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If you still love Etymotic ER4, this is the thread for you... - Page 212

post #3166 of 4677
@Spyro, live music has bass that can be felt in addition to being heard. Iems have bass that can only be heard. Most iems try to increase "heard" bass to replicate the missing "felt" bass, and this technique works for some people's perception sometimes. Sometimes increased bass works for me too, but other times I find it unconvincing because it just sounds like bloated, less detailed bass instead of tight "heard" bass in addition to "felt" bass as in a live setting. I hope I'm being clear; let me know please if I can explain it more clearly.

Also have you used tones to figure out if the ER4 has a bump in the midrange for you or not? This could make a big difference for perceived bass emphasis relative to the midrange. I have found that with red filters I do not hear any mid range emphasis in the ER4S. Everyone has a slightly different HRTF though, so some will hear a bump there and others won't.
post #3167 of 4677
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hutnicks View Post
 

.

 

You had to buy the whole lineup to figure you like the shures better?

 

 

No.  Most of my Ety experience was from like 2003-2008.  Once the IEM technology advanced with SE530 and TF10  I moved forward past Ety.

post #3168 of 4677
Quote:
Originally Posted by gnarlsagan View Post

@Spyro, live music has bass that can be felt in addition to being heard. Iems have bass that can only be heard. Most iems try to increase "heard" bass to replicate the missing "felt" bass, and this technique works for some people's perception sometimes. Sometimes increased bass works for me too, but other times I find it unconvincing because it just sounds like bloated, less detailed bass instead of tight "heard" bass in addition to "felt" bass as in a live setting. I hope I'm being clear; let me know please if I can explain it more clearly.
 

Almost seems like you are saying the "felt" part of the bass simply cant be done properly with IEM's.  Can't be done with headphones either I suppose.

 

So in a desire to listen to music that is similar to what one would hear in the live setting...shouldn't there be SOME element of a feel or tactile representation of the bass?  None at all is like a handheld transistor radio.

 

I totally understand where you are coming from and I agree and that is still where mine and most people's problems lie with the Etys.

 

It has dead nuts on great reproduction of bass tones but poor to no tactile confirmation.  I also understand that a bass bloated IEM can overepresent that aspect of the presentation screwing everything up but there are many IEM's that are very "careful" about how much tactile bass they show and when done right it then becomes the real deal.  GR10, W2 come to mind for me.

 

Sort of on a tangent from that..... I think "live" music usually sounds bad compared to digitally reproduced music through headphones or IEM's.  Recording studio would be the exception.


Edited by Spyro - 11/10/13 at 6:15pm
post #3169 of 4677

You can EQ the bass of the Ety, nothing you can do about the cliff that is the Shure treble.  Problem with most iems isn't bass boost, it's upper mid/lower treble scoop out and a massive spike in the ~10KHz range.  Ety has neither problem.  My Westone UM3X and previous Shure 420... mud.

post #3170 of 4677
Oh, Shure includes a treble with their IEMs? I never seem to hear it on those rare occasions that I break mine out for a listen.
Edited by robm321 - 11/10/13 at 7:21pm
post #3171 of 4677
The brain has a remarkable knack for taking sounds that are being injected directly into the ear canal and convincing itself that it sounds enjoyable.
post #3172 of 4677
Quote:
Originally Posted by _js_ View Post
 

One minor annoyance with the JDS Labs C5D vs., say, the Sony PHA-1 or the CEntrance HiFi M8 is that you need TWO cables to connect your Lightning connector iDevice.  First, the Camera Connection Kit from the iDevice, then the USB to Micro USB cable to the C5D.  The PHA-1 and M8 have full size USB sockets that will accept a standard lightning to USB cable--like the one that COMES WITH your iDevice.  However, those units are double or triple the cost of the C5D, and there's no reason that one could make (or a company couldn't make) a CCK which terminates in a micro-USB.  If anyone knows of such a cable PLEASE post a link!

 

As for ER-4S, I am slogging my way through this thread, page by page, post by post.  I'm on page 145 right now, I think--I made a note of it somewhere.

 

Has anyone done an ER-4 resource thread or wiki or whatnot?  I'm imaging a basic section on what the ER4 is, pictures, links to reviews, etc., and a FAQ section with stuff like what the difference between P and S and PT models are, if a P + P-to-S adaptor = 4S, etc., and a section on all the different tips that people have successfully used with the ER4's.  Section on filters, where to buy them, using red instead of green, etc.  tips on how to insert properly and get a good seal.  Useful things like, oh, BTW, there is an iTunes App called "Awareness!" that will feed the microphone into the music to bring back an awareness of what's going on around you, with neat options, etc.

