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Earsonics SM2 DLX Dual BA IEM Review and impressions thread - Page 3

post #31 of 52
i am bumping this thread cause i want to know if anyone beside shigzeo got the chance to listen to them or the sm3,they look interesting and maybe one of the best although their pricing is a bit expensive.
post #32 of 52
Quote:
Originally Posted by midoo1990 View Post
i am bumping this thread cause i want to know if anyone beside shigzeo got the chance to listen to them or the sm3,they look interesting and maybe one of the best although their pricing is a bit expensive.
I have them alongside the IE8 and W3. And I've listened to the UM3x, SE420, Custom 3, ER4P, and had a short session with the SE530.

The SM2 are definitely in their class. Their frequency response is "Hi-Fi flat", ie on the warm side of neutral, quite close to the UM3x.

However, the Earsonics sound signature is very different : while the UM3x can be dry at times, the SM2 are ridiculously liquid and sweet, with an euphonic midrange that is not too forward, not too distant (to me the best midrange I've heard to date), sweet and soft bass (its quality depends a lot on source) and airy slightly sparkling trebles (again, their quality depends on source, my Cowon S9 makes their trebles very refined but my iPod touch made them uninteresting). People have described the Earsonics sound as "liquid gold pouring into your ear". However, to me, they had one major flaw : they're slow. That meant that during fast-paced tracks, they had the tendency to become muddy. So while they were very well detailed on slower tracks, they lost to the UM3x and Co on faster ones.

Another weird thing with Earsonics is that people tend to describe their sound as simply "beautiful". In other words, they seem to render everything in a seductive, sexy way. That can be a drawback when the recording is intended to sound very aggressive and ugly.

They're very good (quite fantastic actually) with Jazz for example. And terrible with metal. So it depends on what you listen the most.

BUT Earsonics recently released the SM3. They seem to be massively better than the SM2 and to correct their most major flaws - you might want to look into them because it really seems quite absurd now to save 50 euros and get the SM2. Accordingly they're great with rock because fast and super detailed - but they'll still have that Earsonics sound (that is to say, all but dry ).

PS : Earsonics' IEMs tend to be more source dependent than the other IEMs I've tried. They make a superb pair with the Cowon S9 (their sound signatures complete each others perfectly), much less so with the iPods I've tried. They respond very well to amping.
post #33 of 52
T o the op, thanks for a detailed and intresting review.
post #34 of 52
hmm interesing,i listen to all genres when i am using my potable rig but mainly vocal trance,metal,hiphop and country.guess they are not suitable for these genres as you say they are slow.
the sm3 looks intersting but it is very expensive,i hope someone that have it can chime in..
post #35 of 52
I think they'll do great with vocal trance and hiphop, good with country, and to me not good at all with metal.

The SM3 would be then the only "reasonable" choice in the Earsonics line-up for you, IMHO. They're expensive, but accordingly their price seem very competitive from a euro-zone point of view, and probably still coherent with their performance from a US one.

EDIT : I saw you already have the IE8. I'm not so sure the SM2 would be for you a complete improvement. They'll be better on some of your tracks, worse on others. They'll have far better mids than the IE8 but their bass will not rumble as much (it is softer), which can be both good and bad. Their trebles will sound very different (the IE8 are dry and rather mono-tonic there, but still detailed and well extended, while the SM2 will have airy and soft trebles with very good tone distinction and good but perfectible extension), but none of them is better than the other here, it is more a matter of taste. finally, their frequency response is completely different : the IE8 are V-shaped (in other words, the mids are recessed), while the SM2 are between rigorously flat and slightly bumped in the lower mids.

The SM3 will be however, a complete improvement on the IE8 on all aspects, notwithstanding their different frequency response of course (which again could make you prefer the IE8 even though they'll be technically inferior).
post #36 of 52
To be honest,when it comes to this price range it only depends on preferences and nothing is better than the other.
I have/had three full size headphones in the same price range and nothing is better than the other,each one of them have something unique about them that they excel at and areas where others are better at.
I currently found that I am content with my full size setup and my hd650 is what I prefer and I am looking to sell my d5000 for almost a month now with no success and will get another iem and pico slim and should be content for along time.

Those sm3 are very tempting but very expensive sadly.
post #37 of 52
Thread Starter 
Sold inside the EU, they have VAT attached. Outside the EU, however, they should be 20% cheaper (I think).

The new SM3 is similar - flat, but where the SM2 was hard to drive, the SM3 pretty much keeps the same frequency response from any source. Yes, there will be more distortion and lesser channel separation with certain sources, but you don't need an amp or a great source to correct imbalance or frequency suckouts.

