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Multi-IEM Review - 321 IEMs compared (NarMoo S1 added 09/04/14 p. 966) - Page 749

post #11221 of 14599

Hey Joker,

 

First of all, great work you've done in this thread and on your own site reviewing so many different IEMs. If you don't mind, I'd like to ask you for some advice.

 

I currently own the Shure SE530. Have owned these for about 4 years now. I'm anything but an audio expert and lack the vocabulary to accurately describe how they sound to me. I do like how they sound, though. I listen to various styles of music of which not all of them neatly fit into a specific category. But I can really enjoy Pink Floyd / David Gilmour, the guitar solos can give me goosebumps at times when listening through the SE530s. Or when listening to the song Spies by Coldplay (from their first Parachutes album), the opening guitar riff sounds really great and when the vocals kick in it's really something to behold. In addition to all that, the queer vocals with the mildly depressing tunes from Radiohead can also give me shivers at times when listening to them through the SE530s.

 

I also listen to a lot of electronic music though, such as for instance Underworld, Kruder & Dorfmeister, Tosca and Thievery Corporation. And other than that, depending on my mood I might put on some reggae, hip-hop, ambient, Hans Zimmer soundtracks, etc.

 

I usually only listen to FLAC and use an iPod classic modded with Rockbox firmware as my main listening source. Don't use any headphone amps as I feel like the Shure doesn't really need it. I have the EQ slightly V-shaped as I overall prefer a somewhat warmer sound (I'm not a basshead, but I do appreciate a nice full bass).

 

So after 4 years I feel like it's time to try something else. I'm looking in the € 400 / $ 500 price range. I'm wondering if there are IEMs out there that will retain the goodness of the SE530, yet add more other stuff as well, such as perhaps more detail, more instrumental separation, a wider soundstage (the SE530s sometimes do sound as if the music is right in the center of my head) and maybe even more/better bass? I'm not necessarily a treble head and the rolled-off treble everyone talks about has never really bothered me. But honestly, the SE530s were my first high-end IEM purchase, before that it was always low-budget stuff so the SE530 is also my only point of reference and I don't really know what I might be missing out on :)

 

Based on what I've read in this thread I've come up with Westone 4R, Earsonics SM64, UE900, Audeo PFE232, J Phonic K2 SP, 1964 Ears and perhaps other ones I haven't seen. I'm just not really sure how they compare to the SE530 and which ones I'd actually like. And here in the Netherlands most stores don't allow you to return IEMs once you've used them so it's not like I can try them all out myself :(

 

So can you perhaps give me a recommendation? I would greatly appreciate that.

post #11222 of 14599
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by SittesJoe View Post

My only concern is that I do not like the 90 degree jack, the cable gets really easily broken. I listen music from my htc one x with jack plug on it`s top, and put it in my pocket.Using that with a 90 degree jack is just a cable killer!

 

Do you might have any other recommendations around 60 usd with a comfortable shell (possibly not plastic), linear jack, ideal for the above mentioned music, mainly rock?

 

Hmm... most higher-end earphones these days have an L-plug. One that comes to mind is the Astrotec AM-800. It's got a straight plug and a wood-and-metal construction. Sounds good, too. 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Towwers View Post

Hi Joker!

 

Is it true that the Vsonic GR07 MK2 sounds better and more balanced than the Westone 4? 

 

I would agree the GR07 (I don't have the MK2) competes with the Westone 4 but saying that it sounds better is probably overstating it. If we're talking purely about balance, the GR07 has an advantage, being the flatter of the two earphones, but whether it's "better", or even as good, will come down to who you ask. Personally, I feel that both of these earphones make concessions but those of the GR07 are greater. For example, the treble peaks of the GR07 might be a dealbreaker for some listeners while the Westone 4 may sound a little boring, but not downright offensive. 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by starfly View Post

Hey Joker,

 

First of all, great work you've done in this thread and on your own site reviewing so many different IEMs. If you don't mind, I'd like to ask you for some advice.

 

I currently own the Shure SE530. Have owned these for about 4 years now. I'm anything but an audio expert and lack the vocabulary to accurately describe how they sound to me. I do like how they sound, though. I listen to various styles of music of which not all of them neatly fit into a specific category. But I can really enjoy Pink Floyd / David Gilmour, the guitar solos can give me goosebumps at times when listening through the SE530s. Or when listening to the song Spies by Coldplay (from their first Parachutes album), the opening guitar riff sounds really great and when the vocals kick in it's really something to behold. In addition to all that, the queer vocals with the mildly depressing tunes from Radiohead can also give me shivers at times when listening to them through the SE530s.

