Going fully Wireless IEMs. Too soon? Or are we there yet?
Mar 11, 2021 at 4:44 AM Post #30,511 of 62,044
Either you are not very sensitive to resolution/clarity or the music files you listened to are low quality, maybe both actually, I listened to both extensively and while the resolution of Polaris is not outstanding comparing to its iem competitors, the resolution/clarity of the sonys is trash.
It'a all relative to be honest. You might think Sony XM3 are trash but what are you basing it on - comparisons to wired iems? Of course, no competition. Compared to other wireless earphones, I stand by my opinion that they're the best out there. It's a compromise with truly wireless earphones and one shouldn't expect a wired earphone experience - not now anyway, maybe one day.
 
Mar 11, 2021 at 6:51 AM Post #30,513 of 62,044
It'a all relative to be honest. You might think Sony XM3 are trash but what are you basing it on - comparisons to wired iems? Of course, no competition. Compared to other wireless earphones, I stand by my opinion that they're the best out there. It's a compromise with truly wireless earphones and one shouldn't expect a wired earphone experience - not now anyway, maybe one day.

Yeah that comment came out of nowhere, and if you check he's saying about the same thing about the Melomania when replying to someone else, basically trashing their headphone assessing ability.

There is no doubt wired are still where it's at, even with simple electronic sources (like smartphone).

But at least in my case, vs the Polaris V2 (which i loved since i appreciate bass heavy headphoneS), the XM3s simply surprised me a lot! They actually have areas where they are better. Sure, Polaris have more crystal highs and much more sub-bass, but the bloat in the bass smudges a lot of the mids, whereas this is where the XM3 shines as in many genres, it's clearer across the freq range and sounds more open.

Btw, I see you have the LEGENDARY Z1R. I never had a chance to listen to them. How do they compare to the XM3s? I'm not asking whether they are better, i've 0 doubt. I'm just wondering in terms of tuning and sound signature. Do they have commonalities?
 
Mar 11, 2021 at 8:16 AM Post #30,514 of 62,044
What does auto eq do? I used to regularly use wavelet until I got the MT, which eq's on actual hardware/bud level. I just remember auto-eq used to sound great, but I don't know what settings it automatically tries to eq to.
Quote from the project home page:
AutoEQ is a project for equalizing headphone frequency responses automatically and it achieves this by parsing frequency response measurements and producing equalization settings which correct the headphone to a neutral sound.
Not all headphones I have tried using the settings for sound better, but there are some that are made to sound amazing, or at the least make it possible to get my own EQ settings tuned in a bit better. When I first started using it, like @miserybeforethemusic I added all 10 of the EQ settings provided in a file manually, but then realized that you can just open Wavelet, or Neutron and search the database for your headphones, and have it load those settings for you.
 
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Mar 11, 2021 at 8:22 AM Post #30,515 of 62,044
Yeah that comment came out of nowhere, and if you check he's saying about the same thing about the Melomania when replying to someone else, basically trashing their headphone assessing ability.

There is no doubt wired are still where it's at, even with simple electronic sources (like smartphone).

But at least in my case, vs the Polaris V2 (which i loved since i appreciate bass heavy headphoneS), the XM3s simply surprised me a lot! They actually have areas where they are better. Sure, Polaris have more crystal highs and much more sub-bass, but the bloat in the bass smudges a lot of the mids, whereas this is where the XM3 shines as in many genres, it's clearer across the freq range and sounds more open.

Btw, I see you have the LEGENDARY Z1R. I never had a chance to listen to them. How do they compare to the XM3s? I'm not asking whether they are better, i've 0 doubt. I'm just wondering in terms of tuning and sound signature. Do they have commonalities?

I've always wanted to dip my toe in the Campfire Audio world and have looked on at the Polaris 2 and Atlas with a keen eye! lol But yes, I share your opinions about he XM3, I think if you did a blind test and put them into someone's ears, they'd have a hard time telling it was wireless.

