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Table of Earphocalypse

  1. vaziyetu
     
     
     
    i'm listing my tested in-ear earphones and provide some informations. there's no lies there (but mistakes always can happen) and i'm not someone who worry about the feelings of some companies or guys. all fo the items mentioned here are bought by myself (i'll note if a company send me a unit and i'll immediately mark it as a top performer (kidding :D)).

    my ratings are dynamic (new players can affect the whole picture). my thoughts are also dynamic, so they can vary in time. plus that, i possess a dynamic body which is actually very athletic. which also means that i'm very hot but this is not directly relevant to our subject... in conclusion, i do not even hesitate to change the ratings when necessary. you'll most likely see small differences but if you caught a sudden big change about a particular item, search the reason in my product reviews. my ratings are so unstable they can even move out from the borders of my table! if you caught a moving rating, shoot at first sight and report to me, thank you very much!
     
    by the way, models listed in this table are arranged from better to worse (to my own "overall" calculation) but without any final rating. i don't use overall ratings because it'll be painful to recalculate them in every single change. especially if you consider that all of those efforts are just for a little reference after all. they don't need to be conclusive and for that, giving them overdetailed ratings like "7.8" or "4.3" just seem unrealistic to me. if you want to hear a little more details, you can read my reviews but listening an earphone yourself is surely a better way.

    i only consider the sound on my table. isolation, fit, price or other things are your concern. i only mean business and i'm trying hard to be accurate about my comparisons. it's very hard to notice small differences in earphones, especially if they sound very close to each other and i'm trying to archive that difficult purpose. if you don't know what to do about this, you can always respect (or troll :D)
     


    i'm redesigning my tables, work in progress...
     
    new simplified version:
     
     
    Bass​
    Treble​
    Vocals​
    Separations​
    Sound Size​
     Audio-Technica CKS77 (aliexpress)
    3​
    3.5​
    4
    4.5
    4.5
     Audio-Technica CKS90LTD (aliexpress)
    2.5​
    3.5​
    4
    4.5
    4.5
     Audio-Technica CKS99 (aliexpress)
    1.5 - 3​
    4
    4
    4.5
    4.5
     Koss Plug
    3.5​
    2.5​
    3.5​
    4
    3.5​
     Vsonic VSD3
    2.5​
    4
    3​
    3​
    3.5​
     Moxpad X6
    3​
    1.5​
    3​
    3.5​
    3.5​
     Moxpad X3
    2​
    3​
    3​
    3​
    3.5​
     Brainwavz Beta
    1-3.5​
    3​
    3.5​
    2-3.5​
    2.5-3.5​
     Audio-Technica CKS990iS
    1.5 - 2.5​
    5
    4
    4.5
    4.5
     Audio-Technica CKS77X (aliexpress)
    2.5​
    2​
    2​
    2.5​
    2.5​
     Audio-Technica CKS990 (aliexpress)
    2.5​
    2.5​
    4
    4.5
    4.5
     Audio-Technica CKR10 (aliexpress)
    2​
    2.5​
    5
    2.5​
    4.5
     Vsonic VSD3S
    1​
    4
    3​
    3​
    3.5​
     Audio-Technica CKR9LTD (aliexpress)
    1.5​
    2​
    4.5
    3​
    4.5
     Pioneer CL751 / CX8
    5
    2.5​
    2​
    3​
    3​

     

    new detailed version:
     
