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Ultimate Ears UE 900 Discussion and Impressions Thread - Page 237

post #3541 of 4020
Quote:
Originally Posted by MoonYeol View Post

In my opinion. FA-4E Xb. They are pretty much rock solid, an upgrade from the UE900 in all departments. Maybe the treble is quite even but otherwise a significant upgrade. Made me rethink my UE900's value. And after I heard what the FA-4E had to offer, I felt more like the UE900 were a $200 pair of in ear monitors rather than $400. Thomann.de also has 3 years warranty. Though shipping is a bit steep when you're not in EU but they deduct taxes so that you won't pay double taxes.
Thanks for the advice, might have to look into getting a pair, am I right in thinking they don't have removable cables?
post #3542 of 4020
Quote:
Originally Posted by lawrecedent View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by MoonYeol View Post

In my opinion. FA-4E Xb. They are pretty much rock solid, an upgrade from the UE900 in all departments. Maybe the treble is quite even but otherwise a significant upgrade. Made me rethink my UE900's value. And after I heard what the FA-4E had to offer, I felt more like the UE900 were a $200 pair of in ear monitors rather than $400. Thomann.de also has 3 years warranty. Though shipping is a bit steep when you're not in EU but they deduct taxes so that you won't pay double taxes.
Thanks for the advice, might have to look into getting a pair, am I right in thinking they don't have removable cables?

2 pin standard removable. Flush sockets.
post #3543 of 4020

Just received a pair of UE900s directly from UE.  I have been less active on the Head-Fi boards in recent history because I've gotten more into speaker systems (especially tubes and vinyl), but I found myself in need of a better set of IEMs for travel and live monitoring.  I hope you'll indulge me in a few thoughts on these new phones as they compare to my much used and abused Super.fi 5 Pros (whose performance and durability prompted me to stick with UE).

 

I've only been listening for a couple of days, but here's some initial impressions:

 

Packaging/accessories:

Very nice.  Good looking box art, great box-within-a-box unpacking experience.  Tons of tips types and sizes to tune the 'phones to my head.  Two cords (one with mic and vol control).  Nice hard travel case and a pouch.  In terms of accessories, especially the cable quality, these blow away the Super.fi's as well as most other consumer electronics I've purchased in recent history.  Apple-level experience.

 

Isolation:

Still trying tips, but as good as any other IEMs I've used.  Had a couple of flights to listen to them on and they did a very good job of blocking the engine drone.  Can't hear myself typing this right now.

 

Sound:

Treble is very sweet without the graininess I sometimes get with the older UEs.  Kick drums have a lot of complexity to the harmonics and cymbals are very natural.  Good 'air' and ambience where it's in the recording.

 

Timbre in the mids is spot on.  Strings sound natural, as well as woodwinds (two of the harder things to get right, in my opinion).  Sax is especially very satisfying.

 

Bass digs deeper than the Super-Fi's.  I miss the impact of a good 12 or 15 inch driver in a properly sorted speaker rig, but that doesn't fit in my carry-on.  Still playing with tips to tune things to my liking, but it's so near ideal now that this is really an exercise in geekery.

 

Some spooky details here and there with live recordings (voices in the audience, room sounds, etc).

 

Balance is very, very good.  Always felt the mids were a bit scooped with the Super.fi's.  Even with some hardcore bluegrass, things are not getting congested.  

 

I definitely need to step up my codec game.  Mp3's sound pretty terrible up against loseless files.  

 

Durability:

I see some noise being made on the board about older revisions and repackaging, but more suspicion than substantiated fact.  I've had the Super.fi's for probably close to a decade and never experienced any issues (did replace the cord a couple times, mostly due to abuse I've inflicted).  I don't have any reason to doubt the UE900s durability at this point.  If they're up to the standard I've experienced from UE (as well as many Logitech products), I think they'll last a long time.

 

I will be using these as monitors in performance settings, too.  I do not plan to take it especially easy on them and will report back with issues.

