Just a little bit ago, I reviewed the A3000 - and today I’m going to be breaking down everything you need to know about it’s sister the model, the A4000. Along the way, I’ll be comparing my findings between the two so you can easily decide which of these may be right for you. The A4000 and A3000 have a lot in common, but there’s also some key differences that may make the difference - namely in the signal output, and the details of their sound signatures.
What’s in the Box?
The packaging here is unsurprisingly very similar to that of the A3000, with the same box and the layout inside looking virtually identical. Inside, there’s the same silicone case that contains your earbuds and your detachable 2 pin connector cable. Below this is a small plastic box that contains 5 pairs of final audio eartips. Finally, underneath the foam cutouts are your paperwork and a pair of ear hooks.
Design and Fit
The housing of the A4000 is a deep navy blue matte and looks very sleek and smooth, again much like the A3000. The housings also feel solid but are very light weight, as has been the trend for Final’s latest in ear releases.
If you already checked out the A3000, you’ll recognize that the construction and the shape here is just about exactly the same, and in fact is very similar to the A8000 as well. The IEM shape is nicely ergonomic, and even with the large ear tips attached they slotted very nicely into my ear canal and stayed in with no discomfort.
This shape and the lightness of the housing makes these extremely comfortable for long use, and I had no issues with their fit at all. I could complain that Final Audio’s products have looked too homogenous as of late, but when they’re this practical, it seems like a matter of not fixing what isn’t broken. This is one of my favorite ear shell shapes in general, and it really does rival some much more expensive units just in terms of that comfort and weightlessness.
Feel free to check out out comparison video review as well. Watch it below.
Drivers and Output
Another similarity between this unit and the A4000 is that the introduction of the brand new F core DU driver unit.
This is a 6mm dynamic driver system that features all new diaphragms, voice coils, magnets, magnetic circuits and adhesives - even so far as a different melding process to bring these unique components together.
The driver coating is topped with brass instead of the traditional aluminum in order to generate a greater amount of magnetic resistance and specific gravity. This sophisticated driver system overhaul is designed to increase transient response, dynamic performance and overall sound quality.
The A4000, like it’s sister model, is a low impedance model with a resistance of just 18 ohms. However, the A4000 features a much louder signal output with a boosted sensitivity of 100db/mw at 1khz. This makes the A4000 much more amenable to use with your laptop or smartphone without any headroom issues.
When I reviewed the A3000 previously, I commented that Final Audio earbuds consistently have some of the best soundstage performance of any on the market. I thought the soundstage in that model was really stellar, and somehow it has gotten even better with the A4000.
The great amount of width is matched here, but the real improvement comes in the details of the imaging and layering. I noted in the review for the A3000 that some particular bright drum hits landed very satisfyingly on the top of your head space, but busy drum fills in the A4000 have an even more tremendous amount of spatial dynamism.
Even when they aren’t recorded using lots of pans or localized effects, the resonances of the different timbres bounce around in a lovely and expansive way. If you’ve had a lot of Rush in your listening rotation lately, then Neil Peart’s frenetic and virtuosic style will sound better than ever.
The separation is really clean here and the spacing and layering is very natural and much more defined than the A3000 - which was no slouch either. That just goes to show how excellent the performance really is here.
The low end here is defined by quickness and punch, with a nice satisfying response that hits decently hard. I would say overall compared to the A3000, the response here may seem a tad less strong for hardcore bassheads, as the focus is a bit more on detail and accurate timbre reproduction than raw rumble.
You’ll always be able to feel a great amount of bass, but it does have a bit of a different texture than the A3000 - and at a higher price point, it makes sense that the low end in this unit is predicated on being a tad more refined in character.
The mid range is absolutely the standout of this unit, and provides an amount of detail that is exceedingly rare for a unit that is in this more accessible price range. Presentation is crisp and airy. It displays a great balancing act between articulate transparency and a touch of great feeling warmth.
The A300 had a nice forward lean to the mids and an emphasis on natural timbre, and the A400 just takes this a little further - with sensitive elements like strings and guitars feeling incredibly clean and organic. The mid range also brings out the best of any lead vocal timbre and really makes it shine. Regardless of genre, lead singers always seem to float perfectly above the mix in well recorded material.
The treble represents maybe the largest departure in similarity from the A3000, as the quality here features much more color and affectation. The texture and detail feature a decent amount of sweetness, and there is some sibilance produced as you climb up into the higher registers.
If you are extremely averse to this kind of thing, that may be enough to put you off or turn you toward the cheaper sister model. But I personally think this little bit of coloration really lifts the entire sound signature and adds a nice textural quality that makes the details pop. The highs have a good amount of sparkle, but not the same airy quality as the mid range.
Overall, the joint release of the A3000 and A4000 have been an excellent addition to Final Audio’s great catalogue of in ear models. As more affordable variations on the flagship A8000, each offers specific strengths and weaknesses that makes either one a worthy purchase.
The more budget friendly A3000 has a great wide soundstage, really nice natural timbre and an extremely comfortable and ergonomic design.
The A4000 has the same great design, an even better layered soundstage and a sound signature that’s very detailed, but a little more colored and even slightly sibilant as you get up into the higher registers.
If you’re looking to get your first pair of quality earbuds, or just trying to find the next piece for your collection, you can’t go wrong with either of these models.