Sunrise-Hifi Charm3 and SW-Dragon 2 Earbud Review

First of all I would like to thank Kurt from Sunrise, for reaching out to me and sending me the Charm3 and SW-Dragon 2 for review.
Earbuds to me, generally speaking are relatively new to me. I used to wear earbuds over 6 years ago, when I upgraded from the stock Apple earbuds to a set of Sony earbuds. It was not long after, that I decided to go for in-earphones over earbuds, simply due to the isolation they provided.
I was thus intrigued when I received the two earbuds from Sunrise, to see how they performed based on previous experience and to compare them to in-earphones.

Sunrise-Hifi Earbuds

I shall list both earphones with purchase links and my written review of each:

Charm3

Sunrise-Hifi - Charm3 earbuds

Around $60 / £38 – Available from:
Sunrise-hifi
eBay link 1
eBay link 2

Pros: Looks and Design, Build quality, Flat-esk response, accessories
Cons: Bass, Isolation, Impedance at 30 Ohms, Straight 3.5mm jack, No cable management

Packaging & Accessories: 10/10
Build Quality: 8/10
Design & Look: 10/10
Microphonics (higher ratings means lower cable noise): 8/10
Isolation: 3/10
Comfort: 4/10
Audio Quality: 7/10
Value: 7/10
My final Rating: 8/10

Packaging, accessories, box content, overall first impressions (look wise)

Packaging:
The packaging it comes in is relatively discrete. It comes in a relatively small plastic box that contains the earphones and its accessories.

Sunrise-Hifi - Charm3 Box Sunrise-Hifi - Charm3 Box

Accessories:
The Charm3 comes with a set of black foam tips, 2 sets of pink and baby blue foam tips, O-ring type foam tips and 2 sets of plastic O-rings in case you lose any of the rings that are already on the earbuds.
It also comes with a hard case and a shirt clip.

Sunrise-Hifi - Charm3 accessories

 

Sunrise-Hifi - Charm3 filter

I really like the case it comes with as it is good for carrying around the little foam tips and keeping your earbuds secure from any drops. The case is also quite hard, meaning it can take quite a beating before damaging your earbuds inside.

Sunrise-Hifi SW-Dragon 2 - Carrying case

 

Sunrise-Hifi - Charm3 carrying case Sunrise-Hifi - Charm3 carrying case

Overall first impressions:
My first impressions were positive as I quite like the fresh look of the Charm3’s. They look very trendy and the overall package is quite nice!

Sunrise-Hifi - Charm3 package content

Build Quality

The build quality is very good, especially by the earbud itself. I especially like the fact that the wire is a flat wire, coloured blue on one side and white on the other. Overall the build quality is excellent, however two things I should mention are:
-The lack of a right angled jack, meaning that the life of the earbud could be reduced due to the wire losing connectivity after a some wear and tear – it is terminated by a straight 3.5mm gold plated jack
-The lack of a cable management piece which would allow you to carry these easily without the need to worry about them getting tangled as much

Sunrise-Hifi - Charm3 earbuds Sunrise-Hifi - Charm3 jack

With that said apart from the two above points, the build quality is exceptionally well thought out, especially for the price you would be paying for these.

Now the overall look, comfort and isolation

Look:
The look as mentioned before is quite fresh. I really love the looks of the Charm3 – vibrant, trendy, modern-looking very well built. I can’t really fault the looks in anyway, as I really like it!

Sunrise-Hifi - Charm3 earbuds

Isolation:
Isolation being a key problem with earbuds, there is no real shock that the isolation of the Charm3 is no different. I got barely any isolation with the earbuds and thus wasn’t too happy with the isolation when I was out the house with the earbuds.

Sunrise-Hifi - Charm3 design

Finally the comfort:
Now for the comfort, I should state that this is purely subjective in this respect. Normally I rate comfort based on a few factors, but in this case, as they are earbuds, I judge them on “do they stay in my ears or not”.
Unfortunately, even with a medium sized ear canal, I didn’t find them very comfortable, with or without the foam tips. They had trouble staying in my ears, even when I wasn’t moving. When I started walking around with them, it became a mission to keep them in at all times.
This is purely subjective, however I should mention this as I feel women or men with smaller ear canals will have even greater problems keeping these earphones in.

