Dunu DK-4001 -hybrid excellence

Introduction and acknowledgment Dunu are a Chinese brand that as a UK based audiophile I had heard a lot about over the last few years, but not actually managed to hear until pretty recently. Coming across their Falcon-C model (review here) at Canjam London 2018, I was impressed enough with their approach to tuning and... Continue Reading →

Unique Melody Mentor V3 – the pupil has become the master

  Pros: multiple tuning options with the bass port and multi-metal cables, solid design, great build quality, supremely musical signature, detail retrieval, ability to capture emotion Cons: Proprietary cable system limits cable swapping, DB-Go bass ports are a little loose in use, not a huge amount of difference in the tuning when switching cables or tweaking... Continue Reading →

Focal Utopia: unboxing and initial impressions

After reviewing the HiFiMAN Susvara, I wondered, and I'm sure many readers on this blog wondered, which of the Focal Utopia and the Susvara would be king of the mountain. Unfortunately, during the Susvara review, I didn't have both on hand to compare. Now I do, but I'm not going to tell you the result... Continue Reading →

The HiFiMAN Susvara – a breathtakingly beautiful and breathtakingly expensive headphone

Pros:  Detailed like an electron microscope, mostly flat frequency response, excellent sound stage height/depth/width, layering and instrument separation, incisive speed without excess, impeccable attack and decay, like being there (miniaturised) Cons: $6000, $6000, difficult to drive well (I still don’t know if I did) List Price: $6000 Product website: http://store.hifiman.com/index.php/susvara.html Introduction I’ve been a big... 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 →

Empire Ears Zeus-XR – the pinnacle of the pantheon

Pros:  Sublime detail retrieval, very coherent tuning, switchable crossover modes, mid range clarity and expression, non fatiguing but truly transparent sound, superb build quality Cons: A little on the expensive side, prone to hiss with most sources, not a drastic difference between the two modes on some DAPs, not much else List Price: $2399 (empireears.com) Acknowledgment... Continue Reading →

HiFiMAN HE-1000 v2: unboxing and first impressions

Getting the HE-1000 v2 required some skill, bad luck and good luck. In the recent HiFiMAN HE-1000 International Photo Contest our photo took top place, which won us an EF-6 amplifier. We were stoked. However, when that EF-6 came, there was something wrong with it. It is also the case that HiFiMAN didn't have an... Continue Reading →

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