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ASG-2, CK100Pro, UE900 and FA-4E XB [reviews] - The dysfunctional family - Page 5

post #61 of 127
Quote:
Originally Posted by MoonYeol View Post
 

Yeah, maybe I should. I have a camera with a macro lens, could do something funny. Hmm, I'm NEVER going to buy the IE800. Cable down, shallow insertion, non-replacable cables, proprietary tips.. No way. 3 of my requirements are: Over the ear cable, replacable cables (or cheap iem) and moderate insertion depth at least.

 

 

I hear you. I wear them with a rather deep fit and over the ear though. It barely works though.

Massive cable noise worn straight down and Sennheiser are selling spare tips for like 30+ euro each! Wtf.

post #62 of 127
Thread Starter 

Haha, they are made from exclusive material made from the illusive Dwarf Capybara's genital glands and refined using milk from premature babies breasts (yes, the mother's hormones can cause infants to produce milk) and then the finishing touch is to make the mesh out of whiskers from bengal cats bred in south of Somalia.

post #63 of 127
Quote:
Originally Posted by MoonYeol View Post

Haha, they are made from exclusive material made from the illusive Dwarf Capybara's genital glands and refined using milk from premature babies breasts (yes, the mother's hormones can cause infants to produce milk) and then the finishing touch is to make the mesh out of whiskers from bengal cats bred in south of Somalia.

Must buy to put next to my alligator head.
post #64 of 127
Thread Starter 
Just order from Sennheiser. You can also use them to make a bracelet.
post #65 of 127
Thread Starter 

Ok, this is where I'm going to be a pain in the ass. Of course you are free to have your own opinions and express them. However. If I'm not mistaking I should say somewhere that this is to my ears. These are my impressions. Claiming that they are not harsh to you is ok. Saying that in a general sense isn't. Have you ever seen a graph of them?

 

 

That's one hell of a peak. It's right across 7-10kHz. If you've ever heard a 8kHz peak I'd say that you would call that sibilant.

 

You say that they are fantastic all rounders. Well, to you they are. My thoughts and sentiments are that to 98% or so of the general population they are NOT fantastic for the music they listen to, no matter what genre. Because there are way better options if you're listening to low bitrate rips of the latest One Direction album. 

 

Now, I really believe that you yourself believe what you're writing. And I think that you might have shorter ear canals than I have. I just suspect that they are the reason I find many iems harsh. Though I'm not the only one. I envy you, who can listen to something that's so detailed as the CK100Pro and that's so bright and not find them harsh, not at all. I honestly envy you. 

 

I'm also quite certain that I wrote that one of the best and at the same time one of the worst things about them are the swiveling connectors. They are way harder to handle than something with normal 2-pins. However when you have them in your ears they are great. And the swiveling also helps with rotation of the slightly angled nozzle. So they are annoying but essential to get a good fit.

post #66 of 127

Great comparison, I'm currently loving my UE900's as I write this! 

post #67 of 127
Thread Starter 

Thanks! However I'm going to rewrite large parts of this, someday. How are you using your UE900?

post #68 of 127

The UE900 are even more versatile, use the bassy, veiled stock version or plug the pinholes for some control of the bass. Use the adapter, don't use it. Use the cable with mic or the one without. The UE900 can fit the needs of many. The UE900 isn't as capable on a technical level.

 

Great post Simon!

 

Just wondering if you comment on the veilness of the ASG-2 (if any) in comparison with the UE900?

 

Currently on a quest for new iems and just dont know what to get! I had the XBA H3s in mind but then read about the ASG so am thinking about those. I enjoy the UE900 occasionally but some tracks really do bring out the veilness which I don't like - particulary in the mids!

 

Thanks

post #69 of 127
Thread Starter 
Thanks! Well. The ASG-2 has a unique quality in that the upper mids are more subdued than the UE900 but instruments like violins still have a little bite. I've also found that meelec balanced tips (the grey biflanges that came with ASG-2) help un that area. I'm currently using them on UE900, ASG-2 and FA-4E.