 

Anyway . . . is there such a thread?  Because having to read through 200+ pages to extract all this info is a lot of work.  Figured I might save others the trouble.

 

Let me know!

 

I'm making reviews and will have a much more comprehensive set of videos on the er4s soon on my youtube page:  www.youtube.com/user/dentreviews  just an FYI.

post #3173 of 4677
Quote:
Originally Posted by Spyro View Post

Almost seems like you are saying the "felt" part of the bass simply cant be done properly with IEM's.  Can't be done with headphones either I suppose.

So in a desire to listen to music that is similar to what one would hear in the live setting...shouldn't there be SOME element of a feel or tactile representation of the bass?  None at all is like a handheld transistor radio.

I totally understand where you are coming from and I agree and that is still where mine and most people's problems lie with the Etys.

It has dead nuts on great reproduction of bass tones but poor to no tactile confirmation.  I also understand that a bass bloated IEM can overepresent that aspect of the presentation screwing everything up but there are many IEM's that are very "careful" about how much tactile bass they show and when done right it then becomes the real deal.  GR10, W2 come to mind for me.

Sort of on a tangent from that..... I think "live" music usually sounds bad compared to digitally reproduced music through headphones or IEM's.  Recording studio would be the exception.

Yeah with iems there will always be a compromise somewhere imo. With headphones too, but to a lesser degree. Headphones produce sound that passes by the outer ear, so headphones aren't as susceptible to individual differences in HRTF. Iems either have tight defined bass, or tactile bass imo, or something in between. There's no real clear cut delineation that makes one better than the other; both well defined and tactile bass presentations offer different things.

I think it makes sense to have different iems to cover these two different aspects. I like the ER4S for tight bass definition and the MH1 for tactile "feeling".
post #3174 of 4677
Quote:
Originally Posted by Spyro View Post
 

This is not thread crapping as I have purchased ER6i once, ER4S once, ER4P 3 times and HF5 once so Ety has my respect and my money over the years.....but...

HOW ACCURATE IS IT?  

 

  I HAVE sat in studios with musicians playing.

 

I could pick a bunch of different IEM's but what I hear is much closer to a fuller SE535 of type of sound than a ER4...PERIOD.  I don't know what else I could say.

 

Is the disconnect having the speaker pick-ups directed right into the instruments versus a broader range of the room itself getting the room acoustics involved?  Ety presentation sounds wired directly to the skull which is NOT what it sounds like when I am sitting live in the studio.  Can anyone explain this?

 

Should we be differentiating between total reproduciton right to the skull versus a "live" type presentation as an audience participant which would give more space to the presentation and less claustrophobic?

 

P.S.   By the way, Etymotic should think about changing the Dennis Smith endorsement (Police sound engineer) on their website for ER4.   The 40 year old band is as outdated as their IEM's are.  Even U2 or REM would be only 20 years old.

 

You want someone to explain why sitting "live in the studio" sounds different than "sounds wired directly to the skull"?  Seriously?  First of all, no one "sitting live" in a studio will hear what finally gets put together and mixed and adjusted and sent out to the world!  In fact, you might not even hear all the instruments at once if you're sitting around the studio during recording sessions!  No one, not even the musicians, will hear, live in the studio, what the final product will be!  Right?

 

I mean, not unless the recording session is indeed attempting to capture a "live" sound--maybe even quite literally, especially in the case of something like a string quartet or orchestra or solo cello or whatever.  Then maybe there are two mics placed out in the audience on a T bar.

 

Or . . . maybe even inside a dummy head to capture a BINAURAL recording.

 

Take such a binaural recording, put the ER-4B's (or ER-4S's) in your ears properly, plug them into good equipment . . . and . . . you will hear something VERY MUCH like what you heard sitting in the audience.  Leaving felt bass aside, of course.

 

But, the point is that you are grossly conflating different things in your post here!

 

I can remember endless discussions and arguments, back in the day, in Stereophile magazine and in other places, about the "standard" to which Hi Fi equipment and recordings were to be measured.  There was the "live performance" standard, of course.  But then what about electronic music?  And what about the simple fact that even acoustic music is almost always multiply mic'd and mixed and processed and mastered into something that is not what someone "sitting live in the studio" would have heard?

