DUNU Falcon-C

Rating:
4.25/5,
  1. ustinj
    Dunu Falcon C: beautifully designed, resolving IEM
    Written by ustinj
    Published Jan 13, 2018 at 1:49 AM
    4.5/5,
    Pros - excellent resolution and detail, extension in both extremes, elegant and attractive design, build quality, tip selection
    Cons - sticky cable, slightly unnatural midrange timbre
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    I'd like to thank Vivian from Dunu for providing me with the Falcon C to sample and review. All words are my own and my honest opinion.​

    PACKAGING & ACCESSORIES

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    The Falcon C comes in a metallic silver cardboard sleeve, which slides out to reveal a matte-black folding box secured by a magnetic latch. Upon opening the box, you are presented with the IEMs themselves and the metal carrying case. The metal carrying case itself is not very pocketable due to its height and rigidity, but is a nice addition included with the overall package. The convex aluminum surface is somewhat thin and compressible, pressing down on it will cause it to go flat and spring back once pressure is released. It is internally lined with a thin felt surface, and closes by a seemingly snap-lock system.

    Within the metal case are the Falcon C's accessories. You get a 3.5mm to 6.3mm adapter, flight adapter, and a plethora of tips. There are 3 pairs (S/M/L) of the default blue-core 'bass' tips (medium bore), 3 pairs (S/M/L) translucent-grey 'clarity' tips (wider bore), and 4 pairs of (XS-L) Spinfit tips. The IEMs themselves also come with a pair of medium blue-core tips installed, so there are a total of 11 pairs of tips included in the box (impressive)!

    DESIGN & BUILD

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    The Dunu Falcon C is very well put together. It sports an attractive, dark and sleek design that looks great -- it is undoubtedly the first Dunu IEM that has caught my eye. The housing material is formed with 'liquid metal', perhaps similar to that of the Campfire Vega / Dorado / Lyra II line -- it is smooth and cool to the touch, feeling very premium regardless of its asking price. The housings are coated in a dark-grey shade, with a hint of metallic tinge beneath the surface. The metal shells are surprisingly hefty, but not to the point that they are noticeably heavy in the ear. I applaud the design of the Falcon C, as it is both pleasing to look at and comfortable to use.
    The housing is ergonomically shaped, reminiscent of a curved and smoothed teardrop. Once I was able to find the correct tips, they fit very securely without any discomfort. The angled MMCX connectors are also a great help to this. The design sits flush with my ears, I would go as far as to say these are sleepable IEMs.

    On the proximal side of the housing, there are a few visible seams that are apparent. They aren't rough or unrefined however, as the housings remain entirely comfortable. There is also a large driver venting, covered in a flat silver sheet with perforations. Left-right indicators are clearly legible and engraved into the surface.

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    Cable
    The Falcon C's cable is a mixed bag for me. It is a good-looking cable, shaded in dark brown with the internal wiring subtly glimmering from beneath the sleeving. It is also soft and quiet, reducing cable noise to a bare minimum. The ~45 degree angled MMCX connectors are great for ergonomics and pair well with the housing design. However, it is not without its issues. The cable itself is fairly springy, it tends to create funky loops when dangling between your ears and DAP/phone pocket (it is caused by rotation / mild twisting of the cable). Additionally, the material has a 'sticky' rubber texture, tending to grab onto the things it touches -- specifically clothing and itself. When the cable has mild tangles or loops, you can't really run your fingers through the wire to sift out the kinks; with the Falcon C's stock cable, you have to pick the wire tangles apart carefully as the rubber tends to grip to itself.

    SOUND IMPRESSIONS

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    Personally am not a huge believer of burn-in, but I gave the Falcon C ~90 hours of runtime before sitting down for a final listening session. I didn't hear that much of a difference between initial unboxing and current sound -- if something changes in the next 50 hours, I will update the review.

    The Falcon C is v-shaped in tonality, with excellent resolution and clarity. Lower midrange sits behind in the mix, creating a spacious and clear sound with above average imaging. Bass is enhanced with a favor towards midbass; upper midrange rises gently carrying momentum noticeably into the lower treble, which extends gently beyond into the upper treble.

    Bass

    The Falcon C's bass is one of its stronger assets. Subbass extends deep, though the lowest registers aren't as pronounced, still rumbling with authority. Midbass is impressively impactful and agile; speed is definitely above average, resulting in a relatively tight and technically apt presentation. Bass presentation will never come off as slow or syrupy. Bass is also fairly dynamic, it does not come off as one-noted or 'wooly' in texture like some other dynamic IEMs (an issue I felt to be present with the Pinnacle P1/X). In terms of quantity, the bass is undoubtedly lifted above neutral. Falcon C's bass quantity will likely please many low frequency lovers, but might not have enough for the most diehard bassheads.

