Overview headphones FiiO FH5 — technology, style and sound

Overview headphones FiiO FH5 — technology, style and sound

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One of the immutable truths of the world of portable technology is the fact that the FiiO as no one else know how to understand where the market is heading and follow him. Zastaviv a good chunk of the bottom of the headphone segment, the company decided to go “up” and presented chetyrehdverny hybrid model FH5.

In the development came with a distinctive care, in the role of a woofer for low frequencies acts 10 mm speaker with a diaphragm of polymer nanocomposite, the rest of the range is given to reinforcing drivers from Knowles. CQ is used ED30262, RF is responsible spartnik TWFK-31082. Supplements is milled housing made of metal, with the special spiral channels designed to improve the sound. The price tag is as expected grew, but remained significantly below most other models similar to the configuration for FH5 asking around $ 260, although the price may vary slightly, depending on taxes and the appetites of distributors.

Specifications

  • Transducers: dynamic 10 mm + 3 × balanced armature (Knowles)
  • Frequency range: 15 Hz ~ 40 kHz
  • Sensitivity: 112 dB/mW
  • Impedance: 19Ω
  • Maximum power: 100 mW
  • Cable: 120 cm, with detachable MMCX connectors, silver-plated copper
  • Plug: 3.5 mm TRS

Packing and delivery

The box is made in the standard for FiiO style, minimalistic black jacket, a black cardboard box inside. On top of the cradle is lined headphones, below placed plastic storage case, fabric case with zipper, a brush for cleaning and a great set of tips, neatly arranged in special nests:

  • 3 pairs of “balanced” sound bits
  • 3 pairs of tips, emphasizing midrange “vocal”
  • 3 pairs of ear tips, accent NCH
  • 3 pairs of foam tips

In General, the accessories product managers clearly did not skimp.

Design and comfortable wearing

Over the appearance of headphones FiiO really did a good job. The company’s designers were inspired by either sea shells, or fruit of the Fig tree and made a very effective case of an alloy of aluminum with magnesium. The appearance is complementary to the corrugated surface of faceplate and covering them with a Golden rim. In FiiO tried to work and sound the part: nose earphone contains three separate sound channel, one for each band, the output they are covered with mesh to protect from dust and debris. Inside of case is made of special spiral channel, amplifying low-frequency dynamics and filtering it MF and HF component, this technology is called TURBO S. probably we about it still will hear.

From the point of view of ergonomics headphones are also a good anatomical shape and lack of sharp corners provide a comfortable wearing, only, perhaps, the exception may be owners of very very small auricles. The sound channel of the earphone goes out to the desired angle, so sound insulation is average for the form factor level, in spite of his small length. I have seen online reviews from people who lacked the long nose for proper fit, but I have similar problems with the FH5 does not arise.

Of course, the wire is made replaceable, it uses MMCX connectors, they are tight, but still disconnect them, so the reliability can not be doubted, although the founder of FiiO on Head-Fi mentioned that they are dissatisfied with existing products on the market connectors and are working on their own version, but it is a future question. Included cable is quite unusual, silver plated monocrystal copper enclosed in insulation of thermoplastic polyurethane that gives the cable strength and durability, but not at the expense of softness and ease of use. Interestingly, the lower fan-out wires left and right channels are in parallel, not suites, as is done in most cases. The plug is angled and large enough wire is not prone to microphonic effect, a little hard in the cold and generally leaves a pleasant impression. This time, in order to put the balanced cable, so it will have to be bought separately, the benefit of the FiiO has released a series of wires of different design with all chassis connectors: 3.5 and 2.5 mm, and Pentaconn.

In General, in my subjective opinion, the exterior of the headphones turned out comparable to that of many flagship models: design, build quality, comfort — everything is done at a high level.

Sound

To listen following equipment was used.

Before listening headphones were heated for 48 hours, the change in sound was observed the first 2 hours.

Apparently, the FiiO tired of complaints about the HF peak in their models F9, so for the next headphone FH1 they decided to darken the sound, well, or at least make it less bright. The idea resonated with a wide audience, so FH5 decided to tuningware in a similar manner, making them comfortable enough treble. Overall, the headphones were made with an eye to the “massive” sound, but with an eye to the lovers of more expensive feed.

Bass made a little accented, or , to speak more correctly, he stands out a bit among a slightly drooping lower midrange. Have decent bass weight and gravitas, demonstrating why hybrid models use a dynamic emitter. The bass offers a very good speed and texture, but of course devoid of dryness, typical of most reinforcement models. Low frequencies go quite deep, almost to the limit of the headphones this form factor, apparently technology S. TURBO makes itself felt. Control bass are also good, they almost always know their place and stick to it, not napasa the neighboring territory.

