Campfire Audio Orion Measurements and Impressions

Discussion in 'IEM Measurements' started by purr1n, Aug 17, 2016.

  1. purr1n

    purr1n Finding his inner redneck

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    Campfire Audio Orion Measurements

    DSC_2822.JPG

    Quick subjective notes:

    I am actually impressed. At first, I wasn't super fond of them - because I was coming from the Andromedas. C'mon, that's not exactly fair coming down from Campfire Audio's TOTL IEM (which is like the one IEM to rule them all - at least for me) to this entry-level IEM. The best thing to do is to put the good stuff away, wait a few days, and start over from here. To be honest, I've really grown to like them quite a bit in the past few days.

    Do they have the separation, layering, goose-bump liveliness of the Andromeda? Not quite. And why are we comparing to the Andromeda anyways. Well the answer is because they seem to have a frequency response and timbre very similar to the Andromeda, but without the extension at the extremes. (This is from the Sony ZX2 as a source, but I also suspect the Orion will have a less reactive impedance curve.) A more mid-centric Andromeda would be a good way to put it. The bass is a little bit more smeared, the overall sound is not as clear, the articulation and speed is a notch behind; but really it's not all that far off.

    In essence, this is an Andromeda Lite. If you can't afford the Andromeda, get this. But really, if you can afford to spend $350, just move up and stretch for the Andromeda. I've kept the UERM for years, and the Andromeda was the only thing that unseated it. This is coming from someone who doesn't collect shit.

    I'll let the IEM nerds tell us about the technology, number of drivers, number of testicles, erectness and alignment of shafts, TWERKs, and all that other crap I really don't care about.

    See general measurement notes before digesting the plots below: http://www.superbestaudiofriends.org/index.php?threads/note-on-iem-measurements-changelog.2153/

    Campfire Audio Orion Frequency Response (0db REL = 100db SPL)
    Orion FR.png

    Campfire Audio Orion Distortion (at above FR levels)
    Orion L HD.jpg
    Orion R HD.jpg

    Higher D2 compared to Andromeda

    Campfire Audio Orion Impedance and Electrical Phase
    Orion Z.png
    It's kind of screwy like Andromeda. I measured twice, checked with a resistor, and also took a DC measurement from the multi-meter that read 4.6 ohms. Higher source impedance will introduce more of the diffuse field effect and also increase mid and high treble. May not necessarily be a bad thing.
     
    Last edited: Aug 23, 2016
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  2. Merrick

    Merrick A lidless ear

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    Number of testicles is a meaningless number until we know the alignment of the shafts. What good is six testicles if the shafts align in a cross-stitch formation?
     
  3. Huxleigh

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

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    I know this probably reads like a "Me too!" post, but, for what it's worth, I found the Orion to be the most enjoyable single-driver BA IEM that I've heard. FitEar F111 comes in second, but Orion had significantly better technicalities.
     
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  4. purr1n

    purr1n Finding his inner redneck

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    I think the ER4S might be competitive, but it's been forever since I"ve heard it, and TBH, I didn't enjoy the leaner signature and slightly fatiguing nature of the E4RS as much.
     
  5. Serious

    Serious Inquisitive Frequency Response Plot

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    This is a single driver BA IEM? Seems like Campfire Audio has their target curves right. How's the coherency compared to the Andromeda or other multi-BA IEMs?
     
  6. purr1n

    purr1n Finding his inner redneck

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    LOL, so I guess it is a single testicle IEM.

    No coherency issues (as with ER4S or Shozy). In retrospect, I think the more impressive thing is that the Andromeda, a three way IEM, has no coherency issues. As for the FR, I believe this @OJneg guy once said: this Ken Ball guy has ears!
     
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  7. Huxleigh

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

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    I imagine there's some truth to that, but I couldn't even get close to finding a comfortable fit with the ER4S. So no comment, there.

    The Orion suffers from the same drawbacks common to all single-driver BA IEMs, but offers up fantastic resolution and cohesion in return. Without getting into specific comparisons, I'm one of those nerds who buys into the theory/marketing that the presentation of a single-driver BA designs offers esoteric benefits.

