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RE0 amped, RE-Zero, or DBA-02???

post #1 of 38
Thread Starter 

I am a longtime lurker who has become quite obsessed with this forum but haven't posted yet due to my "newbie" status.  I've just been sitting here behind the scenes like a sponge soaking up all the great info you all have to offer.

 

Anyway, I purchased the RE0 about 9 months ago and have been using it amped with the quite modest E5 with a Fiio LOD out of my 3rd gen. Ipod Touch.  I definitely think I prefer a more balanced, analytical sound because I am analytical and detail oriented by nature (engineer) and don't think I would like an earphone that colors the sound too much.

 

I initially thought I'd just upgrade my amp to an E7 or Ibasso T3 or something since I've heard a decent amp makes the RE0 shine.  Then I found out the RE-Zero has lower impedence and should be better unamped.  Then I heard about the Fischer DBA's and their sale is about at the max I want to spend.

 

Since I have the itch for an improvement in my current set-up, which do you recommend?  Get a better amp for my RE0's, get the RE-Zero's and use unamped, or order the DBA's?  Which would give me the best overall sound improvement?  FYI, I mostly listen to indie rock and use high quality mp3's.

 

Other suggestions are welcome, but I don't really want to go over $150 right now.

 

Thanks for the help! 

post #2 of 38

hrmm, that is a tough one.  I have the RE0 and RE252, and even amped, the RE252 sounds more fun and more engaging over the RE0.  The RE252 has more forward mids, which I like, but still remains quite balanced.  From this small information, I wouldn't go for the RE-Zero if you already have the RE0 since it wouldn't really be an upgrade.  Both of the RE are very similar.

 

If I were you, I know the E5 doesn't bring out the best potential out of the RE0.  So, you can either invest in a better amp.  Or, I would go straight for the DBA-02. 

post #3 of 38

im going through the exact same process. i think im going for the dba-02.. lets take the plunge together :)

post #4 of 38

Well, the RE-Zero and the DBAs are my two top IEMs right now, and to me, the choice is pretty simple all things considered. The DBAs deliver a smoother sound sig, but don't leave out the detail, clarity and transparency (very neutral, balanced, but fun too - hard to explain). Having said that, I only really like the DBAs with Ety triple flange tips or my custom tips, deep insertion tips. For some reason, with shorter tips, the DBAs sound harsh to me, but not so the Zeros.

 

I also have a Touch 3G, and the DBAs have great synergy using HP out. However, I also use the LOD/T3 with the DBAs, and they scale up very nicely with the amp. Same with the Zeros.

 

Tough call, really, but I think the $50 or so it worth it for the DBAs.

post #5 of 38

For an amp I have no idea how capable the T3 or E7 are but the minimum quality of amp  you would want is something along the lines of a mini3 for something like the RE0. I would be surprised if the T3 is better than the mini3 although technology is getting better and that amp has gotten good reviews.

 

RE-Zero is better unamped than the RE0 but you also have to deal with an additional adapter unless you have some kind of balanced source (which is a bit unlikely) but if you are lucky your source will accept it without an adapter but don't have too high hopes on that. I've heard Cowon S9 and D2 being able to use it but I don't have either to try it out.

 

DBA-02 are also better unamped than the RE0 and I use them unamped. They are better than the RE-Zero from memory but I haven't been able to compared them side by side. The DBA-02 imo is the best of the three but at a premium compared to the others. They do have a better cable than the other two although they have a straight plug instead of a right angle. They also isolate more and more comfortable for me. They are more refined but share a similar signature to the other two. Both the RE0 and the RE-Zero are better buys for bang for your buck imo but the Zero is the superior phone but keep in mind I haven't done any A/B.
 

post #6 of 38

Well, unless you have free shipping, the DBA-02 might go over $150.  If you are refer to Ethan's deal of $144, I was quoted $12 (but I don't know if that was in CAD or USD) to ship within Canada.  International would probably cost more.  If you take shipping into consideration, you're only stuck with the RE-Zero.

post #7 of 38

I have both the RE0 & RE-ZERO.

unamped i would go for the ZERO.

