Review of Phonak Audeo PFE132 Earphones
By Nicole Trein
First of all Audeos certainly look the part of high end earphones. Upon simply looking at them I already thought that the PFE132 were not playing any games. The PFE132 have that delicate appearance you'd expect from a pricey object- like that of an expensive silk shirt. But the fragility is only a misconceived facade because the PFE132 are sturdy, secured, and long lasting. The cable is thick enough to last but not too heavy. The ear piece is small and fits well on my ear. What I do not like about certain Shure products is that the earpiece is slightly large for my ear and I cannot get a perfect fit. This is not problem with the PFE132 though.
The PFE 132 comes with exchangeable acoustic filters, silicone tips in small, medium, and large, a pair of comply foam tips, and ear guides for the cable. I like the case for Audeos because it has 2 separate compartments. That way you can store the ear phones in one and all its accessories in the other without getting all the contents tangled up. It isn’t a hard case like the Westone and Shure cases but it gets the job done at keeping the earphones safe.
The sound of the Audeo PFE132 is also wonderful. The clarity of the Audeo devices never fails to impress me. They don’t give as much volume as say the Shure SE425 so I don’t believe they are as fit for listening to say a collection of heavy rock songs. But when it comes to vocals and instrumentals the PFE are great. The sound that these produce is light weight. It flows smoothly from the speakers to my ears which is why I think these are ideal for jazz music, acoustic performances, and classical music. The sound isn’t overwhelming but it is fine and almost thin sounding. It is not as clear as the more expensive Audeo model the PFE232 but the sound is beyond great at its price range. Only a little cloudy when it comes to rock songs that rely on a lot of guitar and heavy pounding drums.
A song such as Human by The Killers is complimented nicely on the Audeo PFE 132 because it flowed with great precision. I love listening to covers by the band Boyce Avenue on YouTube. I’m a huge fan of his covers and listening to them with the PFE132 made me enjoy them even more. The PFE132 is ideal for these types of covers because the covers are very raw. These songs have barely any editing and are just one live run through. The clarity of the PFE132 dismissed the imperfections that are normally carried in a song when you hear it straight from YouTube. The performance sounded high quality. Which bring me to say that you do not need a high end mp3 to accompany the Phonak Audeo PFE132. They will work just the same whether you’re listening on your iPhone, computer, or MP3. I listen to Pandora and YouTube with the PFE132 from my Nook Tablet whose main purpose is not listening to music. I still get the same sound as when I listen from my iPod.
I listened to Cough Syrup by Young the Giant on these to see how they would hold up my favorite song. The sound was great. Awesome reflection on the vocals and guitar progression from beginning to end. I listened to Uprising by Muse and was a little less impressed. The intense and every dynamics that are so evident in this song were not a good fit for the PFE132. It still sounded good but after being so impressed by Cough Syrup I had expected more. The sound is not right and sometimes gets clouded whenever too much is going on. I also listened to Into the Ocean by Blue October. It sounded excellent but not the extreme WOW factor. Then again that song is mellower. The precision and quality of the PFE132 complimented the vocals very well especially towards the end of the song when there are whispers and echoes.
I still prefer listening to the covers and acoustic performances on the PFE132. The cover of Fast Car by Boyce Avenue that I listened with the PFE132 straight from YouTube really sold me this device.
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