Let me start by saying that I am not a professional reviewer of any products. The opinions in this review are mine and mine alone. I am not being compensated for this review in any way. I did pay full price for my set of in-ears. Ok, not that all that is done let’s get to the meat of this review.
I will start with what this review is and isn’t. This is a review of using the 1964-V6 as a reference monitor. I used my V6’s for mixing monitors for several local bands and productions. This is not a review of using the V6’s as headphones for listening to recorded music, there are other people who are much better at that than me who will be along to provide their opinions. For this review I will be commenting on my experience mixing a weekend worship service and associate rehearsal at my church.
Above my head is the right side of the line array loud speaker system, and approximately 6 feet directly in-front of me, located under the stage is dual 18" sub woofers. So I am able to get the body pressure of the bass guitar and kick drum. I will say that they have better isolation than most all universal fit in ear monitors I have used and are on par with the other brands of custom in ear monitors I have used.
Now to the equipment (remember I am using these to mix live sound)
- 3 Shure Beta87 wireless microphones (2 male and 1 female vocal)
- Shure SM57 for DW snare drum
- Shure beta53 Kick drum
- 2 Audix D2 for rack toms
- Audix D4 for floor tom
- 2 Apex Electronics 185 (matched pair) overhead drum kit
- Crown PZM right Hand (high frequency) of Piano
- Beyerdynamic M88 Left hand (low Frequency) of Piano
- Sennheiser 427 Guitar amp
- Korg O1W Keyboard Direct converted ¼” insturement toXLR with IMP II direct box
- Roland VK08M Organ Module line in same method as O1W
- Taylor acoustic Guitar with internal pick-up line in same as O1W
- Bass Guitar direct in through players SnasAmp Bass Driver DI.
- Digico D1 Digital mixing Console
- Digico 96Khz AtoD converters
- All XLR Cables were Audio Technica cables
- Shure PSM600 wireless personal monitor
- Taylor Acoustic Guitar with pickup
- DW performer series drum kit (3 toms, snare, kick, Hi-hat, 2 crash cymbals, 1 low ride cymbal)
- Korg 01W Keyboard
- Roland VK08M (Hammond B3 simulating module)
- Les paul guitar with amp
- Modulus Genesis V Bass bass Guitar
- Schimmel model: C 208 Tradition 10 foot concert grand piano
Before heading to mix with my new 1964-V6’s for the first time I listened to them several hours every evening for a couple of weeks using my 60G iPod classic loaded with apple lossless audio. I noticed that the style of music and quality of the recording and depending on what you listened to could think that they do not have enough bass. The sound was very natural when listening to classical music.
I had been mixing with Live wire duals before getting the V6’s. In comparing the sound of the two CIEM’s the live wires were much much muddier in the mids and didn’t have the low frequency extension of the V6’s. I also barrowed a set of SE535’s to have a more current frame of reference. The frequency response was very similar to the SE535 just as said in the review by Jashuachew (http://www.head-fi.org/t/556335/1964-ears-v6-discussion-appreciation-thread/480#post_9080537) I can comfortably confirm what he said in regards to the sound of the V6’s.
The band members are all using universal fit in ear monitors. The vocal lead, piano, and keyboard players are all using Shure E5's (approximently 5 years old). The Drummer, Bass player, and Electric Guitar player are using SE535's. The acoustic guitar player is using Shure SE315's. they are all using Shure PSM900 wired or wireless packs powered by Ansmann 9V 250 mah rechargeable batteries.
On Wednesday night the band rehearses the weekend worship set. We start with sound check and gain settings. The process for this is we go instrument by instrument and set gain level and EQ of each instrument. We start with the drums and proceed to bass guitar, electric guitar, acoustic guitar, piano, and finally Keyboard/Hammond B3.
While I was setting the gain on the bass I could hear the bass player rest his thumb on the string above the one he was playing. I had never been able to here this before. I could also hear when he took it off of the string to move his hand to play a different sting.
The piano and keyboard are all stereo mic'd and sounded like they were a mile wide. One sound the keyboard player used, which could best be described as a Star Wars spaceship flyby, almost made me sea sick as she would play the sound on the left then transverse the sound to the right and back to the left again.
Next we start building the individual monitor mixes for each musician. We start with drums and set the drum mix for each person then add one instrument at a time in the same order we perform a sound check. After setting the mix for all 7 of musicians I noticed they were all very bass guitar heavy. This leads me to believe, that the l1964-V6’s with the BTG audio starlight cable has a better response then the Shure SE535’s.
I was able to clearly hear and distinguish all the instruments in the mix and for the first time I thought that adding reverberation and delay to the vocals did not muddy the mix and added to the soundstage of the mix.
- The 1964-v6’s work great as in ear monitors for the performing musician.
- At their current price point $650 they are among the best sounding CIEM’s you can get.
- They have a very natural sound I can hear a lot of details that I have never heard in my live mixes before.
- The definition of the low frequency combined with the pressure from the subs created a very live and naturel feel.
- My initial fit was excellent and after wearing them for 5+ hours straight my ears did not fatigue at all and I almost forgot I was wearing them.
- The sound stage is wide enough that when effects are used correctly I can get the sound stage to feel like what I see.
Feel free to ask specific questions or leave comments about the quality of my review. All feedback is greatly appreciated.