Its been almost been a year since we last released a new Brainwavz earphones or headphone, our hands have hardly been idle, our team has been crafting the next generation of Brainwavz earphones (as well as quite busy moving office and taking care of MP4 Nation ). Everything is now falling into place and we're ready to start showing some of our handy work. The first of our new models comes into the R-dual driver series of earphones, the R3 is a different bred of dual driver earphones with the two speakers facing each other into a sound chamber, which then directs the lush audio into your ear canals.
These set of images are still of our prototype and not of a mass production unit, the only two major changes in design will be how the memory cable is used on the R3 and the addition of a nozzle mesh to stop any debris from entering the nozzle and sound chamber.
The Brainwavz R3:
About the design & build:
We really wanted to keep with a industrial look The R3 so we choose to make it out of high grade, CNC cut aluminum and went with keeping the natural color of the metal instead of coloring it, the housings are not light weight either. The metal housing is not small, this i do believe may cause some people with smaller ears to have some problem with wearing these in a over the ear manner, but they can also be worn straight down. The nozzle had to be extended a few times to ensure that most people would not have a problem with insertion.
We really felt that for dual dynamic drivers to fully shine the positioning of the speakers was critical, we felt that the speakers being next to each other or one behind the other not really the most efficient way to get the most out of a dynamic speakers, the two methods of positioning are what you normally find in dual dynamic earphones, like our R1. Instead we came up with the idea of positioning them facing each other but with ample space so that one would not affect the others performance. We really weren't sure how this type of positioning would affect the sound, i've never really seen earphones with speakers positioned in such a way, it was a gamble and with the rightly tuned drivers we found a good synergy that produced some very good results. More on the SQ later.
The Strain relief, splitter and plug are designed to take quite a lot of abuse, their size and design will help reduce the chance of cable fatigue setting around areas where the cable would normally twist and turn the most during normal usage. We also went with a thicker gauge of cable to help with the durability and also as part of the industrial feel of the earphones. Just to point out that even with the sturdy build these earphones are not indestructible, like with any earphones the best way to keep them working is to properly take care and store them.
These are not small earphones, they are not even remotely shaped to what earphones normally look like and this did cause us to revise the design of the housing a few times, we also initially went with wearing these straight down but found that we got the best fit and seal when worn over the ear. As mentioned before we revised the nozzle length a few times so that tips could snugly fit into a persons ear, the nozzle is quite long, longer than any other earphones i have every used or seen, but they do sit comfortable in your ear and even with the large housing the earphones sit comfortably and don't place much strain on your ears or ear canal.
I actually would prefer to leave this part as short as possible, i personally think these sound great, they work well with almost any genre of music, they have a tight controlled bass and can even hit that sub bass well while vocals and instruments come out clear and detailed. What really shines with the R3 is the sound stage and really good separation and this is really down to how the sound chamber plays into the design. The two drivers used are not that different from each other, there are slight differences in their design that make each perform better in certain aspects than the other, but really there is no one woofer and no one tweeter, its just two well tuned drivers with a good synergy when used in tandem.The R3 does benefit with amping, i mainly used a FiiO E12 and the they pair very well with the R3, amping vs non amping, the difference is with a amp you get a more full bodied sound, i do recommend it but they do perform quite well without a amp. I won't talk more on the sound quality, i've never been particularly good at describing in words what i hear, i'll leave that to the people we will send these out to review.
Just for those looking for comparisons, i went out and got some dual dynamic driver earphones that i could find in the store and that didn't cost me a small mortgage, i only really found found the JVC dual & triple driver models, of which i picked up the HA-FXT90 and HA-FXZ100 (i passed on buying the HA-FXZ200 as i found the HA-FXZ100 had a almost similar sound but the FXZ200 was way to bass heavy for my own liking, the lesser costing FXZ100 imo was the better of the two), overall the R3 surpasses the FXT90 and is more on par with the sound type of the FXZ100 (triple driver). I honestly do like the FXZ100 and would recommend it to people too.
Its not final yet, but it will be a lot more than the R1 and more than the M3, but less than the B2.
Thats it for now, i'll answer any questions you may have, i won't be posting any more images of the R3 until its ready for its proper introduction to the world. I will be sending some review units out, i hope that early reviews will start to come in by the end of June. We are trying for a end of june to mid july release of these.
You can follow development and discuss here