FlaresPro/FlaresGold by Flare Audio
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james444

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I've not seen a description of their Acoustic Lens Technology but it sounds like dispersion control so the pressure waves are more direct. Not that it is focusing a dispersed ray to a precise point like an image of optical lenses may bring to mind, just making it very directional and pointing toward the eardrum. As I say, I've never seen Flare give a description, so is a guess.

They could call it a horn but you can't turn that into a marketing phrase so easily !
I can imagine something like that making sense in free field conditions. But in a closed ear canal, with pretty much all audible wavelengths being longer than the chamber, sound pressure is distributed uniformly anyway.
 
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barondla

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I took the gold plating explanation to be similar to a port on speakers. Smoother surfaces allow smoother air flow and less turbulence. Turbulence is probably very noticeable right in the ear.
 
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paul2qute

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I took the gold plating explanation to be similar to a port on speakers. Smoother surfaces allow smoother air flow and less turbulence. Turbulence is probably very noticeable right in the ear.
It really is a science,if you look at b&w speakers the ports have a golfball effect and not smooth to give a more controlled flow,if you look at the focal utopia,it's like the gold with the rear opening and you can see the driver,very open design,different ways of doing things to get to the same result
 
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McCol

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My Gold’s are going to be delayed due to the weather! Probably either tomorrow or next week for my delivery now. Thing is weather is fine where I am
 
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awayeah

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Don't suppose you have had another listen? ?
Well, now I did (I am actually).
It's going to take a long time to evaluate this and a lot of various foams to test.
I've started with "old" audiophile foams from Flare (and they of course broke apart right away) - the differences between GOLD and PRO are very, very minor and at the same time very significant.
Let me explain - old Flares (R2A, R2pro, R2S) were very different in all aspects of sound (given that it was the same driver and cable), new Flares (PRO, GOLD) share the same sound signature, so they both have basically the same sound but... the devil is in the details. GOLDs have less dry bass and even a bit more cleaner, GOLDs have more substance in upper midrange/hights, making them less thin and because of that, less shrilling. Soundstage is also different but it's too soon to describe - It's not that it's bigger but somewhat more accurate (or less, depending on who's judging :wink: ).
Weirdly, changing to Comply's has much different effect than on PROs. It's darker, seems more muddy but all the little details are still there, textures are a bit worse but soundstage is now bigger (weird). Well they're much more listenable on Comply's than PROs.
I need to check INAirs and Havi's foams and then move to Flare regular and improved audiophile foams.

All in all - if you're testing only best IEMs on market, the differences becomes smaller and smaller and here's the same story. Don't expect some game changing product and it's definitely not worthy of the premium price over PROs.

On other topic...
For all of you owning Flare R2pro - please check Sabaj DA3. It's an amazing little DAC/amp, very cheap and great pairing with R2pro. I'm listeting to this combo everyday at work and it's brilliant. Though Sabaj do nothing special for Flares PRO or GOLD (but I don't really know what do - everything I've checked, ultimately played worse than bluetooth module even though subbas was better extended when using wired connection).
 
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james444

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I took the gold plating explanation to be similar to a port on speakers. Smoother surfaces allow smoother air flow and less turbulence. Turbulence is probably very noticeable right in the ear.
It really is a science,if you look at b&w speakers the ports have a golfball effect and not smooth to give a more controlled flow,if you look at the focal utopia,it's like the gold with the rear opening and you can see the driver,very open design,different ways of doing things to get to the same result
I'm afraid, you can"t compare speakers to IEMs in that regard. Please read up on the pressure chamber effect, to understand that different acoustic principles apply. Here's a post on Innerfidelity which touches on that (scroll down a bit):

https://www.innerfidelity.com/comment/512701#comment-512701

Also, the rear vent of dynamic IEMs enhances the driver's bass response, but apart from that, has no effect on what's going on between the front side of the driver and your ear drum.
 
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Fiberoptix

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Received my Flares Pro on Monday and have been using daily since. I'm really enjoying them from a technical standpoint. The separation, imaging, speed, soundstage is very good, even in comparison to my 10 driver customs and they completely smash them in bass tuning and quality. However, where I find them lacking and one the issues I'm having is in tonality. There is a certain metallic edge in the upper range which give them a very digital tonality. Where some of my other earphones are able to provide a very detailed and rich presentation and remain organic and natural sounding the Flares seem to always delivery a noticeably digital sound. At least to my ears.

Does this change with burn in of drivers (if any!)?

Other than that I can certainly enjoy them for what they are but even compared to the old R2's they definitely lack in overall organic and natural presentation. The only other thing I'm finding annoying is the ridiculously short cables when using the bluetooth unit. It would have been nice to be able to clip to trousers or lower down. I'm having to make some kind of neck chain thing to clip the device on which is not ideal. I hope that Flare come up with an extension cable, or maybe I will just make my own.
 
