TinHiFi P1 MAX Giant Panda English Review


The Most Expressive Planar




Construction and Design




  • Clean, clear, crystal-clear and detailed sound.
  • Wide soundstage.
  • Contained but expressive treble.
  • Good tuning.
  • Remarkable technical characteristics.
  • Very light and easy to fit capsule.
  • Very good quality/price ratio.




  • Not very deep sound.
  • Bass and the first half of the mids are a bit thin.
  • No zippered case.


Purchase Link




Con cable Modular:




Link to the WEB






For the second time in a row, I repeat a review of a TinHiFi product. This time it is a new planar. TinHiFi is not new to planar IEMS and it’s been more than a year since I reviewed the second planar IEMS the brand released, the P2. Those were premium IEMS that were very difficult to move. Really, the hardest IEMS I have ever tried. While their packaging was of high quality, their profile was «peculiar». It stood out for its high end, probably the most excited high end (especially in the air) that I have ever tested. However, I don’t think it had the grace of the new planar models. And this is where these new P1 Max Giant Panda come in. A really long name for an IEMS. Perhaps, the Giant Panda refers to their large capsules. There is no doubt that its stubby body is different from the other models of the brand and the rest of the planars. But this gives it a feeling of a larger stage, without the weight suffering at all. On the contrary, the P1 Max are very light and comfortable to wear. In terms of sound, it has more in common with the other current planars than with its big brother. The difference is that the P1 Max’s tuning has a little more clarity, a little more transparency, a slightly more analytical and brighter profile, with less noticeable bass. Without a doubt, this is a great alternative in the current planar battle.





  • Driver Type: Φ14.2 mm planar magnetic drive.
  • Frequency Response: 10Hz-20kHz.
  • Sensitivity: 98±3dB @1kHz 0.126V.
  • Impedance: 16Ω±15%.
  • Power rating: 5 mW.
  • Maximum power: 10 mW.
  • Distortion Ratio: 3 % @ 1 kHz 0.126 V.
  • Jack connector: 3.5mm SE gold-plated. Modular cable option available.
  • Capsule Connection Type: 2Pin 0.78mm gold plated connector.





The P1 Max comes in a white square box, with all lettering in black. Its dimensions are 140x125x47mm. The logo is on the top left and the model name has motifs that allude to the panda: its footprints in the letter holes, a 1 like a bamboo, two happy pandas looking out. The back side is completely sober, codes and logos of certifications, Chinese lettering and where it was made. After removing the outer cardboard it gives way to an all-black box, with a lid bearing the brand’s silver logo. It is padded on the inside and underneath is a manual and a warranty card. The IEMS capsules are encased in black textured foam. Next to it is another black cardboard box, which repeats the silver logo. Inside are all the accessories, in little plastic bags. In a nutshell:


  • The two capsules.
  • One 108-strand single crystal copper cable.
  • 6 pairs of dark silicone tips, sizes SxMxL.
  • 3 pairs of dark silicone tips with red core, sizes SxMxL.
  • 2 pairs of foam tips, sizes MxL.
  • One cloth bag.


The number of tips is appreciated, but something more than a cloth bag to protect the IEMS is missing.
The packaging combines the fun exterior with a more sober and neat interior, with a padded cover that protects the IEMS and its accessories.
There is an option to buy it with a modular cable, although it is a bit more expensive.



