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If you still love Etymotic ER4, this is the thread for you...

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  1. manthisis
    For those who wear their etymotics with bi-flange tips, how is the isolation and sound quality compared to the triple flanges? After a couple months of experimenting my left ear just doesn't accept triple flanges or foam, no matter how hard I try. Was thinking about trying these tips that were recommended a while back in the thread.
  2. udesign48
    I just got my ER4SR. and I'm impressed. This is what I was looking for.
    I don't think there's more detailed IEM than ER4SR. I can hear every instrument in a track!

    It sounds more detailed than Sony N3AP... although N3AP is still great.
  3. rbf1138
    Has anyone bought a replacement 4XR cable to use with the 2 or 3 XR? They’d be compatible, correct?
  4. dairy
    Yes, I believe they are compatible. The thing with the 4XR/SR cables, is that they are about a foot longer than the 2/3XR/SE cables, which I find quite annoying when using them on the commute. I had them replaced with a shorter cable, which I feel improved usability and portability significantly.

    episiarch likes this.
  5. Sunstealer
    I've done some digging and found a potential UK supplier of Sonion dampers. Has anyone changed the ER4XR/SR filters out and experimented? What diameter are they - 2.08?
  6. JohnYang1997
  7. Sunstealer
    Thank you - I'm not looking to improve the sound per se but just interested in fiddling around!
  8. JohnYang1997
    Yes they have the effects of dampers measured.
  9. Schwarzschild
    Wanted to jump in and say I've been following this thread for a year now. I come from a background of piano, and have always been passionate about music (especially classical and electronic), but I became interested in the world of high-quality audio after coming back from being stationed in Turkey, where I went through 3 pairs of "Beats" headphones in less than two years. After reading this whole thread and almost every review out there, I decided to take a leap and purchase the ER4XR and a Sony NW-A45 Walkman to compliment it. My friends and family think I am insane to spend upwards of $600 on audio gear (...and oh I'm not done yet, looking at getting into production as well).

    My only concerns about going from "Beats" to the ER4 was (1) the difference between dynamic vs. BA drivers, (2) "congested" sound / lack of soundstage, (3) lack of bass, and (4) the deep fit (which after reading the thread, is almost everyone's same concerns). But I read things like "fast and clean", "it's like the best drink of water you've ever had"...I thought that since I was moving up to higher quality, I may as well start with the most neutral/flat sound. As you know, "Beats" are ridiculously bloated and V-shaped, so if I got myself used to flat sound right away I would be more appreciative of the higher detail.

    (1) The difference in drivers is absolutely negligible when you have this much detail in the music. The first thing I realized is..."man I'm gonna have to get better quality tracks". It's like I gained another dimension in the music (mids), and heard twice the instruments and sounds as before. They do very much reveal a bad recording or compression in a track. But things like a snare drum, or vocals, are so close and intimate, like you are inside of the recording equipment.

    (2) which brings me to the stage. I have owned a pair of Sennheiser HD700s, so I know what a large soundstage is like, but the ER4XR wasn't nearly as "congested" as some people claim. The detail and separation of each instrument and sound is completely clear, and it's like you are onstage with the band, or inside the synthesizer. Sounds do go wide, and in different directions, it's all in how the track was mixed and mastered. More modern electronic music (like psychedelic trance / hi-tech) absolutely surround you with a landscape of sounds, and the ER4 keeps them all distinct and separate from each other.

    (3) I did not find the bass to be lacking, even coming from Beats. It is a much tighter, faster bass, with an almost 'liquid' quality to it. In the highest bpm music I have (~190) the basslines are so fast and defined it is almost ethereal. Ambient tracks with slower sinewave-like bass is full, thick and palpable. I have had physical sub-bass, especially in the slower ambient (e.g. Solar Fields). Classical, instrumental music is probably not quite as detailed as in the SR version, but feels more whole with the more present bass in strings and choirs. It is perfect for the Skyrim soundtrack, so it is perfect for me.

    (4) my one con with these IEMs are the fit. I have small ear canals, and back when I had Beats I benefited from using tri-flange silicone tips on them, so I figured these would work the same. The Ety tri-flanges, when the fit is right, sound the best to me. The foam tips, even when rolled tight I have trouble fitting them in my ears. After a few minutes of putting them in, out, in again I have a decent fit but I am constantly worried about the balance between left vs. right. WHEN I have a good fit, there is some discomfort since the bottom largest flange folds in on itself in each ear (I saw someone earlier in the thread with the same issue).
    I went and bought some off-brand bi-flange tips but they muddy the mids, so I went back to the stock tri-flanges.Even with all the trouble, these are totally worth the sound.

    Verdict: This is most likely that last headphone I will ever buy (until Etymotic comes out with the ER5, that is).
    Last edited: Jun 6, 2019
  10. SteveOliver
    @Schwarzschild Great first post. Welcome to contributing to the mad house that is Head-Fi :)
    Schwarzschild likes this.
  11. JenniferDylan
    I got a pair of ER4SR that I listen with at home but I am looking for something for when on the move so I am looking for a cheaper pair of etymotic like the ER2 and I have read a couple of pages in this thread and I am not sure what to pick. I do like the sound of my ER4SR but the XR line seems very popular so I am considering it. How do the ER2SE and ER2XR compare to the ER4SR in terms of the bass and clarity? I am horrible at reading graphs and so on so I am not sure what to make out of them, I know that the XR is the bassier version but maybe the ER2SE packs a tiny bit more bass than the ER4SR without sacrificing too much of the clarity for example?
  12. Schwarzschild
    I can't speak for the ER4SR version, but I have ER2XR and ER4XR (like you, ER2 for traveling), and based on what you're looking for I would go with the ER2SE version. Others have said also that because of the dynamic driver the ER2 (both of them) have a bit more low-end. The ER2XR has lots of bass, almost too much, and lacks the clarity and 'sparkle' in the highs that I love in the ER4XR. If you were to get the ER2XR I think you would be disappointed in the clarity that you love about the ER4SR.

    "maybe the ER2SE packs a tiny bit more bass than the ER4SR without sacrificing too much of the clarity for example?"

    This here I would agree with. I would go for the ER2SE.
    slapo likes this.
  13. panasonicst60
    Either Er3se or er2se would be a good fit for you. If u like the er4sr, the Er3se sounds nearly as good as the er4 series.
  14. rbf1138
    So would you say if someone was going to Etymotics you think the 2SE and 2XR would be good compliments? It seems the 4XR and 2XR would be just as good?
  15. Schwarzschild
    If one is new to Etymotic sound completely, and ER4's aren't an option, I would try for the ER3's. The ER2's dynamic driver, to me, is far away from the quick, clean, and precise signature that Etymotic is known for. They are experimental and fun IEMs, but don't hold a candle to the ER4 series in my opinion. I have both 2XR and 4XR, and choose the 4XR every time.
    rbf1138 likes this.
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