Penon Audio Thread. Post your impressions here.
Nov 25, 2021 at 9:24 AM Post #3,706 of 4,322

Dsnuts

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Good question. I know all that gold plating is the more attractive looking cable. Looks more premium and costs more. It costs more due to more gold plating. For guys that have never used a gold plated copper cable. Gold plated copper cables are more common than Gold plated pure silver- which is the more versatile gold plated cable but cost almost 4X more. Gold plated copper cables are very niche in cable match ups and not as versatile as I would like. You have to have a very specific type of tuning in order to benefit from all that gold plating. For example if you use that cable on something like the Shozy SCB2. It will be too much coloration on the stock tuning which is already full bodied and thick sounding. Reason why that matches up amazingly well with the ISN SC4 is because the SC4 is a thinner pure silver cable with some crystal copper inlays and does not thicken a sound profile while enhancing imaging and detail.

The GD849 would be great for neutral thin sounding analytical earphones. Gold plating does not enhance stage like silver does so the benefit of the GS849 is that it is mostly a copper cable but has just enough gold in it to get some of that richer tonal flavoring and silver plating to help with technicalities of a given host earphone. It matches well with the H50 as H50 has a neutral tonality not warm and not a bright tonality. So it adds enough coloring to make them more technical adding stage imaging and detail with a slight richer flavoring. Adding just enough flavoring to enhance the H50.

The GD849 is a thicker gold plated cable and just like it looks it will bring a thick rich tonal character to any earphone it attaches to. While that might seem attractive to match up with your earphones. It might add a bit too much rich character to a phone. So it is not as versatile as I would like to report. If your earphones already have a bold full bodied sound the GD849 might be a bit too much for it.

If you look at the flagship cables for Penon like the Storms, ISN Solar and even the Totems. All 3 include a silver base for something like 1/2 or more of the cores. Silver off sets gold darkening properties on a sound profile so gold acts more to shape notes to be more rounder enhancing imaging and refines a note more so than playing the lead role.
The GS849 cable is like a cheapmans Totem/ Solar/ Storms. It is using similar components but not as finely tuned like the flagship cables but you will hear similar benefits using that cable. It throws out a wider stage, enhances imaging, detail and adds a fuller note weight to the sonics.= Just about all earphones can benefit from that if you think about it.
 
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Nov 25, 2021 at 9:29 AM Post #3,707 of 4,322

certifiedny

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Serial vs Isn H50, differences, similarities stage etc and which is the best of 2? In your humble opinion of course.
 
Nov 25, 2021 at 9:56 AM Post #3,708 of 4,322

ian91

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Just thought I'd post some early impressions on the ISN H50 prior to my review that will eventually A/B the H40 to the H50 stock.

On the whole I agree with @Dsnuts. The H50 is clearly a more refined all-rounder than the H40 and the fit is much better for me too. If I had to use an analogy, it's as if the H50 is the older and more mature H40. Bass has better control but with a lower subbass shelf and maybe slightly more midbass. The mids are fuller and the treble is more resolving. The characteristic soundstage is very similar but the change in shell +/- the change in DD has altered perception of it slightly. There are significant differences between the two that at first seemed subtle but I'm coming to appreciate different use cases for both. I can't really fault this tuning as a crowd-pleaser. This is a hybrid with better tonality, timbre and coherency than the vast majority at this price point, including the H40. I have a feeling it's largely down to the new composite driver in the bass that has a much more natural decay and a more thoughtful tuning compared to the bombastic H40.

If I only had money for one I would choose the H50 - I can see it performing better for a wider array of genres.


_DSC2892.jpg


_DSC2899.jpg

H50 left, H40 right.
 
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Nov 25, 2021 at 10:08 AM Post #3,709 of 4,322

Dsnuts

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Serial vs Isn H50, differences, similarities stage etc and which is the best of 2? In your humble opinion of course.
Good question.
Both have comparable stages both being wider than average stage. The serial is a touch more reference in how it is tuned but with the added benefit of dynamic timbre and a slight edge in bass tonality and quality. Both will trade punches for imaging. I don't think one is necessarily better vs the other in that department. Folks that take a precedence for neutrality might like the Serial a bit more than the H50. On the other hand the H50 sounds more musical sounding due to having more lower end emphasis in the tuning to offset the upper mids and upper treble enhancement.