 

Conclusion:

I used to be very into headphones (still own some Grado 325s, Senn's, and the Super.Fi's, along with amps I've built over the years).  I'm more into speaker systems now that I'm a home owner and without children.  That said, I travel a lot and I work in the music industry so I've heard a lot of audio systems (earbuds to multi-thousand watt PAs).  These are the best IEMs I've used and do some things better than my big tube amps and speakers can.  Pretty ding dang good when portability is a factor, I think.  

 

$400 is a lot for a pair of headphones, but an absolute value when you compare them to what it would cost to get the same level of balance and detail retrieval from speakers (live monitoring or home playback).  I'm very impressed with the UE900s.

 

Sources: iPod Classic, MacBook, Profire 2626, Android phone (cringe)

post #3544 of 4020
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sodacose View Post

Just received a pair of UE900s directly from UE.  I have been less active on the Head-Fi boards in recent history because I've gotten more into speaker systems (especially tubes and vinyl), but I found myself in need of a better set of IEMs for travel and live monitoring.  I hope you'll indulge me in a few thoughts on these new phones as they compare to my much used and abused Super.fi 5 Pros (whose performance and durability prompted me to stick with UE).

I've only been listening for a couple of days, but here's some initial impressions:

Packaging/accessories:
Very nice.  Good looking box art, great box-within-a-box unpacking experience.  Tons of tips types and sizes to tune the 'phones to my head.  Two cords (one with mic and vol control).  Nice hard travel case and a pouch.  In terms of accessories, especially the cable quality, these blow away the Super.fi's as well as most other consumer electronics I've purchased in recent history.  Apple-level experience.

Isolation:
Still trying tips, but as good as any other IEMs I've used.  Had a couple of flights to listen to them on and they did a very good job of blocking the engine drone.  Can't hear myself typing this right now.

Sound:
Treble is very sweet without the graininess I sometimes get with the older UEs.  Kick drums have a lot of complexity to the harmonics and cymbals are very natural.  Good 'air' and ambience where it's in the recording.

Timbre in the mids is spot on.  Strings sound natural, as well as woodwinds (two of the harder things to get right, in my opinion).  Sax is especially very satisfying.

Bass digs deeper than the Super-Fi's.  I miss the impact of a good 12 or 15 inch driver in a properly sorted speaker rig, but that doesn't fit in my carry-on.  Still playing with tips to tune things to my liking, but it's so near ideal now that this is really an exercise in geekery.

Some spooky details here and there with live recordings (voices in the audience, room sounds, etc).

Balance is very, very good.  Always felt the mids were a bit scooped with the Super.fi's.  Even with some hardcore bluegrass, things are not getting congested.  

I definitely need to step up my codec game.  Mp3's sound pretty terrible up against loseless files.  

Durability:
I see some noise being made on the board about older revisions and repackaging, but more suspicion than substantiated fact.  I've had the Super.fi's for probably close to a decade and never experienced any issues (did replace the cord a couple times, mostly due to abuse I've inflicted).  I don't have any reason to doubt the UE900s durability at this point.  If they're up to the standard I've experienced from UE (as well as many Logitech products), I think they'll last a long time.

I will be using these as monitors in performance settings, too.  I do not plan to take it especially easy on them and will report back with issues.

Conclusion:
I used to be very into headphones (still own some Grado 325s, Senn's, and the Super.Fi's, along with amps I've built over the years).  I'm more into speaker systems now that I'm a home owner and without children.  That said, I travel a lot and I work in the music industry so I've heard a lot of audio systems (earbuds to multi-thousand watt PAs).  These are the best IEMs I've used and do some things better than my big tube amps and speakers can.  Pretty ding dang good when portability is a factor, I think.  

$400 is a lot for a pair of headphones, but an absolute value when you compare them to what it would cost to get the same level of balance and detail retrieval from speakers (live monitoring or home playback).  I'm very impressed with the UE900s.

Sources: iPod Classic, MacBook, Profire 2626, Android phone (cringe)
Good to hear more love for these great earphones! Hopefully they've got their act together over build issues and they'll go the distance. Happy listening.
post #3545 of 4020
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sodacose View Post

Just received a pair of UE900s directly from UE.  I have been less active on the Head-Fi boards in recent history because I've gotten more into speaker systems (especially tubes and vinyl), but I found myself in need of a better set of IEMs for travel and live monitoring.  I hope you'll indulge me in a few thoughts on these new phones as they compare to my much used and abused Super.fi 5 Pros (whose performance and durability prompted me to stick with UE).

