Where to buy: [link]
Driver configuration: 1DD+2BA
Frequency response: 3-20k Hz
Impedance: 14 Ohm
Sensitivity: 109 dB
Many thanks to UfoEar for providing this review sample. You can check their AliExpress official store to get their products, if you’re interested.
Unboxing and first impressions
This is not your usual box. As well as the brand’s name, the presentation of the product wants to be as alien as possible. So, the black carboard box contains a metal Ufo, which is the actual carrying case of the IEMs (pretty solid, I have to admit) placed inside the holder of all the ear tips. There is a vast choice of tips: three pairs of silicon ones (1st kind), four pairs of another kind of silicon ones, two different sizes of foam tips (medium and large). The IEMs come already attached to the cable, and they are pretty difficult to detach. Fun fact, on the box they claim these IEMs are Bluetooth ready, but they actually come without any wireless cable or module. And, even though they surely produce a BT cable, they don’t sell it on their AliExpress page. I like the overall presentation and the originality, but I don’t think it is the most functional ever (if you need to switch tips, you have to carry them another way, because their holder is a nice stand but not a handy one. It’s a kind touch to have the possibility to play with the ufo, for example by using some magnets to simulate its fly. This is something claimed by the company. And it’s strange, because these earphones are extremely professional-sounding, if you ask me. So why would a pro have to play with a case? Mystery. But I appreciate the will to distinguish themselves from the others. I would have liked to find a cleaning tool for this price, but the accessories are actually a complete package.
The Ufo112 are 3D-printed, and their shape is extremely comfortable. The nozzle is not a separate part, and it has two bores. Its shape is oval and not circular, so it’s not so easy to put and remove tips (especially foam ones and third parts’ silicon ones). The cable is very difficult to detach, because the build of both the buds and the cable itself is really solid. The cable is an 8 core braided copper one, really sturdy and gold-plated on the 3.5mm connector; the y split and the details, like the chin slider, are all made of metal. The fit of the 112 is comfortable and non-intrusive, both with silicon and foam tips.
My sources: FiiO M7 (standalone; to XDUOO XP-2/iFi xDSD via Bluetooth; to XP-2 via line-out; to xDSD via USB), Dodocool DA106 (mainly to XDUOO XP-2 via line-out); Mi MIX 2 to XP-2 and xDSD (via Bluetooth and USB), to Zorloo ZuperDAC-S, to Audirect Whistle; MacBook Pro 2012 to Focusrite 2i2.
My music: Jon Hopkins, “Singularity”; Billie Eilish, “When do we fall asleep, where do we go?”; Coldplay, “Ghost stories”; Bon Iver (Discography); Jack Garratt, “Phase”; Jamie Cullum, “Taller”; Sia, “Colour the small one”; The Bloody Beetroots & Jet, “The great electronic swindle”; Jacob Collier, “In my room” and “Djesse (Vol.1)”; John Coltrane, “Giant steps”; Lauv, “I met you when I was 18”, Oh Wonder (Discography), Radiohead (Discography), ecc..
My files: MP3, M4A, FLAC, ALAC, few DSDs (Pink Floyd).
The Ufo-112 are among the better In ear monitors I’ve ever tried. Let’s explain why.
My IEM game started from the bottom with the RevoNext QT2 and the KZ ZS3, then jumped to the other side of the market with the Unique Melody Mason V3, then placed itself in the middle, with some interesting products and some disappointing ones. I have some BGVP DM6 but I don’t think they are worth their hype, I have the AudioSense T800 which are very hyped as well but they leave me bittersweet, too. And I’m enjoying some pearls like the Ikko OH1, or the YinYoo Topaz. All of this to say I’m conscious about how a product can be worth its price. The super pricy Mason V3 are absolutely not worth their more-than-2500$ price tag, even though they are really capable and desirable for many reasons. The Ufo-112 are not cheap, they actually cost between 350 and 400$, but I’m totally sure they are worth the money they’re asking. I opened and tried the 112 the same day as the T800, with a friend. She was so impressed by the T800 while I was by the 112, for different reasons. We’ve tried different stacks, especially a Fiio M7 > iFi xDSD via USB and Bluetooth and with/without the bass booster. The T800 are detail monsters and they have this great vocal presence which elevates over the instruments (which remain perfectly hearable and separated). But the Ufo have an unprecedented clarity for my ears. They are so clean and clear, without being too bright or harsh, that I struggle to describe the feel.
