Shanling ME500 IEM Quick Review: Natural and Balanced!!
Shanling is a widely known name in the Chinese audio industry. They have been releasing brilliant quality product, with premium built and outstanding tuning. Quite recently the brand has released their latest flagship pair of in-ear monitors, the Shanling ME500. The ME500 features a triple driver hybrid unit each side consisting of a dual Knowles Balanced Armature unit and a 10mm dual magnet dynamic driver unit. The earpieces are completely made up of Brass material, which is a very costly material and if you want, you can also get an even more premium variant of the ME500, the Shanling ME500 Platinum. The platinum has a platinum coating all around the shells and as we all know platinum is one of the most precious materials on earth.
Today we have got a unit for ourselves, and we are going to share a quick review for all of you. Please note that we have got a review sample unit so we can’t tell you about the packaging of this pair. Before we start you can buy a pair of Shanling ME500 from our store here.
The Shanling ME500 is a very premium built product. Nowadays all the IEM’s available in the market are either made up of Aluminium Alloy material or 3D printed Resin Material, but the Shanling ME500 earpieces are made up of Brass shells. It further has multiple layers of coating providing the pair a shiny, mirror-like look to it. The earpieces themselves have got a small form factor, these fit me nicely and comfortably. Since the earpieces are made up of Brass, they are on a bit heavier side as compared to the Aluminium or Resin material made IEMs, but they feel and look denser and are more durable here. They have a shiny look to them, and are not prone to scratches or touch prints. The earpieces have a universal MMCX connection type, which will make it easier for people to upgrade their cable in the future. The cable included here in the package is an SPC cable with a 3.5 mm termination plug.
Overall the build quality of Shanling ME500 is solid and premium. It is built like a tank, but that might put some people off because the earpieces are a bit heavy as compared to other IEM’s in the market.
In terms of sound quality, the Shanling ME500 is a brilliant sounding pair of in-ear monitors. It has a slightly warm sound signature with a balanced and natural sound clarity. The output is crisp and full of details. The bass is deep and punchy, the 10mm DD really works well over here. The mids section is rich with crisp acoustic details and lush vocals. And the treble section is pretty smooth and detailed, there is no kind of sibilance or harshness with the pair even at louder volumes. But I would like to discuss the different parts of the frequency range separately.
The Shanling ME500 has got a punchier lower end, it has got a quick and deep bass response. The bass feels snappy and clean. It is controlled well within its range and doesn’t overlap with details in the other frequency segments. We loved how well controlled and punchy the bass is here, we could feel the grooves in EDM tracks by Daft Punk, Bad Guy by Billie Ellish is something that we consider a bit heavier on the lower end, and the Shanling ME500 showed great control over the bass section there. The lower end is fast, snappy and deep.
The pair has a slight U shaped balanced signature, the mids feel alive and rich with details. The section is fuelled with brilliant sounding acoustic detail representation and natural-sounding vocals. The vocals feel really nice, listening to songs by John Mayer, MTV Unplugged Shawn Nirvana sessions, both sound fuller and transparent. The vocals have a relaxed feel to them, a warm feeling to them.
The Shanling ME500 has precise details in the treble section, the pair does good detail retrieval and feel smooth. It doesn’t have a harsh feeling to it. We listened to several heavy tracks like In Mist She Was Standing By Opeth, Apocalypse by Tina Guo, the pair showed great transparency and clarity. The entire treble section is very smooth and detailed with crisp instrument clarity and no harshness or sibilance.
Soundstage and Instrument Separation:-
The soundstage has an airy representation here. It feels wide and engaging. And with brilliant detailing and extensions at the treble section, it provides great instrument separation too.
We are really impressed by the balanced and detailed sound output from Shanling ME500, it carries a good punch in the lower end, with life-like natural vocals, and a smooth detailed treble section. The pair provides natural instrumental Timbre and tonality, with a strong and tough build quality that looks rich and premium. Though the earpieces are on a bit heavier side as compared to other IEM’s, but that won’t be an issue when you hear the high-quality sound from the pair.
If you liked our quick review for the Shanling ME500 and would like to buy a pair for yourself, you can buy from our store here.