ddHiFi Janus 2 (E2020B) IEM Review

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

ddHiFi Janus 2 (E2020B) IEM Review

 

 

Introduction:

ddHiFi (DD Electronics Technology Co.Ltd.) is a relative young company located in China that is specialized in the producing of Portable Audio Accessories like Protective/Storage Case’s for DAP’s, DAC’s, etc. and DAC/AMP Adaptors for Smartphone’s and Tablets.

The Janus 2 (E2020B) is the successor of the original Janus with the model number E2020A. The Janus 2 features a single full range dynamic with a diameter of 10mm, which is located inside a monitor shell that is made of a combination of PC (plastic) and 316 grade stainless steel materials. The Janus 2 comes with the same unique dual connector feature, which means you can use cables with both MMCX (Micro Miniature Coaxial) and 0.78mm Diameter 2-Pin connectors.

 

 

Disclaimer:

I would like to thank ddHiFi for providing me Janus 2 (E2020B) sample for review purposes. I am not affiliated with ddHiFi beyond this review and these words reflect my true, unaltered opinions about the product.

 

 

 

Price & Availability: 

The ddHiFi Janus 2 (E2020B) is available in two different bundle options, the Standard Edition that comes bundled with an High Quality upgrade cable, the C80A storage case and the C10A Magnetic that is available for $199,99 USD. The second option SE Youth Edition comes with a plain cable and less fancy looking storage case that is available for $149,99 USD.

More information’s can be found under the link below;

 

 

 

 

Package and Accessories:

The ddHiFi Janus 2 In-Ear Monitor comes inside a rectangular recycled cardboard box material and has some brandings in green color on the top.

Please note that the details below are for the Janus 2 Standard Edition.

 

Inside of the box are the following Items/Accessories:

  • 1 pair x DD HiFi Janus 2 (E2020B) In-Ear Monitors
  • 1 pcs x ddHiFi BC110A Detachable Upgrade Cable (3.5mm + MMCX)
  • 3 pairs x Bass Silicone Ear Tips
  • 3 pairs x Treble Silicone Ear Tips
  • 1 pcs x ddHiFi Earphone Storage Case (C80A)
  • 1 pcs x Magnetic Cable Clip (C10A)
  • 10 pcs x MMCX hole dust cover
  • 1 x Manual/Warranty Card

 

The ddHiFi Janus 2 In-Ear Monitor comes with 6 pairs of silicone air tips. 3 pairs are the bass enhancement tips; while the other 3 pairs are do have a wider opening for higher treble response.

The ddHiFi C80A is a very fancy looking PU Leather (Polyurethane Leather) Storage case that can also be purchased separately under the following link: C80A Storage Case

The C80A has a real microfiber lining that will protect your earphones/IEM’s from scratches. The symmetrical flip cover is located on the side, which can be opened easily. The double-sided magnet design enables them to attract to each other regardless it’s placed above or bellow.

The package of the “Standard Edition” includes ddHiFi’s double sided dual magnetic cable clip with the model Number C10A, which is a very nice addition. This Magnetic Cable Clip can also be purchased separately under the following link: C10B Magnetic Cable Clip

The ddHiFi Janus 2 comes also with the BC110A High Purity Silver Plated OFC upgrade cable, which has a total length of about 120cm. The cable has a nice braided design that features a pretty soft and non-microphonic transparent isolation.

The MMCX female connectors do have a transparent plastic housing in form of a cylinder. The male connectors have a moderately tight and pretty secure fit.

The cable features both a Y splitter and a chin slider made of metal material.

The 3.5mm Single Ended Headphone plug has a straight profiled metal housing in grey color, which has the ddHiFi branding on the top.

 

 

 

 

Design, Fit and Build Quality:

The ddHiFi Janus 2 is equipped with a 10mm diameter Single Full Range Dynamic Driver and an the dual socket system. ddHiFi named this In-Ear Monitor after the Roman’s God of beginnings “Janus”, symbolized by two faces, which is the interpretation by ddHiFi for the Dual Socket system. The unique Dual Socket system means that each monitor features two different connectors at the same time, which are the MMCX and 0.78mm diameter 2-Pin connectors.

The monitor shell of the Janus has a form of a capsule and is made of two different materials.The front part where the sound nozzle is located is made of 316 grade Stainless Steel material, while the main body is made of high strength PC transparent plastic material.

The internal wires used inside Janus 2 are developed and provided by EFFECT Audio. The wire is made of a combination of OFC (Oxygen Free Copper) and Silver material.

On the front of the monitor shell is the sound nozzle that has a metal mesh on the top to avoid the insertion of small particles’ like dust and earwax that could damage the driver over time.

On the top of both ends are the connectors, MMCX (Micro Miniature Coaxial) and 2-Pin female connectors.

