just received them, listening for the first 5 minutes and no regrets!
not sure if this pair of Sunrise Xcited given to me is totally new though as the cable looks like my Xcape IE that i used for two weeks, looks straightened and used. but who cares as long as the sound is ok and the tips are new and the earphones dont give a used, sticky feel.
microphonic is higher in Xcited than Xcape IE, maybe due to tuning? although the wire looks exactly the same in thickness. (not a problem for me since i've accepted that all earphones are microphonic worn straight down)
clarity, transparency better in Xcited than in Xcape IE. Xcape IE feels a little veiled overall, this veil is removed in Xcited.
2 vent holes, 1 front 1 back of Xcited, totally 0 vent holes on Xcape IE.
separation between vocals and instruments unrealistically wide apart in Xcape IE which felt unnatural to me (having been used to congested soundstage for over a year now). soundstage back to congested on the Xcited based on a preliminary judgement of 5 min listening, need to listen and burn in more before making more precise judgement but the natural soundstage feeling is back :)
piercing at higher volumes.
but a little more sibilant than the panasonic when volume is turned up, i guess this is the payoff for slightly higher clarity, transparency at lower volume. violin and string instrument sounds are still as clear and natural if not a wee bit clearer than the panasonic which is important to me and i dont listen at such high volumes anyway unless i am in the train/public.
soundstage feels a wee bit wider(only if i purposely strain my ears to listen for them) than my panasonic rp-hje270 which is a good thing since i been wanting something just slightly above average in soundstage width. clarity, details feels a little better than the panasonic too. but sound will still be described as congested as the vocals sound like they are in your head. for me, congested and intimate are the same thing in this aspect, depending on whether you like to use a word conventionally associated with optimism or pessimism to describe it.
in the panasonic, there is always a low volume hiss even when no song is playing and this is lesser in volume for the Sunrise Xcited. (a very low volume hiss is still apparent in the Xcited with no music playing). and i attribute it to the difference in impedance between the two earphones. panasonic = 16 ohms nominal, xcited = 32 ohms nominal.
sound quality vs price exponential curve is very apparent as usual.
panasonic rp-hje270 costs $20? sunrise xcited costs $80. difference in sound quality feels very little, maybe only 5% since i am listening in the day now with normal environmental sounds, birds chirping, random airplanes fly by etc. (both sound like they have the same sound signature so it's quite a fair comparison)
mid bass as punchy and adequate in quantity as the panasonic rp-hje-270. but lacks in sub-bass (rumble) when compared to hje270.
the most obvious improvement of Xcited over rp-hje270 is lesser of low volume hiss (not sure the proper term to call it) that is constantly heard in the panasonic even when no music is playing.
Xcited and Xcape IE is not heavy in terms of weight, which is a good thing for long hour listening since the in-ear monitors wont drop out of the ear or apply a weight strain on the ears.
going back to ClieOS's ranking which i referred to before buying the Xcape IE, it is indeed true that Xcited is balanced in sound signature while Xcape IE is warm and sweet in sound signature. again confirming my preference for balanced sound signature earphones. :) good learning experience for me.
hope these info will help other readers, just as the helpful and honest users on this forum has helped me to make decisions based on their accurate and detailed description. :)
say NO to muddy, veiled sounding earphones!
Edited by pokpokgei - 2/11/13 at 3:25am