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Bassy isolating IEM options - SE530 has too much hiss :(

post #1 of 13
Thread Starter 
I have a pair of SE210s that I generally like, but I wish I had more oomph out of them (or at least a mid cut). That isn't an option with the iPhone, so I'm looking for a low-cost IEM with more low end, but not v-moda stupid low end. Somewhere between the se210 and a DT-770 would work great - something that can do Massive Attack justice.


Sadly, while nice-sounding the SE530s just hissed too much out of my iPhone to be bearable. I suppose I'm now thinking in the $100 range, but could perhaps be persuaded to go higher.
post #2 of 13
Get a better source!

Too bad the Shure E500's didn't pair up well. I guess there might be some
impedance mismatch.
post #3 of 13
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by s0n1c6l1ss View Post
Get a better source!

Too bad the Shure E500's didn't pair up well. I guess there might be some
impedance mismatch.
I'm sure that is part of it, though they supposedly have an impedance of 36 ohms. The sensitivity of 119 db might have something to do with it, too.
post #4 of 13
Check the threads for the Future Sonics Atrio M5s/M8s. Really deep, un-muddy bass without sacrificing highs and mids. I mentioned in a thread yesterday how among the many styles of music I listen to, I listen to Massive Attack, Brian Eno, Portishead, etc. on an iPod when traveling -- very bass-intensive artists -- and even on an iPod Nano, the fullness of the bassy sound comes through well using the Atrios. Certainly worth reading up on, as a baseline (no pun intended), if nothing else.

Over $100, but you should find them worth it.

Then there are canal phones (less isolating) such as Mylarones and Denon to consider, among others.
post #5 of 13
Buy or make an impedance adapter, something similar to the P-to-S adapter from Etymotic. Should be able to reduce the hiss for your player.
post #6 of 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by azncookiecutter View Post
Buy or make an impedance adapter, something similar to the P-to-S adapter from Etymotic. Should be able to reduce the hiss for your player.
X2 i think this would be just perfect for what you need. With my iPod 5.5g they don't hiss that much so i am sure that adding some impedance would regulate
post #7 of 13
IEMs don't hiss, the source does!
post #8 of 13
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by ILikeMusic View Post
IEMs don't hiss, the source does!
That may be, but the SE530's go before the iPhone does.

I wish I knew why they made the things with so much sensitivity in the first place - who needs more than ~110 db of sensitivity in an IEM?
post #9 of 13
use the included volume attenuator. Turn it up a little and it helps cut down on the hiss.
post #10 of 13
I get alot less hiss when using an iPhone line out adapter

Edt; make that no hiss, I just tried.
post #11 of 13
Thread Starter 
I'd rather not dangle yet more widgets between my ears and my phone - I'm already using the Shure MPA.


I think I'll just go back to dynamics.
post #12 of 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by ph0rk View Post
That may be, but the SE530's go before the iPhone does.

I wish I knew why they made the things with so much sensitivity in the first place - who needs more than ~110 db of sensitivity in an IEM?
The more sensitive phones are the more headroom they will have with a given amp. If a source has too much output it's better to be able to simply turn it down (and maybe get a cleaner signal to boot) vs. have to run the amp wide open because the phones aren't sensitive enough. Sensitivity is a good thing, the only downside is that it does require a high-quality source.

But I wasn't trying to suggest that you ditch the iPhone, that's obviously not gonna happen. Do the SE530 come with an attenuator like the E500 used to? If so you can use that to pad down the output of the iPhone and turn up the volume to compensate... that should help reduce/eliminate the hiss.
post #13 of 13
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by ILikeMusic View Post
The more sensitive phones are the more headroom they will have with a given amp. If a source has too much output it's better to be able to simply turn it down (and maybe get a cleaner signal to boot) vs. have to run the amp wide open because the phones aren't sensitive enough. Sensitivity is a good thing, the only downside is that it does require a high-quality source.

But I wasn't trying to suggest that you ditch the iPhone, that's obviously not gonna happen. Do the SE530 come with an attenuator like the E500 used to? If so you can use that to pad down the output of the iPhone and turn up the volume to compensate... that should help reduce/eliminate the hiss.
They do, but it is a bulky resistor volume control rather than a set (and svelte) adapter like the UE plug or ety cable. It is quite cheap looking and feeling compared to the rest of the accessories - the se530 jack doesn't even fit in it all the way, exposing about 2mm of the plug

I don't really think the iPhone is going to push the 530's to their full potential anyway - or enough of their potential to make them worth the cost premium over the se210's.

It is kind of a pain, but sometimes you drink the kool-aid, and sometimes the kool-aid drinks you.
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