Bass is a bit colored, so while it reaches a deep sub, it’s also enhanced on its mid side. However, this doesn’t fall on the midrange at all, giving a sense of a dark – yet unobtrusive – background. The driver dedicated to that area is a dynamic one, so – as expected – the bass it’s pretty dense, but quick at the same time. It’s got that punch, though it’s very controlled and pleasant to listen to.
Mids are clear and crisp, with an amazing instrument separation – same impression on treble – and just a slight U, which is probably one of the flatter that I’ve heard. I cannot say this is a flat signature, but it’s so balanced and well-tuned that I truly believe you can use this set for monitoring and mastering, too. Voices on the midrange are full and embracing, and they never fall under the instruments. It’s not the best set for catching micro-details, but I didn’t feel the need of hearing more of them. For music listening, they are nearly perfect. For music production, this could be a discriminant.
Treble is a bit elevated, and it has sometimes a touch of brightness – which I like until it becomes sibilance. Here there are sometimes some sparkles of sibilance, but nothing too bad. I listen to Italian music a lot, and it has many “s”. Vocals are incredibly airy, this is truly a set which shines on both voice reproduction and instrumentals. Drums are really enjoyable, too, due to a tuning which can be described as natural and balanced. The Ufo-112 are never fatiguing, neither for their fit nor for their signature. They are very light, too, so they kind of disappear when you wear them.
Soundstage is wider and deeper than average. These aren’t the widest monitors I’ve ever used (those are the Mason V3, or the ADVANCED M4 to remain on a budget) nor the deepest (those are the RevoNext QT3), but they are better than most of my whole collection. And imaging is truly impressive, very precise and reliable. In general, I would describe this sound as “buttery” and smooth, with a noteworthy extension both in the sub-bass and the top highs. I like the lack of background noise. The transient response is so good that I believe I’m listening to the best set I’ve ever tried. The harmonics are all there – I’ve underlined the lack of some treble ones on the UM Mason V3 review – and they are full bodied, better than any other IEM I have and on par with the AudioSense T800 (which have an inferior tuning, though, in my opinion).
BGVP DM6: these are pretty cheaper, but they are some good monitors. They have a much closer stage, and a much darker sound. Bass is more prominent on the DM6, and it’s a bit quicker, but less bodied. The 112 are more bodied and natural sounding, while the DM6 are more faced to details. The 112 are much airier and clearer. Overall, the 112 are a better set (but they effectively cost about twice).
AudioSense T800: if the DM6 were last years’ most hyped IEMs, the T800 may be this years’ ones. They are amazing, but I believe the 112 are a better product for many reasons. The T800 can reproduce every micro detail and they are unbeaten in my collection. But they are very bright and fatiguing for music listening, while they are perfect for monitoring and recording/mastering. The comfort is much superior on the 112 (T800 are like customs, like the DM6, but they house more drivers so they are bigger; for my ears they are great, but after some time they are fatiguing). I believe the Ufo-112 are an easier choice for the ones searching for a good music listening tool, while the T800 are better if you need a super precise monitor. More info about them in my review here.
UfoEar is a pretty new brand, which is introducing some new models right in this period in various audio fairs around the East. Actually, they sell the 112 and the 111 on their AliExpress store, while some more products can be found on other non-West-proof stores. If you tell me, these are one of the better products I’ve ever tried (not only one of the better IEMs). They have a nice and original presentation, some good accessories, a great cable, good materials and a precise and solid build quality, high level drivers and a mature tuning. This sound is worth every penny, even if it’s not cheap. Western brands would sell something like this for much, much more money. I have never been so happy to find a new brand, thanks to a brilliant product like this. Absolutely recommended. I’ll update the review when I’ll try them with an Ares Audio’s upgrade cable: stay tuned!
Accessories (cable, tips; and the case is great)
Design and weight
A bit sibilant sometimes
The holder for the ear tips is not convenient to carry