Alpha & Delta D2M first impressions, $25 IEM shootout

$25 IEM shootout pre-amble 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... Continue Reading →

Penon IEM (v2) – unboxing and initial impressions ($25 IEM shootout)

$25 IEM shootout pre-amble 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... Continue Reading →

Unique Melody ME.1: a spacious stage with an organic and euphonic sound

Pros:  Big sound stage, smooth organic sound, no harshness to be found, euphonic, comfortable, open but not leaky Cons: Some detail is lost to give the euphonic sound, not extended on either side of the audio spectrum, source has bigger than average impact on sound (matching is important), isolation, big shell will not fit some... Continue Reading →

iFi Nano iDSD Black Label: great genes in this DAC family, wallet happy price

Pros:  Excellent transparent sound, small size, outstanding price, driving power for HD600, iEMatch built in, iPurifier built in, excellent 3.5mm line-out, two good filters, huge format compatibility Cons: Silk-screen writing is damn near impossible to read, doesn’t come with short OTG cable (one would be better than none), doesn’t come with USB3.0 adaptor so not... Continue Reading →

64 Audio U8 – bass over APEX

Introduction I have always been fascinated by bass in music. That’s probably why I always feel a little bit of a fraud when someone calls me an “audiophile”, as my tastes quite often encompass a little more lower end substance than the current fashion for a more lean and mean sound. I can appreciate detail... Continue Reading →

Jackpot77’s Canjam Impressions

Canjam London will always hold a special place in my heart - this is the first portable audio festival I ever attended, and provided my first taste of true high quality portable audio, and what it could sound like. I was lucky enough to make the Sunday of this year's Canjam London, and while making... Continue Reading →

RHA CL750: excellent value, assuming you have a decent amp on your portable gear

Pros:  Stellar build quality, excellent price, comfortable, fantastic quality cable, excellent clarity, good bass control, balanced signature Cons: Hard to drive, average soundstage List Price: £99 ($129) Acknowledgment The RHA CL750 was provided to me in exchange for running the UK leg of the RHA world-wide tour for the release of the DACAMP L1, CL1,... Continue Reading →

Shanling M2s gear gallery and first impressions: a pint-sized performer

In a little bit of a different take on gear galleries, this post has some initial impressions. Things I like: Tiny. Super tiny. This thing is smaller than a pack of cards. It looks like the perfect mate to a Mojo. Can be used as external DAC Bluetooth receive and transmit (Cayin N3 does this... Continue Reading →

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