I wrote quite a post on my phone but managed to delete it...

Right now I have a lot to do but one day I'm going to rewrite a lot of this because I've changed a few details which have affected the outcome.
Edited by MoonYeol - 12/15/13 at 10:15pm
post #70 of 127

Ah thanks for that!

 

Doesn't sound treble happy enough for me =( on the bright side I save money haha

 

Just saw the post with new hybrids from unique melody, very tempting!

post #71 of 127

New hybrids from UM? Link plz?

post #72 of 127
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cotnijoe View Post

New hybrids from UM? Link plz?

A few threads below this:http://www.head-fi.org/t/695632/unique-melody-double-triple-hybrid-universals-announced-um-2x-3x-discussion-thread#post_10075690
post #73 of 127

cool! Thanks for the link. Interested in seeing what UM can pull off :basshead:

post #74 of 127

This is probably the most interesting review I have ever read. Haha really liking the illustration.

post #75 of 127
Quote:
Originally Posted by MoonYeol View Post

 

Below I will post my thoughts on different songs. Beware. This isn't the most coherent writing I've done in my life. I'm going to hide it a bit so you won't get scared just by looking. (Click to show)
Below is a comparison between the three, the rig used is Sabre Dac -> BH out of my laptop.
 
Paramore - Still into you [Flac]
Good rock/pop song, lower pitch details and high pitch details as well as good vocals.
 
ASG-2: Good punch, warm, relaxed, want to toe tap. Eggs and hihat sound a bit too far back for my taste but they're there. Details are definitely there but they're not in your face. Overall a good, intimate presentation.
 
CK100Pro: Good crunchy guitar. The high pitched clocks on the sides are vibrant. Vocals are more forward and clear than the ASG-2. The distorted bass is better portrayed. The kick is there for sure. In the chorus it has a tendency to get lost in all of the sounds. Cymbals sound bright and detailed. Hi-hat sounds right. The sound is just so detailed. So detailed. Really, I can't find any fault here. There is some harshness when listening to louder volumes.
 
UE900mod: Guitar is more crunchy than distorted. Not as edgy. Vocals are smoother than CK100Pro but has a brighter tone than ASG-2. Soundstage is a bit smaller. The high pitch tones are there and clear but not as vibrant. The kick isn't as defined or as hard as any of the others. Hi-hat sounds ok. Snare doesn't really sound dynamic. But overall good.
 
FA-4E XB: Guitar is chrunchy in a timid way. Sounds very pop to me. The high pitched clocks are clear and well placed. Not as vibrant as I remember the CK100Pro being. The distorted bass/synth bass in the end of the first chorus is what sets these apart from the others. It's something that I didn't really notice until now. The kick is tight, has good impact and is never lost. The eggs are clear, not forward but they're there. Cymbals sound a bit distant and lack those great fundamentals that the CK100Pro has. Overall a very pleasant presentation. Could listen until tomorrow.
 
Yellowcard - Southern air [flac]
This song is chosen because there are lots of guitars. Simple as that. Also a good test to try harshness in cymbals.
 
ASG-2: Guitars are thick, really thick. They lack bite. Cymbals are harsh. Vocals are mostly smooth and sound full. Cymbals in chorus are well defined but a bit harsh. They're quite far back. Good kick drum, hits hard but feels a bit soft when isolated in the stick. 
 
CK100Pro: Guitars sound good. Better crunch. Kicks are fast. Snare can get a bit sharp and undynamic. (Probably poor master). Cymbals are harsh but the definition is insane. The sound just disappears and appears somewhere else. The guitars in the chorus are a bit too bright. The whole song is pretty harsh. The bass guitar is lost sometimes. The part where it's supposed to get a bit more heavy doesn't sound "fatter". A bit of the weight is lost but the kick is damn good and punchy. Just not as big as the ASG-2. I tend to listen less to the vocals and more to the instruments and I'm more impressed by guitars, kick and cymbals (well, not in this particular track).
 