Great earphones, but laid back, similar to the SM2. I would say the SM2 is in a way, more muscly than the SM3.
post #38 of 52
Quote:
Originally Posted by midoo1990 View Post
hmm interesing,i listen to all genres when i am using my potable rig but mainly vocal trance,metal,hiphop and country.guess they are not suitable for these genres as you say they are slow.
the sm3 looks intersting but it is very expensive,i hope someone that have it can chime in..
I dont listen to metal, but I listen to some noise and avant-jazz which can be considered to have a much higher dynamic range than metal while equaling the fast rendering of any metal genre. Saying this, when I had the SM2dlx's listening to these genres was very satisfying and not at all muddy as described in some post above. I think the one that posted this confuses brightness/crispness/sibilance/boom with the word "fast."

I also owned the IE8's and I hated their colored peaks in the boomy bass and bright highs. I would never consider the ie8's in par with the SM2dlx's, the EarSonics are far far a much higher-end and sophisticated iem, not just a fun one like the ie8's.
post #39 of 52
Quote:
Originally Posted by GuyDebord View Post
I dont listen to metal, but I listen to some noise and avant-jazz which can be considered to have a much higher dynamic range than metal while equaling the fast rendering of any metal genre. Saying this, when I had the SM2dlx's listening to these genres was very satisfying and not at all muddy as described in some post above. I think the one that posted this confuses brightness/crispness/sibilance/boom with the word "fast."

I also owned the IE8's and I hated their colored peaks in the boomy bass and bright highs. I would never consider the ie8's in par with the SM2dlx's, the EarSonics are far far a much higher-end and sophisticated iem, not just a fun one like the ie8's.
Do you listen to your IEMs amped ? Because I heard the SM2 improve very well that way, so I'm not surprised at all you did not find them slow in the lower registers - a comment I am not the only one to make on French forums.

(And I do partially agree with you about the IE8, I personally find them exaggerated, but to me they're not technically inferior to the SM2 - at least un-amped and straight out of a Cowon - , it simply is their sound sgnature that's not very Hi-Fi and subtle, but that's a matter of taste)
post #40 of 52
Thread Starter 
The IE8 are infinitely easier to drive than the SM2 - that is that. But they are certainly Hi-Fi. There shouldn't be a distinction, especially at an audiophile board, between earphones of hifi and non-hifi quality. I doubt too many would even know the difference.

The SM2 is a musician's monitor, not a hifi speaker. The IE8 is everything the SM2 isn't: it doesn't isolate, it is hugely contoured; hell, it's even harder to wear than the SM2.

They are both good, but the SM2 is made for professionals. The only problem I see with it is that it tightens up with an amp - which means that some microphones out there won't put enough power into the earpiece meaning some musicians won't hear the way they need to.

The IE8 technically can be driven well from anything. It may gains some accuracy, and lose some distortion, but driven from a Cowon, the only real thing it loses is bass tightness. The SM2 tends to be more of a wild thing.

That said, it is one of the best universal monitors our there despite its need for amps. The problem with it, and by way of analogue, the UM3x, is that despite being a professional monitor, it is all plastic, and definitely not strong in comparison to certain (ck100, ck10) mere audiophile earphones out there.
post #41 of 52
Quote:
Originally Posted by MayaTlab View Post
Do you listen to your IEMs amped ? Because I heard the SM2 improve very well that way, so I'm not surprised at all you did not find them slow in the lower registers - a comment I am not the only one to make on French forums.
Yes, my comment refers to a pair of iQube amped SM2dlx's, which I found to be an amazing match. I wouldnt recommend them unamped.
post #42 of 52

Why interest in SM2 disappeared from HF?

By knowledge I have are on par with the best in its price range .


Edited by pack21 - 2/9/12 at 10:56am
post #43 of 52
Thread Starter 

Necro!

 

Who knows? When they came out, the best mainstream mp3 player didn't play them perfectly without an amp. They are great but hard to drive. Nowadays, any iPod should run them perfectly. I love their dry signature and find them best of in their price range, for sure.

post #44 of 52


Agree with the your last statement, although I owned em3pro right now, but the SM2 presentation is more enjoyable to me

Quote:
Originally Posted by shigzeo View Post

Sold inside the EU, they have VAT attached. Outside the EU, however, they should be 20% cheaper (I think).

The new SM3 is similar - flat, but where the SM2 was hard to drive, the SM3 pretty much keeps the same frequency response from any source. Yes, there will be more distortion and lesser channel separation with certain sources, but you don't need an amp or a great source to correct imbalance or frequency suckouts.

Great earphones, but laid back, similar to the SM2. I would say the SM2 is in a way, more muscly than the SM3.


 

post #45 of 52
Does anyone know if these use the same filter system as the SM3?
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