Sony XBA-A2 need help/opinion
Jan 2, 2015 at 7:45 PM Thread Starter Post #1 of 233

harrysjoyce

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Hi everyone,
After doing some research I have decided that I am probably going to purchase the Sony XBA-A2 3 way hybrid earphones. I can't seem to find any reviews or much information online so if anyone has listened to the earphones, owned the earphones or know anything about the earphones could you please comment below of your opinion of the Sony XBA-A2. I currently own the Shure SE215 earphones so tell me the difference between the XBA-A2 and SE215.
 
Feb 4, 2015 at 10:37 AM Post #2 of 233

audiohurric4ne

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Hi everyone,
After doing some research I have decided that I am probably going to purchase the Sony XBA-A2 3 way hybrid earphones. I can't seem to find any reviews or much information online so if anyone has listened to the earphones, owned the earphones or know anything about the earphones could you please comment below of your opinion of the Sony XBA-A2. I currently own the Shure SE215 earphones so tell me the difference between the XBA-A2 and SE215.

 
i tried the xba A2 and A3 in a local store. i actually really liked the A2 and to me the A2 is a better value for money between the two. i really think its on the same level as A3 but just a little bit different, maybe its just me YMMV. almost bought the A2 but just cant resist the msr7 deal for only MYR 789 (217usd). i say just go for it. you wont be disappointed. oh and i also tried the shure se215,dunu dn1000 and the ckr9 back then, to me the A2 best them all again ymmv. cant really compare the two as im not good in describing sound sorry. 
 
Feb 6, 2015 at 2:03 AM Post #3 of 233

ericinca

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I bought a pair of the XBA A2 and have been listening to them for approximately a week.  I can only compare these to XBA 3 which I owned previously.  Compared to them, the XBA A2 is superior and a very worthwhile upgrade.  For one, it is noticeably louder, similar to older Sony non-BA earphones I have.  When I first got the XBA 3, I noticed they needed noticeably more power to push the earphones to a similar loudness.  It was not that great since I often like to listen at relatively low volume but still hear decent bass.  XBA 3 couldn't manage it.  The bass on the XBA A2 is quite substantial, reasonably taut, detailed, while not being overbearing to the mids and treble.  Listening to the earphones, the bass sounds comparable to modern powered subs which have enough power to extend into bass frequencies properly (I guess), while the bass mixes seamlessly into the mids.  Mids are a bit laid back and could be more pronounced, and the treble is crisp and just fine.  All in all, it's a well balanced sound.
 
I replaced the installed silicon tips with the hybrid tips for better proper seal.  After a week, I am really enjoying the sound from the earphones.  Definitely my favorite pair of earphones so far by a good margin.
 
Feb 7, 2015 at 12:36 AM Post #4 of 233

Wiz33

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  Hum. I just posted on this thread with a comparison between the XBA-30 and the A2, A3 and Z5.
 
http://www.head-fi.org/t/680119/sony-xba-h1-and-xba-h3-hybrid-dynamic-and-ba-iem/2955#post_11297845
 
Apr 7, 2015 at 3:20 PM Post #5 of 233

rlukash

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Hey. I just picked up A2 and compared it to H3 and xb90.A2s are very close to H3 in mids and highs, although they are a bit more sparkling (just a tad though). The bass of A2 is impressive, with Sony's original medium silicone tips it is close to xb90 and rivals H3s with a tape mod (or wide bore tips). However, it id not on par with H3s equipped with Sony's plain silicone tips with a good seal. The bass in H3s is simply deeper, quicker and DOES NOT overpower mids as much as the bass in A2s.

Overall, A2s are great and convenient set of premium IEMs and are a keeper for everyday enjoyment, however they are not quite H3s and I don't know if a bit of sparkle in new (linear) BAs of A2 and A3 are winning me over as i think the balance between the shimmering/sparkling treble and a dark sound in H3 was almost perfect.

By the way I also have H1s and am planning to do a comparison with A2 as well.

