earbud virgin.

jcr71

Active Member
ive just bought some Sendara headphones, as an upgrade from Fidelio X2 and am very impressed with the sound. im running them out of a Zen dac v2.

in my mancave i have a Topping E30/L30 combo. headphones there are Sennheiser hd570 from the last century, and they sound crap to be honest.

i would like to try earphones, as i like to lay down and listen on the sofa and headphones are a bit to bulky for this.

what earphones would people recommend to reach a similar level of sound quality to at least the Fidelios?

they will be used to watch movies and listen to music, classical/country/rock/pop. mainly pre 21st century.

ive noticed Moondrop starfield being mentioned a few times. they seem quite affordable, especially when purchased direct from China. are they of good enough sound quality?.

im not opposed to second hand either.
 

OfficialChill

Standard Member
Earphones or IEMs?

No point getting Starfields when Arias exist, which are effectively the same - maybe even better - for less money. Alternatively look at the SSP which are supposed to be smaller so better if you want to lie on your side
 

jcr71

Active Member
Earphones or IEMs?
i didnt know there was a difference? its all new tech to me. just looking for something that goes in ear.
thanks for the tip on the Arias.
 

Steven

Senior Moderator
Presumably this is meant to be feedback about the Hifiman Sundara? Yes you could blind buy the Kato, or save up for the Blessing 2. Depends how deep you want to jump in 😛

If you check sometimes Amazon UK has warehouse stock here, otherwise am afraid Shenzhen Audio in China are the exclusive retailers

Blessing 2 Dusk version would be Shenzhen Audio exclusive there will not be Amazon UK warehouse stock
 

jcr71

Active Member
im not fussed about buying from china. i just want something with decent sound quality, rather than buying something then wanting to upgrade after a while, like i did with my Fidelio headphones.

ive also seen Fiio FH3 mentioned a few times and also Tin hifi T2.

looking at reviews on Amazon, quite a few people have had problems with Moondrop earphones breaking after a few months, which is a bit off putting.
 

dollag

Well-known Member
Kato are imo leagues above pretty much every iem mentioned in this thread, when i first heard them, i thought they were a £500+ iem. an abolute steal at their current price.

Iems can be to a point fragile but ive had bleesings for a while and never had an issue. i dont throw them around or stuff them in my back pack though like im sure some ppl do. I'd take them reviews with a pinch of salt
 

jcr71

Active Member
Kato are imo leagues above pretty much every iem mentioned in this thread, when i first heard them, i thought they were a £500+ iem. an abolute steal at their current price.
thanks for sharing your experience.
 

dollag

Well-known Member

Steven

Senior Moderator
looking at reviews on Amazon, quite a few people have had problems with Moondrop earphones breaking after a few months, which is a bit off putting.

TL DR version: read buyer reviews on other sites and not only Amazon reviews 😎

Longer version:

Been using IEM for 15 years and not read about fundamental build issues with moon drop. No personal experience mind as it's not 'my end of the market', so make your own decision on risk . As above, Amazon UK warehouse stock at least means Amazon will sort you out if something goes wrong.

Moon drop, Tin hifi, Dunu and Thieaudio have disrupted the IEM market on price / sound quality ratio. They have leveraged the brand recognition of the value models by bringing out their own higher tier and higher priced models like the Dunu Zen Pro and Thieaudio Monarch Mk2

Amazon: with half the negative reviews, my query from the description is whether it is a cable fault rather than the actual earpiece or driver failing (beauty of removable cables is you do not have to bin the entire product!!). Are people using IEM in the rain or hard gym sessions. Need to clean off moisture and skin oils. Are people tightly winding IEM into pockets without a case and then complaining the IEM did not survive regular joy rides

Look hard enough Western brands such as Shure and Westone have negative Amazon reviews for their IEM.

Not saying there are not legit bad IEM experiences and Amazon ratings are not helpful. Modern consumer electronics, there will be bad product samples whether it's a TV or indeed headphones. Am though saying some Amazon reviews contain more questions than answers and come across as half the story. On a forum, Reddit or wherever you can say least have a discussion and dig into a bad review

In 15 years what has stood out:

Audeze: used to have regular forum complaints when they first started. This seems to be in the past and do not really read much about Audeze build issues today (although making odd decisions like the ear pads on the flagship LCD-5 being glued on!!)

Focal: anecdotal reports of driver failures across all high end models although they also have a rep of sorting out buyers. To the extent of Focal extending the warranty on the flagship Utopia headphone to 5 years

Hifiman: again anecdotal reports about build and quality control at budget end leading to failures. Hifiman higher end models are not finished as nice as other brands and what you would expect for four figures. But you do read less actual failures with HE1000 or Susvara
 

ostewart

Well-known Member
Also a common theme with "Amazon" reviews is that you cannot trust the average person to try out all the tips and really get a good fit, thus the multiple people complaining about lack of bass from an earphone that has plenty for example.

@Steven I agree with a lot of your points, but have tried many "chi-fi" options alongside the main western brands, and Shure/Westone just have not kept up with market demand and product features, and fail when it comes to value for money.

Although one of the best brands I have come across in terms of VFM is Oriveti, a Hong Kong based company with excellent build quality and support.

Also Audeze glue the pads on for a reason - it creates the best airtight seal against the driver. It may seem annoying, and I agree, but they have tried other methods and not found anything favourable in the end (taking measurements etc...).
 

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