     
    Bass​
    Treble (14 khz)​
    Acoustics​
    < 50 hz​
    < 80 hz​
    Quality​
    Detail​
    Separations​
    Vocals​
    Sound Size​
     Audio-Technica CKS77 (aliexpress)
    3​
    3​
    3.5​
    4.5
    4.5
    4
    4.5
     Audio-Technica CKS90LTD (aliexpress)
    2.5​
    2.5​
    3.5​
    4.5
    4.5
    4
    4.5
     Audio-Technica CKS99 (aliexpress)
    3​
    1.5 - 3​
    4
    5
    4.5
    4
    4.5
     Koss Plug
    3.5​
    3.5​
    2.5​
    4
    4.5
    3.5​
    3.5​
     Vsonic VSD3
    3.5​
    2.5​
    4
    5
    3.5​
    3.5​
    3.5​
     Moxpad X6
    3​
    3​
    2.5​
    3​
    4
    3.5​
    .3.5​
     Moxpad X3
    2​
    3​
    3​
    5
    3.5​
    3.5​
    3​
     Audio-Technica CKS990iS
    2​
    1.5 - 2.5​
    4.5
    5
    4.5
    4
    4.5
     Audio-Technica CKS990 (aliexpress)
    2​
    2.5​
    2.5​
    2.5​
    4.5
    4
    4.5
     Audio-Technica CKR10 (aliexpress)
    3​
    2​
    2.5​
    2.5​
    2.5​
    5
    4.5
      Audio-Technica CKR9LTD (aliexpress)
    3​
    1.5​
    2​
    3​
    2.5​
    4.5
    4.5
     Pioneer CL751 / CX8
    5
    5
    2.5​
    2​
    2​
    3​
    3​

     
     
    old one:
     