Sunrise-Hifi - Charm3 design

Sound Quality

The sound quality of the Charm3, reminded me of a flat-esk response. I found the mids and highs to be the greatest asset of the earbuds, but with that said when compared with in-ears, I found them to really lack any type of extension in both the highs and lows. I also had to crank up the volume using an amp to get any sort of life out of the earbuds due to its 30 Ohms impedance.

Sunrise-Hifi - Charm3 comfort
Lows:
The lows are decent however they don’t really extend that well to the sub-bass region. I feel that the bass is cut off so to speak. With that said as they are earbuds, I never expected them to be as bass-capable as in-ears. This is simply because in-ears go deeper within your ear canal and thus sound “fuller”.

Mids/highs: 
The mids and highs are quite nice. I like the flat-esk mids that the Charm3 produces. However with that said, the highs are a little too soft and thus a little rolled off. They don’t quite have the same amount of detail as in-ear within its price range do. It would have been nice to get a more accurate sound and something with a little more sparkle.

Soundstage:
The soundstage is really good, due to the earbuds being open, you get a great sense of space and room within your music. It is in some aspects a natural soundstage, rather than one that’s “artificially” created due to the design of the earbuds.

Sound Quality Ratings
Lows: 5/10
Mids: 7/10
Highs: 6/10
Soundstage: 8/10

Conclusions and final thoughts

Sunrise-Hifi - Charm3 earbuds

Overall the Charm3 are a great set of earbuds, especially for their price as I quite like the overall package that’s provided by Sunrise. In definitely do recommend the Charm3’s for those looking for earbuds specifically. With that in mind for the same price I would opt for in-ears that come in with better sound quality, that would be my personal choice.
However I know there are people that really don’t like in-ears and thus for that portion of the population, I can recommend the Charm3’s for them as they are relatively cheap, well built and have a decent sound quality for their price.

 

SW-Dragon 2

Sunrise-Hifi SW-Dragon 2 - Earbuds

$115 / £75
Sunrise-hifi
eBay link 1
eBay link 2

Pros: Build quality, Flat-esk response, accessories
Cons: Bass, Isolation, Impedance at 120 Ohms, Straight 3.5mm jack, No cable management

Packaging & Accessories: 9/10
Build Quality: 6/10
Design & Look: 7/10
Microphonics (higher ratings means lower cable noise): 8/10
Isolation: 3/10
Comfort: 4/10
Audio Quality: 7/10
Value: 4/10
My final Rating: 6/10

Packaging, accessories, box content, overall first impressions (look wise)

Packaging:
The packaging, like the Charm3’s, comes in is relatively discrete. It comes in a relatively small plastic box that contains the earphones and its accessories.

Sunrise-Hifi SW-Dragon 2 - Box Sunrise-Hifi SW-Dragon 2 - Box

Accessories:
The Dragon 2 comes with a set of black foam tips, a set of pink and baby blue foam tips and O-ring type foam tips. It also comes with a hard case and a shirt clip.

I really like the case it comes with as it is good for carrying around the little foam tips and keeping your earbuds secure from any drops. The case is also quite hard, meaning it can take quite a beating before damaging your earbuds inside.

Sunrise-Hifi SW-Dragon 2 - Carrying case

 

Sunrise-Hifi - Charm3 carrying case Sunrise-Hifi - Charm3 carrying case

 

Overall first impressions:
My first impressions were positive as I quite like the elegant design on the Dragon 2’s, however I’m a little baffled as to why there was less accessories provided with them, versus the cheaper Charm3’s.

