Got my New E5's Today....
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wolfen68

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...from Microphonesolutions.

I'm trying to improve on my E3's...which I already enjoy....

I'll skip a lot of details as E5's are "old news" these days, however, some minor impressions and solicitation for any comments.

I listened to my usual test tracks through my Grado 225's, went to my E3's, then put on the E5's. Norah Jones, Neko Case, Ramones, No Doubt for starters....

First impression, I was not wowed. The E5 sound is definitely full and warm. The bass sounds slightly muddy, but so do the mids. As I listen longer, I must be getting used to it as things seem to be improving. I had to provide a little help through my Archos by making the bass flat and cranking the treble to max (this would kill me with the Grados). But with the E5's, it seems to work. I did find some high frequencies on Neko Case's "Furnace Room Lullabies" which was encouraging. Overall the sound is "better" than my E3's...my mission will be to figure out if they are $200+ better to my ears. I have 30 days to decide.

I like the flush fit as compared to E3's. They chafe my outer ear slightly (but my E2's did to and I got used to them). I was excited about trying the triflange's, but they go in too deep for my comfort. I always seem to be stuck with foamies for isolation and minimal insertion. I've pretty much decided that UE's or Sensaphonics (or Ety's for that matter) are not in my future because they'll go in too deep for me.

If I keep the E5's...the E3's gotta go. I hate decisions like this.
 
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Orpheus

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i posted before... but you should try the different supplied tips. there is such a thing as "too" good a seal with the E5. if the seal is too good, the bass will be overwhelming (and as a result, the high's will be relatively recessed.) at first the bass was so heavby that i thought the high-frequency driver was blown! try using smaller plugs... don't use the foamies or tri-flanges. they will seal too well. unless if you want really super-duper heavy bass (relative to other benchmarks.)
 
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Your impressions are similar to my first impressions. Keep listening. I liked mine much better after a couple of weeks, so I decided to hang on to them and I'm glad I did. They're definitely not models of clarity, but the detail is there--I think it just takes your ears to get used to them.
 
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I think pretty much everyone who owns E5s felt the same way when they first got them! Give them some time, and you'll get used to their sound, and they'll start to sound as good or better than anything else you own
 
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Orpheus

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naw.... you should NOT get used to the sound. that sound is wrong. again, don't get a good seal, otherwise it'll just sound wrong. the way i have it now, it sounds very balanced, and with very deep bass extension. deepness, not just more of it. the highs are there too... just as much as any other phone i have very used. i think you all just have too good of a seal. avoid the tri-flanges and foamies. they seal way to well for these phones.
 
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wolfen - congrats on the e5's. they are really sweet phones.

here's the problem: clip the tubes of the triflanges to make them FLUSH with the LARGEST FLANGE.

this will fix the fit of the tri-flanges and allow you to discover what the e5's are truly all about.

also, about the casing of the e5's hitting you're outer ear, you ears will adjust and that will no longer be an issue in time. (i hear some chuckling from the custom iem crowd, but don't mind them.)

the e5's are absolutely light years (an understatement) ahead of the e3's in terms of full frequency reproduction capabilities, especially the lowend.
 
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wolfen68

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Thanks toaster, I'll try that....but I have to wait until I'm sure I'm going to keep them before I go destroying parts. The other part I'd love to hack up is the stiffening wire inside the first 3 inches of cord. In concept it seems like a good idea, but I find it less comfortable then the e2/e3 "loose wire" method. It seems the wire and outer casing would be hard to remove...very fine cutting work. I wouldn't want to try for fear of voiding the warranty, or worse yet, destroying any resale value.

I was listening to music for three hours, finishing with Joe Satriani's "Circles" (no vocals...kinda heavy techno guitar) on the E5 and immediately switched back again to the E3. I figured that after that length of time my ears would be acclimated and the E3 would sound obviously inferior. In fact, the sound was nearly equal. I was on the verge of giving up at that point and saving some money. However, shortly after that I was listening to Jet's "Cold Hard B****" on the E3 and I went back to the E5. This time I experienced a minor wow as the vocals really fleshed out and the song became more rich and full. It's really strange how these devices respond differently to different songs/types of music.

To back up, this is how I got to where I am. I've had E3's and used them regularly. Recently, I was listening to Styx "Renegade" (something I don't usually listen to as I've been burned out on classic rock) on my SR-225's. To my total surprise, the "heartbeat" bass with the simple vovals in the first 20 seconds of the song had amazingingly full and deep impact. I felt it in my ears. I've heard this song since I was a little shaver and NEVER heard this before. Later that day, I listened to the song on my E3's...and guess what? The bass wasn't there. It was dull, distant and unrecognizable.

This convinced me that E5's had to be tried. By the way, The E5's represent that beat in Renegade almost as good as the Grados
.....but it's everything else I'm listening for now.
 
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wolfen68 - I found that the best way to get used to the E5 is to listen to it and nothing else for several days straight. You will be amazed how much better they sound if you do this and allow yourself to get acclimated to the sound as well as the fit over time. Note that I'm not talking about burn-in. I'm talking about letting yourself get acclimated to the sound of the E5.

