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How much money does good bass in an IEM really cost?

  1. JakeBassHead
    I'm fresh off a pair of Sennheiser IE80s. They just don't do it for me without an amp and EQ, and even with the amp they're only ok. I tried out the GR07's, they're pretty muddy by comparison. I'm really interested in finding a loud pair of bluetooth headphones with a clear signature. To be honest, I picked up a pair of $30 SoundPEATs, some knockoff, no-name made in China bluetooth in-ears and they sound very similar to the IE80s, albeit about 2db quieter and clipping on the low end at full volume, but the sub bass packs on just about the same. I'm really, really disappointed in the IE80s. I'm going to return them, and I'm looking at the Shure SE846's.

    These are a whole $800 more than the IE80s. Is that how much getting an improvement with in-ear's costs? There has to be something better. I'm reaching out for help, guys. Help me out.
  2. ckvp
    I've never heard the IE80s, and they probably (definitely?) aren't as good as the Shures.

    But for me, only $60. The Massdrop x NuForce EDC have pretty good bass, are comfortable, come with 2 cables (one braided, one with a mic), and have more or less become my EDC since I got them.

    Last edited: May 16, 2018
  3. JakeBassHead
    These look pretty nice, I know Nu has a reputation. I'm just confused at the sprawl of quality and price range with very little improvement on recommendations since 2012.

    Most of my research leads me back to the Sennheiser IE80s, Sony MDR-7550s, Shure SE535s, GR07s, and the Fender FXA5s, which have all been around for years. Has audio tech really not improved that much in that time, or have the knock offs just caught up?
  4. ckvp
    Oh there are much better choices I think, I'm just a bargain hunter haha.
  5. serman005
    I am quite happy with my IT01's bass performance and its sensitivity of 108 dB makes it very easy to drive (16 ohms), so volumes are quite substantial. Clipping should be a non-factor. And btw--this is a fairly recent release, unlike those you list. Worth a look. Maybe read about it and see what you think. It could work.
  6. JakeBassHead
    I'm sending the IE80s back and these have been added to my cart haha.
  7. serman005
    Let us know how it works out for you. ---)
  8. ProtegeManiac Contributor
    If you can still find Aurisonics ASG-1.3's NOS (or if you don't mind used) they might be what you're looking for. Massive bass plateau from 800hz down to well below 50hz, 15mm dynamic driver, 125dB/1mW sensitivity (before an Android update sometime in 2014 they were already ear shattering loud at just three presses of the + button on the SGS3); 32ohms so the dynamic driver will have less damping factor issues than if it's any lower.

    Only device I had a problem with it were an SGS and SGS3 - bass is bloated on those. Note3, Note4, SGS7, etc had clean, loud sound. With my Ibasso D-Zero there wasn't that huge an improvement over the Note phones but it's like having a portable LCD-2 and Lyr, if with dry vocals and treble.

    The real problem is finding one because when Fender acquired Aurisonics the ASG pro line was killed off in favor of the 9mm DD-based (with higher models having BA drivers for the higher frequencies) Harmony line.
    Last edited: May 16, 2018
  9. JakeBassHead
    That's a real bummer about the Fender acquisition, I never understood why they got so much hate until now. I don't know how I feel about used earphones--I really do have a thing for buying new hardware, especially because returns are a thing if the signature doesn't feel like a good fit. That 15mm driver... how do you think it compares to the Sony MDR-7550/EX1000 which has a 16mm driver?
  10. ProtegeManiac Contributor
    Closest to it within the resurrected Aurisonics line up tonally but a downgrade in other aspects is the $100 Fender DXA1. That said they're more likely to have less fit issues on more people than their other shell design.

    Only tried the MDR-7550 once and from what I remember the bass seemed stronger but overall the tonal balance was slightly different. It's not bad but the way it reproduces the bass, there's a bit of a subtle quality about the bass that's kind of reminiscent of the bass from cars that had B52 subwoofers made by people who didn't know there's some math involved when making subwoofer boxes. Could have been a fit issue though.
  11. marcussmj
    I think the IT01 is alright, so is the GR07.

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