Shozy Form 1.1: hidden secrets
Updated: Dec 10, 2020
Hey guys, welcome back to the neighborhood. Today we’ve got the Shozy 1.1 in for review thanks to Farsil the Wizard. If you’re not familiar with Farsil, he is a wizarding audiophile, who is a bit of a character… no literally he is an actual character. But, in any case, he’s fun to watch!
Any how… the Shozy 1.1… let’s get InToit!
So let’s talk about the Shozy Form 1.1. I did not really have a ton of expectations about the 1.1 when I received this box from Farsil. In fact, they were one of the last IEM's that I auditioned from among the group. But, boy were these a surprise!
I actually like these quite a bit, but mostly after some small tinkering. Although I tried a plethora of tip options on this set, I was somewhat disappointed with the tone and overall presentation initially. Generally, it was just somewhat flat, and ultimately rather boring in the end.
The smaller, stock silicone tips were very comfortable, and sounded best out of the tips from the box, but, they ultimately brought the driver too close to my eardrum, and pushed the overall presentation too far forward. At the end of the day, it sounded like the music was not properly developed.
Like a fine wine, the 1.1 benefits from letting the driver breathe a bit, and JVC Spiral Dots were the solution for this. In fact, with spiral dots, the sound developed quite nicely. With spiral dots, the Shozy Form 1.1 may be one of my favorite IEM's under $100 dollars, but without their addition, I don’t know if I would really recommend set. The simply lack charisma otherwise. So, either invest in spiral dots with this guy, or be prepare to be somewhat disappointed, as they are less engaging without them.
So let’s talk about the remainder of the build. The Shozy Form 1.1 is a hybrid, IEM, consisting of a single BA (balanced armature) and a beryllium-coated, dynamic driver. It comes with a cloth covered cable, that falls into the “fine” category- both with regard to build and to sound. It isn’t the softest cable, and is slightly stiff- but not overly so at the same time. Overall, I would call it a nice, usable, functional cable with a proper bead for a chin slider. While it really wasn’t my cup of tea, I wouldn’t really judge anyone for using it either.
With regard to the actual shell of the IEM itself, I really like it. They’re quite small, lightweight, and have an appropriate angle and depth into my ear canal. The 1.1 are sized, "just right," to fit perfectly within the concha of my ear. They are composed of what appear to be a one-piece, all-black shell with a multicolored flake, which is somewhat understated, but also gives the IEM some pizzazz in the right light. With medium spiral dots, they are supremely comfortable to wear for long listening sessions, and I barely feel them in my ears at all.
From a sound perspective, I really enjoy the overall presentation, but there are a few caveats. In general, the Shozy Form 1.1 produced meaty and lush tones, which were delivered smoothly. Timbre could be described as natural and earthy with woody characteristics.
It was not overly resolving, but it also resolved pretty damn well. I would place the Shozy Form 1.1 within the “smooth operator” category. Having said that there was a pretty sizable peak around 8K. Perhaps the spiral dots limited the impact of this peak, but honestly, it didn’t really bother me on 99% of tracks.
I was more bothered by the dip around 6.5K, which produced a weirdly, deemphasized response from guitars on some rock music. For example, on the song “Crushed” by Buckcherry, there were lead-guitar parts that seemed more recessed than usual. This effect was also apparent on "Molly (16 candles)" by Sponge, but I did not notice this recession on, let's say, 95% of the music I tested.
With some consistency, I did notice that the balanced armature on this set was “low key sensitive,” but this was easily remedied by employing low gain on IEM appropriate amplifiers, or utilizing an iFi IEMatch otherwise.
The bass on the Form 1.1 demonstrated some "potential" difficulties, depending upon one's particular listening preferences. There was a decent amount of sub-bass, which mixed into the overall bass response fairly well, but it also did have a pretty steep auditory drop off, at let’s say, around 40 Hz. Below this region, there appeared to be no sub-bass response to my ears on most music. In other words, there was not as much sub-bass here, as say, something like a TFZ NO.3 or a KZ ZSX. Instead, sub-bass presentation was closer to a Starfield or KXXS per memory. There was also a pretty significant mid-bass hump, that I would not say bled into the mid-range, but I would say it hazed into it for sure. I did not notice this much at first, but it did end up becoming somewhat fatiguing and would wear on me a bit if I were to listen to this Shozy all day long.
Despite these issues, the BA driver here delivered a certain amount of clarity and detail without ever becoming harsh or sibilant to my ears. The low-end was still very satisfying, even if it lacked a bit of sub-bass at times, and I found this set particularly good for the metal genre when it featured guttural guitar rhythms. Does this IEM CHUG? Hell yeah it does!
It also lays down a fairly hallow-graphic sounds stage with Spiral Dots. Transients were particularly good on this set as well- thanks, in part, to its single BA and beryllium driver configuration.
In general, with JVC Spiral Dots, the Shozy Form 1.1 reminds me of the Blon BL-03 with specific regard to its warmth, tonality, and sound-stage. For those individuals that look at the BL-03, and say: “Hey, I like the full sound, but I wish that it had a bit better resolution, a smidgen more treble, and more sub-bass presence;” then I’d look no further than the 1.1. To me the Shozy Form 1.1 represents the next step in the upgrade path for those that love the Blon BL-03 house-sound.
The sound-stage may ultimately not be forced quite as wide as the Blon (BL-03), but the Shozy certainly have better technical capabilities within their sound-stage. There was less smearing than the Blons (BL-03) have, better articulation of instruments within space, less mid-bass bleed, enhanced sub-bass performance, and increased overall clarity in comparison.
While I have not heard the Shozy Form 1.4, at this point, my understanding is that the 1.4 may be more than a bit brighter with regard to its overall tonality. It also appears that the 1.4 is physically larger and heavier than the 1.1. Given how much I like both the fit and lush character of the 1.1, I’m not sure I would want to upgrade 1.4. Plus, a meta-analysis of reviews from others who have heard both, suggested that at its heftier price-point the Form 1.4 may not be not worth upgrade? Nevertheless, I’ll ultimately chose to refrain from final judgement until I hear that set for myself. Hopefully someone will be able to send a Form 1.4 to the channel for comparison purposes soon.
So do I recommend the Shozy Form 1.1? As long as you’re willing to invest in some additional JVC Spiral Dots, I most certainly do! In fact, I think it does some unique things with its earthy-toned melodies, detailed balanced armature and beryllium dynamic driver design, and relaxing sound signature. Thanks again to Farsil The Wizard for sending this over to my channel for review, I truly appreciate it. So make sure to head over to YouTube and subscribe to my channel there if you haven't yet, and then check out Farsil’s channel as well for some additional entertainment. And as always, you can keep up with the channel by keeping up with this blog, checking out the Instagram, and looking out for those tweets in the Twitter-verse. All links are found on the homepage of this blog.
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