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Prospecting Audiophile - Page 3

post #31 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by Pianist View Post

I think it's the other way around: Dynamics do better in the high frequencies, while BAs rule in the bass and mids (if properly tuned, like ER4 or e-Q7).



I think different stereotypes apply for different price ranges...I think custom IEMs with BAs do everything exceptionally well.

post #32 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by Inks View Post

You're being too broad, elaborate. Bass texture is something BAs don't do as well (though there's still potential to) and usually don't have as much depth. I personally think it has to do with speed (and how the driver comes about to it), BAs have in general terms a faster bass which results in less decay/texture but offer more definition because of it. Some prefer the latter some the former, it's actually has subjective aspects. To put it simply BAs are better at faster bass and dd are better at slower bass. For treble it is also speed related, BAs just tend to sound sharper and have more potential to be more revealing. Mids is a toss up, it sort of becomes the result of the other two spectrums when positioning is given.  



I pick which driver depending on which music i'm listening to.

Joanna Newsom: dual BA.  Dubstep: dynamic driver

post #33 of 66


 

Quote:
Originally Posted by average_joe View Post

I think different stereotypes apply for different price ranges...I think custom IEMs with BAs do everything exceptionally well.


 

I agree with you there - even if we strongly disagree about the merits and shortcomings of the SM3s & UM3Xs - and will add that the new W4 (a universal IEM), in my view, does exceedingly well along the whole freq range.

I guess we have to thank james444 - a head-fier I quite like and respect, BTW - for the introduction of the term "timbre", a term that has somehow become fashionable (almost mandatory now when discussing good SQ) and adopted by a few H-fiers in the last few months. Apparently, DD IEMs offer the best "timbre". My very limited experience tells me this isn't necessarily so but, you know, the word gets round and then certain things suddenly become facts - much like the not so infrequent view that custom IEMs destroy all universals when it comes to SQ. When james444 'introduced' the term I didn't have a problem with it but now, to me, it's almost become like the term 'audiophile', a term that makes me cringe every time I see it.


Edited by music_4321 - 3/12/11 at 2:05pm
post #34 of 66

e-Q7 and ER4 have great timbre too and they are not dynamics. Actually, I thought more about it and I think that both BAs and dynamics can be equally great. However, the best dynamics will always beat any BAs in treble extension. Not that it matters, since most people don't hear that high anyway.

post #35 of 66

I think one person already mentioned this, but I'll chime in and reiterate: Find one that seems intriguing and is within your price range. Buy it. Get to know it. If you aren't satisfied, sell it and use those funds to repeat the process with a different model.

 

It was suggested that you use a place like Amazon who will accept returns. If that makes you feel weird for whatever reason, then just shop for used stuff in the classified section here. At most you might lose $10-15 on a sale, and a few dollars shipping, but that's a small price to pay to be able to try everything you want with your own ears. During the process you will also learn about the more subjective aspects like comfort, what tips work for you, which cables annoy you, etc. 


Edited by project86 - 3/12/11 at 2:02pm
post #36 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by project86 View PostDuring the process you will also learn about the more subjective aspects like comfort, what tips work for you, which cables annoy you, etc.


This is invaluable.  What someone else calls "rolled-off" treble you may call "laid back" treble.  "well represented" mids to one could very well be "harsh" mids to another.

 

If you haven't actually heard what these differences sound like, and have only read about them, you may be surprised at how overblown some of this stuff becomes. 

 

And, again, with all of that money, you have the potential to find "perfect" headphones.  At that price level, they are all "good."  Only one or two of them will be perfect for you.

post #37 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by music_4321 View Post

I agree with you there - even if we strongly disagree about the merits and shortcomings of the SM3s & UM3Xs - and will add that the new W4 (a universal IEM), in my view, does exceedingly well along the whole freq range.

I guess we have to thank james444 - a head-fier I quite like and respect, BTW - for the introduction of the term "timbre", a term that has somehow become fashionable (almost mandatory now when discussing good SQ) and adopted by a few H-fiers in the last few months. Apparently, DD IEMs offer the best "timbre". My very limited experience tells me this isn't necessarily so but, you know, the word gets round and then certain things suddenly become facts - much like the not so infrequent view that custom IEMs destroy all universals when it comes to SQ. When james444 'introduced' the term I didn't have a problem with it but now, to me, it's almost become like the term 'audiophile', a term that makes me cringe every time I see it.


