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Zero Audio - ZH-DX200 Carbo Tenore | ZH-DX210 Carbo Basso (Carbon & Aluminium IEM) thread - Page 174

Poll Results: Which one would you order??

 
  • 73% (274)
    Carbo Tenore
  • 26% (97)
    Carbo Basso
371 Total Votes  
post #2596 of 5954

I have to agree with others that Tenore is a bassy IEM. If you use over the ear fit the bass is far less but otherwise it is very impactful

post #2597 of 5954
I agree with James about micro drivers to some extent, as I also feel like they don't have the effortlessness of a large driver, say for example like the 16mm Sony EX1000. I mention that one because it really is my benchmark for dynamic driver bass. Simply effortless with amazing dynamics. I would love to hear Tenore like tuning in a larger driver and see if there is a difference.

That being said, the Tenore IMO, is an improvement over past micro driver implementations and I think it's sub bass sounds more controlled than the IE800, which sounded boomy to me, like it was struggling to convey it's overly boosted bass frequency response.

For me you can't really have time domain issues unless you have multiple drivers, where one is firing a few milliseconds after another (the Astrotec AX60 has this problem and it sounds like it's tripping over its bass). So I'm going to assume its just extended decay James is picking up on. 3 of the 4 Tenore's I've heard have a sub bass lift and extended decay. But I also think those sound tighter and more controlled than the KC06, which sounds hazy down low to me. I do try for a looser seal or just resort to a -3db sub bass cut most of the time.

I also don't hear any treble grain in any of the sets I've heard. Just one has a peak, probably around 8k or so, and is a tiny bit splashy depending on fit depth. The other 3 are very smooth regardless of fit depth.

I can't wait to hear how the micro driver Rockets compare. Micro drivers allow for superior combination of form factor, aesthetics and comfort for me.
Edited by shotgunshane - 6/11/14 at 4:59am
post #2598 of 5954
Quote:
Originally Posted by james444 View Post
 

 

I think what I call "authority" isn't just mass-related, as the GR10's MA and particularly FAD's vented BAs fare better than the IE800's (and Tenore's) microdrivers in that regard.

 

Anyway, I'll post a listening example later on... if no one else can relate to what I mean, then it's probably expectation bias.

 

 

From a FR perspective, my borrowed unit's bass seems very solid, but surprisingly it doesn't sound as well defined as it should. I felt like there was something odd going on in the time domain, but haven't been able to put my finger on it so far.

 

I think there is a little too much decay in the low end (bass & midbass to some extend) so notes sometimes overlap. This coupled with an average dynamic range is probably what you describe. It's noticeable but it also makes it sound more polite while enhancing the sense of space. It could either be a limitation of the driver or a conscious choice with the tuning.

 

The only other microdriver i've owned is the MH1 and it also had similar bass characteristics, though the elevated bass, V shaped signature and small soundstage helped it with the impression of dynamics.

 

[EDIT]

Lol, yep, Shane was faster :P. When my 2nd pair arrives checking decay is the first thing i'll do, although my current pair doesn't have elevated bass to my ears (i wear them over the ear with a shallow insertion though, so i might not have noticed). Zero Audio was probably aware of this and that's why they included tips that are only suitable for shallow insertion (short and wide).


Edited by SkiesOfAzel - 6/11/14 at 4:51am
post #2599 of 5954
Quote:
Originally Posted by james444 View Post

My borrowed set has a bit of a lifted low end too. Bass response is similar to the IE800, the Tenores' deep bass being probably a tad less pronounced (bit still noticeably lifted).

I wouldn't call them warm either, though there seems to be something odd going on in the low range's time domain that affects the lower mids. Still, there's none of the mid/upper bass emphasis that's typical for warm phones.

Mids are very nice and detailed, but fall slightly short of the IE800's mids in refinement and realism.

Treble on my unit is most different from your description, no noteworthy grain or aggression, again very detailed and (as far as I can judge wink.gif extended. Very nice air considering the isolation. Treble note weight is considerably more realistic than on the IE800, which makes it my favorite treble from a microdriver so far.

Speaking of microdrivers, I'll probably get flamed for this, but it seems I can smell microdrivers ten miles against the wind for their bass authority. Or lack thereof, to be more precise. wink.gif It's like those little buggers wanna play with the big boys (lifted low end and all), but ultimately can't. However, this criticism isn't specific to the Tenores, as the much more expensive IE800 fare no better in that regard.

