I have a little dilemma. I need IEM's for under $100 or less that fit my rather picky sound signature. As of now, I have had the Meelec M6's and the VSonic Gr06's (which broke after only one month! I have absolutely no idea how; I was babying them like none other).
Due to the fact that I am a beginner compared to most of you, I can t really say what type of sound I want (in terms of warm, dark, etc.) To try to give you a better understanding of what I want in an IEM, I'll just go through aspects of music I'd like to hear.
First off, my tastes. I am mostly a rock/metal listener with music ranging from Muse, punk such as Rise Against, and slightly heavier stuff like Slipknot, Trivium, and Avenged Sevenfold. By the way, I try to keep my songs above 192kbps but I have occasional songs around 128.
Now, things I like to hear in a song. I really love hearing all aspects of drums in my music. Whether it be the kick of a drum or the crash of a cymbal, I like to hear the drums clearly. I prefer my bass drum sounding like a loud, deep pat rather than a thump. I would very much enjoy the cymbals to be very clear and realistic. Instrument separation is one of my favorite things too: hearing the bass guitar but not having it overwhelm the song is something desirable.
I think it's pretty dear that I don't want a very bassy IEM but beyond that I'm unsure. Bright, mid-central, analytical, balanced... I'm kind of stuck on what to do.
Also, I do plan to use my IEM's occasionally for gym use (mostly jogging and light weights) but mostly for bus rides and at-home listening. I am afraid to get armature (BA) ones because I have heard jogging in the slightest is risky for them but I am willing to try if recommended regardless.
I have had a look at several IEM's already. First, the ones I would not like: as much as the Etymotic earbuds sound excellent, I can't see myself enjoying the fit and absolute isolation that they provide. I also don't want the GR06 again because I would like a change and it broke. Durability is a large issue for me so I would not like something like a Klipsch or Ultimate Ears style cable that is known to be flimsy.
I have been strongly considering both Rock-it Sounds R20 and R30 (R50 is too costly although it sounds perfect) despite being of BA make. The numerous Dunu IEM's seem decent but almost too bassy for what I'd like. Also, the HifiMan RE400's seem nearly too highly rated to pass up so I have been considering those too.
-Softer rock -> Metal
-Love all aspects of drums
-Not super bassy
-Durability is a huge consideration
-At-home use + occasional gym
-$100 budget! (I'm kind of flexible but I can barely justify spending 100 on earbuds)
Thanks so much for your help. This is my first post so I'm glad to be part of the head-fi community