FitEar To Go! Parterre - Reviews
Pros: Soundstage, Sweet Sounding, Build Quality
Cons: none so far
Disclaimer:A Friend of mine loaned me the FitEar Parterre for a week in exchange for the purposes of this review.

Details:

The Parterre means flowerbed in French or the paradise seat in a concert hall. This in-ear monitor (IEM) earphone was named after its developer, the wife of Mr. Suyama. Even though it is a multi-driver (balanced armature type), the acoustic filter & network, which are completely independent, the frequency range in-charge realizes an extensive sound quality with stagnant pureness. It reproduces the atmosphere feeling of a concert venue with details like the breathing of vocals, ringing of the drumhead, finger usage of violin, and contrabass present.

Specifications
Unit configuration: Balanced armature driver
Cable: FItEar cable 005 black
Input connector: 3.5mm stereo mini plug

Tracks used:
Radwimps - Zenzenzense
Rage Against the Machine - Know Your Enemy
Eagles - Hotel California (Hell Freezes Over version)
Moira Dela Torre - We & Us
Daft Punk - Contact
Hans Zimmer - Time

Accessories:
As Mr. Rabañes told me that the accessories of the Parterre consisted of a Pelican 1010 case with its interior made rubberized including the ceiling of the case, a soft carrying pouch, cable clips, a set of ear tips, and a cleaning brush.

Design, Build and Comfort

The design of universal IEMS made by FitEar is one of a kind. Its design is similar to a bullet-type IEM yet it is worn over ear. Also noticeable are downslope curve from the shell of the IEM up to its nozzle with the FitEar brand, the serial number printed on the curve, and lastly the infamous titanium horn on the nozzle.

The build of the Parterre for me seems durable. I felt that the acrylic is thick and sturdy, which makes you question the durability of your other IEMs as well. The pins of the Parterre uses a Euro-pin type of connector, which is identical to the connectors used by Sennheiser. I really have no doubts on the sturdiness of those pins since they are renowned for their durability. As for the comfort, I don’t have any complaints in the fit. I’ve asked other people how they felt about it; it’s either a hit or miss depending on the shape of the wearer’s ears. Luckily for me, it fits me perfectly.

Sound

Bass
The bass is quite punchy and has a strong sub-bass feel compared to a FitEar 334. The downside for me however is that I feel the bass quantity is more than the bass quality. It rolls off late and sometimes the oomph is a bit loose.

Mids
I tried the Parterre according to the manufacturer’s recommendation and damn, it is quite pleasing to the ears. I noticed that the upper mids give more emphasis than the midrange yet it doesn’t fall back considering the vocals have life and full of detail in it. The lower mids however bleeds a bit with the bass underneath.

Highs
With the highs however doesn’t have that kind of reach for a treble-head standard, I found the Parterre quite on point and isn’t piercing nor fatiguing overtime. The quality of Parterre is exceptional, boasting tall headroom, an ample amount of air, and with enough sparkle to shine on tracks while not showing any signs of sibilance due to the titanium tube nozzle.

Soundstage
Trying out the sound stage, I played a Hans Zimmer’s Time for this one. With the song starting low, you’ll begin to notice the depth, which is quite impressive for me in this type of an IEM. The width pushes in and while the height however has some limit to it, the imaging of the Parterre catches up and will make you hear the separation of every instrument.

Comparisons

Soranik SK1

With the same technology with FitEar, I considered the SK1 to compare with it because the bass of the SK1 doesn’t reach down quite well though the quality is a tad better in the mid-bass section unlike the FitEar. The Parterre has more rumble than the SK1.

The mids are quite hard to determine, with the SK1 vocals leading yet the Parterre is more fitted with the instruments. Both of the mids are lifted but in different areas. The treble clearly goes to the Parterre with the ample amount of headroom and airiness, which the SK1 lacks. However, both IEMs in my opinion would never reach to a treble-head’s standards. The soundstage is significantly wider in the Parterre, but the layering would be in SK1’s favor. It’s quite hard to determine which of the two is better because each IEM has its own specialty in the different sections. In the way I see and hear, what the other one has, the other is missing.