    Midrange

    Midrange is usually tricky to get right, as my ears are more sensitive to noticing quirks and mishaps in the mids. Being an overall v-shaped IEM, the Falcon C's lower midrange is subdued in relation to its neighboring bass and upper midrange frequencies. Upper midrange is forward with excellent texture and resolution, though may come off as slightly tizzy at times. Female vocals are stand out as airy and detailed in a track, while male vocals have a clear biting edge but less body. This trait presents itself as a double-edged sword, resulting in an occasional metallic timbre associated with vocals.

    Treble

    Falcon C's lower treble carries its momentum from the lifted upper midrange, with noticeable emphasis on its lower treble. For this reason alone, I would not recommend the Falcon C to those who are sensitive to treble; it really dances on the borderline to sibilance for me. However, it offers fantastic clarity throughout its treble presentation, without any noticeable or substantial dips / valleys. Resolution is nothing short of impressive, especially in its price bracket. Extension into the high frequencies is not lacking -- it presents itself with an above-average sense of spaciousness / airiness and sufficient sparkle.

    CONCLUSION
    The Dunu Falcon C is a beautifully designed universal IEM, sporting a v-shaped tonality (leaning towards bright) with excellent resolution and extension in both directions. Build quality feels premium in both quality and aesthetics, its metal shells coated in a dark matte-grey and detachable MMCX cables reassuring durability. Bass is impactful and quick, with fantastic treble detail and extension. Falcon C's Achilles heel is within its occasionally energetic upper midrange, lending itself to come off as unnatural. But for those looking for a premium IEM with impressive bass and treble performance in this price bracket, it becomes seriously hard to rival the Dunu Falcon C in its strengths.

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      PacoBdn and Zelda like this.
  2. audio123
    Dunu Falcon-C - Dynamic Destiny
    Written by audio123
    Published Jan 10, 2018
    4.0/5,
    Pros - Sub-Bass Reproduction, Clean Treble, Packaging
    Cons - Needs slightly more body
    Introduction

    Dunu is a Chinese company established in 1994. They specialize in the production of in-ear monitors (IEMs) and earbuds. The Titan and DN series are very well-received. Dunu’s last product release was the DK-3001. Recently, they have released a new product in the Falcon-C. I would like to thank Dunu for the review unit of Falcon-C. At the moment, you can purchase the Falcon-C from https://penonaudio.com/dunu-falcon-c.html .

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    Specifications

    • Driver: 9mm carbon nano-tube
    • Frequency Response: 10-40kHz
    • Sound Pressure Level: 108 +/- 3dB
    • Impedance: 16 ohm
    Unboxing & Accessories

    The Falcon-C comes in a black package that has a silver protective cover. On the cover, there are the brand name, image of the iem, model name, description, high resolution audio logo and SpinFit logo. On the back of the cover, there are descriptions of the components in the package. After opening the package, you can see the iem and a carrying box. Inside the carrying case, there are 3 packs of silicone tips, flight adapter and headphone adapter. At the bottom of package, there are warranty card and instruction manual. There is no lacking in accessories.

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    IEM Build & Design

    The Falcon-C is made of liquid metal and there is a smooth surface to it. On the faceplate of each side, there is the brand name printed on it. The shell has a nice gunmetal grey color. On the inside of the iem, there are L & R markings on the left and right side respectively. There is a vent near the marking for both sides and near the nozzle too. The nozzle is slightly angled with metal mesh. The iem utilizes customised enlarged MMCX plug to ensure stability as well as ensuring compatibility with other MMCX cables. The Falcon-C has an ergonomic design with a comfortable fit. The build quality is good.

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    Cable Build & Design

    The cable has a 4 core braided design and it is made of silver plated copper (6N OCC). It has MMCX angled connectors. Each connector has an opaque black housing. There are L & R markings on the left and right side respectively. In addition, there is a black and red stripe on the left and right connector respectively for differentiation too. There is a memory wire section whereby the cable is being enclosed in a transparent heat-shrink tube. The chin slider and y-splitter are black in colour with the brand name printed on them. Lastly, the jack is 3.5mm gold plated right angled with strain relief.

