If you use IEMs a lot, you’ve probably had to place the cable. Whether that be a 2-pin or MMCX cable, IEMs have a ton of options for upgrades. These cables have a hand in holding their own sound elements, and further personalizing your experience with your IEMs. Strauss & Wagner has a new line of cables that looks to do this, with the Essen as one of the best examples. Should you consider this hundred-dollar cable upgrade for your IEMs?
How The Essen Enhances The Sound Of Your IEMs
Whether you’re using high-end or mid-budget IEMs, the Essen gives you its special properties that are easy to point out. I started using the Essen with an IEM I recently reviewed called the X4 from Bellos Audio. The sound signature is a good reference for critical listening and everyday enjoyment, but attaching the Essen makes the impact more significant. The mid-bass is extended to add more fullness to the bass. Its resonance is less tight, but more defined in the mix while still showing balance. Individual notes also feel like they have more of an attack to them, like the striking of piano keys or the plucking of acoustic guitars.
Switching over to the 64 Audio U18t, the main difference I could hear was that the midrange felt smoother and had boosted thickness from the low mids. You still get the pure detail of the U18t, but it’s mixed in with a meatier bass that supplies more lift to the frequency response. The highs are also more textured and glittery, adding height to the soundstage as well.
After trying some higher-end IEMs, I wanted to hear how the Essen could handle something more mid-budget. I connected the Essen to the Moondrop Blessing 3, and the results were better channel separation and better bass clarity. Everything coming through the Blessing 3 appears cleaner when paired with the Essen, and the sound is more refined overall.
Should You Consider The Essen?
For a hundred dollars, the Essen from Strauss & Wagner is a solid upgrade cable that will work for a ton of different IEMs. Any pair of IEMs with a 2-pin connection will benefit in some way with this cable attached to it. There are specific timbral properties that come with the Essen that might not make your IEMs sound exactly the way you want them, but I’m a fan of the few examples that I’ve heard and can’t wait to pair it with others.
The Strauss & Wagner Essen is available at Audio46.