Review: Oriolus V2 | Gold

SOUND

Honestly, Oriolus V2 is a special IEM. There are not too many “special” IEM’s in the market, most of them are similar to others in many ways. Of course you can ask the question; “what makes a IEM special to you?”. Well, a special IEM to me is the one that gives a musical presentation without sacrificing technical qualities. That’s the description I made myself when I test those things. When I think about the Oriolus, all that comes to my mind is the word “special”.

It’s not easy to put the Oriolus into a one single category. It’s not reference no, no in any way, neither neutral nor flat and the presentation is somewhat towards full bodied musicality with a bold approach. Not dark, not bright, not just one way or another. Oriolus is one of those “coherency lords” among IEM’s. That makes it special like the Kaiser 10 as I find many thing in common between them. They have a similar approach to music; they give the listener what they actually want, they don’t give some another piece of “flat, reference, edgy” sound like so many others, but they still have the Hi-End quality.

Another great thing about the Oriolus V2 is the natural presentation. While being musical, it doesn’t feel unrealistic. Every part of the song comes effortless to you without giving an unnatural ambiance. That’s a part I always look for in any equipment. Some are “too reference” and some are “too musical”, yet the Oriolus sits just between the two types, which is something of a rare gift.

o3

Therefore, I think the Oriolus V2 is at the top level together with the Kaiser 10, in terms of giving musicality and technicality combined. Maybe I can also add JH Layla to this level but the price is a let down for it. There’s also the Angie by JH Audio, yet although it’s also a musical and natural IEM, it can’t catch those 3 about technical qualities, especially resolution. There could also be some other handful of IEM’s that can give this kind of quality, but those IEM’s haven’t been tested by me yet.

BASS

The frequency response of the Oriolus is very very coherent. If it wasn’t the bass this could be the coherency king overall, but low frequencies are somewhat strong. So when you listen to it with something like Lotoo Paw Gold, you can feel the bass is a little bit overpowering. That doesn’t mean the bass is shadowing the other parts of the spectrum, that’s definitely not the case with the Oriolus at any time. Still, it sometimes gives you the bass that feels a notch over from what should’ve been. This is the effect of the dynamic driver of course, together with the copper cable.

Moving on from the strong nature of the bass and checking the quality, the Oriolus probably has the best bass quality among any IEM at this price. It’s fast enough, has the rumble, control and resolution that you require, has the tightness, airiness and recovery when needed. Bass also separates from other freq’s very well. Think every kind of bass quality you can imagine, Oriolus has them all.

The effect of the cable -in consideration of the copper material- is the added bass quantity. When you switch to a generic 2-pin cable, the bass is not that strong and rumbling overall. With the upgrade cable you get a pretty strong bass but maybe the purists won’t like this. Especially the subbass area is quite powerful with the PW cable, which can give some unnatural times when paired with a poor or a wrong source. As always, you need good files with good sources to get the quality that this IEM offers.

o2

The thing I loved about the Oriolus was the emphatic subbass and midbass response, which gives the IEM a great depth. It lets you to perceive the recording as a live recording, because it sounds so intense and yet immensely airy at the same time. That’s the big difference from the BA bass; the air and the depth. I think that’s the reason why other companies are trying to couple the two driver types into one IEM.

MIDS

The mids of the Oriolus V2 is at the warmish side but not fully warm. There’s a good balance right there. The resolution of mids is almost equal to Kaiser 10, falling behind just a hair. Vocals are clear, instruments are natural and placement is top notch. The only small downside I could find is the vivid approach and this maybe can’t meet the needs of the reference folk. But it has that emotion that lets you to put yourself in the music and feel the energy in the recording; ultimately, this IEM rocks it every single time. The strength of this IEM is this all-around quality, thanks to the full sounding bass connected with musical mids. Whatever you need, you’re going to get it from this pretty bird.

