If anything, the Tin Hifi P1 is already on my hand for a while... well, sort of. This planar IEM has created some hype around its release, as expected from the company who has created the hype with the Tin Hifi T2 during the time last year. This hype especially, has lingers long enough at least in the Vietnamese community where I am still seeing people recommending the P1 over and over which has drawn out some curiosity for me. Luckily this time, my friend also went in with the hype so I guess I don't need to empty my pocket for the sake of having a review post :D.
Before going into the post, if you are new, please read this before having any comments regarding my writing or point of view
- Price: 169$
- Driver: Planar
This unit was bought from Xuan Vu Audio, a local audio store in Vietnam
- 6 pairs of silicon tips
- 2 pairs of foam tips
- A leather case
- Unbalanced 3.5mm MMCX cable
- The product itself
The screenshot above seem to miss one pair of silicon tips, but it still help you to get the general idea of what you will get anyway.
Nothing much to say on the silicon tips as usual, Tin Hifi surely provided you a generous amount of tips to fit
almost all kinds of ear possible on man kind. They also included another pair of foam tips which is also an improvement from the Tin Hifi T2. The leather case is also a nice addition to the table as I really like to keep my listening tools tidy on one place for durability and the cable is thick and a little bit stiff, but not a really big problem on my side. Like the Tin Hifi T3, the cable also has a memory silicon near the MMCX jack so sadly, you can only wear this in an over-ear style, not like how the Tin Hifi T2 was.
For the P1 itself, it follows a "triangle" shape build which might have some problem with fit to some people. The build quality is metal so there is no complaint for me although the earphones can be a little bit heavy comparing to other IEMs. A difference from the P1 comparing to the T2, T3 is the nozzle length, which is longer that its predecessor. Still, I still find the nozzle as the most annoying thing on the product as usual.
This should be short to say but I will still separate into its own section anyway. During the time with the Tin Hifi P1, people told me a lot about how much power it needs and I have to spend money on a proper amplifier to pull the sounds of the P1 to its potential.
Sorry, for this statement, I have to disagree. This is after me trying several amps, dacs I can find in Hanoi and listen with them in 2 days and I don't find anything noticeable or different between each device that can proof this statement is true in any regards.
So, for whatever you said about the P1 in terms of power, here is my verdict on it: It doesn't as demanding as people claim it to be. Sure, the P1 is a planar IEM, it needs more juice than other IEMs around its price, but you don't need to spend kilobucks on a powerful amplifier for it to work. If you really want some power, you can just buy the Apple USB-C to 3.5mm dongle and call it a day. At most, if you want to spend money just for the earphone, you will only need the P1 to power it to your comfortable listening volume, not the maximum volume, going over 90 dB then I will pray for your ears. Feel free to hate me in anyway, I have tried and I know, this opinion stands.
While I did stated that I have tried several amps and dacs over my listening session, my usual setup that I often use is still follow: Tin Hifi P1 with stock tips -> Apple 3.5mm to USB-C DAC -> Samsung Galaxy S8 with UAPP
The signature of the Tin Hifi P1 can be describe as neutral, leaning towards the darker/warmer side depending on your interpretation. The sub-bass if blocking the front vent or using foam tips, will still be able to bring out that "rumble" feeling if the song calls for it, removing the mod or using the silicon tips then you will see a noticeable roll off. The mids seem to be tuned well, with no favors leaning towards male or female vocal. As far as I know, Crinacle seem to take a little part in the tuning of the Tin Hifi P1, changing the sound signature that is closer to his preferred target if anything; While it is completely fine for me, I would want a more agressive sounds in the 2k region if possible. The treble is one of the weirdest point of the tuning: It has that roll off presented in IEMs that has a dark signature, but then there is a boost after the 10k region which creates a "tizzing" sounds on cymbals, hi-hat which is audible at my age. There is also that "air" sensation that can going on in the background of the song and again, audible depending on the person who hears it.
While the timbre on the P1 is pretty fine for me, the note transient have a slight problem that is the note has a blunted attack which can be obvious on plucked string instruments. The soundstage of the P1 seem to be one of its biggest problem: There is an obvious congestion on my hearing which affects a lot of songs in the orchestra genre. This also affect imaging, as layers of layers of sounds seem to going on each other that it is hard to point out the position of the instrument on busy tracks. Somehow, I feel like the P1 has worse soundstage and imaging than the Tin Hifi T2 which is already something I have already complained on my review several weeks ago.
I have a mixed feeling on the P1. In a way if I were to choose this between my T2, it will be the former. But then, at the price tag of 169$ comparing to the T2 which can be as cheap as 25$, I feel like the T2 is sufficient enough for your need. With all of the earphones on the market that has similar pricing, I don't really recommend the P1 unless you are really into the hype. Yes, the tuning can be impressive to some people, but I reck on there are better alternatives which has similar or even better than this earphone technicality wise.