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FiiO F9 review: Premium build, fair price

THE ASIAN AGE.
Published : Apr 6, 2018, 6:05 pm IST
Updated : Apr 6, 2018, 6:06 pm IST

China's FiiO F9 headphones are known to be triple driver hybrid IEMs and promise to deliver a notable audio experience.

The  FiiO F9 has triple-drivers comprising of a single 9.2mm dynamic driver along with two balanced armature drivers in each earpiece.
 The FiiO F9 has triple-drivers comprising of a single 9.2mm dynamic driver along with two balanced armature drivers in each earpiece.
Rating:

In the present, the demand for wireless earphones is avid, as they bring the advantage of moving around with the music you love without worrying about tangled wires. However, even the most popular ones in the market (take Apple's AirPods for example) are not able enough to carry that grace like their wired counterparts. And, with the technology becoming cheaper, even the budget ones have started offering good value with several premium features, one of them being the inclusion of triple drivers. China’s FiiO has a pair of headphones to offer with three built-in drivers — the F9 — which promises to deliver a notable audio experience, and priced at Rs 7,990.

FiiO F9

Build, Design:

The FiiO F9 headphones showcase an ergonomic design and are visually appealing too. Both earbuds are housed in CNC aluminium enclosures with a ripple design, giving it a unique look. The earbuds are smooth to the touch – thanks to a sandblasted anodized finish. The earphones have an added advantage of the around-the-ear design, which helps in ensuring a secured fit on the ears while being on the move or hitting the gym.

FiiO F9

The F9 earbuds support MMCX connectors and hence they come with two replaceable 1.2-metre cables out-of-the-box — one is a 2.5mm braided cable and the other with a 3.5mm standard cable with inline controls on this one. Both cables carry the around-the-ear designs.

FiiO F9

However, do note that the over-the-ear wired design takes time to get used to and the cable has a tendency to get tangled very easily. Interestingly, the earphones come in a sturdy protective case (designed like a steel suitcase) with a strong plastic build and make it easy to carry it around. Sadly the case is not pocketable. Along with the earphones, the company also provides two sets of ear tips for user preference.

FiiO F9

FiiO F9

Specifications:

As mentioned earlier, the F9 has triple-drivers comprising of a single 9.2mm dynamic driver along with two balanced armature drivers in each earpiece. The company claims that the 9.2mm dynamic driver is specifically tuned to produce bottomless lows and the other two balanced armature drivers for upper mids and highs. The frequency response of the headphones is 15Hz-40kHz, sensitivity 106dB and the impedance is 28 Ohms.

FiiO F9

FiiO F9

Performance:

The earphones with their around-the-ear design are tricky to adopt initially, but the ergonomic design gets habituated to the earlobes. The earbuds are also detachable from the cable; however, they are pretty tricky to unplug. While this may pose issues in changing to the 2.5mm cable or vice versa, it ensures that a sudden jerk won't lead to misplacement of the same. The inline control hosts three-buttons for audio play/pause, skipping tracks, taking calls (has a built-in microphone) and standard volume controls. The buttons are pretty tactile and can be differentiated easily — thanks to the curved design. 

FiiO F9

FiiO F9

The FiiO F9 headphones sound remarkably good. They have a well-balanced and clear audio quality — thanks to the triple drivers, you can distinguish between instruments in the audio tracks. As claimed, the balanced drivers help the earphones give a superior audio quality for the mids and highs. The headphones feature a V-shaped audio technology, which emphasizes on bass and treble, and focuses on the major frequencies to make it highly audible. The bass is substantial and well-behaved; however, the treble seems to dominate on the bass more often. There is a considerable amount of bass, but it all depends on the track. Overall, the audio performance is well above average and with the combination of wearing comfort and audio performance, you will definitely be listening to more music during the day.

FiiO F9

Verdict:

If you are hunting for some good performing headphones that deliver a reasonable amount of bass fused into an overall balanced audio spectrum, then the FiiO F9 with triple drivers will certainly interest you. It’s well-built and provides a secure and comfortable fit. The earphones may seem priced a bit high, but they definitely justify the price once you listen to them.

Tags: fiio, fiio f9, f9, headphones, earphones