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Dream Earz aud-5X Custom IEM Review: Pure Value @ $565 - Also the appreciation thread! - Page 36

post #526 of 596
Actually I had the 5x before I upgraded to the 8x, so I'm pretty sure that Mitch will be able to help! smily_headphones1.gif

Excited that many others are getting the 8x as well! Will get mine back from reshelling soon!
post #527 of 596
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mython View Post

Is the AUD-8X as coherent across the crossover points, between the drivers, as the Miracle, or do the 3 crossover points make themselves known - can you tell where each driver begins and ends, frequency-band-wise?

I've been using the 8X everyday since it arrived and don't sense any cohesions issues in the presentation or between the drivers. In fact, the 8X might be one of the most cohesive sounding phones (BA or otherwise) that I've heard. Being that this is a pretty complex phone (with a lot of different drivers & multiple crossovers), driver cohesions was one of the first things I looked for. After a lot of listening these last few days, the 8X has a very 'unified' feel as far as presentation.

The soundstage and imaging is excellent.. I find very nice proportionality between the three axes (depth, width, height) and there's ample space & articulate layering between all the instruments that I listening to music feels more like a live experience than some clinical exercise. Personally speaking, my ears often find IEMs that possess poor soundstage (depth/width/height) to actually become fatiguing over time... this, opposed to those that just find certain freq. characteristics (i.e. excessive bass, aggressive, harsh treble, and/or uncomfortably bright, boosted upper-mids/treble) as fatiguing. None of this is an issue with the 8X.

I've found the 8X to have a very full, smooth, neutral sound.. though it never comes across as thick, slow, or dull (anywhere in the tuning). The bass capability is simply outstanding. I listen to a lot of liquid drum & bass and the 8X delivers the fast, deep, visceral, low end (that's often found in this genre) with amazing precision, realism, & accuracy. I'd recommend pairing it with a neutral or slightly bright upstream gear. It's got enough warmth and fullness that it doesn't need upstream gear that's going to further those characteristics (unless of course, that's your preference).

Like the the 7X was inspired by the ES5, I wonder if a different phone (aside from the 6X) was the inspiration for the 8X's tuning? Average_Joe might know.. if not, I'll ask Mitch as I'm quite curious. I haven't heard the JH13 but it seems that could be a candidate... though I get the feeling it might be some other phone we haven't mentioned.

I'm also interested trying a few other custom IEMs (while keeping my IEM collection as tidy as possible) so we'll see if I keep the 8X. I certainly like it a lot and given the price, I find very little, if anything to be a glaring weakness. Most of my listening is with my full sized phones (and desktop rig), so I'm more willing to be a little adventurous with my IEM hunt (albeit, in a judicious manner).
post #528 of 596
Quote:
Originally Posted by FlySweep View Post


I've been using the 8X everyday since it arrived and don't sense any cohesions issues in the presentation or between the drivers. In fact, the 8X might be one of the most cohesive sounding phones (BA or otherwise) that I've heard.

 

Well, I compared it to Hidition NT6 and UM Miracle and was not really impressed by 8X. Just a mid level CIEM as for me. What CIEM's did you compare with 8X?


Edited by FrostIK - 4/5/13 at 5:14am
post #529 of 596
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by FrostIK View Post

Well, I compared it to Hidition NT6 and UM Miracle and was not really impressed by 8X. Just a mid level CIEM as for me. What CIEM's did you compare with 8X?

 

Technically the $400 more expensive NT6 is better than the 8X, but they also have very different sound signatures.  The 8X is more bass leaning with more forward mids while the NT6 is a good deal brighter and more spacious overall.  The note presentation is also very different as the 8X is rich and has a thicker note compared with the much more analytical NT6 note that recreates more detail and resolution.  The NT6 slices the music apart and presents every detail while the 8X feeds you the entire presentation in a musical way.  They are compliments and not competitors IMO due to the differing sound characteristics/signatures.

post #530 of 596
Quote:
Originally Posted by average_joe View Post

They are compliments and not competitors IMO due to the differing sound characteristics/signatures.

