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What are the best IEM under $150 for me?

post #1 of 25
Thread Starter 

Hey everyone, want to help me find new IEM's? I listen to a wide variety of music, but not much hip-hop/rap/techno.  Anything that can be found under $150.  Thanks! 

post #2 of 25

$150 has sort of become a "between brackets" price point. Stuff at $150 isn't typically as good as even slightly more expensive stuff, and lately there are sets even around $50 which are very close in performance. 

I think the Rock-it-Sounds R50 is around $150 (or less), and it's a great little IEM at that price. I couldn't, in good conscience, recommend anything else as highly at that price point. 


Edited by Alondite - 4/14/13 at 5:06pm
post #3 of 25

for me, the only higher tier iems i have or have had are the etymotic research hf5, ultimate ears trifi10, and the klipsch x10. the hf5, i owned and used for a long time before giving it to my friend who said its broken after 2 weeks, i kinda know the sound of the hf5 pretty well. the other 2 i still have in my possession. i think they all perform at around the same level with their own plus and minuses. i dont know what kind of sound you are looking for but this is a thread that helped me when i decided to purchase my first higher tier iem, my hf5. 

 

 

http://www.head-fi.org/t/478568/multi-iem-review-278-iems-compared-astrotec-am-800-dx-60-added-03-31-13-p-659

post #4 of 25

Vsonic GR07 MK II

 

Hands down best IEM in the price bracket. Especially if you value clarity, detail, and soundstage. They are fairly neutral IEMs, but with great bass impact, and sparkle up top. Very comfortable as well, with plenty of added tips for rolling. 

post #5 of 25
Quote:
Originally Posted by Greed View Post

Vsonic GR07 MK II

 

Hands down best IEM in the price bracket. Especially if you value clarity, detail, and soundstage. They are fairly neutral IEMs, but with great bass impact, and sparkle up top. Very comfortable as well, with plenty of added tips for rolling. 

 

 

is it harsh sounding? i think this is a very important issue actually and a lot of people dont like harsh sounding stuff

post #6 of 25
Quote:
Originally Posted by reddragon View Post

 

 

is it harsh sounding? i think this is a very important issue actually and a lot of people dont like harsh sounding stuff

I would say it depends on your recording. They aren't warm, lush or liquid sounding, and more on the analytical side of things but still very smooth across the frequency. The treble could be a bit bothersome if you pair it with a bright amp, or have poorly recorded music. It does really well with acoustic, classical, and ambient music. Again the treble could be a bit harsh if one mainly listens to rap, hip-hop, or electronica. 

 

Overall, a great value for a very detailed, clear, and clean sounding IEM. If one would want more bass, particularly impact, then Vsonic makes a GR07 Bass Edition model for those that want more oomph down low. 


Edited by Greed - 4/14/13 at 6:21pm
post #7 of 25
Quote:
Originally Posted by Greed View Post

I would say it depends on your recording. They aren't warm, lush or liquid sounding, and more on the analytical side of things but still very smooth across the frequency. The treble could be a bit bothersome if you pair it with a bright amp, or have poorly recorded music. It does really well with acoustic, classical, and ambient music. Again the treble could be a bit harsh if one mainly listens to rap, hip-hop, or electronica. 

 

Overall, a great value for a very detailed, clear, and clean sounding IEM. If one would want more bass, particularly impact, then Vsonic makes a GR07 Bass Edition model for those that want more oomph down low. 

 

 

 

well, have you heard the hf5? does the gr07 sound kinda like it? it will be easier for me to "feel" what it sounds like without hearing it if you compare it to something i own. the hf5 is too harsh for me and i think usually people (casual listeners) prefer a warmer sound. even the klipsch x10 is too harsh for me despite it has the bass to cover up some of the harshness, imo. out of the 3 iems that i own or have owned, the tf10 is the only one i have that i can stand for long term listening, sound wise. of course the tf10 has it notorious fit issues and im unlucky enough to have it as well. 

post #8 of 25
Quote:
Originally Posted by reddragon View Post

 

 

 

well, have you heard the hf5? does the gr07 sound kinda like it? it will be easier for me to "feel" what it sounds like without hearing it if you compare it to something i own. the hf5 is too harsh for me and i think usually people (casual listeners) prefer a warmer sound. even the klipsch x10 is too harsh for me despite it has the bass to cover up some of the harshness, imo. out of the 3 iems that i own or have owned, the tf10 is the only one i have that i can stand for long term listening, sound wise. of course the tf10 has it notorious fit issues and im unlucky enough to have it as well. 

