Visit & Review: Vision Ears VE5 – Vocals Vocals Vocals

4. Price & Accessories

Prices for the 5 driver by Vison Ears start at €1399. That seems to be more or less the market price even if it is a bit on the higher side of average (Earwerkz Penta: $999, Rhines Stage 5: €1379, CE5P:$900, Noble 5c: $950)

The VE5 comes delivered in a nice personalized box as shown in the picture above. The picture below shows a preview of the new upcoming VE box, quite a few others companies have switched or will switch to these boxes soon.

IMG_4806

Inside are: a cleaning tool, some stickers, a cleaning spray, a soft pouch (which I love), dry caps (always useful) and an 6.3 to 3.5 adapter. The big box allows for everything to be in there but I have to admit I am now using a Pelican 1010 and the velour pouch with the VE5. The 1010 fits a drying cap, stock cable, cleaning tool and the pouch with the monitors and the Mars cable.

In the end there are only a limited number of accessories an IEM company can give you, VE gives the usual and a bit more so there’s no complaining there.

5. Customer Service

Again, I didn’t follow the normal procedure as I we arranged everything by email. If I understood well VE still uses a form (in PDF) to order your unit. The form can be found here and it is pretty straightforward on how to proceed.

My VE5 fit well and work great so I didn’t get a chance (yet) to try their after sales service but while I was with them on a normal Friday afternoon, there actually were several people who came into the store to check out the gear. All were helped quickly and in the friendliest way and I have no doubt they will help existing customers (with problems) out in the same helpful way.

6. Driveability & Sources

The VE5 is very easy to drive and basically doesn’t need any amplification to sound really good. I have used it straight of the iBasso DX90, Fiio X5SG, AK120ii and AK240 with an external amp to fire it up. My favorite players with the VE5 are the Fiio X5 Second Generation and the AK120ii. While there still is an obvious gap in sound quality between them they both share the same characteristics: detailed yet musical, very clear and fast sounding, to sum it up.

To me the DX90 was a bit slow with the VE5 but the bass did get a bit more focus. (we’re not talking about night and day differences here). Of course the AK240 did just as good as the AK120ii but I just prefer using the AK120ii for some reason. I have way too many portable amplifiers to talk about all of them so I’ll just give a short impression of the latest few. The VE5 on the CypherLabs Picollo has a completely black background and there is no audible hiss at all. The left-right balance is superb even when listening at very low volume. The ALO Rx performs better in the mids section, which is one of the strong points of the VE5, but the left right balance at low volumes isn’t the best. It also still gets way too loud too quickly with my sources used and there unfortunately is some hiss audible when no music is playing or in silent passages. Musical wise however the Rx is gorgeous to listen to but I really get upset when I hear hiss and noise so I didn’t really like it on the Rx.

Same story for the all new and to be reviewed Cypherlabs Trio tube amp. The big difference between this amp and the previous two is that it wasn’t developed with IEMs in mind and as a result you will a lot of noise when using sensitive IEMS (which almost all customs are). If you can look/hear past this noise you will get a very musical, slightly smooth and warm sound with great speed. The Trio is an excellent portable amplifier as you will read soon in the review, it just isn’t for all IEMs. Last but not least is the budget Fiio E12A which also gives a completely black background. I quite liked the way the VE5 sounded on the E12A and that’s quite logic as the E12 delivers really smooth and musical mids, the strongest point to me in the E12A.

With the Chord Electronics HUGO, you do hear a little bit of hiss but it isn’t audible when music is playing. The Hugo does make the VE very smooth and musical sounding. The big advantage of the Hugo is that the scroll button allows a very precise volume setting, even at extremely low volumes, and all that without channel imbalance.

Basically, again, you really don’t need an amplifier but you can use one if you feel the VE5 needs a bit more body or treble focus or bass, etc. Like I said, I have mostly been using it without amplification straight out of the DAP so there’s no real or immediate need for an extra investment.

