Review - TRN TA1 Max (Sub 50€)

Review - TRI Meteor

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Also available on YouTube in Spanish: Acho Reviews YouTube 

The Tri Meteor have been loaned to me as part of a European tour that has been organized by KBear. As with the TK-2 that I recently reviewed, I was not actually part of the tour but Cqtek, from Hiendportable.com, very kindly spoke with the organizers who allowed him to send the Meteor (and the TK-2) to me while they are here in Spain.

I am obviously very grateful to Cqtek and the organizers for this opportunity. They have not requested anything from me (I haven’t even had any contact with the organizers), therefore I will include the links that Cqtek included in his review (which, as usual, I have not yet read yet, except for the first paragraph to see the links).

This means that I will do my best to be as honest and impartial as possible but you you should always consider the fact that it has not cost me anything to try out these IEMs.

Links published by Cqtek...

Purchase link: https://es.aliexpress.com/item/4001030551238.html

Link to store: https://kbear.es.aliexpress.com/store/5017064

Review by Cqtek: https://hiendportable.com/tri-meteor-english-review/

(all links are non-affiliate)


Intro…

I have not tried a set of Tri IEMs before and I really didn’t know what to expect. Reading the first paragraph of Cqteks review, I found out that these are a hybrid set of IEMs, featuring a DD and a BA, and that the cable that came with them is actually the Grace-S cable. That is the limit of what I know about these IEMs going into the review.

Well, that and the price of them, after a quick search online, seeming to come in around 100 to 120€, with the cable costing almost the same.

I am glad that his review mentioned that it was and aftermarket cable, as I obviously didn’t get to open them, so I couldn’t know what was included. My first thought was “wow, this is the cable they include??”.

I also want to mention that I have only spent a week with both the TK-2 and the Meteor IEMs, it has also turned out to be quite a busy week, spending quite a bit of time with the TK-2, so I have not spent quite as much time with them as I would usually like to. I still got plenty of time to listen to them but haven’t really had much time to do any direct comparisons with other models or play around with more sources. 

My review is based exclusively on using them with the Gryphon and the Go Blu. I didn’t even test them with the TK-2 as I didn’t feel that using a set of unknown IEMs with an unknown source would be the most productive use of time as far as creating a review.


Presentation…

As I said, I didn’t get to open these so I can’t vouch that everything included is actually what is included with a retail set, but I believe it is, with the addition of the Grace-S cable.

The IEMs were shipped to me inside a semi rigid case with the Tri logo, with the Grace-S cable attached. I think that this case (and obviously the cable) are the only things that are not included in the usual package, due to there being another case inside the actual box.

The box is rather large and the contents are fairly impressive for a set of 100€ IEMs. Inside the box there are 5 sets of coloured silicone tips, plus another 3 sets in a bag, a brown (faux) leather carrying case, a single ended cable, a microfiber cloth and a little brush for cleaning purposes.

I didn’t actually use anything that was inside the box (I stuck with the Grace-S cable and my own tips), but the contents are certainly enough to not have any complaints at this price.


Build and aesthetics…

Let's start with the cable. It’s a rather chunky one. It is good looking and uses good hardware, however, it is heavy and is on the thick side for my personal tastes. I like well built cables but I mentioned in the S12 review that the included (balanced) cable was a little big for me, this one is much bigger. Therefore, I have no complaints about the cable from a functional or build point of view, but it is not a cable I would choose personally.

The IEMs are quite a generic shape, reminding me of things like Thieaudio, although maybe a little bigger. I have no issues as far as comfort, although the nozzle is a little chunky, but the right tips (I ended up using the Crystal’s) help with a slightly deeper fit and while they are not the most comfortable IEMs I have ever worn, they are not bad and I can wear them for extended periods. 

As far as build, they seem to be well built and don’t have any glaring issues that jump out at me. The aesthetics are also quite pleasant, with a black tinted, transparent shell, and a black faceplate sporting the logo in silver along with some silver swirls.

I can’t say there is anything that makes me very passionate about them, good or bad, so I have no complaints.


Sound…

The first thing that stood out to me about the Meteor is the smoothness of their sound. They have a warmish tone to them without actually sounding dark or too blunt, something that I do find with a lot of IEMs with a low end focus.

Before getting to the usual sound categories, let's take a quick look at the graph in comparison to my personal preference…

(all measurements of IEMs are available on achoreviews.squig.link)

Now it’s not difficult to see that the low end is quite a bit above my usual preferences in this zone, all the way from the subbass up through the midbass. If I was to just look at the graph of these IEMs, I would probably immediately think “no thanks” and move on. However, even though the low end is boosted, it doesn’t come across as the center of attention and it is kept very clean and articulate. 

The subbass extends low and with authority, giving “Chameleon” all the bass it needs, but it still sounds articulate. While the low end rumble is no doubt there, it doesn’t overpower the rest of the bass frequencies.

In fact, the remaining bass frequencies, in other words the midbass, is also rather boosted, but as with the subbass, it still manages to not take over the whole sound signature. The dynamic driver does a very good job of keeping things clean and coherent. Listening to “I Fink U Freaky”, expected the bottom end to take the rest of the frequencies hostage with such a bass boost but it is not the case. Even with “When the party’s over”, the parts where the bass comes in strong, Billie’s vocals are still clear in the mix. 

Moving into the mids, I was surprised that they keep a clarity that I really didn’t expect. Now, clarity shouldn’t be confused with “detailed”, as I feel that the mids are not really that detailed, in fact, I feel that the whole sound is general is rather smooth, throughout the whole range.

Vocals have a smoothness to them that, while not as detailed as I enjoy from many other sets, make for a very pleasurable listen. From “I Concentrate on You” to “Strange Fruit”, female vocals have a nice warmth and body to them, without becoming dull. Male vocals are just as smooth, although listening to “Hallelujah” and “These Bones”, they did give me an impression of taking just a step backwards in comparison to female vocals, but still, they are very pleasurable.

The higher ranges continue with the smoothness, without any specific sharp peaks or even sibilance, proven by the usual “Code Cool” test. The extension is maybe not the greatest but I feel that the general sound signature also adds to the sensation of roll off in this regard.

As I mentioned a moment ago, details are not the strong point of the Meteor, they don’t present you with tiny nuances, especially with regards to  background details, but that really doesn’t seem to be the vibe they are going for anyway.

Soundstage does seem to be on the higher side of average, not exactly huge but still more than the majority of IEMs, with image placement that is very well done. Maybe this gives a sensation of being better due to the fact that I am not searching for the placement of all the tiny details, just the larger images in general. “La Luna” is a very pleasurable experience with the Meteor.


Conclusion…

The Meteor are quite far from  my preferred tuning for a set of IEMs, yet they are a very pleasurable set of IEMs. I found that I was very happy to listen to a lot of my preferred music genres while doing other things, they didn’t make me focus on the music and dissect it, they made me enjoy listening to music as I went about my day to day.

They actually remind me quite a bit of a set of Sony speakers that I have had for a long time and have given me many hours of joy (although they have not been out of storage for quite some time now). They are not something I turn to when I want to “experience” the music, they are miles behind other speakers that I use, but they are something that always brings a smile to my face when they just fill the room with great BGM.

The Meteor have left me with a similar sensation, they are not a set of IEMs that I would usually turn to but I have not found myself not enjoying the music at any time while using them.