Head-Fi.org › Forums › Equipment Forums › Portable Headphones, Earphones and In-Ear Monitors › The $999 vs $99 Challenge Tour!
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

The $999 vs $99 Challenge Tour! - Page 9

post #121 of 524

Oh no, eke's back! Good Lord...

post #122 of 524

I've received the modified TF10 & UERM demo from Inks.  Will offer some initial impressions later tonight.. as well as a brief comparison w/ the JH13Pro.

post #123 of 524

If it isn't too late, I would also like to take a crack at comparing the two.

post #124 of 524
Quote:
Originally Posted by FlySweep View Post

I've received the modified TF10 & UERM demo from Inks.  Will offer some initial impressions later tonight.. as well as a brief comparison w/ the JH13Pro.

 

When did you get the JH13? That's one of the customs I want to get but haven't gotten around to it. JH13 and UERM comparisons would be great for me to give me a better idea.

post #125 of 524
Quote:
Originally Posted by rawrster View Post

JH13 and UERM comparisons would be great for me to give me a better idea.

 

I'd also be interested in that comparion, particularly since it's the new JH13 FP version. I demoed the old JH13 vs. the UERM back then and liked the latter a lot better.

post #126 of 524

..finally got a chance to pop these in tonight.. very initial, off the cuff thoughts here.. DAC/amp is the UHA-6S MKII.

 

-- UERM : Not surprisingly, I like it.. a lot.  Signature is neutral, smooth, airy and utterly effortless.  The terrific dynamics, combined with eye popping clarity and speed make the 'e-stat' comparisons very apt.  Resolving ability is TOTL.. what impressed me was how natural and organic the way micro-detail was presented.  The person holding the scalpel was equal parts "surgeon" & "artist."

 

Soundstage is very open... terrific depth, width, height.  It certainly rivals open headphones, IMO.  The presentation feels very evenly spread across the stage.. the words "live" & "realistic" come to mind.  I don't experience the "three blob" phenomena or a "funneled midrange" (where the stage is wide, but the mids occupy a narrow area "in the head").  I'm a soundstage junkie and this phone, like the JH13, gives me my fix.. and feeds my addiction.

 

The tuning is on the (delicately) bright side of neutral.. it isn't fatiguing, sharp, or clinical.. not in the slightest.  The sound reminds me of a well DAC'ed/amped HD800.. or what the RE272 should sound like.  UERM has excellent freq. bandwidth/extension.  Bass is linear and the shelf doesn't seem boosted (will run sweeps).  The midrange is smooth, deliciously transparent, and extremely spacious.  Simply gorgeous.  Treble is clear, extended, smooth, and very detailed.. reminds me of the HD800's treble when run through a slightly warm tube.  Truth be told, I was expecting the UERM's treble to be much brighter and jarring.. mainly due to a lot of impressions I read before hand (that clearly blew it out of proportion)..I'm very pleasantly surprised.

 

One thing that immediately jumped out at me was the cohesiveness of the sound.. I immediately identified with this quality since the JH13 possesses it, as well.  In this regard as both these phones don't "sound" like multi-BA phones, in the stereotypical sense.  I will have some comparisons to the JH13Pro FP later this weekend.  Quickly though.. they seem very much on par with each other.  The JH13 sounds.. comparatively-speaking.. more lush, warmer, weighty, and intimate.

 

I don't need another custom.. but I'm extremely tempted to get the UERM.  I simply love it... it's as close to the "e-stat sound" as I've heard in an IEM.

 

-- TFRM:  This is the first time I've seen/held/inserted/heard the TF.10.  The fit?  Yeah.. WTF.  The (legendary) hate for this aspect is completely justified.  Unless you've got ear canals the size of those Indonesian caves (that the entire Empire State Building can fit in), there's no conceivable way to get a fit that's deep enough to reach the reference plane.. or even come near it.  I've never heard a stock TF.10, so consider these ears 'virgin' to the TF.10 sound (even though the fit is nothing short of 'ear rape').

