Utilizing double magnetism, double cavity, and double voice coil, TFZ No.3 offers a smooth and non-tiring listening experience to fellow audiophiles.
This could be good news and bad news to fellow audiophiles – more choices and too many choices.
The Fragrant Zither (TFZ) is a China-based IEMs manufacturer that focuses on a wide range of IEMs. From the top of the line – Tx Bear 10 to the entry-level – T1 Galaxy, TFZ aims to provide a listening solution for audiophiles – be it entry-level or top of the line. We will review on TFZ No.3, a midrange IEM from TFZ.
- »Sub-bass rumbles
- »Detachable cable
- »Sturdy nozzle
- »Rigid acrylic shell
- »Shell could be too big for certain users
- »Highs might not be sufficiently energetic
TFZ No.3 has a very simple but modern packaging. Nowadays, IEMs packagings are getting more complicated and a lot of manufacturers are throwing in less useful accessories to make their packagings look grand.
I am glad that TFZ focuses on a simple yet useful packaging.
The outer layer of the packaging is a white hard sleeve with the branding on it. Removing the sleeve, one can immediately spot the TFZ No.3. Underneath the TFZ No.3, you can find a box containing the cable for No.3. Besides that, there is an accessories box. Opening the accessories box, you can expect:
- 3 pairs of wide bore silicone ear tips
- 3 pairs of narrow bore silicone ear tips
- A white soft pouch
- A cloth clip
- Driver: 11.4mm Double magnetism, double cavity, double voice coil ,tesla magnetic group
- Magnetism material: NdFeB N50
- Diaphragm: Diamond diaphragm
- Frequency range: 5Hz-40000Hz
- Impedance: 20ohm
- Sensitivity: 108dB
- Cable material: 0.78mm detachable silver-plated cable
The build quality of TFZ No.3 is excellent – rigid and sturdy. The crystal clear acrylic shell allows users to see through the 11.4mm dynamic drivers in the shell. Facing the outer side is a silver faceplate – eyecatching.
The brass nozzle improves the overall build quality of this IEMs. As mentioned in my earlier review of Simgot EK3 and Campfire Audio Polaris V2, IEMs nozzle is always the weakest part of the IEMs. TFZ successfully mitigate this issue by implementing a brass nozzle.
On top of the shell, users can find a non-recessed 0.78mm 2-pin connector. This implementation may create some problems during cable-rolling. However, after testing several aftermarket cables, the protruded 2-pin connector does not create any hectic problem for me.
The cable provided in the packaging is a 3.5mm unbalanced terminated to 0.78mm 2-pin silver plated copper (SPC) cable. The cable is coated using a layer of rubber as a strain relief to protect the cable. There is no chin slider on this cable but due to the softness of the cable, it does not create serious microphonics when I am moving around.
The overall fitting of TFZ No.3 is average. The slightly large shell stretches my ear a little horizontally. I can get a good isolation and this made No.3 my travel companion during this review period. There is a vent to mitigate driver flex in the inner side of the shell so it minimizes the noises from surrounding to disturb the overall listening experience.
The shell might be a little too huge for those with smaller ears especially females. I could not find a good fit with the provided ear tips but ear tips rolling can be easily done. Based on my testing, SpinFit CP100, MandarinEs Symbio W and Final Audio Type E ear tips can fit perfectly on No.3.
I do not have much experience with Chi-Fi except for major brands like FiiO, iBasso, and Simgot so I am a little unsure what to expect initially.
The first impression on TFZ No.3 is jaw-dropping
The overall sound signature is at the warmer side, making No.3 comfortable for long listening. The soundstage is sufficiently wide and the depth is amazing. Thanks to the high-performance dynamic driver.
Due to the good performance in the width and depth on the soundstage, the separation and layering are produced in an accurate manner. The fidelity and clarity are above average for an IEMs within USD$200 price range.
TFZ No.3 has a very good sub-bass extension. It rumbles upon call. I would definitely recommend this IEMs to bassheads. I believe it can fulfill their craves in the lows especially sub-bass.
It is hard for you to stop yourself from stomping your feet together with the rhythm when the bass kicks in
The attack and decay speed of the bass is above average for a dynamic driver. The speed is at a sweet spot – giving the overall texture a sense of warmness and emotions. Due to the good layering, no bleeding towards other frequency regions is spotted. This creates a good overall fidelity and I enjoy the rumbles from No.3.
The mids is well-positioned in the center of the stage – neither too shouty nor too laid back. This makes the overall presentation enjoyable one. The mids body is full and lush. Due to the air injected by the dynamic drivers and the smooth transition from the lows, the mids is warm, full of emotions and breathy.
For vocals, the body is rich. For those who love coffee, I would like to describe this as my favorite beverage in Singapore – Kopi Gao (Americano with an extra shot of espresso).
The presentation is very energetic and the warmth provided the emotions – it is like a real scene.
The highs are a little bit shy among the three frequency spectrum. This could be a common characteristic for a warm IEMs. There is no sibilance found during the review period of almost a month. This could bring a fatigue-free listening experience for users.
Although the presentation is polite and conserved, it does have a good extension without disturbances and distortions.
There is sufficient air injected in the treble – making the presentation airy and hence improving the fidelity of the overall performance.
The TFZ No.3 is a great choice for those who want an entry-level IEMs that can fulfill their bass cravings. For those who are interested, you can grab it now at USD$109 on Amazon. There are another two designs – carbon fiber faceplate and TI version. User can choose based on their personal preference.
TFZ provides an affordable alternative for new audiophiles to enter the world of high fidelity. With the warmth injected while not compromising the clarity, TFZ No.3 might be setting a new benchmark for entry-level IEMs.
Well done, TFZ!