After a few years in the hobby, having tried different stuff, I kinda got to the point where I equate quality of sound to be proportional to the price you paid for the gear. It kinda makes sense to some point really, thinking that expensive gears would require pricier components (rarer materials perhaps?) not to include the cost of R&D spent. It is pretty reasonable really, especially for brands that are quite known in the industry for some time.
However, for the past several years, an influx of affordable entry-level IEMs and earbuds arrived with China leading this sort of revolution wherein a few did create a niche in the market which eventually turned into favorites of the masses given their excellent build and great sound. Some of those went on to establish their brands and ended to become crowd favorites among the enthusiasts.
Recently, among these China brands, a relatively new player called BGVP released several new offers, one of which I received a review unit called the DX3s and this seems to offer quite an interesting build. As to the sound, I had to take the said earbud to at least 50 hours of burn-in, but my initial impression leads me to think that this might appeal a certain group of enthusiasts given its tonality.
Follow me then as I take this baby for a spin.
Perhaps the best thing about the DX3s is the build of the earpieces. I mean, sure there are others in the market that has such excellent, crafty designs that are indeed impressive, but the DX3s simply scored by the material used on the earpieces. Upon holding the earpieces, you can feel some premium due to the weight of the metal pieces, which seems to be very sturdy. I can see this is where BGVP spent some cost in production.
It is also interesting to see the rear part to use something like an aluminum grill which poses as the vent for the dynamic drivers of the DX3s.
I also liked how the cable was designed; it is not exactly unique as other IEMs and earbuds in the market also carry a braided cable, but the color scheme of the cable is pretty classy to me. My only concern though is that the wire has to be kept properly stored, as any fold on the wire might mess up how it looks.
The splitter seems to be pretty decent, what with the plastic make with a chin slider included in the wire.
My gripe on the build only goes to the plug, of which I think could have made of better material. I mean, it is not as if I am asking for an Eidolic plug to be used with the DX3s, but there’s a lot in the market that could have been a better option. Plus to be honest, I am not digging the branding on the plug; it seems that it will eventually fade based on how it is used. Strain relief on the plug is also a bit questionable if you will use the DX3s with your mobile phone and you would normally put your phone on your pants’ pocket.
Overall, fairly decent to good build, but had the plug been better, I would have rated the build of the DX3s as great.
I would say the tonality of the DX3s is around the area of being mid-centric, with bass a little conservative and the highs somewhat satisfactorily present. One issue though is the size of the earpieces, which (depending on the ears of the user) may cause some fit issues on your ears. Of course, this is an earbud, and it will definitely not have a seal similar to in-ear monitors, but I had to push and hold the earpieces against my ears to reach what’s supposedly is the best sound it can yield. Some foams might help, but I still find the earpieces falling off if I make a sudden movement.
In my assessment, the sub-bass seems to be a bit shallow sounding compared to the Bejo V2, with mid-bass offering some punch that I find satisfactory.
Mid-range should be the strength of the DX3s. It sounds rich, well detailed, and stretches up quite well without the upper mids sounding strained nor shouty even if playing high-pitched vocals. I kinda liked how the mid-range sounds especially while using the Aune M1S.
Highs aren’t as bright as what I would normally like off my earbuds, but then the DX3s has a nice sparkle that should be pretty sufficient for usual listeners. The treble sounded particularly nice with the HM-901S; it sounded smooth and played the analoguish sound of the HM-901S to its advantage.
Soundstage seems pretty good with the DX3s in terms of depth and width. Imaging is excellent, I liked how the elements of the tracks I used to be defined pretty well in terms of spacing and layering.
As with the bass, the DX3s seems to have improved by using a bit darker/bassier source. I kind of felt the boost using the Sony NW-A35, but I would like to see for myself if I used an A25 with the DX3s if the sub-bass would sound deeper.
The Ways (Khalid & Swae Lee, Black Phanter OST)
Beyond (Daft Punk, Random Access Memory)
Down With The Sickness (Disturbed, The Sickness)
Wade In The Water (Eva Cassidy, The Best Of Eva Cassidy)
I did mention earlier about the size of the earpieces, and it would perhaps be the one leading gripe that I have with the DX3s. As earbuds doesn’t have the kind of seal one would, what could be worse is an earbud that has some fit issues. Maybe for some the size would be just right, but I guess given the size of my earlobes, the size of the DX3s may already be a tad too much for most users. However, as I saw that using foams on the DX3s can do some wonders, this may not be as much as a gripe compared to wearing the earbud bare.
I am hoping that I am wrong with the plug, but it does feel like it is the kind that would easily wear out and may end up being loose when plugged into a jack. Great thing that the cable is detachable to the earpieces, as this allows users some option to replace or upgrade it to a better one.
Sub-bass may be left undesirable for some users, but as to the foams solution to the fit, I guess, it will also help to have foams to improve the bass of the DX3s. I tried using a thicker one and I felt the significant difference between having none.
The BGVP DX3s is a good pair of earbuds and should work really well with those who have an affinity to great mid-range. Given its price ($49), it should be a great choice if you are on a hunt for something durable with excellent mid-range and fun soundstage.