I agree with your entire post.  And we hear the SM3 & UM3X differently, so what.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Pianist View Post

e-Q7 and ER4 have great timbre too and they are not dynamics. Actually, I thought more about it and I think that both BAs and dynamics can be equally great. However, the best dynamics will always beat any BAs in treble extension. Not that it matters, since most people don't hear that high anyway.


I am just wondering why do you insist on making statement like this that sounds like fact?  Have you tested frequency response of all BA IEMs and all dynamic IEMs?  

 


Edited by average_joe - 3/12/11 at 9:15pm
post #38 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by tuahogary View Post

It might but you won't really know until you try it. For pure rock (electric guitars, bass) I recommend the Panasonic HJE900. They are better at translating rock music more than expensive IEMs like the IE8 or W3. However they do have own their flaws (treble, detail) but for what they do with rock music, nothing else does it better.


Couldn't agree more on HJE900 - they are magical with rock in speed, dynamics, bass fullness, instrument separation and handling fast and dense guitars. They are also very good with slow jazz and accoustic music. They also quite sensitive and easy to drive unamped. As opposed to many other cans I dont find a need to EQ them. I find them easy to wear over the ear, sturdily built and classy looking.

But Panas have two drawbacks - bright recordings can have piercing treble sibilance and cables are short but replaceable. I have/had much more expensive W4, W3, W2 and MTPG and still find myself always coming back to HJE900 for rock and blues.
post #39 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by average_joe View Post


I agree with your entire post.  And we hear the SM3 & UM3X differently, so what.


 


I was merely pointing out that although I agreed with your premise that "custom IEMs with BAs do everything exceptionally well", we didn't necessarily agree on everything, in this case about 2 highly regarded top-tier BA IEMs. I also mentioned the W4s as this is the only universal IEM I've heard that has pretty much matched my $850 custom ES3X on SQ and I feel they "do everything exceptionally well" - if they came with detachable cables, the W4s, to me, would be a perfect IEM.

 

On a different note, and just for the record, I wouldn't recommend the W4 or any other (expensive) top-tier to the OP. I agree that if a person has no experience with more expensive (though not necessarily better) IEMs, they should try something (a lot) cheaper. A lot of what's said in these forum threads is pure exaggeration and hype. I personally think, for example, that the UM2 is a great sounding IEM which now also comes with an excellent detachable cable, has fantastic ergonomics and it's an IEM that delves into high SQ territory. Unfortunately, these days the UM2 has practically been forgotten/ ignored on Head-fi in favour of so many new, shiny, expensive and sometimes exotic offerings. The UM2 can be had for $250 or less (not cheap). I'd personally take the UM2 over the W3, SM3, SE535, SE530 & CK10, and would only prefer it over the TF10 for ergonomics and cable type, not SQ.

 


Edited by music_4321 - 3/13/11 at 4:52am
post #40 of 66
This thread has a lot of hype around the hje900 being better than top tier BA's. A lot of hype. I guess I'll find out first hand later this week.
post #41 of 66

Nobody ever said the HJE900 is better than top tier BAs. We just said that they do rock music better than them. I don't know how many times I must repeat that to make the message clear. From a technical standpoint, my W3 is better in terms of detail, treble and pretty much everything else but electric guitars don't sound as real with it compared to HJE900. Get it? It's not that hard to understand. Strum an electric guitar than compare it with the HJE900 and W3. Good luck trying the HJE900 but keep in mind that it needs at least 50 hours of burn in before it tames down, and even then the treble is still quite harsh.

 

If anything the Panasonics are underrated - probably because it's not some fancy audiophile brand that you can show off to your friends. 


Edited by tuahogary - 3/13/11 at 7:54am
post #42 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by music_4321 View Post


I was merely pointing out that although I agreed with your premise that "custom IEMs with BAs do everything exceptionally well", we didn't necessarily agree on everything, in this case about 2 highly regarded top-tier BA IEMs. I also mentioned the W4s as this is the only universal IEM I've heard that has pretty much matched my $850 custom ES3X on SQ and I feel they "do everything exceptionally well" - if they came with detachable cables, the W4s, to me, would be a perfect IEM.

