TKZK Ouranos English Review


Smooth, Physical and Detailed




Construction and Design




  • Very accurate tuning that conjugates all bands in a smooth, detailed and clear way.
  • Very good level of detail and resolution for the price.
  • Good imaging.
  • Controlled, but present and extended treble.
  • Very comfortable and ergonomic.
  • Excellent value for money.




  • Excessive roughness of the bass can make them slightly out of control.
  • Zippered case not included.


Purchase Link


Link to the Store




TKZK seems to be a new brand from Dongguan, in China’s Guangdong province. It has two models in its catalogue (Wave and Ouranos) and little public history behind them, it is not easy to find additional information on the internet. The model I am going to review here, called Ouranos, is priced at $55, while the Wave is $39. It is a semi-custom IEMS, printed in resin and polished by hand. The outer face uses carbon fibre dipped in rose gold to form its particular pattern. Inside it uses a 10mm dynamic driver, with a CNT (carbon nanotube) diaphragm and an N52 neodymium magnet. It is designed with dual cavities for more enveloping acoustics. The cable has a soft, durable PVC jacket and the wires are silver-plated. It has an impedance of 32Ω and a sensitivity of 110dB. Next, let’s see what other features these new IEMS have.





  • Driver Type: 10mm dynamic driver with CNT (carbon nanotube) diaphragm and N52 neodymium magnet.
  • Frequency Response: 10Hz-20kHz.
  • Sensitivity: 110 ± 3dB @ 1kHz 0.126V.
  • Impedance: 32Ω ± 15%.
  • Distortion Ratio: 1% @ 1kHz 0.126V
  • Jack Connector: 3.5mm silver plated
  • Capsule Connection Type: 2Pin 0.78mm
  • Power rating: 3mW.
  • Maximum Power: 5mW.
  • Cable length: 1.2m.





The TKTK Ouranos come in a small white cardboard box, with very little information on it. Its dimensions are 86x88x68mm. On the front side there is only the model name in the centre and the logo in the top left corner. On the back side there is the brand logo in the centre, the company name, logos of the certifications it complies with at the bottom, an EAN13 and a couple of QR. I would like to comment that the brand logo is a bit confusing, it is difficult to read, at first glance, TKZK. The K’s look like an unclosed R. Also, they have a dot inside, what is it, an eye…? I can think of other comparisons, but I’ll keep them to myself. In any case, it looks like TKZK and, once again, K and Z are present in the name of a brand. I guess there are more letters in the alphabet.
With the outer cardboard removed, the remaining box is black. It has the logo in the centre, in gold lettering. On the back side are the specifications, the frequency response graph, the brand name and the certifications and barcodes of the outer carton are repeated. Under the cover, the first thing you can see is the instruction manual. Then there is a foam mould containing the capsules. Finally, on the lower level, there is a small white box with the rest of the accessories. The complete contents are as follows:


  • The two TKZK Ouranos capsules.
  • One 2Pin 0.78mm cable.
  • Three pairs of dark grey silicone tips, sizes SxMxL.
  • Three pairs of grey silicone tips with red core, sizes SxMxL.
  • One cloth bag for storage.


The packaging is small and compact, which I like, there are no superfluous gimmicks. I also like the fact that the frequency response is included, so there are no surprises. It is true that the cable is soft and manageable. It comes with two sets of tips and a carrying bag, which is not the kind I prefer. But you can’t ask for much more for the price.



