In this review, we take a look at the TANSIO MIRAI TSMR-3 PRO. The TSMR-3 Pro has 3 balanced armatures per side and 3 tuning switches that provide up to 7 different sound signatures.
This is the upgraded version of the original TSMR-3 (7-Star) that I reviewed recently here. The new model has an improved bass driver and subtle tuning improvements, along with some new and more colourful designs.
Tuning switches give you several sound signatures to choose from
Excellent build quality
Comfort and noise isolation
Good value for money
The included cable doesn’t match the quality of the earphones
This sample was provided for the purpose of an honest review. All observations and opinions here are my own based on my experience with the product.
Package and Accessories
Unlike the original version, the TSMR-3 Pro now comes in a proper branded retail box. The box is plain white except for the Tansio Mirai brand name and logo printed on the top. Opening the box reveals a large semi-rigid zipper case, inside which are the earphones and all the included accessories. Let’s see what you get in total.
TSMR-3 Pro earphones
Large semi-rigid zipper case
Detachable 2-pin cable
Tool for adjusting the dip switches
10 pairs of various wide-bore and narrow-bore silicone eartips
That is a pretty satisfying bundle right there. I was very pleased to see the variety of eartips provided which is something often overlooked with universal IEMs. If you’re not getting a good fit and seal you’re not getting the most out of your earphones so having a proper selection of eartips can really make a difference.
The zipper case is too big to fit in a pocket but is a welcome addition nonetheless. For storage on the go, the included soft pouch works well. The little tool for adjusting the switches is great too as it makes changing the switches a whole lot easier.
Build Quality and Design
The TSMR-3 Pro is available in a wide range of colours for both the shells and the faceplates. There is also a full custom option should you wish to get a proper CIEM. My review unit has clear shells and speckled red faceplates which are frankly quite stunning to look at. On the left faceplate is TSMR branding and on the right faceplate is the company logo.
The resin housings are built to a very high standard and there are no visible bubbles, smears or flaws anywhere. You can clearly see the wiring and balanced armature drivers within. On the rear face of the housings are the 3 dip switches that allow for sound customization which I’ll talk about more later.
Just like the original model the nozzles on the Pro have a sort of unpolished finish which adds a texture that serves to hold your eartips securely in place without the need for a ridge or lip. One thing worth noting here is that the nozzle diameter is wider than average so eartips with a narrow core can be very difficult or near impossible to attach.
On the top edge are the 0.78 mm 2-pin sockets that sit flush on the surface. Overall the TSMR-3 Pro has an outstanding build quality that can match anything else in its class.
Comfort and Noise Isolation
I find the TSMR-3 Pro to be extremely comfortable and can wear them for hours at a time easily. It’s worth noting that if you have very small ear canals the wider than average nozzles may cause you some discomfort.
Noise isolation is well above average and with the right eartips, these IEMs will block out a good deal of outside noise. That makes these suitable for pretty much any situation and there are few IEMs that offer better passive isolation outside of full custom units. Noise leak is very minimal and even if you play your music loud nobody will be likely to notice.
The included cable is a twisted 4-strand affair with a glossy TPU sheath. It has a right-angled 3.5 mm plug, a metal cylindrical Y-split and a transparent plastic chin slider. At the top are the 2-pin connectors and some pre-formed ear guides.
There are minimal microphonics but the thinness above the Y-split and aggressive spiraling of the ear guides make the cable extremely prone to tangling. What’s worse though is that it simply feels cheap and does not match the quality of the earphones. If I were spending over $200 on an IEM I would expect a much better cable.
Gear used for testing includes the FiiO M6 and iBasso DX120 for my portable sources. On the desktop, the FiiO K3 and Arcam ir DAC-II were my DACs of choice and both of those were fed FLAC files from MusicBee on my Windows PC.
A note on the tuning switches. There are 7 tuning configurations in total but I’ll just briefly cover the 3 main ones here. Each of these configs only alters the bass and midrange and the treble is left unaffected. Below is the tuning guide taken from the Penon Audio page:
Tuning mode instructions
(0 means switch down, 1/2/3 means switch up.)
