This is the official thread for the Moondrop S8
This thread is for discussion and reviews.
- Type: In Ear
- Amp needed: Yes
$10 code: MOONDROPS810 for Moondrop S8 from https://hifigo.com
I just ordered a pair of these. It’s not usually my preferred option, but it’ll be nice to have a Harman reference in my lineup. Since I plan to use these mobile exclusively I think (hope) I’ll enjoy them more than I would at my desk
I just got these today and have gotten a few hours in on them. I’m running them balanced through both my m15 and thx789 using this cable that I’d recommend:
I wasn’t crazy about the out of the box sound. The included tips had very narrow bores which I thought overemphasized the bass and messed with the soundstage a good bit. I switched to the Spiral Dots I’ve been using with my JVC HA-FD01s, but they also weren’t right. I switched to Spin Fits, and they seem to be doing the trick.
These are very nice. Detail and resolution are really strong. Bass is boosted with the Harman tuning, but it’s not too much, and the treble may be on the bright side for some, but i’m enjoying it. I’ve only got a few hours on them, but some tracks haven’t sounded great as I’ve jumped through my music. Punk, garage, and anything with heavy distortion doesn’t seem to be ideal from my brief experience, but that wouldn’t be unique to these in my collection.
I haven’t heard anything by Moondrop since the Kanas Pro, but they seem to have come a long way since then. The way I understand it, all their current iems are tuned the same way, they just vary in capabilities depending on the price range. The Starfield already has fans, and Resolve mentioned really liking the Blessing 2 ($320 msrp) in his Can Jam recap video. If they sound similar to these, I can see both being very popular. Overall I’m really pleased so far. I don’t really own any other Harman tuned headphones or iems, so I can see these becoming a nice change of pace for me
Moondrop S8 review from crinacle
I got my S8s today and I just came in here to suck them off. These are hands down my endgame IEMs. I tried Starfields, KXXS, Kinera Nanna, Fiio FA7, among others. These do it for me. I don’t know what it is about Moondrop’s sound signature but it hits the spot. They are great portable but out of a THX 789 these things beat a lot of full sized headphones. The only other IEMs that clicked with me as soon as I put them in were the KXXS’s. If you don’t know if you will like these, try Starfields. Hell, buy a pair as beaters. If that type of sound works for you, these take it all the way to 11 in every aspect.
I’m using foam tips by the way, no idea what they sound like with the stock silicone tips - nor do I care. It’s a shame they don’t include foam tips out of box…
Edit: I should add that these are quite large IEMs. I have small ears and they fit fine though, very comfy. Not sure if this is mentioned much about them
I’m really enjoying the Starfield’s sound, but what really got me hooked was the large soundstage relative to the majority of other IEMs in its price bracket. How is the soundstage on the S8 relative to the Starfields?
I don’t have the Starfields on hand to compare side by side but it’s very holographic and it takes everything the Starfields do to the next tier. I started watching a recording of A State of Trance 950 from youtube (Armin Van Buuren, live) and I am 50 minutes in right now. I literally have not been able to stop, it was just supposed to be a 5 minute test lol. This is just straight from my iphone, sounds way better from a THX 789. I use these videos to test setups because it’s recorded in a huge football stadium full of people. Not many systems can convey the sense of scale/size of the venue properly. The S8s can. Ether C Flow 1.2s can. Great speakers can (S400). Hope this helps!
I had the same reaction when I tried my Ether Flows which remain my end game. Just got stuck in a trance playing song after song. I haven’t even been tempted to try another headphone since and now I’m not tempted to try another IEM. My Stax L700s have been gathering dust and I’ll end up selling them. Truth be told it’s probably the SRM 353x driver holding them back but I’m not about to spend 4-5k just to get everything out of them. (edit: the Stax have amazing soundstage too but they are not as crisp and clean as the Flows, they have a bit of grain)
Moondrop S8 impressions:
Using the medium stock tips, the fit is good for me. Even though they are voluminous it is pretty comfortable. For example, I can’t fit the DQ6/CRN twins without them hurting my ears because of the wing in the back of the shell. I have no issues with the S8.
For my first impression, listening to some classical music that I am very familiar with, I was impressed with the smooth, accurate and detailed sound that was coming out of these.
The bass on the S8 is very unique compared to what I heard before. The bass lacks physicality like rumble and slam. This is mostly noticeable when listening to hip-hop, pop or EDM. However for other genres of music, the bass is there when needed but completely disappears when not needed. In terms of quality, the bass on the S8 is very fast, providing a very clean and fast bass. Overall, the bass on S8 is very clean, showing no bloat or warmth to color the sound.
Techno tracks that rely on mid-bass more than sub-bass benefit from this very clean bass. It presents a more clinical than fun replay when compared to something like the Tanchjim Oxygen or the GS Audio GD3A. One aspect of the S8 that surprised me the most when listening to Techno is the pinpoint accurate imaging. I never knew before that good imaging would make Techno and Trance tracks very spacious by providing great track separation.
For the other frequencies, I will be brief. The mids are not recessed and present in a natural way. The highs are there, clear, detailed and never sibilant. Vocals are in one word PERFECT, they are where you expect them to be, not too warm nor recessed. Timbre (and what I mean by timbre is how accurate the instruments sound) is excellent. No “BA” timbre here, which confirms my thought that bad timbre is caused mainly by tonality. I found the soundstage on S8 to be good but not amazing.
Overall, the S8 presents the sounds in a soft/smooth fashion but while still presenting you with a lot of details.