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Newbie has questions on portable/DT rig w/ Red Wine iMod as source - Page 8

post #106 of 111
Thread Starter 
MOVING ON THE IEMS...

Just ordered 3 pairs of Atrios M5s from Road Dog. One goes to my drummer brother-in-law...

First impressions probably next week. Need to set up our Mac Mini and start synchronizing all those iMods and iPods...
post #107 of 111
Thread Starter 
...AND THE ATRIOS HAVE LANDED!

Three shrink-wrapped Atrio M5 boxes arrived promptly from Road Dog in perfect shape. I encourage HeadFi members to ask for quotes for multiple pairs... Great service and pricing. They cater to professional musicians, churches, events, etc.

OK, gotta forward one pair to the family drummer. And my wife is egging me on to start testing.
post #108 of 111
Thread Starter 
AW, SHUCKS...

The more I look at the price of Grado RS-2s, the more I glance sideways at Beyers and AKGs (I'll pass on the Senns if the top end it too rolled off). Frankly, the K701s have received very laudatory reviews from a number of quarters and that included sessions with pop music. I'm just very tempted to get a second pair and declare the great search over.

I know, lazy, lazy...
post #109 of 111

I'm back

Well, it has been a bit since you have posted and I am back from my vacation. Any latest purchases and have you been happy with what you have selected so far? I have been interested in the AKG 701s but I have alot of cans already and am happy with what I have. I like the idea of some customized UE 10 Pros....I have a design in mind for a set but would probably sell off my other IEMs if I did get them. I switch between the Shures and the Etys quite a bit but if it was the best of both worlds then I would probably be content to have just the one set for travel.

I have been pretty much without listening time for the last couple of weeks as I was having some well needed time with the family. Lots of fresh lobster right off the fishing boats in Nova Scotia and just enjoying doing family stuff and being on vacation. Hope that all is well in audiophile land.
post #110 of 111
Thread Starter 
Welcome back... here we're dealing with a kiddie burglary and some vandalism at the house we just leased out and I have to confess we foisted a nano>iBasso>Atrio M5s system on a friend on his way back to Beijing. So my first tests are all centered on the portable rig right now.

The Atrios are definitely very nice earphones. Their bass is deep and not boomy and there is a real sense of scale and presence even straight out of a 1G Shuffle (which has a good amp). I have used the iBasso T2 treble boost switch to counteract an initial sense of the high end being too timid (using the stock mini-to-mini interconnect - I'll soon test using the line out dock as a substitute). Compared to Sennheiser CX300s, the Atrio M5s flesh things out, impart dimension and color, and begin to draw you into an acoustic space which seems to be inhabited by real instruments rather than pleasant synthetic clones. You may not be all the way into the room, but it's like standing by an open door. They don't push sound at you like the little Senns, with the attendant sense of occasional hardening and oversimplifying: instead, they allow something far more complex and dimensional to wash over you (to the extent earphones can do that).

The one clear limitation I need to work on is congestion, the fusing of instrumental voices in loud orchestral passages, the difference between clearly recognizable ingredients and flavors and a soupy equivalent in which they become hard to separate. I suspect this has mostly to do with amplification and interconnects, so the next step is to listen to the same tracks with the improved audio chain: nano>LOD>T2>M5s.

On the other hand, good songs where the balance is more akin to a fashion designer's layering of fabrics and patterns in close proximity, on a much smaller scale, come across as very listenable. It's quite a different proposition from a serious orchestral piece.

So the goal is to remove the congestion with the portable rig. If that is achieved to a good degree, it will be just what we hoped for, with the ability to take in a symphony or an opera on the go without too many distractions. For the size and money, that's frankly very nice!

Regarding the UE-10s, I say go for it. I've read a bit about them lately and it seems many serious reviewers rate them at a level where they pretty much stand on their own. If they are rugged enough to tolerate being used on the go with decent amplification, you may be looking at something quite pleasant: very clean portable sound, and top-of-the-line sound at home out of serious sources and amplification, without switching transducers. You might check on Push To Hear devices you might be able to add to your portable rig, just in case...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Combat Audio View Post
Well, it has been a bit since you have posted and I am back from my vacation. Any latest purchases and have you been happy with what you have selected so far? I have been interested in the AKG 701s but I have alot of cans already and am happy with what I have. I like the idea of some customized UE 10 Pros....I have a design in mind for a set but would probably sell off my other IEMs if I did get them. I switch between the Shures and the Etys quite a bit but if it was the best of both worlds then I would probably be content to have just the one set for travel.

I have been pretty much without listening time for the last couple of weeks as I was having some well needed time with the family. Lots of fresh lobster right off the fishing boats in Nova Scotia and just enjoying doing family stuff and being on vacation. Hope that all is well in audiophile land.
post #111 of 111
Thread Starter 

All connecting and working... thanks to all Headfiers from myself and my wife ;-)

Well Guys,

After many distractions, I finally have all the bits and parts assembled and charged and loaded and I'm delighted to report that both my wife and myself are getting just what we hoped for.

The portable 1g 4GB nano > ALO line out dock connector > iBasso T2 > FS Atrios M5s rigs perform reliably and pleasantly (give or take a few resets on my nano). The Atrios are not too constrained by the signal they get and the resulting sound is unfatiguing (as long as the volume is not too high), warmish (erring on the dark side), and punchy with an acceptable bass foundation that allows low-pitched notes to be heard to some degree. Massed instruments will tend to congeal in loud passages and details are a tad limited and simplified, while the sense of space is a bit cramped. I don't bother listening for a remotely realistic soundstage of course. Overall, just the ticket for on-the-go/casual listening or even enjoying an album before dozing off.

The house-bound 4g 60 GB iMod > ALO cryo mini-to-mini connector > RSA Hornet/SR 71 > AKG 701s rigs are as expected, very enjoyable. A very good sense of bass extension, and a general lifting of the feeling of things being cramped together while fine details are allowed to emerge and are easy to discern. A sense of cleanliness where most of what ought to be there can be heard, a lack of aggressiveness or artificial emphasis, an overall smoothness that makes one want to continue listening into the recording, while taking in the musical message. Just enough power to drive the AKGs to high enough levels. Another level of realism is suggested of course, which lies beyond what the system can deliver, but there is a sense that a good balance has been achieved and one can relax into the music. On the whole, a lively and clean facsimile of the real thing, except for the imaging, with sound objects lodging in the usual odd places in and around one's head.

While we enjoy these little systems, I can now start wondering about the next level. But there's no rush and lots to enjoy -- so thank you, HeadFi, for the excellent advice and great gear!
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