In-Ear Fidelity

Sony IER-Z1R Impressions and Measurements

My pre-order from 2018 is finally here.

Sony absolutely outdid themselves with the unboxing experience. Leagues ahead of everybody else in the TOTL game.

3.5mm SE cable, 4.4 balanced cable and a generous helping of tips.

And of course, the star of the show.


I’ve already tried the IER-Z1R multiple times before I pulled the trigger. Most would already know what I feel about it, but here’s a short refresher.

The signature of the IER-Z1R is mildly V-shaped with a strong focus in the sub-bass rather than midbass. Rumble comes through well-articulated while percussive beats are clean and well-defined with almost zero smearing despite its emphasis.

Lower midrange is tuned with a recession, increasing clarity and definition though not as strong with male vocals as it is with female. Strengths include percussion, woodwinds and plucked strings, not as strong with male vocals, bowed strings and brass but still enough to at least be considered a general all-rounder.

Treble is one of the best that I’ve heard and has converted me into a DD-tweeter fan. Well-extended and smooth with no peaks or dips throughout, whilst conveying enough energy for sparkle. Transients are extremely snappy, resulting in zero splashiness or overlap.

(Note: ideal treble response only occurs with a deep insert. Due to the size of the housing, this fit may not be possible for certain ears.)

Below are the measurements for this particular unit:

Patrons of my Patreon (all tiers) will get early access to my full review whenever it comes out.

Full review might take a little while so to hell with it, I’ll just drop the rank here.

Final Rank: S

9 thoughts on “Sony IER-Z1R Impressions and Measurements”

  1. Great pictures. Thanks for front loading your opinion and ranking. Looking forward to the details when you have the time for your full review.

  2. From your description and the graph, the Z1R sounds and look similar to the Hyla CE-5. Would you say this is a clear upgrade if one is a fan of the CE-5 sound signature?

  3. the “filterless” measurement in the graphs tool section looks so much like the Free-Field neutral response. That’s so interesting to me.

  4. How did you achieve the frequency response on the “Sample 1” measurement from your database? It touches the Harman curve so perfectly!

  5. I just got it. Warm sounding amp like Chord Mojo 2 i find they pair very well. There is a mild mids recession but the warm sounding mojo 2 amp improves this aa bit

    Pretty impressed at its layering and soundstage even with todays newer IEMs

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *