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Hiby Digital XOE – The Cheapest Good Sounding IEMs

Hiby Digital XOE – The Cheapest Good Sounding IEMs

Hiby Digital XOE are a $29 USD pair of Entry-Level IEMs made to accompany the M300 DAP, and they come in three colors, white, black or blue, and can come with either a Type-C connector for smartphones or a 3.5mm connector for DAPs and portables. They are based on a 8mm DLC driver, and have an impedance of 21 OHMs, and have a low sensitivity of 104dB, but a max input power of 5mW. 



Hiby Digital is a new spinoff from the main Hiby company, designed for bringing an affordable, yet modern experience to music lovers everywhere. They will be handled by the same people who made Hiby who it is today, and it is mostly to Hiby what Jade Audio is to FiiO, a sub brand for entry-level or more modern products, with faster CPU, more versatile or more commercial designs. 

I’d like to thank Hiby Digital for providing the sample for this review, in exchange for my honest opinion. We are not receiving any incentive for this review and Audiophile-Heaven has no affiliation with Hiby Digital beyond this review. This review is a description of my personal experience.


Product Link

You can grab one from Hiby here – https://store.hiby.com/products/hiby-digital-xoe


Build Quality/Aesthetics/Fit/Comfort

While it may be curious why I’m reviewing such an entry-level IEM, as you likely expect it to be poor, the answer is that it actually is quite good. The cable is not detachable, and gone are most of the bells and whistles that audiophiles typically care about, but we have a remote / microphone on the cable, and the fitting is sublime. Those XOE IEMs are incredibly small and I can barely feel them in my ears, making the likes of Oriveti OD100 feel like huge tanks in my ears. The cable is of an average quality, it feels frail and although I just unboxed them, the white cable is already a bit dirty. 

The passive noise isolation is not great as Hiby Digital XOE is open in the back, but with music playing at quiet volumes I cannot hear myself typing on my keyboard, and they do not have any kind of driver flex or void while being inserted, plus the cable despite being made for straight-down wearing, has very little microphonic noise, and they have a proper fit. Basically, the comfort is 100% positive and I can recommend them for it easily. 

As most people looking at those come from Apple style of earbuds that typically get introduced in the box of entry-level smartphones, XOE fits much better as it is made much better than those, the microphone quality is better, and it is a proper and proper sounding IEM despite the entry-level pricing. The sound leakage is extremely high, to the point where it is about as high as you’d expect from an open-back IEM. It is sensitive to hiss and source noise and it will show those easily, but also super easy to drive. The cable is a bit shorter than for most IEMs, having just 1.1 meters. 

Since I have the 3.5mm variant, I’ve paired the XOE with a number of sources including Shanling UA1 Plus, xDuoo TA-84, Hiby Digital M300, Hiby R3 II, JDS Labs Element III Mk2 Boosted, Aune S9c PRO, SMSL M300, and FiiO K9 PRO ESS. XOE is really easy to drive, somewhat sensitive to noise, but I would not worry too much about driving it well, this is a tiny IEM made for portables, smartphones with a jack would do just fine. 


Sound Quality

It is no mystery that I review products back-to-back and I’ve been reviewing Oriveti OD100 just before the Hiby Digital XOE, and despite XOE being less than half the price of the OD100, the sound of XOE is much better in the bass, the bass is more substantial, the mid bass is less recessed, and the overall clarity / detail is much better. With a better fit as well, XOE feels like a proper IEM and I am happy to see it priced so low to make them the cheapest good sounding IEMs out there. The sound of the Hiby Digital XOE is clean, detailed, sparkly, but not forced, with a natural midrange, natural bass and everything just sounds as it should, with a natural soundstage and clean overall presentation. 

The bass extends as low as about 35Hz, and it feels full, with a fairly smooth presentation, smooth transients, and with a clean presentation. The bass easily fills the head while enjoying the XOE, and we have an open presentation with a wide but impactful bass. The bass has an even quantity all across the range, from the sub to the mid to the upper bass, giving a healthy amount of body and presence to all instruments. 

The midrange is clean, has a smooth voicing, with a really natural and pleasing vocal presentation for both male and female voices. There is a bit of a peak around the range of soprano and sharper female voices, but it stays within what is still natural. Male voices are still powerful, and happy music sounds happy, sad music sounds sad. The soundstage is wide, holographic with a fair instrument separation. The Open-Back design at the back helps a lot with the instrument separation. We have a good amount of detail and clarity. Transients are on the hard and dry side, and this causes the sound to be a bit harsh at times, but that is mostly for the upper midrange and it helps keep the sound as detailed as possible. 

The treble has even more solid transients, and with a dry character, this helps with detail and resolution in the higher range staying crisp, we have a crisp and airy presentation up top, with the treble extending as high as 16 kHz, after which it rolls off softly. This makes the whole sound as clean and airy as you can expect from the price range. The volume control is ok, Hiby Digital XOE sounds controlled even at medium – high volumes at the dynamic driver can handle dynamics well, compression happening above 100 dB, and after you reach that volume the sound stays wide and holographic, but dynamics get quickly compressed, everything is presented in a wall of sound fashion. This being said, details are still presented and not omitted, the entire presentation being satisfactory and clean. 


Value and Conclusion

When looking at the 29 USD price tag, you know this is going to be a killer deal if it can nail the build quality and ergonomics, and to be fair, it mostly does everything just right. XoE does not feel premium or expensive, but it doesn’t feel cheap compared to IEMs that you typically find at 30 USD, and it actually feels better made, and most importantly, much more comfortable being a jewel in the mud that you have to test to believe it exists. 

At the end of the day, if you’re looking for an IEM that sounds really good but has outstanding comfort, good ergonomics, which is super duper easy to drive, and which is actually a hot deal, I recommend the HIBY Digital XOE with an open heart, it is fully worth it as an entry-level IEM.


Product Link

You can grab one from Hiby here – https://store.hiby.com/products/hiby-digital-xoe

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Full Playlist used for this review

We listened to more songs than those named in this playlist, but those are excellent for identifying a sonic signature.  I recommend trying most of the songs from this playlist, especially if you’re searching for new music! The playlists are different for Spotify, Tidal and Youtube, and based on the songs I enjoy and are available on each!




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