Knowledge Zenith (KZ) impressions thread
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igorneumann

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just hold your mouth open while inserting your earphones
WHAT?
I wonder how you found out about that trick!

I have just 1 earphone with loads of driver flex from a brand that shouldn't be named nor mentioned, dont get that with any KZ.

Thanks for this suggestion, will definitelly try that trick, ZS10 with a bit more bass would be awesome and maybe prevent me from buying the ZS7 that I know physically hurts to use just to have a basshead Hybrid KZ.

Bu the way, the bassiest hybrid KZ I tried is the (very neglected, here) ZSR, wonder if its similar.

Sooo, i'm back with something like 15 hours on the ZST. Not much by any means, but i'm starting to getting a better idea about the sound signature.

I've been playing a bit with EQing, and it turns out that by lowering the 3.5k and 4k band by about 4db i pretty much get the kind of sound i was looking for, just doing that removes any kind of fatigue-inducing harshness the ZST had. Been trying some other bands too, but it looks like those two are the biggest "issue", moving other things in the 2.5k to 8k range would more be about changing the sound towards what i normally seek, thus going against the reason i'm looking into brighter earphones, so i'm disregarding these other bands.
So, keeping that in mind, i started doing some research, and it looks like the ZSR might have such a sound signature that i'd get what i'm looking for, possibly without using any EQ tuning (i'm the kind of guys that preferes to avoid using EQ as much as possible), since both from reviews and from frequency graphs it seems they have a nice steep dip right in the 3.5k to 4.5k area.
Would anyone that has both the ZST and ZSR agree with my assumption?
Also, if that's the case, what would be the path in upgrading along the KZ line? From what i've read around the zs10 pro might be a bit too bright for me.
Yes, the ZSR has a void around 4kz, It was a time when KZ had loads of complains of killer highs and I think it was their 1st try to tame its highs.
Its also the bassiest Hybrid KZ I have (was just wondering about it vs ZS7), with a lot of emphasis in the subbass. (its low frequencies are very BUSY, dont expect a fast and precise bass).

But Im not sure exactly what you want here... for what I understood you like treble and want a bright earphone that doesnt hurt you?

I think you should look at their newer models, ZS10Pro came to my mind, they improved their try-not-to-hurt-you game (you dont feel some frequencies are missing), except if you chose a ZS7 (physically hurt you) or a AS16 (its highs will hurt you), but if you want to be hurt both ways you need to revisit the ZS6.

PS.: I would wait for more replies as I dont trust my own judgement alone.
 
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George Taylor

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Back again, to report that I finally was able to get the ZST to seat in my ears properly. Just took me being half asleep (ie relaxed enough), and some normal old comply tips. I think the tips I was trying to use were sliding onto the nozzle too far, thus not letting me wear them right. That said, they sound fine for the price, which was around $15 on Amazon. Not really great, but also not bad either.
 
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xxAMAROKxx

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...
I think you should look at their newer models, ZS10Pro came to my mind, they improved their try-not-to-hurt-you game (you dont feel some frequencies are missing), except if you chose a ZS7 (physically hurt you) or a AS16 (its highs will hurt you), but if you want to be hurt both ways you need to revisit the ZS6.

PS.: I would wait for more replies as I dont trust my own judgement alone.
AS16's highs are ok IMHO. When I listen to them I always think that KZ had to give them a job to tame heighs like this. Their biggest problem are harshy mids.
And I have to apologize to the AS12. With Silver/Gold cable They're beast.
 
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igorneumann

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AS16's highs are ok IMHO. When I listen to them I always think that KZ had to give them a job to tame heighs like this. Their biggest problem are harshy mids.
And I have to apologize to the AS12. With Silver/Gold cable They're beast.
There is any IEM that you cant stand the highs?

Asking because I actually enjoy the treble on IEMs that everyone else complain about... maybe you are just like me.
 
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xxAMAROKxx

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When there is a plateu at treble part of the frequency range - without big peaks or dips up to the 10 kHz - these iems suit me in most cases. I have always considered treble to be the most important part of the reproduced music. Maybe because I'm sensitive to it, idk. Earphones can be treble light or heavy, but smooth or at least in balance with mids.
 
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Aparker2005

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I was seriously considering buying custom mold ultimate ears ue-5 pros this week as my main iem for my drumming use on stage. I had already had them in my cart about to hit order.

It then hit me that I was about to spend $550 on a set of probably awesome ears that would fit perfectly, but did I really need to drop that much money on iems when I have 2 amazing ones already, with the only issue being not custom molded?

The as16s and zs10 pros I have are amazing. The as16 has the most amazing sound and are very comfortable. The zs10 pro nearly fit my ear absolutely perfectly like a custom mold, at least on the outside.

So thanks to this forum and you good people, I really think I saved a $550 purchase and have 2 sets of ears that work absolutely perfectly for me. I really don't see the need to upgrade.
 
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Coldheart29

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But Im not sure exactly what you want here... for what I understood you like treble and want a bright earphone that doesnt hurt you?
Pretty much. I'm quite sensitive to the 3.5k to 4.5k range of frequencies, so the only thing that really "hurts" me is peaks in that area. specifically, with the ZST just lowering 3.5k and 4k bands by 4db turns them from something that qould make me uncomfortable after a couple hours to something that i could wear all day long without issues. And that's it, no other change is really needed.

just to make things a bit clearer, this here is what i need to take out any fatiguin factor from the ZST.

