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Etmotic ER4P alternatives

post #1 of 24
Thread Starter 
Howdy folks! Am hoping to get suggestions for alternatives to Etymotic ER4P. Unfortunately, my brother-in-law's dog ate my Etys.

Will see if they can be repaired. However, this is a great opportunity to get some input from folks and to try out some new gear.

Background: am a long time headphone enthusiast. Main music preferences are guitar based music... blues, rock, alt metal (e.g., Joe Bonamassa, Dream Theater, Porcupine Tree, Riverside, etc.). Source for most listening at this point is mainly via iPod +/- portable amp (Fixup SuperMini). Usual headphone preference is Etymotic ER4. When amped, I add the adapter to make it the ER4S.

I LOVE the Ety sound! Am a clarity junkie. The detail they provide is simply amazing. I love the isolation. I don't experience much discomfort using the standard Ety tips... (e.g., can last an entire cross country flight without a problem).

However, like a lot of folks here, I'm interested in trying out other options. And, there are a lot of new IEMs that have come out in the past several years that I have not had a chance to hear.

Have tried Future Sonic Atrios in the past, but didn't totally dig the sound, (yes, even after extensive burn in).

Suggestions for IEMs that provide gobs o' detail, are readily driven by portable DAP, that do a good job of blocking sound would be very much appreciated! Budget is < $300.

Thanks in advance!
Bruce
post #2 of 24
Hmm, have a look at the Panasonic HJE900s, they're garnering plenty of hype.
post #3 of 24
You might have a look at the plethera of great reviews for the Head-Direct/HIFIMan RE0. I haven't heard the E4s, but many people here feel the RE0 equals the E4s in clarity and detail, and less than half the price, thanks to their continued $79 USD sale. I love the balance, detail AND smoothness, esp the exquisitely extended and smooth highs. And since they are dynamic, after about 100 hours or so the bass is fully developed and very deep when required -- not quite the impact that basshead-types want, but sufficient.

But probably not dog-chew proof, either!!
post #4 of 24
I would suggest trying out the AT CK10's. They're somewhat similar to the Ety sound signature, and yet just a bit smoother across the board. They isolate fairly well (but not as well as the ER4) and the cable has no microphonics. If you enjoy clarity in the headstage, these are definitely worth a listen.
post #5 of 24
Thread Starter 
Thanks for the fast responses! Have been looking at some of the above recs and am intrigued by the "value" of the RE0 (yes, I'm a typical Head-Fi-er and am mainly motivated by SQ, but I still have to deal with family issues, so $79 sounds like a very good deal!!!). That being said, while looking at Head Direct, noticed the RE252. Anyone know if this is really a step up from the RE0??? Or, just different??

Thanks again!
Bruce
post #6 of 24
Westone 2 is a great successor to ER4P. See my review on W2 First Impressions thread.
post #7 of 24
I don't think they're necessarily better, just more balanced.
post #8 of 24
But they are also the "brightest" IEM I have ever heard that had zero siblance and this feeds right into Etymotic fan's wants alonf with more bass
post #9 of 24
Check out the R252's review thread here:http://www.head-fi.org/forums/f103/r...efined-457639/

as for some other's impressions, |joker| said it best in his amazing Multi-IEM review thread - 38 earphones compared (RE252, PFE, new Meelec M9 added 01/15/10)

Quote:
Originally Posted by |joker|
Value (7.5/10) – The RE252 is an excellent choice for anyone who tried the RE0 and thought “Hey, I would enjoy these more if they were more restrained in the treble, more lush in the mids, had more bass, and were reshelled into mutant gummy bears”. I really think they are near the top of the upgrade path for anyone who craves a wide and balanced sound, a path that stems from enjoyment of earphones such as the Soundmagic PL30 and Cyclone PR1 Pro. But it is also here that the RE252’s main problem lies – this signature is definitely not for everyone. While I do feel that the RE252s sound fuller and more engaging than the RE0 with dense rock and metal tracks that rely on spatial positioning and require at least some bass, I can’t help but feel that I would still choose an (amped) RE0 as an all-around earphone with its crisp treble and effortless dynamics. This certainly has a lot to do with the innovative housing of the IEM, which makes the fit too restrictive for my tastes and results in other small quirks. I do think that some people will find their perfect sound in the RE252 and certainly applaud Head-Direct for trying something new, but for me an IEM is something that should, aside from sounding good, make my life easier on all fronts and the traditional approach just seems to do that better.

Pros: Impossibly balanced sound, top-tier detail and clarity
Cons: Cannot be worn over-the-ear, potential fit issues for some, can be microphonic, mediocre isolation, absolute dust magnets
Also, check out ClieOS's Default Multiple IEM Shootout v.3 - the R252's are at the end of V.3

I can't speak on the R252, but the clarity of the RE0 just keeps getting better for me. Also, with more listening, the bass has been a little more "present". In my personal opinion, the bass response of the RE0 is a little over exaggerated. But, to each his own.

Best of luck with your decision!
post #10 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by Spyro View Post
But they are also the "brightest" IEM I have ever heard that had zero siblance and this feeds right into Etymotic fan's wants alonf with more bass
Sorry, that was in response to RE252 vs RE0, you posted just before me
post #11 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by BDA_ABAT View Post
Thanks for the fast responses! Have been looking at some of the above recs and am intrigued by the "value" of the RE0 (yes, I'm a typical Head-Fi-er and am mainly motivated by SQ, but I still have to deal with family issues, so $79 sounds like a very good deal!!!). That being said, while looking at Head Direct, noticed the RE252. Anyone know if this is really a step up from the RE0??? Or, just different??

Thanks again!
Bruce
are they a step up? well yes but i can readily see why someone may still prefer the RE-0. the 0 is v like the etys you had the 252 has all that detail and more but somehow is creamy smooth. its rather strange.
post #12 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by BDA_ABAT View Post
I LOVE the Ety sound! Am a clarity junkie. The detail they provide is simply amazing. I love the isolation. I don't experience much discomfort using the standard Ety tips... (e.g., can last an entire cross country flight without a problem).
i vote for getting them repaired/fixed.
post #13 of 24
Thread Starter 
dcpoor: yep, have already contacted Etymotic about repair. They provide terrific support! This would be an additional purchase.

Bruce
post #14 of 24
If you're getting them repaired or replaced, why don't you look at something completely different for your additional purchase? Wide, bassy sound.
post #15 of 24
Thread Starter 
bcpk: Excellent question. The real answer is that I enjoy the overall Ety sound. I'm really into detail. If there was another headphone option that offered similar detail PLUS clear, accurate, visceral bass, would definitely consider it... especially if it didn't require an amp when using a portable source and was offered at a price point that would not make my better half go completely bonkers.

That being said, I was intrigued enough by the comments here and the sale price to order a set of RE0.

Thanks for the advice folks!
Bruce
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