Sunrise-Hifi SW-Dragon 2 - Package content

Build Quality

The build quality is decent, however I don’t really like the fickle wire provided with the Dragon 2’s. When put in contrast with the Charm3’s, it is immediately apparent that the flat wire that the Charm3’s have is superior in both looks and build quality. I don’t get why the more expensive Dragon 2’s have a more fickle and “normal” wire.
On top of that, the same two things stick out of the build quality as the CHarm3’s:
-The lack of a right angled jack, meaning that the life of the earbud could be reduced due to the wire losing connectivity after a some wear and tear – it is terminated by a straight 3.5mm gold plated jack
-The lack of a cable management piece which would allow you to carry these easily without the need to worry about them getting tangled as much

Sunrise-Hifi SW-Dragon 2 - Wire Sunrise-Hifi SW-Dragon 2 - Jack

With that said the build quality is still good, but in comparison to its cheaper brother, I feel the Dragon 2 was a little neglected.

Now the overall look, comfort and isolation

Look:
The look is oriental, with the flowery patterns on it. I think it looks quite nice, however might seem a little feminine for some people’s tastes. With that said, everything else on the earphone is black and quite discrete.

Sunrise-Hifi SW-Dragon 2 - Design

Isolation:
Isolation being a key problem with earbuds, there is no real shock that the isolation of the Dragon 2’s is no different. I got barely any isolation with the earbuds and thus wasn’t too happy with the isolation when I was out the house with the earbuds.

Finally the comfort:
Now for the comfort, I should state that this is purely subjective in this respect. Normally I rate comfort based on a few factors, but in this case, as they are earbuds, I judge them on “do they stay in my ears or not”.
Unfortunately, even with a medium sized ear canal, I didn’t find them very comfortable, with or without the foam tips. They had trouble staying in my ears, even when I wasn’t moving. When I started walking around with them, it became a mission to keep them in at all times.
This is purely subjective, however I should mention this as I feel women or men with smaller ear canals will have even greater problems keeping these earphones in.

Sunrise-Hifi SW-Dragon 2 - Design

 

 

Sound Quality

The sound quality of the Dragon 2 is a hit and miss. Unlike the Charm3’s falt-esk response the Dragon 2 seems to have a warmer signature with more definition in the high frequencies but less impact in the low frequencies. I was hoping that the Dragon 2 would be like the Charm 3’s, but also better due to their price. Unfortunately this wasn’t exactly the case and furthermore with a 120 Ohms impedance the Dragon 2’s really do need an amp. I’m not quite sure why Sunrise chose to have such high impedance on these earphones. It just makes it troublesome for portable setups and those looking to run the earphones solely on a source, without an amp.

Sunrise-Hifi SW-Dragon 2 - Driver
Lows:
The lows are not very well presented, they seem a little hidden and tucked away. This would thus suggest the mids would be more prominent than the Charm3’s, which they are by a small amount, however that difference doesn’t feel prominent enough. Thus leaving the lows unloved and lacking any real definition or presence.

Mids/highs: 
The mids and highs are good. I quite like the Dragon 2’s highs as they extend quite well and give a nice sparkle. With that said, due to a warmer signature, the mids sound a little off and thus cause the Dragon 2’s to sound a little different. When I was comparing them to in-ears and the Charm3’s I felt that the Dragon 2’s were in some-ways over compensating. Thus leaving you with nice highs but a warm undefined mid range frequency.

Soundstage:
The soundstage is really good, due to the earbuds being open, you get a great sense of space and room within your music. It is in some aspects a natural soundstage, rather than one that’s “artificially” created due to the design of the earbuds.

Sound Quality Ratings
Lows: 4/10
Mids: 6/10
Highs: 8/10
Soundstage: 8/10

Conclusions and final thoughts

Sunrise-Hifi SW-Dragon 2 - Design

Overall I wasn’t as impressed with the Dragon 2’s as I was with the Charm3’s – This applied to both design, price and sound. I would have preferred if the Dragon 2’s were priced at the same price range as the Charm3’s providing customers with a choice of sound signature. The Dragon 2’s are thus earbuds I can’t see myself recommending, mainly due to their high price tag. For that amount of money one could buy excellent sounding in-ears and even earbuds from other companies.
It is a shame as the overall package provided is great, but the price to performance ratio for me just didn’t cut it.

Hope you enjoyed my reviews!
TotallydubbedHD

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