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CustomArt FIBAE Impressions Thread

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  1. msiekkb
    I agree with compare F3 and F2.

    And I agree with the 8.2 is different from to F3. FIBAE3 isn't baby Harmony 8.2, because bass, mids, and treble are very different than bass, mids and treble on H8.2. But with Cayin N5 II on cable FAW Claire Hybrid balanced F3 sound similar to flagship CIEM, because Cayin N5 II is very warmth, he have peak on higher bass and lower mids, attack and decay is very slow, treble not crispy, not clarity. Cable FAW Claire Hybrid have warm tone and slow attack and decay.
    Deezel177 likes this.
  2. audioNinja
    Hmm new to the CIEM scene here. Just ordered my very CIEM, FIBAE 3!
    Might be a bit out of line here, but does anyone know what the FIBAE 3 is like compared to say the AKG K3003?
    Super impressed by the finishing! :astonished:
    ostewart likes this.
  3. ostewart
    Do you have any IEM's that accept 2-pin cables?

    If you are happy to pay postage, I'd lend you my Ares II for you to form your own opinion. Unfortunately I use the Eros II more so am unable to lend that too. Or try and get down to Canjam London to try them all :)
    kubig123 and jeffhawke like this.
  4. piotrus-g
    Paradoxically I think it's the exact opposite. Changes to FIBAE1 with ARES II+ were substantial, almost as if I added another driver to the IEM... But only with ARESII+ really, other cables have had marginal or smaller impact in my opinion. Changes to FIBAE2 were smaller and I couldn't really tell a difference between Mars and ARES II cables, EROS and Leonidas did change the sound a bit though, but not by a huge margin. With Harmony 8.2 I have trouble hearing difference between stock and Ares.

    Oh and BTW this comes from a person who didn't use to "hear" changes in cables. I'm still far from claiming that cable X makes mids smoother, while the other changes texture in highs. I only pay attention to overall impact on the sound i.e. if it changes at all.
    Last edited: Feb 5, 2018
  5. omastic
    Hello Piotr, do you have any thoughts as to what actually creates this significant difference in sound when the ARESII+ is used? This is a genuine question out of curiosity, as since my understanding is that cables primarily create a difference through having different impedance values compared to others. This shouldn't apply to any FIBAE iem as the whole point of the technology is to resist changes in sound signature through impedance. So what other technical factor could be in play here?

    Again, this is a genuine question that's not to be misunderstood as taking a stance against the cable believer camp. Just wondering if you have any insights from a technical point of view.

    jeffhawke likes this.
  6. piotrus-g
    In my opinion the cross-section of the cable. ARES II+ is the thicker gauge version of ARES II.

    Capacitance, conductivity, probably all together with different factors combined. Truthfully I don't know why cable can have grater effect on sound than changing sound source with FIBAE IEMs, haven't really researched it.
    ostewart and jeffhawke like this.
  7. bartzky
    Alright guys: Let's talk about cables :ksc75smile:

    First of all Fibae IEMs take a special position as their impedance responses are basically flat. Many times existing sound differences of cables can be attributed to a different cable resistance in combination with the IEM's impedance response. Let's take a look at one of the most prominent examples: The Campfire Audio Andromeda. The diagram below show's it's impedance response.

    Campfire Audio Andromeda web.jpg

    It can easily be seen that the impedance varies wildly across the frequencies. The Andromeda's stock cable has a resistance of 1 Ohm in total. If you now add resistance by changing to a different cable or using a source, the frequency response will change according to the IEM's impedance response. Take a look at the following graph:

    Campfire Audio Andromeda web.jpg

    The curves represent the deviation in frequency response relative to the stock frequency response measured with the stock cable and a ~0 Ohm source. So the straight yellow line is stock and therefore flat. From there on it goes 2, 4, 8, 16, 32 and 64 Ohm from top to bottom. The higher the added impedance gets, the more the frequency response changes. By comparing this graph to the above impedance response there easily can be seen that the changes in frequency response perfectly follow the shape of the impedance response.
    So as the impedance response of Fibae is basically flat, there won't be any changes to the frequency response by adding or reducing the resistance of the cable or output impedance.

    Though people in this thread claim to hear differences between cables with their Fibaes. Probably they're all deaf and blessed with a great amount of imagination, one might say. That may be, but let's dig a bit deeper.