 

I am a pianist and a piano tuner / technician.  I trained for years to learn how to tune and voice pianos, not to mention repair, rebuild, and refinish them.  I have a highly trained ear (I always tune by ear, never with an electronic tuner) and I know what a piano should sound like.  And the ER-4S is very very good at creating a convincing, accurate, even, and faithful rendition of a piano (assuming the source recording is good).  I know this, better than most people.  Of course, really good speakers would do even better . . . but I assume we're limiting ourselves to headphones here.

 

All this other stuff about the sound "presentation" and "sound stage" and all that--all of it is really on THE RECORDING SIDE of things.  I mean, heck, we could do the whole Bose thing and have speakers firing backwards, side-ways, etc., and try to create more of a sound stage or ambiance or whatever--and people may even LIKE such a thing--but it is something ADDED AFTERWARDS and it has nothing whatsoever to do with fidelity.  If you like it, great!  But it's not what a Studio Monitor is designed to do.  Nor, I hardly need add, what an In Ear Monitor is designed to do.

 

If you don't like how the Ety's pair with your music library recordings, that's totally understandable and not something that anyone can or should argue with.  But to imply that this lack of "fullness" means a lack of fidelity and accuracy via some notion of what a "live studio" (an oxymoron if ever there was one) sounds like is confused, confusing, and highly problematic.

 

As for The Police sound engineer and his endorsement, I'm going to go out on a limb and say that human hearing and the nature of sound hasn't changed since his endorsement.  Fidelity doesn't become "outdated".  Bands don't become outdated.  Not if they are iconic, classic, amazing bands.  We're still using a tuning that J.S. Bach championed centuries ago (equal temperment).  And we're still listening to (and loving) music even older than that.  If J.S. Bach could give a rave from the grave, saying how great recorded organ music sounded through the ER-4S's, I think it might be worth mentioning and KEEPING posted on the Ety web site!  LOL!

post #3175 of 4677


and J S Bach too!

post #3176 of 4677
Quote:
Originally Posted by Spyro View Post
 

This is not thread crapping as I have purchased ER6i once, ER4S once, ER4P 3 times and HF5 once so Ety has my respect and my money over the years.....but...

HOW ACCURATE IS IT?  

 

  I HAVE sat in studios with musicians playing.

 

I could pick a bunch of different IEM's but what I hear is much closer to a fuller SE535 of type of sound than a ER4...PERIOD.  I don't know what else I could say.

 

Is the disconnect having the speaker pick-ups directed right into the instruments versus a broader range of the room itself getting the room acoustics involved?  Ety presentation sounds wired directly to the skull which is NOT what it sounds like when I am sitting live in the studio.  Can anyone explain this?

 

Should we be differentiating between total reproduciton right to the skull versus a "live" type presentation as an audience participant which would give more space to the presentation and less claustrophobic?

 

P.S.   By the way, Etymotic should think about changing the Dennis Smith endorsement (Police sound engineer) on their website for ER4.   The 40 year old band is as outdated as their IEM's are.  Even U2 or REM would be only 20 years old.


Whatever works for you really, I don't think one person can really comment accurately on what another hears/perceives. Personally, I think I have become so accustomed to the ER4S sound that any other IEM sounds off when I listen to it. If the SE535 do it for you, then they do it for you, simple as; I've yet to find any headphone that recreates the studio experience, the best one can hope for is an approximation.

 

NB. Dennis Smith used both Ultimate Ears customs and ER4s and says both are exceptional! He settled on the Ety's because he can remove/replace them more quickly when required (critical during live performance)! Simple as that! As for his engineering skills, they cannot be called into question as they are professional, exceptional and very in demand. When not on tour with various bands he works in an amazing HD Pro Tools studio in LA. 

post #3177 of 4677
Once you get used to a certain sound, every other brand of earphone will sound "off" to you. Quit your first set cold turkey and listen to another pair for a few days, and the new pair will become your reference. That's how the brain works.
post #3178 of 4677

^ Maybe how your brain works, not mine. There are some headphones that no matter how long I listen to them never sound right or reference. 

post #3179 of 4677
Quote:
Originally Posted by gnarlsagan View Post
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Spyro View Post

Almost seems like you are saying the "felt" part of the bass simply cant be done properly with IEM's.  Can't be done with headphones either I suppose.

So in a desire to listen to music that is similar to what one would hear in the live setting...shouldn't there be SOME element of a feel or tactile representation of the bass?  None at all is like a handheld transistor radio.

