Linsoul BLD initial impressions, $50 IEM shootout

One of the coolest phenomenons in audio right now is the big improvements moving forward in the budget sector. $100 headphones can and do compete with $400 headphones, and $25 headphones sometimes compete with $200 headphones. It’s a great time to be an audiophile, even if your budget isn’t as large as you’d like it... Continue Reading →

Stealth Sonics U9: bass plus refinement

Pros: Precise accurate bass tuning, tasteful bass uptick, timbral accuracy all around, good stage width and height, high quality stock cable, includes microphone cable (flexibility+), light-weight Cons: Upper mids can be a bit aggressive, aggressive elements of presentation reduce perceived stage, case not very usable from a travel perspective, does not look or feel like... Continue Reading →

oBravo Cupid – first impressions of something unexpected and brilliant

Would you believe me if I told you that I'm enjoying the £249 oBravo Cupid as much as any oBravo I've listened to? The oBravo line-up is notoriously picky with amplification, including the £8999 Ra C-Cu. Each of the ERIB and EAMT hybrid series has several flavours with different sound according to housing material (warm wood, neutral... Continue Reading →

Unique Melody Mason V3 review: mastering the details at terminal velocity

Pros: Remarkably detailed, natural treble extension, deep bass extension, speed to dominate even the fastest tracks, flexible tuning with dB-Go and ‘Dual Tone’ cable, big soundstage, timbre, bass texture, revealing details previously unnoticed and giving new life to old music, can battle with full size headphones for stage Cons: large universal shell, price, cable is... Continue Reading →

Bristol HiFi 2019: best audio show in Britain, even better with friends

Bristol HiFi (previously known as Bristol Sound & Vision) organised by Audio T and What HiFi is the biggest audio show in the UK. It's huge, taking over 4+ floors of the Bristol Marriott with over 100 brands on exhibition. Many new technologies are debuted here and it's a good place to have identify gear... Continue Reading →

The HiFiMAN HE1000 v2 – a triumph of engineering and sonic performance

Pros: Beautiful sound, good stage, nice timbre, bass improved over v1, unique styling, super comfortable, price to performance, prefer it to the Focal Utopia Cons: included cables don’t look premium, mediocre cable sound quality, could use a practical carrying case, not the Susvara List Price: $2999 Product website: http://store.hifiman.com/index.php/he-1000.html Introduction I’ve been a big fan... Continue Reading →

Lark Studio LSX Review: warm, refined, impactful, lush bassy goodness

Pros: Bass that competes with good dynamic drivers, silky mids, tiny shell size, excellent Rhapsodio cable, excellent overall build quality, good selection of tips, custom same price as universal, very competitive value proposition Cons: Rhapsodio cable currently only available single-ended, source dependent sonic precision, some sources will be too warm for some, trades some detail... Continue Reading →

HiFiMAN RE2000 Gold and Silver: fantastic audio quality, fubar construction

Pros:  Well controlled extended bass, tight linear sound, impressive stage width, excellent resolution and dynamics, lovely timbre Cons: Slight recession in mids, poor shell design for mid to small size ears, there are better built IEMs for under $200 List Price: $1500 (Silver), $2000 (Gold) Product Website: RE2000 Silver, RE2000 (Gold) Pros and cons are... Continue Reading →

Kumitate Lab KL-Sirius: four sweet drivers in a sexy acrylic shell

Pros:  Silky mids, delicate treble, scale with upgrades, excellent technical performance, good stage width and depth Cons: Reference bass (meaning light), minimal sub-bass, lack of accessories, stock cable is too thin List Price: $800.00 (¥90,000 JPY) Product Website: http://www.kumitatelab.com/kl-sirius/?sl=en Rating Disclaimer: ratings are subjective. Audio quality and value do not mean the same thing across... Continue Reading →

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