Moondrop CHU (ultra budget)

Chus arrived. Nice little package. Heavier and more substantial than I was imagining for the price. Kinda forgot they were metal shell. Thankfully the nozzle filter is a metal grate, rather than a fine mesh, so should hopefully resist condensation issues.

Cable is not microphonic and seems perfectly adequate. A pair of silicone ear hooks are also supplied, but I see no need to use them.

Fit is great for me. Perfect even. Fit snuggly, don’t move, don’t have to readjust. First time using these moondrop spring tips, quite like them.

Stock tuning is not great, not terrible but also not great. Too much energy between 3k and 8k, and actually a little lacking between 1-2k. As a result recordings have a bit of metallic edge / shoutyness. I wasn’t getting fatigued while listening to it, some might though.

Comparing to the Tanchjim Ola, the Ola tuning out of the box is far superior. After that though all points go to the Chu. The Ola fit is so fussy as to be disqualifying. They seem as though they were designed without consideration for human ear anatomy. The stock Ola around the ear-hooks is problematic and contributes to the fit issue (the cable is replaceable, but who’s going to be replacing cables on an ultra budget IEM?). The range of tips supplied with the Ola are bizarre. The smallest ones look like they would fit a mouse.

I settled on the following EQ (for now).

Preamp: -4.0 dB
Filter: ON PK Fc 1568 Hz Gain 4.1 dB Q 1.22
Filter: ON PK Fc 2429 Hz Gain 2.5 dB Q 4.08
Filter: ON PK Fc 4993 Hz Gain -4.0 dB Q 0.96
Filter: ON PK Fc 7527 Hz Gain -6.8 dB Q 2.49
Filter: ON PK Fc 16321 Hz Gain 1.1 dB Q 0.15

Note you would need to find your own ear canal resonance, my EQ will not work for you. (My resonance peak was at about 7.5k).

Probably wouldn’t recommend without EQ.

edit rev 2 with bass correction into mids ala Oluv type IEM curve

Preamp: -4.6 dB
Filter 1: ON PK Fc 19 Hz Gain 4.4 dB Q 0.65
Filter 2: ON PK Fc 104 Hz Gain 0.8 dB Q 0.77
Filter 3: ON PK Fc 223 Hz Gain 2.3 dB Q 0.85
Filter 4: ON PK Fc 1893 Hz Gain 3.8 dB Q 1.11
Filter 5: ON PK Fc 4564 Hz Gain -4.3 dB Q 1.01
Filter 6: ON PK Fc 7409 Hz Gain -7.3 dB Q 2.35

edit small mistake above, this is too bassy for me. I will correct and update later. I introduced a slope between 800k and 200k, but continued too much into the bass region, not accounting for the fact that the CHU already has a bass boosted above neutral. Although for some this could be desirable.

rev 3

Preamp: -4.3 dB
Filter 1: ON PK Fc 34 Hz Gain -0.6 dB Q 1.47
Filter 2: ON PK Fc 50 Hz Gain -0.7 dB Q 1.58
Filter 3: ON PK Fc 206 Hz Gain 4.1 dB Q 0.82
Filter 4: ON PK Fc 801 Hz Gain -1.7 dB Q 2.60
Filter 5: ON PK Fc 1913 Hz Gain 3.6 dB Q 0.88
Filter 6: ON PK Fc 4344 Hz Gain -4.7 dB Q 0.95
Filter 7: ON PK Fc 7383 Hz Gain -7.6 dB Q 2.22
Filter 8: ON PK Fc 14101 Hz Gain -0.6 dB Q 2.31


Did Moondrop change the cable partway through their production because, for me, the Chu cable is a bent mess, and I have to use the included ear hooks for it to stay around and in my ears.

The Chu’s tuning is great for midcentric flair. It is clean by the book moondrop presentation, and little crispy on first listen. For acoustic and vocals, it is absolutely brilliant. But for anything busy and/or extended in either direction (not quite enough bass, not enough shimmer), the Chu falls flat on: but the more I listen to it I still cannot believe it is $20 USD. The Chu is not an all-arounder, but rather track dependent on how well it presents.

I, for one, will replace cables on any IEM that I listen to for more than 50 hours; to personalize it at the very least. That Blon Bl 03 cable had to go. The Chu cable has to go.

EDIT: OK, after a couple weeks in the ear hooks, they are finally not bending the way the came (opposite of around the ear) with the ear hooks off, still not great for on the go, but servicable while sitting at the desk at least. Longest listen today, and they definitely are subject to condensation like most metal IEMs.

