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I need help choosing a general purpose IEM

post #1 of 9
Thread Starter 

Hello Head-Fi,

I'm a long time lurker on this site. I've decided to bite the bullet and make an account.

Well looks like my wallet isn't going to be too happy. :(


Onto the topic, I need an IEM for general purpose use with my Clip+ music player and my Galaxy S3 cell phone.
Currently I use the Etymotic Research HF5 and I have some issues with it. Firstly, the isolation is too high for when I need awareness and the cable is microphonic.
Other than that, I love the sound.

What I want in my new IEM:

A somewhat balanced sound (no harsh treble or monster bass)
Low microphonics (an absolute must)
If possible one with a flat impedance curve from 20Hz-20kHz (dynamic), so I kind of want to stay aware from armature/multi-armature
Not an over the ear design
Low isolation (so if a classmate near me calls me out, I can still hear while listening on medium volumes)
Under $100 USD

I tried a friend's JVC Xtreme Xplosives and while I didn't like the sound, I was impressed with the design which had very minimal microphonics.

Looking forward to your responses. :biggrin:

post #2 of 9

I know you said you have been lurking around for a little while, have you taken a look at |Joker|'s amazing IEM review thread. There are over like 300 IEMs reviewed there.

 

http://www.head-fi.org/t/478568/multi-iem-review-303-iems-compared-noble-4s-added-11-28-13-p-813

 

I have found a few up my IEMs looking through this thread and |Jokers| descriptions have spot on.

post #3 of 9
Thread Starter 

Yeah, I've read that thread numerous times, not to criticize him, but I feel he doesn't spend too much time on evaluating microphonics, he is all about the sound which is good.

The microphonics on the HF5 really bothers me, even with the shirt clip.

post #4 of 9

HiFiMan RE-400

post #5 of 9

If you want to hear your surroundings at least to some degree, then you need a ported IEM, or to hear your surroundings even better, traditional earbuds. Traditional earbuds don't give that much bass though. The Panasonic RP-HJE450 IEM is ported, although with the music playing at medium volume you might still not hear your surroundings well enough. When I need to hear my surroundings I use the JVC HA-EB75 earbuds with ear hooks. It is only around $8 and has decent  enough highs and mids for casual listening, but the bass is somewhat weak. When I boost the bass on my player by 8 db though, then it is pleasant enough to use.

 

The most open IEM seems to be the Phiaton PS210. I haven't tried it, but read reviews of it.

 

http://www.head-fi.org/t/484302/review-phiaton-ps210-the-half-blood-prince

post #6 of 9
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by tehsprayer View Post
 

HiFiMan RE-400

Seems too microphonic, but thanks.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by JK1 View Post
 

If you want to hear your surroundings at least to some degree, then you need a ported IEM, or to hear your surroundings even better, traditional earbuds. Traditional earbuds don't give that much bass though. The Panasonic RP-HJE450 IEM is ported, although with the music playing at medium volume you might still not hear your surroundings well enough. When I need to hear my surroundings I use the JVC HA-EB75 earbuds with ear hooks. It is only around $8 and has decent  enough highs and mids for casual listening, but the bass is somewhat weak. When I boost the bass on my player by 8 db though, then it is pleasant enough to use.

 

The most open IEM seems to be the Phiaton PS210. I haven't tried it, but read reviews of it.

 

http://www.head-fi.org/t/484302/review-phiaton-ps210-the-half-blood-prince

Yes, I believe that a ported IEM would be ideal for me. I'm checking out all those models you posted.

I'm not too keen on going the earbud route, because I want a decent bass response.

post #7 of 9
Thread Starter 

I've settled on the JVC FX-500 from Joker's reviews, but I don't know a reputable dealer.

post #8 of 9

amazon? Do they ship to your region?

post #9 of 9
Thread Starter 

http://www.amazon.com/JVC-Victor-Headphones-HP-FX500-Japanese/dp/B0012HKS8E

Last one in stock and no review, I'm a bit afraid.

I really like the design of these headphones from what I've seen. It seems quite v shaped in response, but I can live with that.

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