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64 Audio tia Trió IEM Review

Rate this IEM:

  • 1. Poor (headless panther)

    Votes: 115 58.7%
  • 2. Not terrible (postman panther)

    Votes: 50 25.5%
  • 3. Fine (happy panther)

    Votes: 22 11.2%
  • 4. Great (golfing panther)

    Votes: 9 4.6%

  • Total voters
    196

amirm

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This is a review, listening tests, and detailed measurements of the 64 Audio tia Trió IEM. It was kindly drop shipped to me and costs US $2,299.
64 Audio tia Trió IEM Review.jpg

I was not a fan of included cord. It feels sticky even though it isn't. And is rather thick and has memory. Here are the included pads:

64 Audio tia Trió IEM silicone pads Review.jpg

I always use the middle size silicon tips for measurements which worked out great in this case. The seal was excellent and gave proper results on first try.

This is a 3-driver design with passive crossover.

Note: The measurements you are about to see are made using a standardized Gras 45C. Headphone measurements by definition are approximate and variable so don't be surprised if other measurements even if performed with the same fixtures as mine, differ in end results. Protocols vary such as headband pressure and averaging (which I don't do). As you will see, I confirm the approximate accuracy of the measurements using Equalization and listening tests. Ultimately headphone measurements are less exact than speakers mostly in bass and above a few kilohertz so keep that in mind as you read these tests. If you think you have an exact idea of a headphone performance, you are likely wrong!

64 Audio tia Trió Measurements

As usual, we start with our frequency response measurement:
64 Audio tia Trió Frequency Response Measurements.png


I was very naturally pleased to see the excellent bass response and compliance with our target up to about 2.5 kHz. Past that we see a droop and some irregularities. I don't usually put much value beyond 10 kHz but seems like we have a boost there.

Compared to our target, we get the following deviation which is not bad:
64 Audio tia Trió Relative Frequency Response Measurements.png


What is bad (objective) is quite high distortion in treble region:
64 Audio tia Trió relative THD distortion Measurements.png

64 Audio tia Trió THD distortion Measurements.png


Fortunately the amount of energy in music is quite low there so you can rely on 94 dBSPL results which is reasonable.

Group delay is not very revealing with IEMs and such is the case here:
64 Audio tia Trió Group Delay Measurements.png


Impedance is very low and variable:
64 Audio tia Trió Impedance Measurements.png


Fortunately this is a very sensitive IEM so just about any device should be able to drive it:

Most sensitive IEM Review 2023.png


64 Audio tia Trió IEM Listening Tests
As noted in the intro, I started with the largest silicon tips and was quite taken back by how bright the sound was! The bass that showed up in measurements were nowhere to be found. That is when I noticed there was no isolation of outside noise (the faint fan noise from my PC was just as evident). I put some pressure on the drivers and that gave me some bass but not enough. And certainly not consistently so. The rubber tips seem to be bigger so I tried the largest one there. That got me half-way there. I got the rest by shoving them all the way inside my ear canal to the point where I could feel them against my inner ear -- a sensation I did not like. But for testing, I tolerated it. Now there was good bass response and the brightness was all but gone. It was replaced however with rather dull highs. So I started to EQ to correct the highs:
64 Audio tia Trió Equalization EQ IEM Parametric Roon Player.png


This opened up the highs nicely including some air and separation in instruments. Even though my hearing sensitivity is not great in the last octave, I could hear the improvement in the sharp notch filter at 14 kHz so left it there.

With all these fixes, the sound was good.

Conclusions
I was yet again pleased that 64 audio pays attention to bass response as I had noticed in my review of their U12t IEM. While objectively this response was there, as I explained subjectively, it was totally absent for me. Whether you fall in the same bucket as me, is hard to say. If you do, you are going to have a pretty lousy experience. If you can use the other tips to get the bass back, you still need EQ because the highs will now become deficient without it. With the combination of proper tips and EQ, you get good sound, as is the case with many headphones and IEMs.

Level of distortion is disappointing in such an expensive piece of audio equipment. While this seems endemic in balanced armature drivers, I have tested others at a fraction of price with less of it.