After about an hour of A/Bing against the IE800, UERM, KC06, GR10 and (modded) M200, I'd rate the Tenores roughly on par with the KC06 so far.

Yes! The lower mids were bugging me all day yesterday. I have no idea what it is. It's like a deflated balloon, like there's little substance and foundation behind them. They don't have much authority behind them. This has something to do with the low end if I had to guess, like they need to be a little more convex toward the bottom to fill out the sound. The bass is boosted, yet it really gets lost in the mix, somehow, which is the exact opposite of say the KC06.

Maybe I'm not using aggression and grain the way most would. Maybe it's more like etched. Like looking at an overly sharpened photo and the sharpening is visibly distracting. Or like watching a less than optimally encoded digital video. It doesn't really have anything to do with peaks in the response. I guess when I say smooth, I mean non-porous sounding on sustained notes.

Refinement might be the operative word when I say aggressive, like they can't tone it down, always trying to impress, like they have a complex. It's a great sound but sometimes I wish they would take it easy, without having to turn down the volume.

I think I'm the same way with microdrivers. They have a lot of impressive qualities, but there's something very different about them. I don't think it's an issue as much as it should be embraced when tuning them.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Inks View Post

I'll rate the Tenore a league above the GR10, that thing is congested.

I personally found the IE800s mids to be slightly recessed with higher pitched voiced, none of that with the Tenore.
I think the microdriver driver thing can partly be expectation bias, you knowing its a microdriver, expect it. Microdriver are small but still of much bigger mass than any BA or MA.

As for the Doppios, I know Shotgunshane had them and he easily prefers the Tenores. ZA is also honest about its treble extension, rating it lower than the Tenores. Being a typical dual BA it's also not going to have the bass extension/mass of the tenores

The ie800 has that dip after about 2.5k, which I disliked, as personal preference, also. But they were absolutely free of any harshness. Whereas the Tenore could probably use maybe a 1.5-2dB drop at around 2.5-4k, which you'll notice I never usually want lol.

The FAD BA implementation somehow avoids the bass trap of most small drivers, but they are more colored for those that care. So does the UERM, having a metric ton of clean bass body, but still doesn't have the authority of a large dynamic driver, but it arguably has a monstrous BA for the low end, so maybe mass is less of an issue there, and that it's linear in custom form through most of the low end and past 20hz doesn't hurt. Last night I ran a sine sweep and it was easily pumping away at 10hz. Not that I could probably hear it, but the driver was working at a very slow oscillation and I could at the least feel it.
post #2600 of 5954

I purchased a pair of Carbo Basso (£33.00 ish), a few thoughts:

 

I have owned Shure Se530/535, E4, E2C. Klipsch S4, Sen 300cx, Klipsch Custom 3. The quality and depth of bass with the Basso is better than all of those listed, more defined, more depth. Mids feel a little congested/muddy, perhaps some burn in will add life to this..... Treble is the weakest area, not much in the way of sparkle and pretty dull sounding., with that soundstage and clarity is weak.

 

Overall I still think these are superb for the price and would recommend them to anyone whose priorities are bass in an iem.

post #2601 of 5954
Quote:
Originally Posted by vwinter View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by james444 View Post

My borrowed set has a bit of a lifted low end too. Bass response is similar to the IE800, the Tenores' deep bass being probably a tad less pronounced (bit still noticeably lifted).

I wouldn't call them warm either, though there seems to be something odd going on in the low range's time domain that affects the lower mids. Still, there's none of the mid/upper bass emphasis that's typical for warm phones.

Mids are very nice and detailed, but fall slightly short of the IE800's mids in refinement and realism.

Treble on my unit is most different from your description, no noteworthy grain or aggression, again very detailed and (as far as I can judge wink.gif extended. Very nice air considering the isolation. Treble note weight is considerably more realistic than on the IE800, which makes it my favorite treble from a microdriver so far.

Speaking of microdrivers, I'll probably get flamed for this, but it seems I can smell microdrivers ten miles against the wind for their bass authority. Or lack thereof, to be more precise. wink.gif It's like those little buggers wanna play with the big boys (lifted low end and all), but ultimately can't. However, this criticism isn't specific to the Tenores, as the much more expensive IE800 fare no better in that regard.

After about an hour of A/Bing against the IE800, UERM, KC06, GR10 and (modded) M200, I'd rate the Tenores roughly on par with the KC06 so far.

Yes! The lower mids were bugging me all day yesterday. I have no idea what it is. It's like a deflated balloon, like there's little substance and foundation behind them. They don't have much authority behind them. This has something to do with the low end if I had to guess, like they need to be a little more convex toward the bottom to fill out the sound. The bass is boosted, yet it really gets lost in the mix, somehow, which is the exact opposite of say the KC06.

Maybe I'm not using aggression and grain the way most would. Maybe it's more like etched. Like looking at an overly sharpened photo and the sharpening is visibly distracting. Or like watching a less than optimally encoded digital video. It doesn't really have anything to do with peaks in the response. I guess when I say smooth, I mean non-porous sounding on sustained notes.

Refinement might be the operative word when I say aggressive, like they can't tone it down, always trying to impress, like they have a complex. It's a great sound but sometimes I wish they would take it easy, without having to turn down the volume.

I think I'm the same way with microdrivers. They have a lot of impressive qualities, but there's something very different about them. I don't think it's an issue as much as it should be embraced when tuning them.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Inks View Post

I'll rate the Tenore a league above the GR10, that thing is congested.

I personally found the IE800s mids to be slightly recessed with higher pitched voiced, none of that with the Tenore.
I think the microdriver driver thing can partly be expectation bias, you knowing its a microdriver, expect it. Microdriver are small but still of much bigger mass than any BA or MA.

As for the Doppios, I know Shotgunshane had them and he easily prefers the Tenores. ZA is also honest about its treble extension, rating it lower than the Tenores. Being a typical dual BA it's also not going to have the bass extension/mass of the tenores

The ie800 has that dip after about 2.5k, which I disliked, as personal preference, also. But they were absolutely free of any harshness. Whereas the Tenore could probably use maybe a 1.5-2dB drop at around 2.5-4k, which you'll notice I never usually want lol.

The FAD BA implementation somehow avoids the bass trap of most small drivers, but they are more colored for those that care. So does the UERM, having a metric ton of clean bass body, but still doesn't have the authority of a large dynamic driver, but it arguably has a monstrous BA for the low end, so maybe mass is less of an issue there, and that it's linear in custom form through most of the low end and past 20hz doesn't hurt. Last night I ran a sine sweep and it was easily pumping away at 10hz. Not that I could probably hear it, but the driver was working at a very slow oscillation and I could at the least feel it.
Are you sure the treble isn't just more revealing and resolving being so flat? So you're hearing more flaws or details in a recording, but since there's no peak it sounds unusual to you?
post #2602 of 5954
Quote:
Originally Posted by vwinter View Post


Yes! The lower mids were bugging me all day yesterday. I have no idea what it is. It's like a deflated balloon, like there's little substance and foundation behind them. They don't have much authority behind them. This has something to do with the low end if I had to guess, like they need to be a little more convex toward the bottom to fill out the sound. The bass is boosted, yet it really gets lost in the mix, somehow, which is the exact opposite of say the KC06.

Maybe I'm not using aggression and grain the way most would. Maybe it's more like etched. Like looking at an overly sharpened photo and the sharpening is visibly distracting. Or like watching a less than optimally encoded digital video. It doesn't really have anything to do with peaks in the response. I guess when I say smooth, I mean non-porous sounding on sustained notes.

Refinement might be the operative word when I say aggressive, like they can't tone it down, always trying to impress, like they have a complex. It's a great sound but sometimes I wish they would take it easy, without having to turn down the volume.

I think I'm the same way with microdrivers. They have a lot of impressive qualities, but there's something very different about them. I don't think it's an issue as much as it should be embraced when tuning them.
The ie800 has that dip after about 2.5k, which I disliked, as personal preference, also. But they were absolutely free of any harshness. Whereas the Tenore could probably use maybe a 1.5-2dB drop at around 2.5-4k, which you'll notice I never usually want lol.

The FAD BA implementation somehow avoids the bass trap of most small drivers, but they are more colored for those that care. So does the UERM, having a metric ton of clean bass body, but still doesn't have the authority of a large dynamic driver, but it arguably has a monstrous BA for the low end, so maybe mass is less of an issue there, and that it's linear in custom form through most of the low end and past 20hz doesn't hurt. Last night I ran a sine sweep and it was easily pumping away at 10hz. Not that I could probably hear it, but the driver was working at a very slow oscillation and I could at the least feel it.

