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Distinguishing Sound Quality?

post #1 of 6
Thread Starter 

I have finally moved up towards the $100+ category of IEMs and settled on getting the RE262s after considering things from the HF5 to the R-50. What concerns me is that I might not be able to appreciate the sound of these IEMs because of my lack of experience. When I first upgraded my apple earbuds to the Vsonic gr99s, I will admit, I couldn't find a significant difference at first. A few months have passed and I decided to do another A/B comparison and boy do I hear a difference now.


This time, with 120 dollars being my main motivation, I want to be able to distinguish good from bad with my FIRST listen instead of waiting for my ears to adjust and tune themselves in over the course of a few months. I would like to know methods used to accurately compare earphones and what I should be listening for so I can easily justify spending this hefty sum of money!

post #2 of 6

The most important thing is not spending more money for "the best sound" but spending as little as possible while finding "your sound."

post #3 of 6
Thread Starter 

Then there is my dilemma of only ever owning one pair of IEMs and therefore having no idea which sound signature I prefer. I'm also the kind of guy who enjoys jumping into the deep end without previous training. I guess this thread is me screaming for help after jumping in without any swimming lessons :/

post #4 of 6

Perhaps some analytical listening or appreciation tips from experienced members might be able to help you get started again faster. I am not worthy enough of giving advices, but I believe some more experienced members may chip in?

post #5 of 6

Well, the kind of music you listen to is a start. Some headphones work better for certain types than others.


Have you ever listened to music and said "Aw, I wish I could hear the vocals better." or... "The treble is kind of harsh. I like it when it's smoother." or "These sound kind of thin, or too sharp to my ears." or "Man, I wish I could hear the details more clearly."


Some people tend to prefer dynamic drivers to balanced armatures, and vice versa. You might be able to go to a store (even if it's a crappy one like best buy) and then test out some different headphones. You can write down the name and what you thought of their sound, which you likes/disliked and why.

post #6 of 6
I suggest you take a look at Head-Fi's glossary of sound. Learn what the words we use to describe sound mean then listen for those changes. Just pick one or two words a day that interest you and learn their meanings. Eventually, you'll be able to put pieces of the puzzle together hearing the differences / what an IEM is trying to tell you.


Special note to the R-50 you mentioned, I have a pair, they're one of the most detailed, spacious IEM's I have heard, their imaging and instrument separation is very accurate. With the correct source and suited genre they can really impress for the price..
Edited by H20Fidelity - 2/10/13 at 11:02pm
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