The Fidue A71 is a fun pair of IEMs to listen to. They are quite bass emphasized, making them great for heavy bass listeners. While getting a good fit can be a little time-consuming, they have a fantastic mid-range and offer good value. The build quality is also very solid, so these headphones should definitely last you a long time.
- Good Build Quality
- Great Mid-Range
- Fantastic Value
- Time-consuming to Get a Good Fit
- Not Equally Detailed Across the Frequency Range
Disclaimer: I was provided the Fidue A71 as a review sample from HiFiHeadphones. I am in no way affiliated with HiFiHeadphones - this review is my honest and subjective opinion.
How We Weigh the Ratings
- Sound Quality: 30%
- Comfort: 20%
- Build Quality: 20%
- Isolation: 15%
- Value: 15%
- Driver Unit: 10mm Dynamic Driver & 6.8mm Titanium Dynamic Drivers Inside
- Rated Impedance: 16 Ω (Ohm)
- Frequency Response: 13 Hz – 26 Khz
- Sensitivity: 104 dB
- Cable: 1.3m, Copper
- Plug: 3.5mm Gold Plated
Who They ARE For
- The Heavy Bass Listener
- Those Who Enjoy a Dark Signature
- Those Who Don't Worry About Micro Details in Tracks
Fidue A71 In-Ear Monitors Detailed Review
Packaging & Design
The Fidue A71 arrived in the simple, yet beautiful, box that is pictured below. It's a pretty solid container that does a good job of protecting its contents.
The first thing you'll notice is that it's a two piece box. Removing the lid reveals the the A71 itself, and I must say that I'm liking what I see.
The headphones are placed in hard foam, which significantly reduces the risk of damage. This also tells me that they are serious about the product, which makes a good first impression on me.
While the IEMs themselves are the most important part, everyone loves accessories. With the Fidue A71 we get:
- The Fidue A71 In-Ear Monitors
- The Carrying Case
- 3 Sets of Single Flange Silicone Tips
- 2 Sets of Dual Flange Silicon Tips
- 1 Set of Foam Tips
The carrying case has a good size. It's not as large as some of the other cases out there (e.g. like the Brainwavz case). This makes it a little difficult to place the earphones in the case, but on the flip side it is a lot more comfortable to have in your pocket.
Calling the design not too shabby would be an understatement. The Fidue A71 is a beautiful pair of in-ear monitors.
Both the jack and Y-split are made from a shiny metallic material, which adds some life to the otherwise dull cable.
The earpieces themselves are worn over ear. They have a tiny L or R printed on the inside to indicate the left and right ear. It's not very easy to see, but as they are worn over ear, they'll only fit one way anyway.
They also have a stylish "F" printed on the back. of the housings.
The A71 has a pretty good bass. They have a sufficient amount of both sub- and mid-bass. The lows are tight and full, and the mids are capable of providing a good punch.
They are bass emphasized, which makes them great for modern music like EDM, where you don't need to hear all the fine details in the track.
I wouldn't recommend the A71 for fine listening, as the bass clouds it too much.
The mid-range is very good. They are rich and warm, and exceptionally detailed. Acoustic music comes through great here. Female vocals sound slightly better than male vocals, as the male's sometimes get a bit muffled by the bass.
The treble is non-fatigue, has good extension, and a decent level of detail. Depending on the tips used, the treble can sound a little laid back. It doesn't sound too bright or too dark. It's comfortable to listen to.
Overall, the level of detail of the Fidue A71 is pretty good. They do have a bass emphasis, as advertised, which makes them a fun pair of IEMs for suited types of music. I wouldn't recommend them to someone who enjoys tracks with a lot of fine detail though. The sound signature steers more towards bass heavy music.
As I've mentioned earlier in this review, the Fidue A71 is worn over-ear. While some people swear by it, it has never been a preference of mine. Given that the over-ear vs. below-ear is a matter of preference, I won't spend more time on the subject here.
I was able to get a good level of comfort out of these, but only after spending quite a bit of time on insertion of the earpieces. This is perhaps the biggest issue that I had with them. I enjoy being able to just plug in my IEMs and run out the door, which wasn't the case with the A71.
That being said, when I do take the proper amount of time to place them in my ears (Patience!), I get a really good fit. Additionally, as the cord is worn over the ear, they get a very solid grip.
