Design & Build Quality
Aesthetically, the new FiiO FD7 is a darker FD5, plain and simple.
Unlike the FH7 or FH3, the main body isn’t made of aluminum nor magnesium. Instead, FiiO used a solid block of stainless steel, carefully carved through the same 5-axis CNC-milling process. If the FHx models were the only models enjoying a matte black finish, this isn’t the case anymore and the black tinted FD7 looks even more stunning in real life.
No wave-like ripples this time, but a new faceplate that’s supposed to evoke “majestic mountains” and “wondrous waterfalls”. I’m still a bit dubious about that, but either way, I find the FD7 absolutely gorgeous, and all my colleagues favored this design over the glossy FD5.
Again, those shells are reasonably big, same size as the FD5, but FiiO did a great job here. Even with their heavyweight, I never felt annoyed by them over long listening sessions. Once you’re wearing them, they behave like any other modern IEM.
But we’ll see that at a later time, for now, let’s just say that’s one very cool IEM and keep moving on with our review.
Unsurprisingly, the FiiO FD7 build quality is top-notch, like all FiiO’s recent models.
The MMCX port fits perfectly, even a bit too much, but you have the MMCX removal tool for that. There is no gap wherever your hand can touch, no shards or misplaced elements, and the smoothness of the shell gives a good level of comfort.
Of course, that shell being made of stainless steel, the FD7 is immensely robust. Apart from the FA9, the sole acrylic-IEM of the catalog now, those IEM will easily withstand the stand of time. My only fear would be if the glossy finish scratch, but after a few weeks of use, that never happened.
Finally, let’s talk about the new cable. If the FD5 was already a definitive improvement compared to the previous one with the LC-RE, the FiiO FD7 goes even further. Why? Because not only does the FD7 enjoy the swappable terminations system, FiiO also raised the bar by going full silver. In fact, the new cable is now made of 224 wires of pure silver, braided together in 4 strands to make one thick cable.
And like the FiiO FD3 Pro and FD5 you can still switch between 3.5/2.5/4.4mm, and keep the same exact cable. It’s a 30 seconds process, involving no tool and just a light twist, thanks to some clever engineering.
So yeah, it doesn’t get better than that. Let’s check how they fit in the ears.
In the ears
At first, I was set back by the shape, but the FiiO FD7 was surprisingly comfy.
If the FD5 came with two different shaped sound tubes, small or big, FiiO’s flagship adds one more size. If the black and green tubes share the same diameter, the new green one is narrower and should be used with triple-flange tips, for deeper insertion. I tried it and was impressed by how tight the seal could get, but some might get uncomfortable by how deep those tips can go.
And if the FD7 remains a tad less comfy than the FA9, with the right tips, it completely filled my ears. Yes, the latter remains comfier – I still prefer acrylic over metal – thanks to the semi-custom design, but it’d be unfair to flag the FD7 as “uncomfortable”.
Obviously, with a semi-custom design, isolation isn’t the FD7 forte. Even if, to my surprise, the new design seems a little more impervious to outside noises than before.
They performed well in noisy environments like the train but fell short when it comes to human voices. If someone were to talk relatively loud near you, you’ll fill like a part of the discussion, music magnifying every word they could say.
Still, it’s much better than I expected: once you play your music at a moderate level, the IEM will be able to cover most unwanted noises. That might be the thick shell but, most of the time, it just works.
So, time to check the specs!
The review continues on Page Three, after the click HERE or by using the jump below.
Page 1: Fiio overview
Page 3: Specifications, Bundle
Page 4: Sound part 1,
Page 5: Sound Part 2 + Conclusion