Reader voted Best Gear – Update!

In this article we update you on the status of our ongoing polls: the Reader Voted Best Gear.

We’re September already and that means that it’s more than time to update you on the polls that we have been running for along time now. Let’s get started and see if there are any surprises!

The first poll we did was about the best headphone, or at least what our readers feel is the very best headphone on the market.




Best Headphone:

The number one position for the moment still is for the Focal Utopia headphone. It’s lead is decreasing however.

The Meeze Empyrean is now in 2nd place. Will the release of the ELITE change that in the near future? The Focal Stellia completes the podium, and that means the Sennheiser HD800S is out of the top3! That’s quite the change from last time, and two Focal’s on the podium…

The top 3 best Headphones according to you guys are:

  • Focal Utopia: 25.83%
  • Meze Audio Empyrean: 11.17%
  • Focal Stellia: 10.69%


The second poll we launched is about the Best IEMS on the market.

Best IEM:

The leader in the race still is the Campfire Audio Solaris 2020, with 13.35% of the votes. The Vision Ears Elysium keeps to the second spot with the Sony IER-Z1R taking the bronze! As we don’t cover CA, you can find out all about the 2nd place Elysium here:

The top 3 answers:

  • Campfire Audio Solaris 2020: 13.35%
  • Vision Ears Elysium: 12.57%
  • Sony ier-z1r: 11.08%

The third poll we published was about the best portable source.

Best Portable Source / DAP:

For now the number 1 still comfortably is the Astell&Kern SP2000 with 16,64% of the votes. The SP2000 indeed is an incredible DAP, will the new T version kick its ass? Let’s hope we can find out soon. You can find out all about the SP2000 here:


In second place we still see the Sony NW-WM1Z, and that’s really no surprise as a lot of people like it, and rightfully so. What surprises me more is so see the iBasso DX160 on the third step, but “My phone” is closing in fast.

The top 3:

  • Astell&Kern SP2000: 16.64%
  • Sony nw-wm1z: 10.92%
  • iBasso DX160: 7.28%


The fourth poll we did was about the best TWS IEM.


The gold is still easily held by the Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless 2 with 24.26% of the votes. Which one do you see taking the crown over the next few months? You can find out all about the Sennheiser here.

In second place we find the Sony WF-1000XM3 and the Lypertek TEVI is taking home the bronze medal for now.

The top 3 answers are:

  • Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless 2: 24.26%
  • Sony WF-1000XM3: 13.62%
  • Lypertek TEVI: 8.51%


The fifth poll we did was about the best DAC/AMP combo.

Best DAC/AMP combo:

The Chord Electronics Hugo2’s 1st position won’t easily be stolen. Their Mojo is still is in third place now, and the second spot is still for the Focal Arche. The RME ADI-2 is losing ground quickly. You can find out all about the HUGO 2 here:

The top 3 answers are:

  • Chord Hugo 2: 13.58%
  • Focal Arche: 10.44%
  • Chord Mojo: 9.65%

The sixth poll we did was about the best CIEM.

Best Custom IEM:

Big changes here and the new leader is the 64 Audio A18t ! The former leader, Craft Ears Craft Four, is now in second place. The podium is completed by the Unique Melody MEST, one of my personal favorites.

The top 3 answers are:

  • 64 Audio A18t: 22.04%
  • Craft Ears Craft Four: 18.82%
  • Unique Melody MEST: 16.13%


The last poll we did was about the best phone.

Best Phone:

Huge victory still for the LG V60 ThinQ, with 51.83% of the votes, that’s enormous.


In second place we find the Apple iPhone 12 Pro and the Sony Xperia 1 II is taking home the bronze medal for now.

The top 3 answers are:

  • LG V60 ThinQ: 51.83%
  • iPhone 12 Pro: 15.85%
  • Sony Xperia 1 II: 9.45%


That’s it for this update. LEt us know in the comment section if you have an idea for a new poll.

Keep voting!

4.4/5 - (54 votes)

Lieven is living in Europe and he's the leader of the gang. He's running Headfonia as a side project next to his full time day job in Digital Marketing & Consultancy. He's a big fan of tube amps and custom inear monitors and has published hundreds of product reviews over the years.

1 Comment

  • Reply September 14, 2021

    Mason W.

    I would add that a LG V60 ThinQ isn’t a smart purchase these days though considering LG is ending mobile phone production and eventually software support. However, I suppose it’s not a bad buy if it’s used as an alternative to a midrange DAP from FiiO, HiBy, Shanling, etc. considering the V60 will have a better processor, screen, RAM, and newer version of Android compared to most midrange Android DAPs. And it thankfully has a micro SD card slot.

    As a primary, daily driver phone though? That’s the digital equivalent of jumping on a sinking ship.

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