The stars of this week’s Picture Sunday are FitEar’s TITAN, and Campfire Audio’s Vega. Unfortunately, I didn’t get the chance to flash my camera at Vega, so Titan is the only one to show its face. Check out other recent Picture Posts Here, and Here.
Yesterday kicked off Fujiya Avic’s Fall Headphone Show. I had time to visit three booths before being whisked away to cover an interview on Audeze’s new Sine earphones. (Am I the only one getting a 1978 Cylon Baystar feel from them?) The three booths I visited were: FitEar, Head-fi, and Campfire, in that order.
I got just a minute or two to spend with Vega, Campfire Audio’s latest, and hope to get a few more minutes today. The booth was packed. Typical for FitEar, there was a queue. FitEar sat me down behind a special Titan with a simple, but stiff rule set. Basically, you couldn’t listen to your own music. And you had to listen to the set through the balanced port of Sony’s new NW-WM1Z Walkman.
No skin off my neck.
After crowds had dispersed, I had the chance to plug in my Ryuzoh-modified AK100 mkii. (Hit up Ryuzoh’s website to get into contact.)
My notes on the set:
Clearest instrument separation I’ve heard from an earphone. In particular, percussion detail and texture, not to mention z-axis depth, were off the charts. Speed. Bam.
Y-axis height towers over you. Male vocal leading edges are strangely, if minorly occluded by the sheer amount of detail thrust through surrounding instrument detail.
Bar none, these are the most z-axis detailed earphones I’ve ever heard, and surpass even Campfire Audio’s Andromeda. Listening to them was like looking at a composite macro image for the first time, picking over myriad manufacturing defects and dust invisible to the naked eye. The problem I have is that, while I had fun listening to my music, I was listening way more to the earphone.
I had far less time to relax and listen at Campfire’s booth, so my Vega impressions are woefully short. My notes:
Bass is its most impressive feature. Vega reveals loads of z-axis texture detail, but mainly in the bass and low mids. If you’re into contra bass, violin, and drums, Vega is bound and determined to rock your boat. Its top end follows Lyra’s lead: sound pressure taking a slow dive toward the top end, reminiscent of first-run Sennheiser HD650s. It is rich and warm, and rocks crazily textured lows.
In general terms the two earphones couldn’t be more different. One is all about micro detail. One is about the whole scene. And yet, the sound stage cast by both is wide, round, and detailed along the z-axis. With just minutes’s listening under my belt, it is unfair to extrapolate, but I can imagine that Vega is the one I’d plug in when I want to enjoy my music whilst Titan is the one I’d plug in if I want to listen to my music.
Audio world, you’re a strange animal.