Fearless Audio recently added a new In-Ear Monitor to their Colorful World series, the Provence. At $138, the Provence can be classified as a low to mid-priced IEM, which can be a gamble in terms of quality. Today, I’m going to see how Provence performs.
What’s in the Box
- Fearless Audio Provence IEMs
- 6 additional pairs of Ear Tips
- Carrying case
- Cleaning cloth
- 8 strand ultra-pure oxygen-free copper (OFC) silver-plated Litz cable
Look and Feel
Provence has an interesting design aesthetic. I like the clear housing and the ability to see the inner components, which shows the intricate design of the Provence. Mine has a deep blue backplate with lime green components showing through the clear housing, which isn’t my favorite color scheme, but that’s all a matter of preference. The Provence is on the smaller side and feels especially comfortable as a result.
The Provence is a 1DD2BA hybrid in-ear monitor. The technological highlight of this IEM is the Fearless Special Research Pole-Magnetic Dynamic Driver, which they designed especially to minimize low-end distortion without sacrificing presence. It features a Balanced Armature driver and a two-way crossover to ensure a degree of separation while still preserving the overall blend.
The Fearless Audio Provence has a frequency response of 15 Hz – 20 kHz and an impedance of 19 Ohms.
The Provence has a very nice soundstage and I was impressed with how dynamic it could be. It gives the same level of care to tracks with vastly different spatial mixes, and panning effects felt good, but not overly separated. Dynamics-wise, it can get pretty soft while still presenting all the same information, though it does tend to clip at fairly high volumes. Provence has one of the best soundstages I’ve heard on an IEM of this price range.
There’s a slight boost to the Province’s low end, but in a natural way that facilitates warmth throughout the frequency range. The subs are clear and supportive but can pack a serious punch when the mix calls for it. Often, boosted lows sacrifice blend, but the Provence handles it with such subtlety that it enhances the sound character of the IEMs.
The midrange of the Provence is supportive of the two extremes on the spectrum. There’s a semi-noticeable scoop around 1 kHz, which results in some midrange instruments lacking presence, but not overly so. Lead instruments still cut when they need to and nothing felt harsh or overly resonant. The low-mids add so much texture to the lows and sound rich and separated.
While slightly subdued, the highs still come through clearly. Thanks to the excellent soundstage, the highs have room to create a sense of space and shimmer throughout the mix. While they could have come out a little more at times, they never added harshness, which feels like an intentional tradeoff for the warm, dark character of the Provence.
Coming into this review, I didn’t expect anything remarkable from a pair of $138 IEMs. The Provence exceeded my preconceived expectations. It has its own uniquely rich, warm sound character that I personally love, but may not necessarily be for everybody; it all comes down to taste. If you’re looking for your first pair of IEMs or just want to try something new, the Provence is an excellent choice.