Campfire Audio Solaris in-ear Headphones - Official Thread

So would you say that you like the Solaris the most from the Campfire lineup?

1 Like

I’d say its pretty good and this data is within the noise.

4 Likes

Paul - Yea. I am finding that the Solaris makes the Andromeda and any other IEM I have sound boring now, and this is bad news for me. The Solaris is really wide. I’m not sure I’ve heard such a wide sounding IEM before, yet it’s very natural sounding. The Andromedas sound closed-in and dark compared to them, and I didn’t think that was the case prior to putting on the Solaris ---- well maybe perhaps slight darkness.

Add-on:
It pairs quite well with the XDP-300R. No noise issues at all despite it being ultra sensitive. I do hear line noise coming out of the Fiio M9 though. Also super clean out of my RME ADI-2 DAC. So, M9 needs IEMatch.

3 Likes

Hi Anthony, glad to hear your still liking your XDP-300r. I love mine. It could do with a longer battery life but hey ho. Now with regards the Solaris, I haven’t heard it myself but it does sound like a really great iem though. I love the sparkle and airy nature of the Andromeda’s. However since I now have the U18t’s by 64 Audio I find I no longer have an interest in upgrading or trying anymore high end iem’s. This may or may not be a temporary thing but we shall see.

It’s funny you should say that you found the other iem’s boring in computing the Solaris. When I first got my U18t’s and heard them they sounded quite boring. Within five minutes I added a little more upper mid and treble via the very simple Spotify EQ and this turned it into something special. I heard the 3D sound that some people talk about with certain iem’s. The default tuning of the U18t’s is very much a neutral Flatish almost reference tuning. There’s a very sligh v shape but not much at all really. This is what I found boring at first. It’s such an accomplished iem across the whole spectrum and I am in love with it. People will ball at me getting such an expensive iem only to have to EQ it but I EQ everything to my tastes in the end.

Anyhow I am long overdue to get my impressions and review done on the U18t’s so I will get my thoughts put down very soon. I do lack the measurement rig though so I shan’t be able to back it up with measurement charts or even fancy the photographs that have become an almost essential requirement. But I shall endeavour to try my best with my trusty iPhone 6 and terrible photography skills. And I promise no dustbin shots this time @Torq. :grin:.

Both you and @DarthPool’s reviews have become highly polished and I really enjoy reading them. There are some really great reviews coming out on the forum almost daily now from multiple users of the forum and it’s becoming a real treasure trove of information. :+1:.

4 Likes

I finished writing up a long sort of rambling/discussion review of this IEM, but I’ll give it a little more time before I post it. I spent so many frustrating days this past week listening to this thing and I couldn’t find myself giving up on it. I tried on about three dozen different tips of all shapes and sizes and mods to them but haven’t found one that would last. It is a delicious sounding IEM.

The bad part is the fit for me. Left ear fit is perfect. Right ear is not at all. My right ear canal is narrower and has a sharper bend to it (after staring at my CIEM shell for a while and determining this). Due to the deeper insertion and larger nozzle/bore diameter of the Solaris, this causes problems with my right ear canal fit.

When I correct it by essentially wearing it shallower, the larger shell and sharp corners impact my outer ear and that causes pain (like Andromedas do sometimes). I want to explore custom ear tip route and how that would work, but if this right ear fit thing wasn’t an issue, I think I’d be immediately dropping money on these things. Due to fit, I am more hesitant right now.

I also spent some time with the Andromedas hoping to recreate the same synergistic magic I had with the Solaris and it doesn’t do it for me. I find the Andros to be missing too much upper mids and lower treble.

I feel like I found my gold pot at the end of the rainbow and I can never reach it. :slight_smile:

3 Likes

Fit is definitely the most common complaint with the Solaris. I could see a lot of people going the custom tip route with the Solaris because they do sound fantastic but if you can’t wear them then what’s the point? It’s the same issue with heavier over-ears as well like @Resolve points out in his LCD-2 Closed Review.

I think Campfire has definitely heard the feedback on the Solaris fit (as well as the Andromeda for the last couple years) and they could be addressing it in the future. There are still plenty of headphone shows left this year so plenty of time for announcements.

What’s your favourite pairing with the Solaris so far?

4 Likes

Hey, have you tried out the Spiral Dots? I use the largest size and a really shallow insertion. The ear hooks just keep the shells from pulling away from my ear. I generally rotate between those and the large Final ETypes.

2 Likes

I’m a big fan of spiral dots also! So far my favorite tips, I also like some of the different foam tips but they never seem to last long.

2 Likes

@antdroid’s excellent, full review of the Solaris is now posted on headphone.com!

