Bump to say that I finally purchased a pair of C10s, and I'm very impressed, albeit with a twist.
The advantage of the C10s is that drawbacks are few, there's no bloat or inaccuracy or issues like strange vocal placement. Therefore if you are willing to EQ the hell out of it, it's not held back by those faults, and becomes something that could (to me) transcend its price tag. Not only do you bump the highest bands for clarity (in poweramp, both 8K and 16K), you can also bump the lower bands for better bass.
I was deciding between 2 IEMs: the XBA-3 for $140 and XBA-C10 for $30, they were both on sale. I personally prefer a pair of post-EQ C10s over the 3 or 30, both of which I had to EQ anyway during audition. This is not a comment on the absolute quality difference between them, but rather achieving what I want and paying far less. Yeah, 20 years of headphone shopping has impoverished me and jaded me so even $140 is a lot tyvm. I appreciate what the C10 brings to the table for $30, I mean can you imagine the IM01 becoming this cheap?
Edited by heatofamatch - 6/1/14 at 6:02am