It’s been a long time since we chi-fi people found something new in the sub $30 zone.
Moondrop has already bagged our trust in the $80-$350 zone. So, it was logical that they soon dropped into a much cheaper zone.
Now, this wasn’t their only attempt in the sub $30 zone. The Quarks and Spaceship both had their fine attempts into this price range.
And that’s where we get curious. Why launch a whole new IEM in the same price range when they already had their warriors working there?
Well, our Moondrop chu review is here to unravel this very question. Along with that, we’ll try to understand whether or not is the Moondrop chu worth it.
Now, let’s play right into the details-
Moondrop Chu: What’s in it?
Let’s take a look at some of the primary Moondrop Chu technical specs first-
- Impedance: 18Ω.
- Sensitivity: 120dB/Vrms@1kHz.
- THD: ≤1%@1kHz.
- Frequency Response Range: 10Hz-35kHz.
- Effective Frequency Range: 20Hz-20kHz (IEC60318-4, -3dB).
We know how important audio features are for you. Take a quick look at them-
- 10mm Nano-crystal coating composite Titanium-Coated Diaphragm for better friction resistance
- N52 Neodymium Magnetic Circuit to get the ultimate Moondrop Chu frequency response
- Ultra-Thin Imported CCAW Coil for the best cone vibration
- Tuned In-Line With Moondrop VDSF Target Response
- High-quality Metallic Ear Cavities
- Includes Premium Spring Tips
We can now move on to the features in detail to help make up the decision.
Feature 1: Price
In the very first feature of the Moondrop IEM review, we’re going to discuss Moondrop chu price. The price surprised me just like it did when I reviewed the Salnotes Zero.
You can never overlook the fact of price while making a purchase. This is the most upgraded top-notch IEM coming at just around $19.99.
The duo delivers flawless performance with excellent clarity. It also has a wide frequency response, giving customers a true Hi-Res experience.
Who says a high-resolution experience has to be expensive? Moondrop Chu provides high-quality service at an affordable price.
Feature 2: Dynamic Driver Unit
Moondrop Chu has a compound cavity structure and a 10mm high-performance dynamic driver unit per side.
A high-power N52 Neodymium magnetic circuit is used in the driver. It also contains an imported CCAW voice coil that is ultra-thin.
As a result, you get a very effective operation with a lot of attention to detail.
Feature 3: VDSF Tuning
CHU uses a well-regulated acoustic connecting cavity to follow the Moondrop VDSF target response. The target response of the VDSF is a dynamic goal.
As a result, composite elements control the sound quality.
It offers a high-resolution audio output with an expansive soundstage and clear clarity across the frequency spectrum.
In addition to that, the Moondrop aces in playing ambient sounds, making it one of the best earphones for long listening sessions.
However, the Moondrop chu struggled in some of the layering aspects. This made it seriously frustrating for the gaming experience.
The note weights weren’t that prominent either compared to the other IEMs in this price range.
Feature 4: Design
Moondrop Chu is housed in a beautifully handmade metal casing. Melting and injection molding procedures are used to make this out of alloys.
We also fell in love with the design of the shell and how it felt in our hands.
The ultimate product is a stunning shell with a solid foundation. It also boasts an ergonomic form for a more comfortable fit.
One thing we couldn’t wrap our heads around was the horrendous cable used in the earphone.
And for an IEM like this, we were expecting a detachable cable, which was not the case with Moondrop Chu.
Another big concern was the shell paint of the IEM. From what we noticed, the shell paint seemed very much prone to chipping out.
Feature 5: Spring Tips
Moondrop Chu’s newest Spring Tips are silicone ear tips that are quite comfy. Through a unique diffusion structure, they are able to avoid unwanted resonance.
This considerably improves the sound quality. With the Moondrop CHU, Moondrop provides the deluxe Spring Tips as standard.
So, these are the additional features included in the Moondrop Chu earphones.
Moondrop Chu Vs Moondrop Quarks
Moondrop Quarks have been great so far without a doubt. But Moondrop Chu is yet to go long. So that people get to know about it in detail.
You know, both of them are cheap. But with the updated features, we would like to choose Moondrop Chu over Quarks.
So, what takes Moondrop Chu over Moondrop Quarks? Moondrop Chu comes in a way that looks better.
In addition, the VDSF tuning curve is more precise.
And the Moondrop Chu has a V-shaped sound whereas Moondrop Quarks don’t.
Remember, adding a sonic maximizer can help enhance the sound quality significantly.
Thus, Moondrop Chu wins over Moondrop Quarks. But is it actually the successor of Quarks or does it have a different purpose?
To be honest, Moondrop Chu are not to gain the market share of earphones. But it has a different objective that we would know in this article.
Moondrop Chu Vs Moondrop Spaceship
Moondrop Chu is the successor of Moondrop Spaceship. Moondrop Chu has a distinct design with a more traditional Chinese texture.
This is quite different from when we compared moondrop aria and starfield.
