Review: Campfire Audio Supermoon

Closing thoughts

My journey to Supermoon started off quite differently to most. I was looking for an IEM to use as a guinea pig for my first custom, and chronicle the experience for you fine readers. That I found Supermoon to be one of the most engaging, resolving, inviting IEMs I’ve ever heard is pure happenstance, and a wonderful one at that.

Everything about Supermoon, for me, is ground-breaking. It’s my first CIEM, sure, but more than that it’s the first time I’ve heard planar technology shrunk down to IEM form. Not only that, it’s outperforming full-size planar headphones that pride themselves on driver size and magnet power, with a driver the size of a fingernail. 

How Ken Ball and his team have managed to coax this level of performance out of a new and probably experimental driver is anyone’s guess, but I have a newfound respect for the creative minds behind this rather quirky company and its quirky products. 

Overall, I find Supermoon’s combination of engaging, coherent tonality and world-class technical ability to be one of the high watermarks of IEM evolution. Sure it has some issues – a touch of glare, a treble niggle here or there, and a more genteel take on dynamic contrast. Like Ken says, it’s ‘far from perfect’. But show me a perfect IEM and I’ll show you one that doesn’t exist.

Are any of its issues showstoppers? That’s not for me to say on your behalf. I can only tell you that, from my perspective, the pros far outweigh the cons. 

Supermoon is likely not for you if you prefer a neutral sound with less bass focus and a more even-keeled midrange and treble. It’s also not for you if you want a thick, luscious sound that romanticises everything you hear. And it’s not ideal if you mainly listen to compressed files, or low bitrate streaming, directly out your phone or computer. Supermoon is unforgiving in how it presents music, so be mindful of what you feed it. 

All that said, if you’re the type of person wanting something completely different from the vast majority of high-end IEMs out there, Supermoon is just the tonic. It won’t wow you with textbook-perfect instrument timbre, but it’ll seduce you with how those instruments sound alive regardless. If your water is modern pop and indie angels like Lana Del Rey or Lily Kershaw, Supermoon will take you straight to the well. And if you demand the very highest technical performance from your high-end IEMs, Supermoon delivers in spades. 

A friend of mine recently called Supermoon a market disruptor, and I couldn’t agree more. I’ve heard none better at its price, and I’ve heard few better at twice and three times the cost. If you want the best value high-end IEM money can buy right now, this is it.  

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ABOUT AUTHOR

Picture of Guy Lerner

Guy Lerner

An avid photographer and writer 'in real life', Guy's passion for music and technology created the perfect storm for his love of portable audio. When he's not playing with the latest and greatest head-fi gear, he prefers to spend time away from the hobby with his two (almost) grown kids and wife in the breathtaking city of Cape Town, and traveling around his native South Africa.

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