DIY Earbuds
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subwoof3r

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I found those 32 ohm drivers turning to be my current yet best drivers ever. With the right tuning, everything is there. Deep soundstage, very good bass impact with good subbass, clean and neutral (almost full) mids with a very very slight push in the high-mids, and excellent treble with a lot of details. Very transparent and slightly dark, V-shaped signature sound. This is the exact sound signature I enjoy for now.
I finally found my build to be a better overall enjoyment than my much loved previous Smabat ST-10 earbuds.
Incredible stuff. Once things will be settled (coronavirus), I will order one or two more pairs (instead initially the 64 ohm drivers that unfortunately doesn't have much treble and details presence, but that I really enjoy alternatively).
 
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robar

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I found those 32 ohm drivers turning to be my current yet best drivers ever. With the right tuning, everything is there. Deep soundstage, very good bass impact with good subbass, clean and neutral (almost full) mids with a very very slight push in the high-mids, and excellent treble with a lot of details. Very transparent and slightly dark, V-shaped signature sound. This is the exact sound signature I enjoy for now.
I finally found my build to be a better overall enjoyment than my much loved previous Smabat ST-10 earbuds.
Incredible stuff. Once things will be settled (coronavirus), I will order one or two more pairs (instead initially the 64 ohm drivers that unfortunately doesn't have much treble and details presence, but that I really enjoy alternatively).
Awesome, I plan to buy 1-2 additional 19-21 bass as well, along with pk2 speakers. I really enjoy it in the qian69 shell but would like to experiment with tuning more. Really cheap as well so no reason to not buy more haha. Did you tune it similarly to the titanium?
 
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furyossa

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I found those 32 ohm drivers turning to be my current yet best drivers ever. With the right tuning, everything is there. Deep soundstage, very good bass impact with good subbass, clean and neutral (almost full) mids with a very very slight push in the high-mids, and excellent treble with a lot of details. Very transparent and slightly dark, V-shaped signature sound. This is the exact sound signature I enjoy for now.
I finally found my build to be a better overall enjoyment than my much loved previous Smabat ST-10 earbuds.
Incredible stuff. Once things will be settled (coronavirus), I will order one or two more pairs (instead initially the 64 ohm drivers that unfortunately doesn't have much treble and details presence, but that I really enjoy alternatively).
Then you probably like PK2
 
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headenvelopedinsound

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I got many drivers, shells and other parts from NSC and I didn't have any problems.
I forgot to mention one more thing. After 3-4 revisions of the shell, 400ohm graphene sounds best on "semi-large" cavity size shells like FENGRU Diy PT32
and a new one that I use for these drivers. If you have a fit issue with 15.4mm driver better skip FENGRU Diy PT32. When you put foam over the plastic cover
you get the wider size.

I plan to talk about the pros and cons of this "angled" shell which I use for Titanium 64ohm and Beryllium 130ohm.
The biggest disadvantage is that glue must be used for both the driver and the MMCX connector.
I went on and looked and the new version of the shells were on sale so I snapped them up for $14.26. Got the silver ones to go with my bronze/gold 600ohm shells. I have no issues with size. I do well with all shell sizes but always have either full foam or donut foams on depending on sound signature(ST-10 full foam M1 Pro Donuts). I've got all 3 shell types you've got above and like the middle green best but all are great. Is that the one you are referring to as semi-large?

www.aliexpress.com/item/4000269094624.html
 
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I went on and looked and the new version of the shells were on sale so I snapped them up for $14.26. Got the silver ones to go with my bronze/gold 600ohm shells. I have no issues with size. I do well with all shell sizes but always have either full foam or donut foams on depending on sound signature(ST-10 full foam M1 Pro Donuts). I've got all 3 shell types you've got above and like the middle green best but all are great. Is that the one you are referring to as semi-large?

https://www.aliexpress.com/item/4000269094624.html?spm=a2g0s.9042311.0.0.45624c4dHJZpyD
Yup. That's the one. I plan to order black and silver to complete the entire collection :beerchug:
 
