Kinera H3 review - expatinjapan





Kinera H3 review
-expatinjapan



A surprising affordable IEM that burst onto the audio scene in recent times and won the hearts of many a new convert to its build, design and dynamic sound.

Coming in a variety of colorful styles, visually beautiful and affordable.

Unboxing


The Kinera H3 comes in a simple and stylish black card box.

An adapter for airplane travel, and 1/4 adaptor plug and a hard card shell case for keeping the earphones safe and clean when on the move.


The case itself is quite spacious and one could be able to fit two or three earphones within.


The Kinera H3 comes with a two cable and a study 3.5mm plug.

I got the simple black version but there are some very cool looking two tone versions available.

The Kinera H3 has screens to protect its internals from wax and other grime.



The Kinera H3 comes with a selection of tips to get you started.



Always nice to get a thank you. :)

Specifications



Model : KINERA H3 In-ears monitor
Color available :translucent black /red/ blue
Driver: 2BA+1D
Impedance: 48Ω
Frequency Response: 20-20000HZ
Sensitivity: 101DB
L&R Channel Balance Sensitivity: <2DB
Max Input Power: 10mW
Cable Length: 1.2meter
Wire Material: 6n single crystal copper plating silver
Plug material: 3.5mm golden plated
Earphone interface: 2-pin (0.78mm )
Package

Kinera H3
6 pairs of silicone eartips (S/M/L)
2 adapters
Carry box




Sound

Kinera H3 and Opus#3 dap.

 The Kinera H3 was tested and reviewed with a variety of daps using FLAC tracks at home, commuting and resting at cafes drinking coffee.

The Kinera H3 is built for on the go, its a simple no fuss 1 dynamic driver and two BAs. Generally I would expect a V shaped sound for this particular combination of drivers and the H3 stayed true to traditional form and expectations in this regard.


Do you want some bass? You got it! Do you want treble? You have it. Want some mids?...well heres a sprinkle for you, enough to keep things coherent but not invade that V shaped engine built for dynamism and energy.

The bass is surprising generally controlled, although on some more heavy tracks it found the going a bit difficult and it could get a bit unruly and boomy, but this was the exception to the rule, and there is enough quality bass to satisfy even the most jaded budget fi shopper.
I thought the sub bass was present enough and separate from the lower bass reaches to again give that sense of general control. 
Its definitely not a bass head bass.

The mids are recessed as to be expected with this particular design, which is a favorite for many listeners who prefer their earphones with a little less mids. Adjusting the gain didn't effect any serious significant changes in this regard, but it did add that lil something, something that brought the H3 to a fuller performance.

The highs are the show stealer, it definitely leans that way at times, giving a sense of clearness, detail  and clarity. At various times it can venture in sibilance, but not excessively so its generally quite forgiving. But for my precious spoiled ears due to my small stable of high end IEMs I found that extended listening of several hours could be a little fatiguing for me, also I am not a adherent to the V signature cult.

The Kinera H3 was fine from low to just above mid volume listening levels, push it too far in the volume stakes and it could loose some of its control on the lower and also at the high end.

I found the width of the sound stage to be greater than the depth. Height is good.
Instrument separation is quite acceptable.


Kinera H3 and Shozy Alien+ dap

I swapped a few cables to see If I could edged any sonic improvements out of the Kinera H3, and there were some but they were mainly incremental and were most noticed the higher up the Dap chain I traveled. Those dynamic drivers do enjoy a bit of extra power to drive them.

Probably most users will be using a mobile phone or a sub $400 dap to listen to music with the Kinera H3 and won`t be connecting a $500 or so cable and a $1000 dap to it.

I did enough plunking on the Double Helix Cables silver SPC, it seemed to open up the energy more and gave a bit more control to the bass.

The Kinera H3 cable is a 6N silver coated copper cable.


Kinera H3, Double Helix cable and Symbio Mandarines tips.
Build



The nozzles have a slight ring on them, 
but I would prefer something more substantial to hold the tips firmly in place,



Stock photos via Kinera to show the different models available.


Kinera H3 and Opus#2 dap. Overkill.

Overall

The Kinera H3 clocks in at a cool and affordable US$99. The usual 'good performance for the price' etc etc terms have been bandied about as usual, but I can attest this is one of those (not so sleeper) hits. A sub $100 earphone I can recommend to friends quite safely.

The Kinera H3 comes with a quality cable that is fairly void of micro phonics when on the move, it looks to be in two styles and has a clear version and another which has a brown material covering of the cable which accompanies the black version which I have. I really like the look of the red and blue shell versions and their accompanying cables.
Great for photography.

The shell of the H3 resembles the iBasso IT03 a little with its inner ear guide flange.
And as such this earphone is very comfortable, I was able to wear it for extended periods with no apparent discomfort due to the fit.

Isolation is good, great when I did some tip rolling and put on the Symbio Mandarines. It does need a design change in an addition of a groove/rim on the end of the nozzles to lock tips more in place,  especially the silicone ones.

The cable is stylish and comes in a variety of styles depending on which model of H3 is purchased. Its great to see more companies offering quality cables in two pin (or in other cases MMCX) with their IEMs.

I did get some improvements , though not overly dramatic when I switched around cables. Usually the copper vs silver experience was most significant. The Kinera H3 being a silver plated copper cable.

Its a difficult item to review because it does so many things well for a fraction of the price, and also is a hyped item amongst consumers and also fellow reviewers.

Admittedly when I first listened i was quite stunned at the quality, later listening sobered me up more as its various limitations and faults were revealed, and of course the H3 could not hope to compete with some of my other higher end IEMs - which is to be expected. Later listening revealed the Kinera H3 to be a quality product that performs quite well, consistently and competently even in comparison to its more pricey cousins.

The various minuscule shortcomings of the Kinera H3 doesn't detract from what is in fact a decent earphone that has made waves in the online audiophile community, and is a continuation of the recent trend of more and more lower price earphones displaying decent build, design and sound quality.
Consumers are going to have more and more options to satisfy their wallets in the coming years.

To close, the Kinera H3 does live up to the hype surrounding it, a great shell design, a more than decent cable and an overall sonic performance that ticks all the right boxes If judged within its intended consumer market, It has its minor short comings, but those are to be expected for US$99, but as I have written these are minor in what is an excellent all round product.

Pretty as a picture.



Thank you to Kinera for sending the Head pie the Kinera H3 for review and impressions.





2 comments :

  1. Nicely written, but you don't mention the tracks you used. On the bass side of things, I wish you would use tracks of Primus, Magma, early Yes, certainly the album Fragile which was already a high end recording long before the term was invented.Fourth album of Talking Heads is also great with Tina Weymouth at her very best on the bass. By the way, great pictures to😊

    ReplyDelete
  2. Yeah I dont list tracks as much as i used to.

    It can be handy for some.

    Generally I put it on shuffle so I get a variety of tracks over the course of a week or two.

    Then get my averages from that.

    ReplyDelete