Before starting this review, I would like to share technical aspects and package details.
Also, I would like to thanks to David from QDC for help to get my Anole VX.
Sensitivity: 110-113dB SPL/mW
Frequency response :10Hz-20000Hz
Armature units: 10 micro balanced armatures
Noise isolation: 26dB
Monitor plug: 3.5mm (1/8″) connector
Technical feature:3 sound channels, 3 crossover, natural restoring, superb music quality
Frequency response types: 8 Types
Classification: Standard VX-S
Recommend: monitor and music enthusiast
QDC Anole VX earphone
6.3mm Stereo Jack
Lotoo Paw Gold
Astell & Kern AK120
Package, Design & Isolation;
Anole VX comes with pretty heavy and big size box. You may think that it is a headphone instead of earphone before opening it. Box itself feels premium in every step outside to inside. When you open the box that beautiful earphone and high-quality leather case welcomes you, impressed. Package contents are not rich but it has everything that you need. Leather case, cleaning tool, silicon tips. All contents are high quality but I really love the blue leather case. This is by far the best earphone case I’ve ever seen. It is beautifully made, and all the stitches, leather, and colors are looks gorgeous. There is magnet on the lid and easy to open and close. Inside of the case is soft leather and It keeps Anole VX safely and gently.
Stock cable is really beautiful and I don’t feel to upgrade it, yet! It is 8 braided silver and copper cable and it pretty soft material. It is not unnecessarily fat and bold. Some of the after cables are like a rope which I don’t like. Another think that I would like to mention about its socket type. I guess there are some misunderstanding about the socket that Anole VX used. Many people (including myself) thought that Anole VX has 0.75mm socket, but this is wrong. I’ve confirmed from David and it has 78mm socket on Anole VX which you can use with 3rd party cables.
Anole VX has only one-color option for universal model and it is not customizable. Actually, I adore that design and color. It is much more beautiful than the pictures and every part of the earphone looks elegant. Softly transparent shell with silver nuggets are great combination. Built and material quality are awesome, there is no fault or blemish on the body. Metal nozzle seems solid and overall earphone feels built like a tank. Switches are also pretty tight and secure. This is my first QDC product and I’ve good feeling with its shell design. It is super ergonomic and it fits into my ears like a glove. It’s custom like design not only helps the ergonomics, but also provide a great isolation on the ears. I think this is the best fit universal earphone I have ever used, after the Prophile 8.
Foam tips always give better isolation, but it is hard to use it for me because of its hygiene and installation in the ear. Squeeze it, push it, wait… meh. Silicon tips are pretty great and it provides fair enough isolation, and it is easy to wear. Anyway, with silicon tips it has nice isolation due to its shell design. I’ve never had any issue and its isolation level is better than average.
Sensitivity and Power:
Anole VX is not power-hungry earphone, and doesn’t need powerful source for its potential, so you can use it with your any source that you have. But it deserves really good source just remember it. I’ve heard slightly hiss with my Lotoo Paw Gold but it is not crossing to the red line. With my AK120 it is pitch black and never heard anything.
Before got the Anole VX, I’ve read many things about it, and mostly people say about it is the best earphone, or star of the show for many listeners. These comments made me more curious than before and when I got the Anole VX, I started to listen to skip inspect the package contents. Normally I always check every content of the box and read the instructions papers before put it into my ears. However, when I listened first it didn’t make me wow, but after listened for awhile I realized its magical sound. It is not the earphone that you shock with its powerful bass, or hyper detailed trebles, this is the earphone that you like more about its reference and true sound character with musicality. Its sounds very close to real timbre and it is not boring as like reference earphone, and yes, some what VX is pretty musical. I mostly listened all switches are down, so my sound impressions will be in this regard. Switches has some affect on the sound but it is minor and it doesn’t change the sound drastically.
Long story short, I’ve impressed by the sound that what I heard. It is absolutely totl class performance.