Construction and Design


As I mentioned in the presentation, the capsules of the P1 Max are stubby, very rounded. The outer part is almost semi-spherical in shape. They are black, with a golden net motif. They are made of lightweight resin and I quote «the panels are handmade, using a 3D printed stainless steel torch drawing process». The thickness of the capsules is clear. The inner side is also very rounded and convex. It has two holes, one near the rim, the other closer to the mouthpiece. The mouthpiece is smooth, tubular, cylindrical, has no step in its first half and is fully integrated into the body. Only the rim has a ring of slightly larger diameter. Its approximate length is 5mm and its diameter is 5.8mm. It is protected by a perforated metal grid. On each capsule there is a white letter indicating the channel.
The P1 Max uses a 14.2mm planar driver, which «employs a diaphragm only 2μm thick and adopts a double-sided N52 magnet to generate a huge magnetic flux».
The 2Pin 0.78mm connection plates are embedded in the body of the capsules. They consist of two rectangular hard plastic plates.
The cable consists of two strands of 108 mono-crystalline copper wires. It is protected by a transparent sheath, which allows the purity of the cable to be seen inside. The connector is 3.5mm SE gold-plated. Its sleeve is a cylinder with three parts, two smooth metal parts at the ends, a centre part twice as long with a carbon pattern. A stepped sleeve in translucent, flexible plastic protects the two intertwined strands at their exit. The dividing piece repeats the design, but is half the length. The adjusting pin is a shiny metal ring. It has a transparent plastic cover that gives it the over-ear shape. The gold-plated 2Pin 0.78mm connectors are mounted on shiny metal cylinders. Each is differentiated by a red or blue ring to indicate the channel. The cable has a velcro strap for easy storage.
Despite the thickness, they are surprisingly light. It’s not a spectacular design and I think the name Giant Panda is perhaps due to the large, rounded, stubby shape of the capsules themselves.



Adjustment and Ergonomics


The Giant Panda has a simple ergonomics, based on a very rounded shape that barely touches the parts of the ear. The mouthpieces do not have a tip stop and this is something I don’t like, because the insertion can be variable. In addition, the optimal fit of the tips can slip, which can lead to slight changes in the sound, because the insertion distance can vary. For these cases I usually use stops. Some of them I make with halves of unused silicone tip cores. Sometimes I also use rubber O-rings. For this case, I find it absolutely necessary to use these little accessories, to obtain a slightly deeper and more constant insertion, without feeling the pressure of the inner side against my ears. This way, the capsule is a bit floating, allowing a slight rotation, but offering a very comfortable fit. The superior fit I get with my foam-filled home-made tips provides a fairly high insulation rating, as well as a level of fit that, combined with the lightness of the capsules, makes them very suitable for everyday, outdoor, walking or hiking use.







There is something curious about my P1 Max model and that is that its frequency response does not match the rest of the measurements made by the Squiglink reviewers. Not even with the frequency response that can be found on the model’s own website. I asked the brand if it was possible that there was an update in the sound signature and they said no. So it is possible that it is a combination of several factors: it is possible that my unit is slightly different, that my measurement hardware has also influenced this. In any case, it is not a defective unit, because both channels are the same and hardly differ at all.
On the other hand, this difference does not mean that the tuning is bad. On the contrary, I like the P1 Max right from the start.
They have a clear W profile that is much more pronounced than in the rest of the FR. While the rest of the measurements have a flatter profile, in my unit the sub-bass is more emphasised (the first vertex of the W), just one point below the maximum at 2khz (second vertex of the W). The rest of the frequency response is more similar to the rest of the measurements, taking into account the problems of the microphones we use to represent this region according to reality.
It is worth noting that the sound of the P1 Max is very clean. The transition from bass to midrange is fairly neutral. But it is worth noting that the first half of the midrange is rather thin, without much physicality or body. It is devoid of warmth. The second half is clearly more explicit, something that creates a point of imbalance. But perhaps that’s its plus point, because it achieves a level of luminosity and transparency that I haven’t seen in the other planar I’ve reviewed. In fact, this model is more mid-range oriented, while the treble extension is also very good, but less emphasised. But overall it could be considered more present and clear, because the low end is more neutral, globally speaking.





As usual, my head always leans towards a comparison between bass from dynamic drivers and the case at hand. This planar bass is not capable of moving as much air, nor does it produce as much sensory sensation as those. You could even say that it is subtly coloured, because its LFOs are more audible than sensory. And this denotes that colour and lack of depth. Having said all this, it’s not about demonising the low end of the P1 Max either, it’s about describing it. And sometimes a comparison is worth a thousand words. What is good in this range, though, is its technical ability, it recovers with speed, the aftertaste is almost non-existent, it is agile, it has a good roughness, a descriptive and purring texture. It is also capable of handling complicated, unfiltered passages well, offering a good response. It is not well suited to layering or parallel bass lines, though. It is, at this point, where there is difficulty in separating the bass in depth, offering a flatter, closer feel.
If there is one thing that is surprising about these P1s, it’s the sheer scale of their exposure: the image is wide in width and height, but suffers in depth. And that’s noticeable from the bass. The result is a lower range that has more presence than neutrality, whose impact on the sound is quite clean, but which does not provide the good characteristics of its dynamic rivals.