I totally understand where you are coming from and I agree and that is still where mine and most people's problems lie with the Etys.

It has dead nuts on great reproduction of bass tones but poor to no tactile confirmation.  I also understand that a bass bloated IEM can overepresent that aspect of the presentation screwing everything up but there are many IEM's that are very "careful" about how much tactile bass they show and when done right it then becomes the real deal.  GR10, W2 come to mind for me.

Sort of on a tangent from that..... I think "live" music usually sounds bad compared to digitally reproduced music through headphones or IEM's.  Recording studio would be the exception.

Yeah with iems there will always be a compromise somewhere imo. With headphones too, but to a lesser degree. Headphones produce sound that passes by the outer ear, so headphones aren't as susceptible to individual differences in HRTF. Iems either have tight defined bass, or tactile bass imo, or something in between. There's no real clear cut delineation that makes one better than the other; both well defined and tactile bass presentations offer different things.

I think it makes sense to have different iems to cover these two different aspects. I like the ER4S for tight bass definition and the MH1 for tactile "feeling".

 

Yes, the er4s is ridiculously "tight" and fast, but a lot of that is the frequency response.  I prefer the er4s for tight bass and the mh1 for "speaker-like" bass as well.  However, if you eq the mh1 to sound like the response of the er4s, the bass becomes surprisingly more "tight" as well.  Which shows how drastic eq can affect the sound.  It won't sound identical, as they are different earphones with difference specs and properties, but still it illustrates the power of eq.

 

I think one can get used to the non-speaker-like bass sound of an iem to the point where it is absolutely no problem.  I listened to the sony ex85lp for 4 years and never once thought they were too bassy.  In fact, I told people the bass was great because they were the only thing that sounded like a speaker to me.  Wow.  I can't even listen to those now.  I mean, they aren't the worst ever.  In fact, considering the bass level, they're not bass overall.  But still, they sound like a cannon of bass to me now.  After seeking flatness and hearing so many different iems, I now know and can easily hear that the "extra bass" needed to get a speaker like feel really does mask the rest of the spectrum.  However, I feel there is a good balance that reveals an incredible amount of details while also giving a good sensation of bass.  It is half way between the er4s and the mh1.  So for me, that means adding bass with the er4s using eq, or cutting bass with eq on the mh1.

 

But not everyone will agree, and thus we have the +6db rule.  If you feel that helps, it really doesn't muddy things up that much.  It really just adds a bit more bass presence and warmth to things.  But if it is done in a smooth consistent curve it doesn't really detract from the overall sound that much.  But some people would rather hear the spectrum equally at the lack of the tactility that rule supposedly gives you.  I can't say which I find is better.  I actually fall somewhere between the two.  But the er4s with my eq based on graphs sounds pretty damn good and reference to me.  The mh1 as well with the bass cut, but I'm still tweaking that one.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by palmfish View Post

Once you get used to a certain sound, every other brand of earphone will sound "off" to you. Quit your first set cold turkey and listen to another pair for a few days, and the new pair will become your reference. That's how the brain works.

 

This is true to some degree, but I find that I can easily differentiate a "sound" after having this happen a few times.  Once you are familiar with flatness and how eq affects sounds, etc., to "some" degree you eliminate the brain adaption part of things.  I can easily listen to a w4r for weeks and feel they are muffled due to the midbass.  I can then switch to the er4s for weeks and still feel they lack sub bass.  But there is definitely a familiarity you gain with a sound and you can "get used to" something to some degree and not think it's as bad as you once did for instance.

post #3180 of 4677
Quote:
Originally Posted by robm321 View Post

^ Maybe how your brain works, not mine. There are some headphones that no matter how long I listen to them never sound right or reference. 

I agree with you and luisdent completely - I am not talking about compensating for obvious differences in sound. For example, I have never liked the HD650 and no amount of listening will make me grow accustomed to its signature.

What I am talking about is what many people refer to as "burn-in." It is simply acclimatization.

My first pair of "serious" headphones was the HD 650. I always thought they lacked "life" but I had nothing to compare them to. The first time I heard the HD 800 I thought they were intolerably bright and thin sounding. Eventually, I replaced the HD 650 with the HD 600. I much preferred the HD 600 and enjoyed them for quite some time. It was during this period that I had another opportunity to listen to the HD 800. Well, I think you know where this is going...they were astounding! What happened to that shrill, bright, tinny sounding headphone? Obviously, nothing changed except for my perception.
Edited by palmfish - 11/11/13 at 10:52am
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