Thursday, May 5, 2016

Audiofly AF180 IEM Review

The AF180 is one of Audiofly's top of the line products, and it shows just as well. Having reviewed their products for a few years now, I at first was impressed with the sound of Audiofly's products. They always seem to give a big bang for the buck. But I soon came to learn that's the way these Aussie's roll. They like giving value to their customers. So when given the opportunity to see if the AF180 continues in the tradition, We naturally jumped on it!

Features and specs:
Passive crossover splits the audio signal and routes it to the appropriate driver
Quad drivers: 4 balanced armature drivers
Audioflex™ SL Cable: low profile for stage
Mouldable over-ear cable
Selection of high grade silicon and COMPLY™ Premium Earphone Tips
Driver configuration: Four balanced armature drivers with crossover 
Frequency range: 15-25kHz 
Sensitivity: 108dB at 1 kHz 
Impedance: 18 Ohms
Cable length: 1.6m / 64” 
Plug type: 3.5mm gold plated, right-angle format

The Audiofly AF180 came in a great looking printed box with photos and specs of the AF180. They came well protected. Materials used in the construction was mostly plastic, but quality of materials is very good, as is the fit and finish. I loved the sexy look of the stone blue housing. These are towards the top of the line for Audiofly, and it shows in the quality of the product. Audiofly may be fairly new to the headphone industry, but they were quick to establish them as a serious contender with quality products. Also included was a nice leather carry case, owners' manual, wax loop, and multiple sets of difference size and style eartips.

I was seeing things I was used to see from Audiofly.  The top of the cable is molded to help give a better fit around your ears.  The cables were high quality with cloth cover. And as stated before, the gloss stone blue of the housing was pretty sexy looking.  I couldn't wait to hear how they sound!

David Bowie: Let's Dance, the bass had good low end extension and played with authority. Percussion and cymbals were very crisp and clean and dynamic. Vocals had a lot of resolution and texture. Knocker sounded woody and threw a wide soundstage with great imaging. Journey: Don't Stop Believing, the keyboard sounded extremely natural, vocals were extremely smooth with tons of resolution to reveal lots of texture and timbre. I loved the harmonics, and lack of coloration. Percussion was crisp and clean with good depth in kick drum. Also Sprach Zarathustra, yielded nice low end extension that played with very good authority. Horns were smooth like honey with lots of resolution without being to brassy. Excellent resolution and dynamics in the tympani. Junior Wells: Why are People Like That, vocals were smooth and very detailed, bass guitar had excellent depth and authority as did the kick drum. Percussion was crisp and clean. Harmonica was extremely life like and detailed. Gershwin: Rhapsody in Blue, the clarinet was extremely detailed with good air, with so much resolution you could easily hear the breathing technique and woodiness. Piano had nice harmonics. The bassoon had excellent texture and depth. Soundstage was very big and imaging was spot on.

The Audiofly AF180 performed extremely well.  Using four balanced armature drivers, the resolution and detail they provided was closer than I expected to custom models I have reviewed in the past.  The highs were crisp and clean, mids were warm and smooth, and the bass played deep with lots of authority.  And the sound was overall very neutral.  I couldn't help getting lost in the music, going on to listen to more of my favorite tracks.  The sound was so good I got goosebumps!

IEM's at this price point are not for everyone.  But if you are one that takes your music seriously, the money spent on these will bring a smile from ear to ear. With it's quad balanced armature drivers, they had an overall neutral sound, and provided an aural bliss that must be heard to be believed.  And surprisingly the bass performance in depth and output was extremely good for a balanced armature.  Based on their design, features, quality, and performance, the Audiofly AF180 has earned our Editor's Choice Award.  For more info and complete specs, check out their website at