Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Sennheiser HD202 Review

Got this Sennheiser HD202 from Jaben malaysia last few months, it's not my main headphones but my family desktop needs a personal audio but my family does not need a very good setup so I thought of buying this. This headphones cost around RM166. The build is pretty basic,everything is made of pastic and there is this kinda comfortable paddings on both side of the headphones and one on the top. From what I saw and feel, the padding quality is not that lasting, I got some comments from other users that their padding coating comes out after a certain time. In the package it includes a 3.5mm to 6.5mm adapter, so that you could plug into a HiFi or a Amplifier, a cable organiser an the headphones itself.
This headphones really comfortable when you first put it on your head, it is light and the clamp is not that tight so you can't really feel anything when you are enjoying it. But after 30 minutes, your ears starts to sweat, because of it's PVC coating, it is kinda makes you feel hot. Noise isolation is not that good, I had a fan at the back blowing at me and I can easily hear the sound of the wind.

Before I wrote this review I had:
- Burned-in for at least 250 hours
- Did not use any amplifier
- All my musics tested in this review is lossless

Musics Used:
While My Guitar Gently Weeps - Santana
The cello sounds ok, but the electric guitar low frequency sounds way better, when it comes to the drum bass, it give a very heavy and clear "thump". Female vocal is not really that impressive, and the drums symbol doesn't really shine well. When it comes to the guitar solo part, the notes is not that clear.

Hysteria - Muse
The starting part of the song some of the notes are mixed up on the electric guitar, When the male vocal comes in, I can't really determine the notes of the bass guitar. But the bass from the drum is detailed.

Rolling in The Deep - Adele
As usual, the bass is quite heavy, second layer vocal recording is quite clear, soundstaging wise, is really narrow.

As conclusion, this headphones doesn't really performed well in rock and vocal. Just for fun, I tried it with Tiesto tracks turns out it performs quite well, like the Ten Seconds Before Sunrise, it really brings out the energy of the music. I tried it with my Hippo Box+ Amplifier, apparently it does improve this headphones alot, the amplifier give it more clarity and improves the vocal and the highs of the musics. But if you want to find a headphones at this price, I would say you might want to consider the iGrado as well.

Saturday, August 6, 2011

Earn money from Facbook or Twitter



Last few months I came across this awesome site called says.my. It's a Malaysia social advertising company, it allows users of Facebook and Twitter to earn money from it.

Basically it's kinda easy to get involve in this program. First you need to sign up an account at says.my, either you can sign up manually or use your Facebook account to sign up.

Say, after you had logged into your account, all you need is to share some interesting topics provided there.
Notice in the picture above, each topic have a reserved amount for you and there is a earning per unique click, which means that each time after you shared to your twitter or Facebook, if your friend clicked it, you will get an amount of money that is stated there, but there is a reserved limit, so for each topic you will only get that certain amount of money. Don't worry though, because there are many new topics coming up everyday.

You will need to earn at least RM50 before you can cash out. Like as for mine it's already Rm62 which means I can proceed to cash out.

Who says you can't earn money online? :p signup here now.

Do visit the site for more information by clicking here. Happy onlining :)

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Hippo Box+ (Box Plus) Headphones Amplifier Review

Before this review, I had:
- Used this amplifier for more than 200 hours.
- Used the default interconnect
- All songs are ALAC format
- Paired up with Hippo Shroom EB
- Source is a PCM2704 USB DAC

Unfortunately there are no technical information about this amplifier yet.
This is my first review on an amplifier so do give me some correction if I state anything wrong here. :)

Retail price: RM300


Design
There are 3 colors available on the market if I'm not mistaken. Those 3 are silver, black and red. It is cased with a aluminum case and it feels very solid when you hold it in your hand, this is probably an improvement for the previous Hippo Box. If you all know, the previous Hippo Box Amplifier's input and output is on the same side, but in this Box+, the output is opposite of the input. I personally don't like the Box+ design, cause if you are going to put it in your pocket and your earphones' plug is not 'L' shaped, it might not suits well.

It charges with it's mini USB port which is quite standard on all portable amplifier. It has a gain and a bass switch. It's quite tricky, it only labelled bass and gain on the amplifier case, but it does not label which is high gain and which is low gain, and it's same goes to the bass.
Note: '=' is the switch

The diagram below shows low gain and low bass
[= ] [ =]
bass gain
And this diagram below shows high gain and high bass.
[ =] [= ]
bass gain

It can be quite confusing but after testing out, I'm sure you can figure it out. Besides, there are 2 light bulbs beside the mini USB port, the blue bulb indicates the power and the red indicates the charging status, when it's charging, the red light will lights up and will went off after it finishes charging. This box+ cames with a very big advantage, which is it does not have a power switch, it turns on when you plug in your earphone into the output and turns off when you unplug it. It's kind of disappointing because there are times where I don't like to disconnect my setup when I wanted to keep everything in my bag.