100: Bass enhancement mode
120: Mixed tuning
020:All balanced mode
103: Mixed tuning
003: Mid-treble enhancement mode
023: Mixed tuning
123: Mixed tuning (lowest impedance)
In its default configuration, the TSMR-3 Pro has a nimble, balanced and clear sound. It has a typically tight BA bass, very clean midrange and smooth highs. While I enjoyed the default setting, I found that 100 suited my tastes the best. It adds some weight to the bass and extra body to the overall tonality but does not compromise the resolution or layering.
The bass is fast and very controlled with good texture and clean leading edges. Sub-bass notes extend well and are far-reaching but like most balanced armature IEMs you won’t get your teeth rattled.
Mid-bass is punchy and carries a good impact without showing any bleed or bloat. In Hilltop Hoods’ “Shredding The Balloon” the kick drum and bass guitar carry the tune with plenty of weight and body but they don’t compromise the midrange in the least. When I switched on the FiiO K3’s bass boost during the track the Pro responded eagerly in a non-destructive manner.
This is where the TSMR-3 Pro does its best work. It has excellent tonal accuracy, plus it is resolving and layered. Vocals have good articulation and there’s excellent clarity throughout. Neither male nor female vocals get any preference; the Pro brings them both with the same richness and vibrancy.
The mids are really engaging and the Pro makes it feel effortless. Instruments and vocals blend perfectly with the bass and treble. The sound is very natural with just the right amount of body to produce fullness while at the same time avoiding any muddiness or overt thickness.
The Pro’s treble is tuned really nicely with just the right density, airiness and presence. It is the least affected of all the frequencies when changing the tuning mode and that’s a good thing because the treble is just right (in my opinion).
This is another area that has been improved since the original version. Where the first model could sometimes lack density the Pro gets it just right. There’s no harshness or sibilance but it has sufficient energy and detail when needed.
The soundstage feels like a large room or small hall and has an average width with a good amount of depth. It does feel larger than the original model and more holographic as well, with better layering and imaging. Instrument separation is above average which adds to the sense of separate elements owning their own space on the stage.
iBasso IT01s ($199)
The IT01s is exceptionally fast for a dynamic driver and matches the TSMR in terms of speed. It has a hint more mid-bass and significantly more sub-bass response which provides that wonderful dynamic driver rumble. The iBasso has more sub-bass extension.
The midrange is further behind the bass and treble than it is on the TSMR and male vocals sit further back but they are more textured on the IT01s. The IT01s has a more energetic treble with slightly better extension.
Soundstage is larger on the IT01s and both IEMs have similar imaging ability. The IT01s has greater stage width than the TSMR.
The CTZ-6 is more neutral across the board. It has similar bass extension and a similar quantity of sub-bass. The CTZ-6 has less mid-bass quantity and is more balanced with the midrange.
Vocals and the midrange are more forward on the CTZ-6, especially female vocals. Midrange notes on the TSMR-3 Pro have more body and note thickness, making it sound smoother and the CTZ-6 sound leaner and more neutral.
The TSMR has a slightly more energetic treble and has more density while the CTZ-6 treble is lighter and airier. In terms of soundstage, the CTZ-6 has a slightly larger stage with more width but the TSMR has better imaging capabilities.
The earlier version of the TSMR-3 was brilliant and the TSMR-3 Pro takes it even further. It has more fullness in the bass along with smoother highs and an improved soundstage. Add to that the new styling and colours and you’ve got yourself a very good in-ear monitor. I would, however, like to see a better cable included and suggest if you buy this IEM you give it a cable upgrade as well.
Now the switches make a bigger impact too, giving you even more control over the sound tuning. Tight bass, smooth midrange with great clarity and a detailed, smooth treble makes this one of the best-performing earphones at this price point. It was easy to recommend the TSMR before and with this upgraded version it’s even easier.
Driver configuration: 3 balanced armature drivers per side
Color: 9 colors available (for faceplate) ,transparent clear color cavity .