BGVP DM8 review : Definitely Mighty 8

PAIRING WITH SOURCES:-

Pairing is not a highly critical aspect of the DM8, it is not a very moody IEM and pairing it with decent sources yields pleasing results. I won’t advice driving just out of a mobile phone. Driven out of my Vivo V19 it sounds edgy and agitated. Notes are less defined and separation is not very good. Using LG G7 extracts better separation and definition but it is unable to provide enough weight and height to the notes.

Using a decent dongle like Shanling UA1 extracts much better output. Using the Earmen Sparrow in balanced mode delivers excellent sound stage and levels the slight bit of V shape shown by weaker sources. Using something like the Shanling M6 brings out the best out of the DM8. Thankfully DM8 is not a power hungry IEM and get very loud without dialing the volume high.

HOW DOES THIS SOUNDS:-

In the lower mid range price bracket BGVP with its DM series has been a force to reckon with. There aren’t many BA bases IEMs that were more popular than the DM6 or DM7. And here comes the DM8 with a huge expectation. I really liked the DM7 for its purity and accuracy. It is a bright sounding IEM with crisp notes across the spectrum. DM8 has it bested in most ways. It uses two extra BA drivers and has 2 for bass, 2 for mid, 2 for highs and 2 for ultra highs incorporated in a 4 way crossover pouring into 4 separate bores.

Even though the DM8 houses Two BAs for bass is does not have a huge lower end, it is fairly balanced without any prioritization. One can argue that the Mid range are slightly in the V but that does not harm its transparency or emphasis. Treble has a bit more energy but not as much as the DM7. Most of the BA based IEMs do not tend to have much added flavor to them and DM8 too is fairly colorless and neutral, even for BA standards, where the DM7 has a crisp and dry notes the DM8 has a slightly wet and heavier notes making it more musical and less analytical. It does well with all genres of music unless you want plenty of oomph with bass.

Burned for more than 200 hours I am using yellow core vocal tips for this review with mixed use of Shanling UA1, Earmen Sparrow and Earmen TR-Amp for this review.

BASS:-

It uses two BA drivers for lower end and unlike Audiofly AF180 mk2 and AF1120 mk2, DM8 make a lot more sense with the volume and punch it delivers. It does not move a lot of air like dynamic drivers but has good amount of feel. If you are looking for a lot of sub-bass you will be a bit disappointed. Much like typical BA driver IEM the DM8 does not have a lot of sub-bass rumble or extension but it has satisfying level of rumble with tracks like “Skepta – Konnichiwa”. It has more rumble than ER-4 series and the 3 IEMs mentioned earlier but the Fibae 4, DUNU SA6 and Audiosense T800 makes sure that DM8 doesn’t take the top spots. It has more rounded mid bass as it maintains similar energy just before the mid-bass region till the upper bass region giving it the required amount of fullness. Do not expect an out of character impact or slam as faster than average decay speed keeps the precipitation well under the overwhelming margin. It does let the notes deliver weighty and thumpy notes while having excellent control. Upper bass has similar kind of energy and does the finishing job without exhibiting any agitation or clumsiness. It has very good texture, much closer to the dynamic drivers of FD5 and 3DT which is remarkable.

MID RANGE:-

DM8 has two BA drivers for the mid range but has one Sonion and one Knowles drivers at work. Initially I was not impressed by the mid range, it sounded dull and lot less cohesive with a projection much lower than the rest of the spectrum but after using the Vocal tips things have improved. I still cannot say this is the most intriguing mid range on an IEM in this price range but this has a few things better than the similarly priced Fiio FD5.

Just like any good BA based IEM DM8 has no problem with intricate details and separation, the whole mid range enjoys very good clarity and transparency. Instruments have the added depth found with EM-5H and CU-Kis which gives DM8 some extra shimmer and more resolution to cymbals and similar instruments. Notes are agile, energetic, weighty and deep while retaining very good crispiness. The biggest plus point of DM8’s mid range is its technicality, the way it manages to deliver micro details of background instruments is praise worthy and the contrasty nature makes it a very capable IEM. It does not veer away from the DM7 when it comes to upper mid range, it has similar energy while having slightly more definition.

When seen from a bit afar the vocals can feel slightly forward compared to the rest of the mid range giving it a bit more pop. Both male and female vocals sound clean and clear but the tonality is slightly on the metallic side, it does not emulate a more organic or warmer tonality like Fibae 4 or AV6 but the texture and emotions portrayed similarly with more notes depth. Decay is perfectly paced with precision and accuracy in mind. It is not thin like the AF180 and fibae 3 or thick like the Shozy Pentacle and Fibae 4.

