Until now, I’ve yet to review many truly premium Chi-fi earphone so the BR5 MKII really intrigued me. And that’s because these smaller brands usually leverage value as their greatest asset yet with a $300 USD asking price, the BR5 MKII is hardly for the faint of heart. It takes a lot of trust to leap into this price range and while value orientated Chi-fi IEMs like the KZ ZS5 can be rewarding impulse purchases, the BR5 is a heartier commitment.
Rose may not be a household name, but they’ve made waves on Head-fi as a Chinese audio manufacturer that’s a step above (and with pricing to match). Their dual driver earbud, the Mojito, cemented their name in the minds of many and pioneered their very neutral orientated house sound which pervades throughout their entire product lineup of varying price and form factor. The BR5 was one of their first attempts at an in-ear design and a pretty premium one at that. And with a 5-driver design utilizing components from Knowles and Zsound, the updated BR5 MKII promises strong sound quality comparable to significantly more expensive. Let’s see what Rose’s flagship armature in-ear is all about.
I would like to thank Chi Kong Hui from Penonaudio very much for his quick communication and for providing me with the Rose BR5 MKII for the purpose of review. All words are my own and there is no monetary incentive for a positive review. Despite receiving the earphones free of cost, I will attempt to be as objective as possible in my evaluation.
The BR5 MKII comes within a nice hard box that magnetically latches open. The latch has a metal plate engraved with the company slogan and interestingly, the rear showcases that the earphones have been “designed and made in China”. It’s definitely intriguing to see Rose brandish this like a selling point, reinforcing that we can’t generalize the quality of a product simply by its country of origin.
Inside is the BR5 MKII and some ear tips presented nicely within a foam cutout. Rose also includes a plastic case filled foams and a shirt clip in addition to a soft pouch and Westone-vault imitation hard case in the two boxes to the right. The hard case is exceptional, the vault case is easily one of my favourites and Rose’s derivative is just as compelling; perfectly sized, immensely protective and well presenting with a metal Rose plate at the top. Inside is a silver plated cable which is also of excellent quality.
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