 

They sound different, that's true. But I almost can't hear differences between players and cables using 8X, It's hard to separate music instruments from orchestra. And also 8x does not have such clarity and accuracy as top CIEM's (NT6 and Miracle). I think 8x has lower resolution and not the best crossover system. I would never call it best CIEM in a world for it's coherence or something else. Just mid level CIEM as I've already said.

post #531 of 596
Quote:
Originally Posted by FrostIK View Post

Well, I compared it to Hidition NT6 and UM Miracle and was not really impressed by 8X. Just a mid level CIEM as for me. What CIEM's did you compare with 8X?

I no longer have the Miracle, but have jotted down extensive notes on it.. and used those notes to compare with the 8X. Does the 8X have as good a coherence as the Miracle? No.. but, IMO, it's close. This is one of the reasons why I think (and mentioned) that the Miracle might sound a little more refined. In the time I've spent with the 8X, I haven't found it to having any glaring weakness as far as coherence. I don't sense 'dead spots' or unnatural tone in various places in the FQ spectrum.

The Miracle images well, but sometimes, it's almost too spacious in that it can recess the midrange and make certain instruments/sounds feel unnaturally distant. I don't get that sense with the 8X.

I haven't heard the NT6.. but I've read quite a bit about since as it interests me.
post #532 of 596
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by FrostIK View Post

They sound different, that's true. But I almost can't hear differences between players and cables using 8X, It's hard to separate music instruments from orchestra. And also 8x does not have such clarity and accuracy as top CIEM's (NT6 and Miracle). I think 8x has lower resolution and not the best crossover system. I would never call it best CIEM in a world for it's coherence or something else. Just mid level CIEM as I've already said.

 

I haven't tried aftermarket cables with the 8X yet, but I noticed it sounds better from my modded iPod -> Lear FSM-02 V2 and the Leckerton UHA-6S MKII used as a DAC/amp than the DX100, which is unusual.  I find the 8X to be sufficiently detailed and more detailed than the Alclair RSM or Lime Ears LE-3, both of which are not too far off in price (about $700).  The detail of the 8X is not presented in the same way that it is in the NT-6 or others such as the JH16, IERM, and Lear LCM-5, but more similarly to the SE5, 8.A, or PRM.  However, the 8X has a thicker presentation average note than the SE5, 8.A, or PRM, which can hide the detail relative to the others.  This is more prominent with the lower midrange on down.

 

I can't compare with the Miracle, just the PP6, and while the PP6 is in another league (as is the NT-6, no argument there), the PP6 doesn't have the detail level or clarity of the NT-6 either, yet cost more.  

 

Putting it into perspective, the 8X is an excellent performer given the sound signature and sonic traits.  If you want the clearest, cleanest CIEM in the price range, the 8X isn't it as it has a neutral presentation with a thicker note that adds a richness that musicians like (Mitch is a performing musician) and is still good for many on head-fi.  If you are moving up from something such as the UE900, chances are you will be very happy with the 8X and think it is well worth it, but if you are downgrading, from the NT-6, you will hear it, especially in direct A/B.  And that last comment isn't meant to put a negative connotation on the 8X, but I am calling it like it is.  

 

The NT-6 can compete with the most expensive CIEMs I have heard and it offers great value for the money, if you like the sound signature.  Someone recently asked me if the NT-6 is right for them, and they said they were sensitive to treble.  I would stay away from the NT-6 if you are sensitive to treble, unless you want to EQ (the quality is excellent, but the quantity is very high).

 

Bottom line, from what I have heard, the 8X represents a very good value for people in the US looking to buy local, want a neutral/richer sound, and are moving up or looking for a compliment to an existing CIEM, such as the i9pro or AM4.

post #533 of 596

After 1 year of using the AUD-5X, I am no less satisfied.

