It’s hot new earphones time again! Well, it’s always hot new earphones time actually, but this time there are two incredibly famous and looked-after earphones: the Tin HiFi T4 and the oBravo Cupid Basic. The former is the heir to the Tin HiFi T3 launched earlier this ear, while the latter is the first budget-friendly product in oBravo’s line-up.
The Tin HiFi T4 take on the troublesome role of heirs to the highly praised T2 and T3. Probably due to this legacy, the company decided to up the ante and raise the price, but also increase the accessories and pay more attention to detail. Contrary to the T3, the T4 come with their own hard case. It’s similar to that included with the Tin HIiFi P1, but it’s definitely larger.
The earphones have the usual shape Tin HiFi has been using for all their dynamic driver products: a cylinder with a protrusion on one side, where the MMCX connector is placed. They’re shinier than the previous models, though, and more akin to the P1 in terms of finish. The faceplate is made to remind you of jet engines and they actually have some success with that.
The cable is what’s really different: it’s made of two large silver-plated cores, each with its own transparent plastic sleeve. It’s a departure from the past, but a welcome one: the cable is soft and malleable, plus it’s really comfortable. Alas it doesn’t have a chin slider.
As for sound, here’s a very early impression. The Tin T4 sport a single dynamic driver and seem to be more neutral than previous models. They seem not to have the distinctive bright tuning Tin products have had so far, they seem instead to have more bass while keeping treble extended and full. There’s still some emphasis in the upper midrange and lower treble region, but it’s not as pronounced as previous models.
Linsoul Audio provided the sample. A pre-sale activity is ongoing on their website. Price should be around $110.
The oBravo Cupid got a lot of attention recently, so much so that oBravo almost couldn’t keep up with production. In order to better meet demand, they made a cheaper version with a more basic cable, called the oBravo Cupid Basic. The earphones are exactly the same, what varies is the cable with related adapters. The one included is actually a nice cable, if a little flimsy-looking, with a fabric braiding that adds sturdiness and possibly durability. It’s surely different from the one seen at the London CanJam 2019.
The packaging is simple but effective. I do quite like how well organised and clearly laid out everything is. Taking the earphones out of the foam casing where they’re stored is a bit more complicated than necessary though, as there is no hole on the back. I had to take them out by disassembling the foam thingy. They told me that the packaging was changed though, so next units should be much easier to get out!
The earphones themselves are quite good-looking, with the shell made of metal and painted in what the company calls “black gold” – though I can see why, as the colour is a dark, brownish gold. The shape of the earpiece reminds me of the RHA T20i. I haven’t tried them for long, but they seem to be really comfortable and the sound appears well balanced, refined and with a very good amount of detail. Instrument separation also sticks out as especially good. The unusual pairing of a dynamic driver and a planar driver seems to work well.
Audio Concierge kindly provided a unit through their PR agency. They sell the Cupid Basic on their web store at £169.
I have a few reviews ready to go live about interesting products, plus a few products I will write reviews on in the coming weeks. Among them, the Moondrop KXXS, the Blon BL-03 and BL20 and the Thieaudio Phantom. Something really interesting is also coming soon, though I can’t tell you more than that currently!