With the PW Cable, the mids have more resolution and they sound more intimate. When I used an epic 2-pin cable I noticed a loss of intimacy especially on vocals. They sounded a bit distant and a bit colder than the copper cable. So I suppose this was a good decision by Oriolus to combine this great IEM with this high quality cable. I definitely recommend the cable for Oriolus users.

o4

TREBLE

Trebles are gentle and forgiving most of the time. They stay a bit behind in the soundstage, which makes the Oriolus an easy-going IEM. I like the fact that they built this IEM considering the musicality. It seems they really worked hard for making a good balance across the range. You can’t get this kind of a result with just a lucky tuning. There should’ve been a good teamwork there.

As the other parts, I found no problem at the high frequency area. There’s a good extension here despite the distant approach which is not an easy task. The treble is also quite fast and articulate but of course not at the level of S-EM9. The resolution of the highs is not at the top level among IEM’s, but it is close. This is the least focused area across the spectrum, so the resolution at this particular range is a little behind when compared to bass and mids. Still, it’s very close to the top in terms of quality. Quantity is another story here, as it’s not a bright or treble-ish IEM. For those who want more treble, you can get the S-EM9 and you won’t look back. But if you want a more coherent, warmer and fuller sound, this is the IEM for you.

Technical points, small comparisons and closing on page three.

Review: Oriolus V2 | Gold
4.3 (86.03%) 63 vote[s]

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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.

37 Comments

  • Reply December 13, 2016

    CL

    thanks for that thorough review, i too enjoyed the Oriolus 2, but i did prefer the TG334 thou it could well be my mind playing tricks as the fitear felt better physically in my ears. if you get the opportunity, take a listen to the fostex fitear UIEM collab… they are almost like brothers from different mothers.

    • Reply December 13, 2016

      Berkhan

      Thanks for the comment.

      It is unlikely for me to try that because FitEar products are hard to get. But we’ll see 🙂

      • Reply December 13, 2016

        CL

        it’s actually branded as fostex so it’s more widely avaliable than other fitears 🙂

        http://www.fostexinternational.com/docs/products/TE100.shtml

        • Reply December 13, 2016

          Berkhan

          From that webpage: “THIS PRODUCT IS SOLD ONLY IN SELECTED COUNTRIES. NOT SOLD IN EUROPE.”

          So I don’t know… 🙂

          Do you have any idea how we can get in touch?

      • Reply December 22, 2016

        Surya Pratama Wijaya

        Hi Berkhan,

        Your article on the oriolus was spot on. A very special iem indeed. I too have auditioned the oriolus and agree with you about the shallow insertion. You mentioned that the oriolus is available in a custom. I wanted to ask you how i could go about ordering a custom version. All the retailers online only seem to sell the universal version.

        Thank you
        Best Regards,
        Surya

        • Reply December 22, 2016

          Berkhan

          Thanks for the comment Surya.

          Well I don’t know how to get the CIEM version, I guess you should contact directly with them. Maybe they make CIEM’s only for Japan I’m not sure. Try to contact Oriolus Japan.

  • Reply December 13, 2016

    Nick

    If you haven’t had a chance yet, I hope you can try Campfire Audio Vega and Andromeda. I would love to know your comparison between the Oriolus MKII and those two.

    • Reply December 13, 2016

      Berkhan

      Yeah if I ever listen to those I could also add them to my IEM list on Head-Fi.

    • Reply December 13, 2016

      CL

      Nick, they complement each other quite well, i listened to all 3 and ended up getting the Andro which is a better fit to the music i listen to. Oriolus is more a “big speakers” like listening experience, it is less in your face than either of the CAs, whereas CAs are more in your face (in the best sense of the term), O2 is more relaxing (but not boring). O2 has more in common with another favourite of mine, the fitear parterre but O2 has much better technicalities, from tonality and resolution.

  • Reply December 13, 2016

    Serge

    Would it be appropriate to compare Oriolus with ASTELL&KERN AKT8IE MKII, which is $200 less and got here, on Headfonia, some good recommendations? Thanks!