The Sound
I'd say it's awesome, it does pair up very well with almost all the headphones and earphones I had at my home, I had tried it on a Sennheiser HD202, Beyerdynamic DT440 and of course Hippo Shroom EB. But in this review, I will just stick to my Shroom EB. At first, I turned on the gain without the bass, it was impressive, the mids in Shroom EB improves alot, soundstage widen and it seems to make Shroom EB more musical. I used Muse Hysteria to test, the intro, all the micro details it shows up, usually the intro part I couldn't really determine every notes the guitar and bass player hit, but now everything seems to just shows up. Volume of course it does increase, I do not have the technical specification but it increases 3 levels in my macbook. As I change my track to Eagles - Hotel California Live Version, I can notice the hall is widen alot, some of the instrument placing is abit further but it does a very good job, I really can enjoy my musics with this amplifier.
Now, with the bass turned on as well. Shroom EB's bass improved abit, enough to bring the feel during rock and fast tempo musics but it does not make the bass feel muddy and surprisingly, it does not affect other frequency. I must say that this amplifier really did a great job to improve the sound signature of Shroom EB.

Recommendation
It's highly recommended you to try it before you buy because my review might not be 100% accurate and might not able to suit your music taste. Besides, try it with other better cable, while I paired it with my Shroom EB, I kinda prefer paired it up while using a pure copper interconnect, it reduces the brightness of the Shroom EB making the sound more relaxing.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Beyerdynamic DT440 review


Before I start this review, I had:
- burned-in for more than 500 hours
- iTunes -> PCM2704 USB DAC
- no amplifier used
- all test musics are ALAC format

Technical Information
- transmission type: Wired
- Headphone design: Open
- Impedance: 32ohms
- Frequency response: 5~35000Hz
- Nominal sound pressure level: 95db
- Cable & plug: Straight cable with 3.5mm and 6.5mm adapter
- Net weight without packaging: 350g

The Beyerdynamic DT440 headphones is one of their entrance level of their HiFi grade headphones. The price of this headphones is around RM560. There are many other headphones are around this price like the Audio Technica AD500, Alessandro MS1i and Grado SR60i (If i'm not wrong). But in this review, there are no comparisons done.

Design & Comfort
I personally liked the design of this DT440, the top of the headphones are made of rubber like material while the other place is made of plastics. From the look and hands on of it, it feels very solid but it's quite heavy. You are able to turn both of the cans 90 degree so you can keep it easily. When I wear it on my head, I don't feel comfortable at all, it's heavy the top padding of this headphones doesn't really helps at all, it keeps pressing on my head. The clamping of this headphones are tight too, I need to let it clamp on my handphone box for a few days so that it could loosen it, unfortunately my plan doesn't really works it does loosen abit the tightness but after a few days not clamping, it becomes tight back. So as for comfort I will grade it as 4/10 but design wise I will grade it as 6/10.

Sound Quality
I would say this pair of headphones is more to the dark side. Soundstage is not that wide, it does sounds accurate, every instrument are produced on this headphones are just right. Somehow the instruments of every songs are moved more to the front, leaving the vocal abit back. The bass produced from this headphones are tight, slightly punchy. The mids and highs are somewhat average. Clarity wise - average, which could be good and bad at the same time, some of the musics contains some recording errors, lower clarity headphones like DT440 could hide this errors but this could also hide some instruments that are playing at a very low volume. This pair od headphones are good for almost all genre of musics, but if you prefer vocal over instruments, this might not be a suitable headphones for you.

Overall, I think this is not a bad headphones for a price of RM560, so far I haven't pair it with any amplifier yet, but I believe with a decent amplifier, the soundstage could be improved.


Friday, April 15, 2011

Hippo Shroom EB Earphones Review




There is been a very long delay for this review to come out as there is some problems with the first Shroom EB that I got, luckily, Jaben Malaysia is willing to exchange one on one for me but that time there is limited stock with them, so I got to wait till recently, I exchanged and here is it, the review.

*Please be noted that before I start this review, I had:

  • Burn-ed in for at least 200 hours.
  • iTunes with PCM2704 USB DAC and Nokia 5800 as my source
  • No amplifier used in this review
For packaging information, you guys can read it from my first post of this earphones at Hippo Shroom EB Earphones First Impression.

