Even at this year's High End there weren't too many in-ears to see or buy. hear, but one stood out very clearly visually and acoustically: The AURA by Vision Ears, manufactured in cooperation with Astell&Kern.
Like the Odyssey before it, which was produced by Empire Ears for Astell&Kern, the AURA will also only be available in a quantity of 600 worldwide, making it a collector's item.
I had the opportunity not only to listen extensively to the AURA at the High End, but also to talk to Vision Ears company co-founder Amir and chief developer Oliver about their latest project.
I was told that the production of the AURA was very complex and that new production techniques had to be found in some cases in order to be able to produce the "gem" in this form at all.
Was it worth the effort? Let's take a closer look at the AURA.
What immediately catches the eye is the striking case with a golden faceplate, which immediately reminded me of jewellery. I find the design very aesthetic and valuable and you can clearly see and feel the effort put into it.
By the way, the "air slots" that make the AURA an open IEM are clearly visible - a design that is rarely seen in the in-ear area. Personally, I only know the Black Hole and Black Hole Mini Wood from Shozy, which rely on an open construction.
The advantage: As with large headphones, this open construction achieves a larger stage presentation.
The Aura is supplied with a copper cable specially manufactured by Effect Audio, which looks great with the AURA. In general, care has been taken to create a coherent "total work of art" that does justice to a "limited edition" in this price range.
The AURA consists of 11 drivers per side and a special crossover. According to Vision Ears, all components were specially developed internally.
Let's get to the sound
After just a few minutes of listening, a satisfied grin appears on my face. Yes, this is a very special IEM, definitely not "off the peg".
The AURA appears extremely clear and detailed right away. The heights impress with airiness and a maximum of details without any sharpness.
Voices sound extremely natural and are easily brought to the fore of the action, giving you presence and emphasis.
Instruments and singers can be clearly heard and localized without the big picture suffering.
The bass goes deep, but remains perfectly controlled, taut, crisp and, in the best sense of the word, neutral or neutral. slightly raised.
Overall, the tuning of the AURA is rather neutral. Nothing is exaggerated here and yet he manages the balancing act not to appear boring but on the contrary - to arouse emotions in the listener. That's the way it should be!
In my mind's eye there is a slightly W-shaped frequency curve, which is confirmed on paper by Oliver, the chief developer of Vision Ears.
By the way, the AURA harmonizes perfectly with Cayins N7 and the SP3000 from Astell&Kern. I even suspect that the AURA is generally not sensitive to the connected source. Of course you should use an appropriate amp or Use DAP to utilize the full potential of the AURA.
Picture: Oliver from Vision Ears with his "Meisterstück".
The VISION EARS x Astell&Kern AURA is a very special IEM. From the sound, from the design and from the processing. You can see and feel that a lot of work and even more passion has gone into this product and the future owners will receive a limited collector's item that will give them many years of pleasure.
Personally, the AURA is the best I've heard from Vision Ears. Bravo!
The AURA can now be pre-ordered from us: VISION EARS x Astell&Kern AURA
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