Conclusion
The old Parterre still lives up to its name today and can still compete with today’s IEMs in its price range. The Parterre is one of my favorites due to its warm and welcoming signature to listeners, with enough ease just for casual listening and for orchestral type of music.

The Parterre is almost excellent for me, with only the stock cable limiting I think its real sound quality. As a solution to this, I did some cable rolling with the infamous and locally made Nawaza cable and it finally showed its true potential. The sound became more accurate, bass is controlled, mids is a bit forward and the treble has gotten its reach.

Anyway, it’s only a dream for me to get one of these since they’re quite rare nowadays. I’d like to thank again my ffriend
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loaning me the Parterre and giving me the pleasure of sharing my insights on this IEM.

Attachments

equalspeace
equalspeace
liked your review! what kind of DAP is that?
Pros: Huge sound stage, excellent tone true to the source, very revealing and scales well with better equipment
Cons: isolation not the best for an iem
I've had my Parterre for a few days now which has given me the opportunity to listen to them extensively. I have little experience with  iem's but I do own the HD800 and T1 as my reference headphones. My listening preference is mostly classical music. I was attracted to these Parterre because I read a statement  from the designer that these were created for classical and acoustic music. He wasn't lying. I have been in the audio game a long time and I have never heard better sound from any headphone with classical music. That is a very strong statement and it is meant to be so. The Parterre is competitive in every way with my full size headphones and in some respects the best of the lot but I am getting a little ahead of myself.
 
When I first received my Parterre I was anxious to hook them right to my desktop system and see what they could do. That was a big mistake. These need to burn in overnight before you ever put them on your ears. Having not taken my own advice I can say that out of the box they were a huge disappointment.  I won't bother to go into a description of how they sounded because by the next morning they were a different earphone entirely. Had they remained as they were out of the box I would have put them in the closet and considered it a very expensive mistake.
 
Those of you experienced know that it is critical to have a good seal with any iem. Only one of the tips supplied with the Parterre worked for me and fortunately it is a good fit. I have ordered several type of tips to try later but for now, I do get a good seal. These need to be worn over the ear and they are very comfortable. I can barely feel them in my ears after a few minutes of listening to music. Interesting that my HD800 is normally considered the most comfortable of full size flagship headphones and I find the Parterre more comfortable for long listening sessions than the HD800. I also find the Parterre better sounding in many ways.  This is a bit of an unusual review as I am daring to compare an iem to a flagship full size headphone. I realize that my application is unusual in that I am using these at home with a high end desktop system. My needs are different. The Parterre is certainly very portable but that is not my application so I can only compare it to my full size headphones. I can say without reservation that it compares very well indeed.
 
It is often said that iem's are "a different experience" from full size headphones. Part of that is certainly true as technically iem's insert into your ear past the pinna so they cannot produce a soundstage in a natural way as in the real world. Some very clever designers of iem's have not taken no for an answer and found a way to create a very believable illusion of a soundstage through brilliant designs. I can say that the Parterre is one such iem. The sense of the original space is recreated with startling reality through the Parterre. There is height, width and depth competitive with my HD800's. Before hearing it for myself I would have thought that impossible. I will even go so far as to say that with some recordings the imaging is more the you are there feeling then my full size headphones. An astonishing achievement from Fitear.  
 
