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Massdrop Plus Universal IEMs
Massdrop Plus Universal IEMs
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I've had these IEMs for a few months now and I'm glad that I've held off on the review till now as I've had a chance to try different tips, try an IEMatch and burn in the headphones.
At first when I received the MD+ I was not impressed. I quickly realized that I absolutely needed an IEMatch to lower the output impedance of my amp (Aune X1S 10th Anniversary Edition) to match with the 10ohm IEMs. This helped significantly and removed most of the boominess of the bass.
Unfortunately the headphones were very uncomfortable with the stock tips. I have small ear canals, so I tried using the small single and dual flange tips supplied with the IEMs. Both of them felt uncomfortable and didn't allow the insertion I needed. I tried the small foam tips and while they were much more comfortable, the sound seemed more boomy and the mids/highs were kind of grainy and sibilant. I was not a fan.
The next thing I did was buy some medium comply foam tips. They were much more comfortable, though they wouldn't allow deep insertion and the IEMs ended up sticking out of my ears too much, to the point that the IEM bodies were pushing uncomfortably into them. This was not suitable for long-term use, and at this point, I couldn't understand why almost everyone considered these extremely comfortable. I just wasn't seeing it.
By this time, I was pretty unsatisfied with these headphones. At the same time, the sound was clearly opening up due to what I assume is better burn-in of the drivers. Mids and highs were sweeter, less sibilant and more crisp on the high end. Unfortunately they were still uncomfortable and I would get hot spots on my ears after an hour of use. I also didn't like the fact that every time I took them out, I needed to roll the tips between my fingers to reinsert. I was very close to just throwing in the towel and selling the IEMs.
I'm glad I didn't. In a last ditch effort, I bought some medium and small spinfit tips. The smalls were too small, and barely sealed at all. That said, when I did get them to barely seal, the sound was very, very good. They also allowed the deeper insertion that I needed and suddenly the IEMS sat flush with my ears, and were much, much more comfortable to the point that I could wear them for hours without issues.
Finally I tried the medium spinfit tips and now I've come all the way around to the point that I'm very impressed with these IEMs.
The sound is fun, engaging, punchy and pretty sweet at the upper end. The mids are pretty lovely with good texture and very little harshness. The bass is only slightly boomy, but the texture is much better than it was before burn-in and the IEMatch cable. It extends deep down and is great for electronic music. Overall the detail is very nice, and much, much better then it was out of the box. Soundstage is decent, and while not particularly wide or deep, it's there, and the instrument separation is reasonably good as well.
I'm not a huge fan of the cable that comes with the IEMs. It's rather short, slightly sticky, and slightly microphonic. The cables also come unplugged from the IEMs with little force.
I'm giving these IEMs a 4/5 (probably 8.5/10) because the cable isn't great and the supplied tips are pretty bad (for me at least). Other than that these are excellent IEMs and now that I have them figured out, I'm very happy with them.
If they stick out of your ears with Comply tips, you need a smaller size.
If I wanted to stick with the Comply tips I would, but I prefer the ease of use that comes with the spinfits.
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