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I have a $100 giftcard to Crutchfield and I am not sure which IEM's to choose from

post #1 of 12
Thread Starter 

Hey guys, I am a beginner audiophile and don't know much about IEM's. I recently purchased a pair of Sennheiser HD598's for $249.99 from Crutchfield which came with a $100 giftcard.

 

I am looking at their selection of IEM's and would really like to choose one for ~$100. The type of music I listen to ranges from EDM to instrumentals, vocal-based acoustics, and pop. 

 

My options are:
( http://www.crutchfield.com/g_359650/In-ear-Headphones.html?showAll=N&items=2&price=70-120 )
 

ClarityOne™ EB 110 $74.99

HiFiMAN RE-0  $79.99
Sony XBA-1iP $89.99
Bose® IE2 $99.95
Denon AH-C560R $99.99

Harman Kardon NI $99.99

Klipsch Image S4i II $99.99

AKG K375  $119.99

 

I would really enjoy having a durable pair of headphones that are comfortable and will last more than a few years. If you guys could help me limit my options or let me know which pair's of IEMS I should stay away from, I would highly appreciate it!

 

Also, I currently own an Asus Xonar DG and as I am waiting for my 598's to come, I have been doing a lot of reading on amps and was wondering if I should consider using my giftcard on Crutchfield's NuForce uDAC-2 , but I've also read on this forum that I should stay away from Nuforce's amps. (The amp would be primarily for my HD 598's) The reason why I chose that amp is because it is the only headphone amp they have at the ~$100 price range.

 

Thank you for taking the time to help me out!

post #2 of 12

Out of the lot you,ve listed the RE0 would be mt preference. Stay away from the S4.

post #3 of 12

I ordered the HD598s on Amazon for $205 a few days ago, and have been doing a great deal of research of Amp/DACs.

I'm going to grab a Fiio E17 I think.
 

post #4 of 12
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gozzer View Post

Out of the lot you,ve listed the RE0 would be mt preference. Stay away from the S4.

The RE0 would suck at EDM because they're way too bass light. I would go for the Sony XBA-1iP but it has a J cord (meaning one earbud goes over the neck) so if you don't like that, go for the Klipsch S4i II, they're quite good, very fun sounding.

 

But seriously the Sony's are better :P

 

Edit: if you already have a portable headphone go for the amp.

post #5 of 12
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kimx2310 View Post

The RE0 would suck at EDM because they're way too bass light. I would go for the Sony XBA-1iP but it has a J cord (meaning one earbud goes over the neck) so if you don't like that, go for the Klipsch S4i II, they're quite good, very fun sounding.

 

But seriously the Sony's are better :P

 

Edit: if you already have a portable headphone go for the amp.

Thanks for the advice! I am definitely leaning more towards the Sony XBA-1's now.

 

My current IEM's are Sennheiser CX 150's and they are starting to crackle at the highs so I think it's time for an upgrade. Crutchfield only has two amps under $200; the NuForce uDAC-2 and Audioengine D1. I already have an Asus Xonar DG so I'm wondering if it's even worth buying an amp for my Sennheiser 598's or if my current soundcard is already good enough.

post #6 of 12
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by chimmycham View Post

I ordered the HD598s on Amazon for $205 a few days ago, and have been doing a great deal of research of Amp/DACs.

I'm going to grab a Fiio E17 I think.
 

 

What is making you choose the E17 over  other the E7, E9, or E11 (or any other DAC) for your 598's?

post #7 of 12
Quote:
Originally Posted by phhat View Post

 

What is making you choose the E17 over  other the E7, E9, or E11 (or any other DAC) for your 598's?

I've read in a few reviews that the SQ is noticeably better than the E7 and E10 which were the other 2 I was considering.

I also would not mind being able to use the 3.5mm and Optical input possibilities.

 

I no nothing about any of this though.

Plus, I've got an amp connected to my TV via optical, and this amp has a 4.55mm (1/4in) headphone jack, so honestly I guess I don't really need the optical thing.

 

I've got no idea. That's why I'm here. :)

post #8 of 12

Sony XBA-1 is not for EDM. It is mid-centric with less impressive extension in both highs and lows. While the mids are great, detailed, and clean, v-shaped signatures are better for EDM. Probably the best for you would be the PureSound ClarityOne. From memory, they were slightly v-shaped, and they're cheaper than on amazon.com by $10. They have great build quality with solid housings and a good cable. I would think that they are a great deal.

post #9 of 12
Quote:
Originally Posted by eastPride View Post

Sony XBA-1 is not for EDM. It is mid-centric with less impressive extension in both highs and lows. While the mids are great, detailed, and clean, v-shaped signatures are better for EDM. Probably the best for you would be the PureSound ClarityOne. From memory, they were slightly v-shaped, and they're cheaper than on amazon.com by $10. They have great build quality with solid housings and a good cable. I would think that they are a great deal.

Yep! The XBA line have plenty of details...

post #10 of 12
Do NOT get the k375s the quality is comparable to $10 wal-mart headphones. Muddy and muffled beyond belief. Drum sets sound like they are made of tin cans through these. Biggest disappointment I've ever had buying a product.
post #11 of 12
Quote:
Originally Posted by mikefromcali View Post

Do NOT get the k375s the quality is comparable to $10 wal-mart headphones. Muddy and muffled beyond belief. Drum sets sound like they are made of tin cans through these. Biggest disappointment I've ever had buying a product.

I have the k374s (k375 with no mic) and they don't sound bad at all. The treble is a tad bit loud but I have no other complaints. Maybe the k375s have some issues that the k374s don't, or maybe they are bad and I'm just crazy. 

post #12 of 12
Quote:
Originally Posted by mikefromcali View Post

Do NOT get the k375s the quality is comparable to $10 wal-mart headphones. Muddy and muffled beyond belief. Drum sets sound like they are made of tin cans through these. Biggest disappointment I've ever had buying a product.

 

I purchased the K375 for the sole purpose of pairing it with my iPhone when I am expecting calls but then I was happy with its performance so that I ended up trying it out with my better gear. Far from being muddy and muffled, they are warm, airy and, to my surprise, moderately open-sounding. Bass extends nicely, extension in the highs scores a pass - you can find better extensions on similarly-priced in-ears -  but what set it apart from its competition is the realism and faithfulness in its reproduction of sound from any instruments or vocals - maybe it's a matter of correct timbre. Bass is not as prominent as I feared, but still rather nicely contoured with good impact. And I don't find any problems with the drum sets - I'm a band man  and I do know how drum sets sound in real life. Of cos you can never expect in-ears to offer the depth and resonance of the drum sets as can be reproduced in larger cans, but K375 does a very admirable job, except maybe a little short of shimmer in the hi-hat.

 

I have both the Re0 and the K375. Re0 is great bang for the bucks, K375 is value for money, but rite now the Re0 is collecting dust somewhere. overall I prefer the K375 for casual listening due to its sound signature. Re0 is probably better for critical listening, but when I do want to do critical listening I got better stuff around.

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