There’s so much chatter on the inter-web around the Tin Audio T2, that I feel like I might be too late to the party. But it is never too late to recommend a good product, is it?
As far as budget earphones (in-ear monitors) go, this one is evidently the king of mid-range performance. And, if you listen to a lot of Bollywood or Kollywood songs, the Tin Audio T2 might just suit your needs more than any other earphone in the under-Rs 5,000 category at the moment.
Tin Audio T2: sound signature
I absolutely love Hindi Zahra’s raspy vocals. It’s been at least five years since I discovered her Soul Kitchen acoustic session of the fantastically soulful Beautiful Tango, and it never gets old. Even today. However, I have heard her gorgeously-layered vocals - which is raspy and sweet at the same time - overpowering the acoustic guitar so many times that I never expected it to surprise me again. But the Tin Audio T2 just brings out some next-level feel (for the lack of a better word) in the song. I mean, this is the first time I actually intently listened to Zahra play percussions on the book. It was clear and crisp.
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Another indie artist (this time closer to home) who I absolutely loved listening to on the Tin Audio T2 was Prateek Kuhad. This dude has been creating some of the most soulful songs in recent times that makes you want to cuddle a cloud. When he croons Raat Razi, while strumming and slapping his guitar rhythmically, the Tin Audio T2 comes into its own, giving each separate tonality its due. It's a very exquisite sound for a pair of earphones that don’t cost too much.
The Tin Audio T2's sound signature is not exactly musical, but it is not neutral either. It is kind of a balanced sound with a few treble peaks above the 10KHz frequencies. But, it is never piercing, unlike other budget audiophile products. The sound signature is very mid-forward, with a tight bass but in feeble quantities. It never overpowers the other frequencies.
Moving on, I switched to some atmospheric music by Sigur Ros to test the soundstage of the Tin Audio T2. It is not very wide but I don’t expect that from any IEM, let alone a budget one. Obviously, the Soundsly Apaisant and, the more expensive, Audeze iSine earphones are exceptions to this rule. But what’s really good on the T2 is the instrument separation.
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Trust me, you are going to love how you can listen to every instrument clearly. And the placement of these instruments in your head as intended by the original mix is great too. I had a lot of fun listening to my favourite song for testing the imaging - Do I Wanna Know by the Arctic Monkeys. The penultimate section when the percussions, the electric sounds, the vocals, the chorus, all the parts come together, I know that the Tin Audio T2 has what it takes to completely immerse you in the song.
All in all, the T2’s sound is balanced, very mid-forward, and easy to approach even for non-audiophiles.
P.S. My source for listening to music was a mix of the Poco F1, OnePlus 6, and the Cayin N3.
Tin Audio T2: design, fit, and specs
The box that has the Tin Audio T2 is the most unique IEM packaging I’ve seen in a while. It is a nice blue box that opens like a book to reveal the IEMs under it. However, the box doesn’t have too many accessories. You get a few tips, which includes the blue foam one, but that’s about it. There’s no case even.
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The T2 itself is big, chunky piece of equipment. The earphones have detachable cables that are connected by MMCX connectors. The cable has an I-shaped gold-plated fat cable. This cable doesn’t retain kinks and it looks good too. This is one of the better looking and sturdy earphones in this price range. There’s no mic though if you are looking for one. I found the fit to be good enough with the blue foam tips, and it has a good level of isolation too. But, it juts out of the ear, so you cannot sleep with it on the side for sure.
There are dual dynamic drivers - in 10mm and 6mm sizes each. And, it doesn’t take much to drive these earphones at 12ohms of impedance. Interestingly, the spec sheet says that the Tin Audio T2 can go as low as 7Hz and as high as 40KHz, which is uncommon in this price range. Note this: if you are looking for a mic, you aren’t getting one with this.
Should you buy the Tin Audio T2?
Yes, at any given chance you should consider the T2. This is another one of those rare finds that deserve more marketing moolah for promotion. These things should be flying off the shelves. Under 5k, the Tin Audio T2 and Soundsly Appaisant are easily my two favourite in-ear monitors at the moment. You can’t go wrong with either one of the two. Also, the Tin Audio T2 is more affordable of the two and that turns the tide in its favour.
At the moment, you can pick up the Tin Audio T2 from HiFinage, which sells it officially in India. Or, you can choose to import from AliExpress. Whatever works for you.