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Custom In Ear Monitor CIEM Care and Maintanence?

post #1 of 11
Thread Starter 

Hey there guys,

 

New CIEM owner here and I was wondering how and if there is a proper way to maintain and care for my CIEMs in order to prolong its lifespan? (They did cost quite a pretty penny after all)

 

For instance, I find myself cleaning the canals with the little tool quite frequently - is this a good practice or am I being a little OCD?

 

Thanks in advance!

 

-iTS

post #2 of 11
Quote:
Originally Posted by itshot View Post

Hey there guys,

New CIEM owner here and I was wondering how and if there is a proper way to maintain and care for my CIEMs in order to prolong its lifespan? (They did cost quite a pretty penny after all)

For instance, I find myself cleaning the canals with the little tool quite frequently - is this a good practice or am I being a little OCD?

Thanks in advance!

-iTS

Cleaning is very good.

Avoid moisture, the acoustic filters can be damaged by it. Don't put them in right after a shower, etc.

The sockets where the cable inserts is delicate for all ciems, (even more so recessed socket designs), so be careful about stress from the cable, pulling on the cable, replacing cables constantly, etc.

Don't drop, crush, throw them into a linty pocket, etc.
post #3 of 11

What CIEM do you own?

 

Care for them like you would with any piece of expensive audio equipment!

 

Let's look at possible modes of failure:

- Physical damage

- Moisture related damage clogs up the filters or wicks water into the sound tubes/drivers, which is very difficult to remove

- Wax clogs the sound tube

- Driver failure (and other manufacturer related issues)

- Cable failure (cable failure is one of the top causes of IEM failure

 

- For physical damage, don't put them in your pocket, use the case (or a case) when not in use.  While acrylic shells are tough (if yours is acrylic), the drivers inside do have g-shock limits depending on how they are built, so try not to drop them.  Dropping them every once in a while on your desk, for example, should be fine, but from your head to a hard floor is another thing.

- Moisture is the enemy of small sound tubes and tiny filters.  Either store them with a desiccant pack when not in use or use a hearing aid dryer from time to time.  

- This is what the cleaning tool and hearing aid dryers are for.  Make sure wax isn't entering the sound tubes, and if it is, gently fish it out with the cleaning tool while holding the sound tubes downward so wax will fall out vs getting logged deeper in the sound tube.  Also, I would avoid cleaning the canal often as a build-up on the canal will help with ease of insertion and achieving a proper seal.

- Can't do much about driver failure, but it is fairly uncommon and can happen to anything, not just CIEMs.

- If you have a detachable cable, no issues.  If not, treat your cable like gold and remove it carefully from your source.  Try not to put strain on the plugs and don't get it caught on things (common sense!).

post #4 of 11
Quote:
Originally Posted by average_joe View Post
 

 

Do you recommend them for normal IEM use? I figure I could really use them for my IE8s for example, them being old as. And I'm now in a humid country, so a dryer/vac would be a good idea (I think?). That said, recommendations on which to go for, or both? Or get the dehumidifier thingie at a fraction of the total cost! 

 

Would a normal dry cabinet for cameras work too?


Edited by cravenz - 4/10/13 at 9:30am
post #5 of 11
Thread Starter 

Thanks for the input average_joe, Kunlun.

 

I take it that moisture exposure is something to watch out for in the long run. What would you have to say about some thing like a dehumidifier pillow?

 

Also, I've heard that storing CIEMs in small containers (like the Ultimate Ears roadie/crush proof case) can put unwanted strain on the pins which could result in some damage. Any thoughts?


Edited by itshot - 4/10/13 at 4:49pm
post #6 of 11
Quote:
Originally Posted by itshot View Post

Thanks for the input average_joe, Kunlun.

I take it that moisture exposure is something to watch out for in the long run. What would you have to say about some thing like a dehumidifier pillow?

Also, I've heard that storing CIEMs in small containers (like the Ullimate Ears roadie/crush proof case) can put unwanted strain on the pins which could result in some damage. Any thoughts?

On the latter point, it might be how I messed up my IE8 wires as well.
post #7 of 11
Quote:
Originally Posted by cravenz View Post

Do you recommend them for normal IEM use? I figure I could really use them for my IE8s for example, them being old as. And I'm now in a humid country, so a dryer/vac would be a good idea (I think?). That said, recommendations on which to go for, or both? Or get the dehumidifier thingie at a fraction of the total cost! 

 

Would a normal dry cabinet for cameras work too?

 

Back when the IE8 was my go-to IEM, I think I might have damaged them from long term ear wax build up as I wore them so much.  The sound changed, and when I received a warranty replacement it was much clearer (I am not saying it was clear in the grand scheme of things, but compared with the previous IE8), just the way I remembered the IE8 when I originally received it (after burn in).  

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by itshot View Post

Thanks for the input average_joe, Kunlun.

 

I take it that moisture exposure is something to watch out for in the long run. What would you have to say about some thing like a dehumidifier pillow?

 

Also, I've heard that storing CIEMs in small containers (like the Ultimate Ears roadie/crush proof case) can put unwanted strain on the pins which could result in some damage. Any thoughts?

 

The dehumidifier pillow should work if it will fit in your case.  I have damages pins, actually broke them off in the shell of a Hidition CIEM since the included case was too small for my large shells, so yes, if you are not careful, a case that is too small can be very bad.

post #8 of 11
Quote:
Originally Posted by average_joe View Post

 

Back when the IE8 was my go-to IEM, I think I might have damaged them from long term ear wax build up as I wore them so much.  The sound changed, and when I received a warranty replacement it was much clearer (I am not saying it was clear in the grand scheme of things, but compared with the previous IE8), just the way I remembered the IE8 when I originally received it (after burn in).  

 

Could do with answering my questions! ph34r.gif

 

Haha!

post #9 of 11

Cleaning the sound tubes with the wire loop should be done between every use.

 

You should also clean the outer shells regularly, preferably with non-alcohol wipes.

 

A desiccant is a good idea, especially if you tend to sweat a lot. The "pillow" Joe mentioned should work fine, as long as you remember to keep it sealed and recharge it regularly. The hearing aid dryer might be overkill, but people who sweat a lot (like musicians on stage) or whose body chemistry produces a lot of oil can definitely benefit by using them. Another electronic drying system to consider is the Dry & Store Zephyr.

post #10 of 11
Thread Starter 

On no! I feel asleep with my CIEMs for 4 hours!

 

Haha...  I was like O_O when I woke up.

 

So I opened a pack of seaweed, ate all the seaweed, took out the desiccant in the seaweed pack, cleaned it up, and put it in the pelican container along with my CIEMs lol

post #11 of 11

So...to pop the question. Would a dry cabinet set at 45% humidity work for IEMs? Or is that too low/high?

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