CanJam SoCal 2023 Impressions

CanJam SoCal 2023 Impressions

With every CanJam comes the expectations of forming new friendships, listening to new gear, and eagerly waiting to explain what I think of each and every product we have available on our table. CanJam SoCal not only met each and every expectation, but exceeded them in every possible way. Even though it’d be impossible to highlight every listening session, and every person I had the pleasure of meeting and talking with, I figured this article would be the best possible way to give a small glimpse of CanJam SoCal 2023 through my lens. 

The Community Aspect 

A listener shows off a set of in ear monitors that he's about to listen to for the first time, from Bloom Audio gallery

Quite possibly the most underrated part of CanJam is its focus on giving everyone deeper access into the hobby we love and share. It's a space that we can all enjoy together, through both our gear and insight into a hobby that may not be as easily accessible to one person as it is to the other. CanJam offers the opportunity to meet new people, listen to new things - and gives us the occasion to talk about it amongst each other. It would’ve felt wrong to not include my thoughts on just how special it was to see this community together once again, and it was truly unique this time around for me, and I’m sure for others. 

The Gear

A wide selection of in ear monitors on a table for display and to listen to, from the Bloom Audio gallery

While spending all day talking and listening would be ideal, I actually have to do some work at CanJam. However, I do still go into each event with a certain few products in mind that I’d love to listen to and learn more about. CanJam SoCal had a unique offering of new products that I may not usually get the chance to listen to, so I’m very grateful to each brand and dealer at the show. Listed below are my honest thoughts and opinions on each product I listened to: 

Vision Ears VE10

Vision Ears VE10 on display with a black felt patter behind the in ear monitor, from the Bloom Audio gallery

What quickly became my most anticipated IEM of the year upon hearing of its imminent release, Vision Ears VE10 was first on my list for CanJam 2023 SoCal. Upon my listening, I quickly enjoyed the bold vocals that set the stage for the extended and rich treble that had proper synergy with the fun and thumping low end. It also boasts all the standards we have come to expect from Vision Ears - great staging and imaging, excellent overall resolution, and an overall very pleasing tonality. What came as the biggest surprise was the shell. I found it to be Vision Ears’ most accommodating fit and size. I've heard from numerous people that their shells are too big/don’t fit in their ears. If that was you, or even if you’ve had a good experience with fit and size, VE10 should be on your radar as an IEM to look out for in the next few months. 

Campfire Audio Chromatic Series 

Campfire Audio Chromatic Series display and sign that displays images of all new in ear monitors, from the Bloom Audio gallery

While we’ve had the Ponderosa and Supermoon in the office for quite some time, I got the chance to listen to Cascara and Bonneville while at Campfires booth. The Cascara aims at a more “entry level” IEM option at $499, and it definitely sways its tuning towards the more consumer friendly side of things. With a more forward and relaxed sound signature, bass and warmth are apparent quickly upon listening to Cascara. The treble was mostly smoothed out, and a copious amount of low end made me bounce my head a bit - though Cascara wasn’t my key take away from what Campfire's new lineup had to offer, the Bonneville was. Bonneville, in my short impressions, thoroughly impressed me with its sharp treble, and natural presentation of the music, all complimented by a rumbling low end. Overall, Bonneville left me, and a lot of others that I asked, impressed by its combination of accuracy and blend of fun.

Subtonic Storm 

Subtonic Storm booth at CanJam SoCal 2023 with the employees assisting customers in hearing the in ear monitor, from the Bloom Audio gallery

Any chance given to write about Storm, I will. Hearing Storm at CanJam NYC should disqualify it from this list, but having the team there fully reminded me that this is an IEM I simply need to listen to any chance I can. Storm is fast, accurate, and complete across the board. From the craftsmanship, to its top shelf sonic ability, Storm isn’t something that can be read about, it simply needs to be experienced. Unless you’re one of the lucky few that can shell out $5,200, CanJam may be your best bet for experiencing one of the top contenders for best IEM in the world. 

Flip Ears 

Flip Ears Artha in ear monitor on display at CanJam SoCal 2023, from the Bloom Audio gallery

I would be lying if I said I came into CanJam 2023 SoCal knowing the brand Flip Ears from the Philippines, but I surely didn’t forget who they were when I left. I got the chance to demo Aurora, Axl, and Artha and left the table desiring a certain piece from each IEM. From Aurora’s energetic and lively sound presentation with zing up top and rumble down low, to Arthas different sound presentation with each flip of its switches, and finishing off with Axl’s impressive and highly resolving sound - Flip Ears certainly has an IEM for each type of listener, and you’re better off knowing the name now rather than later. 

Elysian Annihilator

Elysian Annihilator on display at CanJam SoCal 2023, from the Bloom Audio gallery

What needs to be said that hasn’t already been said? Elysian Annihilator hails as one of the most impressive and highly praised IEMs in the world currently, and certainly captured the attention of most in attendance - including my own. Annihilator, as the name suggests, is aggressive and forward with its sonic approach. It leaves you with a sound signature that doesn’t feel out of place in the slightest, with a very balanced tuning across the board that does just about everything right. While I always prefer big and bold vocals, it wouldn’t be necessarily fair to say Annihilator lacks in that area - its mere personal preference. Other than that, bass and the midrange are present and lively, giving a coherent and pleasing tonality. When listening to Annihilator, it's you and the music, and the symphony that's being played is worth listening to. 

Heddphone 2

Heddphone 2 leaning on a DAC/amp and on display at CanJam SoCal 2023, from the Bloom Audio gallery

When I first entered the audiophile space, the first Heddphone (with the headband revision) landed in my lap, and I wasn’t too tuned in with my ear to appreciate what it brought to the table. This time around, I was determined to seek after what made the Heddphone garnish so much praise, and the Heddphone 2 did not disappoint. With surprisingly more punch in the lowend than I anticipated, Heddphone 2 doesn’t fall into the category of “technically capable, but a boring listening,” it shows a great balance of all the technical chops to be sonically accurate, while also adding a musicality and warmth to the music, keeping enjoyment of the music at its forefront objective. Although I still found the headband to create a touch of fatigue and a bit of a hot spot on my head, Heddphone 2 is a worthy successor to the original, and a headphone with great character. 

Symphonium Audio Meteor 

Symphonium Audio Meteor on display at CanJam SoCal 2023, from the Bloom Audio gallery

Meteor flew a bit under my radar for most of the show, but when I finally got a listen, I was pleasantly surprised due to its price to performance. Meteor is comfortable, fun, and balanced. With a more safe tuning, Meteor is an IEM you can have in for long amounts of time due to both its sound signature, as well as its comfort. I greatly enjoyed my time with Meteor, and think it's a great mid range option for most listeners. 


While this article gives just a taste for the numerous products that I was fortunate enough to listen to, I hope it represents something bigger than that. I hope it encapsulates the great stage that's set for us to come together as a community, and simply enjoy the love of music together. To each and every one of you that stopped by the Bloom booth to recommend a product, sit down and talk to us, or take the time to ask a bit more about who we are as a person and or the company - thank you! To the Head-Fi team, thank you for the long hours of work you do to put these events together, it truly does mean a lot to everyone involved! I hope to see you all in Dallas, and any other CanJam after that.