It has got an upgraded acoustic architecture. It uses Aria’s modular flexible system.
The magnetization circuit of the high-performance 10mm composite cavity with a high-frequency phased waveguide is based on an N52 Nd magnet.
It also contains an imported 0.035m ultra-thin CCAW sound coil for great energy conversion efficiency.
It performs admirably, having a wide dynamic range and a wealth of subtleties.
Moondrop Chu Vs KZ ZSN Pro
Moondrop Chu has a lower sub bass and midbass than that of the KZ ZSN pro.
However, the lower and upper midrange of Moondrop Chu is greater than KZ ZSN pro.
Moondrop Chu tried obtaining a few features from KZ ZSN pro as per a few users. But it has got an upgrade of the features that it tried obtaining.
And KZ ZSN pro earphones are a bit higher in price compared to Moondrop Chu. However, that’s not the fact that you may want to know.
Because KZ ZSN has been seen to be advertising false claims. They claim to have two operating drivers influencing the sound quality.
Whereas, one of them was hardly putting any effect on the sound quality. And this gives them backlash, helping their competitors to come over.
So, you may wonder, is KZ ZSN pro IEMs good or not!
Thus, Moondrop tries to utilize this as well. Thus, Moondrop Chu wins over KZ ZSN pro if you want to compare.
Moondrop Chu Vs Tanchjim Tanya
The sub-bass and midbass of Tanchjim Tanya are higher than that of Moondrop Chu.
However, the lower and upper midrange of Moondrop Chu is higher.
Tanchjim Tanya is the favorite of many users today. So, competing with it might be a bit challenging for Moondrop Chu.
If we take a look at the Moondrop Chu graph, it does well with its V-shaped sound to gain a competitive advantage over Tanchjim Tanya.
The Moondrop Chu, however, falls short in note weight when compared with Tanya. But in this case, the Tanchjim Tanya was leagues ahead of Moondrop chu.
And it also has better cable and accessories than the Moondrop IEM cable.
Moondrop Chu: As a Workout IEM?
You know, Moondrop Chu is only about $20. So, this can be easily replaceable. If you are a gym freak, this might be the one you are looking for!
When we are in the gym, IEM is our desire to boost our determination. However, wired headphones are often not recommended for use during a workout. The sweat and its moisture make it a problem. But if you can keep the wire clean, you’re good to go!
But Moondrop Chu comes at a reasonable price which makes it easier to replace. Thus, Moondrop Chu might be one of them for the gym hitters.
Is It Just Another Way to Boost Ear Tips Sales?
You replace your ear tips to put off the earwax and a few worn-out ear tips. Moondrop Chu ear tips are, however, a bit on the expensive side.
Thus, these are not sold regularly.
So, what Moondrop Chu tries to do is give away an earphone with ear tips. You basically buy the ear tips rather than buying IEM.
Are you familiar with a discriminatory pricing strategy? No? Let’s make it simple, shall we?
Have you wondered why popcorn in any movie theatre is so overpriced? That’s because their pricing is determined a bit differently than any other item.
Being the most profitable product in the theatre, the price of popcorn is determined based on the type of movie playing and the number of customers it attracts.
This might sound odd, but this strategy allows the theatre to be flexible with ticket pricing.
Affordable ticket prices can actually guarantee a maximum audience. Meaning that the customers are more likely hooked to buying popcorn.
Which ultimately increases the expenditure per customer.
Now, the actual dilemma is about Moondrop ear tips. This non-detachable IEM has ear tips that cost $13.
Looking at that, this might feel a bit exorbitant. Because you are literally paying for the ear tips. And you get the earphone for just an extra $7.
So, who wants to do that? Thus, Moondrop Chu might be a different project that aims for something else rather than getting the IEM to share mainly.
Thus, this might be a sneaky way to increase ear tip sales. However, the ear tips could be used for up to more than 2 years.
Other than this, how does Moondrop Chu try to control the market actually? Well, Moondrop Chu follows the pricing strategy.
According to the pricing strategy, people tend to go for the less expensive stuff. But a newcomer between these two attracts the consumer even more.
Here’s a customer reaction –
That is, coming with a lesser price than the highest but more than the lowest. And Moondrop Chu has utilized this pricing strategy.
Thus, people might tend to be more interested in these earphones.
Moondrop CHUnya: The Final Moondrop Chu Mod
Unlike the issues with planar IEMs, the Moondrop Chu can easily be fixed with some mods. In fact, the upgradability or the modding ability of moondrop chu is another reason to go for it. You see with the mods you can take the chu to a whole different level.
However, modding the Moondrop Chu is a hard task to accomplish. A Facebook user named Yannick Khong has a fresh take on it.
He came up with the idea while working on the Aria SE-X. He claims that this is capable of fixing the issues the first MAX version tried to fix.
He coined the name ‘CHUnya’ for his modified version of the Moondrop CHU. Because most of the modifications he made relied on the filters from the Tanchjim Tanya kit.