Perhaps the most uneven range, but also the most enjoyable. As I have already mentioned, it has a clean, somewhat withdrawn first half, neutral in physicality and body, even somewhat thin in this respect. In this way, the male voices feel thinner and somewhat incomplete, lacking presence in their main fundamental. Their projection is higher and shallower, they feel less corporeal, less dense, but also cleaner. If you are looking for thick, powerful male vocals, the P1 Max will not be your choice. Likewise, the drums will sound a bit simpler and the guitars a bit sharper. And this is also due to the clear enhancement in the 2kHz range. However, this fact does work in favour in other aspects. Like, for example, in the female vocals. Without making them the star of the show, the profile favours them.
On the other hand, the central range is very clean, very well defined, more analytical, transparent, explicit and descriptive. These are not detail-oriented IEMS, as I have commented on other occasions. Rather, they have a thinner, more neutral presentation, but with a higher resolving power. I find more detail, but also more compensation between nuances and notes in general. There is no imbalance in this sense, but complementarity. It is finer, more delicate, but also more detailed, broader and more transparent. Small nuances are marked gracefully and effortlessly. Both macro and micro detail are within earshot and require little effort to discover. But at no point do they feel forced, but are rendered in a natural and appropriate manner.
The breadth of the sound has room to accommodate all these features, without the sound becoming overexposed or overloaded. That’s the right balance to have. It is true that if there were more physicality, the density would have made the range more opaque. But in this price range, sometimes a decision has to be made in favour of one feature or another. And the P1 Max has made that choice, opting for a more delicate balance, but one that works very well.





The restraint of the treble is felt in the sibilance. The initial clarity could indicate a sound oriented towards this negative aspect. But the tuning of the treble avoids this sensation. It is not a nuanced sibilance, but a well-executed one. The hiss is described in a characteristic, but realistic way. It is never piercing, but resolves gracefully and naturally. It is the perfect example of what the treble of the P1 Max is like: it is there, in its full extent, but in an appropriate and measured emphasis. They are extended, but restrained. They may not crunch as much as other IEMS, but they’re not soft either. This could be a measured, extended presentation, an expert exposition, sweeter and more musical, but broad and enjoyable. There is no darkness, but neither do they feel sharp, nor are they completely fine, though they possess delicacy, a remarkable expressive capacity, very good resolution and precise, highly detailed execution. The analytical aspect is also felt here, but the more moderate level has managed to endow the upper range with a very adequate and highly enjoyable musicality. All in all, it is a range that enriches the other elements, as well as being thoroughly enjoyable in its own right. On top of that, the extension and almost linear presence of the range offer an excellent all-round result.



Soundstage, Separation


If there is one thing that is striking about the Giant Panda, it is the breadth of its scene. While it doesn’t feel deep, it is very open, with plenty of height and width. The sense of clarity, transparency and air breathes a greater distance between elements. The remarkable definition further delineates the notes. This is undoubtedly an above-average size, which feeds the expressiveness and descriptiveness of the whole.
The scene is not completely vaporous, because it feels very well defined, but there is an ethereal feel that elevates the notes to a higher, three-dimensional level, without them escaping the head. To be completely excellent, the depth would have to be better, to gain in range, length and surround feel.
It is clear that the separation is very good, evident and palpable. The background is not so dark and obvious, despite the level of resolution and analysis. The P1 Max has a delicate musicality that allows details to be more explicit than the silences between elements.





