanted to do the mod for taking the screen out, actually.
    So I took the screen out of one and lo, and behold: the tube was crushed. It looked like wadded up laundry in a clothes dryer.

    So I prodded, pushed, and made the tube to be "O" shaped again. I checked the other side and it was the same thing. Onward for checking the small vent hole.
    I could barely get a needle inside the hole, which tells me it was glued over. The other side was glued shut, too. I worked the needle around and was able to fix both.

    A listening test was in order and holy "d*mn the torpedoes", I'm getting great sound now. I'm hearing what the original designers meant to accomplish with this model.
    I won't do a review; only to say the freqs blocked were restored. Mids, upper mids, and highs sound beautiful.

    Will I buy from KZ again? Definitely, because this was a QC issue and I like the KZ designs. I know what to look for now, thanks to the good techs in here.
  13. Drakis

    I have ZS3's also, but no crushed tube.
    They are out of phase.... W8, i checked the cables, they are correctly connected.
    I even connected them incorrectly, but the out of phase continues. I think it is wrongly wired internally.
  14. durwood
    That doesn't make sense. If they are out of phase reversing the 2 pin on one side only will fix it. Of course if you switch both sides it will remain out of phase. Are you switching both sides? My ZS3 is wired out of phase, luckily it uses the straight cable so it is easy to fix and still use them even if the plug doesn't go all the way in on the reversed side. Someone correct me if I am wrong but I don't think anyone has any cases of the cable being wrong on any detachable cable KZ IEM's, only internal wiring in the actual earphone is wrong.
    Last edited: May 25, 2018
    HungryPanda likes this.
  15. Drakis
    Duhhhhhhhhhhh. I was switching both sides! My bad.
    HungryPanda likes this.

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