A Trip Down Memory Lane: IEM Reload Thread
Dec 24, 2014 at 10:41 PM Thread Starter Post #1 of 3

jelt2359

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I got this idea off of Toucharcade, where they have an ongoing series called 'RPG reload'- every week, they play a legendary RPG that came out years ago, just to relive the magic of old.
 
The idea for the IEM reload is to dust off your 'retired' gear of old- the gear that you used to love before the latest and greatest came around- and spend some time with it, recapturing that love of old. And what better time to reminisce than as we prepare to usher in the new year?
 
As a start, I'm thinking of either taking out my RE600, or my UM3X. The RE600 is a lot more recent, so maybe that's cheating a little bit, but I got it when it was first launched so it's been a good long time. I'll spend some time auditioning the two of them later today before deciding.
 
I may even do a 'double reload' and run it out of my TTVJ Millet Hybrid Portable.
 
Dec 26, 2014 at 1:35 AM Post #2 of 3

jelt2359

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I decided to go with the RE600, run balanced out of my HM901. I prefer it on the 'HD' setting.
 
On putting these on, I'm immediately reminded why I once thought the RE600 were magical- yes, the mids. The midrange has a very unique timbre and presence even without being too forward. They really are very, very good. I do find that the mids could do however with a slight bit more air. The bass is a bit lacking in both impact and rumble, but it fits well into the overall sound signature, reminding me of IEMs with more neutral signatures like the Westone W60, and VisionEars Stage 6- although the bass on the latter two, especially on the VisionEars pair, is tighter. The treble is relaxed but detailed- I may have liked a little bit more sparkle there, but that's just a matter of taste. I'm surprised that I now think they lack clarity compared to the other TOTL IEMs I've been listening to recently. I've also heard better soundstage, and better speed, in other IEMs. 
 
 
At the end of the day, I'll keep listening for the midrange (it is, afterall, reload week for me), but I think IEMs have really come a long way...
 
Dec 26, 2014 at 4:50 PM Post #3 of 3

truckdriver

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Okay, I need a reason to get the 846 out of my ears for a bit (this is getting ridiculous). I think I may have to send back the ROCKETS without even spending time with it because I can't get the 846 out of my ears long enough.
 
I keep getting the sneaking suspicion, however,  in the back of my mind that I've had the 846-like sound before (namely with the Shure E5c and Dell Axim X51V from ten years ago). I need to fix the Axim to know for sure. A few months prior to buying the 846, I got the Axim temporarily working in June of 2013 and I thought (at the time) that I didn't know how good I use to have it (no wonder I wasn't impressed with newer DAPs). The soundstage of the E5 with the old Pocket Player app was wide, tall and out-of-head. The background audio app X50Mix was like a simpler form of V4A.
 
I know I've had a really good sound more recently with the 535 a few years ago. Those good sounding times with the E5 and 535 were temporary because I didn't know then what I think I know now about tips and tone-color. From day to day, it was hard to tell that my triple-flange tips were not sounding good because the change is often so subtle. I would use a pair of tips until they literally disintegrated, but it was somewhere in the middle of the tip's lifespan that it sounded very good (to great). The notion that an earphone could “sound great” is a phrase I don't use lightly. I've never written that an earphone sounds “amazing”. The reason is I always compare them to speakers. Hell, they cost as much as speakers so they should sound as good. ----They don't.---But, when the tone-color is close to right, they can get close. Right now, the triple-flange hybrid tips on the 846 are very close. My 9 hour workday driving route is flying by lately. I'm ignoring phone calls and routing them straight to voice mail. Good tone-color makes me anti-social, -- apparently.
 
I think I can simply put these same tips on the 535 or E5 and be taken back in time to when I use to think that portable audio couldn't get any better. The problem is every time I reach for the 846 to remove the tips, I end up putting them back in my ears and that's all she wrote.....
 
BTW, tone-color is called timbre around here.
 

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