Buy

 

Specs:

• Impedance: 50Ω
• Driver size: 10mm
• Frequency response: 20Hz~20 kHz
• Sensitivity: 96 dB +/- 3dB (1mW @ 1kHz)
• Cable length: 130cm
• Cable connections: MMCX • Weight (incl. cable): 29g

Video Review

Packaging

The Pinnacle P1 probably has the nicest packaging of any portable device I’ve ever experienced. Seriously, MEE Audio doesn’t seem to have made any skimpy cost cuts on this one. I get the sense that they’re genuinely proud of their product, and want your entire experience with the product to be top-notch premium.

Once you remove the outer sleeve, you’re left with an all-black box. From now on I’m going to call this the “Narnia box” due to the way it opens up, not to mention the surprise waiting inside. The Narnia box opens in a unique way, and the 2 “doors” snap towards each other via magnets. Once you open it up, you’re met with the stunning Pinnacle P1 IEMs and the very well-constructed and premium-looking leather case, both of which are protected by a foam layer. The case also features a metal plate with “PINNACLE” laser-engraved into it, as well as the serial number.

 

What’s in the box?

  • Pinnacle P1
  • Premium leather case
  • 2x detachable cables
  • Black silicon case
  • 6x silicon eartips
  • 3 x Comply eartips
  • 1/4 inch adapter
  • Shirt clip
  • Multi-language user manual

 

Accessories

MEE Audio packs in a pretty serious collection of accessories with their upper tier IEMs, and the Pinnacle P1 is no different. Quite notable is the the fact that they include 2 detachable cables. The first is an all-black, braided cable which features a microphone. But the star of the show is the dark translucent, silver-plated cable. Neither cables look or feel cheap, but the silver-plated cable is quite something to behold. I’ve seen considerably more expensive IEMs that featured exponentially less eye-catching cables. MEE Audio was also kind enough to include 9 pairs of ear tips. Yup, you read that right; 9 PAIRS!

6 of those pairs are various types and sizes of silicon tips, and the final 3 pairs are 3 different sizes of genuine Comply tips.

Adding even more value to the package is a very well-built and premium0looking leather case. I suppose you could consider it a bit bulky, but really not overly so. It just feels so incredibly satisfying to put your brand new IEMs in such a nice case. The engraved plate that features the serial number is especially cool.

 

 

Design:

The Pinnacle P1 is a seriously good-looking set of IEMs. The housings are made of some zinc- alloy, and feature a hand polished brushed finish, whilst the nozzles are made of stainless steel. The colour of the body almost seems like some kind of gun-metal, which looks fantastic. It’s not as in your face as silver-coloured metal, nor as understated as black painted or anodized metal.

The colour of the silver-plated cable also matches the colour of the IEM body fairly closely. There are no left and right markings on the body, instead these can be found on the black cable connector that attaches to the IEMS. The body does feature MEE Audio’s embossed logo, though.

Admittedly, the housings and cable to feel rather weighty in the hand, but once in your ears they actually seem considerably lighter.

 

Sound

Let me first mention the tips. Tips can make a big difference to a person’s experience with IEMs. Of course, comfort is one side of the coin, whilst the other is how they can alter the sound signature. I’ve never been a fan of Comply tips as they’ve always just made the sound too dark and congested for my liking, and it was no different with the Comply tips
included with the Pinnacle P1.Eventually I settled on the larger sizeof the double-flange silicon tips. Initially it didn’t really feel all that comfortable to me, but as I used them more over time I’ve gotten to a point where I can wear them for several hours at a time with no discomfort. Isolation is pretty darn good too, and I never found myself in a situation where I wished that they offered more isolation, even whilst I was in an airport transit lounger or on a plane. I did try some Sony Hybrid tips, and they were a bit more comfortable, but I didn’t like how they changed the sound. The major difference I found was that whilst the Sony Hybrid tips were that little bit more comfortable, they didn’t make me WANT to listen to my music for as long as the stock double-flange tips did. I really had to physically force myself to pull the IEMs out and go to bed.

 

 

There’s no getting around it, the Pinnacle P1 is an incredibly good sounding pair of IEMs. However, it won’t be suited to most people’s taste. For one thing, they are incredibly balanced, which means that bass-heads will find the sound exceptionally underwhelming. However, if you use some aftermarket tips such as the Sony Hybrid tips, bass response does increase rather notably at the expense of high frequency extension and overall transparency and detail, as mentioned above.

On the other hand, if you have become accustomed to a balanced, neutral, and highly detailed sound, you will absolutely love these. The upper treble range can at times become a little hot, but this is something I’m happy to live with in exchange for the sheer detail that is on offer. Honestly, how can a $200 set of IEMs be this damn good?

The Pinnacle P1 just has this incredible ability to bring to life the finest and faintest of details. Like when listening to Amber Rubarth’s Sessions From the 17th Ward album; every now and again you can hear ambient noises such as birds chirping, or the sound of car horns and emergency vehicle sirens in traffic. Likewise, the more prominent sound of falling rain in the background of Melissa Menago’s Little Crimes album just adds such a fantastic realism to the music. Sound stage is also quite good for IEMs, and I don’t get that “music in my head” feeling.

But perhaps the most rewarding experience (but not by a huge margin) is the way the Pinnacle P1 presents string instruments. It doesn’t matter whether it’s an electric or acoustic guitar, or a violin…the presentation is unlike anything I’ve heard before. It is just so well defined and captivating. Electric guitars have this incredible bite to them, whilst acoustic string instruments have a genuine sense of realism. Vocals also sound very realistic in terms of both texture and stage placement. As previously mentioned, the Pinnacle P1 is definitely not intended for anyone who enjoys a ton of bass. However, what it offers instead is a natural, textured, and well controlled bass response.