H50 is more bass driven/ has more in the lower mids and has more bass impact for bass vs the Serial. As good as the new composite driver that is in the H50 the Serail has the higher quality dynamic doing the bass. Serial does not have more upper mids than the H50 but since it has slightly less lower mids it has more clarity and sounds more detailed for string instruments in comparison with that added benefit of dynamic timbre. H50 is the more colored sounding earphone vs the Serial. But tastefully done or not too bass heavy or treble heavy.

I would say it is the Serial that is more tonally accurate and is a bit more analytical is more closer to how higher end headphones are tuned. It is more closer to a U shaped presentation but these have their own musical style. It still has arguably the best female vocals out of the recent offerings.

The H50 leans a bit more musical vs being analytical in how it is tuned more of a W shaped signature. These two earphones are actually very complimentary as they both are very good at their price ranges it will come down to personal preferences
 
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Nov 25, 2021 at 10:10 AM Post #3,710 of 4,322

BobJS

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Just thought I'd post some early impressions on the ISN H50 prior to my review that will eventually A/B the H40 to the H50 stock.

On the whole I agree with @Dsnuts. The H50 is clearly a more refined all-rounder than the H40 and the fit is much better for me too. If I had to use an analogy, it's as if the H50 is the older and more mature H40. Bass has better control but with a lower subbass shelf and maybe slightly more midbass. The mids are fuller and the treble is more resolving. The characteristic soundstage is very similar but the change in shell +/- the change in DD has altered perception of it slightly. There are significant differences between the two that at first seemed subtle but I'm coming to appreciate different use cases for both. I can't really fault this tuning as a crowd-pleaser. This is a hybrid with better tonality, timbre and coherency than the vast majority at this price point, including the H40. I have a feeling it's largely down to the new composite driver in the bass that has a much more natural decay and a more thoughtful tuning compared to the bombastic H40.

If I only had money for one I would choose the H50 - I can see it performing better for a wider array of genres.


_DSC2892.jpg

_DSC2899.jpg
H50 left, H40 right.

I agree with everything you said. For me, however, I have other (more expensive, granted) IEMs that mimic the refinement of the H50, and do it better. For me, if I could only have one of the two it would be the more fun H40, which has a truly unique sound.

Still, I think your comments are right on.
 
Nov 25, 2021 at 11:39 AM Post #3,711 of 4,322

ian91

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I agree with everything you said. For me, however, I have other (more expensive, granted) IEMs that mimic the refinement of the H50, and do it better. For me, if I could only have one of the two it would be the more fun H40, which has a truly unique sound.

Still, I think your comments are right on.

Cheers for the feedback! Good to hear we're on the same page.

It's really interesting to hear what ISN have done. The one crucial part for me was the enhancement in the mids. Things are much more balanced now and it suits my preferences better. There's also a slight warming (with no loss of detail) that makes instruments more organic and vocals more natural.
 
Nov 25, 2021 at 12:33 PM Post #3,712 of 4,322

certifiedny

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Awesome thank you so much for the feedback! I love my H40, more into musical, and natural sets. In real world nothing is neutral. Dynamics swings are part of what makes music that much more enjoyable vs something flat and boring. But to each their own. Pick your poison and flavor. Musicality is my dose
 
Nov 25, 2021 at 12:44 PM Post #3,713 of 4,322

Dsnuts

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You would like the H50 more it has the requisite low end and fullness you are accustom to yet more refined H40 experience. It happens to be on sale right now. It is a total no brainer at the asking price.

Adding to my observation on the differences between the Seral and the H50. I noticed due to the nature of a triple dynamic design vs a hybrid but the Serial expands a bit more amped vs the H50. So out of the two I would recommend the H50 if used on a simple source. It will have that nice big sound on no matter what your using them on

The Serial on my DX300Max is reaching detail and a more expansive stage than on something more simple. The Serial is a more refined Penon Fan basically and shows a similar level of sound expansion when amped. It benefits from thicker cables but once you get the source and cable match up correct on the Serial it punches above a lot of sets that claim a similar sound profile and has arguably one of the best quality bass ends around for the price point.
 
Nov 25, 2021 at 12:50 PM Post #3,715 of 4,322

ian91

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@ian91 you see how the mids have some similarities for the H50 to the Legends?

Yes! They've got a similar emphasis but what's surprising is the depth to that midrange that they're pulling out of a couple BAs; well recorded vocals are a treat.
 
