I adore German sound mastering.
Last time I fully enjoyed the InEar StageDiver SD-5 earphones, but our musical Oktoberfest does not end there, and the next one up is the flagship model of in-channel monitors from InEar is ProPhile 8.
Text by Alexey Kashirsky aka Hans Barbarossa
We thank InEar company for providing the sample for listening.
* 8 BA driver per side
* 4-way system
* 2 switches to adjust sound signature
low frequencies by +3dB
high frequencies by +2dB (starting at 8 kHz)
* Transmission range: approx. 10 Hz–20000 Hz
* Output sound pressure: 120 dB (SPL / 1mW@1 KHz)
* Impedance: 34 ohms @1 KHz
* Cable length: 140 cm / (4´7.5´´)
ProPhile-8 earphone - 1 pair
Detachable 2-pin stock cable - 1 piece
Silicone ear tips (sizes XS, S, M and L) - 1 pair per size
Comply TS400 foam tips (sizes S, M and L) - 1 pair per size
Gold-plated 6,3/3,5 mm adapter - 1 piece
Cleaning cloths - 3 pieces
InEar hard case IE13 - 1 piece
Cerumen filter set H3
Appearance, kit and ergonomics
As in the case of StageDiverSD-5, ProPhile 8 came to me as an OEM product, in a large reliable plastic "PELI CASE" in black with a branded sticker. Inside there were the IEM with a nice black cable, cleaning cloths for iem care, 3.5 / 6.3 mm jack adapter, four pairs of ergonomic silicone ear tips of different sizes, several pairs of Comply foam tips, a dehumidifying tablet and a tool for cleaning the sound pipe, which can also be used for flipping the LF/HF switch, located on the inside of the IEMs.
The case of PP8 is made of matt black plastic with a pleasant to the touch finish. The build quality and appearance are beyond all praise, and it's hard to believe it is not a shell, custom made on an individual ear mold.
Replaceable filters installed in sound ducts serve to protect against moisture and ear wax. The cable is similar to what we saw in the SD-5: braided, 2pin plug, L-shaped 3.5mm jack, with a rigid earholder. Let’s say - pretty good cable, but after having played with my own collection of alternatives, I set my heart on HanSound RedCore. The sound of PP8 in this case became more neutral and crisp, the stereo panning and sound resolution improved. Better soundscape. All in all, the perfect pair!
On the inside of the PP8 are two toggle switches responsible for increasing the low (+ 3dB) and high (+2 dB) frequencies and having two positions: up / down. Thus, we have four variations of the possible final sound. Switches allow you to fine-tune and accurately change your sonic preferences. And this is an extremely precise fine-tuning, I must tell you, really like it!
And it’s time to listen to the music now!
Listening was conducted on MyST DAC 1866OCU V.2, QLS DA9.1 Melokin, iBasso DX200, Lotoo PAW Gold and iFi micro iDSD Black Label.
With all the devices used for playback the PP8 performed at the highest level with some light variations, depending on the source, giving PP8 its unique individual tone.
The PP8 performs very well in all condition / with all genres of music. What impressed me most when testing the PP8 was comparing the delivery while having toggle switches off and then on. Having switches on adds some extra colour and character to already superb sound.
The sound of ProPhile 8 is smooth, steady, clear, very musical, with excellent working out of micro- and macro nuances, good speed and striking neutrality.
They represent a rather spacious and extremely detailed picture with an almost ideal drawing of the width and depth of the virtual space. Precise sound timbre reproduction, coupled with transparent feed and maximum neutrality, strike your ear from the very first notes, arranging a real sounding extravaganza, plunging the listener into the world of beautiful harmonies.
Neutral pitch, clarity, excellent speed characteristics - all this creates an exceptional fullness of audio images and completely dissolves you in the music flowing from ProPhile 8. The picture is drawn in a contrast and clarity, where every stroke, every image is spread out before you.
Bryan Ferry "Girl of my best friend"
The composition is delivered smoothly, steady, melodiously and to the marvelous detail. Every sigh, every reverberation, every echo, every pinch - sound clear and articulate.
Bass accurate, neutral, without the slightest hint of hum, delicately gives out the rhythmic foundation of the song. He, like the evening breeze, which blows from the sea to the sun-warmed coast, brings freshness to the melodic middle.
The guitars sing sweetly with their melodious busts, which glisten like a glint in the tranquil watery surface. The vocal of maestro Ferry is velvety, calm, lively and very natural, without a hint of falsehood, in the very center insinuatingly broadcasts:
« No I can't help it I'm love
With the girl of my best friend..»
Stunning transfer of the atmosphere of the composition. The whole miracle is both musical and natural!
Rod Stewart "Da Ya Think I'm Sexy?"
The stylistics of music of the late 70's can not be convincingly transmitted.
This thing in the bundle ProPhile 8 + iFi micro iDSD sounds exactly as I remember it from my vinyl record "Blondes Have More Fun".
The bass is fast, clear, going level with the whole frequency range. Guitar parts, melodiously pounding on both sides, fill the general background of the composition. The main melody twists, stepping forward, turning the whole action into a sparkling whirlpool.
Plates and hi-hat cool and sharply inject their spark, scattering around the "glam" sparkles. And dude Rod Stewart - here he is, as in the palm of your hand, in front of me - with his sexual hoarseness, a little more creaky and so heartfeltly reveals:
"If you want my body and you think I'm sexy
Come on sugar If you really need me just reach out and touch me
Come on honey tell me so
Tell me so baby ... "
We click the switch of low frequencies, we do not touch the high frequency - we get even more drive and musicianship!
Oh yeah! This is ProPhile 8, baby! Here it is a real sound, here it is a buzz!
«In the dry residue let me know»
Low frequencies - with good bit and precise impact, neutral, fast and extraordinarily harmonious bass.
Medium frequencies are detailed, smooth, incredibly musical, with good resolution and texture transfer.
High frequencies are fast, clear, accurate, slightly cool and natural. In them there is not the slightest hint of friability or distortion. Everything is as honest and natural as possible.
Amazingly balanced earphones. That's what I understand - competent sound settings! In my opinion, this is one of the best models among the in-channel IEM, at least, from what I've heard.
Well, now about the material side of things. On the website inear-monitoring.eu ProPhile 8 costs 1 298 €. At first glance, an impressive price, but against the background of the prices of competitors is more than acceptable. As for me, the IEMs of this money are definitely worth it. For such a sound - do not mind!
Exceptional sound, convenience, build-up quality and materials.
None, providing you have got an irresistible craving for climb the audiophile peaks despite the financial obstacle.