 

It feels porous because of sound overlap caused by decay. Lack of dynamics is what makes the bass sound hollow, if it was more convex it would either be warm sounding or have an even weaker bass impact. I guess it's harder to tune varying decay and attack when you have a limited surface to work with. A proper dynamic driver for a woofer coupled with a microdriver for mids and highs would probably offer a very well rounded sound package but then size would become an issue. There always has to be some kind of compromise with iems. 

post #2603 of 5954

Playing pure bass tones and turning them off does not produce any appreciable decay problems on my pair. These problems (if present) would be more noticeable on these pure tones (which cut off abruptly) than in music which has instruments that normally decay over time.

 

It is important to remember that distortion in the time domain is generally not perceived as a 'timing error' that you might imagine, unless they are of very large magnitudes.

In fact the brain does not correctly distinguish between duration and intensity for sounds less than 200ms.

 

I also doubt that these IEMs are missing dynamic range - that would mean they exhibit some unprecedented, complex nonlinear distortion.

post #2604 of 5954
Quote:
Originally Posted by higbvuyb View Post
 

Playing pure bass tones and turning them off does not produce any appreciable decay problems on my pair. These problems (if present) would be more noticeable on these pure tones (which cut off abruptly) than in music which has instruments that normally decay over time.

 

It is important to remember that distortion in the time domain is generally not perceived as a 'timing error' that you might imagine, unless they are of very large magnitudes.

In fact the brain does not correctly distinguish between duration and intensity for sounds less than 200ms.

 

I also doubt that these IEMs are missing dynamic range - that would mean they exhibit some unprecedented, complex nonlinear distortion.

 

I just tested with single tones and you are right. Could what causing this be a lack of speed down there? Maybe it doesn't fare as well with multiple tones in close proximity.

 

As for dynamic range, my understanding is that the term describes the difference between the loudest and the most silent tone that can be produced. I've had iems with big dynamic drivers that offered a more noticeable difference between those two states than the Tenores. I am not saying those actually compress dynamic range, just that in comparison to bigger phones they may sound less authoritative.

post #2605 of 5954
Quote:
Originally Posted by shak85 View Post
 

I have to agree with others that Tenore is a bassy IEM. If you use over the ear fit the bass is far less but otherwise it is very impactful

Try double flanged tips if you want less bass, but still punchy.  Meelectronics m6, sennheiser, hifiman.

post #2606 of 5954
Quote:
Originally Posted by Grayson73 View Post
 

Try double flanged tips if you want less bass, but still punchy.  Meelectronics m6, sennheiser, hifiman.

 

I'm personally craving for more bass :basshead: so switching to Comply helped with that, better isolation - better low end.  On top of that, a few ticks up around 70Hz (AP100 EQ), and you get a meatier punch.  Listening to Tenores exclusively now.  Giant Killers to Nth degree :D  Btw, pairs up really good with AP100 up-sampled to 24b/192k.  The width/depth of soundstage is amazing, almost like a sound from open headphones but not as airy.

post #2607 of 5954


Try some sony hybrid tips. Bass should increase.

post #2608 of 5954

Or even better some large MH1 flanges, you get nothing but bass with these :D.

post #2609 of 5954
Quote:
Originally Posted by higbvuyb View Post

Playing pure bass tones and turning them off does not produce any appreciable decay problems on my pair. These problems (if present) would be more noticeable on these pure tones (which cut off abruptly) than in music which has instruments that normally decay over time.

It is important to remember that distortion in the time domain is generally not perceived as a 'timing error' that you might imagine, unless they are of very large magnitudes.
In fact the brain does not correctly distinguish between duration and intensity for sounds less than 200ms.

I also doubt that these IEMs are missing dynamic range - that would mean they exhibit some unprecedented, complex nonlinear distortion.

Finally someone that knows their stuff...
post #2610 of 5954
Quote:
Originally Posted by Inks View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by higbvuyb View Post

Playing pure bass tones and turning them off does not produce any appreciable decay problems on my pair. These problems (if present) would be more noticeable on these pure tones (which cut off abruptly) than in music which has instruments that normally decay over time.

It is important to remember that distortion in the time domain is generally not perceived as a 'timing error' that you might imagine, unless they are of very large magnitudes.
In fact the brain does not correctly distinguish between duration and intensity for sounds less than 200ms.

I also doubt that these IEMs are missing dynamic range - that would mean they exhibit some unprecedented, complex nonlinear distortion.

Finally someone that knows their stuff...
Agreed. I really believe the flat response is percieved differently between users causing a lot of these impressions.
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