UE900mod: Guitars sound warm and crunchy. Not as edgy as CK100Pro. The kick is there. It's not enhanced or elevated, it's just there. The hi-hat is a bit recessed but it's not really an issue. Vocals lack a bit of edge. Cymbals are a bit lacking but not harsh at all. You can hear that there is a lack of detail in the recording but there is no harshness. Bass guitar is audible, it just doesn't jump out to punch you. The same issue with weight as CK100Pro.
 
FA-4E XB: Guitars sound warm and a bit thick. Lacks edge but on par with UE900mod. Kick is clear and impactful but gets lost in the chorus. Hi-hat lacks a bit of the fundamentals but is smoother than any of the others. There is also no real sibilance in the chorus. The bass guitar is quite easily isolated and followed. Has good weight in the stick. The placement of the cymbals is less surgical than I remember the CK100Pro to place them. 
 
Dashboard Confessional - Morning calls [flac]
One of my favourite tracks. I use this to test drums and cymbals.
 
ASG-2: Intro guitars are nice, good pick details, very inviting. Drums hit hard with good tonality. The eggs sound a bit dark. The bass guitar is detailed and rumbles a bit. Good texture but lacks a bit of edge. Drums are indeed very tactile. Crashes and ride sound good. Hi-hat lacks a bit of sparkle but is decent in fundamentals. I feel that the ride is lacking in fundamentals though. The electric guitar sounds soft and thick. Think a bit like a neck humbucker.
 
CK100Pro: Intro guitars sound like single coils instead of the ASG-2 humbucker sound. The drums are more moderate in impact but make up for it with greater detail and may just strike a better balance between tone and impact. The hi-hat, crashes and ride are so right. They sound so right it's almost riddiculous. Great fundamentals and overtones. The electric guitar has better bite than with the ASG-2. The instruments are so good I almost forget about the vocals. The vocals are good as well. Less full but with more edge and bite. I'd say that the soundstage is about the same size as ASG-2 only that it feels airier and that the instruments take up a bit less place. 
 
UE900mod: Intro guitars sound like single coils, slightly warmer than CK100Pro. The picking is less sharp. You can clearly hear the string being picked but it doesn't have that sharper detail. Hi-hat sounds good, cymbals are a bit more laid back. Drums have lesser impact but it's still a good balance between tone and impact and I don't feel that they are lacking impact. Vocals are detailed, not overly full but still have good body. Electric guitars again sound more crunchy than distorted. I feel that there might be some energy lacking in the guitars compared to CK100Pro.
 
FA-4E XB: Intro guitars sound gentle and relaxed. The bass guitar stands out with nice, soft, texture that rumbles a bit. Hi-hat is good but again just lacks a little of the fundamentals. Cymbals are laid back. The kick drum and larger toms really sound good. Borderline too emphasized to sound real. I feel that everything is just a bit soft. It's not as aggressive or involving as I like. But it's not really veiled. It's just something. But the sound is very dynamic and has a strong, tight, well textured bass that's just a tad on the softer side. By that I mean that the contours are a bit rounded.
 
Mumford & Sons - Whispers in the dark [flac]
Used to test for some vocal sibilance, acoustic guitars, banjo.
 
ASG-2: The acoustic guitar sounds full and very intimate. Great sounding. Vocals are detailed. Sibilant in some places but that's the recording. Bass guitar is rumbling and fills up the presentation in a good way. Kick drum hits hard. The banjo is there and it's quite detailed though can be hard to pick out from the rest of the instruments. The acoustic guitar that's added after that pretty much soaks it up. I don't even know if the banjo keeps playing.
 