Because I can't get good sound out of these IEMs in my listening tests, I can't recommend the 64 Audio tia Trió. It pains me to say this as the company is just a few hours from me! Hopefully the work on improving their compliance to research targets. And figure out why the fit is not as broad as it should be.

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As always, questions, comments, recommendations, etc. are welcome.

Any donations are much appreciated using: https://www.audiosciencereview.com/forum/index.php?threads/how-to-support-audio-science-review.8150/
 

Attachments

  • 64 Audio tia Trió Frequency Response Measurements.zip
    27 KB · Views: 83
Color me unimpressed with these.
 
The silicone tips seal better in the silicone ear of the test rig better than a real ear?

I'm not the market for these, and cannot stand in ear anything, but I appreciate the review, @amirm.
 
The silicone tips seal better in the silicone ear of the test rig better than a real ear?
In this case, yes. With some other IEMs, I have had to wear the foam ones to get proper seal. Every ear is different so hard to generalize.
 
For that price I expect exceptionally low distortion across the board that facilitates Eq/PEQ across all frequencies. Not this distortion generator effect at 1.5 to 6 KHz. This is a major failure. Wow, do we have a Panther looking at a floating turd in the bathtub? Need to hire him. :facepalm:
 
Some try to argue that value is entirely subjective when it comes to audio devices, especially speakers/headphones/IEMs because "everyone has different values."

Horse....feathers.

As an engineer, knowing that the TxCZ objectively blows this thing out of the water for 1/46th the cost, I've no option other than to give it the worst possible rating.
 
I do like a recession vs Harman-IE above 3kHz. To me it gives vocals a moderate presence, and a distinctly frontal localization.

However, the distorsion performance of this 64 Audio product is abysmal. When sub-$50 sets beat a TOTL product I'm calling shenanigans.

1677377066131.png
 
Well, expensive, super low impedance that might cause some HPA to misbehave, high distortion in a critical area for instruments and voices (where most less expensive competitors do well)…there is not much to like…

Thank you Amir for this review! A pass for me.
 
It is interesting to compare Amir's results with Crinacle's:


1677379472533.png


As always with IEM's, variables such as test rig, insertion depth, quality of seal, and so on will affect the results.

I have tried these IEM's (but did not buy). Obviously my head and the quality of the seal around my ear is quite different to Amir's, but I found that I did not have to push them all the way in to get a proper seal with the provided large eartips and to me they sounded fine. The real benefit was the high sensitivity which meant that they can be driven by almost anything.

Sadly I could not find any distortion measurements (maybe I did not know where to look) to corroborate Amir's findings.
 
Fit is a continual challenge with IEMs.

Custom moulds for IEMs are a must for any performing musician because they always fall out or cause pain.
 
I know it seems strange, but this level of distortion is normal for Balanced Armature standards. Almost all BA drivers spec'd for THD up to around 7%. There's also the issue that we still can't pick out how technicalities are determined in IEM's using the current measurements. Target curves aren't really hard for manufactures to meet, but a lot of them have their own research their own targets, 64 Audio IEM's are kinda well known for having a wide soundstage which is very uncommon among IEM's because they're lodged in the ear canal. While IEM's like Truthear Zero can be found for $50 they do lack the technical factors in detail retrieval and staging/imaging. There is still a pretty big discrepancy in technicalities from a lot of cheaper IEM's and the "decent" expensive IEMs. I'd like to see more measurement details analyzed like CSD & Impulse response as well. Crinacle said it best you don't pay for tonal & frequency response.
 
It is interesting to compare Amir's results with Crinacle's:


1677379472533.png
Why hasn't he aligned the measurement at a low frequency with target? Standard is around 500 Hz (I use 425) He has is lined up at 2 kHz which doesn't make sense as that point can be highly variable. If he did align it at 500 Hz, then it would look very close to mine. Bass would come down and show the same deficiency as I do.
 
While IEM's like Truthear Zero can be found for $50 they do lack the technical factors in detail retrieval and staging/imaging.
I performed AB tests between the two and did not at all detect such a difference. What I heard was that the Zero sounded so much better without EQ. And was more resolving, cleaner to boot. The zero has much lower distortion which may explain, together with proper balance, why it sounds better.
 
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