     
    Bass​
    Treble (14 khz)​
    Acoustics​
    < 50 hz​
    < 80 hz​
    Quality​
    Detail​
    Separations​
    Sound Size​
     Audio-Technica CKS77
    3​
    3​
    3​
    4​
    4
    4
     Audio-Technica CKS90LTD
    3​
    2​
    3.5​
    4.5​
    4
    4​
     Audio-Technica CKS1000
    -​
    -​
    -​
    -​
    -​
    -​
     Koss Plug (y)
    3.5​
    3.5​
    3.5​
    4
    3.5​
    3.5​
     Vsonic VSD3
    3​
    2.5​
    4
    5
    3​
    3.5​
     Moxpad X6
    3​
    3​
    2.5​
    3​
    3.5​
    3.5​
     Brainwavz Beta
    -​
    -​
    -​
    -​
    -​
    -​
     Audio-Technica CKS55 ~
    3​
    3​
    2.5​
    3.5​
    3.5​
    3.5​
     Koss RUK30
    2.5​
    3.5​
    2.5​
    4
    2.5​
    3.5​
     Moxpad X3
    2​
    3​
    3​
    5
    3​
    3.5​
     Audio-Technica CKR9LTD
    3​
    2​
    3.5​
    4
    4​
    4​
     Audio-Technica CKS99
    3​
    2​
    4
    5
    4
    4​
     Audio-Technica CKS990iS
    3​
    1.5​
    5​
    5​
    4​
    4​
     Audio-Technica CKR10 (x)
    2.5​
    2.5​
    2.5​
    2.5​
    3​
    4.5​
     Brainwavz R1 ~
    3​
    3​
    3​
    2​
    4
    3.5​
     Vsonic VSD3S
    2.5​
    2​
    4
    5
    3​
    3.5​
     Shure SE215 ~ (x)
    2.5​
    2.5​
    2.5​
    4
    4.5
    3.5​
     Vsonic GR02 BE / R02 Silver ~
    2.5​
    2.5​
    3​
    3.5​
    4
    3​
     Brainwavz S1 / S5 ~
    3​
    3​
    3.5​
    3.5​
    3​
    3.5​
     Koss i150
    3.5​
    3.5​
    3.5​
    3​
    3​
    3​
     VJJB K1 / K1S
    3​
    3​
    3.5​
    5​
    3.5​
    3​
     Brainwavz M3 ~
    3​
    3.5​
    3.5​
    3.5​
    2.5​
    3​
     JVC FXT90 Gold ~
    3​
    3​
    2.5​
    3​
    3​
    3.5​
     MOE SS01 / TTPOD T1-E ~ (x)
    2​
    3​
    3.5​
    5
    3​
    3.5​
     Audio-Technica CKS55X ~
    3​
    1.5​
    3.5​
    4.5
    3.5​
    3.5​
     Audio-Technica CKR7
    3.5​
    3.5​
    4
    5​
    2.5​
    3​
     Ostry KC06A
    2.5​
    2.5​
    3​
    4
    2.5​
    3.5​
     Meelectronics M-Duo ~
    2.5​
    3​
    4
    4
    2.5​
    3​
     Muvit Flat Beat (x)
    1.5​
    2​
    2.5​
    4
    2.5​
    3.5​
     Brainwavz S0
    2.5​
    2.5​
    3​
    3.5​
    2.5​
    3​
     AIAIAI Pipe
    3.5​
    3.5​
    2.5​
    4​
    3.5​
    3​
     VJJB V1
    1​
    2​
    3.5​
    5
    2.5​
    3.5​
     Pioneer CL751 / CX8
    5
    5
    3​
    2.5​
    1.5​
    3​
     Audio-Technica CKF500 ~
    2.5​
    2.5​
    2.5​
    3​
    3.5​
    3​
     Sennheiser CX 300-II ~
    2.5​
    3​
    3.5​
    5
    1.5​
    3​
     Auglamour R1 / R8
    2.5​
    3.5​
    3.5​
    5
    2​
    3​
     Brainwavz M4
    2.5​
    2.5​
    3​
    3​
    3​
    3​
     Brainwavz M5
    3​
    3​
    3​
    3.5​
    2.5​
    3​
     Tennmak Dulcimer ~
    2.5​
    2.5​
    2.5​
    2.5​
    2.5​
    3​
     Xiaomi Piston 2 ~
    2.5​
    2.5​
    3​
    2.5​
    2.5​
    3​
     Audio-Technica CKF303
    1.5​
    1.5​
    4
    5
    3.5​
    3​
     Audio-Technica CKM500 ~
    2.5​
    2.5​
    2.5​
    3.5​
    3.5​
    3.5​
     Brainwavz Delta ~
    2.5​
    2.5​
    3​
    4
    2.5​
    3​
     Soundmagic E30 ~
    2.5​
    2.5​
    3​
    3.5​
    2​
    3​
     KZ ATE
    3​
    3​
    2.5​
    1.5​
    4
    3.5​
     SIDY DM2 / DM3 ~
    2.5​
    3​
    2.5​
    1​
    2.5​
    3​
     CoGoo!! T02
    2​
    1.5​
    2.5​
    3.5​
    3​
    3​
     Brainwavz R3
    0.5​
    0.5​
    4.5​
    4​
    3.5​
    3.5​
     Havi B3 Pro I ~
    1​
    1​
    3​
    4.5
    5
    5
     Brainwavz M2
    1.5​
    1.5​
    3.5​
    4.5
    2​
    3.5​
     Audio-Technica IM50 ~
    0.5​
    3​
    2.5​
    0.5​
    4
    4
     LG EAB62209201
    1​
    3​
    3​
    3.5​
    2.5​
    3​
     Audio-Technica C505i ~
    0​
    0​
    3​
    3​
    3​
    3.5​
     Koss KE7
    0​
    0​
    2.5​
    1​
    3​
    3.5​
     Muvit Muzip
    un​
    lis​
    ten​
    a​
    b​
    le​
     Fake Sony EX300AP
    un​
    lis​
    ten​
    a​
    b​
    le​

     
     
    (x) these earphones can't handle max bass & treble amplification together.
    (y) Koss Plug needs extreme EQ settings (note the "extreme" part).
    ~ i need to check these earphones again for final rating adjustments
     
     
    brainwavz units suffering from very bad bass problems lately. my second S0 was considerably weaker than the first one. my last 2 M5's were affected too. i talked with mp4nation and they sent "tested" units to me. these "tested" units were faulty too. one of the 6 beta's i received was also affected. rest of the beta's have some frequency balance differences to each other. this is especially bad for the first time buyers who don't know the original performance. facing with those situations aroused some serious suspicions in me, about the M2 and R3's (and also AP001's which is an amplifier) bass performance. i'm striking out all of the earphones that have continuous bass problems (until brainwavz stop sending "tested" faulty units).