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Yup. That's the one. I plan to order black and silver to complete the entire collection :beerchug:
Grab them while they are still on sale! Got to collect them all haha :)
 
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I just finished my hybrid shell model. For this, I used a 300ohm driver N52 magnet, Tingo T200 cable (just temporarily) and aluminum shell (front part only).
300ohm driver requires swapping of this tick filter because it already has slightly recessed mids. Treble is laid-back. Bass is really energetic, N52 magnet does a good job here.
Without the filter, mids come in front, a little too much for my taste. A thin filter with a pair of punched holes provides solid sound.
I like these aluminum shells because are ultra-light and the driver fits perfectly. The only problem is that they are too shallow (very small cavity size).
The back of the shell is a hand-made wooden piece. By adding this wooden part I got medium cavity size which adds a bit "large room" effect
 
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Then you probably like PK2
Absolutely not.
I owned original Yuin PK1, PK2, PK3, and some DIY PK2 and PK1 drivers, and many shells modding, none of them can reach the sound level of my current best build with these 15.4mm 32 ohm drivers. They are compketely different sound type, more for pop, with music that don't requires much bass, too much forwarded mids, and generally piercing treble. That is why I abandonned playing with 14.8mm drivers.
 
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furyossa

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Absolutely not.
I owned original Yuin PK1, PK2, PK3, and some DIY PK2 and PK1 drivers, and many shells modding, none of them can reach the sound level of my current best build with these 15.4mm 32 ohm drivers. They are compketely different sound type, more for pop, with music that don't requires much bass, too much forwarded mids, and generally piercing treble. That is why I abandonned playing with 14.8mm drivers.
You own all the 14.8mm drivers, now I understand why you ended up modding them. I'm chasing a more balanced sound with good soundstage and imaging. High impedance
drivers in many cases reach that level but there aren't many choices right now. New DIY models are coming up slow compared to branded models. On 11.11 I bought BGVP DX5,
Faael Datura Pro and Senfer KP120. Material, design, and build are top-level but as far as sound goes I was totally disappointed especially with the DX5. BLON BL-03 and DX5
share similar DLC driver and when I compare them I start to cry :sob: Imagine driving a Bugatti and then going over to drive Citroën 2CV. Same filling :grin:
 
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You own all the 14.8mm drivers, now I understand why you ended up modding them. I'm chasing a more balanced sound with good soundstage and imaging. High impedance
drivers in many cases reach that level but there aren't many choices right now. New DIY models are coming up slow compared to branded models. On 11.11 I bought BGVP DX5,
Faael Datura Pro and Senfer KP120. Material, design, and build are top-level but as far as sound goes I was totally disappointed especially with the DX5. BLON BL-03 and DX5
share similar DLC driver and when I compare them I start to cry :sob: Imagine driving a Bugatti and then going over to drive Citroën 2CV. Same filling :grin:
You for sure need to look into Smabat then. M1 Pro is like my 5” studio monitors. ST-10 is like adding in my sub and hitting the +2 tweeter room compensation. Not much difference but totally why I use donuts on my M1 Pro and full foam on ST-10. At that point they are really similar but St-10 just has that amazing bass extension. Very balanced and honest sound on both. St-10 is higher resolution overall but M1 pro is not far off.

I wonder if we will ever see a driver like the 50mm k100 500ohm. I want to make an open back headphone with that driver but at $150ish I could build a lot of really solid buds. So I am fine with my modded planar and beryllium sets for now.
 
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You own all the 14.8mm drivers, now I understand why you ended up modding them. I'm chasing a more balanced sound with good soundstage and imaging. High impedance
drivers in many cases reach that level but there aren't many choices right now. New DIY models are coming up slow compared to branded models. On 11.11 I bought BGVP DX5,
Faael Datura Pro and Senfer KP120. Material, design, and build are top-level but as far as sound goes I was totally disappointed especially with the DX5. BLON BL-03 and DX5
share similar DLC driver and when I compare them I start to cry :sob: Imagine driving a Bugatti and then going over to drive Citroën 2CV. Same filling :grin:
If you have a bit of spare money (costs less than 4usd) I really recommend trying those 32ohm out. It produces the closest sound to full size headphones and loudspeakers from my little collection. For me balanced sound include full bodied bass so the instruments have weight and impact not only HF detail. I don't have the very high impedance drivers but I'm pretty sure the price performance ratio is way higher with these 32ohm, and it plays well with any source, doesn't need amp. (I guess a high output impedance amp would only damage the sound of these)
(by the way there is a "balanced" and a "clear" version of this speaker as well, I guess the balanced has less bass and the clear has emphasized upper mids, but this is just a guess. I'll personally stay with the bass version but for other tastes those might be more suitable)

