Etymotic flaw?
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Vertigo-1

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"The Etymotics are musically very revealing, but tonally much too forgiving".

Your thoughts on this Etymotic owners? I thought up of that sentence myself by the way, as a dissatisfaction with my Ety 4Bs as I was listening to them.
 
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BDA_ABAT

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Mmmm... if you are dissatisfied with your purchase, maybe the problem isn't REALLY with Etymotic but your choice of a particular Etymotic headphone...

Here's the info from the HeadRoom website about the ER4B...
Quote:

A version of the ER-4S equalized for binaural recordings; too bright for most other music.


Try the ER4S or P for a better idea of the ER4 sound (when listening to most types of music).

Personally, I find the ER4 to be very revealing, very clear, very detailed, and an altogehter enjoyable headphone. One downside: because of the detail, I've discovered that some of my CDs have been poorly recorded. Never noticed before getting these cans. Also needed to upgrade my source. Was able to hear noise from my PCD that I'd never noticed previously. Of course, YMMV.

Bruce
 
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LTUCCI1924

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Vertigo-1
HI: you mean thats all you found wrong with the etys. I have owned the er-6 and er-4p twice and can write a list of whats wrong with the etys. Lets start off with the price. I am very happy with my koss-35s at 15.00 at citcuit city and I feel that they sound just great with my total airhead. Now ety lovers this is just my opinion and many of you may find the etys to be great and if so I agree with you for you.
 
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Vertigo-1

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Quote:

Originally posted by BDA_ABAT
Mmmm... if you are dissatisfied with your purchase, maybe the problem isn't REALLY with Etymotic but your choice of a particular Etymotic headphone...

Try the ER4S or P for a better idea of the ER4 sound (when listening to most types of music).


Oh don't get me wrong, I'm quite satisfied with my purchase, more so then my purchases in the past of the 4P and 4S. I already have an extremely good idea of how all three ER4s sound by now. I'm just trying to nitpick at what I think is a "flaw" in all three ER4s. Certainly not a deliberate flaw, but rather if it's an area that could be improved in a future product, or through mods, etc. I'm also trying to see if anybody else has the same problems as me, or if I'm the only one. If I'm the only one then it's not the Etys but something within my own system.
 
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acs236

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Could you expand a bit more on exactly what you mean? And if possible, give examples?
 
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JaZZ

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I myself am waiting for a 50-ohms replacement cable for my ER-4S. Though I'm still very happy with them, I want to eliminate the cable microphonics, make some balance experiments and increase the efficiency for portable use... But basically I like the sound very much, it's accurate and clear like no other phones, clean and well-balanced – they're my best headphones, beside or followed by my HD 600. (Btw: both are modified in favor of clarity.)

The only flaw for me is in fact the cable microphonics together with the occlusion effects (which are unavoidable). This applies to my modified ER-4S which are free from the colorations I detect especially with the stock silicon tips. The main modification is the elimination of the bottleneck represented by the narrow canal in the (silicon) tips and the plastic tube inside of the foam plugs. Therefore I use a special noise protection foam to the edge of which the filter tip is justified.

JaZZ
 
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Vertigo-1

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Quote:

Originally posted by acs236
Could you expand a bit more on exactly what you mean? And if possible, give examples?


Well basically what I'm getting at is while the Etys have incredible resolution and allow you to hear deep into the recording, and thus are revealing in that sense, they provide too much of a smoothening effect across the entire sound spectrum, and aren't as revealing in that sense. At least in my system that's how they play out. It just occured to me that the ER4s may be a little too forgiving in the tonal sense. i.e. I pratically don't hear sibilance, instruments that should have a slight edge to them like cymbals or string instruments lack that edge or bite, etc.

I personally blame the ER4s for this forgiving effect. Another Headfier, and I'm quite sure he'll pop in on this thread, said that I should place the blame on my Headmaster instead. I highly doubt it's the Headmaster fault because other headphones I've tried have no problems exhibiting that edge that is completely missing on the Etys. In that sense the Etys are actually glossing over info that should be there. There is info some of my other headphones can exhibit that the Etys can't...and I find that irritating given how much they can reveal in the other sense of revealing. Now maybe the other headphones are just adding things that shouldn't be there, I don't know. I can only judge on what I think sounds "right" to me. I've never been much of a fan of smoothening because of this very reason...it just about always tends to go overboard and start obscuring things that should be heard in the playback, and cymbals tend to be the first thing that suffers followed by string instruments.