The midrange frequency response on the graph have the form of a rising line, the lower half of the midrange quantitatively weakened, and Vice versa VSC — accented, “height”, this difference is about 10 dB, is not critical, but the way headphone affected. The middle has a good resolution, but it is not reinforcement-dry. FiiO was able to give MF a sufficient weight to ensure their decent for this segment, the level of realism. Headphones are well passed the vocals, especially female, perhaps the only flaw in their midrange can be called the lack of sharpness on some of the tracks (in my case it was the recording of Iron Maiden from the album “Powerslave”, which is funny — the same Metallica played pretty well), however, lively and natural music does not have this problem. Imaginary scene a little more than average in depth and width, with the width a bit more depth. The separation of plans is not perfect, but good tools are an adequate size and correctly positioned, in General, the “spatial” parameters headphones is not prohibitive-perfect, but quite decent.

For the upper frequency used the updated version of the most popular parenica, but tried to do everything to this part of the band sounded comfortable. May be, of course, is running Vctory will be unhappy, but I think such cases will not be much. Judging by the reviews online, some people do not like the rise of midrange in the region of 2 kHz, but to my ears no problem there, the usual step for many models IEM that improves the readability of upper mid. But I digress, HF have a normal resolution, right play the attack and decay, although the separation of the plans, of course, they do not have. The upper frequencies are carefully clamped so as not to create problems with bad sources or records, on the one hand, it deprives them of audiophile subtle overtones and attenuation, on the other — happy all music lovers easier.

And, of course, few comparisons. Of course, to compare these headphones with all that exists in the market I can’t, so I will limit myself to a few models. I must say that I deliberately did not make comparisons with megadrivers hybrids of other companies with a price tag of above $ 400, which appeared recent years are many, since the price gap is obvious and these models are not competitors FH5.

FiiO FH1 of Course, the price difference here is very great, but it was Junior FH are the closest analog to the “fives” on the General manner of filing. At the same time, when you listen to FH1, they sound good, a little dark, but very involving and spectacular headphones. But the transition to FH5 tightens their sound in all respects, creating the effect of “the sleeping shroud” — better resolution, emotions, the micro-contrast.

FiiO F9 Pro overall, this comparison holds true for non-pro version. Comparison of models shows the departure of the company from attempts to create a “audiophile” sound (in the Asian sense) in favor of a more universal tuning. FH5 sound less harsh on the treble, deeper bass and, perhaps, a little more lively midrange. Therefore, if you are not a fan of HF, the choice is almost obvious.

iBasso IT03 Despite the close price category, hybrids iBasso tuningova dissimilar in style, they are more neutral, have a little better detail, slightly less significant (especially in midrange), so IT03 better able to cope with the aggressive material, and horse FH5 — natural acoustic instruments.

Campfire Audio. in Spite of the different schemas, the “Comet” is also somewhat similar to FH5 according to the General manner of filing. They, of course, less weight and physicality in the bass, but they coherently and in detail on the MF. HF FH5 is still a little better, if not use Comet with replaceable wire.

LZ A5 one More close at the price of hybrids, is quite different in sound. LZ A5 denser and adarna on bass and have a much more accentuated treble, which makes them flow markedly V-figurative, with all its pluses and minuses, and the choice between the two models is totally subjective.

Dunu Falcon-C Another model, about which we can say “little in common”. The model Dunu less bass, and they are drier and denser, on the count they are slightly lighter weight that allows FH5 sound more impressive on HF, perhaps parity, so as that of the Falcon-C top more, but it is a little worse decorated than FH5.

Compatibility

I think you can say that FH5 is created for players, preferably at least initial-middle segment, listen to them with phones and tablets not a lot of sense. Of course, first and foremost, they sound good with most FiiO devices, and subjectively, I like their couple with M7, but also with other devices like iBasso or Shanling they do not fold. The main thing — that the player was not quite so “meaty” and assertive in the bass.

Stylistically, the model is quite universal, with the exception of the brutal genres in case you are used to stressed-aggressive presentation of the material. The recording quality earphones are moderately tolerant, so on a conditional scale of fault-finding get 6 points out of 10.

As usual, a few tracks as example

Gotan Project — Chunga”s revenge Another track from the excellent French band, mixing expressive tango with electronic music to form a unique alloy. Here FH5 show itself in full glory: the powerful beats of the rhythm party effectively contrasted with tools of the upper middle, giving the track a compelling liveliness.

Brazil Beat — Aguas de Marco the Summer is over, and you never visited? Well, then at least listen to this track. Rich lounge, mixed with Latin jazz in the supply FH5 takes so spectacular design of bass and vocals that with closed eyes you can imagine yourself somewhere on the sea, a sun lounger with a cocktail… Then open my eyes and be back in an office chair at the computer.

Röyksopp — Poor Leno You are too hot? The August heat squeezes all the juices and the brain refuses to work? Come to the aid of the famous electronics out of the country, knowing a lot about the cold of Norway. Intense light instruments and percussion melody reminiscent of summer in the Northern tundra when the sun shines almost the whole day, but not until the end to win cool. FH5 and there perfectly cope with its task perfectly conveying not only the rhythm section, but all the nuances of the rest of the range.

Insights

Headphones was interesting, tasty, if not kill all the competitors sound, excellent quality performance and rich delivery. While FH5 very adequately evaluated, which adds to their competitiveness.