     
     ​
     
    * Bass / Depth: maximum amplification capacity of 30-50hz deep bass frequencies. also contains some additional factors affecting, such as the size and separation level of the bass (usually directly related to the general acoustic ratings of the earphone but not always).

    Bass / Strengthonly counts the maximum undistorted punch level reached, regardless of the hertz value and other factors.

    Treble / Quality: investigates how lifelike is the treble production. low quality but higher detail can be fatiguing.

    * Treble / Detail: represents the detail level of high frequency instruments like cymbals. low value equals "shorter", "uncomplete" treble reproduction.

    *
    Acoustic / Separation:​
     the horizontal size of the acoustic. this measures distance between the sounds on the forth and back. also measures the distance in different frequencies on the same side.
     
    Acoustic / ​
    Sound Size:
     represents the vertical size of the acoustic, i.e. how "big" really is the soundfield.
     
    when i first started to talk audiophonish, things were so simple for me. i was absolutely sure that what "V Shaped, Mids Forwarded" etc. means. but after some time spent on the forums, i noticed that my understanding of these terms is quite different from others and figured out that i wasn't the only one in the same situation.

    so i stopped using these common terms and tried to be more specific and unique. but misunderstandings between individuals are always ought to happen. i'll share some of my thoughts about the most heard common terms here...

    V Shape: i see there's two different kind of this term and no one cares about which is which. ..

    first one, which i call the "frequency balance" instead, is actually can be modified very easily with an equalizer and/or bass/treble section on your source. that easy it is. so if we can change the balance of an earphone that easy, why should we base our thoughts on it ?

    on the second, some people use this term as a way to indicate a good or bad part in a particular earphone. example: if the earphone is good on bass and treble alone but it's mids (acoustics) are limited, then here's your "V Shape" term comes in again...

    the problem is: we don't even know which one they talk about. even worse, there's some people who calls every earphone with a good bass and treble "V Shaped", even if there's no problem with it's mids. i think this confusions are impossible to be avoided because the term itself is not suitable to include acoustic parameters within.

    Forwarded/Recessed/Laidback: mostly the same problem with the V Shape above. it can both refer to the frequency balance or frequency separations. is the subject is "treble" or "bass" then there's only the balance option available and it's pretty useless as i explained above. but when it comes to the mids, the real confusion starts...

    because if the earphone's separations are successful, some sounds will play close to ear, while others further. imagine that someone called an earphone's mids "forwarded", what he is actually referring to ? to the sounds on the back or forth ? are we sure that he is not talking about frequency balance again ? nope, we can't be sure about anything...

    and here's the worse... some people again uses this terms to indicate something good or bad. more worse, some of them using the same term as good, while others bad. for example, a forwarded treble can both be good or bad for a specific persons taste.
     
     
    i only use my computer to do anything. i'm not a mobilized nor civilized person. i hurt feelings of mobile people all the time and they don't like me, neither i like them. we're continue to living just like that and it's just like that.
     
    i use my legendary Audigy 2 ZS or more legendary Audigy DE on windows XP (W7 has a weird EQ limiter). this cards are full of bass & things. i also used more pricier "blah blah blah featuring" Auzen Prelude 7.1, X-Fi Elite Pro and Sound Blaster Z however they do not make any difference about the sound quality and for the worse, their max bass capacity is considerably lower.

    however, my sound cards require an amplifier in order to reach high volume and bass. i used a number of amplifiers and find out that Phiree mini-ear is the best in it's price range. i'm using the plain "mini-ear" which is a desktop version. they released a "mini-ear V3" as a mobile model which incorporates weaker bass unfortunately (but still can compete other mobile amps).
     