Construction and Design


The TKZK Ouranos capsules have a semi-custom shape. They are made of black resin, 3D printed. The outer face is shaped like an equilateral triangle with very rounded corners. Under its surface you can see an irregular carbon fibre pattern dipped in rose gold. The brand name can be read in gold lettering on each capsule. They are relatively thick. Embedded in the border is the plastic piece containing the gold-plated, 2Pin 0.78mm connector. On the adjacent side there is a hole. The outer face is smooth and smooth, with a bulge at the end and a lighter bulge closer to the mouthpiece. The mouthpiece is metallic, silver-plated and has another hole near it, in the extension of the capsule towards them. It is 5.5mm long, has an inner diameter of 5.4mm, while the rim is 6mm. The grid is also made of the same material and is multi-perforated. All in all, it is a classic capsule, somewhat more rounded in shape, with a distinctive pattern on its outer face.
The cable has an aged copper colour, coated with soft PVC. It has over-ear guides made of a slightly stiffer plastic layer. It consists of two coiled strands. The sleeve of the 3.5mm SE gold-plated plug is metallic, cylindrical, depressed in the centre. It is thin and the smaller diameter at its centre is intended to make it easier to grip, but not enough. Its small and narrow size works against it. The splitter piece follows the same shape, shorter, with a larger diameter at the outlet than at the inlet. The pin is a cone that offers little resistance to the passage of the cable, so its function is not the best. The sleeve of the 2Pin connectors are cylinders with a grooved ring near the cable. There are R and L letters in white ink to differentiate the channel. The 2 pins are gold-plated and are mounted on a hard plastic translucent circular plate. There is a light grey velcro strap with the brand logo in white. All parts of the cable are metallic, in a matching colour to the cable. The cable is not bad, manageable, docile and soft. The plug is a bit thin and a bit slippery, even though it has fine grooves and the centre is narrower.



Adjustment and Ergonomics


The classic semi-spherical shape triumphs. The outer face is rounded, smooth and soft. The protrusion of the rim can become annoying after a few hours. The fit is firm, direct, there is no rotation. The mouthpieces are well designed for medium insertion, but their diameter may prevent it from being larger. Even, depending on the tips used, the fit may only be shallow. The angle is adequate and I have found no problem using my large foam-filled tips, which I make myself. With them, the sound is full and the isolation is remarkable. The over-ear guides are not annoying, thanks to their softness and low stiffness.







The profile of the TKZK Ouranos seems to follow the path of other successful IEMS in the same segment. Again, it is not a neutral profile, but it is within the parameters of balance and homogeneity. Again, much of its frequency response is within 10dB. You could call it a tiny w, with a relatively linear sub-bass and a fairly controlled mid-high emphasis. The difference lies in a roll-off start to the treble, something that detracts from its initial sparkle and liveliness. While I don’t consider it to feel dark, it does fall into the group of soft IEMS, organic in nature, analogue in character and warm in accent.





The bass is relatively compact, with a good extension towards the LFOs. They have a slight tendency to leak slightly, especially in the sense of roughness or texture. In this case, this aspect is not as controlled and combined with a bit of colour in the mid-bass, it is enhanced in a way that loses a bit of rigour. However, this does give it a distinct bit of personality that can be pleasing. It may not come across as fully defined, but it gives a spicy, riotous edge to the electronic music. On the downside, it loses depth and sensory capacity, hence its colour remains to the right of a completely natural tonality. The dryness of the hit is average, but it can still be said to retain control and good recovery. My traditional very low frequency pure tone test reveals a classic behaviour of a current dynamic driver, characterised by the roughness I mentioned. The physicality and presence below 40Hz feels more limited, its behaviour is not as sensory and the oscillation is more vibratory than sonic. Above this value, things return to order and the reproduction gains in fidelity. When hitting compact drums, the energy level is not too high, although it copes quite well. For my taste, it lacks a bit of body, more impactful physical sensation, power and energy. A bit more punch in general. However, I can’t complain about its performance with electronic music. On the other hand, the good thing is that it is not too invasive and its behaviour towards the low midrange is spot on.
Finally, in my other classic test with unfiltered bass passages and simultaneous bass lines, the Ouranos respond quite well, being able to follow the bass melodies without smearing and maintaining a good level of fidelity. In these cases it feels that it is not very dark or sensory and the ease of reproduction is based on generating a recognisable and relatively complex bass blanket, which is remarkable. However, the level of roughness in these cases, its relative lack of control, is often the point that can generate an ambivalent feeling towards its sonority. But I like it.





