The Moondrop Chu II was sent to me as a review sample from Moondrop which I thank!
However the review will still be 100% honest and in no way biased.
I’m not an audiophile, I’m just a guy that likes to test out different IEMs/DACs and spends a lot of time listening to music.
So I’m not going to use super technical words to review it but I will do my best to describe them.
- Cavity material: ZN alloy
- Driver : 10mm high-performance dynamic driver
- Diaphragm : Aluminum-magnesium alloy composite diaphragm
- Headphone Jack: 0.78mm-2 pin
- Plug : 3.5mm single-ended
- Frequency Response: 15Hz-38KHz
- Effective Frequency Response: 20Hz-20KHz (IEC 60318-4,3dB)
- impedance: 18Ω±15%
- THD: THD≤0.5% (@1KHz,94dB)
Moondrop Chu II Packaging:
The Moondrop Chu II box looks like a much more expensive product. They overdid it! Inside we find accessories such as:
- Nice leather bag
- Cable 0.78mm-2 pin
- 1 set of tips ( No Springtips)
I was surprised not to find the Spring tips inside but just generic tips. The cable doesn’t look bad but to the touch I liked the material used in the CHU more. There is also a leather carrying bag.
Moondrop Chu II Design/Build Quality:
The Moondrop Chu II quality for 19 usd is crazy! I can’t believe it’s possible to have a full metal shell with a similar finish for so little.
The shape is identical to Chu, but the angle of the nozzle looks slightly different!
Furthermore, the nozzle of the CHU II is really interesting, you can change the tuning filters and if you want you can add tuning sponges to experiment. What I didn’t like in the CHU was the fixed cable, but finally it’s just a bad memory!
As far as the paintwork is concerned, it is always very beautiful. I haven’t had any problems with the old ones either.
Comfort and fit is improved from Chu.
Initial sound impression:
The Moondrop Chu II at first listen I can absolutely say that they are more comfortable and are definitely an upgrade over the Chu. The bass is slightly increased but also seems a little bit slow to me. Female and Male voices are consistent enough but the trebles can be a bit harsh at times (need ears burn-in).
The sound is intimate, the soundstage is quite narrow and lacks some air.
Whether it works or not I’ve done a burn-in of about 50 hours.
Final sound impression:
Equipment used for testing above.
- Redmi Note 7 (MIUI Based)
- Foobar2000 24bit 192khz (iMac)
- Amazon music UHD 24bit 96khz (Both)
- F.Audio KS01 3.5mm (ESS ES9038Q2M)
- EPZ TP20 3.5 mm (Dual Cirrus 43131)
- Hidizs XO 3.5mm (Dual ESS ES9219C)
- EPZ TP30 (Dual ESS)
Before jumping to final impressions, know that your ears need some burn-in too.
Coming from a whole week with the Blon Z300 I was now used to a decidedly warmer timbre.
I’m not listing the tracks because they’re too much.
My impressions are given using the original accessories.
I confirm my first impressions but after several hours of listening things have changed slightly.
What makes significant improvements is replacing the tips.
With Kbear or Nicehck 07 tips you get some nice improvements. Treble is a little bit tamed and bass is increased. Using wide bore tips you get the best result.
The Moondrop CHU II is a fun V-shape with a slightly warm bright signature. For what they cost they are excellent. Other than what I said in first impressions the trebles may be too much for someone coming from warm sets. The vocals lack warmth and silkiness a little but are very good (strictly personal taste) while the instruments seem quite coherent. Female vocals are better. The mids are slightly recessed, string instruments like guitars sound a bit thin in some tracks. As for the bass, they are more present but a bit slow, the sub bass lacks using stock tips.
I personally opted to replace the tips with those of the Thruthear Hola, specifically the big bore tips (similar to the Whizzer SS20) which greatly help the soundstage and since they seal perfectly they also help the bass which is immediately more full-bodied and consequently also the trebles are more controlled.
The cable is completely fine, I tried a better quality one from Nicehck but I didn’t hear any differences so I went back to the stock one.
Soundstage & Imaging
Keep in mind that the soundstage is narrow. Imaging is good but limited. Overall I would still say average. They are certainly very good for their price range. Just change your tips!
I have listened to Jazz, R&B, Pop, EDM & Chill music and I think it is also the most suitable for this iem.
Moondrop Chu II Comparison:
Moondrop Chu II is the updated version of CHU. Comfort is on a whole other level thanks to the normal 0.78 pin cable. I was sad not to find the Springtips but instead we have the tuning nozzles that can be changed or modified.
I ran an A/B test using F.Audio KS01. Same volume level, same music track.
The bass is way more thicker on the CHU II. The trebles are more protagonists giving more details.
If the CHU can be listened to even at 70% the CHU II must be listened to at 60% of the volume. There’s more energy and trebles so you can face more fatigue over long sessions.
vs Tanchijm Zero
If you prefer neutral bright sounding iems, this is absolutely for you. Obviously the bass is much more natural, but what amazes is the absurd level of detail and technicalities. The trebles are extremely polished and the female vocals have that silkiness. Wider than average soundstage and precise imaging. They are two iems with a completely different target but they are definitely a set to have.
A warm and relaxed version of CHU II. If you are sensitive to high frequencies Hola is definitely still a great alternative. The bass is at the same level but the sub-bass is more pronounced. Seems to lack some trebles detail and air. Mids are less recessed.
These are positioned between the neutral of the Tanchjim and the fun of the CHU II. A neutral with a slight low-end boost and more punchy highs. Personally I have never liked them that much but I would say that they are definitely inferior to the CHU II. As bass they should correspond to CHU but the overall sound is decidedly less warm.
Less bass but more presence in the mids that feel less recessed. The highs are confident and not fatiguing. The sensation is of a more precise imaging and a slightly wider soundstage than the CHU II. They are still a great alternative nowadays.
For strictly personal musical taste I think I love the first CHU more due his warmer timbre. In terms of performance and comfort, the latter are absolutely better.
The Moondroop CHU II is however a miracle for what they cost. They are a clear upgrade compared to the old ones from every point of view. Have fun doing tips rolling!
It’s a decidedly interesting set for endless DIY tuning possibilities. Excellent for those who want to enter this world without spending.
I’m definitely curious to see if Moondrop will put tuning filters on the market. I would certainly be curious to try them.
- Shell quality and materials are exceptional
- Premium packaging
- Removable cable
- High quality nozzle (removable tuning filter)
- More comfortable than CHU
- Fun tuning
- Improved Bass
- Good details
- Intimate sound
- Easy to drive (you don’t need anything expensive)
- No high quality tips (not a big issue)
- Narrow soundstage
- Slightly bright or undefined trebles on some tracks ( maybe too much for someone, could be harsh.)
- Bass could be too much