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  • Writer's picturedbstechtalk

Another Tier List!

Updated: Sep 27, 2022

One of the most common requests that I receive is, "Where is your Tier List?" So after 3 years of reviews on YouTube, here is my Tier List.

You all know me and shouldn't be surprised at how simple but out of the ordinary this Tier List is.

There are 3 tabs at the bottom; Headphones, IEM and Ranking Grade. In the Headphone and IEM tabs there are 3 sortable columns; Manufacture, Model and Grade. In the 3rd tab, Ranking Grade, there is an explanation of the Grade.

Explanation of the Ranking Grade: A "minus" is the lowest and a "plus" is the highest within that letter; if no "plus" or "minus" then it is smack in the middle of said letter. "A" equals "awful" which is the worst I have experienced. "B" equals "bad" which is barely tolerable. "C" equals "contender" which is gear that has a few flaws but is recommendable. "D" equals "delicious" which means this gear is highly recommended. "E" equals "excellent" which is the cream of the crop.

The overall grade is based on my review and is a mixture of the entire experience; build, comfort, sonics and everything else in between. To best understand differences in grades it is recommended you watch or read my review. More then likely you will be directed back to the original review/s when asking for comparison/s so why not watch it first.

Just because various products have the same grade may or may not mean they perform at the same level BUT is the overall grade for how it performs on it's own merit in my personal opinion.

Please keep in mind that this Tier List is my personal opinion and it more then likely will differ with other reviewers and your experiences.

Also, this is a living document and will be updated with each new review. Some grades may fluctuate without reason based on me revisiting the gear and changing my mind.

Please enjoy the Tier List and have fun comparing.

Twitter: @TalkDbs

The Honest Audiophile research/review process:

Recommended Gear:

Rosson Audio Design RAD-0:

MrSpeakers Ether C (non flow version)

Moondrop SSR:

Monoprice Monolith THX AAA 788:

Massdrop THX AAA 789:

Grace Design SDAC-B:

Geshelli Labs J2:

Music recommendations:

Tingvall Trio “Beat” - piano tonality

Sinne Eeg “We’ve Just Begun” - multiple layer soundstage

Molly Johnson “What a Little Moonlight Can Do” - female vocal tone

Leslie Odom Jr. “Under Pressure” - male vocal tone

Eric Clapton “Change the World” - soundstage, layering and placement

Yo Yo Ma “Ecstasy of Gold” - acoustic instrument timbre

Adam Baldych “Spem in Alium” - acoustic instrument timbre

Pain of Salvation “Stress” - percussion balance

Michael Buble “When I Fall in Love” - orchestral dynamics

Patricia Barber “Code Cool” - sibilance check

Christian Scott “New New Orleans” - shouty upper mids

Tool “Chocolate Chip Trip” - imaging

Hans Zimmer “Why So Serious” - sub bass extension

Marcus Miller “No Limit” - bass control

Dave Holland Quartet “Conference Of The Birds”- bass check

Ilhan Eshkeri “47 Ronin”- orchestra and bass dynamics

Hans Zimmer: “2049” - sub bass extension

Cher: “Believe” - sibilance

Stanley Clarke - “Passenger 57 main title” - percussion, bass, separation and placement

Slovak Radio Symphony Orchestra - “The Pine of the Appian Way” - soundstage, imaging and separation

Houston Person - “You are my Sunshine” - tone and timbre

If you like the content of this channel and want to see more like this in the future, please

consider donating. All funds donated to the channel will be used to purchase headphones and audio gear for the channel.

If you would like to contact the channel please send an email to:

Affiliate links:

Gestalt Audio: promo code: DBS

4,754 views3 comments


Oct 05, 2021

I trust Daves analysis because I made purchases not listening to him and all his critical points of analysis on that product matched what mine were in final analysis.


Hiep Le
Hiep Le
Sep 28, 2021

Tier list is interesting thing for referring and comparing. My belove Dt880 was rated as "Bad" made me feel sad a bit. But I understand that is personal taste, I used to sold HD600 because of 880 haha

Sep 28, 2021
Replying to

Gear synergy and music preference plays a big part as well.

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