Current testing methodology is v1.2
25 August 2021
Price not available
10 x 10 x 5 cm
I’ve always been on the lookout for budget-friendly or reasonably-priced IEMs that shine above their competition, and the NiceHCK DB3 is one of them.
It has been years since its initial release so we’ll take a look at how it pairs up with today’s competition.
Impressive sound in a cool-looking well-designed unit.
The NiceHCK DB3 is a hybrid 3-driver unit that has a simple yet effective design, plus a balanced and organic tonality.
Its balanced sound signature makes it suitable for those who enjoy listening to vocal-focused or instrumental tracks, as the tuning of these IEMs highlights the mid frequencies.
The DB3 typically goes for around $20 and at this price point, it’s an entry-level set that deserves recognition.
- Driver: 1 Balanced armature + 10mm Coaxial Dual Dynamic, Hybrid 3 driver units
- Cable: 3.5mm L-plug Cable
- Frequency: 20Hz-22000Hz
- Impedance: 16Ω
- Sensitivity: 106dB
What’s in the Box?
- NiceHCK DB3 earphones
- 3 x pairs of silicone ear tips
- 1 x pair double flange ear tips
- 2-pin detachable cable
- Small carrying pouch
- Instruction Manual
Stuff I like
- Revealing mids
- Good clarity and detail retrieval
- Great tonal balance
Stuff I like less
- May seem flat-sounding at times
- Bass may be lacking
Comparable products to consider
The CCA CSN is another Hybrid IEM alternative with a balanced armature combined with a dual dynamic magnetic driver.
The DB3 comes well-packed in a box with a magnetic lid. The accessories, such as the double flange ear tips and the small carrying pouch, are a great addition.
These IEMs follow a similar design ideology to other products from NiceHCK. It’s relatively small and light, contributing to its excellent fit and comfort.
The NiceHCK DB3 has a polycarbonate shell, which is a hard plastic material with a zinc alloy faceplate. It adds a nice touch to the IEMs.
They feel great on the hand and seem robust.
The zinc alloy faceplate improves the rigidity of these IEMs and gives an overall classy aesthetic to the DB3.
The included accessories are also well-made and of good quality, plus the detachable cable is noticeably thicker than most cables with budget IEMs.
Fit and Comfort
In terms of comfort, the NiceHCK DB3 fits my ears well and I didn’t encounter any discomfort when wearing them with the included ear tips.
Since they come in a familiar shape and size for IEMs, the DB3 was comfortable enough for me, and I could get a snug fit without ever swapping out the ear tips with a different-sized pair. The pre-molded ear hooks on the cable were also comfortable to wear, even in extensive use cases.
The NiceHCK DB3 is also pretty light, which prevents possible strain that can be experienced after extended use.
Overall, the NiceHCK DB3 is a comfortable pair of IEMs that can fit most ear sizes.
When first testing the NiceHCK DB3, I immediately noticed how well it presents the vocals and mid frequencies. The bass frequencies also performed well in complementing the midrange.
Overall, these IEMs have a balanced and revealing mids presentation, which contributes to how it presents vocals and instruments in a mix.
The bass on the DB3 has a good amount of punchiness to it and has more of a warm sound rather than an overly boomy sound.
I feel like NiceHCK tuned the bass frequencies to complement the mids, which I think they could execute pretty well.
Bass-heads may find the DB3 lacking as these IEMs have a more controlled bass signature than an overpowering lively sound.
The mids on the DB3 have a decent amount of body to them, although they’re less refined than similarly tuned IEMs at this price point.
Unlike other IEMs that follow a similar light V-shape sound signature, the mids on the DB3 are pretty forward and revealing in a mix.
The treble on the NiceHCK DB3 has some sparkle to them.
There are some cases where it sounded bright, but compared to other IEMs in my collection that have a significant amount of brightness, the NiceHCK DB3 produced a more natural sound to them.
For example, hi-hats and snares sounded good in a mix. Plus I was able to enjoy listening to music without experiencing any harsh frequencies.
Music Listening Impressions
I’ve tested the NiceHCK DB3 on different genres of music to get a proper understanding of how they sound and here are my findings.
- Metal / Rock – Since the mid frequencies are one of the strengths of these IEMs, the male vocals and guitars sounded natural and revealing in the mix. It also managed to produce a tight sound relevant to this genre. Tracks used: Bulls on Parade (Rage Against the Machine), Rest In Peace (Extreme), Enter Sandman (Metallica)
- Pop – The vocals were significantly highlighted in this genre when using the DB3, as they stood out in the mix. The DB3 also has a good amount of detail retrieval, sound imaging, and audio separation, which helped with presenting the many layers of vocals in the tracks I’ve used. Tracks used: Positions (Ariana Grande), Get Free (Lana Del Rey)
- Hip-hop – The DB3 worked well on producing a lively mix of particular instrumentation on tracks such as Redbone. Although, it is easily noticeable that the DB3 lacked oomph in the bass response. Tracks used: After Party (Dan Toliver), Redbone (Childish Gambino)
- Indie – Instruments sounded great when using the DB3. The sound imaging capabilities of these IEMs stood out on the test tracks, which have a good amount of effects on them. The DB3 gave an accurate presentation of the different effects present in the mix. Tracks used: Over the Moon (The Marias), Space Song (Beach House), Wings (So Yoon and Phum Viphurit)
The NiceHCK DB3 is one of the few hybrid IEMs I’ve tested and immediately fell in love with. Its balanced tonal presentation and revealing mids made stand out from its competition.
Although a few years have passed since the release of these IEMs, they can still easily compete with more recent IEM releases, which says a lot about their quality.
Check out the NiceHCK DB3 if you’re looking for a pair of midrange-focused IEMs that sound great and won’t break the bank.
A man of many interests, Querho is passionate about discovering new things that stimulate the mind. When he is not writing about the things he is passionate about, Querho can be found making music at his home studio.
This post was last updated on 2023-09-28 / Some images from Amazon Product API & some links may be affiliate links which may earn us a commission from purchases.