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Dunu DN-23 Landmine Review

5


Added Jun 2013

Details: Mid-range dynamic-driver earphone from Dunu
MSRP: est. $80 (manufacturer’s page)
Current Price: $69 from ebay.com$90 from amazon.com
Specs: Driver: Dynamic | Imp: 16Ω | Sens: 120 dB | Freq: 20-20k Hz | Cable: 3.9′ L-plug
Nozzle Size: 4mm | Preferred tips: Hybrid-style single-flanges
Wear Style: Straight down or over-the-ear

Accessories (5/5) – Single-flange regular (3 sizes), hybrid-style (3 sizes), and bi-flange silicone tips, shirt clip, ¼” adapter, airline adapter, soft carrying pouch, clamshell carrying case, and integrated cable wrap
Build Quality (4.5/5) – As with the cheaper DN-22M, the construction is extremely solid. The metal housings have great finish and the cable is smoother and more tangle-resistant than with some of the other Dunu earphones
Isolation (3.5/5) – Very good for a dynamic-driver earphone
Microphonics (4/5) – Pretty good when worn cable-down; excellent when worn over-the-ear
Comfort (3.5/5) – The housings are one the heavy side and flare out to hold the drivers, which can lead to mild discomfort in the long term. The earphones lend themselves well to over-the-ear wear

Sound (7.5/10) – Like the entry-level DN-22M Detonator, the DN-23 Landmine is a warm and smooth-sounding earphone reminiscent of Dunu’s popular Trident model. The bass of the DN-23 falls in the realm of “enhanced”, with more boost compared to the Trident but not quite as much as with the Detonator. It is very satisfying in both impact and depth but also rather clean and controlled, considering the quantity. Though the DN-23 sounds a little more full-bodied than both, bass tightness is actually about on-par with the Brainwavz M5 and VSonic GR02 Bass Edition.

Due in part to the more controlled bass, the DN-23 has clearer and more prominent mids compared to the DN-22M. The midrange presentation is spot-on – not overly forward, but not as recessed as with the Brainwavz M5 and VSonic GR02 BE. Detail retrieval is good and the midrange gives way to equally smooth treble. As with the lower-end DN-22M, the treble is inoffensive, without a hint of grain or sibilance. The DN-23 is not as rolled-off, however, which again leads to improved accuracy over the DN-22M.

The presentation of the DN-23 is spacious and well-rounded. The soundstage is larger and less intimate than with the Trident and DN-22M, and the earphones have a fairly open, airy, and uncongested sound. The DN-23 still isn’t as spacious as Dunu’s flagship Tai Chi model, but it’s not too far behind and competes well with other sets in its price bracket.

Value (8.5/10) – With its stellar build quality and smooth, easy-going sound, the Dunu DN-23 Landmine is difficult not to like. It may not be as accurate and spacious as the higher-end DN-19 Tai Chi, but it’s an easy recommendation for fans of warm and smooth sound.

Pros: Fantastic build quality; well-accessorized; smooth, enhanced-bass sound
Cons: Housings a bit on the heavy side


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About Author

Living in the fast-paced city of Los Angeles, ljokerl has been using portable audio gear to deal with lengthy commutes for the better part of a decade. He spends much of his time listening to music and occasionally writes portable audio reviews across several enthusiast sites, focusing mostly on in-ear earphones.

5 Comments

  1. Exigence on

    I’m having a hard time choosing between this Dunu DN-23 Landmine ($60), the JVC HA-FXT90 ($55) and the HiSoundAudio Wooduo 2 ($48)

    (Costs are on ebay/amazon and on amazon I have $30 giftcard)

    • ljokerl on

      That’s a pretty easy one since they all have different sound signatures

      Wooduo 2 – Monstrous bass, especially subbass. Pretty balanced otherwise with a bit of edginess in the treble. Great if you’re a basshead but otherwise there are better options.
      FXT90 – a little v-shaped with a mid-bass boost and some treble sparkle. Still more balanced than Wooduo 2 and much more refined overall. At $55 it’s going to be hard to beat.
      Landmine – a little bassier than the FXT90 but not a bass monster. Very smooth and pleasant sound, but perhaps lacking a “wow” factor. Great if you’re sensitive to enhanced treble or are worried about harshness/sibilance, though, and it has excellent build quality.

      In short, for huge bass, get the Wooduo 2. For smoothness and build quality, get the Landmine. For everything else, get the FXT90.

      • Exigence on

        Which would you recommend for someone who would use these to listen to things like Daft Punk, Justice, Danger, LCD Soundsystem, Ratatat, and some dubstep?

        • Exigence on

          And what about the DN-19 Tai Chi ($65)

          • ljokerl on

            It really depends on your sound signature preference – for the same genres two different people could like pretty different earphones. The FXT90 is the most versatile of the ones you’re looking at so if you’re not sure exactly what you’re looking for those would be the ones to get, followed by the Tai Chi.

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