Perfect Seal has been on the scene for quite a while, with one of their earlier models reviewed here on the Headphone List by average_joe, while I reviewed the first model of their new lineup, the AR6, a while back. Perfect Seal is headed by Mike Martinez, who does most of the tuning. Over the time we’ve chatted, I’ve come to know Mike as a classic strong but silent personality: a man of few words, but confident in his tuning and molding ability. And credit where credit is due, he has done reshells of ciems for friends that had been denied for having too difficult ear shapes by other renowned manufacturers. And with a brief reshell time of about two weeks under normal circumstances, Mike has become my go to guy for reshells.
The AR6 I reviewed before was primarily characterized by a uniquely spacious soundstage, combined with a natural tonality. Its wide and spacious stage was in part defined by a light mid-bass presentation. I enjoyed its clear sound and neutral tonality, but it left me wanting for a bit more power – I do like my bass a little bit north of neutral. So now almost a year later, Mike has returned with Deca. He was already content with the tuning of the AR6, so he kept the tuning of his new flagship close – just pumping up the bass. Thanks Mike, appreciate it.
Perfect Seal Deca
-Drivers: 10 BA drivers; 2 low, 4 mid, 2 high, 2 super high
-Design: 5-way passive crossover, 3 sound bores
-Frequency range: 10 Hz – 20 KHz
-Impedance: 48 Ohm
-Sensitivity: 116 dB
Deca comes with your standard ciem starter kit: a cleaning tool, a sturdy Peli case, and the twisted black OFC wire you get with most boutique manufacturers (e.g. Custom Art, Lime Ears, etc.). The basic essentials; but in all fairness, the only possible extra options for a custom are some adapters you never end up using. At least I never have.
Build and Design
Deca is slightly on the larger side, and fills up a good portion of the outer ear. However, Mike informed me it was partially due to the shape of the ear impressions, rather than out of necessity to fit the drivers. The fit was slightly tight in the beginning, but comfortable and snug after a brief adjustment period. Insertion depth is around average. The isolation is excellent, and overall there isn’t anything to fault. Perfect Seal offers a nice selection of faceplates and colors, which are always included in the base price. I let Mike choose the design, though I suggested I’d be cool with a copy of the fluorescent yellow demo model he posted on the Perfect Seal facebook page (check it out). You might not expect it, but it looks pretty awesome, and let’s be honest – fluorescent yellow is pretty much a first, at least for me. He ignored that, and went with a nice custom combination of a light grey shell with blue and grey swirl, which turned out very nice as well.