Preamp: -4.0 dB
Filter 1: ON PK Fc 29 Hz Gain 3.9 dB Q 0.500
Filter 2: ON PK Fc 84 Hz Gain 0.7 dB Q 1.200
Filter 3: ON PK Fc 150 Hz Gain -1.1 dB Q 0.700

Chu Smooth Fun
Preamp: -4.0 dB
Filter 1: ON PK Fc 20 Hz Gain 3.4 dB Q 0.300
Filter 2: ON PK Fc 84 Hz Gain 0.6 dB Q 0.500
Filter 3: ON PK Fc 150 Hz Gain -0.9 dB Q 0.400
Filter 4: ON PK Fc 240 Hz Gain -1.7 dB Q 0.600
Filter 5: ON PK Fc 2000 Hz Gain 0.7 dB Q 0.700
Filter 6: ON PK Fc 3200 Hz Gain -2.0 dB Q 0.700
Filter 7: ON PK Fc 4500 Hz Gain 1.0 dB Q 0.700
Filter 8: ON PK Fc 4800 Hz Gain 3.0 dB Q 0.300
Filter 9: ON PK Fc 6700 Hz Gain -5.3 dB Q 0.300

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I don’t like the cable they don’t stay on my ears and the ear hooks slowly fall off as well… only complaints I have though!

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Can I share a review here?

There doesn’t seem to be an official Moondrop Chu thread unless @Ohmboy turns this one into the official. Might as well share your thoughts here.

alright… kind of odd considering how much conversation has been had around these lately

Originally posted on Reddit but sharing here because I love these IEMs.

These are currently my favorite IEMs, but please take everything here with a grain of salt. Your preferences are likely to differ from mine–personally, I value tuning above resolution, though I do think these are pretty resolving. I’ll list some of the other IEMs I’ve tried in order of preference at the bottom of the post so you can have an idea of how our tastes might match up.

Sound first! Fuck talking about build quality at the beginning of a review!

The tuning on these, to my ear, is close to perfectly neutral. What I mean by that is that nearly everything–vocals, drums, most instruments–sounds accurately represented. Where the Chu deviates from my understanding of neutrality is in the bass and in the treble.


The bass region as a whole is about 1-2db below what I consider neutral, though it is still executed extremely well in my opinion. Sub and mid-bass and proportioned perfectly for my tastes–kicks have impact yet don’t overstay their welcome, mid-bass sounds are able to punch but don’t bleed into the mids, bass guitars are properly articulated and are audible even in dense mixes. The only bass sounds that suffer on these are those found in Hip Hop and EDM. 808s are a little weak, and electronic basslines or bass-heavy sounds like dubstep growls lack some of the body that gives them authority.

That being said, I believe the slight treble emphasis provides a lot of these sounds the texture that they would otherwise lack on many other sets. For example, the bassline by little-known electronic artist Skrillex in “Summertime Blood” is satisfyingly rendered on the Chu with a rich, ASMR-like quality. By comparison, the same sound comes across loose and weirdly meaty on the Ikko OH10 and hollow-sounding on the Yume: Midnight. It seems to me that some of the harmonics that give a lot of electronic bass sounds their crunchiness or distinct texture reside in this treble region, and so, while it might seem counterintuitive, the Chu’s brightness helps in making its bass sound more “full.”


They’re slightly bright! Just a little bright. And it’s the kind of bright I really, really like. There’s no peakiness going on here as far as I can tell, so I only find these fatiguing at high volumes or over long periods of time (longer than it took for the Dusk to become fatiguing). Drums and vocals sparkle just enough to be interesting. The brightness also makes these sound more open. I don’t know if this quality exists thanks to the treble (and I’ll talk more about it in a following section), but it seems to me that the emphasis in the 4-8k region in combination with the good upper treble extension really helps with layering and imaging.


What can I say about the mids? They measure perfectly. Though it doesn’t bother me, I’d note that they are slightly on the thinner side. Only slightly, and that’s when compared to more full-sounding IEMs with either more lower-mid emphasis or less treble. The only potential criticism that I personally might have is that the mids don’t have as much depth as they do on more technically capable sets like the Kato. The harmonics are all correct though. Every instrument I throw at these sounds not just accurate, but convincing.

Which brings me to why I truly love this set: they’re CONVINCING! Above all, when I wear IEMs I want to be convinced. I want to feel like there are guitars and drums and singers present, even if they happen to be performing inside my head. For this, I need instruments to sound full and true, I need different sounds to be separated, and I need some measure of detail/resolution. The Chu passes all these tests with flying colors.


The build is good. They fit reasonably well as they’re fairly small and ergonomic. I have a harder time than most fitting IEMs, and found that the Aria and Starfield were both too weighty and imbalanced to stay in my ears reliably. Not the case with the Chu, especially when I use the rubber earhook attachments. I’m not a huge fan of this system–I really didn’t like it on Final Audio’s E5000–as the cable is prone to pulling its way out of the casing + it’s hard not to get a bit of extra wire bunched up in between the hook and the IEM that might put some unhelpful pressure on the IEM. Thankfully, this system is not a necessity on the Chu, so I don’t fault Moondrop for including them. Rather, it’s a nice option for those who want it. While the downward-pointing cable is unusual, it also means people who prefer not to wear cables over the ear (a.k.a. all my normie friends) won’t be required to.

