TRN ST2 Earphones Review – Is It An Improvement Over The ST1?

TRN ST2

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Current testing methodology is v1.2

Release Date
June 25, 2021
Price
Price not available
Weight
2.57 oz
Size
4 x 2.75 x 1.1 in

I stumbled upon the TRN ST2 while I was looking for a new set.

Since I already have its predecessor, which is the ST1, I got curious about how it would measure up. I decided to purchase it so I could create a comparison between these two versions of the ST IEMs.

I had high hopes that the ST2 is a more refined version of the ST1, but it has its own thing going on with a very different tuning. It also has its fair share of hits and misses that we’ll discuss in this review so let’s get to it!

Also Consider

TRN ST2

Excellent comfort and build quality, harsh sound.

3.5/5
Price Range: $
Brand: TRN Audio
TRN ST2 - Casing

TL:DR;

The TRN ST2 is a budget hybrid IEM from TRN and the successor to the ST1.

Compared to its predecessor, the ST2 features a different shape, although both models are quite comfortable. The ST2 also has an impressive build and it even has a premium feel to it despite being a budget set.

In terms of sound, it has impressive clarity and sound staging capabilities to make up for its harsh tuning.

The TRN ST2 isn’t a bad set overall but it’s definitely not an improvement over its predecessor and there are much better IEMs that you can get for the same price.

The Specs

  • Driver:  1 Dynamic Driver + 1 Balanced Armature Driver
  • Cable:  3.5mm plug / 0.75mm pin
  • Frequency:  20Hz – 20,000Hz
  • Impedance:  22Ω
  • Sensitivity:  107db
  • Weight:  9.2g+13g (single earphone + cable)

What’s in the Box?

  • TRN ST2 earphones
  • 3 x pairs of silicone ear tips
  • 2-pin detachable cable
  • User guide

Stuff I like

  • Great definition and clarity in the presentation
  • Decent treble extension
  • Impressive soundstage
  • Great build quality

Stuff I like less

  • Treble peaks
  • Too bright for my liking
  • Harsh sounding

Comparable products to consider

TRN ST1
TRN ST1

The predecessor to the ST2, the TRN ST1 offers a more standard V-shaped tuning with an entertaining sound presentation.

KZ ZSN Pro
KZ ZSN Pro

The KZ ZSN Pro is considered one of the best-sounding IEMs at its price point and even though it was released a few years ago, it can still compete with newer sets.

Review Metrics

Sound Quality: 8
Bass: 7
Mids: 8
Treble: 6
Sound Isolation: 10
Build Quality: 8
Comfort & Fit: 10
Value for Money: 8
Accessories: 8
Review Metrics Average: 8.11 / 10

First Impressions

The TRN ST2 came in pretty standard TRN packaging – nothing out of the ordinary except a different presentation on the graphics, as the product image is in landscape compared to the usual portrait orientation.

The ST2 has a weird shape and upon removing it from the box for a closer look, I realized that its weird shape is due to its shell’s ergonomic grooves. 

After some research, I learned that TRN designed the ST2’s shape based on their ear imprint database to produce a more custom-like fit that offers better comfort and noise isolation.

TRN has also updated its cable. The newer cable seems more durable compared to the previous versions.

TRN ST2 IEM
Black resin shell with logo on the faceplate | Make Life Click

Build Quality

Although having a resin shell, the TRN ST2 had a premium feel and showed no signs that it was cheaply made. 

It feels durable and based on my experience with TRN, I can attest that their IEMs can last long. I’ve had mine for about two years now and it’s still in good condition.

The updated cable feels durable as well. It’s a 4-core silver-plated copper cable with gold-plated connectors and I really like that TRN included this in a budget set.

Fit and Comfort

The fit and comfort of the TRN ST2 are excellent. 

The way that TRN designed the grooves on the ST2’s shell is phenomenal, making these IEMs fit my ears like a glove. These IEMs gave me more comfort and a much better seal compared to other sets in my collection.

The ST2 has a smaller size which provides a better fit for small to medium-sized ears, plus they feel lightweight because they’re made of resin.

Although TRN used standard silicone ear tips for the ST2, they’re pretty decent, providing a snug fit and good sound isolation for my ears.

TRN ST2 - Silicone Tips
Mid-size and curved edges for comfortable wear | Make Life Click

Sound Quality Impressions

When I first tried out the TRN ST2, I immediately noticed a metallic timbre to its sound quality with a mix of treble peaks. 