I haven't heard the HF5, but have heard a few of Etymotic's offerings, and I do agree they are harsh and IMO has little to no bass. They sound hollow, with no life to the sound. Personally, they are horrible IEMs IMO, and the only thing that are great about them are the deep fit. From the models I heard, the treble is not as harsh, actually, IMO the GR07 treble is overly bright. They can be bright at times with certain songs, but you can always EQ them down a bit. They are much better than the Etymotics I've heard, and would recommend them to anyone in this price range. Only people I wouldn't recommend them to are serious bassheads, because the impact and quantity is just not there for bassheads. 

post #9 of 25

i think shure se215 is an good option

post #10 of 25

I have not heard the gr07 mkii, but besides that, you should also consider tdk ba200. It's fairly neutral.

post #11 of 25
Quote:
Originally Posted by Greed View Post

I haven't heard the HF5, but have heard a few of Etymotic's offerings, and I do agree they are harsh and IMO has little to no bass. They sound hollow, with no life to the sound. Personally, they are horrible IEMs IMO, and the only thing that are great about them are the deep fit. From the models I heard, the treble is not as harsh, actually, IMO the GR07 treble is overly bright. They can be bright at times with certain songs, but you can always EQ them down a bit. They are much better than the Etymotics I've heard, and would recommend them to anyone in this price range. Only people I wouldn't recommend them to are serious bassheads, because the impact and quantity is just not there for bassheads. 

 

 

the hf5's bass when i first heard it, i was very disappointed. i was like this has no bass, i was coming off from a cheap 5 bucks iem Coby Jammerz CVE52 (my first iem ever) that has a boomy bass and a warm sound. then i learned that the hf5, you have to have a deep insert to have bass. the hf5's bass is tight and is punchy though may not have the full bodiness or power like the tf10 for example. on the quantity side, its still a bit low and it lacks subbass. thats what i remember. however i got more and more used to it and the bass wasnt really that lacking anymore. the whole sound sig is on the lean side and thin sounding, hence harshness. then i stopped using it and went to full sized headphones. i listened to it once before i gave it to my friend, the last time i listened to it, i was still impressed with its clarity. i also must mention the hf5 has the best noise isolation out of all iems i have, not only among the the tf10 and x10 but all iems i have because of the deep fit. for bassheads, i definitely wouldnt recommend the hf5, the x10 i wouldnt recommend if you cant stand harshness, i would recommend the tf10 if you can get past the fit issues. the gr07, i have yet to try it, i have already seen people mentioning that a few times before and if i remember right, people have even recommended that to me. my preference in sound sig has probably changed over time, im not sure if i want that bright sounding gear anymore.

post #12 of 25

GR07 sounds warm and full and bass heavy compared to my Ety ER4PTs. 

Quote:
Originally Posted by reddragon View Post

 

 

the hf5's bass when i first heard it, i was very disappointed. i was like this has no bass, i was coming off from a cheap 5 bucks iem Coby Jammerz CVE52 (my first iem ever) that has a boomy bass and a warm sound. then i learned that the hf5, you have to have a deep insert to have bass. the hf5's bass is tight and is punchy though may not have the full bodiness or power like the tf10 for example. on the quantity side, its still a bit low and it lacks subbass. thats what i remember. however i got more and more used to it and the bass wasnt really that lacking anymore. the whole sound sig is on the lean side and thin sounding, hence harshness. then i stopped using it and went to full sized headphones. i listened to it once before i gave it to my friend, the last time i listened to it, i was still impressed with its clarity. i also must mention the hf5 has the best noise isolation out of all iems i have, not only among the the tf10 and x10 but all iems i have because of the deep fit. for bassheads, i definitely wouldnt recommend the hf5, the x10 i wouldnt recommend if you cant stand harshness, i would recommend the tf10 if you can get past the fit issues. the gr07, i have yet to try it, i have already seen people mentioning that a few times before and if i remember right, people have even recommended that to me. my preference in sound sig has probably changed over time, im not sure if i want that bright sounding gear anymore.

post #13 of 25
Quote:
Originally Posted by Greed View Post

I haven't heard the HF5, but have heard a few of Etymotic's offerings, and I do agree they are harsh and IMO has little to no bass. They sound hollow, with no life to the sound. Personally, they are horrible IEMs IMO, and the only thing that are great about them are the deep fit. From the models I heard, the treble is not as harsh, actually, IMO the GR07 treble is overly bright. They can be bright at times with certain songs, but you can always EQ them down a bit. They are much better than the Etymotics I've heard, and would recommend them to anyone in this price range. Only people I wouldn't recommend them to are serious bassheads, because the impact and quantity is just not there for bassheads. 


I'd have to give a +1 to the GR07 Mk. II as well (though I don't find the Bass Edition to be as good), but it's $180. It's still a great deal at that price, but it's a bit over your target of $150.

