I promised to post updates on IEMs in my possession that I don't plan to review due to lack of time. Most of these are simply unexciting but in keeping with my promise I'll post short thoughts and add them to the list on the front page of the thread. I used three benchmarks just to see where all of these sets fall - the TDK MT300, Dunu Trident, and Sony MH1C. These are just very brief listening impressions done over the course of two evenings.
XTZ EarPhone-12 (Manufacturer's page)
An interesting-looking earphone, but lacking in ergonomics. The squared-off tips are terrible. The buds are magnetic, which is good for storage. I've seen this before with the Zune Premium Earbuds. The packaging and build are extremely cheap, so I figured they would cost $20-30. With that assumption they actually don't sound bad - somewhere on the level of the Dunu Trident or Soundmagic E10. The sound has decent clarity and a slight bass boost, but lacks deep bass. It also lacks treble energy, and the presentation is oddly vague. The earphones do come with a DSP app, but it only works on iOS devices. In seeking info on the app, I ran across the manufacturer's website, and the price. € 70,00. Next!
JBL J22i (Manufacturer's page)
Nicely designed and overall quite well-built for $60. The cable is a little longer than average. Mild driver flex is present. The sound is extremely bassy but also quite bloated. It's not as muffled and veiled as the $24 TDK MT300, but not much better. Compared to my benchmark, the Dunu Trident, it seriously lacks in clarity and treble presence. If you're a basshead in need of a headset, just get the JVC FR201 instead.
Can't even find the product page for this but amazon.de shows a price of € 102,87. It also shows some very nice product images - ones that look much better than the actual thing. The earphone feels quite cheap compared to the JBL J22 - mostly plastic and with a memory-prone plastic cable. The sound is much better, however - there is still good bass but it's not nearly as bloated as the JBL. The mids are much clearer and more prominent and the treble is nice and smooth. Overall it easily beats the Dunu Trident and can compete with the Sony MH1C. All in all, it really isn't bad so it might get a full review down the line, especially if it's introduced to the US market.
Harman Kardon AE (Manufacturer's page)
The bass-heavy version of Harman's in-ear range. Construction is excellent - very tight and solid-feeling. As for the sound, there's definitely plenty of bass, and tends to be boomy. Sounded better than the Trident but not by much, and didn't keep up with the MH1C or AKG K376. Hard to take it seriously at $150.
Harman Kardon NI (Manufacturer's page)
This is the "balanced-sounding" version of Harman's new in-ears. For some reason Harman decided that it doesn't need to be as well-made as the AE version, so it feels cheaper and more plasticky. The sound is definitely less bassy than the AE version, but overall it doesn't sound much better - better than the Trident but a little flat and harsh compared to the MH1C. Probably a better value than the AE, but still not great.
All of the above are going on my "review not planned" list (found on the front page under the Planned Reviews heading) for the time being.
There are two more sets that do sound good - the Steelseries Flux In-Ear and In-Ear Pro. I certainly didn't expect two IEMs from a gaming headset company to sound as good as these do and beat entries from JBL and Harman, but they do.
The In-ear uses a dynamic driver. It looks a lot like the HiSound Crystal and is very comfortable, like the Crystal. The stock tips are also very nice. Quite impressed by these at $50, so I'll see if I can squeeze them in at some point in the future.
The In-ear Pro uses a single BA, as far as I can tell from the specs. Sound seems to be competitive with the UE 600, which is good. Priced at $130, I don't think it's quite as impressive a value as the regular Flux In-ear, but it's definitely good-sounding. Seems to be let down by some design choices - the cable uses an extender system with a proprietary connector, which seems unnecessary, and though it is advertised for both cable-down and cable-up wear, it seems to only work over-the-ear.
All in all, the Flux In-Ear is going in the "to review" pile. The In-Ear Pro and K376 are a maybe. The rest are best not mentioned again.