Disclaimer: Oriveti supplied Primacy for the purposes of this review. I paid nothing for it. Primacy goes for 299$ USD. You can find out all about it here: Oriveti Primacy Premium Triple Driver Hybrid.
Not that I’m into every hybrid earphone out there, but I’m definitely a fan. The first hybrid I heard is probably the first you heard: AKG’s clear, contrasty, K3003. That was all it took. I’m hooked. Primacy hooks up a single 8,6mm dynamic driver with two ‘exclusive’ dual armatures.
To this myopic reviewer, Oriveti appeared out of thin air. With my specs fitted, I’m super impressed by Primacy. It is a pleasant-looking earphone in a fat, understated box, in a physiologically familiar shape, in an understated colour.
Its nomenclature is at once religiously pious, at once pompous. Both adjectives sum up its simple, all-seeing eye. Primacy it glares, unblinking, from your ears; Primacy! glares out, wreathed by its black, beautifully CNCd aluminium chassis.
Unfortunately, its slim, soft-angled body has a few fit issues, arising from perpendicular lines. Primacy sits flush and comfy in the ear, but the cable juts straight out and up. Smallish eared people will find the cable juts out over the helix’s descending front edge. A quick, cheap fix would be something like an elbowed MMCX plug. A more expensive fix would be to extend Primacy’s MMCX neck further forward at an acute angle to the sound tube. Ultrasone’s IQ is a good study.
That is my biggest gripe with Primacy.
The other is the cable. It’s not a bad cable. It makes next to no microphonic noises. But both its internal architecture and sleeve are sub-par. It stretches when pulled and absorbs body oil and sweat. I fully expect it to harden and crystalise in short order, especially in the warm, wet climes.
What it nails: 1 – robust, simple, and utilitarian neck cinch 2 – low-profile heat-shrink y-split 3 – slim and case-friendly plug – are brilliant. As always, I’d prefer it terminated in a low-profile L-shaped plug, which better fits the rigours of in-pocket life.
With a better angled neck, Primacy would be THE bedside earphone. As it is, if your pillow is soft enough, you can sleep with Primacy in. If not, you will feel the cable digging into your helix.
The accessory package is the sort of overkill often seen in budget, fly-by-night companies with brute-force tactics:
4 foam tips, 16 silicon tips, a wax loop, 3,5mm to 6,3mm step-up adapter, airline adapter, thick-arse ear guides, and a tightly engineered metal case. The latter is so tightly machined that its lid glides down on a cushion of air when not forced. But I don’t get the idea that Oriveti are a fly-by-night. Primacy is too well designed and delivered.
I don’t remember when I’ve been as split. Primacy’s misses stick out the more for its nearly perfect hits.
Sound and more after the jump: