Both, Astell&Kern and Campfire Audio are relatively new companies in the world of headphones, but both have quickly established a great reputation, even creating quite a craze among some audiophiles. The Michelle Limited and Campfire Orion are separated by only fifty dollars in price, so the choice between the two is tough. I’ll compare the quality in design and sound to help decide which investment to make.
IN THE BOX
|Michelle Limited||Campfire Orion|
|Michelle Limited Earphones||Campfire Orion In-Ear Headphones|
|Detachable 3.5mm Twisted Cable||Tinsel Earphone Cable – 3.5mm (silver-plated copper)|
|Balanced 2.5mm cable|
|3 x Pair Silicone Ear-tips||3 x Pair Silicone Ear-tips|
|3 x Pair Flex Ear-tips|
|3 x Pair Foam Ear-tips|
|1-Year Limited Warranty||1-Year Limited Warranty|
|Hard Shell Carrying Case||Hard Shell Carrying Case|
|Cleaning Tool||Cleaning Tool|
The Campfire Orion takes a minute to get the right fit if you’re using foam tips. But once it’s in there, it feels snug and secure. The Michelle Limited only comes with silicone ear-tips, but they fit quickly and feel nice and deep.
DESIGN and FEATURES
Overall, the Campfire Orion is a sturdier and heavier build. Campfire has a polymer-ceramic coating that protects the earphone shells, while the Michelle Limited is made from plastic. The cable on the Campfire Orion is also a little thicker and made from a tougher, silver-plated material. If I were to trust the durability of one over the other, it would be the Campfire Orion.
The Campfire Orion has much less of a bass profile than that of the Michelle Limited. In fact, they are worlds apart. The Michelle Limited has a very deep and wide bass sound, while the Campfire Orion is much less pronounced. I would even say that the Campfire Orion is a little lacking in the bass department. It’s missing a little warmth. Some people prefer a tighter bass, and for that I would recommend the Campfire Orion. But if you’re listening to pop and hip-hop, the Michelle Limited is the more appropriate choice.
The problem with both of these earphones is that neither has a particular strong mid-range. But if I had to pick which one I prefer in this range, it would be the Michelle Limited. It’s a little fuller and rounder, and it’s an easier listening experience. Rock and roll sounds better on the Michelle Limited that on the Campfire Orion.
The Campfire Orion is a little too bright. And though there is a little sibilance in the Michelle Limited, the highs are not as overwhelming. Listening to classical music, I would say that the Michelle Limited has a softer feel when it comes to strings, and for me, it’s a more enjoyable listening experience.
I have to say, I really love the soundstage on the Campfire Orion. The Michelle Limited is broad, but the Campfire Orion seems to be a little more accurate. Listening to some of Sting’s live recordings, the placement of instruments felt more realistic on the Campfire Orion than they did on the Michelle Limited.
Overall, the Campfire Orion is a tighter sound. The drums really pop and it feels a little more dynamic. But in comparison to the Michelle Limited, I found the Campfire Orion to be a little harsher. At the end of the day, they are both nice headphones for the price. They just have very different styles. If you’re a bass-head, and interested in a silkier and rounder feel, I would go with the Michelle Limited. If you prefer it dry, then the Campfire Orion might be for you.
|Michelle Limited||Campfire Orion|
|Frequency Range||20 Hz to 17 kHz||10Hz – 16 kHz|
|Impedance||10 Ohm||13.9 Ohm|
|Sensitivity||117 dB||110 dB|
You can find these earphones for the best price at:
Campfire Audio Orion In-Ear Headphones
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