China-based ND Audio, a newly established company, entered the Chi-Fi market to establish a presence for themselves by releasing their new budget IEM namely the DD3 which has a nanometer level diaphragm embedded in a 10mm Dual Magnetic Dual Cavity Dynamic Driver for exceptional audio quality and a better listening experience. In this review let’s check about the ND DD3 in detail through the following sections.
ND DD3 IEM SPECIFICATIONS:
Impedance: 45/35/35/34 Ohms
Driver Unit: 10mm Dual Magnetic Dual Cavity Dynamic Driver
Connector: 2Pin 0.75mm
Cable: Silver-Plated Detachable Cable
Sound Profile: V shaped with tuning controls that produce four distinct sound profiles namely Powerful Low Frequencies, Vibrant High Frequencies, Natural Balance, Enhanced Low Frequencies.
Tone and Timbre: For a single dynamic driver, it has a strange warm and metallic quality to its sound.
Frequency Response: Has a strong bass profile, a duller mid section and a response that feels average in the treble region.
Technicalities: Non-Holographic imaging is the technical term for this. The production appears to be expansive with the scene slightly being more open than usual. The capability of layering is only average.
ND DD3 IN DEPTH ANALYSIS:
- Since they are warm IEM’s, the bass feels bigger but the quality is just on the average side.
- There’s no clear distinction between the sub and the mid bass section.
- The slow decay and attack are what made the bass sound heavy and fuller.
- Though the bass is not very good technically, it has a lot of quantity which gives it a bigger and more dynamic sound.
- The bass sounds the same in all four switches which makes me to question the functionality of it.
- Recessed in terms of presentation with intimate vocals and instrumentals.
- The bigger bass makes the lower mid section feel fuller, but the bleed makes it feel a little bloated.
- The metallic quality of the tone makes it sound unnatural, which makes the vocals and instruments sound fake.
- The upper midsection feels good and is clear enough.
- The vocals are in the front, which pushes back instruments like piano notes.
- Extension is well-done, and there is enough brightness.
- When the percussion instruments sound metallic, it does not sound natural or good.
- Detail retrieval is good, and the tracks have all the necessary nuances.
- The crash of the cymbals and the delayed decay of the trumpets make the music sound more splashy and lively.
ND DD3 VERDICT:
DD3, the latest offering from the house of ND audio falls under the budget chi-fi category which indeed is a strong competitive market. Being their first budget IEM in their catalog the IEM does deliver some competition but not the most impactful one. This product is priced around 18-20 USD.
Even though the DD3 has a fun and lively sound, it does not have what I call “TONE,” which is the basic quality I like best. Being very warm and metallic does not make the listener happy and makes the presentation seem more robotic and unnatural.
Even though the tone and technical aspects are not great, this will please casual listeners who like a fun sound and a nice wide scene. Using this as a starting point, the brand should focus more on the TONE aspect in the next version. The tuning modes do not change the sound much, so they are mostly there for show.
As a good alternative, I would choose the KZ LINGLONG because it has a pleasing overall tone and is well-balanced. It also costs about the same or even a little less.
Overall, the DD3 is a lot like CAT ON THE WALL in that it is great for casual listeners but needs a lot of sound improvements to stay in this competitive market. Hopefully, the brand will make these changes in their next line of products.
POSITIVES AND NEGATIVES:
- Fun and Expansive Scene
- Decent Accessories
- Tone and Timbre (Metallic)
- Tuning Switches (Merely produces the change)
This unit has been provided to me by CONCEPTKART and thanks to them for giving me this opportunity to check out this product. The whole review is based on my views and experience hence it might differ from person to person.
If you are interested in purchasing this product in India, please feel free to go ahead via this unaffiliated link: https://conceptkart.com/products/nd-dd3-iem?variant=40370688196682