Some have said the ZEROs are closer to the RE252s and i find them to have a bit more detail and brighter more forward mids than the RE0s. I also find the detail in the highs (cymbals etc) very nice and clear

The more i listen to them the more i like them.

There sound signature is different enough from the RE0s for me to want to keep them both and on the walkman at home i prefer the ZEROs.

I do find bass boost is ideal for both of these IEMs.
 


Edited by paulypaul - 8/9/10 at 6:30am
post #8 of 38

dba came out to like 151 or so and I live in the us

post #9 of 38
Quote:
Originally Posted by jaker782 View Post
<snip>  Which would give me the best overall sound improvement? <snip>


I'm not sure by my signature might be of some help to you. Either way they are all great 'phones for the price so you should be happy regardless.

As I haven't heard or read much about any of them I won't comment about which set up you should go for.

post #10 of 38
Quote:
Originally Posted by paulypaul View Post

 

Unamped it sounds nicer in the mids than the slightly recessed RE0s mids.

 


The RE0 do not have recessed mids.  The RE252 as well as the RE-Zero have more forward mids.  Being more forward does not mean the RE0 are recessed...

Quote:

Originally Posted by tacomn View Post

dba came out to like 151 or so and I live in the us



From Budgen Audio?  Hrmmm, I want a new shipping quote!  And, here I thought us Canadians would get it cheaper *sad face*  lol

post #11 of 38

its because you got tax since it ships within canada... I got upgraded shipping to which cost like 6 dollars and change

post #12 of 38
Thread Starter 

Thanks for all the responses.  I was actually kind of leaning towards springing the extra for the DBA's.  Sound will be a little better, a bigger difference from the signature of my RE0, a different driver type, no balanced adapter to worry about, and I think I can go over my budget a few dollars for shipping to the US.

 

Plus, if the DBA's have good synergy with the Touch 3G it sounds like the way to go.  I also wouldn't mind the additional "fun factor" that many have said these possess.

 

My only concern is the stock tips.  The stock medium single flanges give me the best seal and comfort with the RE0, so I was hoping the stock mediums will work with the DBA's as well.  The fact that most use the Ety Tri's makes me think I may have to invest in some of those as well.

post #13 of 38
Quote:
Originally Posted by tacomn View Post

its because you got tax since it ships within canada... I got upgraded shipping to which cost like 6 dollars and change



Bested by the Canadian Tax again!!!  Wait don't you guys get taxed once the item crosses the border?  If not, ugh free trade my foot...

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by jaker782 View Post

Thanks for all the responses.  I was actually kind of leaning towards springing the extra for the DBA's.  Sound will be a little better, a bigger difference from the signature of my RE0, a different driver type, no balanced adapter to worry about, and I think I can go over my budget a few dollars for shipping to the US.

 

Plus, if the DBA's have good synergy with the Touch 3G it sounds like the way to go.  I also wouldn't mind the additional "fun factor" that many have said these possess.

 

My only concern is the stock tips.  The stock medium single flanges give me the best seal and comfort with the RE0, so I was hoping the stock mediums will work with the DBA's as well.  The fact that most use the Ety Tri's makes me think I may have to invest in some of those as well.


You won't know until you try all the tips the DBA-02 has to offer. 
 

post #14 of 38
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by JosephKim View Post

im going through the exact same process. i think im going for the dba-02.. lets take the plunge together :)


Haha, I was hoping someone else might benefit from this discussion as well... there has been a lot of talk about the Zero's and DBA's on this forum lately but no real comparisons yet.

 

So far, it sounds like the extra money for the DBA's is warranted, especially for someone who already has the RE0's.

post #15 of 38

Well not many have both the Zero and DBA-02 so naturally there won't be many comparisons

 

@mythless: A couple bucks is better than customs fees at least :P

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