As for the quoted bit, though, it's incredibly misleading and narrow-minded. 

Etymotics absolutely do not have "little to no bass." Their response is virtually ruler-flat from like 800 Hz down with some slight roll-off in the sub-bass. As for sounding "hollow, with no life to the sound," well that's just subjective nonsense. I find Etymotics to be a great listening experience due to their speed, clarity, and detail; it's so much easier to engage with the music when you can actually hear it all. But again, that's of no use to the OP because that's my own personal experience. 

The fact is, Etymotic headphones are quite balanced, only lacking the little bit of extra bass necessary to account for the lack of bone conduction in headphones. They're very quick, clean, and absurdly detailed. Higher-end Etymotics are well-engineered headphones with excellent technical proficiency. Whether or not you like their flavor of sound is up to you.

By comparison, the GR07s are very different. For one, the GR07 is in not "overly bright" in  way, shape, or form. In fact, they're even lacking a small bit of treble energy necessary for pristine leading transients and natural harmoics (which contributes to life-like timbre).

They are, however, very well-balanced headphones that perform well across the spectrum and have no real weakness. Bass quantity is about "right" for headphones, though linearity is a notch below ideal. The bass character is very quick, controlled, well-textured, and fairly deep. Midrange fits well within the bass and treble, and is quite neutral with a touch of warmth. Upper-mids are recessed a little, so the midrange doesn't have that "edge" that makes it pop like the Etys. Nonetheless, it is a very smooth, well-behaved midrange. Treble is the troublesome spot with these, but not because they are bright. There's some elevation in the 6-10 kHz range which cases them to be a bit sibilant, though to what degree is very much dependent on the track. The treble character is also a bit metallic.

In the grand scheme of things, though, the treble is hardly cause for concern. They are excellent little IEMs, especially at that price. 

post #14 of 25
post #15 of 25
Quote:
Originally Posted by Alondite View Post


I'd have to give a +1 to the GR07 Mk. II as well (though I don't find the Bass Edition to be as good), but it's $180. It's still a great deal at that price, but it's a bit over your target of $150.

As for the quoted bit, though, it's incredibly misleading and narrow-minded. 

Etymotics absolutely do not have "little to no bass." Their response is virtually ruler-flat from like 800 Hz down with some slight roll-off in the sub-bass. As for sounding "hollow, with no life to the sound," well that's just subjective nonsense. I find Etymotics to be a great listening experience due to their speed, clarity, and detail; it's so much easier to engage with the music when you can actually hear it all. But again, that's of no use to the OP because that's my own personal experience. 

The fact is, Etymotic headphones are quite balanced, only lacking the little bit of extra bass necessary to account for the lack of bone conduction in headphones. They're very quick, clean, and absurdly detailed. Higher-end Etymotics are well-engineered headphones with excellent technical proficiency. Whether or not you like their flavor of sound is up to you.

By comparison, the GR07s are very different. For one, the GR07 is in not "overly bright" in  way, shape, or form. In fact, they're even lacking a small bit of treble energy necessary for pristine leading transients and natural harmoics (which contributes to life-like timbre).

They are, however, very well-balanced headphones that perform well across the spectrum and have no real weakness. Bass quantity is about "right" for headphones, though linearity is a notch below ideal. The bass character is very quick, controlled, well-textured, and fairly deep. Midrange fits well within the bass and treble, and is quite neutral with a touch of warmth. Upper-mids are recessed a little, so the midrange doesn't have that "edge" that makes it pop like the Etys. Nonetheless, it is a very smooth, well-behaved midrange. Treble is the troublesome spot with these, but not because they are bright. There's some elevation in the 6-10 kHz range which cases them to be a bit sibilant, though to what degree is very much dependent on the track. The treble character is also a bit metallic.

In the grand scheme of things, though, the treble is hardly cause for concern. They are excellent little IEMs, especially at that price. 

So what you are saying is your opinion is somehow not "narrow-minded" or "misleading"? You are basically saying, what I hear is not right, and what you hear is? Hmm... guess you must be new here because it seems like you have no idea how things work around here. Sound is subjective, what you hear is definitely not what I hear, and could be or may not be what other do. Just because something measures a certain way doesn't mean they will sound that way. There are many factors involved and one will not know for sure unless they audition said product. Your arrogant tone, speaks of your character and of coarse... you think you know better than everyone else. My impressions where simply, my impressions doesn't make them true or untrue. If you weren't so snobbish and would stop and read the entire thread, you would know that my answer was not directed at the OP, but at a question asked by another member. Asking specifically for what I think about the HF5 in comparison with the GR07.

 

My my... the future of this hobby is filled with promise if people like you are the ones helping people with recommendations. 

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