Review: Lear LCM-Skyline – No Brainer

Fit & Comfort

One of the benefits of the 3D print is the improved fit and comfort. I’ve sent a pair of impressions to Lear Audio ages ago for my first collaboration. However, despite they used the scans of my same original impressions, the fit is different. The Skyline sits much more comfortable.

Inserting and removing the Skyline is easier as well, which creates a more pleasing overall experience. To me the fit is drastically improved. I thought the Turbo’s fit to be quite good, but when I put on the Skyline, I realized there’s a big difference especially in terms of comfort.

I immediately associated this with Lear’s new 3D printed shells. This is a game-changing technology in the Custom IEM market and hopefully many companies will switch to this method soon. I’m very pleased with the fit.

But be aware that the Skyline is a large monitor. It’s quite huge despite its single dynamic driver configuration. So it sticks out from your ears quite a bit. I assume this was needed for the acoustic design and the Balanced In Ear Pressure concept. To me this shouldn’t cause any trouble though, unless you like to lie down on your bed sideways.

Sound

The Skyline is an obvious improvement over the Turbo for many reasons and I will explain them shortly. But overall, it is a warm and forgiving monitor with a smooth and relaxed sound signature. The Skyline is very cohesive, quite warm and romantic at times. The bass is not focused on the sub area now, it instead focuses on mid bass and it does that the right way. The sound overall is more refined with better resolution and dynamism. The instruments and vocals are very nice to hear with good tonality.

Lear LCM-Skyline

Bass

The bass has more control and better decay than the Turbo with improved texture. Compared to Turbo, this is a tamed down bass response for the sake of better overall resolution and separation. The Turbo was too sub-bass oriented and too strong at times, which made it somewhat slow and lacking in mid range dynamics.

This is not the case with the Skyline, as we have a much better balance in this area. This increase in overall control over the bass provides a significant benefit to the overall spectrum, allowing other frequencies to come to the forefront. This allows us to see what the Skyline can do against the fact that it has a single dynamic driver. I think Lear has made a very accurate tuning on this CIEM’s bass. They certainly maxed out the 8mm driver’s potential very well to create a very cohesive sound.

So all in all, this is not a dominating bass response anymore. You still have plenty of bass, but more controlled, refined and better textured with better speed. It has good detail and resolution as well, which is quite impressive.

Lear LCM-Skyline

Mids

In the mid-section of the IEM, we see that it continues to give its warm presentation with good dynamics, detail and tonality. It certainly doesn’t contradict its own bass response. Lower mids are slightly behind though, whilst the upper mid area is a bit more forward. This makes the female vocals sound a bit more accentuated compared to male vocals, which can be either good or bad depending on your choices.

The IEM’s overall tonality and timbre are quite successful and to me on point then many monitors, despite its low price. Sure, this is not the best dynamics or timbre you can find, but I can’t ask anything more to be honest. Although this is not the IEM for the lovers of sharp and detailed sound with good brightness, you’ll like it if you like a warm sound with an euphonic signature. Mids also have very good body and definition, more so than the Turbo.

I especially liked female vocals with the Skyline with its romantic approach to music. I think Lear Audio’s new Hearing Care concept also plays a role here. No frequency is excessive, aggressive or bothering to your ears. It’s so smooth, easy-going and mild. Yet, it also manages to give better crispness and transparency than the Turbo.

More about the sound on PAGE 4.

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A lover of personal audio from Turkey, Berkhan always seeks the perfection. He chooses a simplistic expression of sound at all times, and tries to keep his photography enthusiasm at the same level with audio. Sometimes photography wins, and sometimes his love for music takes him over and he puts that camera aside.

9 Comments

  • Reply August 29, 2019

    Scott

    Great review. Any comments on how well the Balanced In-Ear Pressure feature works? Do you notice any difference in isolation compared to a regular CIEM?

    • Reply September 2, 2019

      Berkhan

      Compared to regular CIEMs, it has less isolation but it’s OK when you push the play button. When music is on, the isolation is quite good. The system works great as there’s no pressure applied to you ears and it’s very easy to insert and remove without the slightest of discomfort.

      • Reply September 2, 2019

        Psycomu

        I dont own above compared iem, but like the IT01s’ sound alot, hows that compare to IT01s?

        Or is there any iem for upgrade suggestion?

        • Reply September 2, 2019

          Berkhan

          To me it’s a lot better to IT01

  • Reply September 15, 2019

    yiannis

    compared to LEAR’s Kaleido?

  • Reply September 24, 2019

    Asegier

    I have the LEAR A1D Mk. I and I went in just last week to try out their entire new low end tier earphones.

    I agree with Berkhan, the Skyline is better (IMO) than the Turbo and Kaleido. However, I tried the LEAR A1D Mk III and I feel that that one is better. It’s got better clarity in my opinion. Although I suppose “better” is subjective, and it could also be because I’ve had the A1D Mk. I for many years, maybe I’m just used to it.

    I bought the Skyline in the end because I felt that getting another A1D was redundant (although they use different drivers in the Mk III. compared to the Mk. I) and also the price was very appealing.

    One thing to note is that if you are planning on getting the Combo Con upgrade anyways, then the A1D may potentially be a better choice as the clerk (Matthew) told me that the A1D Mk. III comes with Combo Con at $1999 HKD. Whereas for the Skyline the Combo Con package is at $1488. So it’s really only an extra $500 HKD (maybe around 80 USD?) more for the A1D Mk III. Also the Skyline only comes in 3 body colors. I think it’s solid black, translucent black and stardust black (a new skyline color I think). Faceplates cost anywehre from $398 to $698 (custom design, yes price has increased from before when I did my A1D) or you can choose from any standard colors for free.

  • Reply October 27, 2019

    Chris

    Very Clear and Detailed Review. I’m quite new on this thing, i enjoyed using BGVP DMG, so i wanted to ask how is the sound if we compared skyline with BGVP DMG ? Thanks a lot

    • Reply October 28, 2019

      Berkhan

      Skyline is darker but to me more controlled and coherent across the range. I would choose the Skyline since it’s also custom with better isolation.

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