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Are (High-end) Custom IEMs Overrated? - Page 23  

post #331 of 467

Blind tests have found high end violins to be grossly overrated.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by kiteki View Post

 


and with watches, diminishing returns start at $5 when it comes to telling the time =p but it's nice to have a high quality piece of metal with sapphire front on your arm, that you'll find on models in countless magazines.  Someone pointed this out in regards to Final Audio, and I think if they invested heavily in models, sports stars, or famous musicians using Final Audio IEM's in magazines or on TV, it'd work.  Imagine someone like Hilary Hahn with the Piano Forte VIII saying "In music, like with violins, I only listen to the best" etc. 

 

I'd never buy a Lacoste or Gucci IEM if that started, and I like cheap chinese products that are right up there at the ~90% mark of sound-quality, but FA feels a bit more like getting a nice Seiko watch and I think that's what FA is aiming for.

 

 



 

post #332 of 467
Quote:
Originally Posted by kiteki View Post

 


and with watches, diminishing returns start at $5 when it comes to telling the time =p but it's nice to have a high quality piece of metal with sapphire front on your arm, that you'll find on models in countless magazines.  Someone pointed this out in regards to Final Audio, and I think if they invested heavily in models, sports stars, or famous musicians using Final Audio IEM's in magazines or on TV, it'd work.  Imagine someone like Hilary Hahn with the Piano Forte VIII saying "In music, like with violins, I only listen to the best" etc. 

 

I'd never buy a Lacoste or Gucci IEM if that started, and I like cheap chinese products that are right up there at the ~90% mark of sound-quality, but FA feels a bit more like getting a nice Seiko watch and I think that's what FA is aiming for.

 

 


Can you tell me what the IEM equivalent is to a Casio G-Shock because I've had my current watch for about 4 years now and prior to that I haven't had a watch that lasted more than 6 months before busting. That was a pretty **** good way to spend $200, especially since watches cop serious abuse on my wrist.

 

post #333 of 467
Quote:
Originally Posted by kiteki View Post

 


and with watches, diminishing returns start at $5 when it comes to telling the time =p but it's nice to have a high quality piece of metal with sapphire front on your arm, that you'll find on models in countless magazines.  Someone pointed this out in regards to Final Audio, and I think if they invested heavily in models, sports stars, or famous musicians using Final Audio IEM's in magazines or on TV, it'd work.  Imagine someone like Hilary Hahn with the Piano Forte VIII saying "In music, like with violins, I only listen to the best" etc. 

 

I'd never buy a Lacoste or Gucci IEM if that started, and I like cheap chinese products that are right up there at the ~90% mark of sound-quality, but FA feels a bit more like getting a nice Seiko watch and I think that's what FA is aiming for.

 

 


The comparison to watches doesn't really work because fancy expensive watches are jewelry much more than they are time keepers.
 

 

post #334 of 467
Thread Starter 

^  x2

 

Also, unlike customs, a good watch can have a pretty good resale value, and down the road may even be worth (much) more than the initial price paid.

 

If we only talk about time keeping, yes, a $5 watch can perform as well as a much more expensive watch, but when it comes to music reproduction, a pair of $5 earbuds will not sound like a $50-$100 pair of IEMs. And then, of course, with watches (and other luxury items) we don't have the usual 'unpredictable' issues of re-fits, extra shipping, long delivery times, etc., and hoping we will actually enjoy a particular sound signature, not to mention the fact that in many cases we can return a watch - and many other items - we've just bought and get our money back.


Edited by music_4321 - 7/13/11 at 5:20am
post #335 of 467
While I agree that the watch comparison thing is probably a bad idea as a digital watch is perfectly adequate at time keeping, you'll find that most expensive watches, ones absolutely covered in diamonds notwithstanding, are mostly unadorned. You're paying for the complexity of the movement, quality of build, functionality of a mechanism. You're paying for the art of engineering not a bar or diamond encrusted platinum. You're blanket statement just sounds uninformed.
post #336 of 467
Thread Starter 

 

Here's something posted only this morning:
 
"I like my ex600 so much that I would probably have invested in some ex1000 instead of my customs..."
 
I recently A/B'd both EX600 & EX1000 (here are my impressions written over 2 weeks ago) and came to the conclusion the EX600s deliver more or less 90% of the sonic qualities of the EX1000, and consider them "a true top-tier universal IEM, up there with the W4, UM3X, TF10, CK100 & IE8 (the best top-tier IEMs I've heard apart from the EX1000)."
 
The customs the poster is referring to are the 1964-Ts (triple BA drivers), worth $400 + ear impressions, shipping, etc. The EX600 cost $150-$200, and the EX1000 $360-$500.
 
And here's something posted last night:
 
"[The EX600] definitely grab my attention and make me want to listen them more and more. I hope my poor quads don't get relegated to the desk drawer.."
 
The "poor quads" the poster is referring to are the 1964-Qs, worth $525 + ear impressions, shipping, etc.
 
 

Edited by music_4321 - 7/13/11 at 5:57am
post #337 of 467

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by phntmsmshr View Post

Can you tell me what the IEM equivalent is to a Casio G-Shock because I've had my current watch for about 4 years now and prior to that I haven't had a watch that lasted more than 6 months before busting. That was a pretty **** good way to spend $200, especially since watches cop serious abuse on my wrist.

 

 

A-Jays Two

post #338 of 467
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by music_4321 View Post

^  x2=

 

Also, unlike customs, a good watch can have a pretty good resale value, and down the road may even be worth (much) more than the initial price paid.