I've only been listening for a couple of days, but here's some initial impressions:

Packaging/accessories:
Very nice.  Good looking box art, great box-within-a-box unpacking experience.  Tons of tips types and sizes to tune the 'phones to my head.  Two cords (one with mic and vol control).  Nice hard travel case and a pouch.  In terms of accessories, especially the cable quality, these blow away the Super.fi's as well as most other consumer electronics I've purchased in recent history.  Apple-level experience.

Isolation:
Still trying tips, but as good as any other IEMs I've used.  Had a couple of flights to listen to them on and they did a very good job of blocking the engine drone.  Can't hear myself typing this right now.

Sound:
Treble is very sweet without the graininess I sometimes get with the older UEs.  Kick drums have a lot of complexity to the harmonics and cymbals are very natural.  Good 'air' and ambience where it's in the recording.

Timbre in the mids is spot on.  Strings sound natural, as well as woodwinds (two of the harder things to get right, in my opinion).  Sax is especially very satisfying.

Bass digs deeper than the Super-Fi's.  I miss the impact of a good 12 or 15 inch driver in a properly sorted speaker rig, but that doesn't fit in my carry-on.  Still playing with tips to tune things to my liking, but it's so near ideal now that this is really an exercise in geekery.

Some spooky details here and there with live recordings (voices in the audience, room sounds, etc).

Balance is very, very good.  Always felt the mids were a bit scooped with the Super.fi's.  Even with some hardcore bluegrass, things are not getting congested.  

I definitely need to step up my codec game.  Mp3's sound pretty terrible up against loseless files.  

Durability:
I see some noise being made on the board about older revisions and repackaging, but more suspicion than substantiated fact.  I've had the Super.fi's for probably close to a decade and never experienced any issues (did replace the cord a couple times, mostly due to abuse I've inflicted).  I don't have any reason to doubt the UE900s durability at this point.  If they're up to the standard I've experienced from UE (as well as many Logitech products), I think they'll last a long time.

I will be using these as monitors in performance settings, too.  I do not plan to take it especially easy on them and will report back with issues.

Conclusion:
I used to be very into headphones (still own some Grado 325s, Senn's, and the Super.Fi's, along with amps I've built over the years).  I'm more into speaker systems now that I'm a home owner and without children.  That said, I travel a lot and I work in the music industry so I've heard a lot of audio systems (earbuds to multi-thousand watt PAs).  These are the best IEMs I've used and do some things better than my big tube amps and speakers can.  Pretty ding dang good when portability is a factor, I think.  

$400 is a lot for a pair of headphones, but an absolute value when you compare them to what it would cost to get the same level of balance and detail retrieval from speakers (live monitoring or home playback).  I'm very impressed with the UE900s.

Sources: iPod Classic, MacBook, Profire 2626, Android phone (cringe)
Hopefully the UE900s sound signature doesn't differ too much from the old trusty UE900! : )
post #3546 of 4020

Thanks for the comments!  Currently in the hunt for a portable DAC that would play nice with my iPod or Android and the UE900s.  Any recommendations are very welcome.

post #3547 of 4020
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sodacose View Post

Thanks for the comments!  Currently in the hunt for a portable DAC that would play nice with my iPod or Android and the UE900s.  Any recommendations are very welcome.
Fiio e18 sounds great with my Note 3 but it's a bit of a beast size wise (ironic I know when I have Dom jolly's phone!)
post #3548 of 4020
Hi guys i just purchased these after selling my sony ex1000 and i have a set from the older batches. Serial 1242

Anyway the first thing that strikes me is the distortion at higher volumes, im not one to use extremely high volume but i sure do like to tests earphones out and i expect a quad armature set of headphones to be handling high volume with ease but the music turns to **** at high volume its really shocking, besides this issue i am having no problems at all with the iems the sound is good, lack of sub bass is noticeable but isnt an issue and mids and highs perform admirably.