One concern that I had was whether my DX80 would have enough power to drive the 50-ohm IEMs. Thankfully it had plenty of power for them even on low gain.

Will it improve my audio experience?

As always, this depends on what you already have. If you already own some super-expensive IEMs, then the Pinnacle P1 probably won’t improve your experience. However, the Pinnacle P1 does punch well and truly above its price class, so you might get an improvement yet. For example, I compared them to Westone’s UmPro50, which cost almost 3 times as much, yet I found the Westone’s darker, and less transparent and detailed in comparison.

 

However, if you’re in the market for your first set, or looking to upgrade from something like the M6 Pro, or even Shure’s SE215 or 315, or if you already own some nice headphones and you’re looking for a more portable solution, I strongly recommend that you check out the Pinnacle P1. The value and performance is absolutely stellar, and I simply cannot rave about them enough.

Value

I’m going to be exceptionally frank on this matter; the Pinnacle P1 is probably the most value-packed product I have ever purchased. Moreover, relative to the price, the performance is off the chart. As previously mentioned, my first MEE Audio product was the M6 Pro. Even after reading and watching dozens of reviews, I was still genuinely blown away by how much value they managed to pack into a $50 product. Right then and there I was hooked on MEE Audio. Whilst their other products don’t really interest me, when the

Pinnacle P1 came around I simply couldn’t help but to be intrigued. I was intrigued to know, comparing to the M6 Pro, how much better of a product could I possibly get for 4 times the price? When I finally managed to get my hands on the Pinnacle P1, I can honestly say that the same feeling of awe and satisfaction that I got with the M6 Pro was once again delivered by the Pinnacle P1.

Every single aspect of the product; the packaging, the build quality, the build materials, the cable quality, the premium case, and of course the sound…everything was improved and refined. In fact, the entire experience led me to question just what the heck all the other manufacturers are doing. By that I mean, I’m fairly confident that MEE Audio isn’t selling the Pinnacle P1 at a loss…so if we consider all the other products that cost considerably more (yet sound equally as good, or worse), what are we paying for? How can those manufacturers justify their pricing schemes? Sure, there may very well be products that perform just that little bit better, that reach just that last fraction of refinement, but cost several times more. Are they really worth it?

 

 

What MEE Audio has demonstrated with the Pinnacle P1 is that when a company genuinely cares about their product and have the drive to spend an enormous amount of time on R&D, the result will be a nothing short of spectacular. Far too often do I see manufacturers release products on such a quick cycle simply to keep the cash flow going, rather than to properly test their products over and over again until they have created something that they can be genuinely proud of. They seem so focused on cramming more and more drivers into each ear piece, that it seems they’ve forgotten what really matters: real world performance. This isn’t limited to IEMs or headphones, and the basic concept applies to pretty much all other manufacturers too.

The Pinnacle P1 is the sum of all that time and effort spent on refining a particular type of technology, whilst keeping it as simple as possible for the desired performance.

Pros&Cons:

Pros 

  • Amazing value
  • Incredible sound at this price point Looks and feels premium
  • Great build quality
  • Fantastic, removable cable

Cons 

  • Can sound a touch bright if you’re not accustomed to a flatter frequency response

Rating

As far as the rating is concerned for headphones/IEMs, I’ve devised a 2-part system, the first of which is a 90-point rating of the product as a whole. This is an attempt to take every aspect of the product into account.
The second is a 65-point rating which focuses solely on the product as a portable HiFi accessory, disregarding all the (essentially) unnecessary bells and whistles such as packaging, accessories, and wireless connectivity, for example.

Packaging 

Look and feel: 5 / 5

Total: 5 / 5 

Included Accessories 

Multiple ear tips: YES Protective case: YES Multiple cables: YES Total: 3 / 3 

Build 

Metal body: YES
Comfortable: YES
Premium look and feel: YES Excellent quality control: YES Multiple colour options: – Seems durable: YES Interchangeable filter system: – Low microphonics: 4 / 5 Total: 9 / 12 

Sound 

Neutral: YES
Balanced signature: YES Soundstage: 9 / 10
Detail retrieval: 9.5 / 10 Instrument separation: 9.5 / 10 Isolation: 9 / 10
Total: 39 / 42 

Portability 

Small size: 10 / 10
Relatively low power required: – Total: 10 / 11 

Connectivity 

Bluetooth: –
Apt-X: –
Balanced: –
Removable cables: YES Total: 1 / 4 

Value 

Competitive price-point: YES Relative value: 10 / 10 Total: 11 / 11 

Manufacturer 

Has good reputation: YES Sells replacement parts: YES Total: 2 / 2 

Overall Rating: 8.9 / 10 

Portable Hi-Fi Rating 

Sound 

Neutral: YES
Balanced signature: YES Soundstage: 9 / 10
Detail retrieval: 9.5 / 10 Instrument separation: 9.5 / 10 Isolation: 9 / 10
Total: 39 / 42 

Portability 

Small size: 10 / 10
Relatively low power required: – Total: 10 / 11 

Connectivity 

Balanced: –

Total: 0 / 1 

Value 

Competitive price-point: YES Relative value: 10 / 10 Total: 11 / 11 

Overall Rating: 9.2 / 10 

– See more at: https://www.samma3a.com/en/reviews/mee-audio/pinnacle-p1-high-fidelity-in-ear-headphones-286.html#sthash.x72MGmam.dpuf

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