Hi there guys,
I am new to this forum and I stand here humbly asking for your valuable opinion.
My first and only pair of headphones were Skullcandy Skull Crushers (I know, I'm sorry, but I was still a teenager then.. :P), have had them for 6 years, they finally started to crap out, so time to move on.
I almost fell for the beats by dre, but I'm not the wealthiest man so before I spend my money on luxuries I always force myself to hold off for at least a few weeks, during which I do as much research as I can.
Not surprisingly I found very compelling evidences online suggesting that beats by dre are mostly cosmetic and branding, and I also stumbled upon this site (thank god).
Reading through a lot of posts and threads from this website (which by the way, opened my eyes and ears) I am very sold on switching from over the ear headphones to IEMs and I have my heart set on either the SHURE SE series or the SONY XBA series.
In my country they are priced as the following:
SE-425-----$399 (my absolute budget limit)
XBA4--------$400 (my absolute budget limit)
The reason I can't choose between the two is because my limited knowledge tells me that, the more speakers you have in your setup (in this case, in each ear piece), the less frequency range each speaker will have to produce, therefore resulting in better sound (that is why we have sub-woofers for bass and tweeters for highs right?)-----------going by this rule, I shall choose the XBA4, which for the same price packs twice the number of BA drivers as SE-425.
But my head is also telling me that Sony is a big brand and I am paying for the branding (not as bad as beats by dre, but still to a certain degree), which is the last thing I want to spend money on, also I really liked the detachable cable and the ergonomic design of the SE series---------the Sony SE series doesn't look very good nor comfortable to me.
I came across a few posts/threads in this forum, saying that people choose the XBA3 over XBA4 because XBA3 sounds better while being cheaper, others kept banging on about how good SE-535 is, which is out of my reach, but the SE-425 is, just.
I am a mechatronics engineer, so I understand frequency response graphs and various other graphics you guys use, but that just adds more confusion-------should I go for the numbers or other people's experiences?
The bottom line: I am very overwhelmed and I don't know which to choose, so I hope you guys can help, put yourselves in my shoes: which one would you pick? I would also like to stress that while $400 is my limit, I would rather spend less than that, I am not rich after all.
* It is NOT possible for me to audition these IEMs, I have to purchase them online.
* I really like the detachable wires of the SE series, and their ergonomic design.
* My only reference point is my Skull Crushers, which I guess is not very good.
* I auditioned the beats by dre studio, solo HD and the Pro, I was blown away by the studio.
* I auditioned the Skullcandy roc nation aviator as well, I was not very impressed by them, to me they have a very V shaped sound signature.
* I listen to a bit of everything, with a bit more emphasis on pop rock I guess, top hit songs that you hear on radio, but I also enjoy classical as well as all other music :D
* I play all my music through my ipod touch 4th Gen. I will make sure the source is ripped "lost-less" once I have got the new headphones.
Thanks for your time and help.