The metal feels solid. I’m 99% sure it’s the exact same zinc alloy used on the more “premium” Aria, but even if it’s a cheaper material, it certainly doesn’t feel budget. A lot of people have complained about the cable, but I honestly think it’s pretty decent. Maybe my standards are particularly low… anything that isn’t as wildly tangly as the Blon BL03 cable or as cheap and stiff feeling as KZ’s clear cables is fine as far as I’m concerned. It’s more tangly and less durable feeling than the SSR’s cable, though I think the SSR has a standout cable for the sub-$100 range (very low memory, and the smooth plastic sheath is both durable and makes them easy to untangle).

My only complaint with the build is entirely subjective, and it’s that I don’t really like the aesthetics of the Chu. It has an odd shape, it pokes out of my ear a bit, and I feel like the leaf-like design is pointing the wrong direction. The colors are fine, but not really my style. Still, it’s way better looking than the tacky Blon BL05, the boring CCA CRA, the nerdy ER2SE, the gaudy Tripowin Mele… need I go on? Have I pissed enough people off yet?

Some Test Tracks and Comparisons for Reference

All these tests are using Spring tips… a lot of these nitpicks are solved by using other tips, but I wanted to give some more insight for people who wouldn’t plan on tip rolling with these.

Testing these with a bright track – The Chain by Fleetwood Mac: Everything is present, but almost nothing is overemphasized… the snare is a little forward, but not so much that it’s distracting.

Faust by Gorillaz: Texture!!! The texture of the bass is just right. Sizzly, but not too sizzly. Again, snare has just a bit too much ride… on sets like the Midnight, they fade more naturally and aren’t quite as forward to begin with. Vocals are also a liiiittle sibilant/airy, to where, if I focus on them, it almost sounds like the top register of their voices are detached from the lower registers. Almost a ghostly quality. Again, it’s very faint and doesn’t meaningfully detract from my enjoyment of the song.

cheap flowers by Lexi Jayde: The bass and kick together are full and punchy here, whereas they’re simultaneously limp and bloated on the Aria. Vocals and instruments are equally forward and easy to discern, and they’re represented properly. Though the bass is FULL sounding, it lacks some richness that would be achieved with a slight bump to the bass as a whole or with some more mid-bass.

Dubstep - Junkyard by SpaceYeti: here’s where that lack of richness really shows its face. Satisfying sub bass, but the heft that I expect from this genre isn’t really there with the Spring tips. It is definitely enough to get by, and I much prefer this well-proportioned but lower quantity approach to the OH10’s “big” but loose and unsatisfying bass.

Final Thoughts

Even after receiving the Kato (which I really like), I still prefer the Chu’s tuning. Unlike with nearly every other IEM I’ve owned, I don’t really have a favorite set of tips for these–with Spring tips, the reverb/room information these convey is kind of unbelievable for a $20 set. With more standard silicone tips, the bass sounds a little more full and the harmonics from the lower mids all the way to the upper mids are PERFECT. On other sets, Drifting Circles by Attacca Quartet is a good song–with silicone tips on the Chu, it brings me to tears. The dynamic range is so believable; sounds swell and fade exactly as they’re supposed to, which I’ve come to realize is hugely important for music in this vein (a lot of the emotion from strings relies on volume control).

This is hella incoherent so if you’ve made it this far thanks for reading!!!

Some IEMs I’ve tried in order of preference:
Chu = Kato > Yume > OH10 > Hana 2021 > Dusk > Timeless > Midnight > Olina


Just got my Chu delivered. I am always surprised when I want to share my first impressions on a set that is talked about so much, just to find that the offial thread has almost no posts :thinking:

I just got it for the tips and didn’t really expect to like the Chu, but I am positively surprised.

What stands out to me is the build (apart from the fixed cable). It is the first Moondrop IEM with an actual good fit of those I tried (Aria was too loose no matter the tips and Blessing 2 is huge). The metal case makes you think it’s not only 20$ and it is small enough that you could sleep with them in your ears.

I don’t have them here for a direct comparison, but they do remind me more of the Aria than the Blessing 2, which in my book is a good thing, since the 20$ Chu beats it’s 300$ brother in treble extension. Makes me wonder what the value proposition of buying an Aria/Starfield is nowadays. Maybe it is better technically - I couldn’t recall - but it can’t be by much. So either get a Chu instead or directly get something much better (like the S12?). Also the Aria is famous for falling apart after some time (let’s see how good the QC will end up being with the Chu).

