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Metal/Progressive Rock/Alternative Rock/Post Rock IEM

post #1 of 91
Thread Starter 

Hey Everybody,


I'm new the audiophile world and have been reading these forums for a while now and they have helped enormously in providing me with information on what to look for when buying headphones.


I'm wondering if you could advise me on a good pair of IEM's for listening to metal, post rock and alternative rock music. Since these genres can sometimes cover a wide variety of sub-genres, here's a list of some of my favorite bands and artists:



Dark Empire, Agalloch, Primal Fear, Savage Circus, Buckethead, Anathema, Leech, Sleep Dealer, Long Distance Calling. I also sometimes listen to classical music and rock (AC/DC, UFO, etc) but not as much as the rest.


I have read  through similar threads on this forum but started this one because I wanna try and be as specific as possible about what I want. Hope it doesn't seem redundant :)


I'm interested in IEM's that really showcase the guitar solos and riffs and provides excellent sound stage and separation with tight punchy bass (don't like anything that would sound bassy or boomy). Something that's very comfortable to wear as I'll be having them on for 4 -6 hours a day. I would prefer something that doesn't need an amplifier, however, if there's something that would fit my criteria with the addition of an amplifier then I have no problem considering it.


On a side note; I won't be able to try on any of the suggested IEM's as there aren't any high-end headphone brands available in my country.



A lot of the threads I read were recommending the FXT90 and the GR07 for these music genres but I did not like their looks.


My price range is up to $400.


Thank you all in advance.




P.S. It would be great if someone could tell me how Agalloch, in specific, sounds on their recommended IEM

post #2 of 91
Ultimate ears triple 10s or the heir audio 4ai would be my suggestion. All I listen to is metal and alternative rock and I got my triple. 10s made into customs and listen to them everyday and absolutely adore them...anathema sounds so good on triple 10s
Edited by tannerbnd - 11/25/12 at 11:07am
post #3 of 91
Thread Starter 

Hey tannerbnd. Thanks for the quick reply.


I have read more than once about some fit and comfort issues with the triple 10's. Can you tell me your opinion on that?


Never looked into the heir audio's before as they weren't recommended frequently but I gotta say I just checked them out and I loved them. But you can't customize the face plate on the 4ai's and I don't like the look of the wood face plate at all. Also, is sending your ear mold required or optional?

post #4 of 91
The comfort of the triples is weird to some people, so I went and got molds made and sent them into inearz.com. Depending how much you can find a pair of triples, you can get them customized for around 250-300(total for everything, buoying the headphone and getting customized). Also, ultimate ears just released the 900s for 400 bucks, much better fit but haven't read much about how they are with metal. I'm sure they are good and you wouldn't have to deal with the fit issues of the triples or getting them made into customs... Just a thought
Edited by tannerbnd - 11/25/12 at 1:38pm
post #5 of 91

I actually just sold my 4.Ais because I thought they weren't good with metal. Then again I don't listen to exactly the same stuff you do. I'm more into thrash/speed and older heavy metal, so that's something to keep in mind. To me the Heirs got kind of stressed with fast music and really did much better with slower stuff, preferrably acoustic. But that's my opinion. For metal I much prefer the Vsonic GR07 MKIIs and Ortofon e-Q5s I've since purchased. They have no problem keeping up with the fast stuff, and I also think that single drivers give a more coherent listening experience with that kind of music. Also they're a lot cheaper, you could probably get both for the price of the Heirs in fact.

post #6 of 91
Thread Starter 

Thanks for the feedback.


I'm looking at the UE 900 and the e-Q5 and both seem interesting.


Can anybody provide their feedback on how the UE 900, the Westone 4R and the IE80 perform with the above genres?


By the way, I just realized that I have not provided my criteria for isolation, so here goes :), I need something with very good isolation as the office background noise can be somewhat high.

Edited by myaman - 11/26/12 at 12:46am
post #7 of 91
Thread Starter 

Anyone able to provide other recommendations or thoughts on the above suggestions?

post #8 of 91
Thread Starter 


post #9 of 91

The e-Q5 would work very well with what you listen to and I think is a much better value over the UE900 with the e-Q5 costing half the UE900.  The e-Q5 has very good mids along with punchy bass and nice crisp treble that's not harsh and a spacious soundstage so that's my recommendation.

post #10 of 91
Thread Starter 

Thanks Techno Kid


What about the Westone W4 and the Westone 4R? Did you get a chance to test any of those IEM's?

post #11 of 91

The RE272 offers great midrange details and match very well for these genres music because it somehow has internal space with better imgaing and instruments separation and guitars sound so good on these. The others IEMs like Grado GR10, Sony EX1000, UE900, W4, GR07, EQ7 are also great buy under this budget for these music genres.

Edited by ZARIM - 11/28/12 at 1:34pm
post #12 of 91

Agalloch sounds very good with my JH13 Pro but they cost $1100.

post #13 of 91
Thread Starter 

Thanks ZARIM ... So basically I can't really go wrong with any of these selections. Just a matter of specific sound preference right?


pfillion ... I think those are just slightly outside my budget :)

post #14 of 91
Thread Starter 

I was looking for reviews on the Westone 4R but keep seeing people using the W4 and 4R names interchangeably so I can't really tell which reviews are specific to the 4R's.


They are two different products based on these links:








Can you guys let me know what you think?

post #15 of 91

They're the same IEM but one has a removable cable, they sound the same. 

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