Furthermore, Moondrob CHUnya is capable of giving any Chifi enthusiast a taste of what they’re getting into.
Before getting right into Yannick’s methods, you first need to know about the modifications themselves.
What You’ll Need for the Modifications
Here is a short list of things you’ll need to make the easy modification-
|Things You’ll Need||Check from Amazon||Check from Aliexpress||Check from Linsoul|
|Moondrop CHU||Check Price||Check it out!||Check Availability|
|Tanchjim Tanya (for filters)||Check Price||Check it out!||Check Availability|
|Kbear 10 Eartips||Check Price||Check it out!||–|
|Mini Cable Clip||Check Price||Check it out!||–|
Apart from these, you’ll need a sim card removal pin. That’s pretty common nowadays. So, no need to buy it.
Now, with the essential ingredients out of the way, let’s get into the process itself.
Making the Modifications
The process itself is rather simple and easy. There are only three steps that you’ll have to follow-
- First, take both HEX and soft filters off from the Moondrop CHU.
- It’s time to use the Tanya filters. Simply place the filter on top of the nozzle to cover all of it.
- Finally, add the Kbear10 ear tips. Use the size that allows the best insertion for your ears.
That’s it. You’re done with the modifications. It’s time to now enjoy the improvements the modifications bring.
The Improvements from the Mods
Well, Let’s first state the obvious improvements. They are-
- Tanya Filter in place of Hex + Soft Moondrop Filters: You’ll first notice the clear improvement in the refined treble and the solved shout. That is because the Tanya filter does a better job of controlling the shout.
- Kbear10 Ear tips in place of the TRN Red-Gray: The Tanya filter dulls the pitch of the treble to refine it. As a result, the TRN Red-Gray is not enough for it anymore. The Kbear10 ear tips overcome this shortcoming rather easily.
Now, the other expected results are-
- The Moondrop CHUnya is easy on your ears, it does not cause much fatigue. That is because of the better ear tips.
- The sound stage is wider and larger as a result of the modifications.
- The weak link of CHU, depth, is still somewhat weak in the CHUnya but still has improved a lot.
- The treble extension is more refined now including some air and some more microdetails. The CHUnya doesn’t have the peaks or shouts from the original. Although it is still slightly one-dimensional.
- The mids are less crisp compared to before as a result of using the Tanya filters.
However, even though the results are nothing short of impressive, some problems still remain in the CHUnya.
The Unfixed Shortcomings
Although the mod fixed a lot of them, there are still some shortcomings that went unfixed. I’ve listed them out for you-
- The CHUnya, despite being more refined than before, still falls short of the Aria Twins or SSR.
- The Tanya filter limits the microdetails and clarity the pair can pick up. That causes the CHUnya to fall short of SSR07.
- The stock CHU cable is subpar at best. You may change that at your discretion.
There’s a reason why I would recommend this ‘hyper budget allrounder’. It’s because the modded IEM gives you a taste of what’s to come further down the road. It is thus a gateway to IEMs like Aria Twins or ER2se and the hobby in general.
So, Is Moondrop Chu Worth the Price?
Now, let’s have a quick look at the table comparing all these best-pick IEMs for around $20.
|Moondrop Chu||V-shaped||Check Current Price|
|Moondrop Quarks||DF Neutral||Check Current Price|
|Moondrop Spaceship||DF Neutral||Check Current Price|
|KZ ZSN Pro||V-Shaped||Check Current Price|
|Tanchjim Tanya||DF Neutral||Check Current Price|
According to the new users and the reviews, Moondrop Chu is absolutely worth it. Because it does not go any behind with the features.
It has got additional features having a good successor to the previous Moondrop earphones.
And you can also enhance the default bass by implementing a particular Moondrop chu mod.
Nevertheless, the price of this has still remained very reasonable. Thus, getting Moondrop Chu would absolutely be a win-win shot.
Yes, it’s not the best. But with a jawdropping price of $20, you can’t really expect more.
However, do not forget that there are more of them with a low budget. You may consider increasing the budget a bit and go for a hotshot!
Most IEMs come expensive. Thus, it might not be that easy to get a good one within $50.
Thus, it is always great to get a good product in something like budget-friendly.
Here’s a guided recommendation for your $30-$50 chi-fi experience-
|IEM||Ear tips||Cable or Other Accessories||What do we think?|
|Tripowin Lea||Spinfit Ear tips||KBEAR 4 Core Copper Cable||A complete setup however needs EQ.|
|Tanjchim Tanya||Kbear 07 Ear tips||Warm DF neutral in stock but with the tips can beat mighty IEMs within the range.|
|Tripowin Mele||A bit bassy but perfectly fits into the budget range.|
|Tin HiFi T2 Plus||Warm neutral tone but goes around $60.|
Hope this helps!
The Bottom Line
Now you know everything about the Moondrop Chu review! We believe you are well aware of making your decision about it now.
Remember one thing. Before you buy a pair of earphones or headset, you should always look at a review. This helps to get the best out of your purchase!