Custom Build Choices (Personalization)
When it comes to designing your own custom in ear monitor many companies offer tools to visualize your design. Some companies do a better job at it than others. JH Audio does the best job of all! Just a few weeks ago they changed their design tool into something very unique, at least I know of nobody else that offers it. When you start designing your custom Lola you are facing a 3D picture of your soon to be CIEMs which you can rotate around all axis, so you always know how it will turn out to be. You can even zoom in and out to take a closer look!
You are left with a huge amount of choices of colours for your shell and faceplate. You can pick between solid or transparent colours, add some glitter to it or go the “Designer” route which gives you the opportunity of different materials for the shell and faceplate. Including carbon fibre (also in different colour combinations), real wood, metal, rhinestones, perloid or even printed textures.
If that weren’t enough, JH Audio also offers “Signature Designs” with very interesting offers. Luthier for example is a full wood CIEM with titanium faceplate. All of these choices effect the final costs of Lola, making it vary between 1750$ and 2745$.
For my personal model I went with a solid black shell and lightning stike carbon faceplates with the JH Audio flygirl and the Lola wording in gold. You might have seen this design already, as it is the one they promoted with their universal model. I found this particular one so convincing that I had my heart set even before I saw all the possibilities JH offers their customers.
When it comes to packaging and included accessories JH Audio went with a very simple yet also outstanding selection of goods. Included with your new set of custom Lola’s is of course a cable terminated to a 3.5mm right angled stereo plug, the plug itself is a bit bulky and I would’ve preferred a more low-profile solution, but it’s a normal size for a 90° plug. This cable has, as mentioned before, eight conductors and the bass attenuator can be found a little after the mini jack. You can alter the bass response curve (<200Hz) with a supplied mini screwdriver for each channel by turning the positions either clock-wise (higher dB count) or counter-clock-wise (lowering dBs). The earhooks are set with a memory wire, which I am not the biggest fan of, but since I don’t wear glasses they don’t cause me any discomfort. I simply prefer the heat shrink only or non-heat shrink (like plusSound cables) versions. Also included is a wax tool to remove earwax and other debris from your precious monitors. I recommend to clean your set of customs every day.
All that accessories are not that outstanding, but now comes the part that is: you will also get a Zippo-like full metal carrying case which is personalized to you. This is the most stable and robust case I have ever seen, it’s built like a tank and looks like it could survive a plane-crash. It closes with magnets and holds your monitors safely in there. On the front you will see the wording Lola and on back you can see that they have CNC’d out the form of a guitarist’s Plectum, a clear indication for where JH Audio stands in this business. The inside of the case is laid-out with velour, for further protection of the CIEMs.
All this comes in a sturdy cardboard box which also holds an instructions manual for fitting the custom IEMs.
Lola is one of the biggest, if not the biggest, custom in ear in my collection. I never was a friend of JH’s rather huge universals, as I hardly could get a decent fit. I wasn’t surprised to see that Lola is also of bigger size compared to other custom models I know. Fit on the other hand is splendid, that of course is what you would expect from an IEM that is shaped perfectly to your ear and ear-canals. The models themselves are made with excellent craftsmanship, there’s no single bubble in the shell or any residue of glue anywhere. The face plates close without any flaws and are well rounded without any sharp corners, just like they should be. A tiny bit of acrylic is standing over the metal bores on the nozzles.
As mentioned before, Lola is probably the biggest CIEM in my collection, but since it is a custom build I have no issues with fit and comfort. Lola does stand out a bit from my ears, but I don’t really care when I have them plugged in.
Page three for Sound and Sources!