Today I'll be reviewing the KZ ZSA. I appreciate all feedback, so let me know what you think in the comments!
I bought the ZSA from AliExpress a couple months ago. I have written a text review on this page, and you can watch my video review at the end of this post.
Enjoy the read!
Overview and Design
I purchased the ZSA from AliExpress a few months ago for around $17. The ZSA comes in two colors: red/black, and gray. I bought the red/black ones.
The ZSA is made completely of aluminum. It feels very high quality, as most of KZ's earphones do. There are three small screws on the shell, and three vent holes. So this is a semi-open-back earphone, which means you get a wider, more open soundstage.
What I really like about the ZSA is that KZ included their new braided cable in the box. In previous models, KZ has used a sticky, rubbery cable which is capable, but doesn't feel great. The braided cable is a welcome upgrade.
The cables are in fact detachable. It's cool that KZ includes detachable cables on a budget earphone. But KZ has a history of including such features: exchangeable brass tuning nozzles on the ED9, a tuning knob on the IE80, etc.
The sound on the ZSA is exceptional. The sound feels open and airy due to the vents on the back. Soundstage is wide, as well. The ZSA is a bright-sounding earphone. Highs are sharp and crisp, however, if you use the small ear tips included with the ZSA, highs may become harsh and sibilant. Personally I use the medium ear tips that came with the KZ ED9, but I may swap them out eventually. Even with medium ear tips, the highs are almost harsh. Borderline, in fact, but you'll only notice the harshness with small ear tips.
The vocals are sharp and clear as well. This is a bright sounding earphone in general, which is not a bad thing at all.
The bass is punchy and quick -- not fit for bassheads, but with an equalizer it becomes stronger but it does remain punchy. Bass is not deep on the ZSA.
The ZSA is a small earphone. It fits right into your ear. It's important to get a good seal, to experience the full range of sound on whichever earphone you're using. I have tried using the KZ foam tips on the ZSA and I personally didn't like them much, but anyone is welcome to try experimenting. The ZSA sits well in your ear, allowing you to listen to music for hours without discomfort.
Noise isolation on the ZSA is good but not perfect. Since these are semi-open-back earphones, you'll hear a bit of outside noise, and others will hear what you're listening to if you listen to music on high volumes. The ZSA focuses more on bright, crisp sound than isolating noise. It's a worthy trade-off.
The ZSA is well designed with no manufacturing flaws. Build quality is great, it's made of strong aluminum and is exceptionally well crafted.
Sound quality is very good on the ZSA. Sound is bright and clear, with punchy bass. Highs can be sibilant and harsh if used with smaller ear tips.
Comfort: The ZSA is comfortable with all the ear tips I've tried. Surprisingly, the small ear tips provided a good fit for me, although they were a bit loose and didn't seal properly, and the highs became harsh and sibilant while using them.
Noise isolation is decent, but not as good as on the ES3, for example. Keeping the volume at moderate levels will ensure acceptable noise isolation.
Overall, I'd rate the ZSA 8.3/10. If you're looking for a finely crafted earphone with great, bright sound and punchy bass, then the ZSA is for you.