By the way I almost bought the datura pro on lucky bag sale but finally I skipped it because I was afraid that it would sound too midcentric for me, I don't want yet another B40 type sound. How do you like it, how does it compare to diy speakers we use here?

@headenvelopedinsound You build diy headphones as well? Can you recommend resources/tutorials on how to do it, what to buy etc? I'd be interested in modding my takstar pro 80 and oneodio studio pro, then later building something from the ground up. (would really like to build nice sounding portable headphones)
 
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You for sure need to look into Smabat then. M1 Pro is like my 5” studio monitors. ST-10 is like adding in my sub and hitting the +2 tweeter room compensation. Not much difference but totally why I use donuts on my M1 Pro and full foam on ST-10. At that point they are really similar but St-10 just has that amazing bass extension. Very balanced and honest sound on both. St-10 is higher resolution overall but M1 pro is not far off.

I wonder if we will ever see a driver like the 50mm k100 500ohm. I want to make an open back headphone with that driver but at $150ish I could build a lot of really solid buds. So I am fine with my modded planar and beryllium sets for now.
I was thinking of buying an ST-10 , but I know that it's a little big for me and I will have a fit problem.
I hope for some DIY DLC driver. It is very fascinating how BLON managed to achieve "such a sound" with just one driver.
I "hate" Blon because all good earphones sound bad after listening to them :upside_down:
@HungryPanda confirmed that Senfer KP110 sounds good with DLC driver.
DQSM Turandot is a really beautiful model and probably the best DLC implementation in earbuds for now but it's pricey.
 
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If you have a bit of spare money (costs less than 4usd) I really recommend trying those 32ohm out. It produces the closest sound to full size headphones and loudspeakers from my little collection. For me balanced sound include full bodied bass so the instruments have weight and impact not only HF detail. I don't have the very high impedance drivers but I'm pretty sure the price performance ratio is way higher with these 32ohm, and it plays well with any source, doesn't need amp.

By the way I almost bought the datura pro on lucky bag sale but finally I skipped it because I was afraid that it would sound too midcentric for me, I don't want yet another B40 type sound. How do you like it, how does it compare to diy speakers we use here?

@headenvelopedinsound You build diy headphones as well? Can you recommend resources/tutorials on how to do it, what to buy etc? I'd be interested in modding my takstar pro 80 and oneodio studio pro, then later building something from the ground up. (would really like to build nice sounding portable headphones)
I’ve never build any headphone from the ground up no but modded quite a bit. Every set is going to be different and depends on what you want to change in the frequency response. Hobby Lobby is a great place to go get supplies. Regular felt, adhesive felt, cotton balls, varying density masking tape and foam. All great to have around. Headphone pads make a very large impact on sound as well.
As far as materials most all the sellers on Ali have headphone drivers and headphone shells of varying types. I’ve kind of been milling over if it’s more cost effective to buy something like the BLON B7 and just ripe out the driver and plunk a new one in and fine tune it from there. All fun stuff.

@furyossa
Yeah the BLON BL03 is a nice set indeed. I own both the silver and gun metal. Every time I put them in I turn in Tycho - Weather and get lost for the duration. Wondering how the BL05 will compare. I can’t bring myself to pay $200+ on an earbud but will for a headphone or iem. But it’s becoming unnecessary to do for IEMs as well with companies like BLON and TinHifi doing amazing things with single drivers. For headroom and sound signature my favorites are still my fearless S6pro. It’s about as studio neutral DF neutral as one can get right now. I will spend $1000+ on a guitar but I can’t do it on headphone type stuff. So I don’t know what I am missing with things like 64 audio etc. I was not that impressed with my Alclair set and customs are a pain in the rear to get fitted for properly. Rabbit trail sorry.
 
