Hey, I was wondering how much people's ear canals differ? I find it hard to believe that two random people could not trade their custom molded IEMs and not have a good seal. Or am I wrong? Excuse my naivete. I'm new at this.
Custom Molds Question
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No. Hence the "custom molded" description. The mold is formed by an ear impression which covers the outer and inner ear canals/cavities.
However, universal or generic IEM that's based on the CIEM (custom) will have silicon and/or foam tips.
And... When done correctly a CIEM isolates better than a universal.
Before I bought mine I did extensive research here on head-fi and weighed the pros/cons and one of the biggest hit-or-miss issues with CIEMs is the fit. Some have to be re-fitted. Some never get it just right. I was lucky enough to get a perfect fit right out of the gate and have to say the fit and isolation is a definite step-up from my UM2 universal.
So please don't form an opinion by trying on someone else's custom because you will be disappointed.
That's the only drawback... You can't tell your friend: "Man these sound good... Try them"
I've read on here conflicting statements about CIEM isolation too which is why I wrote "when done correctly". I guess it could depend on ones ears too. YMMV as it were.
My new CIEMs isolate quite a bit better than my UM2 using comply tips.
I guess it depends on a persons experience with customs(not quanity. Quality).
I'm far from being an expert, but my 1st jump into customs has been a great one and I don't think I could go back to universals. I should have done it a long time ago.
I do feel bad for the ones that could not get theirs done just right because when done correrctly they're nothing short of awesome.
This I whole heartily agree with.
The challenge is in getting them right.
Until the Human Manufacturing Factor can be removed, It is a bit of a Crapshoot.
The specs for Etymotic sound isolation can be found here: http://www.etymotic.com/ephp/epcomp.html
Perdy Hard to Beat this level of isolation.