    • Reply December 14, 2016

      CL

      Serge, very different sound signatures. T8IE is a lot drier and less laid back. Both are good at what they do, T8IE is more fun vibrant exciting compared to the more laid back, rich Oriolus, imho. T8IE is super comfortable though

    • Reply December 14, 2016

      Berkhan

      I think Oriolus is the better IEM overall, especially at the bass department. But as CL said, it’s super comfy and has a good sound as well. If you seek for just the sound quality alone, Oriolus is the better choice IMO.

  • Reply January 19, 2017

    PH

    Great review, I also really like my Oriolus. Couple of questions. How much impact does the the new cable have? I have the older cable with my MKII and was wondering what I would notice with an upgrade (or more like what did you notice)? Genres that I listen to most are edm/trance and I am skeptical if I would notice much difference for that added cost. I am more of an music enthusiast than a true audiophile and unfortunately majority of my music is compressed and i have always been semi critical of cable upgrades. Lastly do you have some recommendations on the foam tips? Mine fit fine, but become slightly uncomfortable after about an hr of continous use. Thanks.

    • Reply January 24, 2017

      Berkhan

      PH I’m sorry for this late response. With the cable you will hear a bigger bass with a better resolution and intimacy across mids. For foam tips I don’t have a specific choice but grey foams that supplied within the box are pretty nice to me.

  • Reply August 12, 2017

    gunwale

    i got a thor silver ii for my oriolus and it sounded much better in every spectrum.

    i tried pw no5 and it sounded quite closed to the stock cable.

    • Reply August 13, 2017

      Berkhan

      Never tried it with a Thor Silver unfortunately.

      Much thanks for sharing your experience.

  • Reply December 6, 2017

    Thurein

    Hi Berkhan,

    First of all thanks for your review. It is spot on for me in my audition with my WM1Z. I have 2 questions if you could kindly answer. Thanks..

    Firstly, may i know what is the different between MK II and V2?
    Is the different only the PW No.5 cable only?

    Secondly, what is the best after market cable do you think for jazz, country, pop and string instrumental song for Oriolus iem.

    Thanks.

    Thurein

    • Reply December 6, 2017

      Berkhan

      Hi Thurein

      Thanks for your comment.

      MKII and V2 is the same thing. Some say MKII and some say V2, it’s exactly the same IEM.

      I use Effect Audio Ares II 4.4mm Balanced with my Oriolus. DAP is Sony WM1A. Of course there are lots of options but Ares II worked out very well for me so I can recommend that one.

  • Reply December 6, 2017

    Thurein

    Hi Berkhan,

    Thanks for the reply.
    Phew… I thought I just bought old version of Oriolus. ????

    Ares I noticed is using litz copper.

    My WM1Z being more of full bodied and warm signature, should I go for the more of silver and copper base mixture like lionheart or Leonidas?

    As do not want to be overly bass impact and full sounding.

    Thanks.

    Thurein

    • Reply December 6, 2017

      Berkhan

      Ares II is not a typical copper cable. It still has the openness and treble extension. But yes, if you have the 1Z then it would be better to get a silver or silver plated copper cable. You’ll have a more balanced signature overall.

      • Reply December 7, 2017

        Thurein

        Hi Berkhan,

        Thanks for the reply, I will try those cables and decide on one. Now enjoying with stock cable n 1Z.
        ????

        Thanks

        Thurein

        • Reply December 14, 2017

          Thurein

          Hi Berkhan,

          Finally settled on the upgrade cable for me Oriolus MK II with Eos cable from music sanctuary Singapore.

          They told me this cable was a collaboration between them and effect audio. The main cable is also what you mentioned Ares II.

          True enough from what you said this cable although is copper base, it never overwhelm bass department with my 1Z and Oriolus. Improved mid-range lushness, extend treble quite a bit and Low end feel more tighter with good presence.

          Now I am really enjoying a good quality after market, thanks to you.

          ????Thumbs up.????