 

I also listen to a lot of electronic music though, such as for instance Underworld, Kruder & Dorfmeister, Tosca and Thievery Corporation. And other than that, depending on my mood I might put on some reggae, hip-hop, ambient, Hans Zimmer soundtracks, etc.

 

I usually only listen to FLAC and use an iPod classic modded with Rockbox firmware as my main listening source. Don't use any headphone amps as I feel like the Shure doesn't really need it. I have the EQ slightly V-shaped as I overall prefer a somewhat warmer sound (I'm not a basshead, but I do appreciate a nice full bass).

 

So after 4 years I feel like it's time to try something else. I'm looking in the € 400 / $ 500 price range. I'm wondering if there are IEMs out there that will retain the goodness of the SE530, yet add more other stuff as well, such as perhaps more detail, more instrumental separation, a wider soundstage (the SE530s sometimes do sound as if the music is right in the center of my head) and maybe even more/better bass? I'm not necessarily a treble head and the rolled-off treble everyone talks about has never really bothered me. But honestly, the SE530s were my first high-end IEM purchase, before that it was always low-budget stuff so the SE530 is also my only point of reference and I don't really know what I might be missing out on :)

 

Based on what I've read in this thread I've come up with Westone 4R, Earsonics SM64, UE900, Audeo PFE232, J Phonic K2 SP, 1964 Ears and perhaps other ones I haven't seen. I'm just not really sure how they compare to the SE530 and which ones I'd actually like. And here in the Netherlands most stores don't allow you to return IEMs once you've used them so it's not like I can try them all out myself :(

 

So can you perhaps give me a recommendation? I would greatly appreciate that.


As far as I know the K2 SP is currently only available in Japan and the PFE 232 has been discontinued recently. You can probably still find a pair but I don't think its sound will work for you. The UE900 is nice but doesn't have any more bass than the SE530 and might not have the midrange presence you are used to.

 

The W4 and SM64 would be better options. However, my pick would be the 1964-V3. It'll retain the rich mids of your Shures but add more bass and treble presence for a livelier, more exciting sound. It also has a more out-of-the-head presentation than most universal-fit earphones including the SE530. The V3 would be a larger change from your Shures than going to the SM64/W4 and isn't the 'safe choice' per se, but it should be easier to justify spending $450+ on.

post #11223 of 14599

Can't wait to read your JH13 review (whenever it comes).  I've had it for approx. two months.. and I'm completely stunned by it.  I never thought it would happen, but I've practically lost all interest in (buying any more) IEMs.  I still plan on hearing many.. but buying.. why?  The JH13 does it all for me.

 

As you said in the IF shootout, I find it incredibly difficult to find any real faults with its sound.  When I'm not using the JH13, my ears are spoiled by the HD800 (most of the time).. I'm not exaggerating when I say that it feels like I'm making very few, if any, real concessions when moving from the Senn flagship to the JHA flagship.  Yes, the HD800 has an ungodly soundstage.. but the JH13's stage is no slouch.. it smokes any other IEM's (and many headphones') soundstage I've heard.  In many ways, it's a more practical investment than the HD800 cause the JH13 doesn't require quite the outlay on upstream gear (to get the most out of it) as the JH13 does.  It's that impressive (to me).

 

I've been very happy with most every IEM I've owned.. but this might be the first time I can say I'm truly, honestly, 100% satisfied.


Edited by FlySweep - 8/16/13 at 1:26am
post #11224 of 14599
hi

I want to buy some pair of high end headphones(300-500$).I almost lesson to pop,trance,and even rock geners.can you tell me which in ear I must buy? one problem that I have is that I dont know that which company has shiping to my country(iran-in middle east).can you help me please?(senheizer Ie 8 and maybe Ie80 can be found here:) )

best regards
Edited by head-fi lover - 8/16/13 at 2:49am
post #11225 of 14599
Quote:
Originally Posted by ljokerl View Post

 

As far as I know the K2 SP is currently only available in Japan and the PFE 232 has been discontinued recently. You can probably still find a pair but I don't think its sound will work for you. The UE900 is nice but doesn't have any more bass than the SE530 and might not have the midrange presence you are used to.

 

The W4 and SM64 would be better options. However, my pick would be the 1964-V3. It'll retain the rich mids of your Shures but add more bass and treble presence for a livelier, more exciting sound. It also has a more out-of-the-head presentation than most universal-fit earphones including the SE530. The V3 would be a larger change from your Shures than going to the SM64/W4 and isn't the 'safe choice' per se, but it should be easier to justify spending $450+ on.

