A question I keep asking myself whenever I hear a new pair of inexpensive audiophile earphones, is how low in price could they possibly go? I’ve been checking out a lot of ChiFi IEMs in the past few months, and no matter what price they go for, these earphones always seem to have some impressive fidelity in their sound signature. These types of IEMs have broken a mold in a way that only the more expensive models can have detail and clarity. The Reecho SG-01 might be one of the most affordable earphones of this nature on the market today, costing only $39. Let’s find out if they’re worth the purchase even at their generous price point.
What You Get
Along with the IEMs, you receive a 2-pin detachable cable made of all-metal plating wire. You’ll also find a grey zipper case containing an assortment of ear tips. There are three Ziploc bags of tips that feature unique acoustic properties and precise detail retrieval. They also feature a cool, clear style with multi-color bores, but there are black rubber tips included.
Look and Feel
The outer shell of the SG-01 appears elegant with its solid metal molding and ridged design. Its housing is well-sized, making up a classic shape for a universal fit. You get some unmistakable craftsmanship with the SG-01, adding to its overall solidity. If I had any issue with its design, it’s that the cable just doesn’t feel as well crafted. It is made from some fine components, but the fabric sleeve on the outside doesn’t help the earphone’s level of comfortability. With that, the cavity of the IEM provides an unobtrusive fit, but the spout doesn’t grant much support here. The ear tips fit well on the nozzle and provide an average level of comfort, but its security is a bit too loose for my taste.
Although the SG-01 sports a very low price, it uses some surprisingly high-grade materials to make up the interior of its housing. The SG-01 features a 10mm N50 dynamic driver, with a 6μm graphene diaphragm. With the graphene diaphragm, Reecho aims to deliver a stronger signal with less distortion and more potential for detail.
The width of the SG-01 is large and nicely spaced. Its imaging is narrow but extends its reach far enough to be enjoyable. Although the level of separation and layering has a certain ability well beyond its price, the response is still quite linear. You won’t get a ton of depth to these sounds, but the stereo field is still well-communicated and features a respectable amount of clarity. While the SG-01 exhibits little depth, the sounds still find a way to wrap around you, even if it’s just minimal details. Far from holographic, but the soundstage is still immersive, with sounds appears back and forth in its horizontal space.
Bass frequencies here are not minimal but will be a bit too plain for some. Due to its narrow nature, the lows don’t exactly get the lift needed to resonate into a rumbly, pulsating bass that most listeners enjoy. However, the frequencies here are still very clean and provide some good clarity to the lows. You won’t get the response you want from bass-heavy genres, but other genres will benefit from its neutrality. Too much of the response is reduced for the bass to make any notable impact, but it’s far from a hollow timbre.
Here is where you’re going to get the meatier tonality. While the bass is mostly recessed, the midrange is the complete opposite. It’s rich in texture and exceptionally crisp in certain bands of frequency. More focus is pulled toward the upper mids, but you get a good balance with refined details. As a whole, the mids are smooth and exhibit a rich timbre throughout. Vocals have a good presence, as well as distorted guitars and instrumentals. Tracks like “Blackout” by Lush showcase these qualities with vocals appearing full but not as commanding, letting the reverberant textures properly ring out through the mix.
These ringing details expand into the treble, where the response is even more crisp and airy. Frequencies have a layer of sparkle to them, adding a layer of shine to the overall sound signature. You won’t get any brightness here though, and sibilance is practically non-existent. Only the most universally enjoyable characteristics are shown in the highs. So many sound elements tail off into a blissful resonance, highlighting coloration in vocals and sound effects.
Although the SG-01 has some very good midrange and high-end responses for the price, the competition here is just too competitive in most cases. If you’re on a very strict budget and can’t spend more than a hundred dollars on IEMs, but want something that still has good detail, this is only an okay option. Tripowin and Queen of Audio, and Kinera have good selections in this area too, but it’s also rare that they supply a microphone, which the SG-01 has. It has some of the best trebles in its price range and maybe that’s enough.
Pros and Cons
- Great treble
- Rich midrange
- Solid build
- Ear tip selection
- Mic include
- Loose fit
- Lacking bass
- Narrow soundstage