In any event I'm just trying to lock on to what could be causing the oversmoothening effect.
 
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JaZZ

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Vertigo...

...I think I know what you mean! And I'm sure you use the silicon tips. Believe me: they're responsible for the gloss that bothers you – like it has bothered me from the beginning. Try some shortened foam plugs!

JaZZ
 
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Yes it is true that they are very revealing, yet also forgiving in the way you describe. IMO they are partially tonally forgiving because they are pretty tonally flat and neutral IMO, and a good thing for me having plenty of recordings that would shriek on other headphones. But perhaps they might not have the same tonal range or dynamics as some other phones. I think it is just a question as to what you consider is the degree of it being forgiving...I find them forgiving, but not much too forgiving. I'd probably have to refine myself to a small and limited collection of absolutely pristine recordings in order to consider them much too forgiving.

I'd probably consider the HD600's even more tonally forgiving to the point of slight coloration. However there are a few other headphones that may have some advantages in seeming to have a slightly greater tonal range and capability, but with flaws laying elsewhere. For example even my AKG240S can reveal a certain grain in some recordings that Ety's won't to nearly the same degree. The AKG's being studio phones and being revealing in a much more clinical manner as opposed to a "musical" one.

But it is true for me at least...that for phones heralded as being so detailed and transparent...they are also probably the most pleasurable for me to listen to for recordings that wouldn't work well for AKG's or Beyers. Wheter you consider that a serious flaw is up to you...but I'll consider it a virtue for now until all recordings themselves are close to perfect. You are absolutely right that the AKG's and Beyers can "bite" whereas the Ety's won't. I like the Ety's where they are as being musically revealing as opposed to mercilessly revealing that I know some headphones are in comparison.

Actually musically revealing, yet still forgiving was pretty much my impression of the R-10 when I heard them. The W2002's leaning the other direction.

And Jazz is probably right about being able to fine-tune the Ety's to the way you prefer and I'd wager he is probably right about the white tips smoothing the sound slightly.
 
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Quote:

Actually musically revealing, yet still forgiving was pretty much my impression of the R-10 when I heard them. The W2002's leaning the other direction.


Just curious, but which direction? Musically forgiving, but still revealing?

 
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I think you're right, Vertigo. There is a SLIGHT smoothing of the sound or tonality(especially bass to upper mids), but amazingly without significant loss of musical information and enjoyment.

The thing is... you have to base this on some sort of reference. The Sennheisers "gloss" over the sound much more to my ears. And most headphones I've heard sound downright muddy in comparison to the Etymotic.

Then again, if you compare a hardcore studio can like the V6 to the Etymotic, you're a little bit on the other side of fense. But In truth, I can overall hear more information about a recording and the music with Etymotic then I can with the V6, even though the musical info may be slightly smoothed on the Etymotic. The overall, perceived 3-D transparency and especially neutrality(the Sonys and Senns having recessed mids and highs in comparison, the Senns having too much upper bass, looseness in the lowest octave, and recessed upper-mids as well, and the Sonys having spiky and grainy upper-mids and relatively boomy bass) of the Etymotic is what makes this possible.

In the end, I don't see this as the major flaw of the Etymotic. Things like the size of the imaging and soundstage and macro- dynamic impact are greater sonic weaknesses imo, something that would likely be impossible to significantly improve in the near future with such a tiny driver.
 
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Huh... What's funny is real cymbals and real brass don't have that 'edginess' or 'bite' (to my ears at least).
 
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BenG

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The thing is, if you electronically record cymbals with mics(especially close mic'd recordings) and then transfer it to CD( which screws up the highs even more) there should be some edge.
 
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BenG

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I just got my 100ohm Fix-up replacement cord today, have not got a chance to try, will try later this evening.

How does it alter the sound in people's opinion? (microphonics aside)
 
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Vert, is there a headphone that does not have this problem that you describe so we can have a frame of reference for what you're talking about?
 
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