QoA Adonis Hybrid IEM Review

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

QoA Adonis Hybrid IEM Review

 

Introduction:

QOA was established in 2019 as a sister company of Kinera. It continues Kinera’s technology and R&D experience and incorporates its own innovative ideas in the positioning of products. The company has released some products like the Pink Lady, Mojito and Vesper.

QoA: http://www.qoa-audio.com/

The QoA Adonis that I will now review for you is a Triple Hybrid Driver IEM with 1 x Knowles BA & 1 x QoA Custom BA + QoA Custom Dynamic Driver. It is made with UV Print faceplate and a shell that is CNC machined from birch wood. The Japanese singer May’n was chosen as ambassador for Adonis, while the final product was completed after having her choose a preferred sound from several samples and reflecting her opinions on the design.

 

Disclaimer:

I would like to thank QoA for providing me the Adonis sample for review purposes. I am not affiliated with QoA beyond this review and these words reflect my true and unaltered opinions about the product.

 

 

Availability:

 The price tag of the QoA Adonis IEM is around $180,00USD and is now available in Japan and on some Online Stores like AliExpress; more information’s can be found under the links below;

  

 

Package and Accessories:

The QoA Adonis came in a very stylish box with the some brandings on the top and prodcut details at the bottom.

 

This box is including the following contents/accessories; 

  • 1 pair x QoA Adonis In-Ear Monitor
  • 1 piece x Detachable Cable with 2-Pin Connectors
  • 3 pairs x Blue Silicone Ear Tips
  • 3 pairs x Black Silicone Ear Tips
  • 1 pair x Foam Ear Tips
  • 1 piece x Protective PU Carry Case
  • 1 piece x Some Print Material

 

When you open the cover of the box you will see the Adonis that is placed in a removable foam pad which offers a very nice first appearance.

The QoA Adonis comes with a Luxurious PU leather case in the same blue colour like the Adonis IEM’s and has the QoA brand logo on the top. The case shows a high quality workmanship and is a very nice addition.

The Adonis came with 6 silicone ear tips (S/M/L size) that are placed in to the foam later of the box. 3 pairs are in blue, while the other 3 pairs are in black colour. 1 pair of foam ear tips was inside the case.

I really like the presentation of the box and all of the accessories which are carefully chosen and placed in to those boxes.

 

 

 

Design, Fit and Build Quality:

The Adonis is a beautiful looking In-Ear Monitor with an enclosure (the part that fits in the ear) that is made of CNC machined pure birch wood material.

The faceplate on the other hand is made of UV coated resin material that sports the Adonis logo on the top.

The design was chosen by the Japanese singer May’n, which is the ambassador for Adonis and that reflects the opinions of the singer.

On the top of the rear part (enclosure) is the sound nozzle which has two openings, one for the BA (Balanced Armature) Drivers and one for the 10mm diameter custom DD (Dynamic Driver).

At the back side of the enclosure is the vent for the dynamic driver.

On the top of the monitor shell is the 0.78mm diameter 2-Pin female connector that offers a tight and secure connection.

The build quality and the esthetics that is offered are of high quality especially considered the price tag.

The QoA Adonis comes with a 2-Pin detachable cable with a braided design with a soft insulation that shows only a very low amount of microphonic effect. The detachable cable is made of 8core high purity Silver Plated Cooper material.

The 2-Pin connectors have metal housings with left and right color indicators. The cable sports on both sides flexible ear guides, which offers extra comfort.

It features also a metal y-splitter in silver color and the plastic chin slider that made of transparent plastic material.

The 3.5mm Single Ended headphone plug is gold plated, which is protected with a straight profiled metal housing in silver color that has the QoA brand logo on the top. Near the metal housing is a flexible plastic strain relief for extra protection.

 

  

 

 

Fit and Comfort:

The monitor shell of the QoA Adonis has a semi custom shape and offers a very comfortable fit for my medium sized ears. This makes it an ideal IEM for long listening periods. The isolation of the Adonis is on a sufficient level for the use in public transport like metro, bus or train.

 

 

Technical Specifications: 
  • Driver Configuration   : 2 BA’s (1x Knowles + 1x QoA Custom) + 1x QoA 10mm Custom DD
  • Frequency response   : 20Hz ~ 20kHz
  • Sensitivity                   : 113 dB +/- 2dB
  • Impedance                 : 21 Ω
  • Cable Material            : 8 Core Silver Plated Copper Wire
  • Connector type          : 0.78mm Diameter 2-Pin Connector
  • Plug                            : 3.5mm TRS Gold Plated
  • Cord length                : 1.2 m

 

 

Drivability:

The QoA Adonis is a quite efficient IEM with a relative low impedance of only 21Ω and a sensitivity of 113dB which makes it compatible with relative weak sources like Smartphone’s, Tablet’s and DAP’s with weak amplification.

