The company Lear in the past have pleased lovers of quality sound headphones, perfectly combines the price and quality, it is worth remembering at least their AE1d. Not alien to them were experiments that resulted in the headphones surround sound NS-U1. The last time I watched the news, but it’s time to fix it, today we talk about a hybrid model Lear Kaleido.
If to judge “on spec”, the headphones are quite typical: three emitter, dynamic woofers and a pair of reinforcing on the midrange and treble, specially designed three-band electronic crossover and acoustic low cut filter to make it all work together… the Main interest here is what I did headphones in Lear because they know how to surprise and sound, and price. The latter, incidentally, turned out very affordable, generic version costs about $ 216, custom $ 40 more expensive, which is also quite accessible, if you decide to go the “difficult way”.
- Emitters: 7 mm dynamic + 2 x balanced armature
- Frequency range: 10 Hz – 20 kHz
- Impedance: 10Ω @ 1 kHz
- Sensitivity: 109 dB/mW
- Cable: removable, with MMCX connectors
- Plug: 3.5 mm TRS
Packing and delivery
Box have Lear enough standard, black thick cardboard, low printing. Inside, of course, there are headphones, a convenient “Bank” of plastic with soft-touch effect for storage, cable, four pairs of silicone ear tips of different sizes, a pair of foams and cloth to care for Kaleido.
In General, without any frills, but everything you need is here, and complete “bancofrances” is very convenient in daily use.
Design and comfortable wearing
That appearance is the main feature of Kaleido. In Lear rightly decided that they need to stand out, and made for this model is very stylish faceplate justifying the model name. Multicolored shimmering pieces of foil (that’s where it goes old rain trees) give your headphones a bold look, but still manage to look dirty.
In the rest of the Kaleido — a fairly standard model: housings made from acrylic in the style of “a universal version of the custom bikes”. The housing is made anatomical in shape, with the right corner of the sound channel and compact enough size they normally get in the ears of almost any size. Soundproofing is slightly below the average for the form factor, but for public transport, and just the bustling streets.
If suddenly the basic version of the design is something you do not like it, it offers plenty of options for customization (different color shells, unusual faceplate), but it will have to pay a little extra.
Of course, Kaleido equipped with a replaceable wire. In this case, using MMCX connectors, and here, perhaps, lies the main ergonomic drawback of this model. The fact that used on the wire by default, the connectors are large enough, and a typical behind-the-ear fit for wearing cable protrudes forward too. Fortunately, regular leads provided by the sites of memory foam, so cool they are turning down, it is possible to ensure proper fixation of the wire. The cable is good in quality and durability, but tough enough, that there is an easy MIC effect, but it almost completely eliminates behind-the-ear wearing.
Overall, I would Kaleido immediately ordered additional wire is softer, but their selection is great, and the price is affordable.
To listen following equipment was used.
- Yulong DA9 and Resonessence Labs Concero HP in the role of DAC and amplifier
- Apple MacBook Pro Retina 2016 as the source
- Fidelia in the role of player
- Lotoo PAW Gold, theBit OPUS#2, Astell&Kern, A&ultima SP1000 and the role of other portable players
- Recording high-resolution Lossless-formats (Dr. Chesky have The Ultimate Headphone Demonstration Disc and others)
Before listening headphones were heated for 72 hours.
In making Kaleido slightly spaced from the sound of “typical” hybrids (the accented bass + bright and detailed mid/treble), Lear decided to make them softer and more comfortable, having a model for those who do not like sharp and aggressive midrange. Of course, it comes complete with a V-shaped frequency response with emphasis on bass and treble.
Bass in Kaleido is not the fastest, but not slowest, it has a nice weight, but not lubricated and normally transmits texture. The bass has a decent (but not transcendent) depth hlestkost a little sacrificed for the sake of massiveness, but without much inflection.
The middle is expected for headphones with a V-shaped frequency response, laid by the wayside, and sometimes I would like a little more presence, but in most cases it is still enough. Of course, this is not a model for the lovers of contrast, they play more at the macro level, although in most cases the permission of the midrange enough. The V-shaped frequency response headphones do a good job with the construction of an imaginary scene (and this despite the accented bass), vocals slightly extended forward on the background instruments, which creates the effect of separation. The width of an imaginary scene somewhere in the middle, but the instruments are transmitted reliably.
Treble is slightly accentuated, they are bright and festive, but not overly, for my taste, probably not. For RF sensitive people headphones probably won’t fit, but for the other listeners “top” there will be quite harmonious, in spite of the simplicity of the attenuation and separation of layers, resolution treble are fine, and they do their role of a balancer bass. In General the upper half of the frequency response here is characterized by enjoyable for this price range natural.
In this price range offhand I remember one model Dunu Falcon-C, they are more detailed and dry sounding, but their lower midrange sound more lightweight. To do detailed comparisons at this time I will not, Kaleido — enough taste to paint and model comparison in the spirit “is not like” I’m a big sense do not see.
Headphones are very sensitive, low impedance so they can be used with simple sources like mobile phones and tablets. Since the model has tasty flow, top sources it is clearly not necessary, the main thing — that the background noise level was lower, however, due to the nature of the flow, the noise is not emphasized.
Stylistically, of course, the model is best suited for styles that benefit from accentuated bass and edgy treble, but, as always, the main criterion will be subjective preferences of the listener. The quality of the material the model is quite tolerant, somewhere in 5 points on a 10-point scale of “fault-finding”.
Of course, some tracks for example
Marcus Miller — Blast. What could be more common in jazz and headphones with a delicious bass? Of course Marcus Miller! Renowned jazz bassist who worked with a succession of stars from Herbie Hancock to miles Davis, pleased with the solo albums. Well, Kaleido help to open up his works in full: juicy bass and great volume of the rest of the range.
Sade — Smooth Operator. Forgive me, fans of unusual and new, but after hearing this remaster performed Kaleido, I just couldn’t resist, I think, after listening, anyone would understand why. To do this, in General, not necessarily to have themselves IEM, but the result, of course, will be better. Smooth-feed Smooth Operator.
Michael Jackson — Billie Jean. You can refer to the king of pop, his life and work, but the one to take away his not — very nice, just a reference-quality recording. Although given Quincy Jones a different result could be. By the way, in fact this track will clearly not be called primitive or boring, there are wonderful backing vocals, and unusual solo parts with different instruments, appearing and disappearing like a kaleidoscope… to the filing of the heroes of this review, this music is very suitable.
Lear once again released a very unusual but nice sounding model for lovers of slightly softened flow, perfectly suitable for the taste of listening to many styles. Spectacular design and sleek design are additional bonuses of this model.
Buy Kaleido Lear