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Westone W4 vs. Audio Technica ATH-CK10

post #1 of 153
Thread Starter 
I attempted to buy a DBA-02, but that didn't go well. Given a lack of faith in the companies involved, I'm looking for alternatives.

The obvious and closest alternative seems to be the CK10, though this shall be my last IEM purchase for a while and so I'm contemplating other choices. Cost is secondary to sound.

I definitely want BA based 'phones.

The W4 intrigues.

A few questions:

1. I suppose W4 is a more of a mid-centric balanced IEM? And the CK10 is more of an analytical IEM?

Balanced or analytical: I'm not sure which I want... I want a flat response curve. Which is that?

2. which is "faster"?
3. which has better bass extension? Which has cleaner bass?
4. which more excels on the top end? More extension?

and:

5. are there any alternatives I should be considering?
Edited by AngryBaconGod - 5/3/11 at 8:34am
post #2 of 153

Well there are a few DBA-02 in the FS forums if you want to get one.

post #3 of 153
The CK10 is faster, has more realistic bass and excels at the top end. Both are detailed but the CK is more so. If you want more bass get the W4, if you want more clarity get the CK10.
post #4 of 153

I don't know anything about the W4, but I have been doing some research on the CK10 myself since I am planning to get a pair^^

The first post of this thread contains a comparison with the CK100. The second post of this thread has even more reviews of the CK10.

http://www.head-fi.org/forum/thread/480346/comparison-audio-technica-ck10-and-ck100

 

If you are lazy and don't want to go through every link, I found that these three reviews were probably the most informative.

http://www.head-fi.org/forum/thread/484834/why-so-seeeerious-hahahaha-ck10-vs-e-q7-and-a-rave-about-where-to-get-them-from

http://www.head-fi.org/forum/thread/473075/clash-of-the-titans-hje900-vs-ck10-vs-turbine-pro-gold

http://www.head-fi.org/forum/thread/465776/comparison-ath-ck10-vs-ue-tf10-lots-of-pics-56k-warning

 

I'll try to help with some of your questions as well. These are all based on all the reviews I've read >.>

1. I have read that the CK10s are analytical. They was even a thread comparing then to the K701. If "flat response curve" means "not colored", then yes, you want analytical~

2. Many reviews stress that the CK10s are VERY fast, so I'm pretty sure you are all set there

3. The CK10s are not bass monsters, but many users find that there is "just the right amount". I have also read that you can get more bass by inserting them deeper into your ear.

4. The CK10s are praised for having an upper extension that goes up up and beyond. The detail and precision in the treble is said to be even greater than that of the the RE0s.

5. I am currently between the Ortofon E-Q7 and the CK10, so that may be another option for you~

 

Sorry I could only comment about the CK10, and could only give links and info about what I've read, not what I've heard >_<

post #5 of 153
Thread Starter 
Thanks all so far, and especially Kagelou for the detailed post!

To clarify my bass requirements, I want a 'phone which extends deep into the low frequencies, but I don't want bass bloat.

Perhaps this will clarify: currently I have IE8's which extend deep, but are rather bloated in bass and midbass. I use parametric EQ to "flatten" that out, perhaps leaving a slight "house curve" (think home theater sub tuning).

I can always add a small "house curve" with eq, so my bass requirements are deep extension, fast, and without bloat... not necessarily copious, if you get me.

Good bass is essential to my requirements, but by no means more important than the other aspects already named. I'm looking, of course, for everything no compromises... heh.

...

I'll have a look at the Ortofon E-Q7. Thanks for the alternative suggestion.
Edited by AngryBaconGod - 5/3/11 at 9:51am
post #6 of 153

In terms of bass quality and extension from a BA I have not heard anything that bests the W4. That includes the CK10 and the e-Q7 although the latter is not a BA.

 

I don't find that the CK10 has more detail than the W4 but rather they show their details in different ways but both are just as detailed.

post #7 of 153

I have W4 - they have bloated bass - some may like it - it is like a loosy goosy bass you get from speakers powered with SET tube amps - they are very colored and I find them rolled off on top - they clearly lack air on top ...

 

That being said - I don't know what else to try before heading to Customs ...

 

They are not unpleasant to listen to - they are very pleasing - but they are coloed - not accurate - yes AKG701 recabled have been my reference - so you know where I am coming from.

 

If you are listening to mostly MP3 - W4 are heavenly - but if you are listening to uncompressed music with a quility player and amp - then you must consider others ...

 

Cheers

post #8 of 153
I have to agree with saisunil. There are some recordings in my collection that sound a little bloaty to me as well. Its a small issue with me that I alleviate by cutting the bass a bit.
post #9 of 153
Quote:
Originally Posted by saisunil View Post

I have W4 - they have bloated bass - some may like it - it is like a loosy goosy bass you get from speakers powered with SET tube amps - they are very colored and I find them rolled off on top - they clearly lack air on top ...

 

That being said - I don't know what else to try before heading to Customs ...

 

They are not unpleasant to listen to - they are very pleasing - but they are coloed - not accurate - yes AKG701 recabled have been my reference - so you know where I am coming from.

 

If you are listening to mostly MP3 - W4 are heavenly - but if you are listening to uncompressed music with a quility player and amp - then you must consider others ...

 

Cheers


No offense but this is 180 degrees away and couldn't be any further from the common perceptions by those that have posted their impressions and reviews.

I too would not call their treble airy but it is very extended and highly detailed. Bass is well textured with a combination of adequate BA speed and dynamic like decay. (Realistic bass needs some decay.) The mids are slightly forward and tilted towards a thicker note.

From what I've read (never had the CK10), the CK10 will be faster, brighter and leaner than the W4.
post #10 of 153

Do the CK10s reveal any flaws in 320kbps because they are analytical?

post #11 of 153

I have the CK10's, and they're quite excellent.  The small size is nice, and they're quite crisp.  Anything with sharp, detailed precision sounds wonderful. the bass is adequate, but not overblown.  Since the Comply's isolate so well, I tend to keep the volume really low and the bass isn't thumpy at that level.  I listen to them through my iPhone, and don't like headphones that require amping to sound good (defeats the purpose of a portable music player), so I can't speak to how they sound from a high quality source, but I have no complaints for the money with my pair.

post #12 of 153
As far as leanness is concerned I would say the CK10 with a proper fit falls in the middle of the ER-4S and the Westone 4.
Edited by RADI0HEAD - 5/3/11 at 1:15pm
post #13 of 153
Thread Starter 
I already have bloaty 'phones and am really looking for something controlled and clean.... the CK10 is certainly sounding closer to my desires...

I've considered the ER4S, but frankly it sounds like as far as usability they're more of a PITA than I need, what with the need for the triple flange and deep insertion. Not that brain tickling doesn't sound like fun, of course...
post #14 of 153

I am interested in hearing w4 owner's input on this, as I am debating on upgradin from my ck10s to 4's


 

post #15 of 153

To me there's just no comparison: I believe the CK10s are quite overrated - treble's too pronounced and bass is rather anaemic.

 

The W4 is a completely different beast - much more balanced and closer to rendering all 3 frequencies as they are found in real life.

 

To this day I'm very surprised at all the attention/ love the CK10s get and I can't help thinking |joker| has a lot to do with it as he rates the CK10s VERY highly and he's VERY influential in these forums. I like |joker| and respect the tremendous amount of effort he's put into his reviews - certainly something I can't even dream of achieving myself - but although I agree with quite a few of the things he says, there are some where I we just hear things significantly differently, namely the CK10 & SM3. 


Edited by music_4321 - 5/3/11 at 3:56pm
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