When I first listened to the E5 I thought they sounded horrible! After a day and a half of solid E5 use they sounded much much better and after a full week I was fully acclimated and could then switch back and forth between the E3 (which I sold) or full sized cans easily. My brain had learned how to pick out all of the detail and sort out the forward presentation of the bass and mid-range in complex music without me thinking about it anymore and I could then compare them to other cans. It's sort of like riding a bike - once you figure it out you just do it without thinking.

I still go back and forth on the memory cord - is it the best thing since sliced bread or is it some bizarre torture device? It does allow you to slightly remove an earpiece and still hang it on your ear without having it dangle loosely. Over time you may find that fitting the cord makes it useful. If not, you can always strip it off - there is a thread with this mod around here somewhere with details of how to do this. I still have mine intact ... for now.

I have not experienced any of the issues that Orpheus states so I believe this is another case of canalphone fit being a very individual thing. I did find that you can still get decent sound out of the E5 even if your seal is less than perfect but my music sounds best to me on the E5 when the seal is good. I use mainly the shure triple flanges with a small amount of the stalk trimmed down to adjust for depth of insertion.

Good luck and let us know how things turn out.
 
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Wolfen --

Just thought I'd let you know that the Ultimate Ears UE5c memory cord is MUCH shorter, about a half inch to an inch in length I would guess, and doesn't get in the way at all.

As for fit they do NOT go "too far" in for comfort. Because they are custom molded for your ear, they just go in easily and fit like a glove. You don't have to compensate for a poor seal by shoving them in to China (as I had to do with Shure E3's, for example.)

And the sound -- well, the bass is wonderful and tight and never muddy or overwhelming. And the mids and highs are wonderful! Trance music in these 'phones is a religious experience!

The moral is that if you are still not sold, after a time, with the E5, take the plunge on UE5c. Trust me -- you won't be disappointed.
 
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Quote:

I have not experienced any of the issues that Orpheus states so I believe this is another case of canalphone fit being a very individual thing.


perhaps this is so. again, when i used the foamies, i actually first thought that one of the drivers were blown, it was that bad. the bass was so thunderous, and everything just sounded really weird--whole voices were missing. but now at work i use it with the smallest clear tip (i must have small canals) and it sounds so dang perfect. very good. i have never heard a better portable.
 
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Quote:

Originally Posted by wolfen68
Thanks toaster, I'll try that....but I have to wait until I'm sure I'm going to keep them before I go destroying parts. The other part I'd love to hack up is the stiffening wire inside the first 3 inches of cord. In concept it seems like a good idea, but I find it less comfortable then the e2/e3 "loose wire" method. It seems the wire and outer casing would be hard to remove...very fine cutting work. I wouldn't want to try for fear of voiding the warranty, or worse yet, destroying any resale value.

...It's really strange how these devices respond differently to different songs/types of music.



if you get rid of the e5's, the used tri-flanges probably won't sell anyway, so you might as well give them a trim.

i modded my memory wire on the e5's. i can't tell you how much more comfortable and easier to put on the e5's are with the memory wire trimmed to one third it's original length. (trimming the wire is also very easy to do this with just your fingernails, no sharp cutting objects necessary. using your fingers makes it nearly failproof to damage.)

depending on the recording, the differences between the e3 and the e5 will be made more clear. on a crappy recording, you probably won't hear too much of a difference. but on a well recorded song, the difference will be tremendous, not to mention the bass on the e5's is incredible, especially in comparison to the e3's, which is lacking so much in the lowend.
 
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wolfen68

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Thanks all for the advice...everybody's been very helpful and pretty much spot on. It's always tough going through the learning phase with new hardware.

I now have about 4-5 hours of listening on my E5's. They do sound better, but they still seem slightly "blurred" on some music. I've also learned that they sound terrible out of my Yamaha reciever (no big deal, portable is the word here). I have decided they are definitely better than the E3's....but the Ultimate ears option is still intriguing me. I need to end this constant search for the best portable sound...it's like a disease.....

The ue5c's would be here also to compare...but it's a one way trip in which I'm stuck with them if I don't like them. It's fitting that they are in Vegas...because it feels like gambling


I have to get past this.
 
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I trimmed the stalk on the tri-flanges about halfway based on others' comments and liked the improved high end on the E5s. I guess I must have huge canals, because the foamies provide no bass at all and little more than puny, tinny trebly sound. One tip that might be an option for you is the soft flex sleeve. Not a lot of positive comments on it here, but I do find the medium size ones provide good seal and terrific high end response. They sort of reverse the "middling" of the E5s, with booming base and tingly highs.

Not to throw a wallet-bashing monkey wrench into the equation, but I can't help myself...my E5s spend most of their time in the drawer, coming out to play only seldomly. I'm one of those poor souls who got hooked on the ER4Ps, and just can't get enough of that crisp, clean Ety sound of all my music. Even forced me to go to Apple Lossless files to clean up the source. Still enjoy the E5s from time to time though, when I need a break from the intensity of the ER4s with the more homogenized sound of the Shures.
 
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