android
  #1  
Old 03-28-2011, 01:25 PM
dv8tor dv8tor is offline
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Posts: 19
Default Fake SoundMagic PL-30s or Factory Defect?

I just purchased these a few days ago, but I have some major issues.

While I initially thought there could be no way anyone would want to fake the SoundMagic PL-30s, I have reason to believe the package I purchased is fake. Since SoundMagic is already a Chinese (Shenzhen-local) company that offers affordable products, I was under the impression they were cheap enough to purchase that no one would bother replicating them. Either that, or my IEMs had a factory defect.

I know the PL-30s have different sorts of packaging. Doing a quick Google search for "SoundMagic PL30 box" will bring up 3 different packaging designs already.

However, I happened to get the one below. This is also the packaging from the Amazon UK website.

I was quite satisfied with the packaging and contents for such an affordable product.

However, my problems started occurring and are listed as follows:

1. Upon opening the packaging, I noticed there was no User Manual and most PL30 owners on forums actually got one. I would think they needed to put a manual for the bass knob settings. Even basic IEMs without much features have manuals.

2. Next, I saw un-boxing videos and reviews and everyone got a cable winder in their package. My box contained no cable winder.

3. Initially testing the IEMs, (of course a lot would argue that burning-in would be proper first), but in my first listen, these IEMs just sounded downright terrible. The sound was so tinny and very mono, not producing the solid sound I had from my Creative EP 630s and newly purchased Klipsch Image S4's. It was like I purchased disposable $5, no-branded headphones. It was so bad that it ruined the music on my D2+. Whatever music I played was just wrong. There seemed to be something missing with the drivers.

4. Moving on to further testing my new IEMs, I tried tinkering with the bass knob and it wouldn't move at all. It was like as if it were just firmly placed on the earphones to serve an aesthetic, design purpose. There are two small dots indicating the setting of the bass, but the knob is unmovable.

5. Trying different ways and measures of twisting the knob, I came to one option of actually unscrewing or loosening the knob (since there was no manual, I created my own options). Anyways, I successfully loosened the knob and was able to turn it. However, it loosened up a tad too much and broke right off. I can't even place the knob back into the socket.

From this experience, I have had two conclusions. First, these may truly be fake due to the missing items in the packaging, substandard quality, and awful sound. However, they also could be a bad batch of factory defective production units. SoundMagic actually has a European website but the PL30s are non-existent on the site. SoundMagic has a Chinese website which even Google can't translate so I don't know what the heck is going on.

Anyways, from this bad experience I've had with SoundMagic, I will probably never be purchasing another item from them again. I will return these to the store/person I purchased these from and demand a refund.

If any of you other PL-30 owners have experienced this, please share your insights. I also wanted to post this as a warning for anyone who wants to purchase anything from SoundMagic in the future.
Reply With Quote

Advertisement [Remove Advertisement]

  #2  
Old 03-28-2011, 03:23 PM
fuzzypits's Avatar
fuzzypits fuzzypits is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: Quispamsis, Newbrunswick
Posts: 207
Default

I bought my PL-30s through Mp4nation, and they came in the same box as yours.

Mine didn't include a cord winder and the knob for bass boost doesn't want to move upon minimal force, so I haven't tried it with a lot of force as you did.

Mine sounded great though, I was extremely impressed with the SQ.
__________________
I'm Infinite
[Setup]Sansa Fuze Rockboxed with an 8gb MicroSD, Zune HD 32GB, FiiO E3, Altec Backbeat Classics[/Setup]
Reply With Quote

  #3  
Old 03-28-2011, 03:41 PM
razorblader's Avatar
razorblader razorblader is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
Posts: 138
Default

I bought two sets of PL-30's over the course of the last 2 years and they didn't come with a cord winder which is not a standard accessory with these I believe. They do come with a nice case though and an assortment of different ear tips. The bass boost knob does move with a little force but you preferably turn it sideways as pulling on it usually results in it coming off and not wanting to go back on.

There is no sonic improvement to be expected from changing it's position anyways, the PL-30's simply sound muddier when switched to the other position.

The PL-30's need burn-in (mine definitely did), after that they will sound semi-decent but don't expect miracles. The treble is kinda lacking on these.
Reply With Quote

  #4  
Old 03-29-2011, 10:14 AM
phattyguy phattyguy is offline
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Posts: 73
Default

Yeahh. I downright hated the PL30's when I first got them. All that missing bass and highs really made me angry. When they said the bass was lacking, they weren't lying.

But, it definitely made up in the midrange. It had somewhat more details then, say your typical earphones.

I guess what i'm getting at is, it's a completely different sound signature and probably is not a defect.

Also, unlike other earphones, these PL30's are not that great when trying to shove them in deeper. They have a sweetspot for insertions.

well, from my experience.

My other earphones that I use are the meelectronics M9 and they are the polar opposites of the PL30's.
Reply With Quote

  #5  
Old 03-29-2011, 11:51 AM
lestatar's Avatar
lestatar lestatar is offline
Ultra Senior Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: Hong Kong now, but NYC always
Posts: 4,657
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by phattyguy View Post
...SNIPPED...
Also, unlike other earphones, these PL30's are not that great when trying to shove them in deeper. They have a sweetspot for insertions.,..SNIPPED...
Exactly right IME as well, with my Soundmagic PL21s.
__________________
DAPs:2xRBFuze8+16GB|SonyE345|ZenV+,Micro,Xtra40GBx2|RBG igabeatFX|RCAOpal
IEMs:PanaHJE900|Nuforce 700x|HippoVB|iMetal590,i490|SM PL-21|CX300|EP630,Aurvana
Guitars:IbanezS540,JS1200|Ovation
PoolCues: a bunch
A Glossary for Newbies
Reply With Quote

  #6  
Old 03-29-2011, 10:31 PM
mbamg mbamg is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: Richmond Hill, Ontario, Canada
Posts: 129
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by dv8tor View Post
I just purchased these a few days ago, but I have some major issues.

While I initially thought there could be no way anyone would want to fake the SoundMagic PL-30s, I have reason to believe the package I purchased is fake. Since SoundMagic is already a Chinese (Shenzhen-local) company that offers affordable products, I was under the impression they were cheap enough to purchase that no one would bother replicating them. Either that, or my IEMs had a factory defect.

I know the PL-30s have different sorts of packaging. Doing a quick Google search for "SoundMagic PL30 box" will bring up 3 different packaging designs already.

However, I happened to get the one below. This is also the packaging from the Amazon UK website.

I was quite satisfied with the packaging and contents for such an affordable product.

However, my problems started occurring and are listed as follows:

1. Upon opening the packaging, I noticed there was no User Manual and most PL30 owners on forums actually got one. I would think they needed to put a manual for the bass knob settings. Even basic IEMs without much features have manuals.

2. Next, I saw un-boxing videos and reviews and everyone got a cable winder in their package. My box contained no cable winder.

3. Initially testing the IEMs, (of course a lot would argue that burning-in would be proper first), but in my first listen, these IEMs just sounded downright terrible. The sound was so tinny and very mono, not producing the solid sound I had from my Creative EP 630s and newly purchased Klipsch Image S4's. It was like I purchased disposable $5, no-branded headphones. It was so bad that it ruined the music on my D2+. Whatever music I played was just wrong. There seemed to be something missing with the drivers.

4. Moving on to further testing my new IEMs, I tried tinkering with the bass knob and it wouldn't move at all. It was like as if it were just firmly placed on the earphones to serve an aesthetic, design purpose. There are two small dots indicating the setting of the bass, but the knob is unmovable.

5. Trying different ways and measures of twisting the knob, I came to one option of actually unscrewing or loosening the knob (since there was no manual, I created my own options). Anyways, I successfully loosened the knob and was able to turn it. However, it loosened up a tad too much and broke right off. I can't even place the knob back into the socket.

From this experience, I have had two conclusions. First, these may truly be fake due to the missing items in the packaging, substandard quality, and awful sound. However, they also could be a bad batch of factory defective production units. SoundMagic actually has a European website but the PL30s are non-existent on the site. SoundMagic has a Chinese website which even Google can't translate so I don't know what the heck is going on.

Anyways, from this bad experience I've had with SoundMagic, I will probably never be purchasing another item from them again. I will return these to the store/person I purchased these from and demand a refund.

If any of you other PL-30 owners have experienced this, please share your insights. I also wanted to post this as a warning for anyone who wants to purchase anything from SoundMagic in the future.
Return them, and buy from Focalprice.com (recommended on Head-fi forums), which has free shipping.

If it they are fakes, I can only shake my head at the irony of a Chinese counterfeiter destroying the credibility of the few reputable Chinese manufacturers who have potential to expand to a global market.

Edit: I googled "soundmagic", and I got this link as the first result: http://soundmagic.en.alibaba.com/
__________________
Walkman NWZ-E438F/LG P999 (Voodoo)/Clip+ 4GB (Rockboxed) || Senn CX300/AT CKM55/MEE M6/Brainwavz Proalpha/Maximo iM-590/MEE A151/AT CKM50/Koss TBSE1

Turn down the volume when playing music. Your ears will thank you.

Last edited by mbamg; 03-29-2011 at 10:52 PM.
Reply With Quote

  #7  
Old 04-02-2011, 01:39 PM
dv8tor dv8tor is offline
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Posts: 19
Default

Thanks for all the comments guys. Appreciate it. Anyways, I returned them to the brick-and-mortar dealer I bought them from and the store gave me a new pair which worked. They did acknowledge that it was indeed a factory defect and saw clearly that the bass knob was broken.

All their PL30 boxes had no manual or cable winder. I guess the new batch of production didn't include these anymore.

The new PL30's I got have a functional bass knob and has sound that is true to what most of you guys say. It doesn't really have strong bass but has mid-range clarity.

However, I still can't find that perfect fit for my ears. I tried all the spare ear tips and the one that gives me the best sound and isolation is the large rubber tip. The foam tips sound awful, and so do the small rubber ones.

I also have a problem with some discomfort in long periods of listening. I usually wear these when I practice the drums with various songs. I was planning to use these for the gym, but with the discomfort and odd over-the-ear fit, I'm thinking of selling these and getting normal fit (not over-the-ear) IEMs. I didn't expect over-the-ear IEMs to be quite discomforting and not be as sound-isolating as normal fit ones.

My Creative EP630s and Klipsch Image S4's fit perfectly and comfortably, while maximizing sound isolation.
Reply With Quote

Reply

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump



All times are GMT -5. The time now is 04:38 PM.