CK100Pro: Acoustic guitars sound less full bodied. To my ears they don't sound as good as on the ASG-2. But they make up for it with better clarity. Vocals are less full. Very detailed. The banjo picks and unique sound really gets through. There is harshness in the vocals. But not really more than the ASG-2. Only in another way. The banjo and the acoustic guitar is better separated now. There is no doubt about which one is playing; they're both playing.
 
UE900mod: Acoustic guitars sound good. They sound a bit smaller than with the other iems. Tonally good. The kick is there, sounds really good with the bass guitar. Vocals are good, detailed and smooth. Less harsh than the other two. The acoustic guitar is less audible than on the CK100Pro but the banjo is fine. It's slightly less detailed but it's easier to hear than on the ASG-2.
 
FA-4E XB: Acoustic guitars are good, sound real. Not as sparkly or stringy as I would like my guitar to sound. But really good. Vocals are detailed, smooth unless sung harsh. There is sibilance but it's not piercing. It's just there. Banjo is very good. Clear and well separated but not as "picky". Kick is again strong but not overbearing. There is a good separation between the acoustic guitar and the banjo in the stick. 
 
The Lumineers - Morning song [flac]
Just a good song. A lot of room reverb. Acoustic guitars, electric guitars, drums.
 
ASG-2: Electric guitar is again, thick. Vocals are full, almost bassy. Intimate sounding with good detail and I don't feel them lacking in bite. Good room details. Reverb is there but there is no definite end to the room. The sound just kind of stops and gives the impression of a large hall with kind of soft walls. Acoustic guitar sounds full bodied. I don't mind it the same way I do the electric guitar. Drums are again, very tactile. You can even feel the snare drum. Kick hits hard again. Feels very... organic? It feels like a kick does when you're in a rehearsal room. 
 
CK100Pro: The electric guitar is more life like. Sounds better. The vocals sound clearer. There is some sibilance however on a few places. Nothing ear piercing. With more natural edge. The room is more defined and there is more reverb than ASG-2. The acoustic guitar has more brilliance to it, more definition and it still doesn't lack in body. It doesn't fill out the same space though. The whole presentation is airier. Hi-hat is again, insanely good. The ride is full bodied and sounds natural. The kick and snare sound good.
 
UE900mod: Electric guitar sounds good. It's not sharp or harsh. Kick hits with good impact. Vocals are a bit less clear but smoother. The reverb is good, detailed, about the level of ASG-2. The hi-hat sounds good, good fundamentals but may just be lacking a bit in overtones. Ride is full bodied but also lacks the last extension, still good. The acoustic guitar sounds good and it isn't lacking in anything but it's really not excelling in anything.
 
FA-4E XB: Electric guitars sound soft but good. Strong kicks. Vocals are detailed, smooth and the reverb is very prominent. Maybe a bit too much low end in the vocals. Nothing serious, just nitpicking now. I again feel that the room sort of fades out instead of being clearly defined. The hi-hat has good placement and some reverb. It's very good but not anything special. The snare is quite bassy, strong impact. Cymbals detailed and smooth but they're just there, they don't excel and steal attention from anything. The kick is very detailed and well textured. You can feel the air moving back into the kick drum after each kick.
 
First aid kit - Emmylou [flac]
Female vocals with lots of harmonies. Shows character of upper mids quite well.
 
ASG-2: Full sound again. Kick drum kicks, more like a sub bass kick that's soft but there. It's more thumping than kicking actually. A lot of bass guitar and bass notes on the piano. Vocals are place exquisitely delicate. I can really imagine two girls sitting beside eachother, singing together. Tambourine isn't offensive, acoustic guitar to the left is crisp and has body, steel guitar (?) to the right is full and detailed. Very enjoyable song.
 
CK100Pro: The guitar to the right has more edge to it. More definition. The guitar to the left isn't as full bodied as on the ASG-2. The kick is there and it's a bit tighter. Still not very defined. The bass notes are there if you listen for them but they do blend in a bit more. The vocals tend to soar a bit and can be fatiguing I imagine. The placement is almost as good. Though due to the more emphasized upper mids I think that their voices together on the CK100pro just might not be the best combination. At least not on the level I'm listening. Maybe on lower levels. Otherwise the instruments sound great.
 