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    Sound Analysis

    Lows

    The Falcon-C has moderate sub-bass quantity and it is extended with great depth. The sub-bass reproduction is delightful. The rumble is quick with a smooth touch. Each bass note is being articulated precisely. There is good tightness and control. Bass decay is pacey and there is a very engaging performance. There is good dynamics with sufficient punch. The mid-bass has moderate quantity to it and the slam is not hard hitting. Bass texture is moderately smooth. The bass does not have a visceral impact but it takes on a lively approach with clinical attack.

    Mids

    The midrange is slightly recessed. There is a good level of transparency with cleanliness. It does not operate in a thick and lush manner. The lower mids has a moderate amount of body and male vocals are being expressed in a pleasant way. The upper mids has great forwardness to it and it benefits female vocals. Female vocals are presented with intimacy and there is a strong engagement. There is finesse and the control on the vocals prevents it from being shouty. The details retrieval is excellent with good definition.

    Highs

    The treble has a great extension and it is bright. There is no sibilance and harshness. The Falcon-C is able to extend the treble to a certain extent and it showcases good technicality. The crisp is moderate with sparkle. This elevates the engagement. The amount of air rendered is good and gives a nicer airy presentation. The treble is expressed well with definition and it gives a detailed listening experience.

    Soundstage

    The soundstage has a rather natural expansion in its width. The magnitude is quite good and it gives an open feel to it. The depth has a moderate amount of space and it does not feel close in. Vocals and instruments positioning is precise. There is minimal congestion.

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    Comparisons

    Dunu Falcon-C vs Mee Audio Pinnacle P1

    The Falcon-C has more sub-bass than the P1 with a greater extension. Its sub-bass reproduction is able to deliver more kick and it is able to create an impactful performance. The mid-bass on the Falcon-C has more body with a stronger slam. Bass decay on the Falcon-C is more pacey and the agility helps to elevate the overall engagement. Bass texture on both is smooth. Each bass note on both is expressed with a clean hit but there is more authority with the Falcon-C. Rumble on the Falcon-C is quicker. The lower mids of the Falcon-C has more body than the P1 and it sounds fuller. Male vocals are better expressed on the Falcon-C. The upper mids on the Falcon-C is more forward and female vocals sound engaging. Details retrieval on both is similar. Moving on to the treble section, P1 has the edge for the crisp and sparkle. Falcon-C takes on a smoother approach. Treble on both is detailed. The amount of air rendered on the Falcon-C has a greater amount for an airier presentation. Lastly, the width on both has similar magnitude and P1 has the slightly better depth.

    Dunu Falcon-C vs iBasso IT03

    The Falcon-C has less sub-bass quantity than the IT03. The IT03 is able to extend its sub-bass deeper and there is more punch. The engagement level on the IT03 is higher. The mid-bass on the Falcon-C has slightly more quantity than the IT03 but the slam on the IT03 is more powerful. Bass decay on the IT03 is quicker but Falcon-C is not very far behind. The Falcon-C has a smoother bass texture. Each bass note on the IT03 is expressed with authority. The lower mids on the Falcon-C has more quantity and it is able to tackle male vocals better. The upper mids on both are quite forward but the Falcon-C has the edge with its finesse. Vocals are presented with more intimacy on the Falcon-C. The treble on the IT03 is slightly more extended with extra air and sparkle. On the other hand, the Falcon-C treble is less bright and there is control. Lastly, the Falcon-C has a more natural expansion while the magnitude for the IT03 is greater. The depth of IT03 is slightly better.

    Dunu Falcon-C vs Hifiman RE800

    The Falcon-C has more sub-bass quantity than the RE800 and the RE800 extends with a greater depth. There is a quicker rumble to the RE800 and decay is more pacey. Bass texture on the Falcon-C is smoother. The mid-bass on both has moderate quantity and the slam on the RE800 is expressed more cleanly. The lower mids of the Falcon-C has slightly more quantity with great texture. The upper mids of the RE800 has extra forwardness and it sounds cleaner with crisp. The midrange definition on the RE800 is better. The treble on both is well extended but the RE800 has the advantage with more air and sparkle rendered. The Falcon-C presents its treble with additional smoothness. The treble articulation on both is accurate and they demonstrate good details retrieval. The RE800 has slightly more technicality. Lastly, the Falcon-C expands it stage with a very realistic feel. The RE800 has the better magnitude and depth with more space rendered.

    Conclusion

    The Falcon-C is a bright v-shaped sounding iem with a lively sub-bass reproduction and clean extended treble. It is able to produce a detailed yet engaging sound. Moreover, it has a solid construction with a great cable to pair with it. The overall packaging is impressive with plenty of accessories. The Falcon-C is a wonderful product from Dunu.

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    For more reviews, visit https://audio123blog.wordpress.com/ .
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