FiiO is a well-respected brand, predominantly known for their excellent amplifiers and Hi-Fi music players. Although their EM3 earbuds aren't anywhere near being their flagship model, they do offer a decent sound and a superb comfort, especially for earbuds.
However, when compared to other, often lower-priced earbuds, the EM3 fall short in terms of sound quality. Add to that the relatively cheap build quality - are they really worth their price, considering the alternatives?
Overall decent sound quality on lower volumes.
Very loud and easy to drive, despite their alleged Ω47 impedance.
Extremely comfortable to wear for a prolonged time.
Aggressive lower-mids cause an uncomfortable listening on higher volumes.
Excessive mid-bass adds muddiness to the sound.
The treble is recessed relatively to the lows and mids.
Cheap build quality for the price.
Package & Accessories
Ear Pads - Foam:
6 × Black
Build & Materials
Plastic (glossy), metal mesh faceplate
Plastic (glossy), single-button
TPE, no strain reliefs
TPE, 111cm, soft, bend-retaining
TPE, 90° angled, short, soft strain relief
Comfort & Fit
Considering the fact that I find many earbuds uncomfortable or not sealing properly, the EM3 are actually one of the most comfortable earbuds I've ever used. They sit very firmly, seal perfectly and don't cause any discomfort even after prolonged use.
Lows / Bass
The EM3 are bassy and very warm, even a bit muddy. Since these earphones seal so well, I could hear every single hum and rumble, but not necessarily to my satisfaction. Although the sub-bass is impressive, for earbuds, I think that the mid-bass is a bit excessive.
Mids / Vocals
The main problem is within the mid-range. The excessive peak around 700Hz creates an uncomfortable listening experience, specifically when you turn the volume up a bit to hear the subdued treble properly. After using these earphones for a while on medium volume, I actually got a bit of a headache. The mid-range, alonh with the mid-bass, are just too loud.
Highs / Treble
The highs, although not bad-sounding, are a bit on the muffled side. You would need to increace the volume to enjoy some detail, but then you'd be hit by the aggressive mids.