This was unpleasant, mainly because I’m a bit treble-sensitive, plus my preference leans towards more warm-sounding IEMs.

Bass

The bass on the TRN ST2 has a good amount of texture, definition, and clarity. 

What it lacks is the overall presence in the mix. Some may like this characteristic of the ST2 but for me, it resulted in an overall thin presentation of the songs.

On the other hand, it has a precise presentation paired with many details.

Mids

The TRN ST2 is crystal clear in presentation and is one of the better-sounding mids I’ve listened to. 

However, it does take a toll on the treble’s aggressive and harsh tonality, resulting in an overall weird tuning.

There’s a bit of warmth to the presentation of the mids on the TRN ST2, and the details are definitely above average.

TRN ST2 inside the casing
Featuring 10mm dual-magnet high flux dynamic driver | Make Life Click

Treble

The treble wasn’t made for sensitive people as it was a bit too harsh and aggressive for my liking and it’s prone to peaking. 

Although it featured a significant amount of clarity and definition in the presentation, its shouty and overall bright tuning was a deal breaker for me as it was sometimes fatiguing and hard to listen to.

Test Tracks

I have tested the TRN ST2 on different genres of music to get a proper understanding of how they sound and here are my findings.

  • Rock – The TRN ST2 showcased its soundstage and sound separation capabilities on the test tracks. The guitars were neatly presented and had great depth and clarity. On the other hand, the vocals and other instruments that sit on higher frequencies were aggressive in terms of presentation. Tracks used: Mississippi Queen (Mountain), Blackhole Sun (Soundgarden), Even Flow (Pearl Jam)
  • Pop – The aggressive treble tuning worked best with the more energetic and lively sound qualities of the pop and K-pop genres. On the test tracks, their vocals had a good amount of shimmer and a lovely timbre. The vocals were nicely presented in the front of the mix but didn’t appear to be too overpowering even though they did suffer from treble peaks from time to time. Tracks used: Bad Boy (Red Velvet), OMG (NewJeans), Everybody Wants to Rule the World (Tears for Fears)
  • Hip-hop – When testing out the TRN ST2 for the hip-hop genre, it showed an overall lack of bass presence. Although the bass sounded more subdued compared to most V-shaped IEMs, the ST2 still produced a good definition of the bass region. It also produced a nice texture although it could have been punchier than I expected. Tracks used: Amen (Shanti Dope and Pricetagg), Cash In Cash Out (Pharell Williams ft. 21 Savage & Tyler the Creator)
  • Indie – The soundstage of the TRN ST2 shined the most when listening to the spacey characteristic of the test tracks. These IEMs provided great depth to the tracks without drowning out the higher frequencies. Tracks used: Show Me How (Men I Trust), Space Song (Beach House), Queen of Disaster (Lana Del Rey)
  • R&B / Soul – The TRN ST2 presented a significant amount of definition to different regions of the songs. In the test tracks, the bass had a good amount of texture and was tight in presentation. The instruments sat between the upper mids and treble frequency and were relatively smooth in presentation. The vocals cut through the mix nicely and were presented with good clarity and detail. Tracks used: Devil in the Details (Mac Ayres), Get You (Daniel Ceasar), Telepatia (Kali Uchis)
TRN ST2 - Detachable Cable
2-pin connector and detachable cables | Make Life Click

Conclusion

The TRN ST2 has an overall aggressive tuning that was noticeable on the treble frequencies. 

Its impressive clarity and sound staging capabilities were needed to compensate for the lack of bass presence and the harshness of its sound.

LEARN MORE ABOUT THIS ONE?
FEDAI TRN ST2 1BA 1DD Over Ear Earbuds Wired Earphones in Ear Monitor Earbuds Hybrid Balanced Armature Driver Dynamic Drivers & 3.5mm Audio Plug Detachable Cable
TRN ST2

The TRN leans toward a more analytical sound presentation rather than a fun sound. For its price, it’s still a competitive pair of IEMs but I wouldn’t recommend it as much as other IEMs I’ve reviewed.

TRN ST2 IEM
TRN ST2
Sound Quality
Build Quality
Comfort and fit
Value for money
4.3

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 2024-05-23 / Some images from Amazon Product API & some links may be affiliate links which may earn us a commission from purchases.


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