 

 

Equipment’s used for this review:
  • IEM’s              : QoA Adonis, MEE Audio MX4 Pro, Campfire Audio Comet
  • DAP&DAC’s   : Sony WM1Z, iBasso DX220 MAX, FiiO M11 Pro, Samsung Galaxy S9plus

 

 

Albums & tracks used for this review:

  • Casey Abrams – Robot Lovers (Spotify)
  • Barry White – Just The Way You Are (Flac 24bit/48kHz)
  • Isaac Hayes – Walk On By (Flac 16bit/44.1kHz)
  • Sting – Englishman in New York – (Flac 24bit/48kHz)
  • Elton John – Rocket Man (Flac 24bit/96kHz)
  • Eric Clapton – Wonderful Tonight (Flac 24bit/96kHz)
  • Chopin – Nocturn No. 20 In C-Sharp Minor (Flac 16bit/44.1kHz)
  • Sonya Yoncheva – (Giuseppe Verdi) II Trovatore, ActI (Flac 24bit/44kHz)
  • Edith Piaf – Non Je Ne Regrette Rien (Flac 24bit/48kHz)
  • Diana Krall – So Wonderful (DSF)
  • Aretha Franklin – I Say a Little Prayer (Flac 24bit/96kHz)
  • Fazıl Say – Nazım Oratoryosu (Live) (Flac 16bit/44.1kHz)
  • Vivaldi – Le QuarttroStagioni “The Four Season” (Tidal Hi-Fi)
  • Otto Liebert& Luna Negra – The River (Spotify)
  • Gogo Penguin – Raven (Flac 16bit/44.1kHz)
  • Armin Van Buuren – Vini Vici (Flac 16bit/44.1kHz)
  • Lorde – Royal (Flac 24bit/48kHz)
  • Massive Attack – Angel (Flac 24bit/192kHz)
  • Twerl – Lishu (Spotify)
  • U2 – Sunday Bloody Sunday (Flac 16bit/44.1kHz)
  • Portishead – The Hidden Camera (MP3 320kpbs)
  • Metallica – Sad but True (Flac 24bit/96kHz)
  • Megadeth – Sweating Bullets (Tidal Hi-Fi)
  • Rush’s – Leave That Thing Alone (Flac 16bit/44.1kHz)
  • Slayer – Angel of Death (Spotify)
  • Tom Player – Resonace Theory “Album” (Tidal Hi-Fi)
  • Liquid Tension Experiment 2 – Acid Rain (Spotify)

 

 

 

The Sound:

The QoA Adonis is a very lively and highly transparent sounding In-Ear Monitor with a slightly warmer than neutral tonality that shows a tad of coloration. The bass response is linear and fast, the midrange is vivid, smooth and detailed, while the upper midrange is nicely highlighted and the treble area extends pretty well.

This review is written after a burn-in period of 50 Hours. I have used the stock cable and blue silicone ear tips which are included to the package.

Bass:

The bass of the QoA Adonis is produced by the 10mm diameter Custom Dynamic Driver and shows a mildly warmish tonality. The subbass depth and extensions is pretty good, while the quantity and rumble is not too much or nor overdone, it is controlled and doesn’t sound overwhelming.

The subbass character will satisfy most listeners while listen to a wide variety of genres, however the character and rumble may not ideal who are looking for a subbass response that is on a basshead level. For example some of my reference songs like Lorde’s “Royals”, Gogo Penguin “Raven” and Photek’s “The Hidden Camera” did show a pretty good level of depth and intensity, which I quite enjoyed.

The midbass on the other hand are hits pretty punchy, without any noticeable midbass hump that could ruin the overall presentation. The midbass quantity and pressure is on a good level while the final hits are pretty impactful and distinct.

The general bass speed of the QoA Adonis is above average and can easily handle genres that need a fast bass presentation form Jazz and Metal up to Pop and Rock Music.

Instruments such as bass guitars do sound pretty natural, while electro guitars are bright and soft. Other instruments like cross drums on the other hand are nicely pronounced, while snare drums are shown with a fairly tight bass response.

 

Midrange:

The QoA Adonis has a highly transparent, natural and very clean midrange presentation, which shows a mildly warmth and low amount of coloration, that does avoid a dry or too analytical presentation.

Vocals:

The lower midrange of the QoA Adonis shows moderate depth and intensity, while I would wish a tad more body for male vocals, which would be perfect. Male vocals do sound detailed and lively and doesn’t show negative conditions like muddiness or mixings.

Female vocals on the other hand are the area where the Adonis truly shines. Epic vocals from Aretha Franklin to Diana Krall, from Edith Piaf up to soprano voices like Sonya Yoncheva do sound very musical, lively and emotional. The Adonis shows an above average performance in terms of detail retrieval, control and transparency thanks to the pronounced and well tuned upper midrange character.

Instruments:

The general instrument tonality of the QoA Adonis is neither analytical nor too dry and shows a slightly warmer than neutral tonality with sufficient level of body. The Adonis offers a detailed instrument presentation with good level of clarity and separation. Instruments like guitars are lightly warm but a bit bright towards the top end. Other instruments like pianos are pretty soft, and fairly bright in tonality, without to show any negative situations like over-brightness or sharpness.

