V-MODA Forza Metallo Review (Page 2 of 4)
Page 2 - Physical Look - Hardware
The V-MODA Forza Metallo is available in two color schemes, which is Gunblack and Rose Gold. Our particular example is the former. For those who like a bit of visual complexity for a more aggressive presence, the Forza Metallo has you covered. Its detailed fit and finish is a work of art. It has a very contemporary and clean appearance, where V-MODA's logo is cleanly integrated at the back with the rest of the lines, as you can see in our photo above. If you prefer something a little younger looking, take a look at the V-MODA Forza. If you want to customize it, you can get 3D custom handcrafted caps from the company. When it comes to quality, V-MODA claims they have done tests on the MIL-STD-810G standard, and survives "sweat, weather resistant, high and low temperatures, humidity and UV exposure tests". Now, I have done none of these tests on my particular pair, but based on what I can see and feel, these claims are quite believable to say the least.
Meanwhile, the V-MODA Forza Metallo earphones are available in two variants -- one designed for Apple devices and one for Android devices. The only difference is the three-button remote. I own an iPhone 6, so I naturally went for the Apple version. The buttons provide decent tactile feedback. All models come with a high sensitivity microphone to go with your smartphone, since it is hard to find anyone nowadays listening to music on a dedicated digital audio player exclusively, haha. Its microphone is located on cable that leads to the right side, with the remote button behind it.
The V-MODA Forza Metallo are very lightweight at 14g, thanks to the way the it is manufactured. The V-MODA Forza Metallo is designed to go straight into your ears, but you can use the included sport fins or earhooks to wrap it around your ears as well. I would like to commend V-MODA for making such lightweight earphones for improved comfort, as well as being compact in size, so it still fits well for most people, including me. In the end, I went with the small sized silicone ear sleeves after trying out the medium eartips for the best fit. As with all in-ear monitors, users with different sized ears will be happy to know that the company has included not three, but four different sized sleeves.
The V-MODA Forza Metallo earphones connect to your audio output device via a forty-five degree 3.5mm 24k gold plated connector. I personally prefer angled connectors like these, because they are inherently easier to disconnect from a source being easier to grip. The plug is also rated for over 60,000 bends for maximum durability. The Kevlar reinforced DiamondBack cable promises not only unmatched strength and durability, but also tangle-proof. V-MODA products has always been good to me in terms of durability, and being an owner of the Zn with the same cable, I can definitely attest to its tangle-proof property. I also like the fact the cable is about 114cm long, with 81cm from the plug to the Y split, which should be a good fit for most users.
A closer look at V-MODA's Forza Metallo earbuds. As per its name, the Forza Metallo features CNC forged aircraft-grade metal housing. The unit's serial number can be found on the Y-connector by a label. The metal housing was cast mainly for aesthetics and feel, and not necessary for its acoustical properties. Based on our tests, it sounds identical to the regular Forza, which we will discuss on the next page. As aforementioned, the company's logo can be found at the back, while the "L" and "R" markers can be found at the bottom. Its drivers are 5.8mm neodymium dynamic-type with a rated frequency response of 20Hz to 40kHz. These specifications are, with respect to the treble, quite a bit beyond the hearing range of any normal human being of around 20kHz.
The rated sensitivity is 99dB @ 1kHz 1mW with an impedance of 14 ohms. Actually, its impedance is not listed on V-MODA's website, but I think it is safe to assume it is the same as the vanilla Forza version. Its low impedance will work very well with unamplified sources such as your smartphone. Like many modern in-ear monitors, the drivers aim directly into your ear for a more direct and transparent sound reproduction characteristic. At the same time, it makes the earphones much easier to clean in the long run too. The sleeves assist the aim into the user's ear canals, and since these earphones are designed for a closed configuration, the V-MODA Forza Metallo are made for passive noise canceling. V-MODA has a name for everything, and their sleeves are no exception. It is called BLISS 3.0, which stands for Bass Level Isolating Soft Silicone. As aforementioned, they come in four sizes best fit and sound performance to the end user.
Based on my experience, the microphonics characteristics of the V-MODA Forza Metallo are pretty similar to the Zn. During usage, like all in-ear monitors, rustling noise is inevitable -- and with the Forza Metallo, it is no exception. The Y-split junction filters out a good amount of mechanical vibrations half way down the cable, but the upper segment is considerably audible. The included sport earhooks and fins can be used to reduce the effect of this problem.
With all this in mind, how will it perform? As always, we have the entire Page 3 dedicated to presenting our auditioning results.
1. Introduction, Packaging, Specifications
2. Physical Look - Hardware
3. Subjective Audio Analysis