Etymotics ER-6...all they're cracked up to be?
May 1, 2002 at 10:11 PM Thread Starter Post #1 of 34

MagicBoy14

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I purchased a Rio Riot recently, and I was looking for some headphones to go with them. I wanted ultra-portable headphones so the Etymotic ER-6 caught my eye immediately. At a reasonable price, and many rave reviews, it looked great.

However, Etymotic is not a very large company in the headphone market, so I'm a bit hesitant to use their product. I was wondering if someone that owns a pair of Etymotic ER-6's could tell me a bit about it's quality and performance. Thanks.
 
May 1, 2002 at 10:22 PM Post #2 of 34

joelongwood

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Quote:

Etymotics ER-6...all they're cracked up to be?


Simply put.....................Yes!
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I've had mine for many months now, and even though the cable looks like it came off a cheap pair of buds, it's surprisingly durable, as are the transducers themselves. I routinely wrap the cable around my iPod for storage. As for sound quality, IF you manage to get a good seal (a bit more difficult than with the ER4 series....at least for me), the sound is wonderful. Great detail in those little buggers.
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May 1, 2002 at 10:27 PM Post #3 of 34

JMT

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Quote:

However, Etymotic is not a very large company in the headphone market


Maybe not, but they have a fine product. Don Wilson from Etymotic is a member here and posts occasionally about their products. While I cannot speak to the ER6, the ER-4 series is phenominal.
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May 1, 2002 at 10:31 PM Post #4 of 34

Wendigee

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would you say that the er-6 have better sound quality than the Grado SR-60?

I have a pair of Sennheiser 495s, and the left earpiece quit working. Since my cd player sucks at driving them anyway, im going to replace them with something else instead of having them repaired. I have listened to my brothers grado sr-60s with my player and it sounds quite nice. I was wondering if the etymotics ER-6 would perform at least as well as the grados?
 
May 1, 2002 at 10:46 PM Post #5 of 34

AdamP88

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Actually, in the hi-fidelity/audiophile headphone market, Etymotic is one of the most respected names, and for good reason. Their products are very hi-quality, as is their service (one of their engineers frequents this board and has always been very open and generous with his time and knowledge). I have the ER6, and at it's price (or anywhere close to it), you will not find a better sounding earbud, period. The only earbuds/canalphones that I know of that are better are the Etymotic ER4P and 4S, and those cost significantly more.

Quality is superb, but bear in mind that these are very small so despite their build quality you should treat them with a little more care than your regular earbud. Fit is a bit of an issue, although Etymotic has solved that for me with the foam earpads. If you have large ears, then the silicone tips might make it hard for you to achieve a good seal, but with the foam tips it's very easy to get a good seal.

As far as sound, these are very neutral headphones that are clean, clear, and extremely detailed (they render microdynamics particularly well - I can only imagine what the ER4S does). Treble is among the best I've heard out of headphones in terms of clarity and extension, the midrange is very pleasing - maybe could use just a touch more warmth for my tastes (but that might be a personal thing), and the bass, while not as full-bodied as you're probably used to in headphones, is still very deep and tight. Instrument seperation is fantastic - and the soundstage, while definitely not as wide as regular over-the-ear headphones, is still very well clear and doesn't feel compressed like many closed headphones do.

I think the biggest thing you'll have to get used to with these headphones is their fit. The go fairly deep into your ear (as compared to your common earbud), and some people find the sensation of having "plugged" ears a little annoying. I myself don't really mind, although sometimes I'd rather listen to my full-sized headphones just to forego the minor hassle of putting the Etys in. Another thing, they offer A LOT of isolation - when I'm listening to them I really can't hear much of anything going on around me (I've had housemates yelling at me in the same room and I couldn't hear them) - this might be a good thing for you though, who knows.
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This also means that every time you want to talk to someone, you'll need to take out one side, and then have to stick it back in.

One thing you might want to check out is getting a portable amp (does the Riot have a line out or just a headphone jack). There's a chance that the ER6 might sound a little thin out of the headphone jack, even though it should be powered well enough by your average heaphone jack. I know that my Ety's sound filled out a bit when I got a headphone amplifier.

I guess that's about it. And, if you want to see if the Ety's are for you or get other recommendations, feel free to call Headroom (www.headphone.com - best headphone retailers on the planet
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) and they'll be glad to help you out. They offer a 30 day money-back period so you can buy something and try it out, and if you don't like it you can send it back and get a full refund.
 
May 1, 2002 at 10:51 PM Post #6 of 34

MacDEF

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If you do a search for ER6 or ER-6, you'll find lots of reviews. Since this is a relatively new headphone, it's pretty safe to say that all of the reviews are from actual owners.
 
May 2, 2002 at 1:37 AM Post #7 of 34

MagicBoy14

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Wow! Thanks for all the responses. I just have one more quick question:
Etymotic's web site says that you should moisten the ER-6 prior to inserting them into your ear for best results. On the go, that's easier said than done...is that step really necessary?
 
May 2, 2002 at 1:55 AM Post #8 of 34

Matt

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...never had 6's, but the Ety bottom line is this: assume you're going to hate their guts at first (the insertions, the seals, all that ********), but you WILL get your technique down and once that stuff is out of the way, you will most likely fall in love.

So, don't worry about the seal and all that shiz; you'll get it down. And these guys are right, for the price, you get you some damn good sound, dog.

- Matt
 
May 2, 2002 at 1:57 AM Post #9 of 34

MagicBoy14

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Thanks. That reassures me a bit about it's...unorthodox format. But what I really want to know is: When I'm on the go and can't moisten the ER-6's, can I still use them perfectly well?
 
May 2, 2002 at 2:20 AM Post #10 of 34

legoman

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Quote:

Originally posted by MagicBoy14
Thanks. That reassures me a bit about it's...unorthodox format. But what I really want to know is: When I'm on the go and can't moisten the ER-6's, can I still use them perfectly well?


sounds like the foam tips should do the trick
 
May 2, 2002 at 2:21 AM Post #11 of 34

davo

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I moisten mine, but I don't stick them in my mouth to do so. I just moisten my fingertips and then transfer that to the white tips.

Is that your concern?

It's really no hassle at all.

Hope you grow to like them as much as I do.
 

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