phb EP016

7mm + 2 × ?5mm Dynamic Drivers


The EP016 are visually similar to YINJW P8, but those are clearly two very different earphones in every sense, and they are both not so impressive, especially considering their triple-driver setup and price.

With that being said, the EP016 are indeed an improvement when it comes to sound quality: the bass is more controlled and the mids and highs have a more proper timbre. And yet, the highs are just too recessed and leave no room for amazement and the overall sound seems to be compressed.


  • Overall decent sound quality for people who are sensitive to treble.
  • Excellent design and build quality.


  • The sound is relatively dark in tone and lacking any sparkle.
  • The upper-mids/lower-treble sounds a bit metallic.
  • Relatively quiet and harder to drive.
  • Not comfortable to wear as designed (cable straight down).

Package & Accessories


Hard paperboard

Ear Tips - Single-Flange:

S+M+L, grey (translucent), ?6mm bores

Ear Loops:

Black, generic

Shirt Clip:

Black, 360° cable holder, generic


Velour, grey, generic


Hook and loop fastener, generic

Build & Materials


Plastic (glossy) + metal, ?6.5mm nozzles (?5mm bores), no strain reliefs


Plastic (matte), triple-button*


Metal, stiff strain relief


Silicone-coated (smooth), 126cm, semi-soft, mildly bent


Metal, straight, short, stiff strain relief

  • The volume buttons work on Android devices. I don't have an iPhone for compatibility check.

Comfort & Fit

These earphones are weird. Unlike YINJW P8, the EP016 are not meant to be worn over-the-ear. Instead, the channel setup indicates that they are meant to be worn cable straight down, and while it's possible, it is very difficult to get a proper fit, as these housings are clearly made for over-the-ear use. I think that it was a silly design choice.

An interesting point to note is that there are silicone ear loops included with these earphones for over-the-ear usage. However, that would mean reversing the channels (left will be right and right will be left), and that's not something anyone would want to do. For that reason, they should have opted-in for a removable cable.

Lows / Bass

The bass is deep enough to enjoy some electronic music, and there's enough mid-bass to warm up vocals. Unlike YINJW P8, the bass isn't exaggerated and isn't muddy but also lacks much impact and swiftness.

Mids / Vocals

The mids are darkish and lack sparkle. Sounds are off-tone, that's especially noticeable on claps and electric guitars, and that's mainly caused by lack of upper-treble. The upper-mids seems overemphasized a bit, which makes them a bit harsh when not used to. Truthfully, they are tonally more pleasant than YINJW P8, but the sound is still quite compressed and non-immersive.

Highs / Treble

While the lower-treble is highly emphasized, the higher-treble, that's reponsible for crispness and the delicate detail, is almost missing, making the sound shouty and unbalanced. This can be significantly improved with an equalizer by boosting the whole upper-treble frequency range.

Frequency Response

Published on 2018-02-23 17:01:10 (GMT)