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Perfect example of audiophile snake oil. Anyone that knows anything about USB knows it's a digital signal, there is not option to make things sound better since it's digital. Either the bits get there, or they don't. This can't do anything to improve sound.
As a first time Planar user I'm very pleased with how these sound. I'm sure if some tweaking is done (as mentioned in other comments) sound can get even better. At first I thought a small punch in mids and highs was missing but I got used to it pretty quickly. The soundstage blew me away and now it's hard to put them down.
Unfortunately, the design is awful. As others mentioned, your head has to be small for them to fit perfectly because they don't pivot vertically. Worst part is that the top cushion that sits on your head started peeling off after one week of use. If I ever decided to use them "on the go", top cushion would peel off immediately. I expected it wouldn't be so cheap. That being said, using them behind desk or around the house is probably the only option.
I'd buy them again, but I would be more careful with the cushion material. I think they are a great start for someone who consideres to dive into Planar technology.
Short story long -
I have the Audio Hekili for comparison, notes on my review below
"...sound like a concert hall with main emphasis on the bass although mids and highs are still clear and non-sibilant...warm, v-shape sound signature ... Soundstage, tonality, and imaging are great. They're also not difficult to drive."
Ehhiku is a bit bigger(might not reflect clearly on the pics but you will feel the difference when you're A/B testing both)
stems are retained so no changes there, a minor gripe I discovered is that AZLA Sednas will lose grip over time and may come off more easily as you use them, probably due to my sweaty head. I've lost a pair after some months of daily use because the stem doesn't have an edge that the tips can grab on to so you need to use the tightest wrapping tips that you can possibly fit(Moondrop's tips are a good example, and maybe comply foams)
at the same volume setting, the playback is louder on the ehhiku so they're slightly easier to drive
more forward on the mids and highs, they essentially traded atmosphere/soundstage for clarity, and made the overall presentation more intense and in your face. I'd describe it as the Hekili has all of the players be spread apart and all of them are playing at a relatively similar volume, but you can hear the bass without trying to look for it whereas the Ehhiku sets the bassist and the kickdrums a bit towards the back, while the pianos, guitars and vocalist are front and center. You can still hear the bass but you'd have to focus. Setting the volume to where the bass matches the Hekili on this set will cause pain in the mids/highs. The clarity on the other hand is where this set shines. Micro instruments and chimes and flourishes are just there, no need to focus just to find them. They are similar timbre-wise so no discernable change over the quality of the vocals/strings other than the loudness.
they're less expensive than the previous iterations(this costs 100USD less, 199 vs 299) that I feel is due to the config of the drivers and maybe the cable as well(?) the tips and case are relatively similar(different color on the case and stock cable)no cable qc issues this time so that is a relief
Long story short - Conclusion
Absolute value for the money. They are great at the technicals-instrument separation is great, as well as no discernable distortion at high volumes. Soundstage is decent, and has a fairly neutral-bright sound signature which is weird considering the setup implies a bass-heavy config(3DD-4BA vs 1DD-7BA on the Hekili) so you may want to use a warmer source than a neutral one if you prefer a more relaxed sound which is also the case for me.
Great fit and great audio. The only down side is the small wire coming from to the headphone itself likes to keep its shape when you just unrolled them, just need to give it a small twist and it's back to normal.
I had purchase one for myself
I was looking a decent pair of IEM for using them when outside home. CHU did deliver a great performance on sound (music and calls) 5/5 for me especially in this price range.
I really like this IEM. I have much higher price IEMs but I listen this the most. If you love bass then you will like this.
Amazing quality cable. Absolutely love the flat wire 8 core designs. The flat wire quality is even better than I expected it to be. The pin and the plug is very solid and high quality. For a price this affordable and for a quality this good, I am definitely willing to pay even more for a new interchangeable plug type in the future (if it'll ever happen). Nicely done, Tripowin.
Excellent sound quality which, for the price, is terrific value. This could be all you need to enjoy your music library and save on unnecessary upgrades.
The only downside is that they lack some juice for the basses but the sound is crystal clear, perfect for voices