 

My source and amp have undergone numerous upgrades, with which the 5X has scaled very well. My tastes have gravitated towards colored neutrality however, causing me to send them off for a AUD-8X makeover.

 

Upon proper listening, impressions will follow...  

 

Edit: Flysweep's impressions and Joes snippets, have been pivotal in this decision. Thanks to both of you!


Edited by Nulliverse - 5/30/13 at 2:18pm
post #534 of 596
Originally Posted by Nulliverse View Post

After 1 year of using the AUD-5X, I am no less satisfied.

 

My source and amp have undergone numerous upgrades, with which the 5X has scaled very well. My tastes have gravitated towards colored neutrality however, causing me to send them off for a AUD-8X makeover.

 

Upon proper listening, impressions will follow...  

 

Edit: Flysweep's impressions and Joes snippets, have been pivotal in this decision. Thanks to both of you!

 

Very nice, Nulliverse.. I've since sold my AUD-8X.. and it might be the first custom I actually regret selling (heck, I was regretting the decision during the sale!).  I really love(d) it and found it to scale incredibly well with HQ (dedicated) upstream gear.  Having owned/upgraded through the 5X, 6X & 7X previously, I thought the 8X was head and shoulders above the others in terms of freq. balance & cohesiveness. I thought it sounded great from a DAP, but it truly shines with a nice DAC & amp.  On many occasions, it felt as close as I've heard to the Senn HD600's lovely signature.

 

Looking forward to your thoughts on it.

post #535 of 596

Right on Nulliverse, how much is Mitch charging you for the upgrade? I'm considering the jump from my 7X to an 8X.

post #536 of 596
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nulliverse View Post

After 1 year of using the AUD-5X, I am no less satisfied.

 

My source and amp have undergone numerous upgrades, with which the 5X has scaled very well. My tastes have gravitated towards colored neutrality however, causing me to send them off for a AUD-8X makeover.

 

Upon proper listening, impressions will follow...  

 

Edit: Flysweep's impressions and Joes snippets, have been pivotal in this decision. Thanks to both of you!

 

Way to go, I don't think you will be disappointed!  You can see more thoughts here.  I know, I know, I need to finish my 8X review.  It is really a very good CIEM that deserves plenty of attention.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by FlySweep View Post

Very nice, Nulliverse.. I've since sold my AUD-8X.. and it might be the first custom I actually regret selling (heck, I was regretting the decision during the sale!).  I really love(d) it and found it to scale incredibly well with HQ (dedicated) upstream gear.  Having owned/upgraded through the 5X, 6X & 7X previously, I thought the 8X was head and shoulders above the others in terms of freq. balance & cohesiveness. I thought it sounded great from a DAP, but it truly shines with a nice DAC & amp.  On many occasions, it felt as close as I've heard to the Senn HD600's lovely signature.

 

Looking forward to your thoughts on it.

 

Sorry if you already posted, but why did you sell it?  Would you buy it again?

post #537 of 596
Originally Posted by average_joe View Post

Way to go, I don't think you will be disappointed!  You can see more thoughts here.  I know, I know, I need to finish my 8X review.  It is really a very good CIEM that deserves plenty of attention.

 

Sorry if you already posted, but why did you sell it?  Would you buy it again?

 

Nice impressions, Joe.. I feel like I've got a good idea of what those RSMs sound like now, too.  One thing I vividly remember about the 8X is how easy it was to listen to for extended periods of time.  I don't mean that just because of the smooth signature.. it's because of the excellent dynamics and ample soundstage.  That, combined with the richness, made for a smooth, but immersive, lively listening experience.  A lot of monitor-inspired phones fall victim to their pro-sensibilities and can sound boring and a bit sterile after some time (when used for casual/audiophile listening).. the 8X manages to skirt that tendency and keep you engaged while presenting the music in an accurate, musical manner.