Nov 25, 2021 at 2:00 PM Post #3,716 of 4,322

certifiedny

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Currently using a lg v50 or qudelix 5k, so nothing close to a 300max. Down the line will probably get a nicer dac upgrade. Sounds like H50 might be the ticket especially on sale. Although the serial intrigues me a a bit more now that you said it scales nicely.
 
Nov 25, 2021 at 3:50 PM Post #3,718 of 4,322

Dsnuts

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Ok folks if you guys have ever been curious of Penon or ISN cables. They are all on sale as of today. Cheapest I have seen for these. These are boutique cables without the boutique prices. Some notable offerings

ISN SC4-- This cable is a 4 cored pure silver and crysral copper infused cable. Very well balanced in presentation and does what pure silver does in enhancing technicalities but it does not thicken a sound like some of the other thicker cables do. It is an absolute bargain at under $100 for these. These match up extremely well with the ISN H40. Orbs Globes.

ISN CU4- These are equivalent to much higher end copper cables sold by EE and other boutique manufacterers but again at a fragment of what those stores sell them for. I own an EE Eros II 8 core UPOCC copper cable that sold for $310 or so when it first came out. The CU4 does almost exactly the same thing sound wise. These match up well with Penon Fans and Serial. Adding note weight and fullness smoothening out a sound signature.

ISN GS4- These are so worth the money as these are the intro model to flagship cables that are sold on Penon and ISN. These are the bare minimum in what you need for the ISN H50. I posted on my previous post about these and why they match up so well. But these are very versatile and is a copper based cable. Thinner as it is only 4 cores but worth every penny spent on a set for a clear upgrade to what comes with your IEMs. These enhance musicality of an earphone with just enough technical enhancing from the silver plating and higher end copper to bring out the best of a musically tuned earphone. Great match up with just about anything you own. Enhances dynamics adds a slight fullness with a slight richer tonal character from the 1/4th of the cables plated in gold. These will match up extremely well for all BA sets too.

Penon Flows $50 off for one of the very best pure silver cables in the industry. These will enhance stage, detail, instrument separation, Imaging and tone of your host IEM. The cable that comes with the Penon flagship Legends will make your mid fi earphones sound much higher end. Works well with the EST50. H40, Orbs, Globes, Volts, Spheres and Legends to name a few. If your earphone has plenty of treble emphasis silver is not the way to go as it will enhance treble notes. Look into pure copper offerings if you want to smooth out that treble. First time these have been offered at this price.

Penon Mix. Superb real hybrid mix of pure silver and crystal copper. These enhance stage and technicalities of pure silver while adding pure copper benefits. You want that full bodied bass added fuller note weight while retaining that sparkling treble and detail. The mix here is a very versatile cable that enhances just about any earphone. Fantastic sale price on a set. One of the more versatile pure silver infused IEM cables a bit more higher end vs the ISN SC4.

Penon OS849 Thick SPC cables and with a good amount of silver to copper ratio. 68% copper and 32% silver. So these have a thicker silver plating than most SPC cables. What that does it helps with some of the aspects of pure silver while presenting with a fuller wider thicker sound for the host earphone. These are very versatile and can enhance any earphone it is attached to. Costs $104 right now and these are your gateway to higher end IEM cables. If you feel your sound is lacking in note weight and or fullness and or want to get something clearly better than what comes with the IEMs try these. One of the best bang for buck SPC cables in the market.

Penon GD849 Thick hybird cable with a OCC copper core in 8 cores half plated in silver and the other half in 18k gold. These are the upgraded ISN GS4s. I posted about these and these are even closer to how flagship cables are tuned. Well balanced full imaged enhancing a richer tonal character and stage. These cables have the same copper to plating ratio of the OS849. In otherwords they are OCC copper based at 68% copper and the remaining either silver or gold plating. These are much better than you would imagine. A true bang for buck IEM cable and do not mistake these for the cheap gold colored IEM cables you have seen on Aliexpress. These are the real deal when it comes to sound properties and I can attest to just how much these enhance an earphone for the better. These do wonders for neutral tuned earphones and adds even more musicality to earphones with a neutral tonal character. Superb match up for the H50 and earphones like the Blessing 2 that need some dynamic injection. Just enough colorization to enhance an earphone but not enough to take completely over. These are a hidden gem of cables and a good insight to what you get with much higher end cable offerings.
 
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