JH Audio sent me a pair of custom in-ear monitors from their new Sirens line, the Roxanne. Roxanne retails for $1,599 (the “carbon fiber” option adds $500).
The Roxanne is an incredible work in miniature — there are 12 drivers per side! 119dB sensitivity means most head-amps will blow them out, but my Astell&Kern AK120 is just begging to play, so I think I’m all set.
I was sent the upgraded carbon-fiber model, which comes with an upscale carbon-fiber case and insert. Definitely not throwing that one out by mistake. I’m not entirely sure that the carbon-fiber option is anything but cosmetic, but even if it is just for good looks, well, that succeeded.
The sound, fresh out of the cold Fedex delivery box, was a little dark, with a lush and deep sound field. I’ve found that the high-end IEMs tends to come on-song after a bit of break-in, so I put it on repeat play and I left it there for a couple of days. Sure enough, the range seems to have opened up considerably.
One thing was clear, right from the start: this is a full-range IEM. Hello, bass! After some break-in, I found that the bass-boosted factory default (a +2 setting) was overbearing, so I dialed it back considerably. I’m still fiddling with this to find the “best” setting for my taste, but I think it’s probably closer to zero than +2. We’ll see. Happily, customizability is an option! That option comes courtesy of a pair of tiny dials embedded into a lozenge, near the 1/8th inch plug on the end of the headphone cable. Seeing the settings on that lozenge, however, required a jewelers loop. Of course, admitting that might have also just admitted how old I am, but whatever.
More on this lovely in-ear monitor soon. First impressions? Holy guacamole, Batman.