The Knowledge Zenith AS10, also known as KZ AS10, is an in-ear monitor that has five balanced armature drivers per side. In this article, we will be providing reviews of the KZ AS10, highlighting its audio quality, design, price and how it fares against the competition.

 

KZ AS10 Packaging and Accessories

The KZ AS10 is delivered in a black, rectangular packaging box with a printed KZ logo on the front panel. At first glance, the packaging is pretty cool for its price and there are stickers on the bottom panel to indicate the color options, the mic and the contact information of the manufacturer.

The box of the KZ AS10 flips open to the left, revealing a metal plaque and ear pieces. Inside the package are two transparent plastic bags that contain the warranty card, QC pass chit, user manual, 3 sets of KZ Starline eartips in Small, Medium and Large, and a removable cable. The KZ AS10 doesn’t have a carry case or bag but if you already have an existing pouch for devices, sharing space would be easy because this item is pretty small.

KZ AS10 Build Quality & Design

The KZ AS10 are ideal for mixed usage that has a decent look with the red highlights featuring PCB or printed circuit board. The earpieces of the KZ AS10 have a black, plastic housing with transparent face plates. The housing is on the larger side, the one with the deep nozzle tube. With the transparent faceplates, the KZ AS10 circuit boards are visible. The “L” and “R” sign  is identified on the faceplate located above the cable connection.

The individual earpiece has a small circular vent at the top, near the inner face of the housing. The KZ AS10 is known in the audio community as a product with an all-BA design, so the drivers flex is not really a concern. With regards to configuration, the KZ AS10 needs to offer more isolation since it has no air ventilation necessary for dynamic drivers.

The KZ AS10 has copper colored braided 2-pin cables with an L-shaped 3.5mm jack. Some users do not find a cable to be appealing because it is tangle-prone. With the KZ AS10, the cable is not as tangle-prone but it can still be problematic and annoying at times. In a nutshell, the KZ AS10 can be considered as a stable headphone mainly because of its ear hook-like design. However, it’s not made of a plastic hook or real rubber, but of flexible cable.

 

KZ AS10 Comfort, Fit, Isolation

From a comfort perspective, the KZ AS10 can be considered as tolerable, with its wide housings and deep insertion depth. In terms of noise isolation, the KZ AS10 is decent in comparison to dynamic driver or hybrid competition. The KZ AS10 can also accommodate a wide variety of silicone eartips and the deep insertion depth provides a warm and good seal.

KZ AS10 Sound Production and Music Quality

The KZ AS10 provides a dynamic, warm and mildly V-shaped tuning. This device emphasizes mid-range bass rather than low bass. The sound quality is not that pure; in fact, the mid bass hump tends to bleed in the lower mid frequencies , with a thickening depth that causes some sound distortion (e.g electric rhythm guitars come off as boomy). The lack of sub-bass is also particularly noticeable in music with electro instruments. Bass extension is good but not really something you would call fantastic.

The lower mid frequencies are warm and slightly recessed while the upper mid-range could use more precise sound presence. The treble is smooth but has a plastic sounding timbre that the competition can easily mark as a weakness of the KZ AS10. The resolution is adequate for its price level but for music pros or sound purists, the KZ AS10 may lack some luster. The instrument separation and imaging of the KZ AS10 is impressive and the soundstage production is larger than average in comparison to more expensive and dominant IEMs in the industry.

Like the KZ ZS10, the KZ AS10 does not really offer a high level of passive isolation, which can be a dealbreaker for a particular segment of consumers. In terms of noise isolation, the KZ AS10 gives a poor performance compared to similar products in production. This may be attributed to the small vent inside to equalize pressure. Take our word for it, it would be best not to use the KZ AS10 in a high noise place. It has a clear audio but has some sterile points and may lack melody and warmth.

KZ AS10: Budget Friendly Price

Knowledge Zenith is known to sell gadgets with dynamic drivers, whether it’s used for hybrid configurations or for pure dynamic IEMs. The KZ AS10 is actually the first to stray from traditional dynamic drivers to offer five balanced armatures per ear piece. Plus, this is also the first time that KZ produced a product with proper tuning.

If you are looking for a product that can give you a decently warm and precise experience and lets you enjoy listening to your playlist, favorite TV show, YouTube videos or computer games at a price that’s easy on the budget, the KZ AS10 is a good option. The KZ AS10 may not be what others would call a complete package, but if you can see this in a store display or on sale on Amazon or in Alibaba Group, this is definitely worth a second look, especially since it’s affordable compared to other hybrid  music devices in the market. The KZ AS10 has a secure place in the list for budget friendly, universal IEM. You can check the official website of KZ AS10 for more updates and product information.