    I gonna concentrate on the Fibae 1 as it's most prone to the following effects due to it's lowest impedance of the Fibae lineup. CA's specs for the F1 tell us it's impedance is 5.6 Ohm @1kHz, which is extremely low. The stock cable is from PlasticsOne and has got a resistance of 3.2 Ohm in total. So the F1's impedance minus it's cable is just 2.4 Ohm. That low number leads to some unusual effects.
    Let's say you change the cable to one that's resistance is 1 Ohm total, which is not an unusual number. As the voltage drop across the cable decreases, you will instantly gain about 5 dB of volume without touching your volume control at all. Usually more volume equals better sound, so the other cable is most likely considered to be better sounding.

    Another effect occurs due to how the stock cable is constructed. PlasticsOne uses three independent wires, so both channels share the ground wire. I won't go to much into detail, but there's a voltage drop across the ground wire, that does actually drive the respective opposite earpiece. This effect is called crosstalk. Usually the amount of cable introduced crosstalk is very low as the IEM's or headphone's impedance is high in comparison to the resistance of the shared wire. In this case, however, things are different. Calculations with 2.4 Ohm for the F1 w/o cable and 1.6 Ohm for the shared wire resistance lead to the following result: The PlasticsOne cable actually introduces a crosstalk of about -11 dB to the F1.

    Crosstalk is often equated with unintended crossfeed, but actually those two are quite different. Crossfeed adds a bit of the signal into the opposite channel, while crosstalk is usually 180° out of phase and therefore subtracts a bit of the signal from the opposite channel. As a result the stereo center loses some volume, as everything on the sides get's louder. If you like to experience what crosstalk sounds like you may test a DSP setting I made for the EQ Apo:
    You can download the .zip from this link. Inside the zip you will find two wav and two txt. Ignore the wav but make sure they stay in the same folder as the txt.

    The first txt is "Mute L" and will just mute the left channel if you include the txt in EQ APO. If you know listen to only the left earpiece while the right earpiece is playing music, you will only hear the crosstalk of your setup.

    The second txt is called "crosstalk". If you load this txt into EQ APO it will instantly add -20 dB of crosstalk to your audio. You may open the txt file and see this text:
    "Crosstalk in dB hier einstellen" just means "Set crosstalk in dB here". So you can go ahead and change the number to -11 dB or everything else you like to try.

    If you chance to cable with 4 wires and therefore no shared ground wire, the cable introduced crosstalk will be (mostly) gone. Same is true for balanced connections. Btw. cables with 4 wires are very common, so you most likely will have got one if you bought an aftermarket cable.
    headdict, bilou, jeffhawke and 2 others like this.
  8. piotrus-g
    Small correction to the numbers. F1 connected straight into the jack plug, with 1,7cm cabling is 2,98Ohm and Plastics1 cable measured 2,7 Ohm across whole FR

    Also if you use 4wire but 3-pole jack plug I think there should be no improvements in crosstalk, no?
    Last edited: Feb 5, 2018
  9. istfleur
    Could you show any data please, not just personal anecdotes.
  10. MXRaia
    Anyone else hyped about the upcoming FIBAE model? Any guesses as to what it'll be like?
    subguy812 likes this.
  11. kubig123
    but I don't have graphs or measurements that can backup my impressions, but if you read through this thread there has been mentioned buy several head-fier that cables alter quite significant the sound signature, not everyone agrees which cable is the best with the Fibae but they agree that there are some changes in the sound signature.

    I cannot write it better than @piotrus-g post:

    I have the Encore and the SE5U and changing cables on these 2 iems there is a small change in the sound but not as dramatic as on the Fibae.
    ostewart and subguy812 like this.
  12. Deezel177
    Piotr implied it was going to be a rather bass-heavy model, and I’m always excited for any Custom Art release. :wink:
  13. subguy812
    I think maybe bassy with FIBAE clarity
  14. kubig123
    If I remember right an announcement should come out soon :ksc75smile::ksc75smile::ksc75smile:
  15. bartzky
    That gives roughly -12,5 dB of crosstalk and would mean 3 dB volume gain by changing to a 1 Ohm cable.

    Actually that does improve crosstalk. The important factor is the shared resistance between both channels. With 4 wires and a 3-pole plug the shared resistance is the plug's, which usually is <0.1 Ohm. But with only 3 wires, shared resistance consists of jack and the wire till the Y-splitter, which is close to half the cable's total resistance.
    You can easily confirm (or disprove) my calculations. Just take a F1 with stock cable, drive one side only and measure the undriven channel in your IEC rig. It should give you a level about 11 to 12,5 dB below the driven channel. If you do the same with a 4 wire cable the measured level will be much lower if there's any. The additional volume that can be archived by a cable with lower resistance could easily be measured as well.
    HuoYuanJia likes this.
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