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What's all this "best IEM for rock / pop / bang" nonsense?

post #1 of 5
Thread Starter 

I see a lot of threads here where the OP tries to solicit opinions on what phones are best for him / her based on the music they listen to--as if that will be of any help?

 

Mastering engineers for music of ALL genres master music to sound best on reference equipment.  For the most part this reference equipment is the same for all genres--studio monitors tuned to flat frequency response, in a well-treated studio room.  The main difference might be between "audiophile" genres, where the reference tends toward a system with ideal reproduction characteristics, and "consumer" genres, where the reference might tend more towards what the masses actually own--car audio and iBuds?  In which case I admit I don't know exactly how the engineer might bias the music.  More bass to compensate for bass rolloff of mainstream equipment?  LESS bass to compensate for all the people using Beats to listen to their music?  The point is that for ALL genres there is a reference sound system that sounds best with the music and how that reference sounds like has little to do with what the music sounds like.

 

Say you listen to dubstep.  You don't need phones that emphasize the bass (compared to the reference system), because overwhelming bass is already cooked into the music and listening to it through bass-boosted phones would mean you hear nothing *but* the bass.  You don't need phones that de-emphasize the bass (compared to the reference system), because the bass in this genre is MEANT to be overwhelming and trying to listen to all the treble details in dubstep would be kind of missing the point.

 

Say you listen to hard rock.  You don't need phones that V-shaped response (compared to the reference system) so that the guitars and drums almost overwhelm the shouting singer, because the music is already cooked like that and using V-shaped phones would mean the instruments completely overwhelm the singer.  You don't need mid-centric phones (compared to the reference system) to bring the vocals forward, because the vocals aren't MEANT to be forward.

 

I think it would be much more useful to list the phones you already own (no matter how low-fi) and describe what you find missing from them compared to your ideal.  For example, if you own AT CKM50s and find their mids lacking, that tells us you need more balanced phones (because they *are* V-shaped).  On the other hand, if you still find vocals too forward, you need something even *more* V-shaped.

 

The only useful thing about describing the music you listen to, as far as I can tell, would be if you tell us *how* you like to listen to the music you listen to, if that happens to be peculiar.  For example, if you listen to dubstep but DON'T like overwhelming bass, that tells us you need something at least as bass-light as the ER-4 tongue.gif If you listen to rock but like forward vocals, that probably means one of the more forward Shures is for you.

post #2 of 5
Quote:
Originally Posted by Joe Bloggs View Post

I see a lot of threads here where the OP tries to solicit opinions on what phones are best for him / her based on the music they listen to--as if that will be of any help?

 

Mastering engineers for music of ALL genres master music to sound best on reference equipment.  For the most part this reference equipment is the same for all genres--studio monitors tuned to flat frequency response, in a well-treated studio room.  The main difference might be between "audiophile" genres, where the reference tends toward a system with ideal reproduction characteristics, and "consumer" genres, where the reference might tend more towards what the masses actually own--car audio and iBuds?  In which case I admit I don't know exactly how the engineer might bias the music.  More bass to compensate for bass rolloff of mainstream equipment?  LESS bass to compensate for all the people using Beats to listen to their music?  The point is that for ALL genres there is a reference sound system that sounds best with the music and how that reference sounds like has little to do with what the music sounds like.

 

Say you listen to dubstep.  You don't need phones that emphasize the bass (compared to the reference system), because overwhelming bass is already cooked into the music and listening to it through bass-boosted phones would mean you hear nothing *but* the bass.  You don't need phones that de-emphasize the bass (compared to the reference system), because the bass in this genre is MEANT to be overwhelming and trying to listen to all the treble details in dubstep would be kind of missing the point.

 

Say you listen to hard rock.  You don't need phones that V-shaped response (compared to the reference system) so that the guitars and drums almost overwhelm the shouting singer, because the music is already cooked like that and using V-shaped phones would mean the instruments completely overwhelm the singer.  You don't need mid-centric phones (compared to the reference system) to bring the vocals forward, because the vocals aren't MEANT to be forward.