The beginning of the midrange is characterised by a gentle descent from the bass, something that gives the first half strength, physicality and body, without bleeding, veiling or muddiness until 1000 Hz or beyond. Admittedly, the entrance to the centre is not completely clean and there is a little warmth that carries over into this area. This is a fact that is usually pleasing to my ears, as long as this does not mean that the sound becomes cloying. And this is not the case here. The result is a well-represented first half, where the male voices have a middle distance, vigour, strength, though not a lush, surrounding body, which gives them a superior three-dimensionality. In this respect, they are simpler, which is logical for IEMS of this range. On the other hand, the ornamental richness, the nuances and details, make for a relatively rich and decisive performance. I don’t miss a greater harmonic development, despite the softness of the treble. The tone is adequate, within that neutral/warm range, with no faults or sibilance. The level of definition is remarkable and the descriptive ability of the ensemble does not make me miss playing the music with other IEMS. In that respect, it is clear that these are not analytical IEMS, but there is enough transparency and separation to notice a good level of light and distinction between notes. There is no obvious cohesion and the notes have a thickness that makes them individual, but without losing musicality. A good compromise between naturalness, cleanliness and resolute competence.
In the second half there is a controlled enhancement at the entrance of the treble. It is somewhat short in comparison to that excitement which seeks exalted detail, vigour, luminosity or forced brilliance. The tuning does not seek that, but pursues a more dynamic clarity, which does not lose its composure, nor does it separate the fundamental from its ornaments indiscriminately, which is a good thing. It may be a little limited in force, but you can’t always have everything. And perhaps that is the difference between this group of IEMS that navigate a similar FR. The struggle is there and everyone’s taste will have the last word.





Despite all of the above: that initial cut in the first treble and the homogeneity of the amplitude of the whole FR, I find the initial treble punch commendable. There are always IEMS that are too controlled in this respect, whose sonority feels clearly limited, muted. This is not the case here. The initial sparkle, while not a prodigy of vertical and horizontal expansion, feels quite full. There is a good compromise between energy level and extension, which gives the sound a pleasing and stretched treble rigour in equal parts. The sound is natural, slightly muted, but satisfying, present, even engaging and surprisingly rich, within its obvious capabilities.
The top notes are medium to thin in thickness. They are not sharp or crisp, but there is a low-sparkle, but still felt brightness. This is noticeable in the midrange harmonics and in the level of detail.
The dynamic drivers increasingly extend their range and the airy feel exceeds the level of testimonial, by far. Quite good overall.



Soundstage, Separation


I would place the size of the scene above average. Although it is not very deep, it has a more remarkable height, with a patent laterality. It seems to me a more frontal approach, which acquires a certain ethereal level, due to the elevation of the notes. But, without reaching a very immersive or three-dimensional presentation. Again, the coherence between the three bands and the good tuning between mid-high and treble, gives the sound a remarkable grace in the representation of the details, being perceptible, even the smallest ones. A remarkable quality for an IEMS of its range and non-analytical tuning. All this is also thanks to its resolution, definition, dynamics, amount of air and, obviously, distance between elements and amount of separation. Very good.





