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Need Help in Picking First IEMs...

post #1 of 33
Thread Starter 
Hey there guys, first post here

So I'm in the market for my first IEMs for my birthday...I was perusing the forums and went pretty deep into them looking for anything that covered what I was looking for, but I couldn't really find anything.

Anyway, I was looking into the UE Super.fi 5's (might look into the vi's to use with my iPhone, but not a necessity) and they seem to be the ones that I want...but since this is my first time that I'm getting into the higher end of headphones, I would like some advice in picking out a set, since I want my first attempt to be a good solid step.

So what do you guys think? Super.fi 5's good for a first go? My budget is around (but want to keep it under) $200.

I was also looking at the Etymotic ER6's and even the HF2 set...so I'm really in a pickle.

Thanks in advance

-Deus

EDIT: Oh, forgot to add this bit: I have some Bose In-Ear earphones right now...have had them for about 2 years or so...and have never really liked them, but I actually like the fit. I've tried the Shure E2C's but no matter what I did, I could never get a comfortable fit, well, they would never fit right is what I should say.
post #2 of 33
What is your music preference?
post #3 of 33
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by forsberg View Post
What is your music preference?
Haha, ooh, that is a hard one...but metal probably...rock is probably a more general term, but I really like anything. Just not jazz, country...and most rap. Some rap is ok, but eh...

Hope that narrows it down.
post #4 of 33
HF2, Sleek Audio SA6, or Super.fi 5, IMO.
post #5 of 33
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Taikero View Post
HF2, Sleek Audio SA6, or Super.fi 5, IMO.
Is that the order of how you would rank them as well?

The reason that I'm really leaning toward the Super.fi 5's are because I can still wear them the traditional way, with the cables down...I can probably change that and get used to wearing them over the ear, but it's not as "convenient" i guess...
post #6 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by DeusInvictus7 View Post
Haha, ooh, that is a hard one...but metal probably...rock is probably a more general term, but I really like anything. Just not jazz, country...and most rap. Some rap is ok, but eh...

Hope that narrows it down.

I don't have any experience with the new super.fi 5's, but take a look at the super.fi 5 pro's as well. They are older, but dual driver instead of single driver. I used 5 pro's for 3 years before upgrading, and they were great. Nice bass, great soundstage, overall a very fun pair of IEMs to listen to.

The biggest flaw with UE is their comfort. The old ones stick out of your ears and I've heard the tips that come with the new ones are not comfortable in the ear. Also, their cable is too stiff.

However if comfort is your #1 priority, go for Westone UM1 or UM2. UM1 will be $100 under your budget but won't sound as good as UE SF 5s. UM2 will be $100 over your budget but will beat anything in its price range in sound. Their cables are top quality stuff.
post #7 of 33
An important question is not only what kind of music, but what kind of sound signature do you like? If you enjoyed the amount of bass on your boses, and are looking at something bassy, then go with atrio m5. If you didn't like the bass and want something lighter in the low end and more detailed then go with ety er4. If you like something in between the two, then go with the Head direct RE0 or sleek SA6, I would say. Personally between the two, I would go with the RE0, as I have had nothing but good experiences with my RE2s, and the RE0s have received generally great reviews.
post #8 of 33
Thread Starter 
I actually do like the bass on my Boses, but it was a little too much. Maybe something with more highs. A more balanced sound signature I guess you can say.

I was taking a look at the SA6's just now, and I really like the customization aspect of it. How well does that work?
post #9 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by DeusInvictus7 View Post
I actually do like the bass on my Boses, but it was a little too much. Maybe something with more highs. A more balanced sound signature I guess you can say.

I was taking a look at the SA6's just now, and I really like the customization aspect of it. How well does that work?
For a first time IEM buyer, I'd stay with the mainstream IEM companies (Shure, UE, Westone, Etymotic).

A lot of reviews here are very flavor of the month. Currently names like NuForce, Sleek Audio, Head-Direct, Klipsch, etc... are getting a lot of attention because they're new and people here like to test new things, kinda like how MylarOne Crossroads or V-Moda Vibes were so hot back in the day, but hardly anyone talks about them anymore.

The four companies I've mentioned are the only ones who's really been there since day one and still gets attention here daily. That to me says a lot about their quality.
post #10 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by DeusInvictus7 View Post
Is that the order of how you would rank them as well?

The reason that I'm really leaning toward the Super.fi 5's are because I can still wear them the traditional way, with the cables down...I can probably change that and get used to wearing them over the ear, but it's not as "convenient" i guess...
You can wear all three of the ones I mentioned without going over the ear.

Also, I would put the HF2 above the Super.fi 5, although I think the HF2 and the SA6 would be about neck-and-neck. The SA6 is from what I have heard "fragile" and/or "dainty", although the customization and ($200 more) wireless option is nice.

The RE0 isn't a bad option either, but I don't quite know where it stands against the HF2 and SA6. I'd say it probably beats the Super.fi 5 as well though, just from what I've read about it.
post #11 of 33
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by forsberg View Post
For a first time IEM buyer, I'd stay with the mainstream IEM companies (Shure, UE, Westone, Etymotic).
Yeah I was thinking that too. So basically for me, its down to the UE's Super.fi 5 and 5vi or Ety's hf2, hf5 or ER6 sets...still a long way to go.

Any comparisons between any of those at all?
post #12 of 33
The HF5 and HF2 have the same driver AFAIK, just that the HF2 has the mic/iPhone controls.

The HF2/5 is considered something of a "super" ER6i.

If you want to what the HF2/5 sounds like, read http://www.head-fi.org/forums/f103/e...1/#post5145969

In addition, a bit into the review is a link to a comparison between the HF5 and the ER4P/S and the ER6i.
post #13 of 33
Thread Starter 
Awesome, thank you for that link. Reading it now.

EDIT: Ok, I just read the review, and I'm still not sure, you were saying in the review that the hf5's sound stage wasn't as big, or that it depends on how deep you put them in your ears correct? I kind of want to stay away from shoving things deep into my ears, so I'm not sure about that. The UE's look like they don't have to be as deep. Idk, it might be the style of the UE's thats attracting me, and I'm pretty sure whatever I get is going to impress me lots. Thanks again for that review, appreciate it
post #14 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by DeusInvictus7 View Post
Awesome, thank you for that link. Reading it now.

EDIT: Ok, I just read the review, and I'm still not sure, you were saying in the review that the hf5's sound stage wasn't as big, or that it depends on how deep you put them in your ears correct? I kind of want to stay away from shoving things deep into my ears, so I'm not sure about that. The UE's look like they don't have to be as deep. Idk, it might be the style of the UE's thats attracting me, and I'm pretty sure whatever I get is going to impress me lots. Thanks again for that review, appreciate it
Not so much how deeply you insert, but more importantly how tight the seal is. If it's like a vacuum, you're going to get the best sound. It's also better to *not* insert deeply, as the deeper you go, the smaller the sound stage will get.

e.g. Get the shallowest good seal possible, and you'll have the best combination of sound quality, bass presence, and sound stage.
post #15 of 33
Thread Starter 
Awesome, thanks for the info. I'll keep that in mind.
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