Bassist looking to make the jump from Universals to Custom IEM's
Sep 12, 2009 at 8:03 PM Thread Starter Post #1 of 6

bbanderson

New Head-Fier
Joined
Sep 10, 2009
Posts
2
Likes
0
Hello all,

I am a bassist and also do FOH audio and play drums as needed. I have done quite a bit of session work in the past (listened to mixes in some pretty good rooms) and have a bit of history with Shure E3's. The E3's broke in the case (bummer) and I bought a cheap pair of M-audio's IE-10's (I think) which I hated, they would not stay in my ear. Currently I use a new pair of 3's from Shure and I don't like them as much as the older ones I had (new ones were a gift, so can't complain too much!!). Monitoring is through an Aviom system and I have an IPod touch for listening to music when I travel. I am not a true audiophile as many of you are, but I am a semipro bass player and require decent isolation, good, smooth, accurate bass, and comfort.

So... I am looking to upgrade to customs, and have read about every thread regarding the Westones, JH Audio, Fidelity's, Livewires, and others. Most of the threads have been from audiophiles, and while I value the information greatly, I guess I need some information from folks who are using these in live monitoring situations, with hard hitting drummers and some movement (no dancing though!!)

So, any thoughts would be appreciated. I would like to keep the price tag under $500 and am currently considering JH5 pros and Fidelity Duals.

Thanks all...

Brian
 
Sep 12, 2009 at 9:35 PM Post #2 of 6

dnullify

1000+ Head-Fier
Joined
Mar 24, 2008
Posts
1,136
Likes
56
Sep 13, 2009 at 4:59 AM Post #3 of 6

markheaps

New Head-Fier
Joined
Nov 23, 2005
Posts
47
Likes
10
I'm not a musician, so I can't comment from that perspective, except to say that you'll probably appreciate the added isolation from customs. You should be able to get a pretty good monitor mix out of your Aviom with either of your choices.

I've experimented with my Livewires for FOH, and will say that I'm not sure any customs would be a good fit for that. I prefer to listen to the live mix and use the phones for minor tweaking. Taking customs in and out for that can get to be a bit of a nuisance. For me, a good set of closed cans work best for FOH, and the Livewires get to shine for personal listening.
 
Sep 13, 2009 at 9:41 PM Post #4 of 6

TyRip

New Head-Fier
Joined
Jul 9, 2007
Posts
44
Likes
10
I use my Fidelity duals every week for stage monitoring via an Audio Technica M3 wireless system.

Customs are absolutely the way to go, and my main reasoning in that you can push up underneath your ear and break the seal to hear someone speaking/saying the next song or other instructions, etc. and then just let go and the seal is perfect again. I find this invaluable on stage, and there is no way that I know of to make this happen with tips on universals, outside of wearing a mic rig and pressing a button to hear. The customs method is way easier.

One thing with my setup is how sensitive the Fidelitys are. I get a moderate amount of hiss from the M3 pack's headphone out, but it's nothing that is competing with the signal when listening at medium volume levels.

I have no issues with seal or isolation as far as moving around, opening my mouth, smiling, etc. It is extremely rare to have a split second where some weird jaw movement will break the seal in one ear, and is never a big deal to me at all.

My isolation level is at least close to when using the black foam tips on Shure E3s. I always have to add overhead mics on the kit in my ears mix because I can't hear enough of the cymbals and snare without it (we don't close mic everything, typically just kick and overhead. I also play with a subdued drummer, but I still think you would be better off with customs with a heavy hitter as long as your set fits correctly.
 
Sep 14, 2009 at 4:20 AM Post #5 of 6

qusp

Member of the Trade: Twisted Cables
Joined
Jun 18, 2008
Posts
7,743
Likes
61
Quote:

Originally Posted by TyRip /img/forum/go_quote.gif
I use my Fidelity duals every week for stage monitoring via an Audio Technica M3 wireless system.

Customs are absolutely the way to go, and my main reasoning in that you can push up underneath your ear and break the seal to hear someone speaking/saying the next song or other instructions, etc. and then just let go and the seal is perfect again. I find this invaluable on stage, and there is no way that I know of to make this happen with tips on universals, outside of wearing a mic rig and pressing a button to hear. The customs method is way easier.

One thing with my setup is how sensitive the Fidelitys are. I get a moderate amount of hiss from the M3 pack's headphone out, but it's nothing that is competing with the signal when listening at medium volume levels.

I have no issues with seal or isolation as far as moving around, opening my mouth, smiling, etc. It is extremely rare to have a split second where some weird jaw movement will break the seal in one ear, and is never a big deal to me at all.

My isolation level is at least close to when using the black foam tips on Shure E3s. I always have to add overhead mics on the kit in my ears mix because I can't hear enough of the cymbals and snare without it (we don't close mic everything, typically just kick and overhead. I also play with a subdued drummer, but I still think you would be better off with customs with a heavy hitter as long as your set fits correctly.



wow!! what an excellent post. I agree wholeheartedly, the text in bold is such a simple tip, but even though that is the way I remove my JH13, I never thought to use this technique in this way; AWESOME TIP!!
beerchug.gif
I use my JH13 for monitoring mixes in logic at home in preference to my fullsize cans. sometimes I will use the HD600, but they are not as accurate as the JH13. so fantastic to get such great quality sound in a package that I can also use as my daily rig.

to the OP:

in regards to movement; if you have a good fit, not only are they supremely comfortable, but they are not moving anywhere, so no matter how energetic you are, I cannot see them being anything but perfect for stage work. just look at the likes of Brittany Spears and all those type of pop 'singers' where energetic dance and acrobatics are a large part of their stage show (not a fan, but a good example) I would say a large percentage of stage acts large and small would be using customs these days. not only are they easier and more consistent from ear to ear with regard to getting the mix right at soundcheck, but they also protect you ears. so as a bassist I dont think you have anything to worry about. just make sure to spend the time with your sound guy getting the right mix of ambient noise mixed in with your bass as well as a percentage of drummer or whoever you take your cues from.

also if you have been using the shures for on-stage monitoring, I feel you will be blown away by the sound of quality customs. I have not heard the JH5, but reports are good and if my JH13 are anything to go by, they will leave the shures in the dust. I personally would go with JH over the others; even though you may not get as many drivers for your money; he pretty much invented the custom IEM and his business is driven by and catering to show business. i'm sure the JH5 is excellent and see no reason why it wouldnt sound as good as or superior to the livewires or alien ears products.

I think any of the choices you mention are good though.
 
Sep 15, 2009 at 3:13 AM Post #6 of 6

bbanderson

New Head-Fier
Joined
Sep 10, 2009
Posts
2
Likes
0
Thanks for all of the replys, I appreciate it. I am leaning towards the JH Audio IEMs, and from what I have read the biggest factor in folk's success is the accuracy of the mold. Also, I am not planning on using the IEM's for FOH work, just trying to give y'all an idea of what i have experienced in terms of audio environments (mostly live, mildly compressed, dynamic listening environments). Again, thanks all, I sure appreciate it. When I recieve a pair of customs I will definitely try to add to the reviews here for everyone's benefit.

Brian
 

Users who are viewing this thread

Top