New Ultrasone zino impressions (with some pics)
Jul 6, 2009 at 2:33 PM Thread Starter Post #1 of 28

Sasaki

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I got new Ultrasone zino that is apparently a successor to iCans.

   

Comparing zino to iCans, zino looks better than the toy-ish look of the iCans.
(lower: iCans)



Zino sounded better than burned-in iCans without any burn-in. zino is more clear, more crisp and richer. The bass is more deep and punchy. At least one level higher then iCans.
Overall, zino sounded detailed, sweet and pleasant, with good bass considering the size.



I tried zino with my iMod+P51 setup but it sounded good for straight out from iPod. Also I found zino is a good match to AMP3 (here is the AMP3 discussion, just in case).



Additionally, the headbands of zino is more expandable and not too secure like iCans. The side pressure is not so strong as iCans. Some people have a complaint about fitting of iCans, but there is clear improvement. More flexible to wear.
Zino also has a cable splitter and the plug is now straight.

Zino sounded very nice for the price, neat looking and comfortable. I think zino is a good successor to iCans.
 
Jul 6, 2009 at 3:18 PM Post #4 of 28

Ultrazino

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Got them last Friday.
Somehow I got mixed feelings.

As I already mentioned in the Ultrasone forum, they sounded very flat and boring on my Cowon D2+ without equalizer. The bass doesn't reach me.

I don't really notice the S-Logic. The effect is not as strong as I expected it to be.

The phones only start sounding great from volumes 20 and up (on the Cowon), which is kinda ironic that I'd have to turn up the volume although they're supposed to be healthy for the ears.

My head seems to be too narrow for the Zino to fit correctly. If I shake my head they fly off.

My wife says they sound really great. Maybe it's just me...
I'm still undecided.

Update:
Sorry, I don't know what's wrong with my ears... I just listened to them again on my receiver and the sound & bass are simply amazing.
I don't want to listen to my CX 500 in-ears ever again!
jecklinsmile.gif
... unless I need isolation.

However, they still sound weak on the D2. Even FLAC files can't do the phones justice. I have to use the full range of the equalizer. Maybe it's time to get a portable amp?
 
Jul 7, 2009 at 1:36 PM Post #6 of 28

Sasaki

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Hi all thanks for the comments.

Quote:

Originally Posted by toughnut /img/forum/go_quote.gif
Look more portable than ES7. Look like i gonna get this instead of ES7 as my first portable can.


I think zino is way better than ES7 regarding SQ and comfort, however, zino lacks isolation.
 
Jul 7, 2009 at 3:09 PM Post #7 of 28

Ultrazino

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I'll just throw my impressions in here as they're not worth a new thread.

This is not a review but merely my personal opinion. I just write this down to sort my thoughts. My ears probably don't reach audiophile levels anyway but for anybody who's interested here it goes:

The reason I've purchased Ultrasone's portable is mostly because of the S-Logic Natural Surround Sound patent.
My ears have always been sensitive and just recently I have ripped my eardrum open. That's the reason I have decided on the Zino which promises to reduce the eardrum pressure by up to 40%. I have no options to actually verify this but I do feel way more comfortable wearing them in comparison to my Sennheiser IEM or AKG closed headphones.

Used hardware:
- At home: Technics AV receiver SA-EX140 with CD-Player SL-PG3 and Marantz TT-42 turntable.
(As you can see this setup is several years old and I have kept it since my days in school.)
- On the go: Cowon D2+ (firmware 2.11)
Tested music:
Rock: Monster Magnet, Franz Ferdinand, Coldplay / Electronica: Fatboy Slim / Pop: Michael Jackson (R.I.P.) / Metal: Machine Head, Mastodon / Rap: Kanye West, Eminem / Misc: Regina Spektor, Corinne Bailey Rae / Classical: Edvard Grieg / Jazz: Norah Jones, Room Eleven

The packaging does not do the Ultrasone justice. Cheap plastic covers phones at the price of high-end models. But once you've got them unpacked, the high level of quality shows. The carrying case is of high quality and the rubber wrapped cord feels very robust. The phone jack looks strong and stylish. The low weight of the headphones makes them very comfortable. My head is very narrow but they fit just as well on everybody who've tried them.
All in all, the Zino is a pleasure to carry around. Feels good, looks good.

First thing I did is remove all features of the Cowon (no equalizer, no BBE+, no Mach3Bass, etc..) and plug the Zino in. I was almost shocked at how flat and dead the sound was. But I have to admit, without enhancements the CX 500's sound is also disappointing but they cost far less.
So I carried the phones over to my Hi-fi system and put Fatboy Slim on. What a relief! The sound was suddenly great and very authentic. The sound of vinyl with full treble and bass is amazing! Not perfect, but surely worth the money, IMO.
The surround sound is present but not as much as I would have expected. Sounds that come from the side do sound like they're further away from the ear but centered voices still sound like they're in your head. I also noticed that S-Logic only becomes apparent when you wear the phones correctly. You have to adjust them accordingly to the logo on the sides so that the holder is a little to the back.
Meanwhile I have also found settings for my D2 that at least light a small fire in the cold sound that the Cowon has by default. (Apple's sound is supposed to be warmer and I'll see if I can get to try one out.)

The semi-open build is not recommended with tight double bass drums from Dave McClain (Machine Head) or Rap beats - especially not with S-Logic.
But for fans of Classical, Jazz or Rock à la Coldplay the sound is a pure treat.
Normal conversations can be held while listening to music so the isolation is very poor (which can be a good thing). You'll either want to turn the volume up or stop the music altogether when you're on the bus, though.

Conclusion:
Portable, great design, depending on the source clear and transparent sound with great bass, a lot of features (S-Logic, MU Metal Shielding, ULE) for little money that at the same time could also be more apparent for the money.
Try them out and decide for yourself. The Zino is definitely not an all-rounder and will stay a niche product - as much as I wish more popularity for Ultrasone!
But depending on personal taste the Zino can be a little highlight.
smily_headphones1.gif
 
Jul 7, 2009 at 4:02 PM Post #8 of 28

Squirsier

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Anyone knows where to get these in Canada? I'd like to get a pair for my gf
smily_headphones1.gif


Edit : Looks like the main distributor in Canada is in my town! I emailed them to know if they had in stock, but anywhere else you guys know I could buy from online?
 
Jul 7, 2009 at 6:52 PM Post #9 of 28

DeusEx

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Quote:

Originally Posted by Sasaki /img/forum/go_quote.gif
Hi all thanks for the comments.



I think zino is way better than ES7 regarding SQ and comfort, however, zino lacks isolation.



lol.....anyone have a consensus on this? Considering ES7s...(for their modern metal look)
 
Jul 9, 2009 at 3:15 AM Post #11 of 28

iHelp

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Where did you get these? (website).

PM me about it instead of replying (if you can).

Thanks!
 
Jul 9, 2009 at 7:06 AM Post #14 of 28
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I'll have to add these to the list of cans to try next time I'm in the city with my iPod. Thanks for the review Sasaki.
smily_headphones1.gif
 

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