7. Sound

After having unpacked my freshly made monitors I took a seat at the demo area and hooked it up to the AK120ii + Hugo combo I took along with me. I immediately liked what I heard.

The description Vision Ears gives of the VE5 is: “Crystal-clear, airy highs result in a stunningly open sound. Powerful presence in the high-mids gives a great vocal-reproduction. Outstanding clarity and precision in combination with great resolution over the whole frequency-range”. And that is a pretty correct description. If you remember the BA configuration (1 x Highs, 1 x high-mids, 2 x mids, 1 x lows) you already noticed the focus is on the mids and highs, and especially the upper mids. The upper mids and the treble is where the VE5 really shines but that doesn’t mean at all the rest isn’t sounding good, it’s just not as present. That’s the best description I can give it.

Sound continues on page 5

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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.

26 Comments

  • Reply June 30, 2015

    George Lai

    An interesting read, Lieven.

  • Reply July 2, 2015

    Tronco

    I haven’t been very interested in IEMs. At work I usually use closed Over-Ear headphones and at home (depending on the noise level of my daughters) closed or open ones. I have the Shure SE215 IEMs and while they sound very good and provide good isolation, I always take full size headphones when I can.
    Do you think some good custom IEMs like these would change my perception?

    • Reply July 2, 2015

      Headfonia_L.

      They will for sure but I think you would appreciate an all rounder more

  • Reply March 8, 2017

    Emanuele

    Congratulations,great review! Just a question,how the VE5 works with jazz?

    • Reply March 8, 2017

      Lieven

      You will have great clarity and voices but personally I would look at something smoother

  • Reply June 11, 2017

    Emanuele

    Hi Lieven,I see only now you answered me and I want to thank you. Meanwhile I bought the VE5! I’m really happy with the sound,but I have som doubts about the fit. Can you describe me how do you feel with yours? Sometime I have little pain but I’m afraid if I’ll do a refit I can loose seal. Thank you and sorry to disturb you again.

    • Reply June 12, 2017

      Lieven

      Are you used to wearing CIEMs? Is it a feeling you need to get used to or do they hurt? A custom is not supposed to hurt at all, it should have your ears’ shape.
      You will always feel it being in your ears, but it shouldn’t be uncomfortable. I recommend checking with VE, they can give you good advise on this.

  • Reply June 13, 2017

    Emanuele

    Thank you Lieven,yesterday I checked my ears at the hospital. I need an operation for sinusitis,this could be cause of my pain in the ear,especially the right side. Anyway the comfort with earphones is much better then two weeks ago. I will decide after the operation,thank you.
    Have a nice day!

  • Reply December 24, 2018

    Peter

    Please see my entry for Giveaway 15. Would love to hear these earphones.

  • Reply December 24, 2018

    andrew berkowitz

    Didn’t see a place to comment on Giveaway 15 so doing it here. My Lion heart enVisions these in my Ears… ; )

  • Reply December 24, 2018

    Jobbing

    As @Andrew said.

    This VE &EA Christmas giveaway combo has my name all over it.

  • Reply December 24, 2018

    Daria

    Open the comments in the draw.

  • Reply December 24, 2018

    Furkan Kocyigit

    bayramınız kutlu olsun

  • […] Visit & Review: Vision Ears VE5 – Vocals Vocals Vocals […]

  • Reply December 24, 2018

    Ergin Kesgin

    Comments section for the draw still appears to be closed.

    • Reply December 24, 2018

      Lieven

      No it is open

    • Reply December 25, 2018

      Lim Keith

      It’s still closed

      • Reply December 25, 2018

        Lieven

        What article are you talking about?

      • Reply December 25, 2018

        Lim Keith

        The Christmas giveaway comment section is closed. I cant leave a comment

        • Reply December 25, 2018

          Lieven

          Hundreds of others have no problem on that article and the comments section is open. Try a hard refresh.

  • Reply December 25, 2018

    Lim Keith

    The main giveaway article has comments closed?

  • Reply December 28, 2018

    Mateusz Perich

    Yes Please!

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