Several days ago we were closely examining Kinera Seed hybrid IEMs while trying to understand brand philosophy, their approach towards sound and input they make to this market. This was the first experience for us with Kinera which showed the maturity of their product and potentially one of the best market options to choose from. Their approach to design interations, invitations to aftersales engagement, careful adoption of the best fit, own R&D for drivers and final audio tuning differ much from many other brands playing on the same ground…
It wouldn’t be a confession to say that we would expect the next level of positive impressions from Kinera more expensive product like IDUN IEMs. Additional 90 bucks — that’s a lot for in-ear headphones taking into consideration all competitive advantages their cheaper model has to offer… So, let’s jump into the world of mid-budget hybrid IEMs in a sturggle to justify such additional expenses!
You can purchase Kinera IDUN in PenonAudio
Kinera IDUN technical specifications:
- Driver type: 2 balanced armature (Kinera) +1 dynamic (Kinera)
- Dynamic driver: 7mm dia., N50 magnet
- Sensitivity: 112 ± 2dB
- Impedance: 32ohm
- Frequency Response Range: 20 — 20000Hz
- Plug Type: 3,5mm, gold-plated, TRS jack
- Cable connection: 2-Pin, 0.78mm
- Shell options: transparent white / Abalone Turquoise
Kinera IDUN cable:
- Wire material: 8 core single crystal copper & silver-plated cable, mixed, twisted
- Plug material: 3.5mm, gold-plated, TRS jack / 2.5mm, gold-plated, balanced, TRRS jack
- Earphone interface: 2-Pin, 0.78mm
- Cable Length: 1.2M
We’ve got the full set of IDUN — IEMs with the corresponding cable. Hope that such pairing would disclose the full sound quality potential. By the way, this is not the most expensive cable in their current lineup — one that is dedicated for Odin model cost a fraction more but not proportionally higher if to compare the cost of IDUN V/S ODIN IEMs. Oh my god… Each audiophile is crazy to only certain extent and each has his personal extreme price limit…. We don’t even try to wonder how $799 ODIN IEMs should sound like… At least we can afford to buy its cable :))))
BTW: did you know that IDUN in Norse mythology is a goddess associated with apples and youth and ODIN is the god of wisdom, poetry, war, death, divination, and magic…? Interesting why Kinera has chosen Norse mythology as a source for product names…
According to this AFR graph we should have more or less evenly distributed gain across the entire range with slight emphasis on bass and treble portions. Our previous try with Kinera Seed showed more curved graph resulting to the corresponding final impressions that we’ve obtained during our tests… Therefore, judging upon this graph, we tend to believe that IDUN would demonstrate more monitor-like behavior.
Packaging and box contents:
Best packing we’ve ever seen. PERIOD.
Just look at this beautiful box — excellent in terms of design, printing quality, amount of details, shape and size. Very different to many boring options of other class rivals. Love it!
Box contents don’t disappoint either:
- IDUN IEMs
- 8 pairs of silicone eartips
- social pages invitation leaflet
- user manual
- aluminum storage case
Adding such aluminum storage case to the bundle was another surprise for us. Top and bottom parts of the case are covered with soft material from inside.
Very good accessory for storing and protecting IEMs from dust and accidental damage.
Design, materials and build quality:
Despite the fact that IDUN IEMs are fully made of plastic — they look gorgeous indeed. Our Abalone Turquoise version has blue transparent base with nacre top where color is shimmering from deep blue to shiny gold. Very hard to describe and even to recreate by the means of a single camera shot. Moreover, top side is covered by thick glossy plastic layer with Kinera brand logo inprint. Everything together creates a spectacular and eye-catching ensemble…
The build quality is so good that we couldn’t even identify separate shell parts if there are such. Looks as if shells are monolithic, molded as a single piece. Output nozzles are protruding directly from the base and do not have any detachable elements. The only openings in the shell are compensation and coupled sound output holes and base for cable pins.
IDUN cable is another piece of art — transparent earguides, black Y-splitter, cable retainer, gold-plated jack with black housing and Kinera logo. It is a mix of crystal and silver-plated copper, twisted throughout the whole length and with 2-Pin, 0.78mm connectors. Besides, despite the absence of left|right indicators it has red|blue pin base that correspond to right|left channels which is clearly stated in the manual. It is a pity that we couldn’t locate the same on the shell of IEMs… This is virtually the only point for improvement. Cable might come in two version — with 2.5mm balanced or 3.5mm standard plug.
IDUN makes a first impression of being large and heavy IEMs in comparison to Seed for instance. But this is only true until trying to wear it — the fit is so great that it is hard to tell which ones are currently in use.
IDUN remind us about some custom made IEMs with perfect fit that might stay almost insensible. Neither they aim to fall out if the appropriate eartips are chosen. Moreover, seems like the first IEMs that would find the best position inside the ears from the first attempt. Five stars here!!!
Sound quality test:
Testing equipment — Hidizs AP200 DAP, Hidizs AP80 DAP, Hidizs Sonata DH1000 DAC&
Lows and bass:
Deep bass has a good and precise outlines, good amount of details, fast decay and moderate presence. It is located slightly behind but still able to gently envelop the rest of the instruments. Definitely, we wouldn’t claim that IDUN sound bassy, instead they are a bit lacking deep bass amount but this is somewhere on the edge of personal perception and preferences.
Midbass articulation, speed and tightness are at sweet spot. Nothing to complain about here except for a little more sparkling sound peaks due to overall tendency to bright side of tonality. Amount of air seems to be enough to deliver proper expression for drums and layering is perfect to avoid the interference with other sounds. Maybe, larger diameter of dynamic driver or more shell cavity volume responsible for bass portion would provide some additional low notes and hit strength to drum sessions… but again — in case of IDUN this is more about personal perception and choice of eartips rather than tuning of IEMs.
Mids and vocals:
Everything from mids and up really shines here. Details and resolution are on very high level and could be a new benchmark for other IEMs. But not only that… Small recession of mids on the AFR graph is not affecting mids presence or position. We would say that mids are neither brought to front or placed back. Just right where they should be. Voices are clear, very natural, exuberate with details and perceived as a central part of composition. Despite hybrid IEMs nature — no lisping or sibilances are spotted.
Of course, the tonality of IDUN in mids obviously shows that balanced armature drivers are used due to enourmous amount of details and cool tonality coloring but this is inevitable and treated as strength of the corresponding technology.
If you want to astonish some newbe with BA or hybrid IEMs sound at its best — let him try Kinera IDUN and put something like Jean Michaelle Jarre — Oxigen II, III, IV on play. Overwhelming amount of resolution and details on treble and upper mids! In opposite to many other less experienced rivals in class — Kinera managed to tune treble so that excess of sharpness doesn’t evolve into unpleasant sparkles. Very crisp and sharp but on the other hand — perfectly controlled and gently served. We didn’t hear a single harsh or annoying peak, just enourmous amount of details and afterglows of each single sound. Finally, yes, we can say that treble tends to prevail a bit in the whole picture.
Stage and channel separation:
We’ve already mentioned very good layering of all the sounds and separation of instruments. Multiple drivers in gybrid IEMs and their crossovers would extend their ability to spread different frequencies and their desynchronization helps to achieve a good feel of channel separation. Therefore, scene becomes wide, instruments find their right place in the mix… Our beloved binaural recordings show large vertical and horizontal distance between instrument locations mostly typical for full-size headphones.
Sound in overall:
Kinera IDUN IEMs have very good monitor-like sound with even distribution of gain throughout the entire frequency range. Slight elevation is present at treble portion which adds bright and cool nature to the overall tonality. There is not apparent V-shape or other uneven peaks that makes these IEMs vitrually universal for any music genre or audio source. The strogest side is the capability to deliver very high resolution and amount of details, especially in mids and treble.
Compared to Magaosi K3HD:
Magaosi K3HD are bit less pricy and have only 1 BA driver in addition to 1 dynamic driver. Despite that K3HD compete on par with IDUN in terms of detail and resolution. Magaosi IEMs have more apparent V-shaped tinning, more pronounced deep bass and lows and a bit recessed vocals and mids. They sound a bit warmer and more suitable for slower music genres. Anyway, Kinera IDUN definitely win in terms of treble control, absence of sibilance, more gentle treble delivery and more even AFR characteristics.
Compared to EARNINE EN1J:
EARNINE EN1J are based on a single BA driver. Their sound is mids-oriented and tuned to leave out deep bass and treble. IDUN is a better performer in terms of clarity, brightness and resolution but might learn from EN1J how to incorporate the additional warmth and intimacy of mids while keeping reasonable amount of details compared to many dynamic driver rivals.
Kinera IDUN already became our favorite hybrid IEMs. Equal gain across AFR and astinishing detail resolution with perfect control in delivery make them a new benchmark for other competitors. Adding here their perfect packing, pleasing design and attaractive finish — what other characteristics of the best product you can think of? Finally, we’ve proven ourselves that IEMs in a higher price segment do bring obvious advatages that are worthy to pay for… Anyway, we are about to open the whole new world of tiny details in our beloved audio compositions, thanks to Kinera IDUN abilities… Wishing you the same!
You can purchase Kinera IDUN in PenonAudio