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Can't Decide!!! Etymotic HF5 or HifFiMan RE400

  1. The Fifth
    Hello everyone,

    I’m looking into getting a pair of new IEM’s, however I’m trying not to go over $100. After researching various areas (including this forum of course) I’ve narrowed it down to two and STILL can’t decide.

    • Etymotic HF5 and HiFiMan RE 400

    So I’m looking for some input here on what you think. My musical preferences are below.

    • Classical (Beethoven/Mozart/Bach)
    • Trailer “Epic” Music (Two Steps from Hell/The Immediate/E.S. Posthumus)
    • Metal/Rock (Dream Theater/Nightwish/The Police/Foo Fighters)
    • Classical Crossover (Hayley Westenra/Jennifer Thomas/Escala)
    • Others (Vienna Teng/Hans Zimmer - Soundtracks)

    I am struggling with the two as they do appear to be fairly balanced but, from researching, it seems the HF5’s go slightly higher in treble and RE 400’s go slightly lower. Just not sure which one I would prefer.

    Any thoughts on which of the two might fit best given my musical tastes above? I'm running out of an Ipod Touch and Iphone 5s and large portion of music (classical and soundtracks) is in Apple Lossless ALAC.


    --The Fifth
  2. pjs37
    So I do own a set of HF5's and I love them and they are very good.  My biggest issue and why I don't hardly use them anymore unless I want to block out ALL noise is that I find the microphonics on them to be just outright insanity inducing.  I know this can be an issue on most IEM's but for whatever reason Etymotic's seem to do worse in microphonics then others.  The RE400's which I do not own do use a cloth cable for part of the way and can be worn up which helps reduce that issue.  I found it difficult to get a good loop around the ears on the HF5 though it can be done it felt wierd to me.  So if that is a concern for you then keep that in mind.
    As for the SQ when I was deciding between the two they seemed practically on par with each other sound wise.  Here is a good review: http://www.head-fi.org/t/651419/hifiman-re-400-review
  3. Claritas
    My experience with HF5 was similar, though I'm sensitive to that problem. The trouble is that both models score a 4/5 on joker's chart. So I suggest looking for something rated 4.5/5 or better.
  4. The Fifth
    Thank you both for your input on the microphonics. I've heard both good and bad on the HF5 for the microphonics so I'm going to keep this in mind. When choosing IEM's I had actually used Jokers chart as well :) but not for the microphonics.

    Anybody else with any input on which of the two IEM's are preferred in regards to my musical tastes or anything else?


    --The Fifth

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