The part with the 2-Pin connector sports the ddHiFi branding, L or R and + / – markings. The right side of the 2-Pin connector has also a red color indicator for an easier identification.

The Janus 2 is a very lightweight IEM with a very ergonomic shape, which makes it to an ideal IEM for long listening periods.

The isolation is below above average dues to the openings located on the front and rear side of the monitor shell.

 

 

 

Specifications:

  • Shell Material  : PC Plastic and 316 Grade Stainless Steel
  • Drivers            : 10mm Diameter Single Full Range Dynamic Driver
  • Impedance      : 12Ω
  • Freq. Range   : 20 Hz – 20 kHz
  • Sensitivity       : 105dB
  • Cable              : Detachable
  • Connector       : MMCX & 2-Pin Sockets
  • Plug                : 3.5mm Single Ended (TRS)
  • Size                : 9x13x8.5mm
  • Wight              : 8.3gram (without the cable)

 

 

 

Drivability:

The Janus 2 is a very efficient In-Ear Monitor thanks to its pretty low impedance of 12ohm and a sensitivity of about 105dB. This makes it ideal for the use with relative weak sources like smartphones, tablets, while it shows its true potential if you pair it with more powerful sources like a Portable Amplifiers or DAP’s.

 

 

 

 

Equipment’s used for this review: 

  • IEM                     : ddHiFi Janus 2 (E2020B), ddHiFi Janus (E2020A), Campfire Audio Comet
  • DAP/DAC/AMP  : ddHiFi TC35 Pro, FiiO M11 Pro, Shanling UP5, xDuoo TA-604

 

 

 

Albums & tracks used for this review:

  • Hayley Westenra – Odyssey Album (Dezzer HiFi)
  • Dionne Warwick – Walk On By (Flac 16bit/44.1kHz)
  • Sarah McLachlan – Angel (Flac 24bit/48kHz)
  • Sertap Erener – Aşk (Flac 16bit/44.1kHz)
  • Edith Piaf – Non Je Ne Regrette Rien (Flac 16bit/44.1kHz)
  • Diana Krall – So Wonderful (DSF)
  • Aretha Franklin – I Say A Little Payer (Flac 24bit/96kHz)
  • David Bowie – Heroes (Flac 24bit/192kHz)
  • Barry White – Just The Way You Are (Flac 24bit/48kHz)
  • Isaac Hayes – Walk On By (Flac 16bit/44.1kHz)
  • Elton John – Rocket Man ((Flac 24bit/96kHz)
  • Sting – Englishman in New York – (Flac 24bit/48kHz)
  • Eric Clapton – Wonderful Tonight (Flac 24bit/96kHz)
  • U2 – Sunday Bloody Sunday (Flac 16bit/44.1kHz)
  • Really Slow Motion – Deadwood (Deezer HiFi)
  • Jo Blankenburg – Meraki (Spotify)
  • Lorde – Royal (Flac 24bit/48kHz)
  • Toutant – Rebirth (Deezer HiFi)
  • Portishead – It Could Be Sweet (Spotify)
  • Charly Antolini – Duwadjuwandadu (Flac 24bit/192kHz)
  • Chopin – Nocturn No. 20 In C-Sharp Minor (Flac 16bit/44.1kHz)
  • Fazıl Say – Nazım Oratoryosu (Live) (Flac 16bit/44.1kHz)
  • Vivaldi – Le QuarttroStagioni “The Four Season” (Deezer HiFi)
  • Otto Liebert& Luna Negra – The River (Flac 24bit/192kHz)
  • Armin Van Buuren – Vini Vici (Flac 16bit/44.1kHz)
  • Lunatic Soul – The Passage (Flac 16bit/44.1kHz)
  • Deftones – My Own Summer (Shove it) (Flac 16bit/44.1kHz)
  • Metallica – Sad but True (Flac 24bit/96kHz)
  • Opeth – Windowpane (Flac 16bit/44.1kHz)
  • Megadeth – Sweating Bullets (Tidal Hi-Fi)
  • Rush’s – Leave That Thing Alone (Flac 16bit/44.1kHz)
  • Slayer – Angel of Death (Spotify)s
  • Liquid Tension Experiment 2 – Acid Rain (Spotify)
  • Yosi Horikawa – Bubbles (Spotify)

 

 

 

 

The Sound:

The ddHiFi Janus 2 shows a more mature tuning compared to its predecessor, with its more versatile and balanced overall presentation. The general tonality is a tad warmer than neutral, while the bass has a pretty controlled, fast and linear tuning. The midrange is nicely detailed, transparent and slightly on the brighter side of neutral. The treble range on the other hand is fairly bright and airy, while the extension is on a moderate level.

 

Bass:

The ddHiFi Janus 2 (E2020B) shows a fairly linear bass response along with a fast, clean and controlled presentation. Especially the sense of control, layering and decay are admirable for this area, while the extension is slightly short.

The subbass region of the Janus 2 shows an average level of depth and extension, while the sense of decay, authority and control is on a pretty good level. The subbass rumble and intensity is fairly enough when I do listen to genres such like pop, rock, jazz or metal music, while genres that do need more depth and intensity such like electronic, trance or hip-hop are not that ideal for the Janus 2.

The midbass region of the Janus 2 (E2020B) is mildly pronounced and shows slightly more quantity/intensity compared to the subbass area. There are no negative situations like a midbass hump, muddiness or any type of mixings. The general presentation in this area can be described as clear, fairly detailed and controlled.

 

Midrange:

The dHiFi Janus 2 offers a pretty transparent and airy midrange atmosphere with a good level of resolution that can easily compete with IEM’s that do have double the price. Both instruments and vocals are positioned fairly upfront that makes the Janus 2 very pleasant to listen to with acoustic songs or live recorded tracks.

The lower midrange region of the Janus 2 shows in general an average sense of intensity, depth and body, while the clarity and resolution is on a pretty good level. Male vocals such like Sting, Elton John or David Bowie are reproduced with a good level of clarity and detail retrieval, while I would wish a tad more body.

The upper midrange of the ddHiFi Janus 2 is the focal point of the midrange area that is more dominant, energetic and detailed compared to the lower midrange region. Female vocals such like Edith Piaf, Sertap Erener, Aretha Franklin or Diana Krall are reproduced in a highly transparency, lively and detail manner. Instruments on the other hand such like guitars are slightly bright and are shows with a pretty good level of extension. Other instruments like violins are detailed and pronounced, while side flutes are bright and stirring.

 

Treble:

The ddHiFi Janus 2 shows fairly bright and detailed treble presentation. The transitions from the upper midrange towards the lower treble region are pretty controlled in moments when instruments do play with high level of distort on.

The lower treble area is able to produce a good sense of clarity without to sound harsh or cause irritation, when I do listen to soprano vocals like Hayley Westenra or Sertap Erener or instruments such like snare drums or pianos. The extension in this area is in general on a sufficient level.

The upper treble range shows an adequate intensity and extension, while the airiness and sparkle that is produced in this area is on a pretty efficient level, especially when I do listen to string instruments like violins or mandolins or to percussion instruments such like cymbals or snare drums. The treble range of the ddHiFi Janus 2 sounds in general pretty detailed, clear and controlled especially if you feed it with a good source such like the TC35 Pro or FiO M11 Pro.

 

Soundstage & Imaging:

The ddHiFi Janus 2 offers a pretty spacious and airy soundstage atmosphere that is suitable for a quite precise separation and positioning of instruments and vocals. The stage is shows a good sense of wideness and depth, while the height of the stage is on an average level.

  

 

 

Comparison:

ddHiFi Janus 2 (E2020B) versus ddHiFi Janus (E2020A):

The Janus 2 aka E2020B has a very similar, almost identical design with the original Janus aka E2020A; the main changes have been made to the internal parts of the In-Ear Monitor and with the new upgrade cable. However, the more important part is the sound quality, where the Janus 2 offers audible improvements in terms of performance that I would like list below.

Both the subbass and the midbass region of the Janus 2 shows a slightly better sense of body and depth, while both models are quite equal when it comes to the control and detail retrieval in this areas.

The midrange of the Janus 2 (E2020B) is slightly more forward oriented in terms of vocal and instrument presentation. Both the E2020A and the E2020B do offers a pretty airy and spacious presentation. However, the Janus 2 offers a better sense of lower midrange depth and shows also audible improvements in the upper midrange region, especially when I do listen to female vocals or to instruments such like violins or pianos.

The treble range of the Janus 2 sounds slightly more highlighted and has the upper hand in terms of airiness and sparkle.

The soundstage of both In-Ear Monitors shows a great sense of airiness and space, while the Janus 2 has a slightly advantage when it comes to the wideness of the stage.

 

 

Conclusion:

The Janus 2 aka E2020B takes all the impressive features of the original Janus (E2020A) and comes with a more mature and versatile sound tuning that shows pretty audible improvements in terms of bass response, midrange clarity & resolution and overall treble performance. Moreover, it has two bundle options, which are the basic “SE Youth Edition” and the more premium “Standard Edition”. However, I do highly recommend “Standard Edition”, which comes with a brand new upgrade cable (BC110A), very fancy Storage Case (C80A) and Magnetic Clip (C10A) that do worth every extra penny.

 

 

 

Pros and Cons: 

  • + More Versatile & Mature Tuning compared to the Original Janus
  • + Resolution & Detail Retrieval
  • + Rich Accessory Package
  • + Innovative Dual Socket System
  • + Good Upgarde Cable (BC110A)

 

  • – Lower Midrange Depth & Intensity
  • – Not the most Ideal IEM for Bass Intensive Tracks
  • – Average Isolation

 

 

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