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Ultimate Ears UE 900 Discussion and Impressions Thread - Page 30

post #436 of 4281
Quote:
Originally Posted by average_joe View Post

 

Thanks for the great comparisons.  What ear tips were you using and did you find the bass response change much with different ear tips?  Thanks.

 

Here are the tips used with each headphone:

  • UE900: Comply Foam (S) 
  • W4R: Stock Grey (S)
  • PFE232: Stock Silicone (S)
  • 3.Ai: Blue Silicone (S)

 

I got as good as a seal with the small silicones as I did with comply with the UE900 (my preference then goes towards the silicone over foam if they both provide the same seal).  With the W4, I do have bullet tips, the Greys provide more bass and don't lose seal.  The bullet tips lose seal with movement, otherwise, they retain their seal when sitting (I still lose depth with them though :().  I got a better seal with the silicone on the 232 over the Comply Foam (included).  3.Ai, the tips make a big difference.  I chose the one that provided not only the best bass response, but also the best overall sound (blues worked the best for me).  Please note that I test all seals against the Sensaphonics Seal Test.  

 

Really, there were only two IEMs where the tips made big changes in the bass (for me anyway), the W4 and the 3.Ai.  

 

If anyone does want me to, I can swap the tips on my W4 and do a comparison when I have time again.  Bass response (and depth) goes down though, but midrange is improved.  


Edited by tinyman392 - 9/9/12 at 10:22pm
post #437 of 4281
Quote:
Originally Posted by tinyman392 View Post

 

Here are the tips used with each headphone:

  • UE900: Comply Foam (S) 
  • W4R: Stock Grey (S)
  • PFE232: Stock Silicone (S)
  • 3.Ai: Blue Silicone (S)

 

I got as good as a seal with the small silicones as I did with comply with the UE900 (my preference then goes towards the silicone over foam if they both provide the same seal).  With the W4, I do have bullet tips, the Greys provide more bass and don't lose seal.  The bullet tips lose seal with movement, otherwise, they retain their seal when sitting (I still lose depth with them though :().  I got a better seal with the silicone on the 232 over the Comply Foam (included).  3.Ai, the tips make a big difference.  I chose the one that provided not only the best bass response, but also the best overall sound (blues worked the best for me).  Please note that I test all seals against the Sensaphonics Seal Test.  

 

Really, there were only two IEMs where the tips made big changes in the bass (for me anyway), the W4 and the 3.Ai.  

 

If anyone does want me to, I can swap the tips on my W4 and do a comparison when I have time again.  Bass response (and depth) goes down though, but midrange is improved.  

 

Thanks for the details and that does make sense.  I often wonder what would happen if products were reviewed with only the stock ear tips.  I know for me it would be problematic and I wonder how the non-head-fi population deals with it.

post #438 of 4281
hi thanks for the great comparisons. looks like the pfe 232's will be more up my alley for a slightly fun but detailed sound. now to wait for the ue900 vs 4ai's to decide what neutral iem I want. Then to decide which one to buy first. can't afford both. frown.gif thanks again. smily_headphones1.gif
post #439 of 4281

thats me sold on the ue900 tongue.gif

post #440 of 4281
Quote:
Originally Posted by average_joe View Post

 

Thanks for the details and that does make sense.  I often wonder what would happen if products were reviewed with only the stock ear tips.  I know for me it would be problematic and I wonder how the non-head-fi population deals with it.

 

LOL, I'm generally able to normally get a good fit with stock tips.  There are a few I can't, but most I can ;)

post #441 of 4281

I've alwys found that foam tips can rob a bit of apparent bass amplitude while still providing a seal. The tip thing really does make these comparisons difficult. Still very welcome.bigsmile_face.gif

post #442 of 4281

UE900 looks awesome!!! I guess the review article against  W4 and 4a.i would be more interesting to TF10 loversbiggrin.gif

this is going to drive me nuts..
 

post #443 of 4281

I've alwys found that foam tips can rob a bit of apparent bass amplitude while still providing a seal. The tip thing really does make these comparisons difficult. Still very welcome.bigsmile_face.gif

.......

