Fiio FD-7 iem Impressions and 3 new dynamic iems comparison Gear ipod touch -> Fiio FD-7 & Dunu Zen Pro Yggdrasil -> Cavalli Liquid Gold X -> 7hz Timless Yes, thats very unfair, but I don’t have an amp that plays well with the Zen Pro or FD-7 and the way I use the Zen Pro right now I don’t really need one. The iFI Nano doesn’t really sound great with either for some reason. All listening done with Lunashops 7N OCC copper cable - with angled MMCX connectors | with straight MMCX connectors Disclaimer: I couldn’t really wrap my head around the sound of the FD-7 very well at this moment for whatever reason (it’s been a bad week in multiple ways) so this is just meant to be a primer for loaner impressions. What I can say with certainty is that the FD-7 is another good DD iem all of a sudden, and along with the Zen Pro and 7hz has a place in the market. I think all 3 are good options and there will be people who like each of these over the other two. All off them are must hear iems for iem lovers especially those who don’t like BA’s. Fiio FD-7 (with midrange tuning nozzle) (it comes with 3 tuning nozzles labeled bass, mids, treble) Strengths Even FR except for a small treble bump that makes cymbals stand out a bit No upper midrange DD harshness Smoother than the Zen Pro from the upper mids down Resolving but not as resolving or fast sounding as the Zen Pro or as resolving as the 7hz good bass response. Not as punchy or controlled or hard hitting as the Zen Pro, but I think it sounds really good and sometimes more realistic than the bass of the Zen Pro, It has more weight to it, where as the Zen Pro is all punch. Bass extends all the way down with authority Good instrument separation Weaknesses Slight treble emphasis They don’t have the sharpness of the Zen Pro, but they have something else going on with their own driver. It’s less pronounced than the Zen Pro’s sharpness, but there’s still something there- I’d call it a bit of an edge. Maybe it’s just the sound of Beryllium drivers. They can have a bit of a plastic tone that isn’ t as natural sounding as the other two iems Conclusion Another good DD iem suddenly on the market. I’d say these aren’t as technically impressive as the Zen Pro, but they are still technicalliy very good and have their own strengths and unique sound that is smoother than the Zen Pro. I think some people will prefer these to both the Zen Pro and 7hz. Dunu Zen Pro Strengths Fast transient response Very resolving to the point of equalling many good full size headphones Good tone Even Frequency Response from bass to treble Never harsh in upper mids or treble No peaks Good instrument seperation Very controlled bass that is punchy, fast and hard hitting with extension all the way down (I would love to know what songs people are listening to when they claim lack of bass extension with the Zen Pro. I think people throw this around rather randomly as a very subjective ill defined descriptor of something that has nothing to do with actual extension) Weaknesses The only weakness I hear is a sharp tone to the sound especially in the midrange to upper midrange. I didn’t hear this when I first reviewed them, because they are so much better than the CA Solaris I just didn’t hear it, but I do now, and though some people think it is caused by an 8k peak, I don’t hear this, I hear overshoot in the burst response and think this is responsible. I still do not hear any peaks. This sharpness messes with the tone of vocals and other instruments and can create an unnatural kind of shimmer to the leading edges of notes. These are not smooth sounding iems. Conclusion Great dynamic iems with even FR that are best for those who crave technical performance and speed over smoothness. If you like a more laid back sound or smoother sound, the 7hz or FD-7 is a better choice. Timeless 7hz Strengths Extremely smooth, even FR Very natural tonality No peaks anywhere Very resolving to the point of equaling or bettering many full size headphones Ortho acoustics are taken care of well, the driver is moving fast and is properly damped and there are no backwave or resonance issues They have a bigger sound than any other iem I’ve heard and can move more air due to the larger ortho driver which gives them a special sound. They can be driven by home amps with no buzz issues so you don’’t need special amps Price is really low for the performance Weaknesses Maybe the attacks are too soft for some people? I think they’re pretty perfect though The bass isn’t as tight and punchy and well damped as it could be They can be too bassy out of certain amps like directly out of the iPod touch. But with the right amps, the bass is neutral. I can’t really think of any more... Conclusion My personal favorite sounding iem I’ve heard. Cheap, can be used with desktop amps, super resolving for an iem with a very natural tone and natural attacks for an unbeatable price. I think every SBAF’er should own or try these.