So, I decided to finally take the plunge and order my SE846. Chose overnight shipping as I didn't want to wait. As it was waiting for it to arrive today was killer enough. Get home, open up the shipping box and spend about 2 minutes trying to find the flap or sticker I need to cut so I could open the box. Turns out I just have to peel the damn thing! Anyway, looked over the package contents before plugging it to my phone to try out the sound.
I was using my GSIII trying out the new music app that Samsung released, Milk. Wasn't really impressed by the sound straight from the phone. And when Janie's Got a Gun was playing the drums sounded more to the left. I never really recalled that song sounding that way. Decided to stop using Milk (Didn't realize there was a high-quality option for it that I had to tick on.) and plug it to my Cowon S9. Sounded good, but it just didn't jump out at me. Listened to a few songs on the S9 before really getting down to some serious listening.
Having finished the sampling with my S9, I grabbed my SE530s to make A/B comparisons between the two. Just using 320Kbit MP3s from the Zune player from my PC > Modi > Vali. I kept the volume level the same and all I did was switch the two IEMs. Started going through song after song, and to my ears, there wasn't a massive difference. Sure the 846 bass on the blue filter sounded more "there", and there was better separation of instruments. Strangely, the SE530 sounded louder which I thought was really odd. I looked at the foam tips I was using (The medium sized ones.) and noticed that the mediums that come with the 846 was slightly smaller than the ones that came with the 530s. So I swapped tips between the two. Still the same result. SE530 sounded louder and the 846 only resulted in a slightly better sound. Finally dawned on me that with the 530s I was able to seat the foam tips deeper into my ear canal than with the 846s. So went back to the bag of tips and pulled out the triple flanged tips. Started playing the next track and instantly I could hear the difference. Better resolution and greater separation of the instruments. Female vocals just sounded that much better! Didn't even have to go back to the SE530s to check!
Now, I just need a portable amp/DAC. Looking at getting an RSA Intruder to go with the S9, any of you guys out there have thoughts to share on this setup? Other suggestions on an amp/DAC combo? I'd prefer to keep the amp/DAC to one device. Also actually thinking of replacing my S9 with a Fiio X5 in a few months 32GB is just not enough!). Just let me know if I should be switching this last question to another thread.