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Etymotic ER4S/P info please?

post #1 of 12
Thread Starter 
I'm confused about some details of the ER4S and ER4P

I have classic ER4S red & blue and have also ordered the current model ER4S (I play in a duo so we need 2 pairs for live performance)

The ER4P is supposed to have more bass than the ER4S, but at the same time people seem to be saying that the only difference between them is the resistors housed in the cable pod. This is supported by the fact that Ety sell a ER4P to ER4S converter.

So how can the P have more bass? sorry but adding a resistor doesn't reduce the bass, unless the amp responds differently to the different impedance in which case its not a true difference in the phones, but an impedance matching issue. So which is true?

If there is no difference between S and P except for the added resistors, why are they advertised with different frequency response? Surely the difference in the frequency response in that case would totally depend on which amp is used.

Also how do you remove the cables? what recabling options are there?

Is anyone wearing ER4s with the cable up and over the ear? pics? Has anyone recabled them to make this easier?

Is anyone else here using them for live performance of music? ie as a stage monitor?

post #2 of 12
Thread Starter 
Oh, and did the ER4s come with different cables at different times? which is preferred and why?

(woot! - 50th post look out for me selling all the other stuff i bought to try out!)
post #3 of 12
post #4 of 12
Originally Posted by Tom Drinkwater View Post
I'm confused about some details of the ER4S and ER4P

So how can the P have more bass? sorry but adding a resistor doesn't reduce the bass,
Actually it does as the above link explains. Keep in mind the increase in bass for ER4P is very subtle. It's not like you're adding a subwoofer. Some people may not even notice. Most people still think ER4P is still very bass deficient.
post #5 of 12
Yes, the er4p is just warmer than the er4s. Get an adapter and try. I thimk I actually like more the p than the s. But neither will kick you in the stomach.
post #6 of 12
Yes the ER4 have come with at least 3 different types of cables over the 6-7 years I have had them. The cable from the Y join and down to the jack are as far as I know the same but the cable leading from the Y join and to the speaker pods started out as a very microphonic single cable. Then came a cable with 2 wires interwoven that reduced microphonics. Latest there has been a third version that I have not personally seen. Also they have changed to all black plugs on the ear pieces from the original blue/red.

Over the ears is possible with any of the cables and reduces microphonics a lot but they still stick out a lot.

APureSound makes a recable for them the is very niece but also fairly expensive. Others have at times also made cables.

Here is a photo of min in ear and over the ear with the APureSound cable
post #7 of 12
Does anybody use the XIN adapters (not the cables) for ER4P? Are they as good as the P-to-S cable?

I'm talking about the link posted above by JFJ...

I have store credit in Amazon. Do you think I can obtain from there something similar to the original P-to-S?
post #8 of 12
Thread Starter 
so the red/blue parts just pull out? is much force required?

that 90 deg cable looks good for wearing over the ear.

that article is helpful, but it still doesn't say why reducing the impedance of the phones increases the bass, can anyone explain that in terms of inductance or capacitance or impedance mismatch or some such actual physical reason?

thanks all for the info!
post #9 of 12
Yes the red/blue or black parts just pull out with a fair but not unduely big force. Be warned though that they are not really designed for this use so don't do it to often as the connectors in the pods will get loose over time.

As for what the lower resistance in the P model does, this is what Etymotics has to say about it

post #10 of 12
Here is the post you want, written by Etymotic engineer d_wilson:

"Adding resistance to the ER-4P lowers the sensitivity and changes the frequency response. Adding resistance to the ER-4S, ER-4B, or ER-6 doesn't change their frequency response. Explaining why might also teach any competitors too much."

post #11 of 12
Thread Starter 
hmm, I certainly understand that there are a couple of ways that a higher impedance load can improve the performance of an amp.

Just don't see how it will inherently change the response of the phone itself regardless of source.

I guess its related to the inductance or capacitance of the driver itself. I would surmise that in fact adding resistance to the ER4S does change the response, but that the effect tails off as more resistance is added so that by the time you are already at 100R adding more makes too little a difference to notice. I'm guessing though.

The driver forms a circuit with the amp, its hard to say that any change to that circuit affects just the amp or just the phone, the whole thing is one system.

The secrecy in this industry is a bit tiresome, I'm sure any competent engineer could explain it without needing to ask ety, I guess he's saying the competitors' engineers are not competent. hehe
post #12 of 12
Yes. From our point of view as users, all that matters is knowing that the er4p is warmer and bassier and less detailed. Er4s is amazingly detailed and with lean bass (but it is there, precise, not punchy) as far as it is used with an amplifier. The common mistake however is to say that the P needs no amp. Er4p also benefits greatly from amplification. The lower resistance means you get plenty of volume from DAPs, but the bass is weak and the details are lost in the music. An amp awakens the er4p to a great and warm headphone. Not as analytical as the S, but very enjoyable.
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