UE900mod: The guitar to the left sounds good. Like a guitar should. The guitar to the left is more laid back than CK100Pro. Has less body than on ASG-2. The soundstage is smaller than both the others. The kick isn't going to get anybody toe tapping or head bobbing but it's there. Maybe I'm just imagining but I think the vocals are less fatiguing here than CK100Pro but I can't know for sure as I don't have any good way of checking the levels. The harmonies aren't really flattering as they make the vocals sound compressed. It's probably the recording that's not top notch.
 
FA-4E XB: A well balanced sound from the start. You feel the kick.. or hear it.. I just either hear or feel it clearly, don't know which it is. I never struggle hearing/feeling it. Stage is large, vocalists are placed beside eachother, almost sound like they're singing into the same mic. Vocals tend to distort as with the other iems. Guitars are good, have good body and are clear but not as edgy as I like them. The piano is also a bit soft. Tambourine is never harsh. The steel guitar clear and has good vibrato.
 
Diana Krall - The girl in the other room [flac]
A more mellow production. Double bass, piano, guitar, drums. Most of all vocals.
 
ASG-2: Guitar vibrates well, tactile vibrations with good overtones. Vocals are full and smooth with great detail. Again, very intimate and seductive. The plucks on the double bass are felt and there is great texture in the bass. The piano is a bit muffled in its higher notes and overtones. Cymbals I feel are suffering a bit from the lack of treble extension. However it's a smooth presentation that won't offend anybody. Vocals are really seductive. 
 
CK100Pro: Guitar still vibrates well, not as tactile but it's still felt as well as heard. Again, sounds more single coil. Vocals are less full. Greater details in the breathing and articulation. There is an airiness that the ASG-2 lacks. Plucks on the double bass are more defined. Not felt as much. It's brighter with more edge and definition but the bass texture is not as good as the ASG-2. The cymbals sound great. Really great. The piano sounds just right. However I feel that some of the emotion is lost in the vocals. I don't want to follow that Diana Krall home as much as I would the ASG-2 Diana.
 
UE900mod: Guitar vibrates well, some tactile sensation. Sounds a tad bit warmer. Vocals are slightly warm. There is a bit of detail lacking in the upper mids and treble region. Otherwise good. The double bass isn't as detailed as on the CK100Pro. Plucks are about as impactful. Less bass overall than ASG-2. Hi-hat and cymbals sound good, non-fatiguing but lacking the last extension. I'd still pick ASG-2 Diana over UE900 or CK100Pro Diana Krall.
 
FA-4E XB: Good guitar vibrato that's strong, quite tactile. Slightly soft and warm but excellent except there's some detail missing from the moving of fingers/edge. Diana's vocals are detailed, full, her character shines through well. Actually good edge in her voice, not that sharp tone but the details which creates that kind of coarse texture are there. Everything is close to excellency. Feels very rythmic. The background is more black than airy. The room feels medium sized and well isolated. The piano could be brighter. But really, the double bass is close to perfect. Actually, I don't know what could be better except the little edge, the presence in the upper mids.
 
Relient K - Deathbed [flac]
A track that gets very crowded later on. It has pretty much all instruments known to man. Packed in a long song that can show pretty well what an iem is capable of in terms of separation and soundstage.
 
ASG-2: Piano sounds warm and full. A bit lacking in overtones. Vocals are very intimate. Very smooth and soothing. Great detail. There is a bit sibilance. Acoustic guitars on the sides widen the stage nicely. Hi-hat is in the background, pretty good balance between fundamentals and overtones. The bass is filling up nicely with good texture and bottom. It's rumbling on. There is just so much going on here. Brass sounds good, in the background to the left. The accordion is smooth and sounds life like. Strings sound good here. Not too dark. Overall the song sounds very good, intimate and full, not really congested, I'd rather call it well blended. There is some harshness that shouldn't be there. But now I'm not focusing on the best part. The vocals. During the busiest part I'm pretty impressed how the ASG-2 just makes it sound so good. Just effortless. Everything is there. No problemos. The cello is really good and the texture is great.
 
