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IEMs for subway isolation - incoming AND outgoing

post #1 of 5
Thread Starter 

I’ve been researching IEMs for a daily NYC subway commute but came across a snag.


I have wide taste. I mostly listen to alternative rock or techno (so I do like the bass) but will sometime vary as far as classical. The last three years I’ve been content with my Denon AH-C551 with Comfy tips.  However, they finally died (lost sound in one ear) and I am ready to step up to something that can offer even better sound quality over a wider range of music (with the emphasis still on rock!)


An amp is not an option for me, so they must be driven by a dedicated mp3 player or android smartphone playing hi-end mp3s.  (Controls, mic, etc. are not required.)  My budget is $150 preferred but as much as $200 max.


However, for me outgoing isolation is just as important as incoming isolation.  I want to listen at a decent volume (though not blasting) without subjecting the person next to me to my music selection.


My research has me leaning towards the GR07, but I'm concerned because I read these use a dynamic driver and that on such units the small vents in the housing allow more sound to escape.  And while this might, debatably, provide a more airy sound quality, could this also be less suitable for outgoing isolation?  It’s possible I did not research deep enough, but I could not find an answer to this question.


Any insight, links, assistance, or even recommendations would be greatly appreciated...

post #2 of 5

I have a similar scenario to you.


Leaning towards the Shure SE215. 


The TDK BA200 get strong reports in this price range.


Can't comment on either personally, I have a set of VSonic GR02 Bass and SoundMAGIC E30 on the way as they are both rated well for budget options.


Consider the GR07 bass over the GR07 as you've mentioned you like some bottom end and the 07 std ed are supposedly not bassy (maybe bass lacking)

post #3 of 5
Etymotic hf5 r cool sounding but w excellent isolation
post #4 of 5

The most BA drivers IEMs offers more secure isolation and more revealing but little light on bass compared to dynamic drivers which move air with bass. IEMs like Westone 3, UM2, Sony XBA3, Klipsch Image X5, X10 and EQ-7 are highly recommended because these all provide very good punchy bass with great isolation. The GR07 are highly recommended too even they won't isolate as above IEMs but vented adjustable nozze is more easy to wear and they isolate well, the soundquality is amazing for the price.

post #5 of 5
Thread Starter 

Thanks for the responses but I'm feeling kind of stuck. 


Noone025, being in the same predicament as me, what makes you lean towards the Shure SE215s?


Suburbanite, from what I've read, I think the Hf5s might be a little too cool sounding for me!


HFAUDIOPHILE, those Westones seem to be the best of both worlds, but well out of my price range.  Looking at some of the other BA options, like the Klipsch, Sony, TDK, and some others, it seems like my choices are to risk the leakage from the dynamic drivers or sacrifice some SQ from these moderately priced BA driven IEMs (and especially since an amp is not an option for me.)


I'm wondering if there are any other options for: an IEM with BA drivers, punchy but balanced bass, excellent SQ (without and amp), and priced at $200 max (or am I being a bit unreasonable or too picky...!  I'm relatively new to this so if I am, just let me know...) 

Edited by PeliasRex - 2/19/13 at 8:13pm
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