Effect Audio x Music Sanctuary Eos – Enter the Dragon

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Sound Impressions

The Eos is built upon a simple philosophy: Cleanliness and control. Although copper cables have – in recent years – become strongly associated with modifiers like “warm”, “rich” and “tube-like”, the Eos is a product that decisively breaks the mould. Like the Ares II before it, the Eos prides itself in its technical performance; displaying excellent treble extension, separation and finesse in any IEM it’s attached to. However, as a result of its internal tweaks, the Eos surpasses the Ares II’s technical accomplishments by a palpable margin. In terms of soundstage expansion, dimensional definition, imaging accuracy, and headroom, the Eos respectably exceeds its predecessor; delivering a presentation that’s more open, effortless and resolving, whilst abandoning the Ares II’s more focused, dynamic, and (sometimes) more fatiguing soundscape in the process.

The bass is where the Eos’s quest for control – and subversion of expectations – begin. Where one would normally find a flabby, bold and warm bottom-end, the Eos instead opts for tightness, definition and compactness; focusing bloated slams into delectable jabs. The Eos has decent extension, but its focus is certainly directed towards the upper-bass. Kick drums are kissed with air, and bass guitars are grittier and snappier than they are bellowing or guttural. Although it isn’t the richest or most atmospheric bass, it compensates with great technical performance. Due to its more linear approach towards low-end presentation – and brilliant treble extension – the Eos’s bass showcases fantastic layering. Whether its the kick and the bass in ensemble bands or rhythm tracks within an 808 beat, the Eos is capable of separation and resolution unmatched in its price range. Its a presentation that could use a tiny bit of fun, but the Eos exhibits its low-end with a no-nonsense approach that’s rare and worthy of praise.

The Eos’s midrange defines its timbre, tirelessly balancing naturalness and transparency. Due to the Eos’s leaner lower-midrange – and sparkly upper-mids – instruments carry great sheen. Percussion and piano experience an increase in fundamental transience, and a decrease in harmonic decay. Instruments sound more dynamic and clear-cut, but accents – like tom hits and power chords – don’t sound as satisfying and complete as they should, due to a lack of overtones. Vocals also display impressive articulation at the cost of a completely accurate timbre. They sound a tad brighter than natural; more throat-y than chest-y. But, where the Eos excels is in note body and weight. Although the Eos’s middle registers are slightly top-heavy, they never approach thin, nor do they ever sound artificial; voices still sound hefty and cellos have guts to spare. Separation and imaging are both top-class; spatially resolving back-up singers, horn sections and string quartets marvellously. Despite its neutral tilt, the Eos imbues its midrange with a palpable sense of weight and a respectable share of density. Although transparency, clarity and resolution are its stand-out traits, the naturalness that the Eos injects into the mix should be applauded too.

However, with that said, the Eos’s greatest achievement is absolutely its treble. Proper extension and remarkable linearity fuel the Eos’s fantastic technical performance, giving its stage a stable black background. Again, spatial resolution impresses; deftly defining heaps of micro-detail across the entire length of the stage. Secondary sounds like foot hi-hats, palm-muted guitar strums, and percussive ornaments ring through clearly without disturbing the ensemble. Equipped with a lifted upper treble, the Eos’s top-end adds cleanliness and energy throughout the whole spectrum, without the sibilance that would normally accompany an upper-mid or lower-treble peak. This rise in the air frequencies can add a slight tinge of graininess to cymbals, electric guitars, and vocals in recordings that already have an emphasis in that area. But, it hardly ever comes close to harshness. Sticking to theme, it is a tad brighter than natural in tone, but the Eos’s treble maintains respectable heft; body and weight are as present as ever. The Eos’s top-end is striking without stridence, fast without fatigue and clear without offense. It’s a treble that gifts an entry-level cable with raw performance, and perfectly concludes its signature with very minimal theatrics along the way.

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About Author

Church-boy by day and audio-obsessee by night, Daniel Lesmana’s world revolves around the rhythms and melodies we lovingly call: Music. When he’s not behind a console mixing live for a congregation of thousands, engineering records in a studio environment, or making noise behind a drum set, you’ll find him on his laptop analysing audio gear with fervor and glee. Now a specialist in custom IEMs, cables and full-sized headphones, he’s looking to bring his unique sensibilities - as both an enthusiast and a professional - into the reviewer’s space; a place where no man has gone before.

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