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Empire Ears - Discussion & Impressions (Formerly EarWerkz)

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  1. Kerouac
    Well to put it in just one sentence: some IEMs (like the Zeus XR) can let you hear everything, where others (like the Phantom) can make you hear/feel everything :ksc75smile:
    But that's just my humble opinion of course...and I still love the Zeus XR (which has superb synergy with the AK380Cu) as well => no plans of selling that one.

    Although I had the Hugo (first edition) in the past, I sold it before I picked up the Zeus. Never heard the Hugo 2 myself, but I bet there should be some members around in this thread that have heard Zeus out of H2 :thinking:
    I would be surprised if it shoudn't sound fantastic though.
    Last edited: Apr 6, 2018
    ranfan, ezekiel77, EagleWings and 4 others like this.
  2. Deezel177
    I think I see what you're getting at, but I think it's a case of the Prelude presenting details in a softer and more linear/coherent manner. Micro-details seem more apparent because your brain takes them in more easily. I hear the Phantom as having greater treble extension because of its cleaner, more transparent stage and its blacker background despite its bolder mid-bass compared to the Prelude. The Phantom does have what sounds like a more attenuated middle-treble compared to the Prelude (also a possible cause of its more subtle sense of detail), but the Prelude IMO has the warmer and fuller stage because of its upper-treble roll-off. Now, of course, this is how I personally determine treble extension and it may be different to yours. Nonetheless, I definitely agree when you say that we're in love with both IEMs, and I can't wait to hear more impressions of the Phantom to come in the near future. :D
  3. Kerouac
    We're all good Daniel! And like I wrote: I have a huge respect for your (much better than mine) hearing and writing skills. I also wrote that I can be wrong (and I probably might be, in this specific case :grin:). But I wanted to share my initial thoughts/opinion nonetheless after I had read @hamhamhamsta's question, and before I had read your answer on that. I consider having different opinions also as an interesting and positive thing (it's not a contest after all) and besides that it's nice to be able to discuss something like this with someone like you. No hurt feelings or (even worse) insults. Just a decent (and imo interesting) conversation, just the way it always should be imo:thumbsup:

    Cheers and happy listening my friend!
    ranfan, hamhamhamsta and ctsooner22 like this.
  4. Deezel177
    C'mon Erik, don't get all mushy on me! :p Of course I encourage different opinions and discussion, it's what keeps the spirit of this hobby alive IMO. There's no need for you (or anyone else, for that matter) to explain themselves in such discussions. I love delving into topics like this and they're nowhere near as "offensive" or "hurtful" as people seem to think they are. :D Happily listening to them as we speak, and I am having a jolly good time. :wink:
    Last edited: Apr 6, 2018
  5. Kerouac
    Well, you know...

    But I've just decided to sign up for an 'anger management' class. Hopefully they can teach me over there how to release that anger, that should be somewhere hidden inside of me :grin:
    ranfan, ezekiel77, EagleWings and 3 others like this.
  6. subguy812
    I too hear driver flex with the IE800S although it is minor(very slight) compared to say my IMR R1 which has a great deal of it.
    Last edited: Apr 6, 2018
    Deezel177 likes this.
  7. Wyville
    I think that is a great way of putting it! I have not had much time with the Phantom yet (not as much as I would like), but it is abundantly clear that they let you experience the music. I am really impressed by how the Phantom invite you into the music and the feeling of immersion is the strongest I have had so far. This, I think, is not just because of the tonality, but also the outstanding depth of the stage. Combined with the level of clarity and air, it gives such a natural immersion; holographic and perfectly imaged. But that is essentially my first impression based on only a few hours so far.
    Deezel177 and Kerouac like this.
  8. Layman1
    I'm curious how the soundstage and separation of the Zeus, Phantom and LegendX compare? (And the Bravado, if anyone has input on that too!)
    I have the Noble Katana, which seems decent enough soundstage wise, but I heard the Zeus (forget which exact model) at London CanJam last year and I felt it to be much bigger in that regard?
  9. Deezel177
    Yes, the IE800S’s driver flex is minimal. I guess it can be attributed to the two protruding ports on the back.

    The Katana has a relatively intimate stage because of its thick midrange notes and calmer upper-treble. The Zeus presents larger vocal notes, but its superior treble extension and upper-treble peak gives it a sense of airiness, openness and organisation that’s beyond that of the Katana IMO. The Legend X is slightly wider than the non-ADEL Zeus variants, with as much depth as the Zeus-R IIRC. The Phantom’s stage is dependent on the track usually, but it’s probably somewhere between the Katana and the Zeus on average because of its sense of body and its linear upper-treble. Though, in terms of stage organisation and finesse, it can rival the Zeus when fed the right material.
    Kerouac, ranfan and ctsooner22 like this.
  10. crabdog
    I've not experienced any driver flex whatsoever with the IE800S and I get a super good seal using the large silicone tips. I also get a good seal with the large foams but have a preference for silicone most of the time.
  11. Layman1
    Thanks for this excellent and detailed breakdown! I haven't followed this thread much until now, but do you also have any experience with the Bravado? :)
  12. Deezel177
  13. Mahalarp
    Just received it today pairing with my Effect Audio - Horus :L3000::L3000::L3000:

    Legend X.jpg
  14. Rei87
    Wow. Just sa

    Well, I find that the staging of the Phantom's being large is mainly due to a sub bass that does rumble a little more than it feel it should in a reference iem, and hence giving an impression of a larger staging that it really has.

    But then again, what I did hear was a Phantom demo unit. The universal and custom units do have significant sound differences as outlined in Nic's initial reviews. And considering that Nic provided the sound graphs to Jack and empire designed the Phantom in tandem with him, my impressions may be lacking the insight that comes with owning, and designing, the actual product. Can't believe that I had to dig through so many posts just to find his original post buried under so many other posts.

    Last edited: Apr 6, 2018
  15. ironpeg
    Congrats krub.
    Mahalarp likes this.
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