HIGHS:-

DM8 uses 4 Knowles drivers for the treble region, 2 for highs and 2 for ultra highs and it shows with added emphasis, energy and extension. DM8 goes the more analytical way with this tuning, it does not try to be laid back or smooth but energetic and lively.

The transition phase from upper mid range to lower treble region is well energized while having very good transparency and clarity. DM8 has very good treble extension and do not lose much energy even at higher frequencies. Thank fully things do not get sibilant. DM8 has very good details retrieval. It doesn’t miss out on anything while keeping the timber neutral. Cymbals and pianos have very good transparency, don’t expect it to sound very organic but it has better texture to the notes than the DUNU SA6. Separation and layering is up to the mark with good air between instruments. The treble stage is well spread, assisted by the good sonicality. The treble stage is not very big but still has very good instrument placement, separation and density. If you love treble, tingling instruments and minute details, DM8 is a very good option.

Treble region can feel a bit hot coming from a calmer mid range but it is not as aggressive or agitated as the Fiio FD5. It feels at ease while delivering class leading amount of details.

STAGE AND IMAGING:-

DM8 has interesting imaging while the stage has very good height, good width and average depth. Against the SA6 or Avara AV3 it lacks a bit of treble stage depth and volume.

Back to Imaging, DM8 has its lower end and vocal region placed in the same plane, bass notes are projected higher than the vocals but do not interfere with each other. All other instruments are placed around this. The instruments placed around vocal region have the best space between them. Treble region has very good emphasis with nice energy but do not have enough share of stage. It lacks a bit of dynamic Cue placement but thats a bit too much for an IEM priced under $400.

COMPARISON:-

VS Avara custom AV3:

Avara AV3 has been one of my favorite IEM for under $500. It house 3BA drivers and has the balance I prefer. It has controlled bass with nice sub-bass extension, smaller mid-bass and more precise and faster decay, a bit more forward mid range with slightly less aggressive finishing. Treble region is calmer with equally impressive details and extension. In short it manages to deliver better balance, better coherency, better stage depth and equal amount of details as the wholesomely equipped DM8. The problem with AV3 is its dryness, it sounds dry and thin as the notes have faster decay and lack a bit of body.

DM8 on the other hand has bigger bass body, meatier and fuller, a bit more transparency with background instruments, more treble energy and transparency. Notes have better height but lacks a bit with synergy and the notes feel a bit artificial. It comes with much better accessory set and cable.

Both are excellent at their place but it definitely shows more is not always better.

VS Fiio FD5:

Similarly priced but differently equipped the FD5 has a single 12mm BE coated dynamic driver.

It has similar lower end characteristics but has more volume and bigger punch, the decay speed is slightly slower too. The mid range feels less in the V but does not have the calmness or root level separation of the DM8. It has slightly better attack with instruments placed around the vocal region but the vocal region is not as intriguing as the DM8. The timber is slightly more natural than the DM8. Treble is where these two have some similarities, both has equally impressive extension and energy but the DM8 has better layering and separation.

Yes, the FD5 is very good, but it feels a bit stressed, slightly agitated compared to the DM8. It has better balance and more bass to attract DD lovers. 

VS DUNU SA6:

CONCLUSION:-

BGVP has a lot of success with the DM series. The whole lineup is targeted towards precision and accuracy and they have gone stronger to stronger with every upgrade. DM7 was a bit V shaped while its lack of lower end grunt was evident the DM8 takes care of it with two BA driver delivering better volume and thump. The mid range is lacking a little bit coherencies which the DM7 has but is not dry or thin anymore. The whole package is hard to sideline for someone who want good bass, nice mid range and sparkly, energetic treble region with excellent transparency and details.

The Wooden versions looks mesmerizing, the IEM itself sounds very good, much better than most of its competition.

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ABOUT AUTHOR

Suman Sourav Meher

Suman Sourav Meher

My humble audiophile journey started in 2010, when I was in college, where I fell in love with the elements, nuances, and variations of this mesmerizing world. The ability of tiny earphones to recreate amazing sounds made my bad days tolerable and good days better! Now I am a full-time audiophile with a preference for musical tracks, especially vocals and engaging ones. I must admit I am addicted, but not to drugs or alcohol, but to earphones. Come join me as I share my experiences, bad or good, and let’s have some fun!

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