TinHiFi T2 DLC 2022


Without a doubt, if there is a brand that moves like a fish in water in this price segment, it is none other than TinHiFi. And it proved it with its T2 DLC 2022 model, an IEMS currently priced at around $53. I still think that TinHiFi’s latest models move around a similar tuning, with minor modifications in between. The TKZK Ouranos could be added to that group, because their FR is not very different from that of the DLC 2022. They just have a little more sub-bass and less extension in the first treble. The rest of the curve is really similar. But these two important differences are enough to clearly express the differences in the sound of both. But, before going into the sound, I will list the obvious physical differences. The Ouranos have a semi-custom shape and are made of resin. The DLCs have that traditional ballistic L-shaped, all-metal form. Comfort is superior on the TKZK. It’s not that the DLCs are uncomfortable, but their fit is less perfect and more free-flowing.
In terms of accessories, both are about the same, but the DLCs’ silver cable is thinner than the Ouranos’, although the plug sleeve is larger and more useful.
Turning to sound, the Ouranos are subtly more sensitive. Their profile is warmer, deeper, with a higher bass presence. Or, depending on how you look at it, with a lower treble presence, offering a less bright sound, where bass can be more predominant. In the DLCs, the higher treble presence is noticeable, offering superior clarity and finesse. But when it comes to the bass, there are not so many differences. The Ouranos reach a lower level with more power and offer a more evident texture. The DLCs are more concise, better defined, but also drier and more immediate. The Ouranos offer a slightly bigger bass, taking up more space, with more physicality, volume and energy. But they also leave more resonance. It is here that the extra presence is noticeable. The DLCs have better technical ability, but less fun as well.
In the midrange, the Ouranos offer a warmer naturalness, a little more muted, but with a fair amount of detail. I find the timbre more sedate and pleasant, while the DLCs are more brightness-oriented, being a little warmer in the upper-mids. This adds a heightened sense of transparency, as well as a more obvious inclination to detail. That’s not to say that Ouranos are less detailed. At the limit, they might be about the same, but in the DLCs, this one is more obvious and prominent, though it can also be more overwhelming. I have regarded the TinHiFi as a reference in this range, with a very well achieved and homogeneous neutral-slightly bright sound. Similarly, the Ouranos are like a warmer, softer version, possessing many of the virtues of the DLCs, but with a more neutral-subtly dark sound. And that’s what you feel in the treble – there’s more energy and lift in the DLCs, they’re more crisp and explicit. On the other side, the Ouranos are softer and a bit more diffuse, less thin. The thickness of the notes in the DLCs is thinner, slimmer and sharper, offering a more analytical and cooler profile.
Scene-wise, I find more depth, body and laterality in the Ouranos, as well as that extra height. The thinner note feel makes the DLCs sound flatter. In contrast, the Ouranos seem more three-dimensional. For the same thickness of the DLC’s notes, their separation is good. But the Ouranos don’t lack resolution and know how to distance the elements by putting a dark background in between. The larger space of their image allows for a separation that seems more evident.
In the end, these are two great IEMS, it is clear that the inclination of each one towards a profile will reveal their preference for one or the other model. My tendency towards bass and a more corporeal midrange inclines me towards the Ouranos, winning by the slimmest of margins due to this personal bias.





As a first impression, I thought that the TKZK Ouranos were going to be one more in this tough and combative price range. Here, everyone will have their own kings and their own opinion will have the last word. But when it comes to judging IEMS, each reviewer has his or her own preferences and what may be white for some may be black for others. There is no such thing as neutrality in this sense. And that is the case here. Having tried these IEMS and compared them with other references in the range, I lean towards their more sedate sound in the high end, with a larger, more corporeal, deeper and rougher low end, a more physical, very detailed, resolving midrange and a remarkably descriptive, yet very controlled treble. It is true that the inoffensive sound can have many detractors. But I am glad to know that there is an economic aspect that adds a differential plus. In this case, that innocence does not imply a cohesive softness that limits other technical features. And that’s why I find myself faced with a very good level of detail, resolution, definition, even scene and image. It’s an opinion like any other, don’t you think so?



Sources Used During the Analysis


  • Aune X8 XVIII Magic DAC + EarMen ST-Amp.
  • Earmen Angel.
  • TempoTec Variations V6.
  • ACMEE MF02s.
  • xDuoo XD05 BAL.
  • Hidizs AP80 PRO-X Red Copper Limited Edition.
  • Aune Flamingo.