All about this IEM talks about the manufacturer attempting at differentiating from the crowd – which is a much needed as much as difficult exercise, considering how crowded their chosen price bracket is of successful other models.
They first of all invested quite some thought onto the physical parts of the product: very lightweight, perfectly and firmly fitting, incredibly comfortable (YMMV), and nice to look at too. I reckon they will nicely appeal to a young market preferring “fresher”-looking and -feeling devices.
On the more technical side, MEMT substantiates their attempt in choosing a dual-DD setup first of all, and a not so common punchy-bass, bright-detaily presentation, evidently eyeing to users looking more for “monitor-grade” drivers than yet another “fun-tuned” in-ear pair. As I will try the outline, their effort did turn into an effectively different-sounding IEM, with some definite good parts and others more in the shadows. Wether it will be loved will depend on personal tastes.
I got this pair of MEMT R1 as a review unit from my friends at KEEPHIFI (www.keephifi.com) entrusting me to an unbiased analysis and openhearted subjective evaluation, which is what I’m reporting here below. You can purchase R1 at Friendly Audio Store (Keephifi’s official store).
|Nice, clean & dynamic lows.||Bright-unbalanced tuning (some may like it).|
|Engaging trebles.||Thin vocals.|
|Good details.||Lacking in separation / layering.|
|Nice looks and great comfort||Tendent to sibilance (good luck with tip rolling).|
Full Device Card
Hiby R5 / Apogee Groove + Fiio A5 – Reversed Starline tips – Stock “upgrade” single ended cable – Lossless 16/44.1 – 24/96 – 24/192 FLAC tracks.
|Tonality||Bright general tonality on a wide-V general signature. Trebles impose their presence at all times making the entire presentation unavoidably bright also due to the depressed mid section, with the sole significant counterbalance represented by a well realized, punchy, rhytmical bass segment (where present in the track).|
|Sub-Bass||Not greatly elevated and rolled off on the extreme. Fast, precise. Matches well my taste in quality if not exactly in quantity (I would like it more elevated)|
|Mid Bass||Well defined and most of all controlled. Slightly more elevated than the sub-bass but equally fast, it’s tight and punchy. Nice for acoustic instruments especially.|
|Mids||Clear and defined although lean and unengaging, at times even thin. Not the right IEM for classic guitar solos like Paco de Lucia or the like.|
|Male Vocals||Recessed and unbodied. Clean due mid-bass politeness more than their specific presence.|
|Female Vocals||Less recessed and overall better than male. Still on the lean side though, and with a sharp tendency to sibilance which I could partially mitigate by a long tiprolling session ended onto reverse Starlines. Paired with a higher-rank DAC like Apogee Groove the extra level of reconstruction clarity makes females even thinner and less expressive.|
|Highs||Very present while not exagerated, quite extended and somewhat airy too. Nice for treble lovers, they often flood into fatigueing territory nonetheless. Similar to what noted about female vocals, a higher-category DAC offering cleaner treble reconstruction makes the whole treble section even more preponderant and quickly fatiguing.|
|Soundstage||Above average, but don’t expect a gothic cathedral space effect.|
|Imaging||Quite average, it gets messier on complex tracks due to lacking separation/layering skils (see below).|
|Details||All those trebles do pull out a lot of details from the high voice instruments, which is good although limited by scarce layering refinement. Certainly way above average for this price bracket.|
|Instrument separation||Separation and moreover layering is quite lacking. On complex tracks this becomes, simply put, a mess. Together with bright preponderance (which may be less of a problem for some) this is evidently the worst part of the product (and it will be for everyone I’m afraid).|
|Driveability||Not easy at all: 97dB at 32 Ohm impedance do require some amping. Forget getting good results from a bare phone.|
|Build||Very fancy looking resin. Better avoid trampling over them ofc course, but they don’t look fragile at all.|
|Fit||Can only be worn cable-up. They fit my ears perfectly!|
|Comfort||Their shape fits my concha and tragus perfectly allowing for totally confortable wearing. Sound analysis apart, this is another great aspect of this product. YMMV even dramatically ofc.|
|Isolation||Quite high, due to perfect and “fitting” positioning|
|Cable||I received my review unit with 2 cables, one of the two is very nice indeed: 4 strand braided silver plated OFC, with a flexible and un-itching sheath that’s almost completely inoffensive for my upper ear gorge.|
|Housing||Medical-grade skin-friendly resin|
|Driver(s)||Dual Dynamic Driver|
|Cable||1.2m 4-strand 5-core braided silver plated oxygen free copper single ended cable|
|Accessories & packaging||1 set of 4 pairs white silicon tips, 1 carry pouch|
|MSRP at this post time||$ 42,84 (street price < $30,00)|