Originally Posted by tstarn06
I don't believe anyone would use the word equivalent comparing the Triples to the UE10. Just my hunch.
I didn't say the Triple Fi 10 was "equivalent" to the UE10. I said the $400 Triple Fi's were the "universal" equivalent to the UE10, which is UE's classic $900 custom IEM. There's no question that a custom-fit IEM, build from a mold, taken from an audiologist, is superior to a universal IEM, using off-the-shelf tips that have to be roughly matched to the ear of the consumer. But if you're looking for the best match for the UE10, short of going "custom," the Triple Fi 10 is it.
You know who might agree? Ultimate Ears. On their website. UE created four series of IEMs: MetroFi, Super-Fi, Triple-Fi and Custom. The first three series are universal; the last is custom. Of the Triple Fi, this is what UE says: "The closest sonic experience to custom personal monitors." Within the Triple Fi series, there are only two lines: Triple Fi 10 Pro and Triple Fi 10 Vi, the only difference between them being that the latter has an in-line microphone button and control button.
Cross-reference the description of the Triple Fi 10 with the UE 10 (sans the obvious difference that one is custom-fit while the other is universal) and see what you get:UE 10:
Housed within the custom shell are 3 individual speakers and an integrated passive crossover circuit board that directs the low-end frequencies to a dedicated speaker for bass, the mid-range frequencies to a speaker for the vocals and the high frequencies to a speaker dedicated for treble.
Triple Fi 10
The sonic equivalent of sitting in the world's best recording studio. How much clearer can we get?
- Three drivers: Low, mid and high frequencies are directed to their designated speaker to give you a sonically rich experience.
Shape of things.
- Audio filters: Shaping the sound for the closest experience to custom personal monitors available.
I'm not making this stuff up. Why do you think the number schemes match between the Custom series and the second and third series of the universals? Is it a coincidence that the UE4 Pro is a single-driver design like the SuperFi 4? Is it a coincidence that the UE 5 Pro matches the SuperFi Pro? Look at what UE says about the SuperFi Pro on its website: "The SuperFi 5pro has the same sonic signature as our custom personal monitors." Is any of this starting to gel yet?
Call me crazy but when UE says it's UE7 Pro "is based on a 2-way crossover design with a single high driver and dual low drivers," maybe that's an enhanced version of the Ultimate Ears 700, the top model in the SuperFi series, which uses "a custom-tuned dual-armature layout that separates the broad frequency response – 10 Hz to 16.5 kHz – into two high-fidelity channels per ear." Should it be a coincidence, then, that the next step up, among the universals, is the (dare I say it?) "equivalent" step up within the custom series? And what is that next step? What's the next number after two? Can you say "three?" Or as UE puts it, in describing the specifications of the UE 10 Pro: "3 proprietary precision balanced armatures with an integrated passive crossover circuit board." In basic English, the UE 10 Pro has a three-way design: a woofer, a midrange and a tweeter. What does the Triple Fi 10 have? "Three drivers: Low, mid and high frequencies are directed to their designated speaker to give you a sonically rich experience."
I never said the $400 Triple Fi 10 was as good as the UE 10 Pro. What I said was that it was the "equivalent" among the universals. That said, what is the major difference between the two? It's the customization. One uses a custom-fit molding, designed from specs taken from an audiologist. The other uses off-the-shelf tips. If you look at the price differences between the other match-ups, there's a $370 difference between the UE 4 Pro and the SuperFi 4. There's a $350 difference between the UE 5 Pro and the SuperFi 5 Pro. There is a more than $600 difference between UE 7 Pro and the UE 700, but that's the weakest of the match-ups. The price difference between the UE 10 Pro and the SuperFi 10 Pro is $500 - which is greater than the difference between the lower match-ups but less than the difference between the UE 5 Pro and the SuperFi 5 Pro.
If you look at the pattern, inexact as it may be, what do you suppose makes up this difference in price between the models in the Custom Series and their corresponding matches among the SuperFi and TripleFi lines? Isn't it obvious? You're paying for a custom earpiece. It's a relatively expensive difference but, for the world of hi-fi, a relatively small one. The actual drivers are essentially "equivalent." Maybe that's why, when UE introduces the Triple Fi 10, it doesn't say, "This is only half as good as our $900 UE 10." It matches the product copy for the UE 10 Pro - "the most accurate personal monitor available. The sound is studio reference quality" - with the following language: "The sonic equivalent of sitting in the world's best recording studio. How much clearer can we get?"
If you want the equivalent of a UE 10 Pro, while remaining in the price range of the universals, Triple Fi 10 Pro is the right model. I didn't exaggerate my point.