I quickly became a fan of this little company ever since I listened to their humbly priced Idun. Given the Idun’s handsome looks, solid build, great fit, and fantastic sound for the price, I was particularly curious to see what they could offer in the higher echelon. At 800 bucks, the Odin is priced just below some of the heavy hitters out there, like the Shure SE846 and Campfire Andromeda. Can it compete with the big boys? Let’s find out in this Kinera Odin IEM Review.
Kinera Odin IEM Review
IN the BOX
No problems in this category. Well contoured with great sound isolation, I found the Odin comfortable to wear for hours at a time. In addition to the exceptional ergonomics, I also appreciated the elastic design of the over-ear wire that saves you the time of moulding it into shape. In fact, in terms of fit, I prefer these Kinera puppies over brands like Campfire, Noble Audio, and even models from Shure, which are much smaller in size.
The Kinera Odin employs 8 balanced armature drivers with a 4 way crossover (2 low, 2 mid, 2 high-mid, 2 high). The 2-pin OCC + silver-plated braided cable is also pretty sweet. Thick and soft with a solid termination, the workmanship appears to be high quality. It’s also nice to rub between your fingers in times of stress. That’s what she said.
The frequency range is a standard 20Hz – 20kHz. And the Odin is easy to drive, even from a mobile device. But at this level of sound quality, I recommend using a portable DAC/amp combo to optimize the Odin’s performance.
Punchy and tight with tons of grip, the bass on the Odin makes for a great pop track. At the same time, those who are fearful of too much bass will find these IEMs a safe bet, as the low-end avoids going overboard. And, in fact, the Odin is very clean and well separated in this range. So there’s no bloated bass or bleeding into the higher frequencies. Still, you will get a bit of warmth when listening to rock, pop-rock and electronica. And there’s enough sub-bass response to do justice to hip-hop as well. Though the level of detail is okay, you’ll hear more smoothness than texture when listening to classical string instruments in this range. Not a bad thing, especially if you like a fluid sound.
Good presence here with a fairly even balance between the low and high mids. The result is a full-bodied and all-encompassing feel when listening to rock and pop-rock tracks. And because the high mids aren’t too pronounced, vocals sit nicely within the arrangement. So, you won’t experience any harshness or artificial emphasis in the mix. However, those who gravitate towards a particularly dynamic profile (where there’s a strong contrast between the low and high frequencies) may want to keep looking.
The level of separation is also solid, and seems to warrant the price tag. Folk music fans will appreciate the clean delineation of guitar strums. And the layering of instruments in heavy arrangements is relatively tidy too, though you will hear more warmth than crystal clear definition.
The sound also remains tight in this range. And what particularly attracted me to Odin’s personality in the mids was the fast impact of snare drums. And in tracks where the snare helps to drive the song, the speed really added to the energy of the song. (Think Fleetwood Mac’s Big Love).
Kinera has hit the sweet spot here. Though you’ll get plenty of sparkle and snap from percussion in this range, the Odin stops short of being too bright. (And overly extended highs seem to be a growing trend these days). So, it’s nice that they didn’t get carried away here. And folks who are pained by high frequencies should find this range easy enough on the ears. Transparency in this range is also excellent; string instruments revealed plenty of substance and presented a realistic timbre and good resolve. At the same time, that pleasing touch of smoothness remains. And as a result, vocals have all the good stuff, offering an airy, nuanced and cohesive performance.
The Odin certainly gives grandeur and vastness to the soundstage. However, sticklers may feel that the imaging could be more precise. That is, gradations in depth and height could have been a little more accurate for an IEM in this price range. And instruments didn’t have as much extension in depth or height as you’d hear in a slightly higher priced IEM model, like the Campfire Andromeda, for example. Still, you will get an enjoyably holographic experience overall.
I have no complaints. The Kinera Odin offers tons of body, nice speed, great balance and decent separation. It may not be the most charismatic sound signature I’ve ever encountered (and to be fair, it’s half the price of unforgettable superstars, like the Solaris), but it certainly checks almost all the boxes in terms of skill. Furthermore, it’s versatile enough to handle every genre. So, the Odin is a great choice for budding audiophiles in the market for their first high performance IEM. The fantastic fit is also a huge plus, while the tasteful aesthetics are icing on the cake. All in all, this is a delightful package worthy of 800 bucks.
You can find the Kinera Odin IEMs for the best price here: