The Kiwi Ears Cadenza was the final of the new-generation budget iems, and they all got their first impressions here. And now comes review time, starting with the last; Kiwi Ears Cadenza.
Kiwi Ears is another chifi company but their models are solid. It’s previous Orchestra was reviewed here. Now the Cadenza arrived thanks to Linsoul Audio.
Natural, organic, bodied
Great resolution and layering
Soundstage isn’t so wide
Very rare sibilance
Revealing more than usual
Review will be done after dx300 listening. Timbre is neutral to slightly bright. Clarity, layering and tonality are it’s great features and surprising for 35 bucks. Playback is bodied and neutral but stage width isn’t fascinating. Treble and vocal extensions are pretty rich. 80’s synthesizer rhythms are pickable one by one. Decays are fast and dynamism is quite high. However, its not disturbing you by setting the stage near you.
First of all, they all know their place. And when they do, you have a thumpy 10mm DD bass. And they aren’t bleeding but sub bass incapable. Mid bass is what drives Cadenza’s basses and it’s well calculated; so you aren’t hearing thunderous basses in irreverent tracks. Thus, listening to great recordings from Abbey Road was a wonderful experience. I hadn’t heard Joe Bonamassa in that many details and tonalities before, and none seem to be melding in each other. The bassy masters of pop music, in particular, aren’t turning into a muddy pulp, and you can hear Madonna and her back vocals in all their distinctiveness. (She was dubbed a star before the digital age, and you can hear her voice.) PS: Hearing a bass guitar in its OG texture and weight was a rare experience for me, Caddy restored my memories 🙂
So smooth and fluid. Texturing power isn’t making you regret. After Cadenza and its midband performance, the Doors’ rock’n’roll and blues-influenced psychedelic rock is fantastic. You can easily separate the keyboard, harmonica, drums, guitars and Morissons slightly crispy and tired (of the life, sex and drugs) vocal. But tango music isn’t so dynamic even though its full with heavenly harmony. Slam is a term it is lacking and the music can’t climb up very quickly and some passages in that genre isn’t so reflecting. PF, on the other hand, is making your face smile by projecting the legendary High Hopes like you’ve never heard it under $100 before..These all good sides can easily turn into bad. Because, keeping the Etymotic Er mention I did in the first impressions post, with its layering and detail extraction capacity after fueling up with high power etc can show you the simplicity of some records by showing you repeating guitar riffs in the main body of the tracks.
Its treble mainly depends on gain settings of the source device. It is L gain and dx300. You hear pronounced cymbals sizzling along the tempo of the track. However, their quantity isn’t disturbing. Proof? My treble test track Pharoah Sanders “You’ve Got to Have Freedom said so with its sax intro. Electronic trebles aren’t piercing your ears as well, save Cadenza is showing female vocals prone to sibilances. Some treble happy bands like RATTM or smooth jazz genre (mainly with D. Krall) proved so.
Cable Check and Balanced Listen
Now I will be using Dunu Amber 3.5mm to AB its OG cable. Although the waste of using a 100 bucks cable with a 35 bucks iem is obvious; it is helping us to assess the sound quality enhancement of the OG cable.
The sound you hear becomes clearer, like looking at a glass floored building. (respect to We of Zamyatin https://www.abebooks.com/products/isbn/9780140185850) With all of the synthesizer action running beneath it, 80’s pop music is now crystal clear.
Hearing the 2nd and 3rd layers of the music in good recordings is possible now. One can swear that the guitar solo at your left wasn’t there before! Madonna’s bass influenced mix is more balanced and everything is smoother. Layers are distinguishable, and the whole track is richer..All the changes before were in the range of %20-30 but Roadhouse Blues turned into something else in terms of soundstage, positioning, and texture.
Cadenza was spun around once more by the powerful (in specs) 4.4 balanced output. Now its clearer and smoother than ever. Snares are more snappy than ever. Body in any track is not just for show, you can hear which instrument created it. You can hear the slightest metallic hit in 80’s. A. Cooper returned with all the layers on its national anthem esque song. We Gotta Rise. And electronic basses gained a living on their own, as well as those tracks started to show you their layers
You gotta be kidding after especially in terms of balanced usage. It can sweep down the competition unless the listener demands something particular like bone shattering basses or ripping trebles. But here are some comparisons just in the sake of not missing this part.
vs BQEYZ Autumn: Cadenza have the upper hand by playing a little more bodied, clear, wider and warmer. Surprising, because Autumn shouldn’t leave the ground so quickly. First was Winter and now this..
vs Dunu TitanS: TitanS is displaying its titan naming. Like x0.5 better than Cadenza save layering. TitanS is still solid.
vs TRI i3 Pro: A soundstage width like balanced listening with Cadenza. But its showing it’s age despite being a tribrid of DD + BA + Planar. Clarity, layering, tonality, precision and instrument separation are better is Kiwi Ears Cadenza save stage width. The i3pro, with its grand soundstage, is perched atop its aged pedestal.
Kiwi Ears Cadenza Review
The budget term signed under incredible advances over time. The 10mm Beryllium Dynamic Driver has greatly aided its tuning, resulting in an iem capable of dethroning some notable iems. We’re expecting a lot more from the new Kiwi Ears Cadenza Pro, Mk2, Plus, and so on. And thanks to Linsoul Audio for making this review possible. Here are the non affiliated link if you desire to buy.