CK100Pro: The piano sounds more balanced. Great details. Vocals are close and detailed. Better texture in the vocals. A bit of sibilance. The acoustic guitars are a bit clearer. The hi-hat and tambourine are more present. The kick is there, not as hard as ASG-2 but it's faster. Brass is more audible and separated. CK100Pro just sounds better overall here. Airier. More detailed. Maybe because there is so much happening. When the ASG-2 was saying: "Hey, there is a lot going on. Just sit back and relax." the CK100Pro is saying: "Hey, look what I can do! Hey! I'm doing all of this right now! It's friggin perfect! Listen to this! No this!". 
 
UE900mod: Piano sounds warm but not as dark as ASG-2. Vocals are close and detailed but are lacking in air and maybe there is a bit of lost resolution in the treble. It's not harsh but it's just not as smooth and detailed as I would've thought. Soundstage is a bit smaller than the others. Kick is fast and balanced, not overpowering. Hi-hat sounds a bit compressed at times, cymbals are better. Strings are good. Balanced and not really lacking. It's just that after the CK100Pro they don't have that same bite. I'm getting a bit of the same vibe I got with the ASG-2 during the busiest part "Hey, it's here. Sit back and enjoy man. There is a lot for you to hear."
 

FA-4E XB: The piano is detailed, you can hear the impact and also the pedal being used. On he softer side. Vocals are detailed and less harsh than ASG-2. Also feels less crowded. The kick is impactfull. Toms sound good. Hi-hat again lacks a little of the fundamentals. The brass lose a bit of character and edge, ending up sounding less life like. The soundstage is a bit smaller than the ASG-2 in all dimensions. But larger than UE900mod. From memory of ASG-2 vs CK100Pro I'd say that the FA-4E XB is also smaller or of the same size as CK100Pro. I would say that compared to the others sibilance is a non-issue. The presentation is a bit like both the ASG-2 and UE900 in that the FA-4E are more relaxed about music. Just letting me tune in what I want to hear. The strings in the end sound a bit soft. (See any pattern?) 

 
Thirty seconds to Mars - Conquistador [flac]
Sub bass, sibilance in the upper treble, a colder tonality, aggressive strings.
 
ASG-2: Kick hits hard, really hard. There is a decent sub bas presence but more mid bass. (Although more with the foam than without.) There is some sibilance. A bit brighter than the usual sibilance. Strings are just a bit dark, lacking that brilliance and aggression. It's an aggressive song but the strings are a bit too soft. The bass drops pretty good. The ASG-2 makes the mids less cold.
 
CK100Pro: Kick doesn't hit as hard. There is sub bass and mid bass. A lot less mid bass than ASG-2. There is some sibilance. Not as bad as one might expect. Strings are clearer and capable of more aggression. The toms are faster but also less heavy. The bass is less impressive. It doesn't really have anything to drop from but there is decent lower bass and sub bass. The overall tonality is colder and feels a bit hollow.
 
UE900mod: Kick has decent impact. Good balance between sub and mid bass. Smoother than both of the others. There are traces of sibilance but nothing that really gets through. Strings are just a bit dark and maybe they're also less detailed. At least it's something I thought about. Toms are focused and fast. A bit lesser impact than CK100Pro, I'd say. Tonality is a bit on the warmer side.
 
FA-4E XB: Kick has good impact. It's not head shaking but it's very good. A good balance between impact, rumble and tone. Vocals are smooth (?!) no sibilance. Hi-hat is missing a bit of fundamentals etc. Same as usual. But this is some infectious **** really. Hard hitting, not bloated or boomy bass. A good lower end, enough warmth to not sound cold (quite cold song). The strings are less aggressive than I would want. The drops have body throughout the range. This is good. Really good. 
 
