Jialai Carat Review

Jialai Carat review featured

In this article, I’m reviewing the Jialai Carat IEMs. The JC features a single 10mm titanium-plated DLC dynamic driver and polished aluminium alloy shells. It’s priced at $69.

Disclaimer: This sample was provided by HiFiGo for an honest review. All observations and opinions here are my own, based on my experience with the product.

Jialai Carat Review
Verdict
The Jialai Carat is a competent IEM for the price but fails to stand out amongst the competition.
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Pros
Detail retrieval
Generous accessories
Good build quality
Very robust cable
Cons
Tonality is very fit dependent
Treble can be strident at times
3.5
Our Score
WHERE TO BUY

Jialai Carat

Table of Contents
Specifications

Sensitivity: 106dB
Impedance: 32Ω
Frequency response: 10Hz – 28kHz
Cable: High-purity OFC
Connector: 0.78mm 2-pin

Box front
In the Box
  • Jialai Carat IEMs
  • Detachable 0.78mm 2-pin OFC cable
  • Carrying case
  • 9* pairs of silicone eartips
Jialai Carat design

Design

The Jialai Carat has polished aluminium alloy shells with faceted faceplates. The design looks familiar and it makes me wonder if it wasn’t purloined from the Moondrop Blessing 3. That aside, the Jialai Carat (JC) is a handsome IEM but one that is prone to fingerprints and smudges.

I found the JC to be comfortable to wear. The shells are fairly small and the shape is ergonomic, at least for my ears. However, due to its short nozzles, I had to use some of my larger eartips to get a secure fit. Passive noise isolation is about average.

The included OFC cable is braided and has a matte black sheath. It looks generic but it’s thicker and more robust than you might expect. It has an aluminium plug, Y-splitter, chin slider and angled plastic 2-pin connectors. There is some slight microphonics but that can be attenuated by using the chin slider.

Sound

Gear used for testing includes the iFi Audio UNO, KGUSS T5Pro and FiiO KA17. The Jialai Carat is easy to drive and doesn’t have any special source requirements.

Bass

The Jialai Carat has a full-bodied bass with good texture and dynamics. It’s punchy and warm but still nimble with swift attack and decay. There’s minimal bleed thanks to the quality of the driver and the controlled bass. The sub-bass has a tight rumble and sounds powerful but not overdone. Although the bass quantity is boosted, it doesn’t delve into basshead territory.

Midrange

JC’s midrange is defined first and foremost by its clarity, a result of the raised upper mids and lower treble areas. This lift also brightens the midrange, but this is counterbalanced by the warmth of the bass. Vocals are articulate and detailed but their fullness is very fit-dependent – anything but an optimal seal results in the midrange sounding thin and harsh.

Treble

The core treble is boosted in the 6kHz-8kHz area, adding to JC’s clarity and detail retrieval. This kind of treble tuning involves some risk – done poorly it creates a harsh and fatiguing sound. However, in this case, the enhanced treble is offset by the bass in addition to some attenuation in the upper treble around 10kHz. Having said that, I would caution treble-sensitive listeners because the end result is still rather bright.

Soundstage & Technicalities

The Carat showcases good detail retrieval and instrument separation. The soundstage has average dimensions and instrument placement within the stage is fairly precise.

Jialai Carat IEMs

Verdict

Overall, I think the Jialai Carat is a good IEM that could have been better with some minor adjustments. The main offender, in my opinion, is the shell design and subsequent difficulty of getting a stable fit because of the short nozzles. In a segment as heavily contested as the sub-$100 single DD IEM one, the Jialai Carat proves to be competent but is not likely to leave a lasting impact on the scene.

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