Campfire Audio Andromeda Review: Holy Cow, This is a Dream, Awesomesauce!

Discussion in 'IEMs and Portable Gear' started by purr1n, May 13, 2016.

  1. thechansen

    thechansen Rando

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    Yeah, I wouldn’t even bother with the Fulla 2 if I had the Andromedas. Or with any IEMs for that matter. I mostly just use it with my Jubilees or HD650. And that’s just the amp I keep at work. I have the JDS Labs Atom and OL DAC for the bedroom and MCTH and a second OL DAC for the living room. I haven’t connected my Orions to either, just my DAP and phone.
     
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  2. ValarMorgouda

    ValarMorgouda Rando

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    Hey thanks for saving me a lot of trouble and money! I have been eyeballing the AK for a while now and now it'll be off my mind. I really hope Sony releases something like the ZX2 again, but with 4.4, since I already have all of these damn cables lol.
     
  3. Mithrandir41

    Mithrandir41 Friend

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    The se100 is sabre powered, it really won't compare favorably. I have the AK sr15, powered by Cirrus 43198 chips and I prefer it. I love the Sony players as well, but don't want to have to buy new 4.4mm cables.
     
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  4. ValarMorgouda

    ValarMorgouda Rando

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    I hear you! The cables are a pain but I've found relatively cheap ones. I keep hearing people say that 4.4 is the future, so you may have no choice eventually . I personally doubt it, though it would be nice. The connection is far more sturdy.

    The design is wild on that DAP! The screen is actually rotated a bit, right? How does the sound compare to the wm1a/zx300? Also, is there hiss with the Andromedas? Upon receiving my Andromeda S, I was bummed out to discover that both my WM1A and ZX300 have a hiss. I thought that it wouldn't be present at all from everything I'd read.

    That, along with another issue is making me question my purchase. After putting in the Andromedas, within 4 minutes or so, the nozzle end starts to develop moisture on it. It accumulates until it kind of beads up. It doesn't drip.

    It doesn't matter if I'm going from a cold to hot temp, reverse, or just putting them on in the morning when I wake up. I've never had this issue with another IEM and it makes me worry for their longevity, because the moisture can't be good for the drivers and other hardware. I emailed Campfire Audio, told them my worries and they didn't have much to say besides to suggest I get a moisture absorbing container that they sell.

    After about 10-15 minutes, the water disappears, but with having the Andromedas in my ear for 5hrs a day, it's cause for concern.

    These are the tips I use:

    https://www.amazon.com/gp/aw/d/B074DJ3PXC?psc=1&ref=ppx_pop_mob_b_pd_title

    Only thing I can think of that might be contributing somehow. I LOVE how they change the sound, btw. I could be crazy, but I feel like they expand the Soundstage, or create more separation.. idk I'm not the best critical listener yet.

    Anyway, if anyone has any thoughts on the moisture or hiss, I'd appreciate your input.

    Aside from these issues, I'm loving the sound more and more every day as I'm getting accustomed.
     
    Last edited: Jan 24, 2019
  5. Mithrandir41

    Mithrandir41 Friend

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    Only use the Fiio FH5 and Oppo PM3 with mine. I've only heard the Sony single ended, and it was a bit underwhelming and underpowered. But I also know that they're meant for balanced output. I heard that combination once two canjams ago and really liked it. The SR15 is less warm sounding than the Sony: maybe a tad more flat or neutral, but I'm relying on memory here. I really like the latest UI on the AK player
     
  6. ValarMorgouda

    ValarMorgouda Rando

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    Oh i see. I don't think I could do more flat that the Sony's. Even they were a bit hard to get used to, coming from a warm Fiio dap.

    You're probably right about the power, but the trade-off seems to be unparalleled battery life (as far as I know).
     
  7. Zed Bopp

    Zed Bopp Friend

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    I bought a used pair of Andros a week ago and I'm loving the fit, looks, sweet mids, resolution, SS and even some subs action. But, they're just painfully bright through my iPhone 6s Plus, esp when out & about in the rumble of traffic, even though these isolate very well.

    I tried using a downward sloping Spotify EQ to correct the sibilance from 6S+ but it's somehow still there... Even after some quite aggressive highs cuts. These do also lack weight of vocals, strings, snares etc. But I can kinda live with that with this great level of resolution.

    Percussive instruments like the crack of a snare, hi-hats, tambourines just smack into my brain way too hard, as do modern breathy vocals, some brighter "s", "t" and similar sounds. Sibilance, yeah that's precisely what it is to my ears. Much of this seems to do with my phones OI.

    They're much more balanced and warmer through the IEM-out of my ADI-2 DAC (very low OI), way better - though not quite there yet for me at home. I'm hearing some extra highs and lack of bass punch still, but this might be something a simple EQ could solve. The lows are somewhat bloaty and compressed with the ADI, though... Is this a sign of too low output impedance? Or maybe you just can't have everything... Man, is it hard to wrangle these beasts!

    In the end, I'm only interested in doing portable with 'em. I'm weighing my options... IEMatch? Low OI portable player? Sell 'em and move along?