The tonal quality of piano and strings are reproduced with total accuracy faithful to the recording. The bass is shockingly deep and detailed with actual texture blended with the mids so as not to appear overdone but just right. Mid bass is full when called upon to provide the correct foundation for the music. This is a trick that few headphones get right with classical music but the Parterre sails through without ever straining. There is a richness to the tone that is very  faithful to the recording. Bad recordings sound  bad. Good recordings sound glorious in a way that few headphones can achieve. The highs are silky smooth for strings but you still get the bite on brass that you should without ever being offensive. You can hear the decay on the notes of  a piano with stark realism. These are achievements in a headphones of any type not to be taken lightly. That these tiny iem's can get it right is amazing. What's more, these are universal iem's not even ciem's custom molded. The people at Fitear must be smiling at the praise for they know what they have done. These are purpose built iem's that achieve a level of performance with classical and acoustic music that will make it very hard for me to go back to my full size headphones. I would never have thought that possible. If you love classical music as I do you owe it to yourself to hear these Parterre properly burned in and with a good front end. The Parterre provides a very personal intimate experience not to be missed by classical music audiophiles.
Chodi
Chodi
My listening preference is for chamber music and some ensemble. I have listened extensively to orchestral music with the Parterre and it sails through complex passages while maintaining definition and separating of instruments. They cannot recreate the full weight of the orchestra like some full size flagships but it is close. There is a sub-bass in some orchestral music that the Parterre ignores. I think that would be true of most iems. Yet the Parterre does capture the complexity and emotion of the music and on good quality recordings it can bring enough of that low end foundation to be very believable. Honestly I find the Parterre does this much in the way the HD800 does. I don't think anyone had accused the HD800 of being a bass monster either. I would say the two compare in their tonal balance like the same family.
Ethereal Sound
Ethereal Sound
Really nice review! Just wondering,when you say that bad recordings will sound bad, by this do you mean to the level where it is simply not listenable? Additionally, how well do these iem's fare with different genres of music?
Chodi
Chodi
What I mean is that the Parterre is transparent and resolving of the information it receives. Some headphones and also some iem's have a "fun" curve that will cover some of the flaws in the recording. Less resolving iem's would probably be more appropriate for the playback of poor recordings. The HD800 is often commented to have the same quality. Simply, bad recordings sound bad (and they should).
 
The Parterre was voiced for classical and acoustic music. It plays remarkably well with those genres. That would include jazz and vocals. I would not buy the Parterre to play hard rock , metal or hip hop. If your taste runs more to Diana Krall you would be very happy with the Parterre. Listening to Alison Krauss at Union Station on the Parterre is a joy. Studio overdubbed recordings not so much.
Pros: forward sound with good details - wide sound-stage and coherent imaging - not too picky on source - very comfortable fit.
Cons: stiff cable(replaceable) - sound can be fatiguing
 
 
 
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Disclaimer:
Mr Suyama (FitEar) agreed to lend me a pair of To Go! Parterre and 334. The purpose was to give a chance for a maximum of my French fellows from tellementnomade.com to have a try at this now pretty famous brand. We are indeed very glad to have a go at them.
I'm not getting paid nor selling anything. In fact Fitear asked nothing of me, how confident is that!
So before they leave me for one of the big cities in France (a country on earth), I decided to do a little feedback on “le” Parterre. Please take this as one guy giving his opinion and nothing more.
 
Test material:
amp: O2, pico slim.
Daps: Sansa clip+/zip, Samsung yp-p3, Sony a865, Cowon I10.
 
 
 
 
Intro:
Oh boy they're comfy! Really close in shape to the F111, I just fit and forget. And I'm not an easy guy when it comes to fit. IE80 and the eternal search for tips, PL30 hurting me with the outer body, I can't seem to be able to get a good fit with most Shure/Earsonics/Westone universals and had to give up on buying one of those. I need a deep enough insertion to fit my right ear (outer canal is pretty huge).
 
If you have a really small ear canal (most girls) you might want to try any cheap universal working with T500 Comply foam tips just to be sure your canal is large enough (same as Sennheiser IE8/IE80 and fits the same tips). https://www.complyfoam.com/content/Compatibility-Chart-Isolation.pdf
Else your fit will be good and really really comfortable. I feel like I'm using some tiny Q-jays again.
 
 
 
Provided tips are the usual 3size silicon flanges and a large bi-flange.
IMG_2740_DxO600.jpg
 
 
 
 
The Parterre feels sturdy, acrylic is pretty thick and made me question the durability of my jh13.
You won't find a grid to protect the damping filter so you should treat them with care (cleaning tool provided).
 
IMG_2731_DxO.jpg
As you can see Parterre uses the same titanium horn technology featured on the F111 to sustain high frequencies without having to push the driver too hard.
 
