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Calling All Etymotic Experts

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 

Preface:  Looking for a reference type IEM.  Previous Ety ownership has been 95% unamped.  Interested in P or S discusion with use 100% of time with amp.  (Ibasso T3).  Interested in actual discussion, not "just get adapter and have both."


My understanding is while the P has a bit more bass and is generally a tad warmer, the treble is slightly harsher and decay is a bit off.


S version extends treble more, has much truer decay, is cleaner sounding and the soundstage is a bit more open.


Are these statements above true?


May actually consider the S but worried about too much treble...too brite?  Also concerned if bass is less than ER4P.  I have heard many say it is actually pretty much the same.  Better soundstage and decay of S really intrigues me. 


Almost seems if you are going to go Ety and going amped, go with the real deal and get the S because it is truely better sounding?  Are the differences really that much (amped)?


Comments, corrections ,  advisement welcome.....Thx

post #2 of 7

I am actually interested in this exact question as well.

post #3 of 7

I like P and hate S etysmile.gif

ERP are very good, i was listening even hip-hop with them and was feeling happy:)

ER4S even with a good source (T51 & HFM601) were bright, thin, boring, Very airy sound, not musical, just thin sounds. Soundstage was a little bigger.

1 vote for ER4P

post #4 of 7

I owned the ER-4P with a P to S converter, and I really liked the flexibility it provided. It allowed me to use my ER-4P's with a desktop amplifier at a comfortable volume, but could also be powered straight out of my iPhone. If you're planning on using an amp 100% of the time, just get the ER-4S.

post #5 of 7


I've owned the ER-4P... twice now. And each time, I only listened to it with an amp and with the P to S converter. I've only gotten the PT version the second time around because it was cheaper with the free P to S converter thrown in. But if the ER-4S was readily available, I would have definitely picked that up, and saved myself the hassle of dealing with an extra convertor cable. 


But yeah, once you go S properly amped, you won't go back.


The major problem with the bright treble of the S depends ultimately with what amp you pair it with. That synergy thing is a bitch. I eventually grew tired of playing the matching game trying to balance dark vs bright treble, and moved on to other IEMs. Still, a first love is hard to forget about, so I found myself getting another pair to just keep on hand as a reference pair. 


The take home is, with a mellow/dark sounding amp, the ER-4S is amazing. With a brighter amp, the treble hurts. I've only dabbled in the realm of portable amps, so I don't know what the ER-4S would sound like on a truly neutral amp, but it's only a matter of boredom until I decide to throw more money at portable amps and try to find out. 

post #6 of 7


1 - Take the S version. He was born this way and that's how it should be used. The P version is a Etymotic "grant" to be used with portable equipment;
2 - This headphone is extremely dependent on a good source and amplification. With the correct setup, functions as a kind of full-size headphone with the size and appearance of an IEM. It can even be quite warm with harmless treble and good bass, simply choosing the correct setup. If this headphone sounds too bright for your taste, is a sign that the setup is not correct;
3 - I never managed to make it sounds exactly the way I like. It came close, but still missing something. Make no mistake: This headphone is very demanding and difficult to sound correct!
4 - A viable alternative would be the Westone UM3X, a sort of cousin of ER4S that works beautifully with all the sources I tried, even a Sansa Clip. Seriously consider this option, specially if you like a warm with good bass sound. Amazing headphone too.
Finally, I use my ER4S very little. However, I like to have it always available, as may appear, at any time, the setup that will raise this headphone to his real level: The paradise.
Sorry about my poor english.
post #7 of 7
I've had the P and S, sold the P and love the S. You need sufficient power, but the detail and depth are worth it.
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