EARNINE is most known for its previous product EN2J with two balanced armature drivers design and which has got lots of warm mentions by different audiophile geeks and reviewers. We didn’t have a chance to try those out and starting our journey with this brand from their mid-budget offering — EN1J. Those are based on more expensive precedessor with logical and inevitable simplifications in terms of technical design and materials used. Anyway, this doesn’t mean a simple degradation of sound. In fact, EN1J got its own well-developed sound signature and would stand on par with their rivals in class.
You can purchase EARNINE EN1J at PenonAudio store
EARNINE EN1J (TE100BB) technical specifications:
- Driver type: 1 x balanced armature
- Sensitivity: 104dB ± 3dB at 1KHz
- Frequency range: 20Hz to 20KHz
- Impedance: 38Ω ± 20% at 1KHz
- Max. input: 10mW
- Cable: twisted, 1.2m
- Plug: 3.5mm, 24K gold-plated, L-shaped
Additional information quoted from PenonAudio store:
- Adopt own developed full arrange balanced armature driver
Succeeded in development by repeatedly failing and challenging for about two years by the in-house development team. Full range BA is a basic model of EARNiNE that covers broadband.
- Adopt twisted cable
Although it is a basic model, it is very important to prevent touch noise firmly and it was possible to minimize it by adopting a twisted cable.
- Noise isolation design
By design that fits the structure of the ear, I was able to concentrate more on music than suppressing noise from the outside.
Having signle balanced armature driver usually leads to compromizing on a frequency range unless there were additional efforts made about the driver itself or special chambers to compensate the possible shortcomings. Jumping ahead we would say that EN1J are subject to focus on certain range more than the other but still exhibit good sound picture in overall.
Packaging and box contents:
Our usual statement about the large box for IEMs of this size is that it is a nightmare for logistics and good initial impressions for the owner. Box is big with good glossy picture of the product, gold brand name and item name inprints and lots of technical data.
Good to have this exploded diagram on the back — creates a feel that EN1J belong to the professional field. Besides, the box tells us that this product is made in South Korea which is kind of rare nowadays.
Box contents are regular:
- EN1J IEMs
- Carrying and protective case
- 3 pairs of silicone eartips (S|M|L)
- 1 pair of foam eartips (M-size)
- user manual
- warranty card
We would be very disappointed in case if the carrying case would not have been included into the package with $105 price…
Build quality and materials:
EN1J IEMs is fully made of plastic. The only aluminum elements are non removable nozzle covers (grills). Despite that the build quality is excellent.
Those are small IEMs with low profile, perfect parts alignment and neat brand logo inprints. Cable is a bit hard to bend which would lead to more touching noise but incorporates well-developed ear guides and bending protection at both ends. 3.5mm L-shaped connector housing is also made of plastic. In overall, the choice of materials is ok here, especially if to forget about the wide choice of much cheaper models from other brands that are made of CNC-aluminum and have lots of design findings… the reason not to complain much here is that the choice of materials would also influence audio quality. If EARNINE had chosen plastic as the most appropriate material and could deliver good sound — we can live with that.
One of the best part about this product is the fit: small size, perfect profile, variety of eartips, low weight and subjectively thin nozzles dedicate much to long lasting wearing comfort together with excellent outer noise isolation. One of the best IEMs in this regard so far. Spent at least half of the day with EN1J on and had no signs of pain or a will to get rid of it.
Our testing equipment: Hidizs AP200 DAP, Hidizs AP80 DAP
First listening session might end up with the initial impression that deep bass and lows are almost absent. Giving some more time for ears to adopt and lows become more apparent especially in mid and upper bass regions. Don’t expect too much of details here due to the lower presence but the shape and speed is on the appropriate level. Some compositions would surely lack the dynamics and «tight» feel in midbass resulting into more affiliation to a specific genres and creating less stress for the ears as the positive outcome.
Mids and vocals:
EN1J is the product for mids. This range has the best resolution, highest presence, the most natural sound and good articulation. It stands in front of other ranges and delivers the most of details. Moreover, EARNINE has achieved very important goal — to create a feel of gentle sound at the most emphasized one and throughout the entire frequency range. There is no excessive crispness or other disturbing overly bright sound properties that would make you feel tired. Same goes to the vocals — intimate, gentle and natural vocals that stand out of the entire scene and allow all other instruments to take their sweet spots at the background.
Never though that balanced armature could be tuned to emhasize mids more than the treble. It definitely hangs a little bit behind the mids here. The most curious part is that despite more than average texturing and detailing — treble is not that crisp as seen in other armature IEMs and feels a bit muted. This helps to eliminate all possible hisses and sibilances — those are totally absent. Seems that EARNINE has chosen the approach to deliver treble very carefully and to keep it far away from overpowering. In overall, treble is well balanced with mids and totally enough for most of the genres, just the previous experience with BA commands us that there should be some more…
Channel separation and stage:
More than average. As mids play the central role here — vocals are brought to front, there is a feel of standing close to a singer. The rest of the instruments are located slightly deeper on stage with good separation from each other. There is no mess in the mix, all instruments are well shaped and have a good contouring. Monaural recordings exhibit distant horizontal and vertical placement with their precise locations.
Overall sound picture:
EARNINE EN1J could be desribed as mids-oriented, neutral and natural IEMs with a tendency to a bright side and lack of deep bass region. These are neither too crisp and too bright as many other BA IEMs, thus, free of such shortcomings as excessive noise, hisses and sibilances. The best experience would be using EN1J with dark or neutral sound source for genres like rock, jazz, blues, soul, etc. Finally, the best characteristics of sound is the feel of gentleness — neutrality multiplied by accurate tuning and keeping away from any peaks.
Compared to MaGaosi K3HD:
MaGaosi K3HD are hybrid type IEMs with the similar pricing. They have clear advantages / disadvatnages in direct comparison to EARNINE EN1J. Advantages are the materials used (CNC-aluminum), detachable filters and cable, better low bass and more detailed sound in overall. Disadvatnages are: more prone to sibilance and hisses on treble, more irritating sound during long sessions due to excessive amount of details, less comfortable fit.
We would say that MaGaosi K3HD is the best choice for energetic listening sessions and EARNINE EN1J is for getting some rest and meditation
We definitely like EARNINE EN1J product and respect manufacturer’s approach towards tuning. Those IEMs might be used as precise monitors by mids-oriented musicians or by vocalists. For home use those would be perfect to relax with slow music or to rediscover new details in many favorite songs. Excellent fit and very good noise isolation would also help a lot to get the maximum of each audio composition!
You can purchase EARNINE EN1J at PenonAudio store