 

I think it would be much more useful to list the phones you already own (no matter how low-fi) and describe what you find missing from them compared to your ideal.  For example, if you own AT CKM50s and find their mids lacking, that tells us you need more balanced phones (because they *are* V-shaped).  On the other hand, if you still find vocals too forward, you need something even *more* V-shaped.

 

The only useful thing about describing the music you listen to, as far as I can tell, would be if you tell us *how* you like to listen to the music you listen to, if that happens to be peculiar.  For example, if you listen to dubstep but DON'T like overwhelming bass, that tells us you need something at least as bass-light as the ER-4 tongue.gif If you listen to rock but like forward vocals, that probably means one of the more forward Shures is for you.


Well, I guess many hear are really confused about what to get, so their best bet is to ask questions here and hope anyone who have heard the 2 IEMs they are stuck between that can help them. You don't need earphones with a sound signature specially for the music you listen to, but then again, many are afraid it won't fit them, so finding one best for their favourite genres is their best bet. 

 

post #3 of 5
Thread Starter 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jeremypsp View Post


Well, I guess many hear are really confused about what to get, so their best bet is to ask questions here and hope anyone who have heard the 2 IEMs they are stuck between that can help them. You don't need earphones with a sound signature specially for the music you listen to, but then again, many are afraid it won't fit them, so finding one best for their favourite genres is their best bet. 

 



Well I can understand people asking for advice about which phones to get, that's a big part of what this forum is about, but like I said I don't think there's any such thing as best earphones for a particular genre.  Rather I think there's best earphones for YOUR particular ears, and those phones would be best for you for pretty much all genres, except maybe for the audiophile / consumer genres divide I mentioned, and subject to any peculiar sonic signature preferences you may have for each particular genre you listen to.

 

So like I said I think a much better way to ask for advice regarding which headphones to get would be to describe the perceived shortcomings in whatever phones one has right now, and perhaps to mention specific sonic preferences one has when listening to the genres one listens to.  Like I said I think listing the genres you listen to is pretty much useless, it's how you like to listen to said genres that matters and everyone is different in this regard.  So much so that for the same genre one person may prefer Beats while another person may prefer Etys. etysmile.gif

post #4 of 5
Quote:
Originally Posted by Joe Bloggs View Post

 



Well I can understand people asking for advice about which phones to get, that's a big part of what this forum is about, but like I said I don't think there's any such thing as best earphones for a particular genre.  Rather I think there's best earphones for YOUR particular ears, and those phones would be best for you for pretty much all genres, except maybe for the audiophile / consumer genres divide I mentioned, and subject to any peculiar sonic signature preferences you may have for each particular genre you listen to.

 

So like I said I think a much better way to ask for advice regarding which headphones to get would be to describe the perceived shortcomings in whatever phones one has right now, and perhaps to mention specific sonic preferences one has when listening to the genres one listens to.  Like I said I think listing the genres you listen to is pretty much useless, it's how you like to listen to said genres that matters and everyone is different in this regard.  So much so that for the same genre one person may prefer Beats while another person may prefer Etys. etysmile.gif


Well, I agree that there isn't a best earphone for a particular genre, but most people have a budget and hope that people can recommend good IEMs within that budget to the best there is. Also, not everyone seems to know what sound signature they prefer, so it is really hard to say. I guess it's more of "no choice" kind of thing. But I guess what you say is mostly right. 

 

post #5 of 5

FitEar's Sakamoto Moene(google lol) http://fitear.jp/monet/profile/index.html Fitear Monet is FitEar's new IEM for anisong, anime and whatever. Fujiya Avic's impressions on the sound here

http://www.fujiya-avic.jp/blog/?p=7391 Seeing their clients, I'm not surprised if they can pull it off with their client's participation(if any) :) I need the resolution to watch H, so I think this will be the perfect IEM for me :P Bump up for old thread :P


Edited by firev1 - 10/23/12 at 5:53am
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