Pros: Comfortable Fit, Build and Aesthetics
Cons: Midrange Tonality, Unforgivably unnatural Tuning
Driver Setup: 4BA (2 Knowles 2 Custom) + 1 DD
Disclaimer: This review set is a demo lent to me as part of a Singapore review tour. This review is written on my own accord and all thoughts and opinions here are my own.
BGVP released a 5-driver hybrid at an eye-catching price of $75. This is a competitive price range, dominated mostly by single dynamic drivers at the moment. The DH5 features a combination of 2 Knowles and 2 Custom Balanced Armature Drivers, complemented by a Beryllium Alloy Dynamic Driver. Let’s see if BGVP can break into this competitive sub $100 bracket.
Accessories (Score: 8/10)
I applaud BGVP’s consistency with providing a pleasant unboxing experience, with all the necessary accessories and more. I really like their zippered hard case and the selection of silicone tips (Bass and Vocal). While not of much importance to me, this is certainly a nice touch to anyone getting their first IEM.
Build Quality and Fit (Score: 8/10)
The build and aesthetics of the DH5 are excellent for the price. It is relatively small-sized for its driver count and has a resin shelled. The cable is really pretty and well-built as well. Everything is looking promising so far. The faceplate sports a playful yet understated rainbow mosaic-like pattern.
The really like the fit. I didn’t get any driver flex and the buds are well-rounded and light, effectively disappearing in the ear once worn.
Sound (Score: 5.0/10)
Frequency Response Graph of the BGVP DH5
- Lotoo Paw S1
- Hiby R5
Music listened to
- Joscho Stephan
- Linkin Park
- Akdong Musician
- Mumford & Sons
- Dyan – Looking for Knives
The bass quantity and quality are decent on the DH5. It has a tasteful punch and a natural decay so that the midbass isn’t too boomy. The amount of bass was just nice to give tunes a nice warmth without overdoing things, and I enjoyed the low end on Dyan’s Looking for Knives. There is little bleed and it was quite pleasant on the low end for what it’s worth.
Mids is really where the music’s soul is at and the DH5 just can’t seem to get it right. Tonality is wayyy off and everything sounds so nasal it’s as though it’s being resonated in a tin can. Vocals are once again nasal, especially female vocals. The presentation in the midrange is awkward as well, with instrumentals and vocals sounding warped with weird imaging.
Treble tonality is quite off although there is a decent amount of extension. The resonance of high hats, cymbals all sound like they’re being played from a tin can. I felt like there was potential as the highs extended well and wasn’t harsh or anything. A wasted potential at that.
It’s really quite a pity that the tonality of the DH5 is so off as it seems to have a good amount of detail retrieval and punch in the bass. However, the warp in tonality is so jarring it’s simply hard to enjoy music as it is. Soundstage is on the intimate side.
VS TinHiFi T3 Plus
Full review of the TinHiFi T3 Plus
This will be a bit of a weird comparison but they happen to both be recent releases I have on my hands at the moment with similar price tags so I’ll just give it a go.
Comparing the BGVP DH5 to other IEMs doesn’t do it any favours, given how competitive this price point has become. Another hot release right now is the TinHiFi T3 Plus. The TinHiFi T3 Plus is slightly cheaper at US$69, with a slightly different driver set-up. It features a single Liquid Crystal Polymer (LCP) Diaphragm Dynamic Driver. It may seem like a weird comparison, but looking at what the T3 Plus manages to accomplish at its price point shows what went wrong with the DH5. The T3 Plus isn’t the most detailed or most impressive-sounding IEM by a long shot. It isn’t the most analytical as well, losing out to IEMs like the Etymotic ER2 at its price point in detail retrieval and accuracy. However, it nails the comfort and fit, which I would say so has the DH5. On top of that, the T3 Plus provides a pleasant and fun tuning, which is extremely versatile and I foresee is appealing to a wide audience with its musical tuning. There are no immediate red flags upon first listening and presents a rather all-rounded performance on all fronts. Comparing the two almost seems like a comparison between a Jack of all trades as opposed to a Jack of no trades.
The DH5 is pretty much of a lemon IEM to me as I find it hard to enjoy most of my music library on it. I don’t think anyone should have to pay US$75 and face such flaws in tonality. This was a project that should be sent back to the drawing board instead of being released. This is a timely reminder of how driver count does not equate to performance. If this was from a $10 IEM, maybe I would find this excusable due to the limitations of what one can achieve while keeping costs down. To those considering the DH5, I suggest sitting this one out.
Overall Grade: D
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