 

On a different note, and just for the record, I wouldn't recommend the W4 or any other (expensive) top-tier to the OP. I agree that if a person has no experience with more expensive (though not necessarily better) IEMs, they should try something (a lot) cheaper. A lot of what's said in these forum threads is pure exaggeration and hype. I personally think, for example, that the UM2 is a great sounding IEM which now also comes with an excellent detachable cable, has fantastic ergonomics and it's an IEM that delves into high SQ territory. Unfortunately, these days the UM2 has practically been forgotten/ ignored on Head-fi in favour of so many new, shiny, expensive and sometimes exotic offerings. The UM2 can be had for $250 or less (not cheap). I'd personally take the UM2 over the W3, SM3, SE535, SE530 & CK10, and would only prefer it over the TF10 for ergonomics and cable type, not SQ.

 


Yes, and I agreed that we disagree on those two IEMs (hence I agree with what you posted), and I wouldn't be surprised if it didn't stop there.  I have had an opportunity to hear the W4 and for once I came away impressed with a Westone product.  Before that, I thought the Westone products just didn't work with my ears.  I didn't have enough time with them for a full evaluation, but I did hear a very nice and enjoyable presentation that didn't seem to have the issues I heard with the others.

 

And on you note, my thoughts are this: sure the OP can take the long road to get to where they are going to go.  They could just buy something on the lower end such as the UM2, never come back to head-fi, and be perfectly happy.  But, if the OP is determined to spend more, chances are that won't work for the long term.  As with me, curiosity lead me to my next purchase, and the next.  Has it been hype, or are things really that much better?  They only answer to that is yes, depending on each individuals perspective.  As you know, what people say here are opinion based on experience that can be influenced by emotions, either positive or negative (Positive: hearing your favorite song in a new way = this is so amazing; Negative: having high expectations and not hearing something that is up to those expectations = this is all hype).  I am not sure I would have enjoyed my custom IEMs as much if I didn't upgrade my sources along the way and heard what the best universals had to offer.  I believe hearing is a skill and critical listening and comparing audio reproduction systems does increase your ability to discern differences in audio, possibly making a small difference (and hype) for one item a much bigger difference and great improvement for another.  And proving any of this is impossible happy_face1.gif  But the journey prepares you for your final destination.

post #43 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by shotgunshane View Post

This thread has a lot of hype around the hje900 being better than top tier BA's. A lot of hype. I guess I'll find out first hand later this week.


Like others said it's not hype. It's just that to many people Panas sound excellent with rock. Nobody claimed that HJE like say W4 are good with all kinds of music or that they lack serious drawbacks. In fact HJE with their very pronounced V-curve that results in sometimes exaggerated bass and sometimes harsh treble and sometimes distant mids are the anathema of the holly trinity of proper headfier - balance, neutrality and control. To some this understandibly totally kills Panas but some like myself appreciate their fast and fun "hooligan" signature aided by rather intimate but deep soundstage with seductive instrument separation. All this works wonderfully when applied to such a hooligan and musically sloppy genre as rock. On the other hand Panas ruin symphonic music or most kinds of classic music for the matter. Modern pop, especially female like Lady Gaga, with its overly bright, processed and distorted mastering totally sucks on Panas. HJE's are very sensitive to the source and garbage-in-garbage-out should be taken seriously with them.

 

Also don't forget that Panas initial price which held for quite some time was $250 which indeed puts them into the same league as MTPG, W2 and close to W3. To me when  TF10 can be had for $180 (and occasionally less than $100), HJE for $100, RE-0 for less than $100 and Audeos PFE and DBA-02 for $150 there's little justification for the Westone (even W4), Monster, Earsonics and Sennheiser prices for their universal IEMs. 

 

post #44 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by albau View Post

 

Also don't forget that Panas initial price which held for quite some time was $250 which indeed puts them into the same league as MTPG, W2 and close to W3. To me when  TF10 can be had for $180 (and occasionally less than $100), HJE for $100, RE-0 for less than $100 and Audeos PFE and DBA-02 for $150 there's little justification for the Westone (even W4), Monster, Earsonics and Sennheiser prices for their universal IEMs. 

 


The W3 was initially $399 and that price remained unchanged for quite some time, so not that close to $250, after all.

 


Edited by music_4321 - 3/13/11 at 9:14am
post #45 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by music_4321 View Post




The W3 was initially $399 and that price remained unchanged for quite some time, so not that close to $250, after all.

 

I got my W3 brand new from the authorized dealer for $300 and still think they are not worth even that. 
 

 

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