Hope this helps.
 
Apr 16, 2015 at 5:23 PM Post #6 of 233

ianeith

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Hey. I just picked up A2 and compared it to H3 and xb90.A2s are very close to H3 in mids and highs, although they are a bit more sparkling (just a tad though). The bass of A2 is impressive, with Sony's original medium silicone tips it is close to xb90 and rivals H3s with a tape mod (or wide bore tips). However, it id not on par with H3s equipped with Sony's plain silicone tips with a good seal. The bass in H3s is simply deeper, quicker and DOES NOT overpower mids as much as the bass in A2s.

Overall, A2s are great and convenient set of premium IEMs and are a keeper for everyday enjoyment, however they are not quite H3s and I don't know if a bit of sparkle in new (linear) BAs of A2 and A3 are winning me over as i think the balance between the shimmering/sparkling treble and a dark sound in H3 was almost perfect.

By the way I also have H1s and am planning to do a comparison with A2 as well.

Hope this helps.


My experience is directly inverse to this. I feel the H3 bass as overpowering while the A2 is now controlled and quick.
 
May 6, 2015 at 9:43 AM Post #7 of 233

Bilbow

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I bought the XBA A2s soon after they came out in Malaysia in order to have a more portable alternative to my existing Sony MDR-1Rs.  Truth be told they sound better to me than the MDR-1R in ALL areas!  At home I run them with IFI Micro iDSD and iUSB Power + Gemini cable, which is an excellent way to drive these IEMs.  Unfortunately the A3s were not available when I purchased the A2s, but I don't feel as if I'm missing out on anything.
 
May 6, 2015 at 9:50 AM Post #8 of 233

ianeith

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I bought the XBA A2s soon after they came out in Malaysia in order to have a more portable alternative to my existing Sony MDR-1Rs.  Truth be told they sound better to me than the MDR-1R in ALL areas!  At home I run them with IFI Micro iDSD and iUSB Power + Gemini cable, which is an excellent way to drive these IEMs.  Unfortunately the A3s were not available when I purchased the A2s, but I don't feel as if I'm missing out on anything.


The A3s have the fussy behind-ear deployment feature of the H3s; for me reason enough to stick to the comfortable and still kick-@$$ A2s. Both are triple-driver, though, and, if I remember correctly, the A3 has a larger dynamic diaphragm (and different tuning thereof) than the A2.
 
May 9, 2015 at 10:13 AM Post #9 of 233

marlonmarabe

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I have been using the A2 for a week or two now. All I can say is that Sony has done such an incredible job with this iem. Never in my life have I heard this smoothness, coherence, control in a universal iem below $300. From bass to mids to highs these are no doubt hifi resolution sounding. The A2's have practically made 90% of my headphone collection collect dust. It sounds THAT good. The only ones that sound near the A2 are my es10,im70,ie80 with silver cable, baldoor e100. The rest are put inside the drawer. What amazes me also is the bass. It is deep thumping without bass bleed. Paired with the audio engine d3, I cant believe such big sound coming out of this iem. It makes some full sized headphones sound constricted, bloated, muddy. Now, I don't know why the A2's aren't famous. This is one very underrated earphone. Go ahead and buy yourself one and thank me later. I have fallen in love all over again with my music library. From steely dan to some maroon 5 to some house music. Any type of genre sounds good. The marriage between dynamic driver + balance armature incorporated with sonys crossover design and super tweeter is nothing short of PHENOMENAL. This is the steal of the century. This certainly rivals some customs ive heard. It is THAT good
 