  • Reply December 21, 2017

    Harlan

    Hi Berkhan,

    Your review just convinced me to buy the Oriolus MK2:).

    Unfortunately being the chinese version the PW Audio no5 cable will not be included.

    I’m looking for an aftermarket cable for the Oriolus MK2 which I can find in Europe and I understand that you prefer the Effect Audio Ares II with them? How is the pair up Ares II – Oriolus compared with the PW Audio no5 – Oriolus? Thanks

    • Reply December 22, 2017

      Berkhan

      Hi,

      I like it with Ares II. PW No.5 is warmer and darker than that, and I think silver plated or silver cables doesn’t play well with it.

      Copper helps to reflect its own warm character in my opinion. Both Ares II and No. 5 are pretty good. If you like to have a little more open signature you can go with Ares II.

      • Reply December 22, 2017

        Harlan

        Thanks Berkhan. I think I’ll order the Ares II 🙂 Merry Christmas!

  • Reply June 9, 2018

    S.Yu

    Hi Berkhan,

    I had a week with the O2 paired with a L&P L3Pro and I’d say I mostly agree with your review, I also tried a generic cable about $100 (mainly for the 2.5mm balanced plug) and immediately noticed too that the mids don’t work, not on L3Pro’s 2.5mm nor on its 3.5mm with an adaptor, the original cable is a very good match.
    Another thing I’d like to add is that with its relaxed presentation and wide soundstage, it’s not a really good match with the more exciting genres of music, it presents almost everything effortlessly and listening to those it felt hard to get engaged with the music.
    By the way, I’m looking into a second-hand AKR03 right now, but I’m struggling to find reviews, it seems to be of much better value than the Layla for starters. I believe you guys on Headfonia didn’t write about it either (though many other JH models have been covered) but do you by chance know why its rarely covered?

    • Reply June 11, 2018

      Berkhan

      Hi,

      Yes, it’s not hyper engaging with the tunes that requires that much energy.

      By AKR03 I think you mean the Roxanne? I remember some reviews of Roxanne on Head Fi, it was a really popular item when it was released. You sure you can’t find reviews about it?

      JH is Linus’ responsibility. They’ve chosen to send him Layla, their flagship but not the Roxanne. I’ve listened to it before by the way, and found Angie to suit my tastes better.

      I don’t know the communication between Linus and JH, but a Roxanne review is unlikely if you ask me.

  • Reply November 1, 2018

    rob

    I just picked up the “Reborn” version of this IEM and i can say that in 30 minutes of 90’s Drum and Bass, this article is still 100% on point – and describes why i like it so much. I will say this though, i noticed when i bought my Campfire Lyra that after some hours listening the bass will mellow a bit. Either the drivers eases up or my ears get used to it – but either way the bass usually feels less overpowering. I’m sure that will be the case here as well.

    • Reply November 2, 2018

      Berkhan

      Enjoy, it’s still one of the best IEMs.

  • Reply December 14, 2018

    Jonathan

    Hey there, so apparently I have the opportunity to purchase these as a CIEM for ~$1,000. Would you say that this IEM is still worth it at this price point?

    • Reply December 15, 2018

      Berkhan

      Yes it does. There are many options for 1000 $ though. It all depends on your taste.

      • Reply December 17, 2018

        Jonathan

        Well, from how you describe it, it sounds like the oriolus is the kind of sound signature I’m looking for. I’m looking for something that somewhat sounds like an IEM version of the HE-500. What are some other good options at the 1000 range that you could solidly recommend?

        • Reply December 18, 2018

          Berkhan

          I would say;

          P-EAR-S SH-3
          M-Fidelity SA-50
          Warbler Prelude
          JH Angie
          InEarz Nirvana
          Lime Ears Model X
          Lime Ears Aether
          Cosmic Ears CE6
          Ultimate Ears Pro Reference Remastered

  • […] releases. One thing’s for certain though; they make great personal audio products. Their Oriolus MK2 (which was re-released later as the Reborn) is still one of the best hybrid IEMs around, and […]

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