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IEM for Classical - Page 2

post #16 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by JxK View Post




Not really. Actually, pretty much the opposite is true, in my opinion. Classical music requires an IEM to do 3 things very well:

 

1) Soundstage - orchestra recordings sound terrible in a compressed space.

2) Bass - those timpani are there for a reason. Listening to Mahler, as an example, without good bass simply sucks away all the emotion.

3) Timbre - elusive and difficult to quantify, but good timbre is almost exclusively the domain of dynamic driver IEMs.

 

Etymotic's IEMs, with their sharply rolled off and recessed bass, tiny soundstage, and poor timbre fail at these three elements. In my experience, the above three characteristics are almost always best exemplified by dynamic driver IEMs. YYMV.

 

Edit: Not that etymotic IEMs aren't good for very specific types of music - violin solos come to mind - but by and large, they would be my last choice for classical music.



I believe that decent soundstage can be found only in full size cans..preferably open ones...so you are right about the soundstage thing but here we are talking about iem's.   the second most important thing for classical imo is "flat" frequency response..as much flatter and linear as possible.  from my experience with the etymotic HF5..they are sure pretty flat sounding.  not 100% neutral as there isn't such a thing..but very close to it.

I believe that balanced armatures are more suitable for outputing an accurate tone than dynamic drivers.


Edited by plonter - 9/26/10 at 12:06am
post #17 of 29

Try and decide jarrett.  IMHO classical music is hard cataegory to perform well with IEM due to 1 and 3 that JxK mentioned where fullsize cans like the Sennheisers, AKG, and Beyers are well known for excel at with proper amping.  Your budget of $100 is slightly a constraint because most IEM that sell at this price range focus on the pop/rock/rap and few inbetween.  My favorite IEM, which happens to by dynamic for nearly all genres of music is the JVC/Fictor FX700, but those are $350 and if don't need IEM, you're better off with one of the three fullsize cans already mentioned.  For me, instrument seperation  is must for classical listening sessions, I value this character above all else, which my past IEM ownership happened to from mainly balanced armatures, with the exeption for the FX700, but then again like you'll read time and time again, your ears will tell you the real truth.  Good luck. Nice thing about the ER4P/S is that if you get them for $100-120, you'll sell them for the same price as you bought them if you don't fancy them.


Edited by alphaphoenix - 9/26/10 at 12:13am
post #18 of 29
@JxK
So what iem do you recommend for classical?
I found the ER4P to be good for well recorded classical but most of it isn't.
post #19 of 29
Thread Starter 

MC5 ARRIVED biggrin.gif


Edited by jarrett - 9/29/10 at 12:22pm
post #20 of 29
Thread Starter 

re: MC5

 

Yuck, where did my music go? These phones are so mid-centric and push everything else back significantly; it's there, but unenjoyable. The comment about these phones being cool and warm at the same time is true and an annoying quality. There's this harshness about the sound where you can just feel it tickling your ear...an unpleasant coarse quality (perhaps more the headphones revealing the recording?)


Edited by jarrett - 9/29/10 at 12:40pm
post #21 of 29

You mean the MC5? Hmm for Classicals, I would personally choose Ortofon's e-Q7 , I like how they perform their instrument seperation and reproducing each of them naturally and realistic, but ears may differ and it might not apply to you and fellow head-fiers out there wink.gif

 

Just my 2 cents~

post #22 of 29

HJE900 smily_headphones1.gif

post #23 of 29
Thread Starter 

It's funny because I know the Ety's are more accurate than the RE2 and RE0 I've owned. I guess my musical preferences have widened recently and I can't settle for something that is only good at one thing (and wasn't that good really...).

post #24 of 29
Thread Starter 

Thanks! I just saw free shipping on your ebay link too and updated my first post biggrin.gif

post #25 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by JxK View Post

Not really. Actually, pretty much the opposite is true, in my opinion. Classical music requires an IEM to do 3 things very well:

 

1) Soundstage - orchestra recordings sound terrible in a compressed space.

2) Bass - those timpani are there for a reason. Listening to Mahler, as an example, without good bass simply sucks away all the emotion.