    P.S. Could this be that extra 6,5k energy @Kunlun mentioned?
     
    Last edited: Feb 1, 2019
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  8. purr1n

    purr1n Finding his inner redneck

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    Play with tips. I used the Comply with the filters to tame the highs. @Bill-P found a good set that wasn't foam. IEMatch might fix it. You will never hear punch from the Andros. iPhone is too brittle sounding as a source. There is a reason people here use the Sony ZX2 or ZX300 with the Andros - slightly higher Zout and smooth highs.
     
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  9. Zed Bopp

    Zed Bopp Friend

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    I'm using the largest foam tips provided, are they Complys or just very similar? Yeah, I'm afraid that lack of punch is a big problem in the long run for me.

    I've found going mobile needs one very different tuning vs at home in relative silence. I'm pretty sure my EQ'd HD800 and LCD-2 would sound kind of shrill even if they had some passive noise cancellation. This is why the muffled Momentum V.1 "over-ear" still makes sense FR-wise in public.

    Being a pessimist, I bet there isn't an IEM that has something close to this kind of resolution & SS with real punch... (Through a phone & costing under 1k)?
     
    Last edited: Feb 1, 2019
  10. mscott58

    mscott58 Friend

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    An IEM with resolution, SS & punch? = yes (Solaris)
    Through an phone and costing under $1K? = Nope, sorry
     
  11. YMO

    YMO Friend

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    You think it's the same with the W1MA DAPs?
     
  12. purr1n

    purr1n Finding his inner redneck

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    1A works. Use EQ if bass too much. The golden 1Z had this pervasive warmth that could not be corrected by EQ.

    Like laid-back Andro with physicality. Slightly better resolution, more layered stage and depth. The DD bass driver isn't as textured say something like the EX1000, but the tradeoff is that it's a fast DD that can keep up with the BAs up top. Solaris does pretty well from a phone. Its impedance curve isn't as reactive as Andro's.
     
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  13. GoodEnoughGear

    GoodEnoughGear Evil Dr. Shultz‎

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    I could never find the OI for the V30, but idly searched yesterday to find someone measured it at 1.5ohm, which would explain why I find my travel V30 with Andromeda pairing enjoyable. It's no ZX2, but it's no slouch for a phone.
     
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  14. gixxerwimp

    gixxerwimp Professional tricycle rider

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    @Zed Bopp Bill's foam trick and ZX2 tame the highs for me. Use HD6xx foam or similar.
    I tried the Shure wax guards but found them a bit too stifling.
     
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  15. gixxerwimp

    gixxerwimp Professional tricycle rider

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    Forgot to mention, a copper litz cable like the PWaudio No. 5 or Han Sound Zen helps smooth the highs too. Both of these cables also have much better ergonomics than the stock Litz.

    All the above mods combined really smooth out the Andro's highs for me.
     
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  16. Bill-P

    Bill-P Level 42 Mad Wizard

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    Yeah, also a well burned-in Andromeda actually does have smoother treble as well IME. Mine has seen a lot of use by now and a stock Solaris unit without burn-in is actually not as smooth sounding.

    Me thinks Campfire nailed the whole smooth treble thing pretty well.
     
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  17. gepardcv

    gepardcv Wow, I made it this far without being a friend?

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    For the first year or so of listening to the Andromeda, I thought it would not benefit much from EQ. But, a few months ago, I discovered AutoEq, and started playing with it. Among other experiments, I used it to make a 5-band PEQ preset suitable for an RME ADI-2 DAC (or Pro), going from oratory1990 measurements. The initial result was excessive and sounded harsh, but after a few adjustments, I ended up with the following settings (suitable for any parametric equalizer, peak filters used throughout):

    band 1: +3.0dB, 20Hz, Q 0.5
    band 2: +1.5dB, 63Hz, Q 0.9
    band 3: -3.0dB, 210Hz, Q 0.6
    band 4: +2.5dB, 2.9kHz, Q 2.4
    band 5: +2.0dB, 4.9kHz, Q 0.9

    I've been using the Andromeda with this setup for 3-4 months now, and finally feel comfortable enough with it to publish. I can still enjoy this IEM without EQ (when I'm away from the ADI-2), but this adds a lot of clarity to its sound.
     
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  18. Colgin

    Colgin Friend

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    Will give it a try this weekend once I figure out how to do the EQ bands on the RME. I have not used the EQ feature on mine yet.
     
  19. TwoEars

    TwoEars Friend

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    When I had the Andromedas the only EQ I really wanted to do was tame that 8-9 kHz peak. I tried with foam tips but it wasn't enough. So from 8kHz and up I did about -5dB, the rest I left unchanged. I'm generally not a big fan of EQ-ing the midrange 500Hz to 4Khz, so much music and vocals live in that area.
     
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  20. Zed Bopp

    Zed Bopp Friend

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    I basically gave up on (and sold my) Andromeda because of too much highs. That peak you mentioned just might be the culprit. Also, no matter how much I EQ'd I couldn't get any real sense of low-end weight out of them. They were better out of ADI-2 DAC than my iPhone, but still pretty thin.
     

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