After a solid 1 hour listening and playing with: EQ and the use of an Ety P-S adapter I have made some discoveries about myself, my amp and my earphones.
My Amp: for a week I have had the Predator, and whilst I do not think this is a feature of the amp, I notice it takes about 20 mins to hit a sweet spot. This means, as soon as I turn on and go, it sounds mediocre, but after 20 mins it starts to sound really good.
Myself: I have also noticed that my ears have a slight sensitivity toward the higher frequencies, this is less prominent with the ER4Ps, TF10 (with Bass Reducer EQ). The nature of the LiveWires sensitivity and the sheer power of the Predator, give the LiveWires a bit extra, and as mentioned before, when the amp is 'warming up' it usually becomes unbearable at times.
My Earphones: The LiveWires require patience. They will not, and I will challenge this for anyone, sound absolutely perfect straight out of the box. I have found a mix of playing with fits, cable orientation, and burn-in (yes I know) have made differences to me. Whether it was in my mind or not.
So, a day later where do I stand?
I really enjoyed my LiveWires on the bus today, no EQ, with the Pred and 50 ohm cable after my Pred hit that sweet spot. The highs were tamed and beautiful, the bass was nice and full of body, and the mids were wonderful. Delta was just fantastic, and even listening to that of System of a Down, The Killers and Serj Tankian's albums, I found that the mash up of instruments I experienced before was diminished, and replaced with clear, natural and crisp sound instruments, as if each instrument had a purpose in the track.
Whilst still contemplating that in the second round I should have gone for open jaw, requested stems be made longer, I find that I am satisfied (at this point in time) with the product I have got. They look stunning despite the error of leaving the name tag, but they had definitely turned heads on the bus today. I left work with my ER4P today, changed over to LW on the bus, played with EQ and so forth, then found that sweet spot, and finally, 100 days later, experienced what we can call 'the LiveWire effect'.
My advice to those looking to purchase LiveWires: take your time with them. When getting your impressions, chat to your audiologist about them, don't rush any part of the process. Despite having wait times that stem from around 14 days (for those close to the lab), do 30 days for overseas, and upto 100 days like myself, despite $60 taxi rides, incorrect postal addresses, it will be worth it. When you get your LiveWires, as great as it is to expect to be blown away on first hit, don't get that hope high. You ears will have to learn how to deal with these new things in there, your brain will have to understand why you are plugging up your ears, and your ear drums will be subject to a new sound. Let that sink in, play with other aspects of your system, and when you hit that sweet spot, dare I say it, you may experience an eargasm.
To those that have them (especially that of HPA, webbie, filipelli, Kosmic, and any others who provided me with advice and support) - thanks. I feel like I am giving an Oscar speech here, but I really appreciate the patience, advise and support all of you provided through the journey. From what was meant to be a birthday present in January, to a final work of 'Art' (will reference later), it has all been a fun ride.
To LiveWires: John Diles is a great guy, and I will deal with him, despite some communication let downs, and the nature of a businessman, I understand.
But, to Art at LiveWires: thanks for continuing to help me out. The communication set up was fantastic, and the constant customer support I was provided made me a very happy person.
So, where to from here? I am currently subjecting my Predator to nightly burn-ins of 10 hours a night, with some daily use on my commute to work. Tomorrow will be a day I use the LiveWires straight from the iPod's headphone jack, and evaluate the possibility of the LiveWires being my 'go to' earphone when in a rush.
That's all for now, might take some more pics and whatnot, maybe when the Pico comes down we can have some nice 'sexy' pictures of my beautiful toys!