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paul2qute

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Well, now I did (I am actually).
It's going to take a long time to evaluate this and a lot of various foams to test.
I've started with "old" audiophile foams from Flare (and they of course broke apart right away) - the differences between GOLD and PRO are very, very minor and at the same time very significant.
Let me explain - old Flares (R2A, R2pro, R2S) were very different in all aspects of sound (given that it was the same driver and cable), new Flares (PRO, GOLD) share the same sound signature, so they both have basically the same sound but... the devil is in the details. GOLDs have less dry bass and even a bit more cleaner, GOLDs have more substance in upper midrange/hights, making them less thin and because of that, less shrilling. Soundstage is also different but it's too soon to describe - It's not that it's bigger but somewhat more accurate (or less, depending on who's judging :wink: ).
Weirdly, changing to Comply's has much different effect than on PROs. It's darker, seems more muddy but all the little details are still there, textures are a bit worse but soundstage is now bigger (weird). Well they're much more listenable on Comply's than PROs.
I need to check INAirs and Havi's foams and then move to Flare regular and improved audiophile foams.

All in all - if you're testing only best IEMs on market, the differences becomes smaller and smaller and here's the same story. Don't expect some game changing product and it's definitely not worthy of the premium price over PROs.

On other topic...
For all of you owning Flare R2pro - please check Sabaj DA3. It's an amazing little DAC/amp, very cheap and great pairing with R2pro. I'm listeting to this combo everyday at work and it's brilliant. Though Sabaj do nothing special for Flares PRO or GOLD (but I don't really know what do - everything I've checked, ultimately played worse than bluetooth module even though subbas was better extended when using wired connection).
Thanks for that mate interesting read
 
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LuckyNat

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I'm afraid, you can"t compare speakers to IEMs in that regard. Please read up on the pressure chamber effect, to understand that different acoustic principles apply. Here's a post on Innerfidelity which touches on that (scroll down a bit):

https://www.innerfidelity.com/comment/512701#comment-512701

Also, the rear vent of dynamic IEMs enhances the driver's bass response, but apart from that, has no effect on what's going on between the front side of the driver and your ear drum.
That's to ignore Flare Audio's innovative (well, not done else where - "innovative" is a positive spin on just being different) design approach. You can say in traditional terms that a rear vent enhances bass response, but the Flare Audio approach is that rear chamber design effects everything the driver does! Everything is about matching the presures in front and behind the driver so that movement is the same across all frequencies in both parts of the pressure wave, both negative pressure and positive pressure are equal.

How the air moves and how the rear chamber chracterises the air's response to pressure behind the driver at different frequencies, effects the driver's output compared to input signal trying to drive the membrane. So shaping the chamber may well be the largest part of that. Accuracy of the shaping of the chamber is what this gold plating is being claimed to improve.. Claimed, the important word here.

I igree though that we can't compare the rear opening to a speaker bass port, even if there are similarities. Mainly, probably, because you'd need to consider the size of the port in comparison to the chamber - this size port for such a small chamber is never seen on speakers, probably the hole in a Kef 104.2 closest but completely different still.
 
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majo123

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Received my Flares Pro on Monday and have been using daily since. I'm really enjoying them from a technical standpoint. The separation, imaging, speed, soundstage is very good, even in comparison to my 10 driver customs and they completely smash them in bass tuning and quality. However, where I find them lacking and one the issues I'm having is in tonality. There is a certain metallic edge in the upper range which give them a very digital tonality. Where some of my other earphones are able to provide a very detailed and rich presentation and remain organic and natural sounding the Flares seem to always delivery a noticeably digital sound. At least to my ears.

Does this change with burn in of drivers (if any!)?

Other than that I can certainly enjoy them for what they are but even compared to the old R2's they definitely lack in overall organic and natural presentation. The only other thing I'm finding annoying is the ridiculously short cables when using the bluetooth unit. It would have been nice to be able to clip to trousers or lower down. I'm having to make some kind of neck chain thing to clip the device on which is not ideal. I hope that Flare come up with an extension cable, or maybe I will just make my own.
I also have commented on this and had same findings on certain tracks and also source, it realy shows on a bad recording or a Brightish source in my opinion, but when I swapped for a more warmer source and also warmer headphones I can still hear it but not as defined.

Realy nice iems overall though.
 
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awayeah

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Received my Flares Pro on Monday and have been using daily since. I'm really enjoying them from a technical standpoint. The separation, imaging, speed, soundstage is very good, even in comparison to my 10 driver customs and they completely smash them in bass tuning and quality. However, where I find them lacking and one the issues I'm having is in tonality. There is a certain metallic edge in the upper range which give them a very digital tonality. Where some of my other earphones are able to provide a very detailed and rich presentation and remain organic and natural sounding the Flares seem to always delivery a noticeably digital sound. At least to my ears.

Does this change with burn in of drivers (if any!)?

Other than that I can certainly enjoy them for what they are but even compared to the old R2's they definitely lack in overall organic and natural presentation. The only other thing I'm finding annoying is the ridiculously short cables when using the bluetooth unit. It would have been nice to be able to clip to trousers or lower down. I'm having to make some kind of neck chain thing to clip the device on which is not ideal. I hope that Flare come up with an extension cable, or maybe I will just make my own.
Burn-in definitely helps (a lot of burn-in) but it does not eliminate this problem. You can also try different foams and different sizes (medium size audiophile foams are more than big enough for me, but large size seems to sound better - less sibilance, less digital as you've said).
I was hoping that this issue will be resolved with Flares GOLD but it didn'd (entirely) - though it's better. I am confident that what you've described is characteristic for beryllium driver and while it can be acoustically adjusted it will always be at some cost (i.e. Comply eliminates these issues but at the same time, soundstage gets more confined, some details are lost, texture are worse, etc.) By toggling different foams you can find best compromise for you but it will always be a compromise of some sort.
 