    "with what i listen" part is explained. now let's begin the "how i listen" part: previously i was using VLC Media Player but later i noticed that the sound of 14khz in it's EQ is far worse than Foobar2000's 14khz. so i started using Foobar2000. then i noticed that FFDShow's parametric EQ is better than everything so i started to use MPC HC + FFDShow. i'm still using this combination.
     

    i am coming...
     
    it's coming...
     

      
    it's coming...
     


      
    it's coming...
     

       
    it's coming...

      
    it's coming...

      
    it's coming...


     


     




     ​
     
     ​
    "SIZE OF SOUNDS" AND "THE ACOUSTIC" EXPLAINED
    warning: awful painting skills (sponsored by microsoft paint)​
     

    below an illustration of the soundfield (soundstage) of sennheiser cx 300-II, brainwavz M4-M5, Xiaomi Piston 2 and similar devices with low acoustics. this is just an example and do not represents the whole thing (the purpose is: giving the idea) and small differences between models.
     ​
     
     
     
        mids  vocals  bass           ​
     
                             
     
     

    sounds are too close to each other, in other words there's no frequency separation, which is very unrealistic. what you hear in this acoustic is mostly the vocals. notice the size of vocals & mids are nearly the same. which puts the instruments to the background. vocals are overpowered in this acoustic. and here's the important thing: don't let anyone or any company to sell this kind of acoustic to you as "vocal emphasized sound" this is no good for anything. it can only be good if the total size of acoustic is able to accept such big vocals. and this is not an example of big vocals by the way, the vocals in this example are normal in size, they seem big because everything else is small... beware!
     
    mids are lean. which means the instruments are too close to each other. which is pretty unrealistic. look at this picture, can you tell which instruments are in back or forth ? this is what i call "the acoustic". mids are have to be wider, instruments have to be separated from each other for realistic and detailed instrument reproduction.  

     this is your ear canal (believe or not)
     
     
     

     
     the size of sounds are small as you can see. i call this "size of sounds". this is about how big really is the soundfield, but only in vertical size (vertical means up and down, if you don't know)... 

     
      
        

     
     
     ​

     
     
     


    now look at the picture on the above. what do you see different on Brainwavz M2 ? now, the main frequencies are more separated, and the size of sounds are improved. these are the positive sides... but the acoustic of mids are still the same and half of the bass is gone unfortunately (but this is not the main subject here).  the vocals were a little smaller vertically and bigger horizontally in M2 but i'm too lazy to edit the picture. make the size of sounds a little bigger, mids and vocals are a little wider than you'll reach to the ostry kc06a :) because it's a bigger sounding device but it's mids are still limited so it's soundfield is a copy of M2.



     

     
    now we're at the final chapter... picture on the left represents the devices like brainwavz s1-s5 etc. which are usually get a 3 or 3.5 points from me. and on the right, there's the top performing devices like koss earphones, brainwavz r1, moxpad x3, havi b3 pro I etc. both kind of devices offers good separated mid layers thus their instrument separations are fine, but the devices on the left are a little limited due to smaller size of sounds and worse designed mids. you can easily recognize the difference by trying to detect where is the vocals, if you hear all of the instruments behind the vocals then there's something wrong about that earphone's soundfield. vsonic g/r02's mids are a copy of the right picture but they're small in overall size, that's why they get a 5 on the acoustic but lower in size...
     
    now look at the whole pictures again... and tell me you can live with xiaomi piston 2 or cx 300-II... can you see how big is the difference ? without the required acoustic of mids you cannot hear details in your music (or sounds). it's impossible and that kind of devices are trash. if you think you can bear this kind of acoustic for better bass or treble (theoretically speaking, they do not deliver anything better), that's your choice but i'm not going to use anything with a small sound size or acoustic. 

     ​

     ​

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  1. leilaa
    this is top notch explanation! ive learned so much in sucha short time
  2. DJScope
    top kek!
  3. Arnold Rockwell
    Why are there no Sennheiser headphones?  I love my 598s.
  4. 4nak1n
    Wow, very impressive. Thank you so much for your hard work. It help me a lot.