 

Excellent point. Comparisons should be done using the same tip style across the field of candidates, preferably silicon.  Foam tips seem to assume the shape of the inner ear canal more so than silicon and actually create a new and unintended/smaller aperture at earphone exit thus damaging/attenuating the high frequency content of the unit.

 

My subjective listening experience is that the ue900 edges out the westone 4 in high frequency content, imaging, stereo field and extension...also that the westone has a hyped lower mid/upper bass response that actually obfuscates some frequencies....the ue900 extends lower in the sub-bass region...say below 60Hz than does the Westone.

 

Of course, we all have different listening cues and points of interest....just my 0.02

post #444 of 4281
Quote:
Originally Posted by PorkStore View Post

I've alwys found that foam tips can rob a bit of apparent bass amplitude while still providing a seal. The tip thing really does make these comparisons difficult. Still very welcome.bigsmile_face.gif

.......

 

Excellent point. Comparisons should be done using the same tip style across the field of candidates, preferably silicon.  Foam tips seem to assume the shape of the inner ear canal more so than silicon and actually create a new and unintended/smaller aperture at earphone exit thus damaging/attenuating the high frequency content of the unit.

 

My subjective listening experience is that the ue900 edges out the westone 4 in high frequency content, imaging, stereo field and extension...also that the westone has a hyped lower mid/upper bass response that actually obfuscates some frequencies....the ue900 extends lower in the sub-bass region...say below 60Hz than does the Westone.

 

Of course, we all have different listening cues and points of interest....just my 0.02

 

My impressions were different (not that your's are wrong).  With the W4, a slight change in seal can make a big difference.  I found the W4 to do better in regards to depth and extension (bass and treble respectively).  I'll agree with the mid-bass comment though, it can cause a veil which can be problematic.  I will also agree 100% with imaging, that's one thing I never went over in my comparisons.  The 900s aren' the best with this, but does an ample job with soundstage.  

post #445 of 4281

I'm curious about source and music used for the comparison.
 

post #446 of 4281
Quote:
Originally Posted by doublea71 View Post

I'm curious about source and music used for the comparison.
 

 

Source is my iPod Touch 4G with 256 AAC.  No amps or anything of that nature.  Music types were generally alternative, country, rock.  Basically, my iPod was on shuffle, I listened to a few songs with each headphone twice (swapping the comparitor and comparitee) jotted down comments.  Repeated to confirm with a different song.  I tried to find songs that contained a wide band of the FR spectrum (not always possible).  Listening was done around 70-75 dB.


Edited by tinyman392 - 9/10/12 at 8:25am
post #447 of 4281

My impressions were different (not that your's are wrong).  With the W4, a slight change in seal can make a big difference.  I found the W4 to do better in regards to depth and extension (bass and treble respectively).  I'll agree with the mid-bass comment though, it can cause a veil which can be problematic.  I will also agree 100% with imaging, that's one thing I never went over in my comparisons.  The 900s aren' the best with this, but does an ample job with soundstage.  

 

-------------------------

All good....there are many variables including listening cues and style of music; these things can be very subjective and I think we all allow for that. In this case, however, I'm not referencing the "seal" aspect of the foam vs silicon....I'm referencing the acoustic effect that foam creates by actually slightly closing down over the exit port of the earphone exit port....Foam tips are, well, more compliant in a word and they do tend to affect the high frequency content. I believe a careful and sustained test between foam and silicon on the ue900 will show the differences...subtle perhaps, but they are worth noting. 

 

It would also be good to post the 3 - 5 songs used in the shoot-out so we can understand the level of recording of those songs and even standardize on a set of songs with known, excellent masters, from which to judge from....otherwise it is difficult to align with each other's impressions. 