 
 
 
IMG_2725_DxO600.jpg
 
Stock cable named 001 is made out of copper and reinforced with heat shrinking cable making it too stiff for my tastes but I must admit it's built like a tank. From what I get the optional cable 000 is silver plated and even stiffer.
That stiffness is such that I hear directly into the Parterre every button I click on my DAP, how badly amazing is that? Cable noises are bad even when using the great clip provided (I want this on all my cables!!!)
There is a really soft memory wire, I usually cut it out of my cables but this one never hurts me. On the other hand people used to a solid grip from the memory wire might find this one lax.
Connectors are proprietary and almost identical to Sennheiser's connectors on hd600/650. You can already find a few places for replacement cables.
IMG_2765_DxO.jpg
 
 
 
 
IMG_2783_DxO600.jpg
nice marking for side and polarity.
 
You get the Parterre in a sturdy Pelican 1010 hard case, the inside is rubberised, this should be compulsory for IEM cases.
The soft carrying pouch has a nice foamy feeling to it.
 
In the end everything feels and is sturdy, you don't look like you paid only the sound.
More tips could be nice, but I usually end up with Comply foam so I didn't mind the scarce choice.
 
 
 
Sound:
 
Bass:
Punchy and strong with less sub-bass than my jh13 don't expect the flat line frequency response here, bass are enhanced and stronger than on a F111.
The idea is power and thump, not much of bloated or immersing bass here, think more 100-200hz sound.
For even more bass and round sub-bass you'll have To go! for the 334 (more bass, less punch)
 
Mediums:
details level and imaging go on with sound signature to give a very lively sound, high mids are loud and give a strong kick to most percussions. On a few musics, this might push the voices back a little, but never as much as I felt on the Merlin.
I tend to find this fatiguing, but keep in mind that I'm a hd650 kind of guy. I usually sacrifice mids to get that almost dull and non fatiguing sound. The Parterre aren't meant for me to begin with.
Objectively mids are good. I admit it and enjoyed the energy of the Parterre mostly on classic. The same way I enjoyed using some ER4, yet couldn't really stand long listening cessions on other music styles without EQ to tame the upper part of the mediums. again my tastes (most of |joker|'s TOTL IEMS make me run away), nothing wrong with the sound quality.
I know this signature and feeling of strong dynamic and authority is attractive to a lot of people, and they shall be satisfied with the Parterre.
 
Trebles:
same as high mids, high frequencies get a boost, at least to the point of getting cymbals as one of the big guys on a rock song.
Cymbals and I have been having a love/hate relationship for many years now. I probably went “hifi” on portable because I couldn't stand the harshness and distortion of cymbals on low end universals (B2= arrrrghhh).
Good news everyone, Parterre knows how a cymbal should sound.
High frequencies don't go very far, but have a stronger presence than 334 which tends to be shy above 10/12khz.
 
In cymbal value, new reference measurement I just invented (take that Dr Olive and Welti) 334>Parterre>F111>most IEMs I've heard under 400$
ER4's cymbal may be top notch clean and for that deserves to be at the top for a pro. Yet FitEar removed some harshness, losing a little bit of the surgical details to gain some micro smoothness. My choice goes to Parterre for cymbal enjoyment (even better with 334 but not the same price range).
 
oh I forgot to talk about sibilance!! there's absolutely none that I could hear despite the bright signature. I'm starting to be a fan of this titanium tube.
 