 

I sold my 8x to help offset the cost of the HD800.  I clearly lack self restraint, though.. since I just purchased the JH13Pro this past weekend.  While I would consider buying the 8X again, it wouldn't be for a while.  Looking forward to your full review of the 8X when it's ready (sooner than later, hopefully!).

post #538 of 596

ooo I'd love some comparisons to the JH13. From all the raving reviews I'm assuming they blow them out of the water haha

post #539 of 596
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by FlySweep View Post

 

Nice impressions, Joe.. I feel like I've got a good idea of what those RSMs sound like now, too.  One thing I vividly remember about the 8X is how easy it was to listen to for extended periods of time.  I don't mean that just because of the smooth signature.. it's because of the excellent dynamics and ample soundstage.  That, combined with the richness, made for a smooth, but immersive, lively listening experience.  A lot of monitor-inspired phones fall victim to their pro-sensibilities and can sound boring and a bit sterile after some time (when used for casual/audiophile listening).. the 8X manages to skirt that tendency and keep you engaged while presenting the music in an accurate, musical manner.

 

I sold my 8x to help offset the cost of the HD800.  I clearly lack self restraint, though.. since I just purchased the JH13Pro this past weekend.  While I would consider buying the 8X again, it wouldn't be for a while.  Looking forward to your full review of the 8X when it's ready (sooner than later, hopefully!).

 

Thanks!  I am sure your understanding of the RSM is in part due to your familiarity with the 8X, but the RSM tweeter is being reworked/improved.  

 

OK, I understand the reasoning for selling, and I too want to know how you think the FP would compare with the 8X.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by anoxy View Post

ooo I'd love some comparisons to the JH13. From all the raving reviews I'm assuming they blow them out of the water haha

post #540 of 596
Quote:
Originally Posted by FlySweep View Post

 

Very nice, Nulliverse.. I've since sold my AUD-8X.. and it might be the first custom I actually regret selling (heck, I was regretting the decision during the sale!).  I really love(d) it and found it to scale incredibly well with HQ (dedicated) upstream gear.  Having owned/upyour graded through the 5X, 6X & 7X previously, I thought the 8X was head and shoulders above the others in terms of freq. balance & cohesiveness. I thought it sounded great from a DAP, but it truly shines with a nice DAC & amp.  On many occasions, it felt as close as I've heard to the Senn HD600's lovely signature.

 

Looking forward to your thoughts on it.

 

Yes, I saw your sales field when it went up.... indeed, it was the first thing that came up in my daily "AUD-8X review" google searches. I understand your reasons. Hell, I was heavily researching my next CIEM purchase the day after I sent my 5X off. Tis the nature of the hobby after all!

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by anoxy View Post

Right on Nulliverse, how much is Mitch charging you for the upgrade? I'm considering the jump from my 7X to an 8X.

 

For returning customers, $250. That price, however, was from 5X to 8X. I imagine it'd be less from 7X to 8X, as Mitch'll be sourcing less drivers. The icing on the cake was the offer of a proper customized waterproof case, for just $20.    

 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by average_joe View Post

 

Way to go, I don't think you will be disappointed!  You can see more thoughts here.  I know, I know, I need to finish my 8X review.  It is really a very good CIEM that deserves plenty of attention.

 

 

I've read those thoughts plenty of times, as well as those in your main thread. Like I said, they were crucial to my decision. No pressure regarding the review. We're all aware you've a mountain of other reviews to churn out, not to mention a life to live outside head-fi ;-) 

 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by FlySweep View Post

I sold my 8x to help offset the cost of the HD800.  I clearly lack self restraint, though.. since I just purchased the JH13Pro this past weekend.  While I would consider buying the 8X again, it wouldn't be for a while.  Looking forward to your full review of the 8X when it's ready (sooner than later, hopefully!).

 

 

Our sig preferences are as similar as ever Flysweep - that's a CIEMs I'm watching eagerly atm. In fact, the only thing I'm more interested in more - and perhaps more likely to purchase - is the LS8+. Looking forward to your impressions!

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