FiiO F9 Pro Review
The FiiO F9 Pro – which shares exactly the same design of the F9 – has been tweaked slightly. There isn’t a huge amount of difference but enough to make you notice. It sounds cleaner than the F9 and has a better sonic balance – although I could imagine fans of heavy bass or female vocals could well prefer the F9. What the F9 Pro does instead is bring an even sound with an accurate tonal balance. What you will hear through these units is what you have got on your player. ‘When The Levee Breaks’ had less bass impact and overall impact was lessened too – but it enabled me to better make out individual instruments. FiiO have seemingly dialled in a flatter frequently response and although less dramatic perhaps, brings out more in the music.
As a result ‘Mahler’s No 4’ was strikingly vibrant. No undue bass or heightened treble to distract. Just the sound of an orchestra playing at its best. I replayed it time and time again and found it hard to imagine this was a pair of sub earphones. Playing Nick Cave and Kylie Minogue on ‘Where The Wild Roses Grow’ there seemed even more atmosphere – an extra sweetness to Kylie’s voice and more growl to Cave’s voice.
This, I thought, was just how the track should sound. So, on to New Order’s ‘Age Of Consent’ and there was no doubt about – the F9 Pros gave the best rendition of all three earphones. Here the bass drove along well but without too much emphasis, guitar was clear and the vocals not just intelligible but imbued with emotion. Just what you want from an in-ear monitor.