ThieAudio Ghost Review

ThieAudio Ghost Review

ThieAudio is mainly known for its great range of IEMs, but they’ve made some headphones in the past. When I tried the Wraith a while ago, I was impressed with what this IEM brand could do with a full-sized, open-back headphone. Now they have another open-back headphone with a new spooky name and a more economical price. The ThieAudio Ghost costs only $129, so let’s see if they can keep their momentum with their headphones.

What You Get

  • Ghost open-back headphones
  • Zipper carrying case
  • Detachable 3.5mm cable
  • Quarter-inch adapter.

ThieAudio Ghost headband

Look & Feel

With the Wraith, you had a pretty sizable headphone with a hard metal body. It was an industrial design, and the Ghost finds a way to take that style a step down while keeping the headphones from looking cheap. The Ghost is a smaller headphone, but retains a rigid frame. The earcups and grilles have plastic materials, but the gold lining surrounding the grille makes the aesthetic pop. Everything feels well supported, and features comfortable headband and earpad padding. When worn, there is a bit of a clamp to them, akin to the feeling of wearing the Sennheiser HD 600 series headphones.

ThieAudio Ghost above

Design

The Ghost has a 40mm sapphire dynamic driver, whose diaphragm is made of a ceramic metal composite known as cermet. It’s layered on a thermoplastic polymer film stabilizer. This design aims to give the Ghost a better transient response, as well as a stronger magnetic flux thanks to an N52 magnet. You can use the Ghost with any headphone output.

ThieAudio Ghost side

Soundstage

If there’s one thing for certain about the Ghost’s soundstage, it’s incredibly full and engulfing. When you listen to the Ghost, your entire headspace feels like it’s surrounded by sound, with no space being left unfilled. This can lead to some issues with separation, as not every instrument feels breathable, but the Ghost keeps its depth and directionality. Stereo imaging is kept accurate and easily distinguished, all while expanding the soundstage to a non-linear sound field. Sounds come from left and right with precise positioning, but they have the proper dimension and height to also feel like they’re coming from above, diagonally and vertically. You get a natural semi-holographic effect here, and it makes the presentation of your tracks through the Ghost that much more immersive.

Low End

To put things into perspective, the Ghost sound’s a lot like a more relaxed version of the Sennheiser HD 660s in its bass. It shares its warm timbre and controlled, clear frequency content, but the Ghost takes a backseat when it comes to delivering a punch. Everything about the Ghost’s bass feels stable and well-shaped, it just doesn’t have a significant edge to it. While you can easily perceive a lot of the tone, it’s a very slow response. There’s some good detail in the sub-bass, but don’t expect the Ghost to give you a lot of vibrating texture. This is still a very polished bass, and it gives you more than enough satisfying grooves to engage with, even if it’s not the most theatrical response.

Mids

In the midrange, the Ghost doesn’t do anything out of the ordinary for a warmer headphone timbre. Most of its identity is in the low-mids and doesn’t push far beyond that region. I never felt that instruments sounded boring, but you don’t get a lot of flavor to them either. Everything just feels too relaxed, with the Ghosty only offering a surface level of detail to bite on.

Highs

There are areas of the Ghost’s treble that really wowed me. I’m very surprised by just how much detail these headphones were able to handle. The Ghost takes a lot of high-end frequency content and outputs them with clear organization and stability. These frequencies can get pretty hot, but the limit that it exercises on harsh and piercing tones makes it so the timbre always softens up. Sometimes there’s a blissful ring to some of the frequencies, and other times they add a smooth sheen that tails off the ends of certain sounds.

Summary

With the ThieAudio Ghost, you get an affordable open-back headphone that is sure to please fans of big imaging and warmth. There are definitely some flaws with its sound signature, but overall it is a very enjoyable experience. The Ghost works best as an entry-level open-back headphone, which might undervalue it a bit, but it still stands on its own as a worthy selection from ThieAudio’s growing library.

ProsĀ  Cons
  • Semi-holographic soundstage
  • Warm timbre
  • Colorful highs
  • Good build for the price
  • PriceĀ 
  • Some frequencies ranges are too soft
  • Clamping ear cups

The ThieAudio Ghost is available from Linsoul and Audio46.

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Alex S. is a sound designer and voice-over artist who has worked in film, commercials, and podcasts. He loves horror movies and emo music.