The treble sounds well articulated for the price, which is brighter than the FH5 overall. Though, it’s not edgy or aggressive in any way, even forgiving sometimes. I wouldn’t say this is an extremely detailed and supreme treble performance, but it has good air and extension compared to the FH5.
Once again, FiiO have gone with a different route compared to the FH5. The FH7 is crisper and more open in treble, with good sparkle and detail. I found the positioning of the treble very good in the stage with good realism and definition. Overall the treble is precise (not like new electrostatic drivers in TOTL range of course) and nicely pronounced. I can say it’s not that forgiving like the FH5, which necessitates a good quality source.
The most obvious features of the FH7 in terms of technical achievement are the tonality, resolution, transparency and separation, compared to the previous model. It has a nicely rounded soundstage as well, which feels like a conference room. It doesn’t have great width or depth, but to me it’s ideal and reasonable for the price level. One could wish a little wider stage, but it’s still pretty good as it is.
However the FH7 certainly feels more open and airy to the FH5, which creates a better stereo image. It’s easier to pick out the instruments and vocals as a result. The background is blacker and the elements are sharper overall. The FH7 has good layering as well. The sound has very good texture and resolution.
As I mentioned, the FH7 has 3 types of nozzle filters to use. These don’t make a massive difference in response to me, but I will mention them shortly:
The already attached nozzles are black, which are the standard “reference” sound filters. I personally liked this presentation the most, and preferred to use the FH7 with these filters. However, you can use the red filters if you seek a warmer and full bodied sound, especially if you liked the FH5 model. The sound becomes a little less bright and the lows have a bit more kick.
The green filters add more definition and air to the treble area, which works well for Classical and Jazz recordings. I especially liked to hear those cymbals with Miles Davis’ Kind of Blue album, so if you’re a Jazz fan, you probably will like the green ones. Yet, the treble is not piercing with these filters so that’s very good. Other frequencies are not affected.
The reference nozzles, like I said, have the best balance in terms of reference sound. But FiiO have done this filter solution very well. The filters don’t have a huge effect in sound. It’s almost like studio monitors. Remember the switches behind those speakers? Yes, these nozzles work just like that in my opinion. They’re there just for fine tuning for your genres and preferences.
The tips affect the overall sound as well, and it works just like it was with the FH5. You have bass, vocal and balanced tips together with bi-flange and foams. You also have spinfit tips which don’t affect the sound to me really. But your experience with these tips may vary, since the seal changes with everyone’s ears. If you don’t get a good seal, you might not get a good bass response which can affect your judgement about the tips in the package.
Bass tips give more rumble to the low end, and slightly roll off the treble area. Vocal tips perform the same in terms of bass as the balanced tips, but the mids are a bit more forward and accentuated, especially in upper area, which sounds more intimate. However, physically I got the best seal with these tips since they’re more flush fitting. But from the sound standpoint, my choice is the balanced tips. The vocal tips add some brightness in the lower treble area as well, which sounds unnecessary to my ears.
Foam tips affect the sound in a traditional way. The sound becomes a little more forgiving and slightly darker with treble becoming a little softer. Of course, the seal and isolation is better and you may reach a good bass response because of that.