 

Joker, thanks for your reply. I'll look into if it's possible to easily obtain the 1964-V3 here in the Netherlands. If you were to recommend a universal IEM, what would you recommend? Also, are you familiar with the Fischer Amp IEMs? If so, what are your thoughts on those?

post #11226 of 14599
Quote:
Originally Posted by FlySweep View Post

Can't wait to read your JH13 review (whenever it comes).  I've had it for approx. two months.. and I'm completely stunned by it.  I never thought it would happen, but I've practically lost all interest in (buying any more) IEMs.  I still plan on hearing many.. but buying.. why?  The JH13 does it all for me.

 

As you said in the IF shootout, I find it incredibly difficult to find any real faults with its sound.  When I'm not using the JH13, my ears are spoiled by the HD800 (most of the time).. I'm not exaggerating when I say that it feels like I'm making very few, if any, real concessions when moving from the Senn flagship to the JHA flagship.  Yes, the HD800 has an ungodly soundstage.. but the JH13's stage is no slouch.. it smokes any other IEM's (and many headphones') soundstage I've heard.  In many ways, it's a more practical investment than the HD800 cause the JH13 doesn't require quite the outlay on upstream gear (to get the most out of it) as the JH13 does.  It's that impressive (to me).

 

I've been very happy with most every IEM I've owned.. but this might be the first time I can say I'm truly, honestly, 100% satisfied.

Don't worry, the 1P2 will top it.   Just let me know first when your 13's are up for sale!

post #11227 of 14599

Joker, I have been toying around with a few IEMs and was hoping you can steer me in the right direction from your vast experience. I have some Shure 215s but I always long for more detail. So I purchased a set of Ety HF5s and liked them but missed my bass. So I sold those. Now I am trying the Brainwavz B2s. Again I love their detail but miss my bass. I probably like the Etys a bit more than the B2s actually. They seem a bit more natural sounding to my ear. Even so, I am looking for something that gives me all the detail and high end presence of the latter 2 IEMs with some bass weight. It doesn't have to be as thick as the Shures and I don't want it to bleed into the mids but definitely more than I am hearing from the 5s or B2s. As a side note, I do like to use Complys or Shure Olives as my preferred tips. I love isolation for travel and planes. I am not going to put price restrictions but I would like to find that bang for the buck under $200. Thanks. EA

post #11228 of 14599

Well Joker, your review single-handedly convinced me to get a pair of UM Miracles. This is funny because I actually decided on this pair over 2 years ago as my first CIEM but then changed my mind and went with multiple high end universals. Recently decided to try CIEM and was looking at the top tiers like the JH16 and 8.a. I wanted to avoid having to ship to and from China so decided on a pair of JH16. There was a pair on the B/S forum but it didn't quite work out. Then I did a little more research and actually decided that the JH16 had too much bass for my liking. Then a pair of UM Miracles popped up on the B/S forum. This peaked my interest as I have stated before, I had previously picked this pair but decided last minute to stick to universals. After seeing the thread, I did a bit more research and I swear this must have been the thread that made me picked the Miracles 2 years ago. The description/review made it sound like the perfect CIEM for me. Well I bit the bullet and have an appointment with the audiologist scheduled. Will be getting my impressions and sending them for a remold next week. I knew my headfi journey will eventually lead me to customs. It took 7 years, which to be honest, is longer than I would have expected myself to hold out for. Anyways, I've always wanted customs and can't wait to get these in my ear!

post #11229 of 14599

Hey Joker I got those PNY Midtowns today. Holy cow, $17 well spent!

They're nicely warm sounding, much nicer than I was expecting, and the single button mic works really well too!

 

I'm surprised these aren't a bigger deal, they're not exactly new releases are they?

 

Thanks for the tip!

post #11230 of 14599
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by FlySweep View Post

Can't wait to read your JH13 review (whenever it comes).  I've had it for approx. two months.. and I'm completely stunned by it.  I never thought it would happen, but I've practically lost all interest in (buying any more) IEMs.  I still plan on hearing many.. but buying.. why?  The JH13 does it all for me.

 

As you said in the IF shootout, I find it incredibly difficult to find any real faults with its sound.  When I'm not using the JH13, my ears are spoiled by the HD800 (most of the time).. I'm not exaggerating when I say that it feels like I'm making very few, if any, real concessions when moving from the Senn flagship to the JHA flagship.  Yes, the HD800 has an ungodly soundstage.. but the JH13's stage is no slouch.. it smokes any other IEM's (and many headphones') soundstage I've heard.  In many ways, it's a more practical investment than the HD800 cause the JH13 doesn't require quite the outlay on upstream gear (to get the most out of it) as the JH13 does.  It's that impressive (to me).