A)
upload_2019-7-26_12-0-48.png


This is what i'd do if i really wanted to fine tune the sound to match my personal taste, but it's not needed, whereas the previous adjustment i pretty much need to use the ZST for longer periods.
B)
upload_2019-7-26_12-7-47.png



At this point i guess the question is: would the ZS10 pro need the same kind of adjustment in the A graph, or would it be be fine without fiddling with the EQ?
 
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igorneumann

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Pretty much. I'm quite sensitive to the 3.5k to 4.5k range of frequencies, so the only thing that really "hurts" me is peaks in that area. specifically, with the ZST just lowering 3.5k and 4k bands by 4db turns them from something that qould make me uncomfortable after a couple hours to something that i could wear all day long without issues. And that's it, no other change is really needed.

just to make things a bit clearer, this here is what i need to take out any fatiguin factor from the ZST.

A)

This is what i'd do if i really wanted to fine tune the sound to match my personal taste, but it's not needed, whereas the previous adjustment i pretty much need to use the ZST for longer periods.
B)


At this point i guess the question is: would the ZS10 pro need the same kind of adjustment in the A graph, or would it be be fine without fiddling with the EQ?
I thought it was... but then I searched for their respective frequency response and it tells a different story:

The darker reddish line, at the top in the bass is the ZS10 Pro
The purple middle one is the ZST and the lower, green one is the ZSR.

upload_2019-7-26_13-14-41.png


I think just the ZSR will have that dip in 4k.

Ps.: Have you tried to place a filter in the nose? You can easily make one out of a teabag or transpore tape.
 
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auraldesire95

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Just wanted the praise the ZSN (non-Pro) as they’re absolutely gorgeous and sound wonderful, regardless of what I listen to through them.

Praise be to KZ! (a little rhyme there, aye?)
 
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igorneumann

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She's using the Rock Zircon's I gave her and seems happy with them. She only knows about Apple...
Damn, my wife uses the same one... I gave her about 10 units until I found one that she agreed in replacing her aging Sennheiser CX200
 
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igorneumann

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OMG, Zeos just reviewed the KZ ZS10!

I've been recommended the ZS3/ZS4/ZS4e (or 3e?) on here for really good noise isolation since the ZSN I bought isn't doing a good job of isolating.

Out of these three, which would have the most forward sounding and flatter or at least not bass-heavy sound signature?
ZS4, me thinks... The ZS3 is very bassy and the 3e I havent tried.
But all of them are V shaped.
 
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Coldheart29

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Ps.: Have you tried to place a filter in the nose? You can easily make one out of a teabag or transpore tape.
Not yet, i'll wait to get some more playtime on the earphones before trying any kind of modding, it never hurts to wait for some good burn in to get into action, especially considering that, as i said, with just that bit of EQing the ZST sounds really fine. Would also be interesting to see how removing the metal grid would impact on the sound, but i'm not sure yet of how to remove it and then locking it back into position without affecting the nozzle too much.
 
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igorneumann

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Not yet, i'll wait to get some more playtime on the earphones before trying any kind of modding, it never hurts to wait for some good burn in to get into action, especially considering that, as i said, with just that bit of EQing the ZST sounds really fine. Would also be interesting to see how removing the metal grid would impact on the sound, but i'm not sure yet of how to remove it and then locking it back into position without affecting the nozzle too much.
Dont think the metal grid has any effect on the sound.

The filters is a 2 minutes mod you can take off anytime you want, take the eartip out, place the filter, put the eartip over the filter.
 
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I thought it was... but then I searched for their respective frequency response and it tells a different story:

The darker reddish line, at the top in the bass is the ZS10 Pro
The purple middle one is the ZST and the lower, green one is the ZSR.



I think just the ZSR will have that dip in 4k.

Ps.: Have you tried to place a filter in the nose? You can easily make one out of a teabag or transpore tape.
Thanks for this feedback.

KZ/CCA have a number of models that are technically more capable than the ZSR. I'm currently putting the 10Pro, NPr0, KB10 and F1 through their paces but I have to say that I use my ZSR regularly because I enjoy them.

To me the ZSR has an enjoyable amount of bass, midrange, treble, air and soundstage with decent separation and imaging. Bass response for each person will vary based on how one's ear covers the ports at the base of the earphone and yes, bass response will effect the rest of the presentation. In addition, the ZSR's 4khz dip, while odd, contributes to what I call the ZSR's version of "smooth and airy".

Again, the ZSR may not be as technically capable as some of the newer releases but it still gets lots of playtime from me.

10077751 (0).jpg


https://www.head-fi.org/showcase/kz-zsr.22905/


In the end it all boils down to what you will grab when you want to enjoy YOUR music.


 
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I just ordered the entry-level Audiosense T180 for $35US. It's time for me to start seeing how KZ stacks up to other brands. #AKZHolicForNotMuchLonger?
Well I have temporarily joined that club. Dipping my toes in Tennmak nowadays over KZ. Got their Pro + Piano over ZSN Pro/CA4 and Trio over ZS10 Pro. Maybe I'm just bored of KZ's signature for now or Tennmak's mellow+airy highs make me enjoy my music more than KZs. Also, with Tennmak allowing to buy earheads only is a huge plus as it saves over 50% of their retail price of the complete package. Got Trio earheads only for $28! Very hard to pass such a sweet deal. KZ should also start something like that IMO as it gives a lot of flexibility to the end consumer.
 
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