LetShuoer S12


As I’m very original, I’m going to compare the P1 Max against the S12, a real «first». But the battle between planars is in fashion, even if it’s late in the day.
The S12 is one of the most famous and most admired planars. For my part, I must confess that their frequency response fits my (not yet defined in SquigLink) theoretical profile, in a high percentage of their curve. The P1 Max are not exactly very different in the FR, but for the ears they are.
First, as always, let’s talk about non-sound aspects. The S12s are metallic, smaller and very well built. They fit well and have a good cable, which can be improved, but good, almost at the price point. The P1 Max are larger, made of resin, but are more comfortable and lighter. The fit is longer with the S12 and freer with the P1 Max. Each has its advantages in terms of ergonomics, but the lightness of the P1 Max makes them subtly superior in this respect, at least in my opinion. In terms of accessories, both come with a similar number of tips, but the S12s come with a beautiful zippered case, while the P1 Max comes with just a cloth pouch.
In terms of sound, the differences are clear. There is a more powerful presence in the low end of the S12s, while there is more light and detail in the P1 Max. Switching to TinHiFi is like changing colour temperature. The S12s are warm and the P1 Max are whiter, purer and brighter. This perception affects the sound density, which is higher in the S12s. The Panda’s are thinner and more delicate, offering more detail in a simpler, calmer way. Their lower density makes them feel like they have more separation, as well as a wider soundstage. I can only say that the S12s have better depth, while three-dimensionally and holographically the P1 Max are better.
The enhancement, tone, timbre, colour, power, punch and bass presentation is superior on the S12s. It only takes me 2 seconds to realise this. They are also more complex and richer, realistic and natural. The Panda’s have more colour, are thinner, less layered and less deep. They are also drier and dissipate sooner, but they don’t go very far. Better and more noticeable texture, sensory capacity, darkness, range and vibrancy in the S12s.
In the mid-range, I prefer the first half of the S12s, the warmth creep of their bass, which adds a superior physical, dense and corporeal feel to both vocals and instruments. The sound is fuller, thicker and more complete in this area of the S12s, bringing an extra level of texture, musicality, thickness and lushness. The P1 Max are thinner, finer and more delicate, not dense, not full-bodied. They lack foundation and depth in the lower male voices, being less impressive and lighter. But they are clearer, sharper and more separated. Lacking that density, they feel freer and more exalted, closer, clearer and brighter. This expands in the second half of the midrange. The lower bass presence also frees up the midrange and it is possible to hear nuances more clearly in the TinHifi. In general, they are more analytical, but this aspect does not imply that they are IEMS in this way. It is just that, comparatively speaking, they do have more explicit power. Whereas the S12s are more relaxed in this respect, more rounded. The tables are turned somewhat in the treble. The P1 Max are an example of extension, restraint, descriptive power, but with a lower energy level than the S12s. The best thing is that the P1 Max limit that proposed upward projection of the midrange and enter a pleasant but very representative zone. The S12s boast flat treble that’s a little more excited and qualitatively good as well. However, it is true that the timbre is not the same in both.
Better scene in the P1 Max, more evident, large, airy, separated, holographic, transparent and luminous. Although short on depth. The S12s are not very good in this respect, but they add a little more depth.
My final choice is not clear. As a bass lover, I lean towards the S12. But I also like the wider, more analytical sound of the P1 Max. My luck is to have both and choose them when I want one or the other.





The Tin HiFi P1 Max Giant Panda are as necessary as the length of their name is unnecessary. They are a great alternative in this fight and offer a distinctive and appreciable display. With a chubbier, larger and lighter capsule, their sound is brighter, more detailed, more open and more analytical, with a richer, more explicit sound. It has what others only hint at, but it also lacks some of the virtues of the competition. It is clear that the full planar has not yet arrived, but the P1 Max is not just one more, but a great, more descriptive and wider alternative. A remarkable acquisition. A great evolution within TinHiFi’s planar models.



Sources Used During the Analysis


  • Aune Flamingo.
  • Hidizs XO.
  • Earmen Angel.
  • TempoTec Variations V6.
  • Hidizs AP80 PRO-X Red Copper Limited Edition.
  • ACMEE MF02s.
  • xDuoo XD05 BAL.