The HiBy Beans is HiBy’s single dynamic driver earphone, selling for $69 USD. It is also budget friendly and it features carbon nanotube diaphragm & 10mm custom DD. It is recommended by HiBy to be in the bundle of R2 & FD1.
Specifications & Technical Data
- Driver type: Dynamic driver with carbon nanotube diaphragm
- Driver diameter: 10mm
- Frequency response: 20-20000Hz
- Sensitivity: 109dB
- Impedance: 32Ω
- Cable: silver-plated OFC
- Cable length: 1.2m
- Connectors: 2-pin 0.78mm, 3.5mm plug.
- MSRP: 69 USD
The HiBy Beans comes in a black cardboard box. The specifications are listed on the back. Upon opening it you see a brilliant carrying case. Full accessories are listed below:
*Silver plated OFC copper 0.78mm – 3.5mm cable.
*3 pairs of tips
Design & Build Quality
Design-wise they look nice. They look like they’re metal but as soon as you touch them, it feels somewhat plastic. Golden accents complement silver very well though. HiBy did not skip the replaceable cable feature and opted for 0.78mm 2-pin sockets instead of MMCX. It is subjective but I like 2-pin better than MMCX due to corrosion issues.
It stays comfortable in my ears however I found out that tips actually play a large role when it comes to Beans. I tried JVC’s spiral dots and they literally murdered the treble region. I stuck to the default tips for this test as they offer a more balanced frequency range. I wouldn’t have thought to say that on the review of a $ 69 headset, but I really liked the included cable. It has literally no microphonics and it is very flexible. Nice work HiBy.
The Beans – Sound
The Beans’ sound signature is warm, it may not be a typical v-shaped one, but it is close. Bass impact is impressive, good whack effect. It is quite fun to listen to EDM tracks. Midbass feels somewhat raw. Midrange is slightly recessed however, vocals seem to preserve their definition. Upper mids are elevated to increase perceived clarity, and it works. Treble is good, it has a good definition to it and offers good clarity. Treble has enough extension and does not get overtaken by any other frequency group.
The width of the staging is adequate however the depth did not impress me as much as width. Although this depends on the source, I found out that it got quite big when I plugged it into a 500 USD Element II stack, haha! Overall note thickness is alright, it does not feel tinny at all. HiBy tuned it to be a crowd pleaser but drivers are more than capable of flatter tuning.
I played around with it via HiBy R2’s MSEB Parametric EQ and the result was interesting. I was able to get a flatter, more spacious and dynamically impressive. Be sure to give it a try if you get the bundle, you may surprise yourself!
R2 + BEANS
The R2 offers a balanced signature and complements Beans nicely by making it flatter. The bass is impactful but controlled, midbass is warm though quantity-wise lacking, it could be more for better harmonics. Midrange is slightly recessed but has good resolution. Upper mids are not hot so no sibilance here, everything feels completely under control. Treble region is delicate without any peaks, though the resolution is very good for the price. PRaT is good, the headroom feels airy and there is enough air between instruments to track them with ease. HiBy R2 makes Beans’ fun signature a little more Hi-Fi.
FD1 + BEANS
The FD1 offers a clean, fairly balanced slightly warm presentation. Bass is good, impact is great. Midbass is similar to R2. No bleeding issues here. Midrange has a warmer feeling to it, perhaps slightly thicker than R2. Instruments have enough air and imaging is good for the price. Upper mids are still controlled and smooth. Treble is energetic, slightly less sparky.
R2 + FD1 + BEANS
This is where the combo shines. This combination has a great synergy to it. Signature instantly feels meatier, bolder and more authoritative. Bass is round and impactful with great control, midbass feels meatier so the note thickness feels good with woody instruments. Stringed instruments are more natural as well thanks to that. Midrange is less recessed than before, vocals have good definition and clarity to them. Treble region is improved as well, extension is better and clarity of hi-hats and crashes are improved over R2 or FD1. It feels much more vivid than before with this stack.
Overall, the combo has very good energy, it is dynamically pleasing for a budget stack. PRaT is better than before, as well as the congestion handling capability of BEANS. Staging feels airier and instruments have more definitive placements than before. Transparency is improved as well as perceived clarity. I think now I understand why HiBy bundled them together.
Every unit in this review does more than the asking price indicates. HiBy has great build quality in my opinion and it’s no different with these three units. If you’re in the market for a very capable entry-level stack, or want to remember the days where we hooked up iPod nano’s to the back of Altoid amps, this is your cue. Do give them a chance, I found out that the R2+FD1 combo makes a great companion with your current favourite IEM.