Now, the build quality is quite good on this pair. The housings are made from solid, black plastic. They are a little larger than what I'm used too, but nothing excessive. The cable leaving the earpieces is a memory cable, designed to wear over the ear, and it has a good amount of strain relief.
The cable itself is covered with a very soft layer of rubber. It feels well built, and doesn't seem to get tangled very easily. A big plus in my book is the low level of microphonics caused by the cable.
Another interesting feature is the Y-split (pictured above). It's made from a metallic material, which is remarkably solid. It has "Fidue" printed on it, and of course it comes with a wire slider.
That brings us to the jack. It's a gold plated, straight jack. There isn't much more to it than that. It too is made from the solid, metallic material, and has rich amounts of strain relief. I'm not worried about it causing me trouble any time soon.
This is a feature that I look for in IEMs. They're my travel companions, so I want to be able to hear them in relatively noisy environments. Unfortunately, I was not able to get a good enough level of isolation from these guys.
I've heard from some other reviewers that they didn't have a problem with the level of isolation. This leads me to conclude that it is dependent on the individual whether or not a good level of isolation can be attained. Because of this, I've chosen to give them 3 stars for isolation, instead of the 2 that I would have given them, as I don't want my silly shaped ears to cloud this review too much.
If you've looked at the price of these, you'll know that they aren't the cheapest pair out there. They are not super expensive by any means, but they aren't exactly cheap either. Nonetheless, the value of a pair of IEMs is measured as a factor of quality to price, and for the Fidue A71, the quality outweighs the price.
How Do They Compare?
Let's look at some of Fidue A71's competition.
Brainwavz S0 - The S0, like the A71, is quite bass heavy - though, the S0 less so than the A71. The isolation is better on the S0, but the cable is worse.
I would recommend the A71 over the S0 for a heavy bass listener, and the S0 for those who enjoy more clarity at the cost of some bass.
Brainwavz M1 - These are tailored toward a different audience than the A71. The M1 has a cleaner sound signature, with a lot less bass. Additionally, they are cheaper than the A71, which adds to their value.
If the Fidue A71 is for the bass lovers, then the S0 is for the in-betweens, and the M1 for the even less bass heavy people. Don't get me wrong here - the M1 is not bass light, it just doesn't have as big a bass emphasis as the Fidue.
JVC HAFX1X - The Fidue A71 is, hands down, a better pair of IEMs than the HAFX1X. So why do I compare the two? One word: Price.
The JVC's are a pair of budget headphones with a powerful bass. So if all you're looking for is a big bass experience, and you aren't willing to pay up - the JVC HAFX1X might be worth your time.
What Other People Say About the Fidue A71
The question is now how to grade this. It is a hidden gem if the bass is dialled back, and would represent real value to me. Today I’ve given these a 3.5 star rating (primarily based on the default signature, and how much it masks natural detail) – but it would easily be 4.5 stars if I didn’t have to EQ these to achieve the sonic signature I prefer. I hope that makes some sense.
Reviewer at Head-Fi.org
I really do like these, Fidue are coming out with some excellent IEM's, these may not have the best ergonomics but they are still comfortable, however the sound really is excellent, you would not know there are 2 drivers in these due to the incredibly coherent sound, from lows to highs there are not major dips or peaks, no flaws that stand out. They could have a little more presence up top, and the mids could be a little more forward, but overall they have a balanced (but on the fuller side) sound which has good detail retrieval without sounding clinical, and the soundstage is very wide.
I would recommend these to anyone that wants good coherent sound that blends together for an easy listening experience with clarity and detail that is not thrown in your face.
Sound Perfection Reviews
The Fidue A71 is a fun, bass emphasized pair of in-ear monitors. While the bass can cloud some of the fine detail in tracks with a lot of micro details, they have an amazing mid-range.
These headphones are not for everyone, simply because of the sound signature. They are tailored toward people who prefer a heavy bass, and overall warm presentation. If this sound signature sounds like something you'd enjoy, then I can absolutely recommend the A71.
The build quality is fantastic on these, and they offer good value for the price. A drawback was the time-consuming process of inserting the earpieces properly. The cable is designed to wear over ear, which - combined with the memory cable - had me spending quite a bit of time getting a comfortable fit.
I like these headphones. They won't be my default pair, since much of my music collection consists of detailed tracks, but I can definitely see myself grabbing them for certain tracks and playlists. They certainly do have a fun and interesting sound signature.