Letshuoer S12 Pro IEM

Letshuoer S12 Pro IEM


Letshuoer S12 Pro IEMLetshuoer? Me neither, but fear not, there is something good here. Founded six years ago by a former Panasonic Sales Director, Letshuoer has focussed on in-ear monitors solely, for drummers and other artists as well as audio nuts. Some of their products feature up to 12 hybrid drivers, titanium materials, and multiple crossovers, so there is some pedigree here.

Design

This Letshuoer S12 Pro IEM features a custom 14.8mm planar magnetic driver which is the first I’ve seen of planar magnetic technology in an in-ear monitor. I do know, however, Audeze does a planar IEM, at well over a thousand pounds. The idea of a planar magnetic driver is to have less distortion over a conventional diaphragm and a faster response, yielding more accurate sound reproduction and better bass. With a claimed easy driving 102dB sensitivity, this all sounds like a plan.

The planar driver in these S12 Pro IEMs is housed in an aluminium chassis coloured in a ‘Deep Space Blue’ finish. There is a barely visible vent hole in this in-ear chamber construction.

Letshuoer S12 Pro IEM

Switchable jacks, detail

The S12 Pro IEM come with a monocrystalline silver-plated copper cable, comprising ‘392 strands’. Interestingly, this cable is switchable to either 2.5mm/3.5mm/4.4mm jack plugs. It is unclear to me that the balanced connection claimed is possible with the dual pin arrangement.  The earbud end is terminated in a standard 0.78mm dual pin.

Quality

…there is a lovely finish to these CNC aluminium machined buds…

It has to be said there is a lovely finish to these CNC aluminium machined buds and the matt finish deep space blue is rather cool indeed.

The standard two-pin connector at the bud end feels particularly secure and the cable that comes with the S12 Pro IEM is pre-formed at the ear end which is always preferable.

Letshuoer S12 Pro IEM

Letshuoer S12 Pro IEM with everything included (not the iFi GO Blu or the Pioneer!)

Out of the Box

The box the S12 Pro IEMs come in is jam-packed with manuals, moulded foam, quality control cards and ear tips of all kinds. I have little need for this lot and of course, it reflects our consumption and our throwaway planet but that is the way it is, it is no criticism of Letshuoer, only us as consumers.

In the box, there are the S12 Pro IEMs and then the following (copied and pasted); 3 x Foam Tips (S/M/L), 3 x Black Silicone Ear Tips (S/M/L), 3 x White Silicone Ear Tips (S/M/L), 1 x Headphone Cable, 1 x 2.5mm Balanced Modular Jack Plug, 1 x 3.5mm Single-ended Modular Jack Plug, 1 x 4.4mm Balanced Modular Jack Plug.

There is a rather nice, rounded leatherette-style carry case for storage.

Price £169/$169

Performance

Letshuoer S12 Pro IEM

Letshuoer S12 Pro IEM with Pioneer XDP-100R

Review Equipment

I’m walking, mainly, with my Pixel 7 Pro and an iFi GO Blu 4.4mm. I also have a Pioneer XDP-100R portable player. On the desktop, I’ve been listening with the Chord Mojo 2 from my laptop.

Physically

I have run in the IEMs for a day or so with the Pioneer plugged into power with a random Tidal playlist on repeat.

Setting up the cables and earbuds was a bit physically tedious for me, but I ended up with the smallest black silicone tips in the end, which is where I started, and I knew I would end up. I have to say it is nice to revert to buds without any touch control as I’m often pausing or skipping accidentally my podcast if I need to adjust an earbud’s position.

I’ve had no issues with the buds falling out at all and the ear loops are fit for purpose, the iFi GO Blu is the business really for wired listening on the move.

Streaming the Qobuz App on Pixel

Resolution

I find these S12 Pro IEMs to be audibly light and spacious to listen to on the soundstage, with excellent resolution. Immediately, I tend towards Ben Howard’s track, Diamonds (Qobuz, 16-bit, 44.1kHz), the guitar detail is pitch perfect and the bassline is compact, and fast and the track dances around really nicely at the close. Similarly, the guitar detail in the intro to Everything on the same album is beautiful in these IEMs.

Tonality – Bass

Turning to my go-to bass track, Benson Boone’s GHOST TOWN (Qobuz, 24-bit, 44.1kHz) there is great bass response here and it goes deep and low, indeed, it is lovely, surprising too, there’s a lot more bass here than the ADVAR, that I really liked back in August last year and it is well controlled.

Starry Eyed Surprise (Tidal, 16-bit, 44.1kHz), Paul Oakenfold’s dance classic, positively bounces along in these S12s and there is no fluff or muddiness, the bass line is delivered with pace and timing, it is impressive.

Checking in with Coldplay’s Everglow (Qobuz, 24-bit, 192kHz) I confirm the depth and speed of response with the bassline with these IEMs.

Tonality – Midrange

…nothing is amiss in the midrange here either

Time to check in on the midrange and for both ends, it’s Taylor Swift’s collaboration with Bon Iver in exile (Qobuz, 24-bit, 44.1kHz), produced with the lightest touch by Aaron Dressner. Here the lower midrange in Justin Vernon’s baritone vocal is crisp and resonant with true emotion as he opens up his narrative that forms a counterpoint between two former lovers. Swift’s honey vocal is liquid and in perfect contrast to Vernon’s, the S12s do a great job with this track.

Turning to Thom Yorke’s rasping vocal in Codex (Qobuz, 24-bit, 44.1kHz), nothing is amiss in the midrange here either.

Tonality – Treble

I’m finding the treble to be open and airy, in a good way. If you can pull apart guitars and vocals and cymbals in Nickleback’s Burn it to the Ground, something good is happening and it is here with these S12s. The treble seems well-defined and clear.

On the move with the Pioneer XDP-100

Letshuoer S12 Pro IEM

S12 Pro IEM lettering detail

The Pioneer, I guess, is still a good source, though I may prefer the Mojo 2 on the desktop. The S12s are not quite as open and exciting as the Mojo and this is clear here but nonetheless, these IEMs, being so easy to drive, certainly give a scaled and good response. On the move this is a decent listen and the S12s feel like a worthy travel companion.  The only issue I do have is that the jack is rather large on the move, a trade-off with the switchable option I guess.

Musical Interlude

Here’s the Musical Interlude Playlist, I couldn’t find Paul Oakenfold’s track on Qobuz.

Thoughts

Leading edge technology, …fast bass control with good depth and excellent resolution combine here to deliver a classy planar magnetic in-ear solution

I find, I’ve said this often in the last few years, most of this review audio gear is generally very good, I won’t write about it if there’s nothing favourable to say. These in-ear monitors are designed by Letshuoer and are made where most of our electronics come from anyway, China.  There are fine electronics here and these S12 Pro have high-level planar magnetic technology trickling into a very competitive price point.

In my view, always, set your budget and if you can listen, do so. Go to a HiFi show or a dealer and listen and then listen again, then decide.

Overall

Leading edge technology, delivering fast bass control with good depth and excellent resolution combine here to deliver a classy planar magnetic in-ear solution. The treble is nicely clear and there can be no complaints at this price point if you want a wired on-the-go in-ear solution.

 

copyright HF&MS Ltd 2022

Love
Bass depth
Open soundstage
Resolution
Secure

Like
Cable
Preformed earloops

Wish
The interchangeable jack was tighter
The interchangeable jack was smaller

Specification

Full details are on the company’s site.

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