Ovidius RX-100 Qin Armor In-Ear Monitor Review

I have never heard of this Ovidius brand before, and I imagine they are new to the scene. They just released two new products found on Linsoul: one is the "Combat Armor" planar magnetic headphone, and the other is the "Qin Armor", or RX-100 in-ear monitor, which runs for $229 and will be reviewed here.

The Qin Armor is a triple-driver IEM featuring a single 10mm dynamic driver and a dual-driver balanced armature. The IEM comes complete with a set of tips, a very nicely braided cable with red connectors and splitter, and a very, very fancy pouch. This leather pouch has a snazzy designed button for the attached cord to wrap around to lock the carrier. Overall, the package is nicely done.

The RX-100's shell design is a unique one. Someone on the forum saw the photo I posted and said it looked like a metal strawberry. It sure does! The metal housing has a pretty intricate hole pattern and geometry that makes it stand out as a unique look in the sea of IEMs out there, while also looking quite tasteful. Not only is the outer face have a unique look, but so does the inner side that goes in your ear.

It looks a little strange at first, but once I put it in my ear, I was pretty content with how it fit in nicely and was very comfortable for long-term usage. That's a good thing, because I ended up enjoying the sound signature of this set, which I'll go over next.

Sound Impressions

The RX-100 Qin Armor has a very typical balanced signature that has a bit of a bass bump, slightly U-shaped mid-range, and a surprisingly smooth treble, that can perhaps be a tad on the dark side on the lower-treble area. It's quite non-fatiguing for my music choices, which I think can have listener fatigue given the amount of strings, cymbals and other percussion sounds going on in my staple of jazz, bluegrass and folk music.

The Ovidius' biggest strength is its fun, but relaxed sound that I find quite enjoyable for a lot of stuff. The biggest weakness is perhaps its just average all-around technical performance. Bass texturing and overall resolution is just average, however, it does do a pretty good job with imaging and separation.

While it's not totally one-noted, the dynamic driver performance is not the best I've heard. Its quantity is just right for me though. It's clean but also has enough there to also shake and punch, while never sounding bloated. This is a good thing for most of the music I listen to.

I spent a few good repeat listens of Jorja Smith's "Addicted" and "Gone" from her new record "Be Right Back" and really admired how nicely balanced and tuned this IEM is for these tracks with a deep bass line and drum beats that are very reminiscent of trip hop meets jazz. Smith's vocals are never too sharp or fatiguing and the bass lines have a nice rumble and power to them that really sets the tone of the song. 

The mid-range has a nice amount of warmth to it and despite its frequency response graph showing a slightly more forward vocal range at 1-2KHz, I didn't find this a problem listening to Of Monsters and Men's Nanna Bryndís Hilmarsdóttir sing in Olafur Arnald's piano ballad, "Particles." Her vocals did not have a nasally sound to it nor did Arnald's piano strikes come across as too sharp or too resonant.

If anything, I found Hilmarsdóttir's highest-octave to sound too restrained and lacking the excitement and energy I hear in other headphones and IEMs on this specific track, mainly towards the end when she really goes at it. It's muted a bit, but again, this does have a gentle and relaxed sound overall to it.

While the FR does show some pretty large peaks during the treble range, I never did experience that through listening myself. Yes, the treble isn't as smooth as I have heard on other IEMs like say the Viento or the Odin, but I was a tad surprised after seeing the graph and then trying to get these to pop with sibilance and not really experiencing any. So that's a good thing.

Final Thoughts

The Qin Armor name is perhaps a proper name for this IEM. The styling of the design does have a bit of a chest chain armor look to it, and the overall sound is shielded from going to extreme and for the most part is a rather safe tuning. This one is easy to like if I am being honest, and worked well with most music I threw at it.

It can be a little lacking in treble flair, but it has a fun bass presence and generally non-fatiguing sound. The price tag is probably justified with its interesting and unique choice of cable, shell design, and extra fancy pouch. Overall, I am pretty satisfied with this IEM and its only cons are really its average technical performance in the grand scheme of things.