 

Upper Midrange & Treble:

The upper midrange of the QoA Adonis is highlighted and detailed especially for an IEM at this price tag. The transitions are surprisingly controlled for such a pronounced upper midrange tuning that is mainly focused around the 3 kHz region. The presentation in this area is lively, soft and balanced with everything from female vocals to violins and woodwind instruments.

The lower treble range of the Queen of Audio Adonis offers a good level of extension and adds a nice sense of clarity and definition to the overall presentation. This area is detailed, energetic without being harsh or fatiguing, which I really enjoy while listen to female vocals or sting instruments and pianos.

The upper treble region is concentrated around the 8 kHz region, while the intensity drops right after this area in a controlled manner. The upper treble extension is on a sufficient and shows also a good level of airiness and sparkle. Instruments like hi-hats in metal music are slightly recessed, while the hits are countable and the extension is on a sufficient level. Crash cymbals and snare drums on the other hand do sound pretty controlled, while the extension is on a moderate level.

I do really like the balanced and controlled treble tuning of the Queen of Audio Adonis which is technical pretty successful from soprano voices to treble intensive instruments like pianos, hi-hats or cymbals.

 

Soundstage & Imaging:

The Queen of Audio Adonis offers enough air and space for a fairly precise placement and separation of instruments and vocals and shows an efficient performance in terms of both, soundstage depth and wideness for a product at this price range.

 

 

 

Some Short Comparisons:

 

QoA Adonis versus Campfire Audio Comet:

Both the Campfire Audio Comet and the QoA Adonis do offer a mildly V shaped sound signature with slightly boost in the lows and the highs.

The subbass region of the Campfire Audio Comet is slightly more pronounced compared to the QoA Adonis, which makes it more successful with in bass heavy tracks, while do I prefer the more linear character of the QoA Adonis. The midbass of the Comet offers slightly more impact and depth, wile the Adonis is superior in terms of speed, control and tightness in this area.

The midrange of the QoA Adonis sounds more natural and clear, compared to the Comet that has in general a slightly warmer tonality. The QoA Adonis has the upper hand in terms of clarity and detail retrieval, thanks to the well tuned boost in the upper midrange region.

The Comet offers slightly better depth and intensity in the lower midrange area, which gives it an advantage while listen to male vocals. The Adonis on the other hand is the clear winner while listen to female vocals thanks to the well pronounced upper midrange and treble tuning.

The upper midrange and lower treble region of the QoA Adonis sounds more highlighted and detailed, along with a better level of extension, while the Comet sounds more relaxed and polite in this area.

The QoA Adonis sounds in general more airy and spacious and has the upper hand in terms of soundstage wideness, while both do show a close performance when it comes to the depth of the stage.

 

 

 

QoA Adonis versus MEE Audio MX4 Pro:

The MEE audio MX4 Pro has a close to neutral and fairly balanced presentation. The subbass is slightly pronounced, the midbass are linear, the midrange is close to the listener and pretty transparent, while the upper midrange and treble region is emphasized but controlled.

The subbass and midbass regions of the MEE Audio MX4 Pro shows slightly more depth and intensity compared to the QoA Adonis which is superior in terms of speed and control. The Adonis offers better clarity and detail retrieval compared to the MX4 Pro that is otherwise pretty good in this area.

The midrange of the MEE Audio MX Pro has a warmer tonality and is also slightly more upfront compared to the QoA Adonis, which shows a more neutral presentation. The Adonis has the upper hand in terms of transparency, crispiness and detail retrieval.

The MX4 Pro is more successful with male vocals due to the lower midrange depth and body, while the Adonis is superior with female vocals that do sound more lively, detailed and airy.

Both IEM’s are successful in terms of upper midrange and treble performance. The upper midrange and treble transitions of the MX4 Pro are a bit more controlled, while the Adonis offers a better level of extension, speed and overall detail retrieval.

Both In-Ear Monitors are successful in terms of separation and placement of instruments and the vocals. The soundstage performance of both IEM’s is pretty close when it comes to the wideness, while the Adonis has the slightly edge for the depth.

 

Conclusion:

The Queen of Audio (QoA) offers with the Adonis IEM a great unboxing experience thanks to the beautiful packaging and very esthetic wooden shell that was chosen by the Japanese singer May’n. But that’s not all; the Adonis offers also a good sound performance with its pretty detailed and musical presentation, along with good level of clarity and transparency. All of these features do make the Adonis to an IEM that will surely appeal to your eyes as well as your ears.

 

 

Pros & Cons:

  • + Fast & Controlled Bass Response
  • + Midrange Performance (Clarity, Detail)
  • + Treble Extension and Sparkle
  • + Great Unboxing Experience & Beautiful Wooden Monitor Shell

 

  • – Not Ideal for Bass Heavy Genres
  • – Lower Midrange Depth

 

Thank you for the Read!

 

 

 

 

 

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