Rank #14: Rhapsodio Galaxy V2

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Bass
The Galaxy’s bass is a highlight. It isn’t as impactful as that of Vega or the Dream, so bassheads shouldn’t expect brain-shattering power. But it has more than sufficient quantity to get the rest of us going. And most importantly, it’s a complete package. It reaches low, hits hard, and the balance between sub- and mid-bass is exceptional. Plus it has all those qualities we love from a good dynamic driver: the natural decay, and a beautiful tone.

But it’s also compact, so it nevertheless has good speed for a dynamic driver. Importantly, the mid-bass delivers its hits without warming the stage – it’s a rather controlled bass. It’s articulate in its attack, and highly resolved. Tones of the bass player sound exactly like that – individual, articulate notes that determine the pace, without slowing it down. This is a bass that comes scarily close to perfection; in fact, I think it might be the best in this shootout. It combines the texture and decay of a dynamic driver, with the control and speed of a balanced armature, seemingly bringing the best of both worlds – without compromising.

Midrange
The Galaxy has an almost linear midrange up until the 5 Khz peak. While this ordinarily should amount in a neutral sound, the peak plays such a detrimental role due its sheer size; it’s a good 10 dB higher than the lower and center midrange. The peak has its pros, as well as its cons. It provides a more realistic version of brightness, a clear and articulated sound, different from the more common 7 KHz peaks we see in multi BA setups. But that doesn’t mean the sound is natural altogether – it’s an additional amount of brightness, nevertheless. Notes and vocals might be highly articulated, there’s also a trace of edginess.

In addition, the lower midrange is rather laidback. This effectively attenuates the subsection of a note, resulting in a leaner note structure, as well as more laidback vocals in terms of stage positioning. The general body of vocals is on the leaner side, with their emphasis towards articulation. As a result, they lack a bit of solidity and central focus, although the effect is most pronounced for warmer, male vocals. There’s still a certain sweetness and crispness in female vocals. Even so, it’s a highly detailed vocal presentation.


The upper midrange is very clear, and highly transparent. The stroke of a violin, the chord of an acoustic guitar – it resonates with a certain beauty, resulting from the purity of the note. It’s a tuning that works wonderfully for higher pitched string instruments, and especially piano’s sound quite true. But a deeper-sounding cello or electric guitar on the other hand might miss a bit of warmth and body, and in general instruments are brighter in tone.

Treble
While the treble response is very linear, the enhanced upper midrange results in a brighter treble tone. After all, the 5 KHz region borders on the lower treble. When done right it results in more of a ‘natural’ form of clarity, but it’s also an area that is often toned down, as it’s sensitive to listen to. Boosting the upper midrange results in a highly articulated sound – it’s a region that jumps out to catch your attention. But it isn’t the most smooth in its note release.

Still, it’s not a harsh or piercing treble altogether, although the sound might become fatuiging for sensitive listeners. It’s highly detailed, and well defined. And while its decay isn’t as quick as some of the up-tempo BA designs, it doesn’t feel sluggish altogether. For trebleheads, the Galaxy is a delight. There’s everything one might desire. The high resolution and clarity brings out an abundance of finer detail. There’s a good sense of airiness on the stage, with sufficient space between the tones. It’s a treble that will reach out as far as you want it to go, that can shine and sparkle. 

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About Author

Nic is currently in pursuit of a PhD degree in social neuropsychology, while trying not to get too distracted by this hobby. In pursuit of theoretical knowledge by day, and audiophile excellence at night. Luckily for him, both activities are not mutually exclusive which helps to lighten the workload. Always on the go, Nic's enthusiasm for hi-fi is focused on all chains of the portable system: iems, cables and daps.

2 Comments

  1. Lord Sinister on

    Excellent review! How would you compare to something like the LZ A4 or FLC8, especially the lower regions? Thanks.

    • flinkenick on

      Thank you dear Lord, however I’m going to have to disappoint you there since I haven’t heard either.

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