Specifications:
  • Single dynamic driver, 6mm
  • Frequency range: 10Hz – 20KHz
  • Impedance: 16Ohm
  • Sensitivity: 95dB/mW
Retail price: RM190

Alright, lets go into the design. The build quality I will not rate it as very good, one of the reasons is their cable for left earplugs and right earplugs can be not even, the first one the right cable is longer than left cable by 2cm. While the current one the left is slightly longer than the right by few mm. It's actually not a big deal it does not affect the quality of the musics, but you guys can check the unit at Jaben Malaysia store before buying them. It's using the 'L' shaped 3.5mm gold plated plug, I'm sure you guys already know they advantages of using the 'L' shaped plug than the straight ones.

Comfort
This earphones had a special design. Normally earphones' driver are placed outside of our ears. but this Shroom EB, it actually place it's driver inside out canal, that will explain why this earphones had a slightly small driver compared to others. The comfort level of this earphones I would rate it as normal, there are friends of mine who tried and they complained that it will hurt their ears as the earphones end is quite big. But for me, it's ok.

Noise isolation
One of the reason people would buy an In Ear Monitor (IEM) earphones is because they are good in isolation outside noise. For this pair of earphones, it's not really good in isolating outside sounds, well, it also depends on your ear's shape. In LRT, I could still listen to the announcement, but it totally isolates other's speaking voice when the music is turned on.

Sound Quality
After it is taken out fromt he box, it sounds very harsh, highs are very sharp, I couldn't stand it so I just let it burn with white noise for around 10hours. After 10 hours, it became better, and after 200 hours, I got impressed with this IEM, so far it was the most affordable high clarity IEM I ever used. It brings out all the details from a music no matter what genre it is. It is a bit bias to the high side, so bass will not be so obvious, but to me it's okay. Soundstage wise, it's considered as average, not wide not narrow. When I'm listening to Hotel California Live by The Eagles, I feel like I'm infront of the stage this probably caused by the design of this IEM, the drivers are very near to your eardrums so it will bring the stage nearer to you. After the 200 hours burn in, the highs are perfect, the cymbals in the musics just so nice, the bass is tight and for those bass lover, as I just mentioned that this IEM had lower level of bass, this is not the kind of IEM bass lover will buy.

Improvement?
This Shroom EB does pairs very well with Hippo Box+ amplifier, the amplifier that Hippo just released, it will cost around RM300, but it does brings out the mids in Hippo Shroom EB perfectly and when you turned on the bass boost on the amplifier, it makes the Shroom EB sounds more fun.


Sunday, January 2, 2011

Hippo Ten Review

Got this baybeh last Tuesday, it's actually a replacement for my previous Shroom EB. Retail price of this baybeh is RM210.
Okay here we go, the specifications:
Single dynamic driver, 10mm
Frequency range: 20Hz – 23KHz
Impedance: 16Ohm
Sensitivity:110dB/mW



Build Quality and Design
Build quality was great, it uses the connector just like what Westone earphone used. Cable are great as well, the cables are covered with a semi-transparent rubber, plastic kind of material. Making it dangle free. It comes with a clip as well.
There is something that's irritate me abit, the design of the driver enclosure, it is somewhat a combination of IEM and the usual out ear earbuds. Somehow, this kind of design giving me abit of discomfort at first, but after awhile, I managed to find a suitable position to place it in my ears. The enclosure is made up of metal and plastic.


Sound Quality
Before reviewing, I had burn-in this earphones for 100 hours
Source: Macbook 2.0Ghz 5,1
Tracks are in Apple Lossless format
These are the songs I used for this review:


Santana - While My Guitar Gently Weeps

  • This earphones doesn't produce very punchy bass, when the Bass Drum comes in, it goes Bumm, instead of Dunn or Dumm
  • I was like :0 wow, when Santana's guitar comes in, it feels warm, but not as warm as those woodies.
  • This pair of earphones really performed very well for Santana's guitar in almost all of his tracks
  • Vocals are not harsh, quite sweet. Maybe because the vocalist is India Arie?
Santana - The Calling
  • I can feel that the soundstage was quite big and expansive just from the beginning and suddenly there was a people softly shout "wow". And that point, I got a shock and was like: Where it comes from? 
  • I could actually feel where is what and how far it is, for this song, the vocals and the instruments are almost at the same row. But the guitars are abit forward.
Nickelback - Gotta be Somebody
  • The cymbals doesn't stands out unlike the electric guitars. But it felts just right.
  • Separation was great, I could actually clearly count how many instruments are there and what are them.
  • Details are there but still not very clear
I had tried some trance, but they does not sounds really good on this pair of earphones like there is no power. But Jazz like Norah Jones's December could actually make you really relax and eventually feel like going to sleep. Overall, this earphones are more to mids and lows, great on soft rock and jazz. It does not mess up the instruments, outside sound isolation just average, when I'm in LRT, I still could listen to the alarm when the door is about to close. Well, there is actually nothing much to complain about it for this price.

For a RM210 earphones, this baybeh doesn't fails me.