HiFiMan was founded in 2007 and released the first RE series IEM. The company has produced some of the greatest Audio products in recent history. Today we are looking at the HiFiMan RE-400 In-Ear Monitors. I am using these for more than a month now and this review will capture my views on the performance and durability of these IEMs.
Build Quality of HiFiMan RE-400:
The IEMs features advanced ergonomics for superb fit, Titanium Diaphragm, Neodymium magnet and Oxygen-Free Cable for durability. The housing or the Earpieces are made of Aluminum and are durable. Strain relief on the Earpieces are long and great. The OFC cable on the left meets a Single-button Capsule size mic. The button is clicky and feels durable, it should last you ears. The button is compatible with both Android and iOS device and the sound out of the mic is clean with moderate to low noise, depending upon your environment.
The Wires merges back to a single wire at the “Y” which is hard with good strain relief. The cable then ends at the sturdy looking 3.5mm Male jack. The jack itself is angled and set to 45 degrees which look odd at first but after a while it will grow on you. The total length of the cable is 1.33m.
Accessories with HiFiMan RE-400:
- 1 x Hifiman Re400 In-Ear Monitor
- 7 pairs x Silicone Tips
- 1 x Shirt Clip
- 1 x Carrying Case
The carrying pouch is round and semi-hard kind of case. It has a separation for putting your eartips and stuff but the case seems small for all that stuff. Also, the case came separately, because the retail box is too small to carry all accessories and the case.
HiFiMan RE-400 Sound:
Soundstage in HiFiMan-RE400 is wide and defined, In Metallica’s “Devil’s Dance” the separation on both the guitars is great. The reverb on the Cymbals is very clean and roomy. When listening to the same song from the “S&M” album the energy in the live crowd is ‘Awesome’. I love the sound of these with Adele’s “Live in Royal Albert Hall” album, everything is so live and clean. To be specific the Piano intro in “Set Fire to the Rain” is great, the drums and the guitar part are just there without interfering with each other.
Every small distance in the instruments can be felt with these, but there is a drawback too. The soundstage is wide but not that wide, some live albums feels too much compressed and same goes for studio albums too. Not everything plays well with these IEMs but it is really difficult for you to find a song that these IEMs can not play as they should be.
I will be writing my relflection on both Sub-Bass and Bass in one section as there is not much to be said for HiFiMan RE-400. These are neutral IEMs and a bit too neutral. The Sub-Bass is present but not that much. No Bass frequency is exageratted here. In A R Rehman’s “Chupe Se” the Slap Bass is clear and tight, every note is crisp and on point impact.
The Sub-Bass creeps in very slowly somewhere in the background you can here it. Songs depending a lot on Sub-Bass frequencies will not play well with HiFiMan RE-400 but if you can increase the Bass frequencies using EQ, then you will love these IEMs.
The Bass and Sub-Bass is punchy and clean, this type of bass presence is great for professional use and Audiophiles will love these.
Let’s start with Metallica’s “Black Album”, “The Struggle Within” and “Enter Sandman” are great vocal performances by James and with these IEMs you will feel the urgency and punch in James’ vocals.
Lar’s Drumming is also great in this album particularly in “The Unforgiven”. Every stroke is clean ,punchy and on point. The neutral nature of the IEMs help it to reproduce the Snare strokes with dead accuracy. The helplessness in the protagonist’s voice can be felt clearly here.
Next up is Motorhead’s “Ace of Spades”, Lemmy is one of the best vocalist ever may he rest in peace. His vocals in “Ace of Spades” is just killer, his grungy voice is produced with total accuracy by these IEMs, same goes for any Motorhead song.
Same as the Male vocals, the females were not behind. Adele, Chithra, Kavitha Krishnamurthi, Asha Bhosle, Lata Ji, I listned too all of them and only have one thing to say, just as the male vocals, female vocals were on-point too. They were clean and crisp, in some MP3s the female vocals seemed a bit harsh and artificial but for the Flacs and DSDs the issue was gone.
Like other “Neutral IEMs” these does not add some artificial timbre in the Mid-high frequencies, mainly these frequencies cover Acoustic or stringed instruments. In A R Rehman’s “Lukka Chuppi” the Acoustic Guitar intro is natural sounding. Same goes for Adele’s “Rolling in the Deep”, the Acoustic guitar is perfectly represented.
ACDC’s “Thunderstruck” is also a great song the Angus Young’s Guitar sound so live and rich. Sometimes the highs get a bit too harsh and piercey for my taste and definition in Crash Cymbals is lost. Like in Metallica’s “Wherever I May Road” or Pantera’s “Cowboys to Hell” or in Rage Against The Machine’s “People of the Sun”, rest of the frequencies are on point and clean but the Crash cymbals and Distorted guitars are not represented as they should be.
Overall the Highs represented by HiFiMan RE-400 are not clean sometimes and starts piercing eardrums easily. I think that these issues occurs due to the aluminum casing and a small Dynamic driver.
Our Verdict For HiFiMan RE-400:
For a price tag of less than Rs, 6,000 these are a great IEMs for the people who want a clean and neutral sounding earphones. Competing these will be Meze 12 Classics and FiiO FH1 and all these are great IEMs with Neutral or close to Neutral sound signatures. Build quality for the price is also OK and should last you easily more than a year and a half.
Click here to buy HiFiMan RE-400 from Amazon.