AAW Halcyon Review

AAW Halcyon

Today we’re taking a look at the upcoming AAW Halcyon. It’s their latest $1,399 USD tri-brid C/IEM.

Disclaimer: AAW provided the Halcyon free of charge. I only had to pay to import the final product into Austria. AAW is not affiliated with Headfonia and not a site advertiser. Many thanks for the generosity and opportunity.

 

About Advanced AcousticWerkes:

Advanced AcousticWerkes is a Singaporean brand of custom and universal In Ear Monitors. They have been around for a little while already. Their W900 hybrid monitor has been very popular especially.

Key products of theirs are the A2H – which was one of the first hybrid CIEMs, the W500, the W900 as well as Nightingale and Canary.

We have covered their latest models just a couple of months ago. If you want to find out how Canary and Nightingale sound, I suggest you check out their respective reviews.

Their line-up consists of many hybrid designs and AAW has been pushing them a lot since their launch. Earlier in 2019, AAW has introduced their first ever triple hybrid model – the Canary. In late October of 2019 they have launched their second tri-brid – the Halcyon, wich we’ll review today.

About Halcyon:

Halcyon is AAW’s second tri-level hybrid. It uses a dynamic driver for lows, two Balanced Armatures for mids and a quad-setup of electrostatics for the treble. Halcyon is one of the first models to use Sonion’s newest quad e-stat. Unlike before, these use only one transformer, as they are easier to drive.

Halcyon has an impedance of 24 Ohms and a rated sensitivity of 104 decibels. That in theory makes Halcyon moderately easy to drive. But in my experience hybrids need the right amplification to sound their best. It’s not about power, heck, even my phone can power them, but rather the right source. We’ll check out some good ones in the Sources section later on.

AAW Halcyon

AAW Halcyon

One thing AAW has only implemented after I received my sample is a control-module for the dynamic driver. With this module you can change the space behind the low-end driver and hence alter the response of the DD. My sample has a fixed full seal for most sub-bass. AAW will offer other options that the customers can swap easily. Think of it like Jomo’s ACU system, but with a push/pull principle rather than screwing it in.

Halcyon will be officially launched late April this year, if the Corona Virus allows it. It’s going to retail for 1,399 USD in universal and 1,599 in custom shape. Halcyon can be bought through AAW’s retail channels or by ordering directly from them. It is not yet on their website, but will be once launched.

Custom Build Choices (Personalization):

AAW recently came up with their first visual designer for their ciems which helps you with your personalization. You get a wide set of different shell and faceplate colours, as well as special designs that AAW seems to have invested considerable time in the past.

I didn’t get to pick a custom design for my set, as AAW wanted to use the same design they used for their prototypes. Personally, I find it okay. It’s not a design I’d have picked myself, but it looks good to me.

AAW Halcyon

AAW Halcyon

Package:

My Halcyon came with the exact same packaging and accessory set as my Canary. You get a blue pleather case, that’s big enough to store your IEMs, a DAP and even something extra. I use these cases for storage at home and find them very neat. I have three of them already. One for DAC/amps, one for cables and one for DAPs.

Also in the package is a flight adaptor, a cleaning tool and cloth, a 6.3 mm adapter and the Tiburon cable for your Halcyon. I did inquiry a 2.5 mm balanced cable for my review set and this is what I got. The cable itself is nicely flexible and shows excellent build quality in my opinion.

The presentation of Halcyon is very good, and I wish some other manufacturers would take note here. This is how you show your customers what they paid for.

More on page two!

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A daytime code monkey with a passion for audio and his kids, Linus tends to look at gear with a technical approach, trying to understand why certain things sound the way they do. When there is no music around, Linus goes the extra mile and annoys the hell out of his colleagues with low level beatboxing.

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