The Z1R are my favourite purchase in the hobby so far. I'm a fan of the Sony house sound, so it was a dream to get hold of them, albeit second hand, but very impressed by what they offer. There's that familiar Sony tuning that they share, warmish slightly v shaped, fun sound, the Z1R is more refined on both ends (and the mids) obviously and has a much wider soundstage but moving from them straight to the XM3, you can tell they're cut from the same cloth. Quite frankly, I'm excited for the XM4, based off what has been offered in the XM3, a close to wired sound in wireless form is the dream as I don't take the Z1R or any my headphones out of the house so I rely on the TWS to sound decent-ish.
 
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Mar 11, 2021 at 8:40 AM Post #30,517 of 62,044
I got them at $165 in last week of November with 10% cashback on top of that if using Amazon prime card, which I did. I ended up returning them couple weeks later. But that was before people knew about them so they were trying to get people to buy to get more reviews up. Two weeks after that, they pumped the price up to $200.

Honestly, if they were more comfortable & secure, I probably would have kept them. I really liked their build quality even though I preferred the sound of Sennheiser/Sony. Sennheiser cx400 were another pair I found very uncomfortable. I have hard time finding many of the stock eartips comfortable. I really need to find a pair of eartips made just for TWS that I can use universally. That's my primary issue I kept coming across in my 2 month search - lack of comfort.
The CX400 didn't fit me well, either. The square, boxy form factor put pressure on my ear cartilage.
 
Mar 11, 2021 at 8:43 AM Post #30,518 of 62,044
After some pretty unhelpful communication with Cambridge Audio I am looking for some help from this forum instead.
I have the MT but I need to try some foam tips to see if I can get a better fit. I know they do not recommend foam tips but its worth a try. Would anyone have any idea what size I would need.
I usually use Comply and they have a lot of different models
 
Mar 11, 2021 at 8:44 AM Post #30,519 of 62,044
Either you are not very sensitive to resolution/clarity or the music files you listened to are low quality, maybe both actually, I listened to both extensively and while the resolution of Polaris is not outstanding comparing to its iem competitors, the resolution/clarity of the sonys is trash.
I didn't care for the XM3's, either. Veiled and a bit boomy, just like Sony's wireless over-ears. Different strokes for different folks! :)
 
Mar 11, 2021 at 8:55 AM Post #30,520 of 62,044
After some pretty unhelpful communication with Cambridge Audio I am looking for some help from this forum instead.
I have the MT but I need to try some foam tips to see if I can get a better fit. I know they do not recommend foam tips but its worth a try. Would anyone have any idea what size I would need.
I usually use Comply and they have a lot of different models
Im pretty sure the bore size is just standard size, but the tip length needs to be under 7.5mm. It could be a bit longer, like 8mm, but I don't think anything over that would work. Someone posted the specs of the stock (custom) tips that CA uses here in this thread. I have read on another forum of some using Comply tips, though they had to trim them down to fit in the case. They didn't mention specs, just that it IS possible to do.

In looking at the neck on the buds, it looks like they weren't intended to go all the way into your ear (which is a shame really), so fitment has been hit or miss for a lot of people.
 
Mar 11, 2021 at 9:19 AM Post #30,521 of 62,044
OK. Found it. Originally posted by @Canabuc. Here is the info you requested... whew! :) :
 

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Mar 11, 2021 at 9:36 AM Post #30,522 of 62,044
I didn't care for the XM3's, either. Veiled and a bit boomy, just like Sony's wireless over-ears. Different strokes for different folks! :)

That really depends what you're looking for and what you are comparing it with. As far as the Polaris V2, they are great especially for sub-bass and bassheads (techno music, etc). But as far as my assessment, I stand by it 100%. I have both XM3 and Polaris V2 on my desk. Have you tried the Polaris V2? It's good but there's a LOT of bass bleed into the mids, and it makes the sound much more veiled, boomy and narrow/boxy vs the XM3. Also, it really depends how you set up the XM3. I found that setting the options to DSEE On and Priority Sound Quality makes a huge difference. Just for the record, DSEE is set to OFF and connection is set to Connection Priority as Default when you set them up. Which i think is a BIG mistake by Sony. They should've let these settings on the best sound quality by default. Many folks didn't care to look up these options in the app (or some didn't even install the app at all) and got a much inferior sound out of the XM3 than what they are truly capable off. I see this in online reviews as well, there are people reviewing them as great and some as flat and veiled. I'm pretty sure it has something to do with the setup and options.
 