3) Timbre - elusive and difficult to quantify, but good timbre is almost exclusively the domain of dynamic driver IEMs.


I missed this post while being on vacation, but have to bump/cite it now because it's so true. Had a lot of listening time during the last weeks, mostly classical and I concur with you 100%.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by plonter View Post

I believe that decent soundstage can be found only in full size cans..preferably open ones...so you are right about the soundstage thing but here we are talking about iem's.   the second most important thing for classical imo is "flat" frequency response..as much flatter and linear as possible.  from my experience with the etymotic HF5..they are sure pretty flat sounding.  not 100% neutral as there isn't such a thing..but very close to it.

I believe that balanced armatures are more suitable for outputing an accurate tone than dynamic drivers.

 

As far as timbre is concerned I'm strongly with JxK. I've never heard a BA phone that can hold a candle to the best dynamics. However the new MA (moving armatures) are an interesting developement, they have the detail and clarity of BA and at the same time more realistic timbre. The e-Q7, FI-BA-SB and FI-BA-SS are all great IEMs for classical.

 

Last not least, concerning soundstage: like with full sized cans, IME the open IEMs have the best soundstage. FX700 is an excellent example, fantastic soundstage for classical plus top class dynamics and timbre. Wear them with only a loose seal and they are also reasonably flat. Or the Radius DDM which are technically no open IEMs in the sense of the the FX700 and rather bass monsters with recessed highs if you wear them sealed. Yet almost magically, once you exchange your ususal tips for smaller ones and deliberately break the seal to let them breathe, they turn into one of the most amazing phones for classical I've ever heard. I'm still debating whether these or the FX700 are my personal kings of soundstage, but both are as close to full sized cans as it gets with IEMs.

post #26 of 29
Thread Starter 

I'd love to get the Silver Bullet additionally to hear what a great soundstage is like. Just hope they fix those fragile cables before I go ahead with it

 

Edit: My replacement RE0 arrived and they are in my drawer as a nice backup smily_headphones1.gif

 

I commented about the Sunrise SW-Xcape and RE0 here: http://www.head-fi.org/forum/thread/515076/re0-and-sunrise-sw-xcape/15#post_7007692


Edited by jarrett - 10/22/10 at 10:13pm
post #27 of 29
Thread Starter 

- Head-Direct RE0 own

- Sunrise SW-Xcape bought

- Fischer Audio Silver Bullet rev 2 bought

 

- Fischer Audio Eterna ($65, bugdenaudio, gd-audiobase)

- Fischer Audio DBA-02 ($160, bugdenaudio, gd-audiobase)

- Etymotic MC5 ($79, owned Ety's before, easy choice, amazon) yuck

- Brainwavz M3 ($90, mp4nation.net)

 

Anything else around $100 I'm missing? I'd like it to be easily purchaseable online or through a retailer (Toronto, Ontario) and with a decent warranty / build quality

 

My musical preferences are: 60% Classical, 40% World (including pure acoustic music like Toumani Diabate and Hamza El Din)

 

Thank you for ideas!


Edited by jarrett - 1/31/11 at 4:00pm
post #28 of 29

Comparing the sound of my MC5 and my Grado SR80 to what I hear from, say, the Cleveland Orchestra in Severance Hall, I have no hesitation in saying that the MC5 comes closer to accuracy (as regards frequency response). Nevertheless I definitely prefer to listen with the Grados when circumstances permit. (Ironically, the sound of a live orchestra can even sound slightly dull by comparison after getting used to the upper-mid and midbass boosts of the Grados!) For listening to recorded music there is clearly something to be said for a bit of tasteful hyping of the sound, to compensate for aspects of attending a live performance that are missing. Still, I'd have a hard time blaming Ety for successfully aiming at neutrality, even as I acknowledge that neutrality isn't necessarily the be-all and end-all.

post #29 of 29
Thread Starter 

Whoops, I meant to edit post one. I've been updating it for my use :) Looks like the Fischer Audio Eterna Rev 1 are back by the way.

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