Tripowin x HBB Mele – Review
The Tripowin x HBB Mele has unique origins. To develop a product that would appeal to audiophiles, Tripowin partnered with well-known headphone reviewer Hawaiian Bad Boy. As a headphone reviewer myself, this is exciting to see. At $49.99, the Mele falls in a fairly low price range for In-Ear Monitors. Today I’m going to see how Mele performs.
What’s in the Box
- Tripowin x HBB Mele IEMs
- Detachable cable
- Carrying Case
- Silicone Ear Tips
Look and Feel
The Mele looks and feels good. You can tell Tripowin had comfort and longevity in mind. The metal housing feels sturdy yet surprisingly light, and the faux-marble backplate design brings out the best in them aesthetically. Also, the Left and Right are labeled, which I appreciate tremendously.
Mele utilizes the specially designed Accutune dynamic driver. Rather than relying on the housing’s shape for tuning, the Accutane driver is housed in its cavity to maintain its precision tuning. Despite its low price, the Mele uses high-quality materials to ensure proper resonance, signal flow, and durability.
The Mele has a frequency response of 10 Hz – 34 kHz and an impedance of 16 Ohms.
I was incredibly surprised by Mele’s soundstage. For a pair of $50 IEMs, Mele manages to get very wide when appropriate. The stereo field is both clear and distinctly separate, and “pan bloom” effects can have deep contrast. The dynamic range isn’t bad either, though tends to get squashed somewhat at higher volumes. While it’s by no means the most complex soundstage I’ve ever heard, it does sound pleasing and suits my tastes very well.
The lows on the Meles are heavily present, while this will satisfy bass heads, it may not be for everybody. I liked the low end on these, while it can occasionally distort and overpower the mix, the Mele’s lows normally sounded clear and added some serious weight.
The Midrange on the Mele follows a typical U-curve sound. The Mids are pleasant and allow for a smooth listening experience. I occasionally felt that lead instruments sounded boxy, but this was very rare and for the most part lead instruments fell into a good spot. Overall, the midrange sounded detailed and provided nice support for the entire frequency spectrum.
The Treble on the Mele surprised me. While it’s by no means the clearest or most complex high range I’ve ever heard, it still brings a surprising amount of detail and air to the sound. It can sound somewhat subdued and lacking in depth at times, however, the subdued sound character helps give the Mele its ease of listening.
I was amazed by the Mele. I didn’t expect much coming from $50 IEMs, but they managed to outperform nearly every IEM in its price range and several outside of its price range. While it’s by no means a perfect IEM, it has its own unique sound character that I found both dynamic and easy on the listener. If you’re looking for your first pair of IEMs or just want to try something new for a relatively low price, then the Tripowin x HBB Meles are well worth the already generously low price.