 

I've got to credit Rin for the very admirable job he did with the tuning.  It certainly captures the 'essence' of the UERM sound.  The signatures are remarkably similar.. a feat in itself.  I don't think the TFRM is quite there in terms of speed, dynamics, soundstage, instrument separation, and resolving ability.. but I've got to do more listening & attain the proper fit before properly evaluating.  I will say this, if I could get the TF.10 reshelled, with Rin's TFRM signature.. I'd do it in a heartbeat.  Technicalities and all that aside, I totally love the sound.

 

More impression to come this weekend..


Edited by FlySweep - 8/17/13 at 1:04pm
post #127 of 524

@FlySweep: great first impressions, thanks!

post #128 of 524
Thread Starter 

A bit late but,

 

Thanks for the wonderful impressions, Flysweep.

 

Also a tour update...the iems are on their way to shotgunshane. Thanks to Flysweep for keeping to the 1 week audition time.

post #129 of 524
The universal UERM and modded TF10 arrived several days ago. I’m going to call them the UERM and the TF10, instead of their new and confusing acronyms, in order to keep it simple for me.

The UERM and TF10 have very similar sub bass levels to my ears, which rolls off pretty quickly under 60hz, but the UERM definitely has more mid bass presence, which IMO makes for a more realistic bottom end. As a result, pianos, acoustic guitar and drums sound more lifelike and more believable with the UERM.

The greater mid bass presence is probably helped in part due to the custom come universal housings sealing of the entire ear better. While the TF10 is much easier to fit (and in fact I’ve never had a problem fitting the TF10 the two previous times I’ve owned them), just push them straight into your canals, I have to twist and cajole the mammoth UERM universal housings. The UERM does offer much more isolation, though within a few short minutes the universal UERM housings begin to become painful. Long listening sessions are not going to happen for me with these.

Vocals on the UERM sound much more accurate and have a better sense of intimacy. Conversely, they can sound oddly hollow in the TF10 on many songs. This is the area of biggest difference between the two and it’s not really close in my opinion. When I listen to acoustic/vocal oriented music, the hollowness I hear in the TF10 is very distracting. While the UERM doesn’t present some of these performances as intimate I’d like to think they should be, it’s much more enjoyable and much more realistic sounding than the TF10.

Treble has a very similar metallic timbre on both that I really dislike, since tonality is a pretty important feature to me. The main differences are in the 8k to 11k range, where their peaks are very slightly different, making the UERM sound a touch brighter, with its peak pushed higher up the FR. To me, the placement of the peak in the TF10 is less offensive and seems to dig just as deep into the recording. Unfortunately for music enjoyment, both really accentuate sibilance but the extra presence in this treble region is great for bringing low level detail to the forefront.

Overall the UERM sounds a good deal more spacious. It's slightly brighter treble ads some airiness and the mid bass gives it some depth advantages. I hear the UERM as both taller and deeper than the modified TF10.

The modded TF10 is a pretty good/close approximation; but to me, is clearly inferior to the UERM, especially in the midrange and with vocals. At the end of the day, neither is a signature I'd choose to own for music enjoyment but can appreciate the technical performance offered. Perhaps if the UERM had a more natural brassiness to the treble, with the treble peak tamed a bit and a little more sub bass rumble, it would be more appealing to me.
post #130 of 524
Thread Starter 

Thanks, SGS. Adding to the OP.

 

I'm next on the tour, looking forward to taking a stab at the two.

post #131 of 524

Needless to say, very interesting impressions, SGS. Looking forward to my own audition of these phones eventually.

 

I believe you had a chance to try some JH5s & JH13s a few months ago (not completely sure you got to try the latter, though). If you did try the 13s (FP), what did you think of (the universal version of) it? From memory, could you briefly comment on how you think they stack up against the UERMs? Did you ever try the older (non-FP) JH13s, btw? Can't help thinking the FP thing is a bit of a marketing gimmick, ie if there really is a change in SQ for the better between the old and new JH13, my guess is that it's more to do with a new tuning—or fine-tuning if you like—rather than a breakthrough.

post #132 of 524
Quote:
Originally Posted by music_4321 View Post

Needless to say, very interesting impressions, SGS.

