Today we’re taking a first look at the KS3 from Alpha & Delta, currently available through their campaign on Indigogo: https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/alpha-delta-ks3-3d-printed-earphones#/
Alpha & Delta is the in-house brand of Lend Me UR Ears, a popular retailer out of Singapore. A while back I reviewed a few of their products with the single dynamic D6 being the standout. The KS3 takes the brand in a new direction with 3D printed, custom-like housings within which you find a 6mm microdriver.
When I first cracked open the packaging, the size of the ear piece housings was the first surprise. Alpha & Delta does advise of their size in the campaign, and shows a picture comparing them to a model in the StageDiver series from InEar, but the size doesn’t really click until you have them in hand. A 20% reduction makes a huge difference in ergonomics resulting in one of the most comfortable earphones I’ve worn to date. Unlike other products using this shape of ear piece, I suspect even those with small ears might find a match in the KS3.
The stock cable is awesome too. It looks like they simply took the D6’s amazing silver-plated braided cable, tossed on some 2-pin connectors, and called it a day. Nothing wrong with that, because this is a beautiful cable. That said, while the plugs are keyed, the ports are flush with the housings and not recessed so the keys aren’t used. You can plug the cable in whichever orientation you want leading to them being out of phase if not careful to match the key orientation. Since these earphones are 3D printed, that is easily something that can be addressed. Just one of many benefits of that particular manufacturing process. Note that there are 6 other cable options available should you want something specific, from 2.5mm balanced to Type-C with mic.
In terms of sound, the KS3 has a very versatile, mildly v-shaped signature. Bass has good extension down to 10Hz with a mild sub-bass skew giving the KS3 a smooth, visceral presentation. Mid-bass provides a mild punch and good texture. The mid-range is slightly recessed but has good coherence and vocal articulation. Despite a fairly relaxed mid-bass region, vocals retain a satisfying amount of weight and warmth. Treble is smooth and clear with a calm roll off at the top. Focus is mostly in the lower treble regions so while there isn’t a ton of sparkle to chimes, cymbals, etc. clarity is excellent. The KS3’s sound stage also seems well sized with nice imaging. I can see these being pretty awesome for mobile gaming, though I still need to test that myself.
Overall I’m liking what I’m hearing with the KS3. The tiny earpieces are comfortable and look great. The quality of the cable is above average for the segment. Sound quality is good with a versatile signature and solid dynamics. I can’t see many being disappointed with the KS3, unless your preferred signature is more towards neutral or mid-forward earphones.
Thanks for stopping by, and be sure to check out A&D’s campaign if these sound like something you’d be interested in. My full review should be out shortly!