Moondrop Variations Review 2024

Moondrop is a unique brand that has brought many great IEMs to the market for just under $550. With models at nearly every price point, Moondrop has earned quite a reputation in the audiophile world.

Moondrop Variations Summary

Moondrop variations

The Moondrop Variations are fantastic budget IEMs. Finding another IEM at this price with the same type of bass response would be difficult, especially considering how clear and detailed the rest of the tones are.

This is a unique IEM that packs a powerful punch with full-bodied sound and an accurate, wide image.

These tribrid IEMs are valued for money and are sure to provide many hours of engaging listening even if there is no need to release Moondrop Variations 2 IEM.

Overall, if you want more bass and better imaging and staging at the expense of tonal naturalness, the Moondrop Variations will serve you better.

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Moondrop Variations Review

Moondrop Variations Review


The Variations have a similar fit to the Blessing 2/Dusk, boasting a large shell and nozzle. The nozzle diameter of Variations is 6.5mm, the same as Dusk.

They may be uncomfortable for people with smaller ear canals, so it’s important to consider this before purchasing.

Despite its large size, the Variations’ shell is lightweight and ergonomic. It has a round shape and seems comfortable enough to use for up to 3 hours.

Variations has a charcoal translucent resin shell and a metal faceplate with a hash print and the word “Variations” printed on it.

I find the Variation’s understated design attractive, but others may find it a bit boring depending on their preferences.

Moondrop Variations Frequency Response: Tuning

This frequency response of the variation was obtained using Crinacle’s graph comparison tool. The dotted line is the Harman target.

The frequency response of the variations follows the Harman curve almost exactly up to 3 kHz. After that, there is a downward trend with the highest treble peak at 17khz.

This is a very well-tuned pair of IEMs. The tuning is pleasant and inoffensive, but some may find the mids and lows a bit sparse and the treble a bit harsh.


For the bass region, the Variations case is unique. This refers to the way the bass is tuned differently than other IEMs. The variant’s bass response includes plenty of sub-bass, but the mid-bass is distant and shy.

Most IEMs either emphasize the mids more or almost flood them into the lower mids, but the Variation has a noticeable low end and a nice dip after 200Hz, rising again after 500-600Hz.

However, I won’t complain, as the prominence of the sub-bass across the entire bass range is incredibly cinematic. The bass response has a subwoofer quality without feeling sloppy or loose. Rather, it gets deeper.

The mid-bass has a presence in the mix but can seem hollow or unnatural due to its muted and light tone, while the sub-bass provides solid resonance and punch while maintaining good texture and body in the sub-bass region.

However, the overall response is not bad because the sub-bass texture, detailed quality, and balanced tuning compensate for this.

Although clean and controlled, the overall bass had the character of a subwoofer, with amazing texture and detail, but the mid-bass was suppressed and muted.

moondrop variations frequency response


The Variations’ midrange tuning was well executed, with a bit of regression in the lower midrange. Male vocals can sound somewhat dark depending on the mix. While the overall timbre/tonality is pleasant.


The highs are clear and well-extended, and the timbre is improved over the Blessing 2 lineup. The cymbals can sound a little brittle at times and I wish they had a bit more sparkle and airiness to them.

Aside from these minor issues, the Variations offer a good overall treble response.


The variations have a pleasant, clean tone. The vocals sound natural and the sub-bass is very organic and textured. Cymbals can sound a little brittle on some tracks, but overall treble response is decent.

Tip rolling has a significant impact on the listening experience. Try foam tips for comfortable, fatigue-free presentations.

I thought this would be ideal for commuting and work scenarios, but this pairing may be a little too comfortable and lacking in stimulation.

Silicone tips provide brighter, more exciting listening. A tighter bore adds harshness to the treble, so I chose a wider bore.

This removes any harshness and makes the treble sound smoother. This is the pairing I recommend based on my experience.

moondrop variations 2


The dynamics of the Variations are surprisingly good for their price range. Queen is one of my go-to artists for testing dynamics, and Variations handles his music well.

It can reproduce subtle volume changes in quieter passages and extend larger, more explosive changes between verses and choruses to good effect. Variations perform overwhelmingly in this area.

Variants may be sensitive to DAC pairing. Depending on your DAC, the midrange can feel dry and cymbals can sound brittle. Switching to a warmer neutral DAC can make Variations sound richer and more organic.

Regardless of DAC pairing, the Variations tend to have sparse mids and lows. There is also a subtle rawness that permeates the sound.

The raw feel is suitable for some genres, such as rock, and less suitable for delicate and nuanced music. The S8 sounds a bit softer in comparison.

Technical achievements

Moondrop Variations Summary

In terms of technical performance, the Variations far exceed my expectations thanks to a fantastic soundstage, clear imaging, and excellent separation compared to competing IEMs in this price range.

Both clarity and detail retrieval are excellent. It’s fantastic that the notes are played quickly and accurately.


The variations have a fantastic sense of air and presence, and the holographic stage is quite large and expansive.

In my opinion, they are stickier and sharper than other IEMs in this price range, so the imaging is sharper and the shape is better. Plus the separation is amazing.

The notes are clear and it’s easy to identify exactly where the sound is coming from. Every component sounds different and has plenty of room to breathe.

Speed and Resolution​

The variations are not particularly outstanding, but they captured my attention by presenting the attack and decay of notes at a very fast clip.

Detail retrieval is excellent for the price, with details being crisp, clear, and rich, demonstrating the IEM’s excellent resolution.

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The Variations offer exceptionally clean and versatile listening, with excellent tuning and excellent quality sub-bass.

If you can only afford a pair of IEMs for around $520, the Moondrop Variations is a solid all-round choice.

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