I am simply using an iphone 5s and fiio e5 to boost volume. Have tones down my headphone collection massively since having kids and getting married but the sony ex1000 were starting to show signs of wear with paint chipping and cables that seem to be non existent in the real world so cant be replaced. Hence they were sold and i got these.

But this distortion guys, is it just me? I like to know the headphones are capable at any volume but just knowing they lose control when played loud is frustrating.
post #3549 of 4020
My apologies if has been discussed but scanning the whole thread is a mission, any advice would be great
post #3550 of 4020
Quote:
Originally Posted by jinx20001 View Post

Hi guys i just purchased these after selling my sony ex1000 and i have a set from the older batches. Serial 1242

Anyway the first thing that strikes me is the distortion at higher volumes, im not one to use extremely high volume but i sure do like to tests earphones out and i expect a quad armature set of headphones to be handling high volume with ease but the music turns to **** at high volume its really shocking, besides this issue i am having no problems at all with the iems the sound is good, lack of sub bass is noticeable but isnt an issue and mids and highs perform admirably.

I am simply using an iphone 5s and fiio e5 to boost volume. Have tones down my headphone collection massively since having kids and getting married but the sony ex1000 were starting to show signs of wear with paint chipping and cables that seem to be non existent in the real world so cant be replaced. Hence they were sold and i got these.

But this distortion guys, is it just me? I like to know the headphones are capable at any volume but just knowing they lose control when played loud is frustrating.

Do you own the 900 or the 900s or did you get the 900s with the new unibody (all blue shell) ?

post #3551 of 4020
Hi, its almost certainly the 900 original. I have not owned them long enough to come across any build issues yet and overall the fit and finish seems ok. Time will tell as always. As i say the only real issue for me as of now is the distortion at high volumes. Granted it really does have to be high volume i mean unbearably loud but it just suprises me they struggle at all with the power output im giving them. My music quality probably does not help but its all easily 320kbps and up aswell as lossless but i cant imagine poor quality recordings get poorer as volume is increased its just poor full stop quiet or loud so dont think its that, just seems the headphones have a limitation i have not experienced before its just so audible for an expensive set like these
post #3552 of 4020
To answer your question more closely, its not the unibody, i still have the black cable connection with the ****ty nickel plated ( i guess ) connector rather than gold plated
post #3553 of 4020
The distortion should decrease as the pinhole fills up and should be almost non existent when listing to lossless
post #3554 of 4020
Quote:
Hi guys i just purchased these after selling my sony ex1000 and i have a set from the older batches. Serial 1242

Anyway the first thing that strikes me is the distortion at higher volumes, im not one to use extremely high volume but i sure do like to tests earphones out and i expect a quad armature set of headphones to be handling high volume with ease but the music turns to **** at high volume its really shocking, besides this issue i am having no problems at all with the iems the sound is good, lack of sub bass is noticeable but isnt an issue and mids and highs perform admirably.

I am simply using an iphone 5s and fiio e5 to boost volume. Have tones down my headphone collection massively since having kids and getting married but the sony ex1000 were starting to show signs of wear with paint chipping and cables that seem to be non existent in the real world so cant be replaced. Hence they were sold and i got these.

But this distortion guys, is it just me? I like to know the headphones are capable at any volume but just knowing they lose control when played loud is frustrating.

 

The UE900 is a 30 ohm load and the Fiio e5 is rated at 100mW into a 32 ohm load (and .009% distortion at just 10mW).  Distortion will likely rise exponentially as power increases.

 

If you're diming the output, it's very likely at least some of the distortion you're hearing is from the amp. 


Edited by Sodacose - 7/25/14 at 6:33am
post #3555 of 4020
Hi thanks for the reply, it is true the distortion happens while using the amp at high volumes, and its very likely i guess that the balanced armatures used are simply putting forward the distortion as ofcourse armatures are known for highlighting weaknesses in the output from a device, i guess being 4 armatures in each earpiece simply does not help if distortion is introduced as this is amplified by the armatures, its just the first set of headphones that have really struggled when using the fiio at very high volume. Thanks for your help
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