Cable pair up.
I’m aware that some people don’t believe in cables and have a very strong opinion about it. It’s not my intent to start an argument here. Instead, I would like to share what I hear during my testing. What makes sense to me, a metal wire is a material with physical properties of resistivity, conductivity, and purity, all of which put together act as a filter between your source and earphones. Variations of these physical properties can affect the conductivity of analog signal, resulting in a sound change, from a subtle to a more noticeable level. If the talk about cables upsets you, you are welcome to skip this section.
Stock vs PS Silver+ – very similar sound with the only exception of upper mids/vocals being pulled slightly back with Silver+ cable while being more forward with stock cable. Similar soundstage expansion.
Stock vs Eletech Socrates – very similar to stock cable, though I do hear more texture and rumble in bass. Mids and treble were like with stock cable as well. Also, soundstage got a little wider with Socrates.
Stock vs LL Venom – I only hear two differences here, the mids with Venom got more forward, but at the same time the soundstage with Venom got narrower. Wasn’t my favorite pair up.
Stock vs EA Cleo II octa – this one has a very noticeable improvement, especially in soundstage width expansion and 3D imaging. The sound got a lot wider in comparison to stock cable. Also, overall sound is a bit smoother and more refined, more natural, even having a better coherency. Octa version of Cleo II is not cheap, and I don’t have regular 4wire (cheaper) version of it. But it was an impressive improvement.
The sound comparison was done using Mezzo LE with a stock cable, stock silicone eartips, and LPGT source; volume matched in every comparison. Mezzo LE had all switches in off position.
Mezzo LE vs FAudio Dark Sky – there are some similarities and differences in this comparison. The impact and the weight of the bass is where I find it to be close, thought Mezzo has slightly higher elevated sub-bass and furthermore, you can boost the bass higher with a switch. Mids are leaner in Dark Sky while have more body in Mezzo. Treble has a similar extension and sparkle, just with a bit more crunch in Dark Sky. You can boost treble in Mezzo, but boosting it sounds a bit harsher in comparison to Dark Sky treble, thus I prefer to keep Mezzo treble at default. Both have a similar soundstage expansion.
Mezzo LE vs UM Mest MKII – starting with the bass, Mest has more elevated sub-bass rumble while Mezzo LE has a noticeably higher mid-bass impact, making its bass to have a stronger punch. Lower mids of Mest are leaner which gives Mezzo fuller body in comparison, and mids/vocals in Mezzo are more forward while Mest mids are slightly pulled back. With treble, they are quite similar, having similar crisp treble extension, though Mest has a little more air. Soundstage is similar.
Mezzo LE vs CFA Solaris ’20 – The first thing I noticed was a wider and more holographic expansion of Mezzo soundstage in comparison to Solaris. Also, the weight of the bass impact is scaled down in Solaris, while more blooming/elevated in Mezzo. Their mids/vocals are quite similar in tonality and presentation, but since Solaris has a leaner bass, the perception of Mezzo vocals is a little warmer, though it’s just a perception since they are quite similar even in measurements. Treble is similar between these two, but due to a more elevated bass, Mezzo gives more body and warmth to the sound while Solaris sounds brighter and a bit thinner in comparison.
Mezzo LE (Sw1 & 3) vs 64 Audio Trio – When I was going through different switch setting, Sw1& 3 instantaneously reminded me of Trio, so I had to compare these. They both have V-shape signature (with Mezzo Sw1 & 3), but Mezzo bass is scaled up with deeper sub-bass rumble and more mid-bass impact. Mids have similarities as well, lower mids are identical, but going into upper mids Trio is more forward and higher in quantity. Treble between these two is almost the same, maybe with a bit more air in Trio, but overall treble is very similar. A lift in bass and slightly pulled back upper mids in Mezzo makes it sound a little smoother, while Trio is brighter and a bit more aggressive in upper frequencies. But overall, they do sound quite similar when you set Sw 1 & 3 on.
Tbh, I’ve never been a big fan of IEMs with multiple switches or those with Piezo driver tweeters. In my previous experience with such IEMs, I usually find switches to be more of a gimmick, introducing changes that ruin the original tuning or adding bloat and harshness. Also, in the past, with Piezo drivers I found the sound to be plasticy, not very natural. Mezzo LE changed my mind about both things. The default setting (all switches off) has Piezo driver tuning down to perfection. And even though I enjoyed bass sound with a default switch off, boosting it adds a new dimension to the low end response. The bottom line, it is up to the user if they want to flip the switch when experimenting with different tuning options. And with every change you are not just boosting a frequency band, but actually transforming and finetuning the sound signature of this IEM. I think that is what makes Mezzo LE unique and helps it stand out from the crowd.