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LuckyNat

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There is a certain metallic edge in the upper range which give them a very digital tonality. Where some of my other earphones are able to provide a very detailed and rich presentation and remain organic and natural sounding the Flares seem to always delivery a noticeably digital sound. At least to my ears.
You can get that sound on analogue tape too. I think the "digital" metaphor for anything harsh sounding should be dropped personally because there's rarely anything digital about it - normally that sound in digital gear comes from analogue circuits parts of digital replay and is about the design, including analogue circuits of recording chain. It's also, likely in this case, down to the response of the driver - all an electrically analogue and physically analogue phenomenon. The Yamaha NS1000 speaker was a fantiastic monitor that delivered great speed and timing, combined with great detail and soundstage - transparency really. However, SOME found this to be harsh depending on their taste and then blame anything solid state for the sound - because digital wasn't around to blame.

I do agree though with the sentiment. Very occasional things can sound terrible - worst I had was a listening to music on youtube via my PC headphone output, I had to stop listening - played on Denon D5000s it was ok, just nothing great. All other youtube videos were fine though and sounding better than the Denons. So... source being showed up, but perhaps just a perfectly poor compressed version of a recording that either the Flares Pro were the only thing to reveal, or the Flares were being shown up by hitting a resonance peak or something by distortion at the just the same frequency in the source?

P.S. I used the NS1000 speaker as an example because it also had a beryillium midrange and tweeter - gave great results for some and harsher results for others.

From Yamaha's 1970s promotional material:

"
Introducing the Beryllium Dome.
Why did it take so long? After all, beryllium is the lightest, and most rigid metal known, and has a sound propagation velocity twice that of commonly used aluminum.
Beryllium is lighter and stronger and propagates sound better than other metals.
But because of beryllium's inherent characteristics, it resisted attempts by any manufacturer to form it into a diaphragm, let alone a dome. Until now.
The new Yamaha Beryllium Dome, formed by Yamaha's unique vacuum deposition process, is lighter than any other speaker diaphragm found today. So it's more responsive to direction changes in amplitude and frequency of the input signal. This is called transparency. It can be noticed best in complex musical passages and can be best described as highly defined and finely detailed. Only Yamaha has it. "

https://stereonomono.blogspot.co.uk/2013/05/yamaha-ns-1000-m-monitor.html

Quite likely, in my opinion, it is the sound of the driver - everything is a compromise!
 
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james444

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That's to ignore Flare Audio's innovative (well, not done else where - "innovative" is a positive spin on just being different) design approach. You can say in traditional terms that a rear vent enhances bass response, but the Flare Audio approach is that rear chamber design effects everything the driver does! Everything is about matching the presures in front and behind the driver so that movement is the same across all frequencies in both parts of the pressure wave, both negative pressure and positive pressure are equal.

How the air moves and how the rear chamber chracterises the air's response to pressure behind the driver at different frequencies, effects the driver's output compared to input signal trying to drive the membrane. So shaping the chamber may well be the largest part of that. Accuracy of the shaping of the chamber is what this gold plating is being claimed to improve.. Claimed, the important word here.

I igree though that we can't compare the rear opening to a speaker bass port, even if there are similarities. Mainly, probably, because you'd need to consider the size of the port in comparison to the chamber - this size port for such a small chamber is never seen on speakers, probably the hole in a Kef 104.2 closest but completely different still.
I think you misread my post, I meant you can't compare what's going on IN FRONT of IEM and speaker drivers, due to different acoustic environments (closed ear canal vs. free / diffuse field).

You can, of course, compare what's going on BEHIND the drivers. In both cases, rear air volume acts like a damping spring against driver movement. And the rear vent is simply a method to adjust the amount of rear damping (larger vent = more rear air volume = less rear damping). This works similarly for both IEMs and speakers.

Btw, the part you mentioned about matching the pressures in front and behind the driver, was something Flare claimed for their older (closed) IEMs, iirc. I don't think anyone would seriously claim that for rear vented IEMs like the FlarePros.
 
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Arysyn

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Does anyone who has the Flares Gold and has at least listened to the Flares Pro and noticed the metallic sound in the upper treble of the Flares Pro, is there the same metallic sound present in the Flares Gold? I've been trying to get Flare to answer more specific details about the sound differences, but they're trying to get me to take a trial of it after purchase instead. I think its wasteful, because if I hear that on the Flares Gold, I'll have to return it, which means a loss for Flare, and I'm trying to prevent that and of them getting bitter at me for another return, considering I had to return the FlaresPro and even the Flare R2Pro, although the latter was to AudioSanctuary and not for sound quality reasons.
 
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