My unburned-in CKM500 itself is already miles ahead of the microphone version. And after burning-in for more than 50 hours now, the difference is not very subtle, although there is noticeably more control in the bass and highs are also more controlled. And of course, it's much better than the microphone ver. which I tried.
It's not near A-T's top end models like CK100pro, CKW1000ANV etc., but the value of the money is very good.
Cool, thanks for comparing both versions of the ckm500s. I did not expect it to beat AT's top models, but I did hope that it would do great in its price range. The stage it presents is decent, slightly above average. The re262's stage has a bigger and deeper space than the ckm500s.
Regarding the CKM500i pair that I had tried, that was actually my sister's personal pair that I bought for her earlier as gift, because if you did read up the earlier linked review I wrote for the ATH-CKM500i over at HardwareZone forums, you would realised that I actually bought it about a month earlier so naturally it was already quite a well burnt in pair after giving it to her. Although my sister isn't as crazy as some of us here when it comes down to this hobby of my, she usually has her IEMs plugged in to her Macbook Air probably every night because she watches alot of Youtube videos and streaming dramas and stuff like that, so even when it's not out with her during the daytime on her own iPhone 4S, it certainly gets burned in properly at night through her Macbook Air with various music or videos, although with the exception that this pair wasn't burned in with the usual White/Pink noise especially if you have yr own personal beliefs that running through your gear with such files would get yr IEM/headphones burned-in "better". But honestly I don't buy that kind of analogy or theory so do pardon me, although with my personal experience I wouldn't go as far as some people out there on Head-fi who tends to label the burning in theory as simply being snake-oil or pseudo-science, as I have indeed encountered tremendous improvements with all my gears, by getting them to go through with burn-in procedures. (usually done with a mix playlist of bassy electronic music or orchestra soundtracks as I deem fit)
Also, please kindly take note that my personal impressions of the CKM500i's that I had reviewed earlier, wasn't written plainly from a mere audition of spending with them through a short 15 mins affair, I actually spent a good 3 days with them, before making my own conclusion/judgement.
Still, do appreciate the kind gesture and your advice given earlier.
Thank you for letting me know, I did check it and it was indeed a month, but I was just thinking you were busy at the time you had with the earphones. Forgive me for believing that you had a few hours of burn-in, and thank you for reviewing the ckm500s. I knew it would not beat the higher end ATs, I just thought it'd be better than the current line up of At in your opinion. To be honest I did not enjoy the ckm500s at first, and the same thing is happening with the re262s I have right now. The mids of the ckm500s do not have the clarity of the re262's, but it does have a nice, thick, lush mids wh enough detail that definately is good for the price. Now other earphones that have the same signature for the price is beyond me, and I also thought the ckm500s had a good soundstage, which is what kind of made me a bit confused on your review. Now that I have more background, I know how much time you dedicated for this cheap earphone and am glad you did, thanks for the response.