Dita was born out of a dissatisfaction with existing audio products, and the belief that there was an answer that could satiate what can only be described as an immense passion for high quality audio. During the course of this review, I actually got to meet with Desmond of Dita (as they are all based in Singapore), and all I can say is that the guys behind these earphones have a serious love for music.
DISCLAIMER: This unit was loaned by Desmond @ Dita for the purposes of this review. We are neither affiliates nor employees of Dita. All media rights are reserved.
The Answers came in some of the largest boxes I have ever seen for earphones. It is even larger than that which contains the SE 846. Opening the box reveals a nice cover sheet welcoming the user to the Dita Experience and ensuring that the user’s earphones have met Dita’s exacting standards. “Exacting standards” might in fact be an understatement. To give a better idea of just how picky Dita has been with the quality of its products, Desmond told me that close to 80 percent of earphone housings were discarded simply because they weren’t up to snuff. Removing the cover sheet reveals a precision cut foam housing featuring the earphones, an equally large airplane adaptor and a nice 3.5 to 6.35 mm jack plug. Hefty literature is available for those who are interested in reading the User’s Manual.
Removing the foam cutout reveals two cases. One is a nice hard case with the Dita logo imprinted onto it and the other is a square leather case. If there’s anything wrong with this setup, it is that it is almost too comprehensive. I’m not a fan of the fact that extra cost was incurred for the production of two cases, both of which are high quality and provide no clear advantage over the other.
The included eartips work wonderfully, and I’m glad that Dita has acknowledged the difference in SQ that eartips can make. The smaller bore eartips create a more intimate experience, while the larger bore ones naturally expand soundstage and bass response. I stuck with the default eartips simply because they sounded the most balanced, and seemed like generally better choices for review purposes.
The Answer earphones (regular and Truth Edition) both feature extremely good build quality. The housing is milled from a solid block of 6061-T6 Aluminum using advanced CNC techniques/ machinery. The reasoning behind the use of metal in the housing is that plastics can add unwanted coloration. While I am not exactly equipped to test this, my experience with the Lab 1 has led me to believe that there is definitely truth behind this theory. I’m also a fan of metal housings because of their obvious durability. My only complaint is that the plastic connection between the housing and the cable isn’t flush with the housing’s circular profile (there is a bit of a gap between the metal and plastic) and the fact that there isn’t more “flexible” strain relief.
The cable on the regular Answer is called the “Fat Cable”. Dita spent a lot of time developing a cable that would not only be sonically sound (pun intended), but also durable and portable. They’ve definitely succeeded in that regard. As if that was not enough, users can buy themselves the Truth Edition that features a Van Den Hul cable. Combining some of Van Den Hul’s premier cabling techniques, the Truth cable features hybrid/fusion technology (which mixes various alloys and carbon fiber) and the 3T: True Transmission Technology. I am not going to open a can of worms by discussing the effect that cabling has on SQ, but if you find yourself wanting high quality cabling for your earphones, you can be assured that the Truth Edition has it. If there’s one improvement I’d make, it would be to add slightly more memory to the Fat Cable’s over-ear segment.
The y-split is extremely durable, and the cable terminates in a similarly impressive 3.5mm jack plug. Designed out of carbon fiber, it is supposedly superior sonically to other plugs due to its resonant properties. In addition, it is physically more durable and lighter than regular metal models. I personally liked the heft, but found it just a little extreme in terms of size.
Speaking with Desmond of Dita, I came to understand that the reference for the Dita earphones was the mighty Stax line of headphones. The goal for the earphones was to produce reference quality sound while maintaining solid musicality. Sound crazy? Well, Dita has to a large extent attained this lofty goal. For SQ, I tested the Truth Edition (due to time constraints). I am told that the only difference between the Truth Edition and regular edition is the cable, so I am expecting similar performance (once again, not going to enter the cable discussion).
Starting with the bass, the Answer reached deep with its dynamic driver, and provided an incredibly engaging experience. While certainly not as fast as balanced armature drivers, added musicality for a slight loss in speed is always a tradeoff I am willing to make (a trend you’ll see in my past reviews). In addition, it must be noted that the Answer earphones had significantly faster speed than most of their dynamic counterparts. What also makes this SQ work is the strong impact of the bass. At first, the lower frequency performance might even sound a little bit disconcerting (especially if you’re coming from traditionally tuned BA driver earphones), but after a bit of physical (and psychological) burn-in, everything starts to fit toghether.
The midrange response is quite conventional and uncolored. However, if there’s one thing to note, it is that the Answer earphones do feature a certain textural rawness in their upper mids. This might be a little off-putting at first, but burn-in will help to smooth some of the edginess out. Over time, I personally found myself liking this rather powerful sound. However, if you’re going for sweet, smooth mids, this might be something worth considering before making a purchase (some may even consider the SQ to be sibilant).
The treble is excellent, and provides just the right amount of sparkle. Never was it harsh, and I found it fairing very comparably against the ER-4PT (though the ER-4PT is still the treble reference in my opinion). Naturally, the powerful bass extension and good treble performance helped to extend the soundstage on the answers quite significantly. Width is solid, and the depth is truly impressive for an IEM. Coupled with excellent instrument separation, and you have yourself a very engaging and yet accurate pair of earphones.
Dita has done a fantastic job with the Answer earphones. For their first pair of earphones, I think that Dita has succeeded in creating an audio package that rivals offerings from even the most established of competitors. The excellent all-around SQ coupled with the good build quality make for some truly enjoyable earphones. If you’re looking to make a mid to high-end dynamic driver earphone purchase, then I’d gladly recommend the Dita Answer.
TYPE: 1 Ultra-wide Bandwith 10mm Transducer (aka single dynamic driver)
FREQUENCY RESPONSE: 18-25,000 Hz
SENSITIVITY: 102 db/mW
IMPEDANCE: 16 ohms
PRICE: 649 USD for Regular Edition, 999 USD for Truth Edition