 

An FFT of my kick drum reveals that it has most energy at 47Hz....and I can definitely better hear my kick drum low frequency push on the ue900 than on the westone 4....sure the westone 4 gives an impression of greater energy because of it's hyped lower mids which adds to kick drum content, but it surely does not reproduce the 47Hz center frequency of my Tama kick (with Kick port folks, just sayin) as the ue900 does.  

post #448 of 4281
Quote:
Originally Posted by PorkStore View Post

My impressions were different (not that your's are wrong).  With the W4, a slight change in seal can make a big difference.  I found the W4 to do better in regards to depth and extension (bass and treble respectively).  I'll agree with the mid-bass comment though, it can cause a veil which can be problematic.  I will also agree 100% with imaging, that's one thing I never went over in my comparisons.  The 900s aren' the best with this, but does an ample job with soundstage.  

 

-------------------------

All good....there are many variables including listening cues and style of music; these things can be very subjective and I think we all allow for that. In this case, however, I'm not referencing the "seal" aspect of the foam vs silicon....I'm referencing the acoustic effect that foam creates by actually slightly closing down over the exit port of the earphone exit port....Foam tips are, well, more compliant in a word and they do tend to affect the high frequency content. I believe a careful and sustained test between foam and silicon on the ue900 will show the differences...subtle perhaps, but they are worth noting. 

 

It would also be good to post the 3 - 5 songs used in the shoot-out so we can understand the level of recording of those songs and even standardize on a set of songs with known, excellent masters, from which to judge from....otherwise it is difficult to align with each other's impressions. 

 

An FFT of my kick drum reveals that it has most energy at 47Hz....and I can definitely better hear my kick drum low frequency push on the ue900 than on the westone 4....sure the westone 4 gives an impression of greater energy because of it's hyped lower mids which adds to kick drum content, but it surely does not reproduce the 47Hz center frequency of my Tama kick (with Kick port folks, just sayin) as the ue900 does.  

 

Unfortunately, my iPod was on shuffle, so the songs were really randomized.  Each comparison utilizing different sets of songs.  I don't have any "goto" songs that I use to test bass, etc.  It's really luck of the draw I guess.  I do understand why people would be against the way I do it (in this way), but I do have ideas behind it.  All that said, I don't remember the 12 songs I used last night for the 900s and the 15 I used for the 3.Ai (3 were the same as I used the same comparison between the 3.Ai and UE900 on both threads).  

 

I do see why people would want to know the songs, but myself, I have the idea that it shouldn't matter what song was used (to an extent).  It is kind of goes hand in hand with my opinion about "goto" songs for bass, mids, etc.  No one listens to one song, they listen to a mixed variety.  The circumstances of the listening should be dealt similarly.  Essentially, we don't listen to 3 songs over and over again, the 3 used were random and for testing purposes.  If I were to try, I could reproduce the same results several times using the same conditions.  That last point is what I find more important than listing a list of songs.  That you can reproduce the results with just about any set of songs.  

 

I understand if you don't agree with my philosophy behind this, but it is how I do my testing and reviewing.  My critical listening is done by luck of the draw.  Obviously, if I'm listening for treble splashes (higher highs), I won't choose an acoustic song that doesn't tell the whole story (or any for that matter of the part of the spectrum).  But that acoustic may give insight into the lower mids, mids, part of the high mids, sub-bass, and maybe even mid-bass (or low-bass).  


Edited by tinyman392 - 9/10/12 at 8:58am
post #449 of 4281

thanks for your impressions. so you wont say, that they give some subbassrumble?

post #450 of 4281
Quote:
Originally Posted by sofastreamer View Post

thanks for your impressions. so you wont say, that they give some subbassrumble?

 

The UE900s don't rumble per-say.  They dig deep, but the bass isn't fluid enough to create a rumble effect (partly due to the body size of the 900).  

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