    I'd probably still own an Orion, if not for the fact that I wasn't a huge fan of its fit either. And if mine didn't come with that unpleasant "tinsel" crap... ugh. The new single-ended cable looks much improved, although I'm rather leery of what appears to be a (still) hefty chunk of memory wire.
     
    Last edited: Aug 17, 2016
  8. purr1n

    purr1n Finding his inner redneck

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    Orion, like the other CA IEMs have a shallow fit and may not work for everyone's ears. The ER4S need to be shoved way way into the hole, and with the proper condoms, I mean tips.
     
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  9. Serious

    Serious Inquisitive Frequency Response Plot

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    No real coherency issues, but isn't the coherency and non-phase-murkyness-due-to-crossover-filters better with the single drivers? In my short listening session I didn't find the Andro to fool me into thinking that it's a single driver IEM. More coherent than UERM, but not perfect. Still, it's not a big issue to me, even with the UERM.

    I'm pretty sure the Andro has 5 testicles. Oh, I see now. I misread. 5 driver, 3 way.
    Maybe because the Andromeda doesn't have super impressive distortion measurements in the first place :p? The UERM and DBA-02 mk1 had nearly identical distortion measurements.
     
    Last edited: Aug 17, 2016
  10. purr1n

    purr1n Finding his inner redneck

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    I suspect there is more to it, but I may be wrong. Stay tuned for the 11 o'clock news. If I don't find what I suspect, then I was wrong and full of shit.
     
  11. jowls

    jowls Never shitposts (please) - Friend

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    Is Orion as particular about output impedance as Andromeda? Any opportunity for measuring with something <1ohm?
     
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  12. k4rstar

    k4rstar On a journey... somewhere

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    Sold my Orion to upgrade to the Andro and I'm still not sure if I made the right choice since I was so happy with it. Pretty amazing what CA was able to pull off with a single BA. Was patiently twiddling thumbs for these measurements and impressions hoping they would be positive so others could hear about this overshadowed IEM.
     
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  13. Serious

    Serious Inquisitive Frequency Response Plot

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    Aren't the measurements done with the M2U on low gain? Pretty sure the impedance curve of this (being a single driver) won't be as crazy as Andro.
     
  14. purr1n

    purr1n Finding his inner redneck

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    Impedance curve measurement added in first post.
     
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  15. Augmentin

    Augmentin MOT - DUNU IEM Company

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  16. Serious

    Serious Inquisitive Frequency Response Plot

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    Thanks for this. I always like to see the IEC approved IEM measurements even though I'm not a fan of the target curves.
    Looks like the Orion has more 2nd order distortion than other BA IEMs, especially the multi driver ones like the UERM. Generally the measurements look like an Audio-Technica ATH IM02 with more 2nd order distortion and less extended treble. The IM02 seems to have a similar bass-midrange driver with a supertweeter attached. Isn't the Audio-Technica the cheaper one?
     
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  17. smithj

    smithj Acquaintance

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    I've got nothing to add here about the sound quality (its very good) but I think its important to note that the Orion hisses like mad out of most basic consumer electronics that have a 3.5mm output. Same issue from an iPhone 6S, a Nintendo DS, a few random cheapo MP3 players, and my laptop. These same things aren't a problem for my Koss KSC75, which used to be my portable drivers.

    Just something to be aware of. On that note, is there a recommended way to reduce the hissing without screwing with the FR?
     
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  18. purr1n

    purr1n Finding his inner redneck

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    rejiggered measurements posted.
     
  19. k4rstar

    k4rstar On a journey... somewhere

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    New measurements look a lot more accurate to what I was hearing, w.r.t treble being shelved next to the 2k peak.
     
  20. purr1n

    purr1n Finding his inner redneck

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    Yup. My subjective impressions were that Orion FR was similar to Andromeda, but more midcentric / rolled at the ends relative to Andromeda. Rejiggered Andromeda measurements just posted now show this better. For a single driver, really can't ask it to do the same things. Still I'll be happy to have these until the Andromeda get back from the loaner. Then these go on the loaner.
     
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