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Empire Ears - Discussion & Impressions (Formerly EarWerkz)

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  1. moedawg140 Contributor
    Jack Vang, I'm a fan. Just yesterday morning while I wrote a review update (part of which explains about and suggests solutions to background noise/hissing), I listened to Lil Wayne and T-Pain's album "T-Wayne".

    Great job with the 24-driver CIEM as well! Another CIEM company can simply Photoshop a photo for April Fools Day and call theirs a "30 driver", while you actually made and implemented yours true to fashion. Bravo, sir!
     
    Jack Vang likes this.
  2. Kerouac
    Damn...now I wish I hadn't sold all my iems + all my kids toys over the past few days to scrape money together for that Legend XXIV [​IMG]
     
  3. Jack Vang
     
    I'm not how to respond to this. I have a pink Nintendo DS and some Supras laying around.....
     
    Empire Ears Stay updated on Empire Ears at their sponsor page on Head-Fi.
     
    https://www.facebook.com/EmpireEars https://twitter.com/EmpireEars https://www.instagram.com/empireears/ http://www.empireears.com/
  4. Kerouac

     Well, I guess that would stop the crying at least for a couple of hours (meaning myself, not the kids) [​IMG] 
    [​IMG]
     
  5. Watagump
     
    Let me show you how to respond in kind.
     
    lollipopHelloSucker.jpg
     
  6. Jack Vang
     
    LOL terrible!!!! Are you going to Axpona bro?
     
    Empire Ears Stay updated on Empire Ears at their sponsor page on Head-Fi.
     
    https://www.facebook.com/EmpireEars https://twitter.com/EmpireEars https://www.instagram.com/empireears/ http://www.empireears.com/
  7. Spamateur
    This thread has me literally LOL'ing at work today. Thanks for the laughs, guys. [​IMG]
     
  8. Kerouac
    Well, I didn't find it to be that funny at all...
    [​IMG]
    Now gimme back my lolly pop!
     
  9. Watagump
     
    Not that I know of. [​IMG]
     
  10. ejong7
    You my friend are plain and simple: SAVAGE
     
    moedawg140 likes this.
  11. Watagump
     
    57979039.jpg
     
    Kerouac likes this.
  12. Army-Firedawg
    For those who're interested. Here's my initial impressions and thoughts on the Empire Ears line up. NOT to be confused with a review, this is simply my thoughts on them during my short time with them.
     
      
     I feel incredibly honored to have been trusted with not just being allowed to loan a few of Empire Ears legendary line up but the ENTIRE line up. Jack and his Empire Ears family allowed me to loan the entire lineup for Carolina CanFest 5 and then allowed me some extra time to be able to listen and give my thoughts on the offerings. Mere words cannot express my gratitude for this opportunity, I’m by NO means a drinker (in fact I never have) so I can’t say I’ll treat you to a drink but I’d love to treat you to lunch sometime Jack my friend.
        However, pleasantries aside I was asked to provide my honest opinion and thought on the lineup and I plan to do no less. So without further adieu allow me to share my thoughts on the Empire Ears collection.
     
    *Disclaimer: I cannot stress this enough, the following paragraphs and summaries are NOT to be considered a full or even close to detailed review of any products being described (with exception of the Hermes VI). I did not have these products long enough to feel comfortable in even remotely reviewing them or doing anything further than writing my initial and with respect to time allotted, overall impressions of the product.*
     
    I'm a 25 year old firefighter currently for the U.S. Army North Carolina National Guard. I was formerly a civilian firefighter in Kentucky with the Millard Fire Department before I enlisted and moved to my current location in Charlotte, North Carolina. My current goal is to begin my career again in the civilian fire service, and yes, I am the cliché of wanting to do that since as far as I can remember.
        My interests/hobbies are powerlifting, fishing and relaxing to audio products and reviewing them to help other decide on what products would work for them. On that note over the years I've really came to an understanding of what it is I like and look for in audio products.
        What I look for is a relaxing, warm and sensual sound that just drifts me away in the emotional experience of the music being performed. Yes, accuracy is still important but I will happily sacrifice that if I'm presented with a clean, warm sound that can wisp me away into an experience that makes me yearn for more.
        My ideal signature are that of respectably forward mids and upper bass range with the bass being controlled but with some slight decay. I like my treble to have great extension and detail reveal but I don't like artificial treble in order to achieve that. Examples of products that have given me chills and keep giving me the yearning for more feels are the Bowers & Wilkins P7, Oppo PM-1/2, Empire Ears Hermes VI, Audeze LCD-XC, Meze Headphones 99 Classics & Stax SR009.

