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£65/$100 IEMs

  1. rossng
    Hi all,
    The cable on my old Shure SE210s has just conked out, so I'm taking this as an opportunity to replace them with some more up to date earphones. I've been doing my research and it seems like the HiFiMan RE-400 and HiSoundAudio Crystal are well regarded, but I'm open to any other suggestions. My budget is £65 - almost exactly $100.
    My listening includes bands like Radiohead, Foals, alt-J, Massive Attack, Morphine, Wild Beasts, James Blake and RHCP.
    From what I've read, the RE-400 sounds noticeably better than the Crystal - but I have a few niggling issues that I need some advice on:
    • While the RE-400 looks to be well built, I am a little concerned about the robustness of the cable compared to the Crystal. It'd be lovely if these new IEMs lasted the 4.5 years that the SE210s have. What do you think?
    • I really enjoyed having good isolation on the SE210s, and I get the impression that the Crystal is as good. I can't find any comparison for the RE-400. Will there be a noticeable difference?
    • The SE210 was BA-driven, but both the RE-400 and Crystal are dynamic. How bad is the sound leakage with vented IEMs? I want to be able to listen to them in a library without worrying about the external volume.
    One more thing - I live in the UK, but I have family visiting New York for a few days this week. If it's easy to pick something up more cheaply there, they're happy to do it for me. I've noticed a lot of stuff is cheaper in B&H than it is over here.
    Many thanks for any help!
    Edit 1: I have also looked at the Etymotic HF5, which seems similar to the RE-400 but not quite as well reviewed. It's outside my budget in the UK but inside it in the US.
  2. mark2410 Contributor
    it depends on how much isolation you need, the re400 doesnt excel there but everwhere else its a real stunner.  so the crystal may be better for you in that regard.  its also rathre bassier than what yoru coming from.
    if budgets an issue there is always the PL-50, its better than your old 210's and isolates as much as you want.

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