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I’ve never build any headphone from the ground up no but modded quite a bit. Every set is going to be different and depends on what you want to change in the frequency response. Hobby Lobby is a great place to go get supplies. Regular felt, adhesive felt, cotton balls, varying density masking tape and foam. All great to have around. Headphone pads make a very large impact on sound as well.
As far as materials most all the sellers on Ali have headphone drivers and headphone shells of varying types. I’ve kind of been milling over if it’s more cost effective to buy something like the BLON B7 and just ripe out the driver and plunk a new one in and fine tune it from there. All fun stuff.
Thanks a lot :) Yes I want to mod headphones first mainly because the shell from aliexpress are quite expensive I'm not really sure if they are that good or necessary. I don't use my headphones due to the fact that I have problems with seal with takstars (will search for better pads) and also I just like the sound of my earbuds better haha. (especially the 32ohm 19-21 in qian69 shell puts them to shame) First even just tuning the existing hardware would be beneficial (both of them sound quite unnatural to me, oneodio is just tuned badly to my ears, takstar is bright and thin maybe the not so good seal is also a factor) and then I see that stores like nsc, ghxamp sell high quality headphone speakers as well so why not do the same with headphones that I do with earbuds? A really fun project would be to buy some kind of a cheap portable set like sony zx series and mod the hell out of them, upgrade speakers etc. Would be a nice complementary project to earbuds. (I hate wearing in ear buds so those are a no go for me)

@furyossa
Have you tried modding PK type shells? I have a pair of B40's with damaged tuning foams and I wasn't fan of the overly mid dominant tuning anyway so I would like to do something similar to my z-sound mod - drilling new vents and putting regular horseshoe tuning on them, while closing down the long hole on the top.
 
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If you have a bit of spare money (costs less than 4usd) I really recommend trying those 32ohm out. It produces the closest sound to full size headphones and loudspeakers from my little collection. For me balanced sound include full bodied bass so the instruments have weight and impact not only HF detail. I don't have the very high impedance drivers but I'm pretty sure the price performance ratio is way higher with these 32ohm, and it plays well with any source, doesn't need amp. (I guess a high output impedance amp would only damage the sound of these)
(by the way there is a "balanced" and a "clear" version of this speaker as well, I guess the balanced has less bass and the clear has emphasized upper mids, but this is just a guess. I'll personally stay with the bass version but for other tastes those might be more suitable)

Have you tried modding PK type shells? I have a pair of B40's with damaged tuning foams and I wasn't fan of the overly mid dominant tuning anyway so I would like to do something similar to my z-sound mod - drilling new vents and putting regular horseshoe tuning on them, while closing down the long hole on the top.

By the way I almost bought the datura pro on lucky bag sale but finally I skipped it because I was afraid that it would sound too midcentric for me, I don't want yet another B40 type sound. How do you like it, how does it compare to diy speakers we use here?

@headenvelopedinsound You build diy headphones as well? Can you recommend resources/tutorials on how to do it, what to buy etc? I'd be interested in modding my takstar pro 80 and oneodio studio pro, then later building something from the ground up. (would really like to build nice sounding portable headphones)
I will buy one of these Titanium 32ohm for sure. For me, balanced means specific sound signature where lows, mids and highs are clear and strong enough
but the most important thing is that at different volumes stay consistent without unusual peaks. This is one of the advantages of high impedance drivers,
clear sound on low and high volume levels.
I noticed that on the LG G7 when using the earbuds with low impedance, QuadDac uses automatically low gain and it sounds like it's off,
so I need to crank up the volume around 80%. With high impedance drivers, QuadDac automatically turn on high gain, and I use the volume in between 40-75%.
Because of that, I bought an Impedance plug for low impedance earbuds to cheat my phone and works fine for now. :wink:
 
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