 

I've been very happy with most every IEM I've owned.. but this might be the first time I can say I'm truly, honestly, 100% satisfied.

 

That definitely mirrors my feelings about it I was almost annoyed when I first got my hands on it – you usually expect the big-brand sets to be good but ultimately not better – and definitely not better value – than the “underdogs”. In this case, however, I simply can’t find much fault at all ksc75smile.gif.

 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by head-fi lover View Post

hi

I want to buy some pair of high end headphones(300-500$).I almost lesson to pop,trance,and even rock geners.can you tell me which in ear I must buy? one problem that I have is that I dont know that which company has shiping to my country(iran-in middle east).can you help me please?(senheizer Ie 8 and maybe Ie80 can be found here:) )

best regards

 

I guess it’ll really depend on what’s available to you. IMO you don’t have to spend $300 to get IE8 (I haven’t heard the IE80) – level performance these days. You can just go for the $150 Yamaha EPH-100 (which may or may not be available to you) instead. Coincidentally, the EPH-100 sounds pretty darn great with pop and trance so I would definitely recommend. If you are limited to specific models, however, you may want to figure out which ones those are and post the list here so we can help you find the best of those options.

 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by starfly View Post

 

Joker, thanks for your reply. I'll look into if it's possible to easily obtain the 1964-V3 here in the Netherlands. If you were to recommend a universal IEM, what would you recommend? Also, are you familiar with the Fischer Amp IEMs? If so, what are your thoughts on those?

 

Probably the SM64 if you don’t mind a less neutral sound. It is fun, though, with that big bass and large presentation.

I’ve never heard a Fischer Amps product.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by awtryau89 View Post

Joker, I have been toying around with a few IEMs and was hoping you can steer me in the right direction from your vast experience. I have some Shure 215s but I always long for more detail. So I purchased a set of Ety HF5s and liked them but missed my bass. So I sold those. Now I am trying the Brainwavz B2s. Again I love their detail but miss my bass. I probably like the Etys a bit more than the B2s actually. They seem a bit more natural sounding to my ear. Even so, I am looking for something that gives me all the detail and high end presence of the latter 2 IEMs with some bass weight. It doesn't have to be as thick as the Shures and I don't want it to bleed into the mids but definitely more than I am hearing from the 5s or B2s. As a side note, I do like to use Complys or Shure Olives as my preferred tips. I love isolation for travel and planes. I am not going to put price restrictions but I would like to find that bang for the buck under $200. Thanks. EA

 

There are many options that have various amounts of enhanced bass (compared to an HF or B2). To stay relatively neutral, you would probably want a GR07/GR07BE or Philips Fidelio S1/S2, though. Bass-wise I would rank them:

 

GR07 < Fidelio S1 =< Fidelio S2 < GR07BE

 

They all have more bass than the B2/HF5 so they should fit your requirements there.
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by mc21 View Post

Well Joker, your review single-handedly convinced me to get a pair of UM Miracles. This is funny because I actually decided on this pair over 2 years ago as my first CIEM but then changed my mind and went with multiple high end universals. Recently decided to try CIEM and was looking at the top tiers like the JH16 and 8.a. I wanted to avoid having to ship to and from China so decided on a pair of JH16. There was a pair on the B/S forum but it didn't quite work out. Then I did a little more research and actually decided that the JH16 had too much bass for my liking. Then a pair of UM Miracles popped up on the B/S forum. This peaked my interest as I have stated before, I had previously picked this pair but decided last minute to stick to universals. After seeing the thread, I did a bit more research and I swear this must have been the thread that made me picked the Miracles 2 years ago. The description/review made it sound like the perfect CIEM for me. Well I bit the bullet and have an appointment with the audiologist scheduled. Will be getting my impressions and sending them for a remold next week. I knew my headfi journey will eventually lead me to customs. It took 7 years, which to be honest, is longer than I would have expected myself to hold out for. Anyways, I've always wanted customs and can't wait to get these in my ear!

 

That's a lot of build-up for a pair of Miracles! I've never tried the JH16 but the Miracle has way less bass than my Heir 8.A and is more to my liking. I hope the remold sounds as good as my unit does!

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by dnullify View Post

Hey Joker I got those PNY Midtowns today. Holy cow, $17 well spent!

They're nicely warm sounding, much nicer than I was expecting, and the single button mic works really well too!

 

I'm surprised these aren't a bigger deal, they're not exactly new releases are they?

 

Thanks for the tip!

 

Good stuff!