     
    Supra II
     
      
     Ah the legendary Supra II. The massively successful kickstarter campaign way back when Empire Ears was still Earwerkz. I honestly feel it rather appropriate that they (Empire Ears) decided to carry this model over for it truly performs better than most any other iem in its respective category.
        I often found myself coming back to the supra when I just wanted to listen to something for fun. It has a notable V shaped sound signature but it reproduces detail incredibly well. The treble is brilliant and bright and the bass hits when it supposed to and has some pretty good authority. The mids are where I can’t give these much love. The are still good do not get me wrong, but from a personal standpoint (and please read my about me to get an idea where I’m coming from) it didn’t have that warm sound I seek; in fact I would actually call these somewhat bright..
        When listening to one of my go to, all time favorite relax tracks “Rite of Passage” by Joe Leader. The Supra II made the stunning warm and soft sounding saxophone sound much brighter than I know it’s supposed to. To make up for the brightness the Supra II has impeccable depth and airy sound that holds its own to not just other similar priced iems but most regardless of price.
     
    Cerberus III
     
      
     The Cerberus, a mighty beast with 3 equally vicious heads. So it only befitting that this model too, be known as the Cerberus and quite honestly, has became one of my go to choices. The separation is astounding in respect to their price, the bass punch is authoritative but remains in complete control without becoming overpowering this ability rivaling that of even my own Hermes VI. Actually on that note, I found the overall signature very similar to that of the Hermes VI. The main differences I found between the two is the Cerberus isn’t as smooth in its transition and the bass is a bit more pronounced. The mids were warm with nice body and the treble was nice and sparkly (but that bass though).
        So for those who really believe they’ll love the sound of the Hermes VI but just can’t quite afford the $1,099 starting price. Then you should feel absolutely at home with the Cerberus III. These are a powerhouse iem that performs extremely competently and regardless of its standing in the product line has become one I’ve greatly enjoyed.
     
    Spartan IV
     
        This is the model I thought would be extremely punchy and in your face, how mistaken I was. Like the historic Spartan race, the Spartan IV is beautifully controlled and shockingly accurate in its musical reproduction. I heard VERY little bias in the Spartan IV (in fact I never could figure out which direction of off center it was). The level of control in the bass, accuracy in the imaging and overall transparency still baffles me for these to only be $749. What was most impressive is how well the bass responded when it was supposed to. These are extremely military like in the level of control they maintain over themselves and only perform what they’re supposed to.
        Like the Cerberus III very closely resembles the Hermes VI, the Spartan IV mimiks the Athena VII very closely (and honestly I think better thanks to the consistent bass experience) so fot those who really enjoyed the Athena or are looking for a studio style iem that’s highly accurate and reference quality but can’t afford the price tag of the Athena, seriously look into the Spartan IV, you won’t be disappointed; in fact they’re one of the best price/quality  iems (in this price tier)I’ve heard to date.
     
    Hermes VI
     
    My full, detailed review. These were my reference when comparing the other models. As I’ve stressed many times other than the Hermes VI no other product is or should be remotely considered a full review. I did not have these long enough to provide that in depth of detail but the paragraphs given are my opinions of how I found the overall sound of each model. Seeing I’ve most experience with the Hermes model it was the best comparison I could make.

