The Campfire Andromeda and Solaris, through their various iterations, have been carrying the brand along through tumultuous times, when the IEM market became ridiculously saturated, and “great” stopped being good enough. After all, it’s hard to beat two proven winners. Perhaps for this reason, Campfire has introduced a separate and more accessible line-up of universal IEMs (which fall in the price range of the original Andromeda) that can stand apart from its two heavy hitters. Can the Supermoon build a new reputation as one of Campfire’s greats, or is it destined to fade away into the crowd?
What’s in the Box?
- Campfire Audio Supermoon IEMs
- 3 silver-plated detachable MMCX cables (Deluxe Edition)
- Leather folding case
- 3 sizes silicone and foam tips
- Cleaning tool
- Campfire Pin
Look and Feel
I remember the original Solaris being way too bulky and grating against the ear. The lack of comfort was the number one complaint. And now, I’m having trouble with the Supermoon, which just feels too big for my ears. The shell presses too tightly against my concha (that’s what she said). I rarely run into problems with fit, so I doubt I’ll be the only one with this problem. But if you’re a female or your ears are on the smaller side, I would move on.
In terms of looks, I appreciate the Supermoon’s uniqueness. The design features metallic faceplates reminiscent of Campfire classics, such as the Atlas, and bulbous resin shells for a modern, CIEM touch. More notable, the bright orange connectors add a vibrant and playful pop to an otherwise dark and industrial aesthetic.
The Supermoon employs a 14mm planar magnetic driver, and despite its low impedance at 15 Ohms, it did take a little bit of extra driving power. So, ideally, you would have a DAC/amp or powerful DAP to drive these IEMS. For this review, I paired the Supermoon with my small, but surprisingly robust Astell & Kern SR35.
The renowned Campfire “bigness” is ever apparent in the Supermoon. The vast sense of width is especially compelling, lending an almost stadium-like feel to live performances. The imaging is also exceptionally colorful, revealing separations in depth and height between instruments to the most minuscule degree. Still, the stage doesn’t seemed confined to a sonic bubble. Rather there is a “desert-scape”quality that seems to extend distant elements to incredibly far points across the stereo field. It’s not the tallest imaging I’ve experienced, but whatever the stage lacks in height, it makes up for with its overall impression of expansiveness.
You’ll hear a firm and determined bass delivery that’s got plenty of kick. Although the bass has depth (visceral in the sub-bass frequencies), it doesn’t feel particularly dark or heavy. Rather, there’s a limberness and agility to the bass, which makes modern tracks feel more energetic, while lending a lightness and freedom of movement to string instruments. The bass also hits a nice balance between detail/grip and smoothness, always feeling natural, but never sterile or reserved.
There’s such an energetic compactness to the sound; everything feels so tight, clean and solidly executed. It’s all very Campfirey in its presentation. The upper mids are slightly favored here, bringing vocals and more trebly snares forward. So, it’s an energetic, up close and snappy profile in this range. You won’t get too much juice from the low mids; they merely provide some steady legs rather than extreme lushness or meatiness. And while there’s not too much color to the tone, there is still a mildly polished feel to the delivery (that feels very planar), which is like a cherry on top of an already deliciously complex sound signature.
Interestingly, my attention was rarely drawn to the highs until having to critically listen to this frequency range. This is probably because the high frequencies are a supporting character rather a lead in the mix. Although I never felt anything missing in this frequency range, there was also never any persistent sparkle, crispness. At the same time I never felt any roll-off. So, the treble is definitely there, its presence has just been slightly subdued. Certainly, this isn’t the charismatic high-end of the Andromeda. Rather it complements and helps highlight the mids and low-end. It should also be noted that transparency is top notch in this in range, revealing every crackle and breath while also maintaining that refined flavor. So, nothing to dislike here.
Campfire has certainly introduced something different to their line-up. While certain elements of Campfire’s famous sound signature are there, like energy and tightness in delivery, other things (like ostentatiously crispy highs) have been replaced with new ideas. There’s little to dislike about the Supermoon with its agile bass, polished tone and tasteful balance overall. Is it going to be as memorable as the Andromeda? Unlikely. But is it a marked achievement in performance within this crowded sea of good IEMs? For sure. Lastly, if you tend to have problems with IEM fit, a test run might be wise.
You can buy the Campfire Audio Supermoon at Audio 46.