The Moondrop Spaceship takes off!
Updated: Oct 3, 2020
Welcome back to the Neighborhood!
Today we’re taking a look at another Moondrop IEM. And this one, looks like a hairdryer and is called: The Spaceship! And, this is the O.G. version.
So, with the S.S.R. in house as well, with that review on the horizon…
Let’s get inToit!
So, the Spaceships come in at only $20 dollars and are the most affordable Moondrop to my knowledge. They are an extremely small, metal, bullet-style IEM, in a hairdryer shape, which houses a 6mm micro-dynamic driver. The wire is attached, and has “R” and “L” in raised lettering on the rubberized stem-joint that connects to the underside of the shell of the IEM. The cable extremely rubbery, and I am not the biggest fan of this type of cable, as it tends to snake itself from time to time; but it does feel like it is rugged and will stand the test of time. Flexibly, the Spaceships can be worn straight-down, or over the ear; as I tended to prefer to do.
The cable terminates in a 3.5mm, and because the cable is attached, it eliminates the capability to run this set balanced. While my review sample did not come with a microphone, they also make a version with an in-line mic; but I think the packaging might be significantly cheaper on that version.
The stock tips tended to darken up the sound a bit, and did not allow for very much bass reproduction in general. I preferred SpinFit CP100 or RHA Dual Density tips, as they unveiled the presentation, enhanced dynamics, and brought up the bass to more enjoyable levels.
The bass of the Spaceship is delicate, tight, and punchy with this tip adjustment. But, with the stock tips installed, the Spaceship lacks dynamics and bass presence. While the bass has a nice texture and tone it overall, it does lack sub-bass presence (like at all), no matter what tip is employed, and it relies mainly on its mid-bass performance to deliver its emphasis. Perhaps because it is generally bass-lite, and rather integrative, it never overtook or bled into the mid-range. Nevertheless, I did find its punchy presentation to contribute to some ear-fatigue overtime.
The mid-range presentation was also somewhat fatiguing to endure for long-listening sessions. The spaceship is a somewhat bright timbred, diffuse-field tuning- meaning that it has elevated mid-range that begins around 2K and peaks at 3K. This results in a mid-forward presentation that is boarding on extreme.
Vocals are forward, and can become shouty across genres. Lead guitar tones, and solos could become strident on some tracks, and were simply intense on others. Again, there is a general forwardness to the presentation, particularly in the upper mid-range, that plays jump rope with the line at times.
In the case of the Spaceship, the treble extends its elevation out to 8K before it gently declines- reaching its next valley well beyond 11K. While this results in some decent air and sparkle within the Spaceships sound-field, it is a bright presentation. Nevertheless, there is a certain liquidity to the Spaceships tones that brings to mind the image of a reflective T-1000 in its molten, metal form.
Imaging is astounding for a $20 earphone, separation is above average, and instruments are distinctively accurate within space. Of particular note, vocals were sharply centered. For a tiny, micro-driver, bullet-style IEM the Spaceship’s soundstage was much larger than expected. While not as smeared, or forced-wide, as something like a Blon BL-03, the Spaceships do have a wide, holographic soundstage- but within more natural limits. Depth and height of the stage were more restricted in comparison; however. Transients were crisp, and resolved quickly and sharply- but also with accuracy.
At $20, the Spaceship is an overachiever. It images more accurately, and is slightly more detailed and resolving than the Blon BL-03, but it is also leaner, has less treble roll-off, and is ultimately more aggressive sounding. In contrast, the Blon offers a more bass-emphasized, and laid-back presentation that can be somewhat less fatiguing to some. So, if you’re looking for a budget IEM, and don’t mind a brighter, more mid-forward, diffuse-field-target-sound, then the Moondrop Spaceship might be a better fit.
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