    Athena VII
     
      
     The ever elegant Athena, the goddess of wisdom and justice. Very representative of how this iem behaves. When I’m listening to a concert (an example is Joe Leader [the saxophonist]) these really do an incredibly impressive job of placing you in the premium seats just a few rows back from the stage. The sense of imagine and instrument placement is extraordinary and the depth is bone chilling.
        In the Empire Ears thread I seen a few consider these the reference iem of choice and I can most certainly see where they’re coming from for in most aspects they truly are pinpoint accurate. The treble is so subtle in its transition and bestows great extension, the mids are accurate and possess wonderful tonality that present realism but do have a slight brightness to it (and I do mean very slight [I barely caught it on my last day of my term]). My only complain with Athena VII is the bass response.
        The bass hit is quite recessed I’ve came to find out and it’s a bit distracting when directly comparing with the other frequencies. Now don’t take this as me saying the bass is bad for it’s not but it just doesn’t possess the presence and authority the rest of the band demands. An example is when I’m listening to two of my favorite workout songs, “The Pride” and “Jekyll and Hyde” from FFDP. These songs really get me pumped to start my workout but with the Athena it seems to me she’s trying too hard to demand accuracy and it deters away from how the song really plays. Again this isn’t in a bad way, it’s just…..off.
     
    Apollo X
     
      
     The model the teases a coup d’etat with the almighty Zeus. The sound signature is very close and even at times is difficult to tell the difference, however, when listening to a large performance of one that has a many of moving pieces (i.e. O Fortuna by Carl Orff) with an explicitly large soundstage the Apollo struggles.
        The best way I can describe this is the X axis on an equalizer. This feature goes by many names but it essentially artificially increases one's perception of the soundstage of the music they’re listening to. In doing this the music sounds, kind weird. The music sounds stretched and unrealistic. This isn’t necessarily describing the Apollo but in my limited time is the closest I can come to describing what I’m experiencing.
        Now, when you’re listening to a “regular” song with “normal” levels of depth and space the Apollo X’s detail retrieval and imaging is omgsh breathtaking. There is a V shape to the sound as well that at times does turns me off (especially when listening to artists such as Trace Adkins) but for those who enjoy a concert type sound, will find the Apollo X right at home in their ears. For me however I didn’t care too much overall.
     
    Zeus XIV
     
      
     Alas, here we are; the all mighty and commanding Zeus. Ruler of the Greek gods and summoner of lightning; so how well does this embodiment represent the humble $2,099 iem? Well, absurdly true is a short and simple to that question. I have never experienced anything like the Zeus in my granted short years in this love of mine. The level of detail, depth, space, transparency, imaging, and sonic accuracy is absurd LET ALONE FOR AN IEM!!!!!
        I’m not alone in this level of speechlessness either. When I brought this behemoth to the Carolina CanFest a many of people to experienced its thunder was awestruck by the level of quality inside this simple earphone. I sincerely wish I had more time to do a full review (mainly just wanting more time to experience this incredible sound) to really break into what the Zeus can do but unfortunately I cannot give anything remotely negative to say about the almighty Empire Ears flagship Zeus. Well actually I can, it’s very expensive; but dear God is it worth it for those fortunate enough to be able to afford them.
     
    Fare thee well
     
        Welp, that’s the end of my thought with the Empire Ears line up. I tried to keep it short and sweet by design to do my best to NOT CONFUSE this with a full review but to show it’s my short THOUGHTS on the collection. As I’m sure you’ve figured out, I liked pretty much every model and have really enjoyed what each model brings to the table. For even those showing close similarities they still possess their own individual character so when looking into making a purchase be truthful to yourself in what you like in audio. Just because a product is more expensive in the lineup and you can afford it, doesn’t necessarily mean it’s the best choice for you.
        Hit Jack and his team up, what they do with the level of customer service go so far above and beyond companies should in all honesty & no sarcasm; put them in their employee guidelines on how to go about business.
     
    Also check out my model comparison video, and if this guide helped you hit that thumbs up button for me I’d greatly appreciate it. Till next time my friends.
     
     
    If you've any questions as well or would like more information on a certain model from my take please hit me up I'll happily answer any questions to the best of my ability. 
     
    Also forgot to mention this. The main tips I chose to use is @Comply I've been using them for years and truly swear by them.  However, personal bias aside Empire Ears' spin tips are some of the most comfortable silicon tips I've ever used and didn't have any issues with comfort from them (which for me has ALWAYS been rare w/ silicon tips).
     
    proedros likes this.
  13. Watagump
     
     
    No reason to call us whores. [​IMG]
     
  14. Army-Firedawg
     
    Why, I'd never do such a thing [​IMG]
     
  15. Watagump
     
    3rd word first sentence, who're, lol. [​IMG]
     
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