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Please excuse my ignorance of Campfire Audio products; however, I'm at a loss as to why a single DD IEM is priced at this level. I own several higher end IEM's such as Vibro Aria's, 64A U4SE, EarSonics SM64, and AudioTechnica CKS1100. I understand that the examples I stated are mostly BA only, with the exception of my ATH's (which use dual push-pull DD's). All of the IEM's i mentioned are at a lower price point than these Lyra II.
I'm not being combative, I want to be educated on why CFA products are superior. All I see when I read this description of Lyra II is a single driver surrounded by really fancy materials that I interpret to convince audio enthusiasts that they must be top notch because the housing and driver assembly is made with an unpopular alloy.
My ATH's deliver incredible punch and and clear frequencies up to 40kHz (albeit with intervention from my DAC's equalizer to boost the highs). Am I to believe that Lyra II is able to give me a superior audio experience using a single driver at 3x the cost just because the materials used come from space?!?
I consent that number of drivers/BA's does not equal superior performance. Help a fellow lover of audio out!
Take a look at the Vega if you think this is expensive.
It's a controversial point - the Lyra II isn't remotely near the pinnacle of single DD pricing (see: Final Audio Design Piano Forte X, HiFiMAN RE2000). Even the AKG 3003 and Sennheiser IE800, that have been around for years, are more expensive than this.
I think there may be a bit of 'snobbery' and a bit of a pissing contest when it comes to BAs, particularly multi-driver BAs. Perhaps similar to people thinking planar or electrostatic cans are always better than dynamic cans simply because they're "hip" technologies.
A lot of BA drivers themselves are off-the-shelf units made by the likes of Knowles that anybody could buy. BAs also have very non-linear impedance (especially 3+ driver units) which make them VERY pissy to use with certain sources - typically, anything with 3+ drivers used with a DAP with >2.5 ohms output impedance is going to sound pretty bad. The Andromeda sounded underwhelming off my phone, and the SE846 sounded damn awful. Through a Fiio E12A with an 0.3 ohm output impedance, it's a different story. Even single-driver BAs have this issue, although not to that extreme.
So, I ask - why do dynamic drivers have to be cheap?
Single DDs are coming back in a big way. They deliver sound that BAs cannot match yet, due the movement of air. Fair enough there's usually a compromise in that you lose something also. That is, however, where tech comes in. Materials and engineering is where that difference is made up. You could say the same about many products. The only thing that matters is would you pay that money for the sound you get. There are a lot of independent reviews on these, and they are pretty stellar. In my experience CA make very good IEMs. I have some of their BA iems and I was hoping they'd get into dynamics because BAs are cold on a lot of music. To a certain extent CFA are expensive because they are hand made in the US...but mostly it's because they are made with real care and attention. And if you email them, one of the main guys emails back with a long and detailed response. They love what they do, from the messages I get back from them. And I'd rather pay more for that.
Thanks for the response guys! I can totally get on board with backing these companies because of their obvious passion and knowledge of the field. This is the exact reason I jumped on Luke's Vibro Labs train. I don't fault CFA for pricing the way they do. I just don't have the experience yet to settle my mind. My biggest concern is if I drop $500 on a single DD monitor , will I be underwhelmed? Chances are I won't, but purchasing them from Massdrop instead of direct removes the ability for returns should I be disappointed.
And thanks @thefitz for the info on BA impedance, I was not aware of that issue. I'll have to pay attention to that with my higher output impedance players.
Yeah I get you. It's always difficult to know whether you'll super happy when you can't try them. I have some of their iems so I'd be more confident. One thing I'd say is that the CEO of CA has worked towards single DDs since they started the company. They have multiple BA iems but his vision was to create the best and purest single DDs. Now, the Vega is the flagship and Dorado one down. Then Lyra II. All of them have had great reception. Personally I'm in agreement with comments above. The achievements of BAs and fitting 50 into an iem is a nice parallel, but the elegance that comes with single DD moving air - just like the best speakers in the world - is more appealing. Ultimately, the best approach I have found is to have the best pair of BA iems and the best pair of DD iems I can reasonably afford. Best of both worlds.
No problem - definitely find out about the impedance. Multi-driver units tend to sound awful, and single BA units send to sound mega thin if your output impedance is high. If it's less that 0.5 ohms, it's all good.
I have them from the last drop. I agree they are warm very warm. However the soundstage is huge. Best for pop rap rock not as good for jazz classical. Not that instrumentals don't sound good They do . its just that a more neutral iem is better for those genres . However I really like mine and would recommend them. At this price you can't beat it .
Its the same story with etymotic er4xr/sr , single BA iem monitor. It is priced at $450. Yet, it is the most neutral and very accurate iem.
The clarity,sound quality and ,its single-driver architecture beat tons of multi-driver ba iem doubles its price easily. I have been looking forward to this drop as well. Very tempting