The treble is one of my favorite frequencies in Anole VX. The upper frequencies are highly pronounced yet does not have any of sibilance or brain drilling performance. Although they are prominent and forward, they do not cause fatigue in long-term listening. Even when I listen loudly, I don’t find it. In addition, low or high volume there is no metallization. There is a lot of energy and dynamism in the treble and it never loses its control. Extremely successful performance for this amount of treble. The extension of the treble is at the totl level. The instruments can be heard until the last timbre, and it is possible to hear the slightest movement in the music, like breathing or guitar picks. The treble is as clean and clear as possible, and thanks to this clarity, it is spacious and airy. In spite of all these prominent trebles it does not play on analytical side which is great. It plays in the true tone and at the same time it is musical, this success puts it in such a special place, and I understand why people like Anole VX so far. Some reference earphones sacrifice of their musicality to play with the right tone and is described as a boring product for many people. Anole VX is a very successful earphone in this regard and QDC did a great job in this sense. The separation between instruments is also very impressive. In airy presentation all the instruments play in a certain space without sticking to each other. There is absolutely no harshness on the upper frequencies, and there is no roll off either. Overall, I really love its treble performance and it is easily one of my favorites.
I have heard or have had a lot of TOTL earphones so far, and some of them have been wiped out of my mind while others have left their mark. Anole VX is probably one of the few best earphones that has mid frequencies I’ve ever heard. Mid frequencies have a wonderful tonal balance, detail and resolution. I’ve fallen in love its timbre and sound, there’s nothing wrong with the mid frequencies. It’s using notes and instruments that each occupy their own frequency range and it has nice coherence between all the frequencies. It sounds like reference but some what it is musical and engaging. Transparency is perhaps the best thing the Anole VX does. Notes are neither thicker nor weaker than they should be. There is enough body and weight in the lower mids and instruments have nice body instead of being light. I even liked the sweet bass hits from the lower mid and that sweet tone has a big role to not being analytic and sterile. There is no aggression or uncontrolled energy in the upper mids, but I can hear a slight harshness when I listen with my Lotoo Paw Gold. I would like to point out that I do not come across with the other sources that I have and that I only feel this harshness with LPG. The vocals are smooth and clean. Neither far in front of the scene nor far behind. There is no romantic presentation like in your face, but it has nice harmony with the instruments and soundstage. Overall, I can say the mid frequencies are marvelous. It is superb that the Anole VX make a great balance between reference and musicality.
First of all, I must say that this is not a bass-head earphone, but surprisingly it’s not bass light too. The bass has enough body and it doesn’t feel weak in this area. It has some weight on the notes but it does not make the sounds thicker, just slightly adding some warmth. Sub bass doesn’t reach too deep, and it doesn’t feel lacking due to the overall amount of bass. Anole VX is like programmed to do everything right and it is trying not to compromise its mission. If there is a bass on the track, it gives the right amount it, not more not less. At least it is trying, and doesn’t make any exaggeration. The bass is fast and the recovery time is quite good. Even in fast-genres music doesn’t show any uncontrolled character or muddling in consecutive bass hits. The Anole VX uses the advantages of armature drivers, it’s tight and controlled, which dynamic drivers can’t imagine. The bass doesn’t seem to dominate other frequencies. Seems like there is a invisible wall between all the frequencies and they are playing from their place. The resolution and quality of the bass is again top notch. There is no dry and cold presentation for an armature driver. Basses generally have enough impact and amount for many users, but they may not fully satisfy with some bass heavy tracks or electronic music genres. But I would like to mention again, it’s definitely enough in terms of quantity and impact for my taste. With foam tips and copper cable upgrade, it is possible to add some extra db as well.
Anole VX has holographical 3D presentation and it has quite wide soundstage. Not super wide or not the best I’ve heard, but it is more than enough to put space between instruments. The musical notes are naturally placed in a three-dimensional area. Airy presentation also makes positioning very easy which you can focus and listen every instrument easily. Depth is also very successful and it can give a good sense of depth. Background is quite dark and it provides clean listening experience.
There are many TOTL earphones out there and some of them are really amazing in terms of sound and some of them are totally disappointed. For Anole VX, it deserves its TOTL status and it is one of the best earphones I’ve ever had. Its sound is phenomenal and after using it for a while you are getting used to it and when you wear another earphone you want to go back to Anole VX. It feels and looks amazing and its material quality is top notch. QDC has got my attention and I would like to try other earphones that they made. Like Anole VX, some of their models are sitting in the higher place in some people’s score list and I absolutely want to hear it. Overall, I love Anole VX and I am looking forward to their next flagship model in the near future. If you are looking for a TOTL earphone just find, listen and give it a chance, it will sell itself.