I recently had an opportunity to audition a pair of privately-owned Oriveti OH500 IEM – 1 dynamic and 4 balanced armature drivers – for a week and here’s my personal experience with them.
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|Rich, nice timbre & personality.||Careful pairing required. Avoid budget sources and destkop amps.|
|Well calibrated warm-balanced tonality.||Midbass transients a bit too slow.|
|Good lowmids and vocals.||Something more could have been dared on the brilliance section.|
|Very good highmids and presence.|
|Very good technicalities, with special mention to imaging.|
Full Device Card
Sources: Apogee Groove + Liquid Spark + iEMatch / Questyle QP1R / Sony NW-A55 mrWalkman – Acoustune ET07 eartips – Linsoul LSC08 6N OCC single crystal copper cable – lossless 16-24/44.1-192 FLAC tracks.
|Tonality||When accurately paired Oriveti OH500 have a nicely calibrated warm, rich timbre. Their tonality is almost balanced, presentation is a U-shape, with a distinct accent on low tones also due to relatively more relaxed transients down there.|
|Sub-Bass||Elevated and extended, Oriveti OH500 produce significant rumble and give very good body to sub-bass frequences. Succumbs to midbass in some occasions which is a sharp downside for me as I’m a die-hard detailed bass fun. YMMV.|
|Mid Bass||Full-bodied, even buttery and quite well controlled. Well tuned, quite sided in terms of love/hate. The slightest impedance matching issue will deplete this section into a muddy, bloated mess.|
|Mids||Lowmids are unrecessed and actually very well resolved. A good effort has been applied on Oriveti OH500 to calibrate transients progression from the relatively slower bass to the snappier higher frequencies, not always succeeding in the intent – texturing and naturality are great though. Higher mids are just wonderful: very well tuned, bodied, flutey sometimes, layered and articulated, free from any sibilance or glare when correctly biased. Love them.|
|Male Vocals||Moderately forward, and especially very natural, articulated and textured.|
|Female Vocals||A bit furtherly forward compared to males, and fuller. Very well rendered, textured, articulated while always unoffensive. Well done.|
|Highs||Presence on Oriveti OH500 is masterfully tuned. Crisp, airy, detailed and unscreechy, I really appreciated how they pushed the accent to the limit there yet always staying below the excess-bright threshold. Brilliance is rolledoff though, which is a pity in a sense as it takes some spatial sense away and some extra fizzyness that I specially like on acoustic jazz (YMMV).|
|Soundstage||Oriveti OH500 proved quite capable in following non-budget DACs on rendering a 3D space, with sizable width and a quite significant depth.|
|Imaging||Very good. Instruments are properly and precisely cast accross the stage while relative forward vocals tend to occupy the center but in a polite way.|
|Details||The relative slowness down low is not so serious as to eat up all midbass detail which is in fact present, and quite nice. Still, nothing compared to what the 4 BAs prove able to deliver: a host of small and micro details which are enriching the experience while never scanting into the excessively thin.|
|Instrument separation||Layering and instrument separation is also very good accross the spectrum on Oriveti OH500 with the sole midbass area showing a relatively lower performance due to the often somewhat preponderant midbass.|
|Driveability||Extremely picky, due to the very low (12 Ω) impedance paired with a quite significant sensitivity: low quality sources like phones, budget DAPs or DAC-AMPs, and especially desktop amps will have a serious hard time avoiding skewing Oriveti OH500’s presentation into an excess or warmth, or inducing early high-mids glare. A mid-tier, or even better a high-end DAP is frankly advised. In lack of better alternatives adopting an iEMatch or similar tool is strongly recommended.|
|Build||Oriveti OH500 housings are made of moulded resin and they appear quite sturdy. I find their smooth finish very elegant, but I’m not so sure how resistant it will be to scratches.|
|Fit||Nozzles are quite short but they are a sort of natural extention of the main housing shape’s protrusion. For this reason – at least for how my outer ears are shaped – I better had to select shorter tips, and even then the result is that the bulk of the housing will not fully rest inside my concha but will partly bend outside, a bit compromising on stability.|
|Comfort||Housings surface is very smooth and that’s great, but positioning is not ideal at least for me, and so consequently is comfort.|
|Isolation||Not more than average, due to the fit situation.|
|Cable||Stock cable seemed to increase the low frequency accent, irregardless of the pairing. I happened to have a Linsoul LSC08 to swap on, which proved more neutral.|
|Housing||Handmade Resin Earphone Body|
|Driver(s)||4 Knowles Balanced Armatures + one 8MM Dynamic Driver.|
|Cable||Handmade Class 8 Wires (Silver Plated Copper) Braided Detachable Cable|
|Package & Accessories||Leather carry case, 2 sets of S/M/L silicon tips, 2 pairs of M foam tips, 2 pairs of 2-flange silicon tips, cleaning tool, airplane 2-plugs adaper, 6.35-3.5 adapter.|
|MSRP at this post time||$499,00|
The most important note and warning for whoever plans to adopt Oriveti OH500 (or any other very low impedance driver for that matter) is remembering that 12 Ohm is no joke for the majority of low-tier mobile sources, and most if not all desktop headphone amps.
What can – and shall – happen pairing OH500 to an inadequate source is a significant bump-up taking place in the mid-bass area – where OH500 does not need a further embodiement, if something it would actually need some slimming care if you ask me. Another unwanted possible mishap, caused by their low impedance and relatively high sensitivity (110dB), is high mids getting into sharply glaring behaviour as soon as you start raising the volume a bit.
To make some explicit examples, the above 100% happens when pairing to Hidizs AP80Pro, Hiby R3, R3Pro, R5 and R6Pro, Fiio X3-III and BTR5, and I presume many other same-tier direct competitors. Ditto for desktop amps e.g. Liquid Spark or ZEN CAN. In all those cases adopting an iEMatch or a similar impedance adapter is more than a rec, really.
Sony NW-A55 is OK in terms of amping, but I find its warm tonality not an ideal addition to Oriveti OH500’s already warm soul. QP1R is a 100% good, so are Lotoo Paw 6000 and Gold Touch. Same for iFi Micro iDSD Signature, provided its built-in iEMatch is switch on at Ultra setting.
When properly paired Oriveti OH500 are very good IEMs. I mainly love their timbre, their distinct personality: they are full-bodied, authoritative, they fill the space with almost tactile sound, in all segments of the spectrum.
To my very personal musical preferences, mid-bass transients are a tad too relaxed – I do prefer snappier plucks and punchier hits down there – yet OH500 never seem to lose control and delivers nice lows texture and layering at all times. What I prefer are highmids and presence trebles though. Those are really something: a wonderful compromise between fullness and detail, crispness and air.
This article previously appeared here.