Technical Performance – Sources
The technical side of the Fusion is quite strong. The sound stage is certainly one of its highlights. It was the first thing I noticed when I first listened to the Fusion. The sound stage performance is very impressive in both width and depth. It has a great sense of space and layering. The positioning and imaging are very good as well. With the combination of those, you have a great monitor that can help you to imagine the stage in your mind when you close your eyes.
The instrument separation is also one of the most impressive aspects of the Fusion. The background is clean and dark with a good quality source, especially with the Hugo 2.
Whilst the tonality is great, I think it would’ve been even greater with more thickness in mid-bass and lower mids in general. This might be my only criticism about the Fusion.
The overall resolution in the whole spectrum is very close to the TOTL level and it scales with better sources. Yet, what I liked about the Fusion is that it can cope with lower quality sources well. It doesn’t sound terrible from the HiBy R3 Pro for example, compared to the Dethonray DTR1. Sure, there’s a big difference for an audiophile here, but it’s not a terrible experience with a lower-tier source. It is also easy to drive and it works with smartphones, BT DACs, and dedicated set-ups.
The SA50 is a neutral to bright monitor which sounds supremely clean and transparent. So it has some common aspects naturally. The bass of the SA50 is more linear but the impact and rumble are stronger with the Fusion. So I give the edge to the Fusion in the bass department.
The mids are great on both but the SA50 gives a bit more transparency when compared. The Fusion has a bit more warmth and engagement in there, and it gives more fun that way. They both have excellent treble performance and two of the best I’ve heard. They can make a treble lover happy for many years. However the Fusion has better control in terms of peaks and sibilances.
The sound-stage is a bit wider with the SA50 but the Fusion has better depth. The Fusion also has more balance and control across the spectrum. For user experience, the SA50 has the best isolation I’ve experienced by far among any IEM regardless of the price.
The bass on the SH-3 is not as impactful as the Fusion, but it’s a warmer bass than the SA50. However, the same story here; the Fusion has more texture and impact on bass.
They’re both have great tonality in mids but I think the SH-3 has a better lower midrange performance here. It has a better body in that department. Otherwise, they’re both great for mid reproduction and in fact, two of the best in terms of tonal accuracy.
Treble-wise the Fusion has the edge with its unique driver. But the SH-3 is also excellent and one of the great examples of BA treble in the market. They’re close in resolution, transparency, control, and balance. So the deciding factor here would be the treble performance of the Fusion or the lower midrange quality of the SH-3.
The Penta is a unique custom monitor with its porcelain build and design. It’s a very niche product but it’s a success in its own way. The Wavaya Penta has a subtle bass response when compared to the dynamic driver bass of the Fusion. The Fusion is nowhere near a basshead IEM, but the Penta has a very linear bass with much less quantity.
As much as its uniqueness in terms of build, the Penta has also a very unique mid reproduction. It has a very romantic, yet lively tonality in terms of instrument presentation. So I would have to give the edge to Penta here. Simply because of its great midrange uniqueness, which so few IEMs manage to give.
Treble is where the Fusion overshadows the Penta. Whilst the Penta has two EST drivers, it doesn’t manage to give the extension and air like the Fusion provides.
The Itsfit Lab Fusion is a new fresh air for the market for a competitive price. You get great craftsmanship and design, great fit, great build quality, and a great sound. It is simply excellent. I can understand if people would want big bass, more colorful mids, or simply a signature with more fun. However, the Fusion is one of the most well-balanced and cohesive hybrid monitors you can find.
Except for the lower midrange, it simply does everything right and ticks all of the boxes for me in terms of sound. For a bit more body, you can pair it up with an aftermarket cable which I promise will result nicely.
If it had a much higher price point, I would’t have done it, but with this price it has to be in our Best Custom IEM Recommendations. There’s no other way for me. Easily recommended if you’re looking for a flagship around the $1000 range.