Saturday, 16 February 2013

HiFiMAN RE-400 Quick Review

HiFiMAN RE-400 Quick Review

Thanks to Head Direct for the sample.

Brief:  HiFiMAN’s stunning RE-0 replacement

Price:  US$100 or £63.50 at today’s exchange rate.

Specification:  Driver: 8.5mm, Impedance: 32  OHM+/- 3.2, Sensitivity: 102dB/1mW, Rated power: 10mW, Maximum power: 30 mW, Frequency response: 15 ~22 KHZ

Accessories:  4 pairs of tips and a cable tidy thing.

Build Quality:  Pretty good, woven cable cover if you like that sort of thing.

Isolation:  Fairly good.  Fine for normal day to day stuff easily but not really flight to New Zealand good.  Still enough to get you run over of course.

Comfort/Fit:  Comfort was great, fit was a bit more sensitive as they did give me a bit of venting / air pressure issues.  Nothing major but pretty closed dynamics always have a bit of that.

Aesthetics:  The buds look not bad with their sculpted metal exterior.  Visually though these are nothing stunning.

Sound:  Exquisite.  The old RE-0 were stunning, unrivalled at their price and I don’t think anyone has ever claimed otherwise.  Their only problem was they were very narrow and unfulfilling in the low end.  The RE-400 fixes those issues while retaining essentially the same stunning, jaw dropping clarity at a price that no one else can touch.  Sure it’s still going to be rather uncoloured a sound for some.  It can’t rumble and roar in the low end and compared to mainstream stuff the mids will feel very in your face.  It also not the greatest at doing laid back and smooth.  It’s a real wonder though, clarity, detail, superb shimming highs are all fantastic.  It’s pretty uncoloured not unlike it predecessor but aside from a slight loss of treble detail these are just as articulate.  Very balanced on the whole, a tiny bump up in the low end, mostly the improvement is in the sound staging.  It’s a real step up from the 0 and makes the 400 sound much more full and sizeable.  The dynamics are outstanding too making for a rather lively, energetic sound that can really fade to a whisper then get very loud in an instant.  It’s a practically faultless sounding IEM that is just full of vim and tremendous balance.

Value:  Arguably the best value of any IEM ever in my opinion right now.

Pro’s:   Insanely good sounding.  Superb detail levels.

Con’s:  Has not the “consumer” levels of bass some might want.

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