Review: Fidue A63

Firstly I would like to thank Fidue for sending me this sample for review, it is one of two products released by Fidue so far. These received well over 50hrs of burn-in before review, I will write as honest a review possible.

Gear Used:
iPod Classic 160gb (rockboxed) > Fidue A63 (bi flange tips)
Fiio X3 > Silver interconnect > JDS Labs C5D > Fidue A63 (bi flange tips)


Specs:
Driver:       Φ8 mm Driver with Titanium Composites
Frequency Range: 20-20,000 Hz
Impedance:    16Ω
Sensitivity:       105dB
Distortion:        <1%
Plug:         3.5mm mini stereo, gold-plated
Cable:           1.2 m
Accessories:    Ear cushions (L / M / S size)
MSRP:                   $55

Packaging, Accessories and Build Quality:
Packaging is very well done, all very neatly presented in a high quality card box. There is an outer sleeve with the model number and specifications listed on it, take the sleeve off and you have a very good looking box which has a magnetic flap which opens to reveal the headphones very securely held in foam.

Under this foam you will find the included accessories which are a soft carry pouch and various tips (S, M and L in single flange, S and M bi flanges). I refer hard clamshell cases, but the case included is really good and I don't fine the A63 package on the whole missing anything, unless you enjoy using a cable clip.


Build quality is on the well built side, with a metal housing that is very light and the finish is great, the cable is similar to Hisound's offering, with a shiny coating over twisted wires, I really like this kind of cable as it is soft and flexible yet strong and should hold up fine over time. The y-split and jack both have texted metal barrels, the y-split with Fidue written in white, and the jack, y-split and housing all have excellent strain relief which is flexible but not flimsy.

Comfort, Isolation, Driver flex and Cable noise:
I recently read that Joker didn't find these comfortable and that the metal edges were sharp and caused discomfort. I disagree partly, yes the housing is not the smoothest or most round, but I do not find any discomfort even when inserted fairly deep with the bi-flanges. So your mileage may vary, but I personally found these to be very comfortable and the housing is light and the cable is soft and easy to manage, I wore these mainly with the cable over the ear to eliminate any cable noise.

Isolation is fairly standard for a vented IEM, not blocking out moderately loud sounds, but enough for most daily activities.

Driver flex is not a problem with these IEM's.

Cable noise is present if you wear the straight down, but when worn over the ear no such problems arise.


Sound:
Split in to the usual categories with a conclusion at the end.

Lows: Full bodied and articulate are what first come to mind, they have great extension and yet have good control never congesting or making them sound bloated. Yes there is a tiny bit of bleed in to the mids, which just gives them a little extra body, but it is not very noticeable. The mids are still wonderfully portrayed and detailed. The lows have a little more presence than the mids and highs, but these just makes them non fatiguing, and also they still sound great when there is outside noise. The lows are not the fastest in attack or recovery but can still keep up with moderately fast music, only falling slightly behind with the likes of Suicide Silence. Sometimes there is a little boom (resonance) from certain mid bass frequencies, but nothing too major.

Mids: This is where these shine compared to quite a few other budget options, the mids are not recessed to any extent, and also have great detail. They are also well separated and also have good timbre to them. Male vocals never sound too lush, and female vocals always stand out, neither sound congested with the other frequencies, also guitars can have good body when it comes to acoustic, yet still have power and authority with rock. I can say that Mumford & Sons sounds great, because these don't become congested, everything can be heard, with the body from the kick drums and Double Bass, twang of the banjo and vocals shining through. Only a small hint of sibilance can be detected in the upper mids.

Highs: Well these don't fail completely here, but also don't excell. The mids is where it is at on these. The highs do have some presence, but do fall slightly behind the mids and lows. I do however like the extension and detail in the highs, not becoming splashy like quite a few other IEM's around the price. The highs really depends on the music too, as with Funeral For A Friend, at the beginning the highs are very crisp and detailed, then then take a bit of a back seat and come out again in the chorus, from what I can hear they have a bit of a dip where top hats are tapped, yet cymbal crashes shine through. So overall the highs are good, but could do with a small boost (rockbox treble boost 3 fixes most of the problems without making them fatiguing).

Soundstage is not overly wide but is airy and well layered.  Instrument separation is very good, and imaging is also fine.


Overall these are a great budget IEM that has an enjoyable yet quite well balanced sound. These have great mids, the treble needs a little boost though. In terms of detail these are great, the compete with the competition, the Brainwavz M5 have better highs but these have better body, the Dunu offerings sound a little darker, and the SoundMAGIC E30 is a little better balanced but not as full bodied. These are well built, and sound good, great for a throw around IEM, and for only $55 you cannot go wrong with them to be honest for an all rounder.

Sound Perfection Rating: 8/10

Tracks Used:
Skrillex – First Of The Year (Equinox) (320kbps MP3)
Paramore – Franklin (320kbps MP3)
Diana Krall – The Girl In The Other Room (FLAC)
Deolinda – Passou Por Mim E Sorriu (live) (ALAC)
Suicide Silence – Unanswered (FLAC)
Massive Attack – Angel (ALAC)
Eat Static – Dzhopa Dream (ALAC)
The XX – Crystalised (FLAC)
Funeral For A Friend – Bend Your Arms To Look Like Wings (ALAC)
Mumford & Sons – Little Lion Man (FLAC)
The Scene Aesthetic – Humans (259kbps MP3)
A Hero A Fake – Swallowed By The Sea (254kbps MP3)
Johnny Craig – Children Of Divorce (161kbps MP3)
Deadmau5 + Kaskade – I Remember (Caspa Remix) (320kbps MP3)
Black Uhuru – Utterance (ALAC)
We Are The In Crowd – Never Be What You Want (226kbps MP3)
Silverstein – Discovering The Waterfront (320kbps MP3)
Concept Of Thought – Our Thought (FLAC)
Nirvana – Something In The Way (Unplugged) (ALAC)


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