Picture Sunday: Flare Audio’s Flares Pro

Disclaimer : This article is part of the Picture Sunday series. For other articles of this series, click here.

Flare Audio’s Flares Pro marched into my office last Thursday. Or was it Friday? All I can remember is this thinking: ‘will I cut my hand on its box?’ Stupid me. The Cube is obviously made of foam, not razor blades.

As stunning as is the box, the earphones, whose male MMCX bits fasten and unfasten from the y-split, surprise even more. Wut’s that? Where’s muh exchangeable cables? Wut if the mmxc connector breaks? What if I want to do wired, rather than wireless balanced?

Good questions, all.

Flares Pro is designed to a different beat. An English beat – and trust me, such a thing exists – if you will. I’ve found that the English tend toward extremes. When they’re on, they’re really on. And when they’re off, they’re really off. Flares Pro has a couple of claims to fame, both of which I think are really on.

First, Flares Pro’s wireless DAC/amp module spits balanced out. I’ve yet to test its output with my Lynx HILO, but on paper its outputs are interesting. Another is that it outputs very little noise. Flares Pro earphones register the barest of hiss at all from it. If you have a sensitive ear, rest assured, what you’ll hear over the wireless is nothing but your music. Second, its battery life is better than average. And, its attached wires make it a lot harder to get sweat into the connections. The back of the earphones are ported. I’m sure sweat can get in there. But the MMCX connections are hidden far enough away from the merry sweat maker called your skull to hopefully ensure they keep going for longer.

And Flares Pro’s earphone-side rubber stress relief is solid. Is it weaker than earphone-side female MMCX connections? I have no idea. I like this design. I’m also not wedded to removable cables.

Currently, I’ve got the Flares Pro snapped to a Mont-Bell t-shirt. The wireless signal is coming from my iMac, which has had the darnedest time hooking up with a number of wireless DAC/amps. I just walked over to our bedroom to check on my daughter. She’s okay. So was the wireless, which from my iMac, traditionally sucks. We’ll see how the iPhone works.

So far so good.

Flares Pro’s bass to mids frequency range is pretty flat, though raised above neutral. I’d probably like a more sparkly treble, but who knows. Flares Pro’s neutral plateau from bass through mids is its own selling point. From there, its slightly downward-curving high-frequency fits an overall mid-centric, bass-anchored, warm sound aimed at z-axis detail rather than wall-of-sound x-axis splay.

I likey. So far, very much.

4.9/5 - (142 votes)

Back before he became the main photographer for bunches of audio magazines and stuff, Nathan was fiddling with pretty cool audio gear all day long at TouchMyApps. He loves Depeche Mode, trance, colonial hip-hop, and raisins. Sometimes, he gets to listening. Sometimes, he gets to shooting. Usually he's got a smile on his face. Always, he's got a whisky in his prehensile grip.

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