Well worth reading if you’re interested in these IEMs, or are looking at others at this level.

5 Likes

Me next! Me next! :stuck_out_tongue_closed_eyes:I am looking forward to giving these a proper go… great review @antdroid!

3 Likes

I tried Medium/Small-sized Spiral Dots this past weekend with them. They were too small to use with the Solaris. I think medium would have worked better. They were comfortable enough but the small size leaked a little too much.

4 Likes

I’ve got a pair of Medium Spiral Dots with your name on it if you’re interested. I don’t use them at all because they’re way too small for me. PM me your address and I’ll mail them out to you.

2 Likes

I have the spiral dots on my CA Andromeda, and really enjoy them…but seal can be problematic…I think I might get some foam tips soon… I just really like the bore size of the spiral dots…I’ll look at what size I have and edit in this post… I have medium size…I’ll order the next size up and see how they feel…

2 Likes

Yea, I found the spiral dots to be very comfortable with the Andromeda. More so than foam for me. I have a couple spare foam tips on me and I can bring it with me to meet you in a couple hours.

3 Likes

Ok, the holographic nature of these is rather unreal…also these are massive! They stick out pretty far…had them in for about 2hrs…and I’m getting to my limit of comfort…but they are addicting, I’ve been using them plugged directly into my iPad mini5 with Qobuz.

3 Likes

Yea, I heard the tips I ordered make them stick out a little more, which in my case may actually be beneficial. I don’t often leave any IEM or headphone on my head for more than an hour straight without removing them for some reason or another. I found the Solaris really addicting to listen to, especially instrumental post-rock tracks with large soundscapes.

4 Likes

Yeah, they are very enjoyable…but I think I’m leaning towards @taronlissimore feeling on these…but need more time and A/B with the other IEMs on hand…

3 Likes

Solaris is definitely the best sounding IEM I’ve heard…but it wrecks my ear canals lol … I put my trusty Andromeda back in and it was like putting on a pair of old gloves ear pain is gone…sparkle is back but holographic sound gone… I think that the Solaris is kind of like the LCD-X…it is so good it is almost boring…with the really only standout feature being the holographic nature of it…which is amazing, and if I was more inclined towards IEMs I would have already bought the Solaris…it is something worth hearing if the opportunity comes up.

Also take note that when I say only standout feature, I’m not detracting from the overall excellent quality of the highs, mids, and lows… seriously the best IEM I’ve heard to date.

I’ve always had a proclivity towards unique things, or what I perceive as unique lol. These fit that bill handily in the looks department, and the unique imaging, and holographic soundstage.

It is just too big and uncomfortable for me…which is hugely disappointing… I refuse to be that girl that wears uncomfortable shoes because they “look good, and are in” lol.

Another thing I’ve found… I can’t quit my spiral dots!!! I tried a bunch :grimacing: of my other tips and they f’d with the sound too much…that un-impeded bore opening is just my preference, also all the other tips made the Solaris stick too far out and put extra pressure in my ear holes lol.

Man…the Solaris is addicting though…and I keep putting them back in my red and angry ears :confounded:, but dat sound doh!..

5 Likes

haha. Sounds like my experience. But I found a couple suitable tips and that sold me on them!

My ear impressions arrived today at the CIEM lab and hopefully I’ll get them back in a few weeks to try out.

3 Likes

Holy F’balls! Just put these on the iFi NiBL and wow!!! It’s like I’ve been listening to these with wool in my ears up to this point…they just came alive…Holographic is an understatement…now I see why you picked these up @antdroid

Ok I just swapped back to my Pixel2XL iEmatch Razer THX DAC combo…and it is still very good, but the NiBL adds just that tiny extra bit of magic, not enough to overly miss it but…it is much preferable.

Also now that I’ve been listening to my Andromedas for most of the day…then just put these in…These don’t necessarily smoke the Andromedas…but they are wider, and I would say more neutral, with faster dynamics…but not by much. The Andromeda Sparkle is just so kisses fingers in sleazy french way , I am having a hard time determining which I like more. The Solaris have this almost echo like sound in every song, which is odd, and I think is the Holographic nature of them makes you feel like you are listening at an excellent Concert Hall, or a very well made Amphitheater. Anrdromeda is not as wide, or open sounding…which the Solaris is. The Andromedas have a more vocal forward presence along with the highs. The Solaris just has presence across the board.

I think the Solaris is a better IEM…just overall… it lacks that amazing Andromeda Sparkle but like @antdroid said… it has this oddly addictive quality to it…Maybe… I’ll see about building up my pain tolerance lol because I’m not giving up my Spiral Dots!

5 Likes