Review: Flare Audio JET 1 & 2 – Mach speed

Sound – Jet 2
JET 2 softens the Jet 1’s base sound. That is, that big Jet 1 bass gains body, and perhaps a bit more channel bleed in the lows. This centres the lows to a constant gravity. It returns a warmer, closer, sound, more naturally with non-electronic music, especially country, jazz, and vocal sets.
Where JET 1 pushes bass wide, and back, sometimes behind the head, JET 2 pulls it forward and in, swirling centripetally between the shoulders. From it vocals bump forward and out. In their wake is clarity and harder chime and string edges. It retains similar mid-to-high pressure upper mids and highs, where clarity and at-the-ear extension reign supreme.
While I don’t want to get back to bass, I’ve got to. It isn’t just more centred, it’s got more body and follow through. At first I thought that what I was hearing might be longer decay. But on repeated listens, I’m convinced that JET 2 recovers just as quickly does as JET 1. Its body and central stage anchoring pulls close the thickness in both channels.
At first, I also questioned whether or not JET 2’s mids were recessed against the bass. That was just a problem of adaptation. JET 1 and JET 2’s bass and low regions are different enough to completely shift listening expectations.
JET 2’s mids are strong, laterally well spread, and just forward enough and well buttressed by their bass to pull focus in. Similar to JET 2’s bass, they feel, or perhaps, sound more solid, revealing detail well beyond basic midrange edges.
Both JET 1 and JET 2 pull away from a basic DT880 sound signature. That is, they trend ‘wet’, with wide-ish midranges. In comparison to the DT880, they have less peaky highs. And the bass pressure they output is something the DT880 can only dream of. If you love sparkly upper mids and generally flat field sound, but with bigger, and strangely light-hitting bass (JET 1) or bigger and more centrally anchored bass (JET 2), you’ll have no problem moving to either JET platform.
JET 2 has a sound and instrument spread more amenable to snotty audiophiles. But JET 1 has a unique sound that really begs to be listened to. Both are brighter than RHA’s MA650 / RHA MA750, but not quite as textured in the mids. Personally, JET 1 is the bee’s knees.
Like Flares Pro, both Jet earphones are sensitive enough to get great volume from about any source, but not enough to expose hiss from modern players and phones. You can even plug them into noisier desktop sources and enjoy clean music. Unlike Flares Pro, JET 1 and JET 2 stay well away from sometimes peaky highs.
This is how earphones should be designed.
End words
 
Neither JET 1 nor JET 2 will win any beauty pageants. They are good-fitting, light, comfy, and good-sounding earphones. They are simple, and Flare Audio’s marketing department have made some big claims. That appears to be par for Flare Audio gear. Flares Pro cemented my love for wireless. JET 1 and JET 2 cement my opinion that Flare Audio gets the needs of portable listeners. Neither JET hisses. Neither one overdoes bass. Both are crisp, with good stage width and extension both up and down. They sound good. But branding issues – the X-Ray thing in particular, may rub audiophiles the wrong way.
But then, audiophiles still posture good taste with the same mildewed selection of Hotel California and Melanie Gardot. Flares JET 1 and 2 will do, audiophile, they’ll do quell well.
Well done.

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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.

2 Comments

  • Reply May 1, 2018

    Arysyn

    Hi Nathan,

    Great reviews on the FlaresJet iems. I’m curious when you might review the FlaresGold. We had a small discussion about treble in the comments section on your review of the FlaresPro. I liked the FlaresPro, except for an issue in its upper treble tuning designed to be a hotter treble for the FlaresPro “live sound”, originating in the upper treble region.

    I’ve since returned the FlaresPro and purchased the FlaresGold. If you’ve read my posts on Head-Fi in the FlaresPro/FlaresGold thread, you’ll notice how often I write wonderful things about them. They resolved the treble issue – possibly moving the increased frequency to the lower treble, though I won’t know for sure until I get to see some measurements.

    I’ll wait on discussing more about the FlaresGold for writing a comment in a future review of it by you possibly. Again, I highly recommend getting the FlaresGold as soon as you can.

    • Reply May 2, 2018

      ohm image

      Definitely I will cover the Gold. Indeed, their upper treble is less hot, very mild in comparison with overall a similar sound signature, but one more amenable to long-time listening. Wonderful earphone.

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