 
Imaging:
It is really good, with several layers in width and height. Depth looks good, but I don't really have a source to test the extent of that dimension, O2 isn't the king of depth, and the pico slim doesn't know what I'm talking about, at all. So you'll have to ask someone else about the Parterre's depth, sorry about that.
Imaging is really high level and I could spend the entire song mentally jumping from one place to another. I was more impressed by the 334 (in every ways except energy) but to me the Parterre has a more coherent imaging. When the recording is bad and almost in mono, you don't get much. When the recording has an amazing imaging, you get amazed. Moving sounds can be followed from start to end perfectly, when I noticed some tiny ruptures on the 334.
334 is a hell of a fun toy, and will tend to put a multi layered imaging even on some trashy punk song recorded with a phone (each driver gives a different vertical position).
So 334=impressive and fun, Parterre=realistic and coherent. (from memory the F111 is also really good with sound-stage and imaging)
My JH13 (old version) is at a loss here. They're more in the head than anything, but I was still proud of JH's imaging, now I wonder and fear of a bad flu (upgraditus fastus).  The Parterre is in the league of my IE80 for the max distance, but when IE80 is limited to around the head as a minimum distance, Parterre gets inside when it wants to, giving a superior amplitude (IE80's bass still surround me like no BA driver I've tried could do).
 
 
 
conclusion:
First thing I would do if I had to buy this universal would be to get another cable. I want a right angled jack and as little cable noise as I can get. This cable fails to provide my needs. On a brighter note, it seems like you can make it into balanced just by changing the jack.
I strongly believe people would prefer some 50$ custom replacement cable with the right termination, and a large variety of tips instead of the actual bundle.
The Parterre in itself is really good, not too sensitive so HO noises shouldn't be too much of a concern unlike the uber sensitive To go! 334.
Parterre is in essence so punchy that your source doesn't matter that much (punchy to me, it sounds calm in front of an UM merlin). I enjoyed it right out of a Sansa clip+ (let's forget those electronic noises when you change songs), on my Sony A865 I genuinely enjoyed it as it was like an automatic EQ ^_^ (this dap is a high freq murderer on the HO). on my old boy Samsung yp-p3 it was too cold, but no noticeable damping problem. And my cowon I10 was also a good combo but might reveal too much of the slightly artificial sounding of the brand. Of course it will always benefit from a good source/amp but to my surprise I could live without one, and the smaller sound-stage of mediocre sources was still good enough to satisfy me.
 
We're on the bright and punchy side of sound, you don't get any sense that an instrument is muffled and the level of transparency is high. Added the nice imaging and you really need a lot of instruments and bad recording to be unable to pinpoint each instrument. Again It was soon fatiguing for my old ears and really not my cup of tea when it comes to sound signature as I like my frequency response graph to go down, not up. Maybe behind a warm RSA amp I could really enjoy it … “no wallet I'm not talking to you!”
As is I had fun with classical, everything close to groove, and bands like “hybrid” (sorry I don't know what genre this is ^_^). and I enjoyed all kind of music on a warm dap.
 
By the time of this review I couldn't find any measurements or intels so your guess is as good as mine on specs. Suyama san decided to challenge our ears with close to no information. It is said to be a multi driver, and I would bet on 2 as the titanium horn does pretty much the job of a third one. but you shouldn't take my word for it.
 
I hope I didn't do too bad of a job putting my tastes on one side and my “as objective as I could” views of the Parterre on the other. I personally felt more attracted to the 334 (a lot actually) with its round bass and less 3khz boost, but I know this Parterre will make a lot of people happy. Those exactly who would find the 334 to have too much/round bass and miss the strength of a louder 3khz. Adding the F111 to the party as a neutral IEM, I feel like FitEar covered all bases.
 
 
 
 
A few random pictures to get an idea of the real size and side by side with To Go! 334 http://www.head-fi.org/g/a/789702/fitear/
 
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miprasetya
miprasetya
Very good review.....
Do you think that Parterre has more peaky upper mid rather than F111? which one is closer mid sound of the Parterre is it TG 334 or F111 ?
castleofargh
castleofargh
I only auditioned the F111 for a few minutes and even though I have my idea I wouldn't want to give some unconfirmed info, someone having them both at the same time might want to answer that.
for the mids I would go for the Parterre closer to F111 as you can clearly hear the upper mid bump dear to all "flat" IEMs. the 334 doesn't have it so you get that little relief feel to it.
but you also have to consider the increase in bass changing the global balance a great deal. as I said, 334 has a lot of bass, the Parterre has less and tighter bass, and the F111 has just enough bump to get over the lacking feeling I get on BA IEMs when they're flat from 20hz to 1khz.
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