Underoath - Writing on the walls [flac]
My ultimate congestion test. There are guitars everywhere except where there's bass, drums, singing or screaming. If an iem can pull this off, it's probably not prone to sounding congested.
 
ASG-2: There is some added bass in the beginning. Bass guitar is thumping along. Really makes you want to bob your head. Guitars to the left and right are quite detailed and audible but could be better. Again, I'm missing some aggression on electric guitars. But they sound full and just hits me like a punch in the face. Screams are detailed and powerful. Sung vocals are clear and because they are already on the edgy side, they don't sound off on the ASG-2. The cymbals are taking a back seat but they're there and they sound good. The sound isn't really congested but there is no openness to it.
 
CK100Pro: No added bass. Bass guitar is still there and it's playing. It's just not thumping as good. The guitars are way clearer and more aggressive but together with the hi-hat, crashes and snare it will get fatiguing after a short time. Screams are more accurate and edgy but overall there is less weight behind them. There is a bit more air to breathe, no congestion except the one that's in the recording. Sung vocals have more edge and are clearer. 
 
UE900mod: The guitars sound a bit warmer. Sound is smoother than CK100Pro. A lot smoother and easier to listen to. Guitars have good detail. Less edge but as I said, a lot easier to listen to. Bass is well rounded and has good texture. Screams are good, nothing wrong with them. It's like earlier, hard to fault for anything really. Still hard to find any real strength as well. A little less impact than CK100Pro and a lot less than ASG-2.
 
FA-4E XB: The guitars sound warm, but detailed. They are a bit undefined and lack edge but that's more a problem in the recording. Cymbals are just a little harsh, probably more recording. Sound a bit splashy but are clearly audible. Sound is full, thick, not leaving much space for anything else. Maybe a bit congested. Screams lack edge but have good texture, they lack aggression. Vocals also lack a bit of edge. Solid performance. Hard to fault for anything except lacking in edge.
 
Bonus - FA-4E XB with SF/LF on BH: Space is just crazy. Cymbals soar over my head. Guitars are panned wider, there is a lot of air, screams are litterally scaring the crap out of me. The brighter tonality is really working well here. Kick is solid as usual, maybe hits a bit harder, more sub bass but could also be a bit less of the natural texture. This is just insane. INSANE. It's a binaural feeling to it. I feel really enveloped by this soundstage. This is one of the tracks that gain some kind of surrealistic quality but that still works despite being surreal. It feels like being in a really messy emocore music video. Insane. Just insane.
 
Katie Melua feat. Eva Cassidy - What a wonderful world [320 kbit ogg vorbis]
Added for the sake of evaluating "emotion" in vocals. Kind of a weird thing to say but here's emotion for everyone.
 
ASG-2: Eva's vocals are detailed, warm and inviting. However there is some piercing sibilance at times. Katie's fast vibrato is almost tactile and her voice doesn't show the same sibilance. The bass is VERY solid and well textured. It's soft in nature but it's probably the way it's played. The kick is hard, well bodied and relaxed in that it has quite long decay. The ride sounds a bit thin but delicate. The guitar is warm and pretty crisp. The piano is warm and relaxed. Good soundstage, it feels like some kind of hall. Well separated.There is so much emotion conveyed. It's really touching. 
 
CK100Pro: Eva's vocals are more detailed. You can hear that the recording isn't high quality. The sibilance is there, but it's different. Higher pitched and not that piercing but still stronger. Katie's singing is also more detailed but now there is some sibilance in her voice as well. Her vibrato isn't as tactile anymore which isn't necessarily a bad thing. The bass is more controlled but still full. Kick drum is more focused and faster, still not exceptionally fast, it's a mellow recording. The snare details are better, the ride is even more delicate and detailed. Piano is clearer and brighter. The guitar is crisper and less full. Everything has a bit more detail. The soundstage is about equal. Some of the emotion is lost but I still don't think it's cold. There is something there.
 