May 11, 2015 at 10:00 AM Post #10 of 233

Bilbow

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  I have been using the A2 for a week or two now. All I can say is that Sony has done such an incredible job with this iem. Never in my life have I heard this smoothness, coherence, control in a universal iem below $300. From bass to mids to highs these are no doubt hifi resolution sounding. The A2's have practically made 90% of my headphone collection collect dust. It sounds THAT good. The only ones that sound near the A2 are my es10,im70,ie80 with silver cable, baldoor e100. The rest are put inside the drawer. What amazes me also is the bass. It is deep thumping without bass bleed. Paired with the audio engine d3, I cant believe such big sound coming out of this iem. It makes some full sized headphones sound constricted, bloated, muddy. Now, I don't know why the A2's aren't famous. This is one very underrated earphone. Go ahead and buy yourself one and thank me later. I have fallen in love all over again with my music library. From steely dan to some maroon 5 to some house music. Any type of genre sounds good. The marriage between dynamic driver + balance armature incorporated with sonys crossover design and super tweeter is nothing short of PHENOMENAL. This is the steal of the century. This certainly rivals some customs ive heard. It is THAT good


I completely agree on your observations - I bought these without reading any reviews (something rare for me!) as they were new to market at the time.  Several months later I still couldn't find any reviews that went beyond basic spec sheets - I was really interested to see what others thought of them so I'm glad this thread has finally turned up.  I really don't know what it would take for me to upgrade these, even with my current IFI setup driving them - they are indeed THAT good!  
 
May 11, 2015 at 11:06 AM Post #11 of 233

cuiter23

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Anyone have experience how good the XBA-A3 is with isolation? 
 
I know the A1 and A2 are both sealed designs and the A3 is ported. 
 
May 11, 2015 at 11:35 AM Post #12 of 233
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I demoed these side by side with the A3 and Z5 and a couple hundred other IEM and these A2 stole the show. There were no reviews for em before I did mine...
confused.gif

They stomped on their expensive brothers in bass and clarity where the A3 and Z5 sounded at no time like clarity beasts these did....and of course they got lots of bass
 

 
May 11, 2015 at 9:25 PM Post #13 of 233

marlonmarabe

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I completely agree on your observations - I bought these without reading any reviews (something rare for me!) as they were new to market at the time.  Several months later I still couldn't find any reviews that went beyond basic spec sheets - I was really interested to see what others thought of them so I'm glad this thread has finally turned up.  I really don't know what it would take for me to upgrade these, even with my current IFI setup driving them - they are indeed THAT good!  


same here. i dont see any iem beating the a2 in the short term. there is some magical quality to it. the a3 and z5 are way overpriced. cheers!
 
May 11, 2015 at 9:26 PM Post #14 of 233

marlonmarabe

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I demoed these side by side with the A3 and Z5 and a couple hundred other IEM and these A2 stole the show. There were no reviews for em before I did mine...:confused:
They stomped on their expensive brothers in bass and clarity where the A3 and Z5 sounded at no time like clarity beasts these did....and of course they got lots of bass


hahaha i get what youre saying. the a2 might be the best iem ive ever heard that wont break your wallet. it sounds good unamped, sounds even better amped. omg!
 
May 11, 2015 at 10:14 PM Post #15 of 233
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hahaha i get what youre saying. the a2 might be the best iem ive ever heard that wont break your wallet. it sounds good unamped, sounds even better amped. omg!


 It's a Japanese import that most folks have not heard. If you listen to them and compare with many of the well known and well reviewed IEM on this site it is clear....pun intended...that these are worth  their asking price (unlike many others) and were the best execution based on this body design and driver config that Sony made. I made a vid of me hunting for my favorites based on clarity and bass. I walked out with these and came on here and had to add it to the list (it wasn't a reviewable item...wasn't even listed) and then review it. That other threads have massive communities dedicated to more expensive and flawed IEM is a group think lack of interaction. There is a very expensive and famous set of Shure that don't fare well when "A" "B" on a flat eq with the A2.
That's amazing.
 
"Nothing beats a personal listening experience"<<< That is often said and spot on. I never would have known of these from here and went in to the shop and heard the Shure,senn, ATH, etc etc and got sideways wowed by the A2. Then I started comparing everything to the A2 and it was a slaughterhouse of famous names getting trounced in clarity, mid to bass trans, highs.
 

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