 

They came out a year and a half ago IIRC. Noone bothered to check them out, I guess. I am guilty of the same - they ended up sitting in a box for months before I gave them a try. 

 

It's been a bit confusing because they originally cost about $25-30, then the MSRP shot up to $45, and now they can be found for <$20. 

 

I decided to go for the Steelseries Flux first (another budget in-ear without an audiophile brand behind it that I thought sounded surprisingly good for the price) but will make time to review the PNY afterwards. 

post #11231 of 14599
Quote:
Originally Posted by FlySweep View Post

Can't wait to read your JH13 review (whenever it comes).  I've had it for approx. two months.. and I'm completely
stunned
by it.  I never thought it would happen, but I've practically lost all interest in (buying any more) IEMs.  I still plan on hearing many.. but buying.. why?  The JH13 does it all for me.


As you said in the IF shootout, I find it incredibly difficult to find any real faults with its sound.  When I'm not using the JH13, my ears are spoiled by the HD800 (most of the time).. I'm not exaggerating when I say that it feels like I'm making very few, if any, real concessions when moving from the Senn flagship to the JHA flagship.  Yes, the HD800 has an ungodly soundstage.. but the JH13's stage is no slouch.. it smokes any other IEM's (and many headphones') soundstage I've heard.  In many ways, it's a more practical investment than the HD800 cause the JH13 doesn't require quite the outlay on upstream gear (to get the most out of it) as the JH13 does.  It's that impressive (to me).


I've been very happy with most every IEM I've owned.. but this might be the first time I can say I'm truly, honestly, 100% satisfied.
I hear that. I picked up the jh13 a month ago and love it. Thanks to Joker and the other reviewers for pushing me over the tipping point. It is the first headphone I've had that does it all. Amazing isolation & sound. The sound reminds me of the SM3 but with better extension & soundstage. The sound is almost the ideal for me (fitear 334 organic presentation still bests it but it has poor isolation). The jh13 is more neutral than the TG334 but feels less transparent and lacks the visceral bass. That being said, they compete well for ear time.
post #11232 of 14599
Translation of above: the jh13 is awesome.
post #11233 of 14599
Quote:
Originally Posted by ljokerl View Post

Good stuff!

 

They came out a year and a half ago IIRC. Noone bothered to check them out, I guess. I am guilty of the same - they ended up sitting in a box for months before I gave them a try. 

 

It's been a bit confusing because they originally cost about $25-30, then the MSRP shot up to $45, and now they can be found for <$20. 

 

I decided to go for the Steelseries Flux first (another budget in-ear without an audiophile brand behind it that I thought sounded surprisingly good for the price) but will make time to review the PNY afterwards. 

I'm rather blown away at $17. Weirdly enough, i'm enjoying them more out of my amp than my iphone. I'm liking them a lot more than anything i've purchased in this price range in the past - although i suspect i will eventually have to get some M1HC, but i don't think those are available at the same price as the midtowns. I'm seriously thinking about trying the uptowns as well.

post #11234 of 14599
Quote:
Originally Posted by ljokerl View Post

 

That's a lot of build-up for a pair of Miracles! I've never tried the JH16 but the Miracle has way less bass than my Heir 8.A and is more to my liking. I hope the remold sounds as good as my unit does!

Maybe I missed it but could you compare the Miracle to the 8.a? Just a quick overview, no need to waste your time with a thorough description. I was only wondering because on paper, the 8.a actually appealed to me more but I couldn't justify the extra ~$400. Thanks!

post #11235 of 14599
Hey Joker,

I know you probably get it a lot, but I just wanted to thank you for all the hard work you put into your reviews and on HF in general. I feel it is very helpful & informative to newcomers like me and those with more experience alike.

I saw on your Buyer's Guide that you were going to review the VC1000 and VSD1/1S next. I was wondering if you had an idea of when you are going to review the SHE3580(90) and the S1/S2 in your priority of your upcoming to-be-reviewed list. If not, it's cool.

Also, I was curious if you had read or even heard anything about the new dynamic Astrotec AM-700...? I'm in the US and there are a few foreign websites that have some manufacturer material on them using Google Translate. The only place that has them right now is MP4 Nation that I can find. At $47 they are between the AM-90 and AM-800 in price($7 more and $1 less than the latter). I really like my AM-90 and it's build quality/comfort. The design on both of them looks great in my opinion. That cable is so nice! I like me some good bass--as they are marketed--with good clarity as well. I was thinking about ordering them and seeing what they're like. Do you think they'll be of good value? And I wonder how they compare to the two previously mentioned Astrotecs...

Here's a visual:

Edited by Ap616 - 8/16/13 at 10:31pm
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