UE900mod: The feel I get is that Eva's vocals are less intelligeble, they sort of lack either the great bottom end from ASG-2 or the brilliance from CK100Pro. More of a mid-centric presentation which is weird. There is almost no sibilance present which is a pleasant surprise. When the bass begins to play, I don't feel the presentation lacking anymore. Katie's voice is smooth, so smooth. The vibrato is there but it's not really tactile. The harmonies are less separated but still very good. There is good detail in the snare but less than the CK100Pro, the bass drum feels natural and not overpowering. The ride is less detailed and less extended, giving off a faint tizzle when struck. The piano is good but on the mellow side and not as bright. The biggest upside is the smoothness to the vocals. They're less harsh than the other two. The soundstage is smaller however. Still decent separation but not as big. The emotion is there, it's a more intimate presentation of the instruments but about the same distance to the singers. So it feels more like a large room instead of a hall.
 
FA-4E XB: Eva's vocals sound quite full and smooth with good detail. Katie's voice is well bodied and quite smooth, good vibrato, almost tactile. There is a lot of air moving along with the kicks. The toms sound good, with a great balance between tone and impact. The cymbals are delicate, maybe lacking a bit of fundamentals but then again, they're not being struck with sticks. The ride sounds delicate and thin. Good detail, you really imagine how it looks, all golden, thin, delicate. Good separation of the harmonies. The guitar is clear and quite crisp. It bothers me less with clean electric guitars than crunch or distorsion. Soundstage is good, feels like a very large room or a well isolated smaller hall.
 
Claudio Scimone - Vivaldi Concerto in G major for 2 Mandolins RV532 I Allegro [wav]
Sent to me by Mr. Sweden himself. For trying something classical (I don't listen to classical at all).
 
ASG-2: Good tonality in mandolins, the tones get through good. The impact is not very prominent which makes for a more relaxed listen but I would've wanted more brightness and edge. The strings are a bit muted. The funny instrument to the right (please tell me what the name is) is a bit undefined as to where it is. At times it blurs with the right mandolin. The violins in the end are laid back, trying to lure you into their world, to seduce you. They are a bit darker but still have an ok clarity. There is a strong bottom end. There is good height and placing of everything. I'd say that the one quality the ASG-2 nails here is relaxation and making you forget that it's a recording. It sounds like an insanely large living room where the music is played live.
 
CK100Pro: A lot of details. The plucks on the mandolins are more prominent making it almost overshadow the tones. A very good sense of space due to a more airy sound. Very sharp presentation, in a good way. That funny instrument to the right (again, please tell me the name of it) sounds clearer and is better separated from the mandolin. You can follow the mandolins more clearly when the strings start playing in the end. The soundstage could potentially be a little shallower and lower. The strings don't sound as dark but instead sound more life like. Less lower end but not lacking. However, due to the increased amount of details in the treble, you can clearly hear that this is a recording. It doesn't have that live feeling.
 
UE900mod: Mandolins sound somewhat smaller. Tones get through in a good way, impact is there as well. The violins sound ok but there's something lacking. Maybe it's that last edge. The funny instrument is separated from the banjo in a good way. The soundstage is more of an "in your head" soundstage. Smaller in every dimension. I would say again that the sound is hard to fault for anything. But I could tolerate a bit more low end and a bit more treble extension.
 
FA-4E XB: Mandolins have a good tonality to me, there is a good impact from the plucking of the strings but still lots of tone. Perhaps a bit too dull sounding. The violins sound ok but lack edge. The strange instrument is very clear and well separated from the mandolin. The overall sound is very clean, like a concert hall with large red drapes that absorb quite a lot of sound. The finish is grand. Again, very solid performance.

Really like your taste of music to test and compare all of these IEMs. Underoath!!! Don't know a lot of people that listen to Underoath. Love em.

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