The real question to me is wether it can replace the CRA as the value king. It is too early to tell for me, but it definitely is a worthy contender.

I got the mic version and the mic is not bad either. Definitely usable for voice communication, when playing games.


I have been using mine for a while now and to be honest when my Chus first arrived at my door step, I am not expecting much from them since you know this is a budget IEM and I only ordered this for some extra Sping Tips and due to me, wanting to hear it for myself since the claims for it have been so far positive and some consider it a game changer for the price.

And when I finally gave them a listen for weeks now, I must say, I agree with the claims of it being a game changer for the price and hell I think it competes with my other IEMs that are pricier than it, particularly my Katos.

Despite the technicalities of it are just average, you know not something to write about at home and just ok, but the tuning(or should I say CHUning am I right?), the tuning from my Chus are just fucking good like wtf is this 20USD only for real?! This might be hot take, but I prefer the Chus over the Arias I have, yep that’s how good are the Chus.

I cannot complain much about the cable being attached since it’s 20USD, for just the sounds I get from it overall tramples the cons.


imo the quarks were great too besides being ugly but for $10 can’t complain

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In terms of it being ugly? I have to respectfully disagree, to me they look unique and good enough to be worn in the ears with no issues. I mean at least I like the look.


pretty cheap looking plastic shell idk maybe I’m biased because KZ does that too lol

KZ is a different story. Tbh the only IEMs that they have impressed me with so far would be their ZS10 Pro, the rest of their IEMs were at best meh, especially the mess they got themselves into by screwing crinacle and HBB over with their ineptitude.

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For anyone interested my final (for now I guess) Chu EQ.

Again, my ear canal resonance about 7.5-7.8k. If you get a similar resonance peak, then this could be decent for you. If not, you would need to do some work.

Preamp: -4.8 dB
Filter: ON PK Fc 7800 Hz Gain -6.9 dB Q 7
Filter: ON PK Fc 6900 Hz Gain -5.2 dB Q 5
Filter: ON PK Fc 5400 Hz Gain -1.5 dB Q 2
Filter: ON PK Fc 4291 Hz Gain -5.7 dB Q 0.92
Filter: ON PK Fc 1933 Hz Gain 4.5 dB Q 0.88
Filter: ON PK Fc 798 Hz Gain -1.7 dB Q 2.55
Filter: ON PK Fc 255 Hz Gain -0.4 dB Q 2.18
Filter: ON PK Fc 211 Hz Gain 5 dB Q 0.84
Filter: ON LSC Fc 40 Hz Gain 1 dB Q 0.6708

If anyone is interested, I just posted my personal opinion on these in the Acho Reviews thread.

I agree with this sentiment for I also have the mic version, due to the fact that the one without a mic has ran out of stock. I was expecting the mic of it to be shit, but to my surprise, it’s actually pretty decent.


Received mine yesterday and yes they are good. I just ordered because I needed a cheap headset for work. These will sell like crazy and set a new standard in the sub 50,- price bracket. As these are my first Moondrops ever I am curious how much better the Blessing 2s are.

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I recieved the chu Yesterday too.
The initial impressions were great: the tuning is balanced and this set should be a good all-rounder.

I threw my test playlist at it, and here is what I found:
The stage is a little small, but imaging in that stage is not bad, so you can separate different instruments.
The voices are not toned down in volume, but appear further away than usual. It gives you a sense of laid back that I like : it makes the set good for listening to music while working, as a further voice won’t grab your attention as much.the bass and sub-bass aren’t lacking : the interstellar soundtrack shows rumble and slam. The treble is a little bit forward, but that’s not too much: cymbals tend to be louder than what I expect, but there is no sibilance.

For a 20$ set, that’s quite impressive!

But… Because I’m french, it has to be a but :wink:
The more I listened to it, the more I found something is lacking. On some tracks, it feels like some frequencies are missing. In “absolution” (muse) there is no link between the drum section and the melodic section. Same thing on “killing in the name of” (ratm) or “après coups”(Hoshi). The bass guitar can’t express itself well enough , so the whole instruments don’t mix with each other. It’s like a recipe where you forgot the egg: everything is there, but it doesn’t mix and hold like it’s supposed to.

I need more listening time to decide if this fact is annoying enough for me to get rid of the set. Tip rolling may also be a solution

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The only complaint I have so far is the treble but for 20,- that complaint is not justified. I need to compare the Chu against my Tin HiFi T3 Plus. The ER2XR wins against the Chu hands down but the ER2XR is not that much better to justify it’s price tag. Here in Europe the ER2XR is about 180,- EUR and the Chu was 25,- EUR.


blessing 2 is a different tuning so while it’s better at some things it is a different experience

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