Mar 11, 2021 at 9:39 AM Post #30,523 of 62,044
Thanks for your input!
There is no easy return here, you can't even try them in shop .. as soon as you open the box, they can't sell as new anymore, so nope. Usually the prices here are crazy, like 50-100% on top of regular US price ... but with these, it is 'only' 10% .. and that actually would put them on par with the European 279€ price tag (Of course, now that I check, I see that amazon.de has them for 205€!)
I don;t really NEED another set, nor do I have any travel coming up ... but I happen to have a bit of money to burn (since there is nothing else to buy :D ) and well, those popped up on my radar ... How would you rate the ANC compared to the QC20?

I will keep those soundpeats in mind ... right now they want 60$ fedex shipping to my location ...
The ANC of the QC buds and the QC20 are pretty similar. It's tough to do a great comparison without travelling but both will suffice. I am currently enjoying a pair of Jabra 85ts that I picked up refurbished on eBay. They have pretty decent NC but I think the Bose is better.

Stupid addicting hobby. I don't "need" it but I "need" it.
 
Mar 11, 2021 at 9:42 AM Post #30,524 of 62,044
I've always wanted to dip my toe in the Campfire Audio world and have looked on at the Polaris 2 and Atlas with a keen eye! lol But yes, I share your opinions about he XM3, I think if you did a blind test and put them into someone's ears, they'd have a hard time telling it was wireless.

The Z1R are my favourite purchase in the hobby so far. I'm a fan of the Sony house sound, so it was a dream to get hold of them, albeit second hand, but very impressed by what they offer. There's that familiar Sony tuning that they share, warmish slightly v shaped, fun sound, the Z1R is more refined on both ends (and the mids) obviously and has a much wider soundstage but moving from them straight to the XM3, you can tell they're cut from the same cloth. Quite frankly, I'm excited for the XM4, based off what has been offered in the XM3, a close to wired sound in wireless form is the dream as I don't take the Z1R or any my headphones out of the house so I rely on the TWS to sound decent-ish.

Well the campfires are great, particularly the Polaris V2 - but that's only if you like bass heavy headphones. The issue I have with them only appeared after comparing them with the XM3 - the bass bleeds too much in the mids and as a result makes the sound narrower, boxyer and more bloated than the XM3, as well as veiling some details. If you want something closer to the XM3 in sound tuning, I think you'd have to compare them to something like the Solaris , but that's Z1R price-range. So since you already have the Z1R...you basically don't need anything else :)

As far as practicality, yeah, that's a HUGE advantage. Tried the other day to use the (wired) campfires, no chance. It's just TOO MUCH hassle to use it especially when you use your phone to pay/wear a jacket/wear a mask. TWS is the future, no doubt.

The only notable complaint I have with the XM3 is their somewhat lackluster sub-bass, but I think that's rather a limitation of the 6mm (small) dynamic driver than the bt connection/electronics. Here's hoping the XM4 come with something more substantial, maybe a 10mm-ish one, that would definitely solve the sub-bass issue. Who knows, maybe they go dynamic-driver + balanced armature, like the XBA series? I also have the XBA-N1 (wired) and love the sound, maybe more than the much more expensive Polaris v2. I always wondered why no one thought about making a multi-driver TWS. Maybe sony will be the first one. Maybe not, but it will have a killer single dynamic driver.

In any case, if the leaks are to be trusted, the box says high-res wireless. This can only mean one thing - they finally figured out how to make LDAC work on TWS earphones :D
 

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