Anyone ever own/hear Future Sonics (dynamic customs)?
May 31, 2010 at 12:44 AM Post #31 of 44

ethan961

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We will bribe him with chocolate cake and ice cream. If that fails, we have cookies too.
 
May 31, 2010 at 2:38 AM Post #32 of 44

mesasone

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Found it: http://www.head-fi.org/forum/thread/232312/futuresonics-atrio-m5
 
May 31, 2010 at 8:59 AM Post #34 of 44

Kunlun

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Quote:
Found it: http://www.head-fi.org/forum/thread/232312/futuresonics-atrio-m5



Cn11 was asking if anyone had heard the customs in that thread, too.
 
Jun 30, 2010 at 5:20 PM Post #40 of 44

freealloc

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Hey guys,
Just wanted to let you know I just saw this when I was curious to see what was up with the new MG6's. Anyway, I've got some FS customs that I bought in February. I'll get back to y'all later tonight with my thoughts on them.
 
Brian
 
Jul 1, 2010 at 2:22 AM Post #41 of 44

Kunlun

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Quote:
Hey guys,
Just wanted to let you know I just saw this when I was curious to see what was up with the new MG6's. Anyway, I've got some FS customs that I bought in February. I'll get back to y'all later tonight with my thoughts on them.
 
Brian

awesome!

 
 
Jul 1, 2010 at 8:45 AM Post #42 of 44

cn11

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Yes, very much looking forward to your observations about them. Post them as soon as you're ready, please.
 
Jul 4, 2010 at 11:29 PM Post #43 of 44

freealloc

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Okay, so here we go. I might do some more comparisons and add to this.
 
To start, I began comparing E4's, E5's, and my FS's on Lady Antebellum's "Need You Now". I went ahead and took the E4's out of the comparison because they just weren't as pleasant, lively, and clear as the other two. I usually only use my E4's for exercising since they stay in a little better than my E5's and I don't really want to risk sweat damaging either of my other pairs.
I noted that the E5's and the FS's had fairly similar properties. The kick in this song tends to get a bit lost during the chorus, however I noted it was slightly more present on the FS's due to their better low frequency response. Overall, this song is fairly simple and there's really not much difference between the two on it.
 
I then went to Vanessa Carlton's "Ordinary Day". Here it was again similar, but I did note that I was able to pick out a few more subtleties in the edges of the mix on the FS's. Both had a decently wide sound and sounds felt as they were in their natural places. I do realize that the placement is mainly a mixing issue, however I feel as though some headphones seem to have a wider field that other. As an electrical engineer, it pains me to make such a senseless, baseless claim so I'll admit this could just be in my head. The final point I noted here was in the high frequency response. Certain mid-high frequency tend to make certain muscles in my back feel a bit odd when they get too hot. Weird, I know. The vocals on Be Not Nobody seem to all be really hot and compressed in the highs. As a result, switching to the E5's caused me some discomfort, prompting me to turn it down a bit. I'm guessing the peak I noted is in the 4-5kHz range. The FS's on the other hand were quite smooth and pleasant.
 
Next, I wanted to push the bass response to see what I could get. I've always loved my FS's in this area. As some of you likely know, the FS's have a vented design and a rubber cap can be swapped out to change the vent size. When I received my FS's the smallest still open vent was in them. I use these for mixing monitors and I felt that my mixes were somewhat unbalances like this, so I use the sealed cover. I feel that these give the best response.
I chose Black Eyed Peas' "Boom Boom Pow" for this since there are strong low bass beats with no competing sounds in that part of the spectrum. Here is where I find the most notable distinction in FS's versus my E5's. Both kept up with a nice bass sound, with the E5's a little quieter in that area. The FS's however delivered much deeper into the lows. The lowest beats in this song come in at around 40Hz. This low, what you're sensing is fairly dissimilar to what you're getting at higher frequencies. The beats sounded the same on both, but I really didn't feel the energy of the beats in the E5's. I really felt good strong energy with the FS's. I've had a bassist using FS's before and loves them for this reason. They deliver more feeling that any other in-ear I've used. Don't expect chest thumping bass like having a sub. You will never get that with any headphones. (I've talked to someone once that said he hated headphones because he could't find any where he could feel that bass. I explained that's because the waves aren't physically hitting his entire body. I had assumed that would be common sense...)
 
Finally, I tried messing with some tracks I had laying around which had a very high dynamic range. This is another critical area for the FS's. It seems to me that the FS's keep the same sound even at low volumes. The E5's however have to be brought up to the sweet spot, then if the volume deviated too far from there it either starts sounding very compressed (above) or the low end and clarity drop off (below). 
 
In general, I felt the FS's just give a livelier more welcoming sound. If that't what you like, then they're the way to go.
As for comfort, they feel amazing. I can move around a good bit without worrying about them shifting or coming loose, unlike the E5's. My right ear has only a very small second bend, so that one was comfortable from day one. My left ear is a bit more troublesome and was a little bit difficult to get in at first. It was also slightly uncomfortable for a few seconds after I put it in. With time, however, both fit and feel great all the time.
FS's customer support is also amazing. I had ear plugs from there from a few years back, however my border collie managed to get them and tear them into pieces. I decided to go ahead and order the ear monitors I had been wanting and replace my ear plugs at the same time. On FS's site, this package is actually cheaper than the ear monitors alone. Anyway, I had FS just use my molds from a few years ago and when I received my ear monitors, they were WAY to big. I couldn't even get them close to getting in without my ears felling like they were giving birth. FS recommends you get new mold after 6 months, so I figured they would just tell me I should have gotten new molds. I send them pictures of the new stuff next to the glued together pieces of my old plugs. They asked if I could send everything back to be adjusted; I included my old plugs for them to use as a reference. I got an email a few days after they received all my stuff saying that the adjustments needed merited remaking everything all together. They asked if it would be possible for me to get new molds. I went ahead and did so, sent them in, and got back new ear monitors and new plugs that fit great--all free of any additional charge.
 
As a last note, I want to address the dynamic driver versus balanced armature issue. From the way I look at it, dynamic drivers were developed to sound good. Balanced armatures were developed to be small enough to fit in hearing aids and sound just good enough to understand people talk. I will admit that this last bit is purely speculation, but I  personally think that a dynamic driver is the way to go. At this size, the HF response is just fine. HF response for dynamic driver is only a very big issue with larger drivers. These are 13mm. They also seem to move air better for better LF response. This, one suffices.
Armatures, however, were developed with specific bands in mind--those of the human voice. To be good for music, you need several with crossovers to adjust the the power sent to each driver in order to tune the frequency response to the desired curve. From my perspective it seems to be a case of finding a way to make something work rather then trying to just select the best tool for the job. Furthermore, I don't believe you could get very good crossovers in this setting. It seems that you would be restricted to a first order crossover because active components are out of the question since they can't be powered off a standard headphone jack. Inductors are simply too large to fit in this case. You're then left with just a capacitor.
 
That's what I got for y'all. Let me know if you have any questions. I would also recommend getting a longer cable with the FS's. it's just the right length for running down your back to a monitor pack, but a bit short for using with an iPod, etc.
 
Jul 5, 2010 at 1:47 AM Post #44 of 44

Kunlun

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Great post, brian.
 
Could you talk a little more about how the FS customs handle mid-range and upper range sounds? Are the mids and highs forward or recessed or balanced? How is the treble extension?
 
How much sound leaks out of the vents with the smaller opening? How is the isolation with the smaller opening?
 
thanks!
 

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