 

If we only talk about time keeping, yes, a $5 watch can perform as well as a much more expensive watch, but when it comes to music reproduction, a pair of $5 earbuds will not sound like a $50-$100 pair of IEMs. And then, of course, with watches (and other luxury items) we don't have the usual 'unpredictable' issues of re-fits, extra shipping, long delivery times, etc., and hoping we will actually enjoy a particular sound signature, not to mention the fact that in many cases we can return a watch - and many other items - we've just bought and get our money back.


Ok, you are correct about customs, but there are headphones like the Qualia and vintage gear like a Sony D-555 that are worth much more these days than the initial prices people paid for them, and I believe this trend will continue into IEM's and there will be exclusive IEM's worth more down the road and IEM's will cross the border into the fashion and marketing department a la watches.  I'm pretty sure the Piano Forte VIII is sonically overrated, well I hope it is, but it is crossing the realm from music reproduction into a sonic art collector niche of sorts.

 

As for your comparisons of the EX600 to custom IEM's, headfonia.com considered the EX1000 better than the JH16 at high quality jazz and classical recordings, and I've seen one user on head-fi prefer his EX1000 (in technical aspects) to an $800 FAD.
 

If the EX600 is 90% of the EX1000 and the latter are compared to JH16, then yes, I suppose customs are overrated indeed? ;)  Other IEM's I've seen claimed to perform admirably well against customs are the GR07, Sensaphonics J-Phonics (it pretty much is a custom?), and Ety ER-4.

 

I haven't heard any customs myself, so this is just quotation and theory, but I guess the consensus is something like the ~$175 Sony EX600 can perform at 85-90% of a $1000 custom, would you agree with this consensus? I'm sure average_joe wouldn't ;)

 

 

post #339 of 467

Lol...

 


 

Quote:
Originally Posted by average_joe View Post

Status update:

- I have a Sony EX-1000 in hand for evaluation for several days, so I am listening/comparing as much as I can

- I am also trying to make sure I have all the pictures I need and am A/Bing the Beat Audio Rose Supreme and Cronus cables as I need to send them back to their owner. My cable comparison is about 75% complete.

- The SA-12 review is nearing completion

- I did sneak some time to compare the SA-43, JH16, and SE 5-way ksc75smile.gif

- The Anedio D1 DAC is very nice!


 

 

post #340 of 467
Thread Starter 

^ I may be wrong, of course, but I already anticipate average_joe's 'verdict' on the EX1000s. He's already written a few posts on this thread expressing his disagreement with my views, and things didn't go down too well between both of us. Over two weeks ago he already spoke of someone he knows - didn't say who it was, but most likely it was Joker - who had heard the EX1000s and the Miracle. Here's what average_joe wrote then:

 

"I know a Miracle owner that has heard just about every top tier universal and may be loaning me the EX1000 for some time and his take is the same as mine."

 

Average_joe's take, of course, being that customs are not overrated.


Edited by music_4321 - 7/13/11 at 9:42am
post #341 of 467

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by cliffroyroycole View Post

 

And you have not heard any of the Sony EX IEMs or MDR-7550, for that matter. I'd say you should stay away from consensus-building. No such consensus exists.

 


I listen to the EX700 all day every day at the moment, yes I have not heard any customs so have no valid opinion here, but I was probing Music_4321 to say that the EX600 is 90% of all customs as I find that an amusing sentiment.  I am actually quite interested in customs and would buy the Starkey SA-43 if I could afford it, no sweat ;)

 

Just because I say a $5 watch can tell the time perfectly doesn't mean I think $5 IEM's can reproduce sound perfectly, I'm merely theorizing and using analogies to elucidate the truth of sound vs $$, please don't depict all my whimsical iterations in black and white ;)

 

 

post #342 of 467
Quote:
Originally Posted by kiteki View Post

I'm pretty sure the Piano Forte VIII is sonically overrated, ...


AFAIK no one here has even heard, let alone rated them. confused.gif

post #343 of 467
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by kiteki View Post


I listen to the EX700 all day every day at the moment, yes I have not heard any customs so have no valid opinion here, but I was probing Music_4321 to say that the EX600 is 90% of all customs as I find that an amusing sentiment.  I am actually quite interested in customs and would buy the Starkey SA-43 if I could afford it, no sweat ;)

 


I've never said or suggested the EX600 is 90% of all customs or that the EX1000 is 100% of all customs, for that matter. I've, in fact, spoken of the EX1000s relative to my $850 ES3X which, to me, deliver 100% of the SQ my customs provide (both having different sound sigs). Others have spoken of their customs relative to other top-tier universals.

 

Perhaps you should read quite a few more posts on this thread to have a better idea of what I (and others) have said. There are other aspects, apart from SQ differences, that have been discussed, some of which people are/were unaware of, which contribute to my overall view that customs are overrated.

 

And I repeat that I think customs are overrated to the average head-fier, but not to every single person. Much like my EX1000, which I'd not recommend to everybody, customs, in my view, are not for everybody but there are marked differences (already mentioned several times) between an 'overrated' top-tier universal and an overrated custom IEM.

 


Edited by music_4321 - 7/13/11 at 11:31am
post #344 of 467

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by james444 View Post

AFAIK no one here has even heard, let alone rated them. confused.gif


piano-forte-x-viii-series-earphones_nrJyM_58.jpg

 

title06_11a_small.gif

post #345 of 467
I know my Jh16's are night and day better than my Klipsch C3 or ie8, and they fit like a glove, I know I can tell the difference, every instrument every note is perfectly separated, the air and dynamics ete breathtaking, for people who never heard a top of the line custom IEM, I understand trying to justify the high cost of quality customs, so by putting them down is much easier than actually spending money on a pair, I know I will never have to buy a universal IEM again, and if my hard earned dollars itch for another IEM, it will be a custom.
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