ROCK JAW Hydra V2 Quick Review
Thanks to ROCK JAW for the sample.
Brief: Oodles of bass.
Price: £40 or about US$63 though I could not find in the US.
Specification: Drivers: 8mm dynamic, Impedance: 16Ω, Sensitivity: 108+/-3db, Frequency response: 20 – 20000Hz, Cord Length: 1.2M, Jack type: Gold plated 3.5mm, MIC with pause/play button – (iOS & Android compatible)
Accessories: 3 pairs of tips and a little baggy.
Build Quality: Very nice. I’m generally a fan of braided and wrapped cables and the buds seem solidly constructed too.
Isolation: Really rather good for a dynamic. Perhaps even just enough for the odd flight or Tube commute and naturally easily more than enough to get yourself run over. Do look where you’re going people.
Comfort/Fit: Great. Despite being quite sealed and dynamic it was above in ears and done. Comfy to wear for ages too.
Aesthetics: Meh, there is nothing wrong with them but they don’t provoke any great desire either.
Sound: BASS. While I know from the spec its likely they are the exact same driver as in the Arcana V2 but……..the tuning here is so slanted to the bass. The bass simply is sufficiently dominating as to just get on my ****. I know that the mids are a good quality and the highs are nicely nuanced but god, that bass will just not bugger off. In smallish doses I could see some appeal in its weighty bass but in too many tracks I found it was just getting in the way of the bits I wanted to pay attention to. The detail levels though are high like its sibling which makes it all the more maddening. In strictly technical terms the driver in here is excellent and has excellent abilities for this. I know that it’s technically good but that it cost the same as its sibling, unless your some crazed bass junkie I’m struggling to see why you would go with this one. It’s like being presented with a beautifully prepared steak and then someone puts ketchup and one of those “cheese” slices on it. I know there is greatness in there but it has been tailored to a certain demographic. By certain demographic I mean people who think Beats are the height of audio quality. Perhaps a better description would be like taking something wonderful, and then wrapping it in Burberry. It may at its core still be that wonderful something but it’s just really hard to get past how it’s been tailored, sometimes just one issue can be a real show stopper.
If course if you love a mountain of bass and think Burberry is the height of good taste then by all means knock yourself out, it could well be the IEM for you.
Value: Great if you want a bass cannon. Otherwise I’d pick its sibling every time.
Pro’s: Chavtastic mountain of bass. Great technical ability.
Con’s: Tuned with Beats fans in mind.