Finally, after about two weeks of use and burn-in, its time to review them. Iíll make this short and sweet, not too comprehensive, but just a guide to help those who have problems choosing.Background
I ordered these from Earpeace in late January, and they recently arrived mid-May. My colour choice was clear on clear, dual drivers (back then there was only dual drivers). It was indeed an excruciating wait of 4 months for me without a proper pair of earphones, and I had to make do with a pair of Klipsch Custom-1s. Finally, one day when I visited the forums on Jaben, they informed me that my Livewires were finally in! Overjoyed, I went down to collect it. Initial Impressions
The Livewires came with a different packaging than what I had expected. All they gave was a black case (similar to that of Freqs and Crossroads), together with a cleaning tool. Nothing else, no indication that this was of the product Livewires! Hmm.. a little weird here. The cables were white, and not the black cables which I expected. Build was acrylic and very firm, with some parts of the acrylic smothered out. Overall, it looked simple and sweet, exactly what I wanted.
I mainly listen to classical and jazz lossless, so here goes:Haydn Trumpet Concerto in Eb MajorPerformed by Y Symphony of New York
Composed in 1976, this piece marks a significant milestone in the history of classical music. Joseph Haydn, composed this piece for his long time friend Anton Weidinger, a trumpetist. Performed by the Y Symphony of New York, this piece is indeed an innovation on its own, one of the finest pieces by none other than Haydn himself.
Of course, what struck me first in this piece was the violins and violas. The strings section was clear and sharp, not striking but just enough to accompany the trumpets. Each and every note by the violins could be heard clearly and absolutely. The distinct tone of the trumpets was what struck me the most. As compared to my Soundsticks, the Soundsticks were no match for the Livewires. However, I felt that soundstage was lacking a little. Not too bad, but still could be improved. It felt as though I was sitting in a real concert hall, with excellent acoustics and intricate structures to maintain the quality of the music. An enriching experience.Waltz for Debby Gold CDPerformed by Bill Evans Trio
Bill Evans Trio was a famous jazz trio set in the 1960s. Waltz for Debby is one of the most treasured albums in his collection. Together with bassist Scott LaFaro and Paul Motian, they recorded their last few albums as a trio, before LaFaro was killed in an accident. This great jazz recording is internationally acclaimed, as one of the best well-composed jazz piece of all time. Time to put it to the test!
The EQ for this song originally set by the sound engineer was to have the bass and piano on different sides, as such the soundstage was fantastic, with the sweet melody entering my right ear, while the accompanying bass filling the left, with drums in the background. Bass was not too boomy, however, it leaned towards overpowering the melody and the drums. Clarity was almost perfect; every note was well articulated. Indeed, I do concur that this is one of the finest live jazz recordings, one that would inspire future jazz players and impress audiophiles.
There is a clear identification of where instruments are placed, or at least imaginable, when one takes a good listen. However, it does seem to lack for some songs, but soundstage on Livewires is adequate, just right. Overall: 4/5Bass
When out of the box, the bass seemed audible, but hardly accompanying the melody. Of course, I was disappointed, but I knew that there was a solution. After 200 hours of burn-in, it was fantastic, not too boomy, not inaudible, but just deliciously crisp. The texture and tonality of the bass, articulated from instruments made of the finest quality was certainly not to be missed. Overall: 5/5Mids
Mids werenít so clearly defined, or so I felt. The lack of the middle keys on instruments such as keyboard werenít striking enough. However, it does its job adequately, providing for the bass and highs to shine. Overall: 4.5/5 Highs
This is what the Livewires shine for. The trebles and highs produced by the drivers are excellent, just pure excellent. Overall: 5/5Conclusion
Coming from a triple.fi user, I believe that this is a huge improvement, not only in terms of isolation. For one who is looking at a cheap yet excellent in terms of quality and build, get your Livewires now! At a good deal of only US$249, this is not one to be missed. Finally, I can sleep on my side!