 

X2.

 

I can easily hear the UERM at 20Hz, so I personally wouldn't say there's much of a roll-off in sub bass. But it's typical BA bass with little texture and rumble, meaning it leaves something to be desired.

 

 

One more thing, if you and FlySweep don't mind, I'd kindly ask you both for your ratings as described in post #1 (though of course it's not mandatory):

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by eke2k6 View Post

2) We want to somewhat standardize the feedback system. Since we are comparing two IEMs, we thought it would be good to set it up on a scale of 1 through 10. The first scale will be for overall similarity, as in how close you think the two sound to each other in terms of signature, soundstage, technicalities, etc. The second scale will measure how you value each iem. For instance, do you think the UERM should be 3x or 10x more than the TFRM.

post #133 of 524
Quote:
Originally Posted by james444 View Post

 

X2.

 

I can easily hear the UERM at 20Hz, so I personally wouldn't say there's much of a roll-off in sub bass. But it's typical BA bass with little texture and rumble, meaning it leaves something to be desired.

 

 

One more thing, if you and FlySweep don't mind, I'd kindly ask you both for your ratings as described in post #1 (though of course it's not mandatory):

 

 

On my tone generator 30hz is pretty quiet compared to 60hz and I have to concentrate to hear anything at 20 at the same volume level.

Edit: which is not a deal killer in the least. 50hz is loud enough and 40hz is serviceable.  Most of my music doesn't go below 40hz anyway.

 

As to the ratings, I'd say maybe a 6.5 for how close they sound to each other.

 

It's really too subjective for me to say how much more the UERM is worth over the modded TF10 but I can say I greatly prefer the UERM. It sounds much better and I certainly prefer the form factor of the UERM over the TF10, if for nothing but pure aesthetics and for being less noticeable. The responsible part of me says no TOTL is worth its price, yet I've bought several TOTL iems and have enjoyed them immensely over much cheaper models. Then again I love my $35 Soundmagic e10 and it gets plenty of ear time too.  So all that beating around the bush, I say if the UERM sound pleases you, its worth it.


Edited by shotgunshane - 8/29/13 at 6:01pm
post #134 of 524
Quote:
Originally Posted by music_4321 View Post

Needless to say, very interesting impressions, SGS. Looking forward to my own audition of these phones eventually.

 

I believe you had a chance to try some JH5s & JH13s a few months ago (not completely sure you got to try the latter, though). If you did try the 13s (FP), what did you think of (the universal version of) it? From memory, could you briefly comment on how you think they stack up against the UERMs? Did you ever try the older (non-FP) JH13s, btw? Can't help thinking the FP thing is a bit of a marketing gimmick, ie if there really is a change in SQ for the better between the old and new JH13, my guess is that it's more to do with a new tuning—or fine-tuning if you like—rather than a breakthrough.

 

I did get to listen to demo versions of the JH5 and JH13 FP a few months ago.  I've never heard the older non-FP JH13 though.  All I know is that the demo of the JH13 FP I heard was the clearest, cleanest sounding IEM I've ever heard.  

 

Going from memory, I'd say the JH13 has a good bit more sub bass than the UERM and I remember the treble not being as hot as the UERM. I'd say the UERM, as a result, is airier too. That's about all I can say as I only heard it for maybe 20 minutes. The JH5 was pretty awesome too; I wouldn't mind owning one of those too! But I can only get one, so I placed my order for the JH13 today.


Edited by shotgunshane - 8/29/13 at 5:55pm
post #135 of 524

I'd like to add that if I wear the UERM's very loosely, with the tops of the housings practically falling out of my ears but the bottom portion pushed in, I can wear them comfortably for much, much longer.  The signature is definitely growing on me, I just wish that upper peak was slightly tamed.

New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
Head-Fi.org › Forums › Equipment Forums › Portable Headphones, Earphones and In-Ear Monitors › The $999 vs $99 Challenge Tour!