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Best isolation?

post #1 of 28
Thread Starter 
Hi all, first post here. I've lurked around here for a couple of weeks reading up on all sorts of interesting things. To some extent, this is a "what should I buy" thread, but I'm principally interested in isolation. If this has been answered, I couldn't find it and offer many apologies.

The bulk of my listening, say 60%, is in high ambient noise environments such as commuter train, motorcycle helmet, sporting events, and so on. About 40% is quiet "at home" listening. While I can certainly appreciate the benefits of a high end set of IEMs, I'm not sure the listening I do merits something at the very high end. You just lose too much when fighting high ambient noise. So with that, I am looking for the the IEM that block the most ambient noise.

I currently have Super.fi 3 pros and Shure E2c. Both seem about equivalent in terms of blocking noise. I prefer the sound of the Super.fi 3, but neither the super.fi 3 or the E2c are comfortable for long periods. By contrast, I've also used the Super.fi 4vi and the Etymotic HF2 (iPhone variant of the ER-4). Of all of them, the Super.fi 4vi was by far the most comfortable, but I found it lacking (seriously at times) in every other category (flimsy, poor isolation, poor sound quality). The HF2 was a good overall compromise, but the mic is so close to your right ear that it doesn't allow you to run the wire over your ear to reduce cable microphoning.

About 75% of my listening is on the iPhone, so earphones with an integrated mic would be nice, but that is secondary to isoloation and comfort. In essence, I'd like something with the best possible isolation combined with the comfort and utility of the Super.fi 4vi. Does such a thingamajig exist? Realistically, how much better does isolation get than something like the e3c, or hf2? Am I dreaming to think I can get noticeably better?
post #2 of 28
There's basically nothing that will beat the isolation of etymotic phones, especially when you pair them with foams. From the somewhat small but mixed selection of IEMs I've used, etys are also the most comfy for me. The mic part, however, ruins that. Did you actually try using the mic with the cable run overear or did you just see it was so far up and not bother? Try it, you may find it works better than youd think.
post #3 of 28
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by TacticalPenguin View Post
Did you actually try using the mic with the cable run overear or did you just see it was so far up and not bother? Try it, you may find it works better than youd think.
Yes, the latter. The mic was at my cheek with it just dangling. I didn't actually try to loop it over my ear because it didn't seem like it would work. I suppose I can give it another try.
post #4 of 28
If you want super isolation, go with the tri-flange tips on the Etys. They'll be the best(for now), until that new "mystery tip" comes out. Plus, depending on your ears, the silicon tips may be more comfortable. I find foam less comfortable than silicon.
post #5 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by nickdawg View Post
If you want super isolation, go with the tri-flange tips on the Etys. They'll be the best(for now), until that new "mystery tip" comes out. Plus, depending on your ears, the silicon tips may be more comfortable. I find foam less comfortable than silicon.
And once that new mystery tip which I'm trying to shut up about comes out, I assure you, etys will unquestionably be isolation kings.



If the mic was at your cheek danging, don't bother with over ear, that's useless. The etys will perfectly fit all your criteria except the mic part. I suppose you could twist it down for when youre talking on the phone and itll be nice and hidden at the bottom of your ear when youre listening to music/killing microphonics.
post #6 of 28
I’m also new to this and am interested in the best isolation possible combined great sound quality and good bass. From what I have read, the Ety’s are lacking in bass. On the Headroom website, their technical measurements indicate that the Shure SE420 have equal isolation to the Ety’s (both much better than the Super.fi 3 pros and Shure E2c mentioned by the OP). See chart:

Products - HeadRoom - Right Between Your Ears

Should I believe that they are equal with isolation?
post #7 of 28
Ive tried many IEMs and the top ones for isolation are, without question, ER6i and ER-4. Personally, you cant go wrong with either in terms of SQ.
post #8 of 28
Etymotics in my experience have the best isolation but they aren't exactly what I want to listen to music with :P
post #9 of 28
Actually, the Westones murder the etys when it comes to isolation. Nothing comes close to the Westones in that area. The Sleeks beat the etys too, but not by a significant margin.
post #10 of 28
I'm pretty shure that graph is etys with triflange and shures with foam. Etys with foams is even better, especially that one that I'm done talking about that doesn't exist.

Also, UM1's isolation from when I used them is about what the triflanges are, maybe a touch more - that one tip is easily a good bit over the triflanges.

And sleeks with biflanges I doubt can come close to triflange or foamed etys - my etys with the small sleek-sized biflanges has relatively poor isolation in comparison to triflanges and the foams.
post #11 of 28
i once tried a um 1 and an er6i at a shop.i didn't notice anything special about isolation when i put in the um 1 but i did for er6i.

When i put it in, it was getting softer( the outside noise) but it still could be driven further into the ear. So i pushed further and further and nothing could be heard.
post #12 of 28
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by TacticalPenguin View Post
I'm pretty shure
ba dump bump~!

Quote:
Originally Posted by TacticalPenguin View Post
especially that one that I'm done talking about that doesn't exist.
I think there's an inside joke here that I don't get.
post #13 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by radvas View Post
ba dump bump~!



I think there's an inside joke here that I don't get.
Meh I'll fill you in, theres a new tip etymotic has been making/has made but hasnt released yet that they sent me when I emailed them asking what kind of tip they think would fit my ear best based on what difficulties I had fitting the triflanges without killing the sound on them. Its isolation is pretty much second to nothing I've ever used before, including every other type of tip etymotic makes for the er6i. They asked that I don't talk about it, so I tried not to, and won't say any more than what I just did/already have.
post #14 of 28
Can you at least say if it is: Silicon, Foam or gel(?)? Just the material, as I'm hoping it's a silicon and not another crappy foam.
post #15 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by nickdawg View Post
Can you at least say if it is: Silicon, Foam or gel(?)? Just the material, as I'm hoping it's a silicon and not another crappy foam.
not exactly a specific one of the above, but don't worry there's nothing like it out at the moment its rather unique
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