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Looking for Alternatives to IE800

  1. Katruje

    I'm new to the forums, and just started getting serious about headphones and DACs. I've had a pair of HD438s and an original Nuforce uDAC for the better part of a decade now, and I've just become disenchanted up with the quality of the setup.

    So I bought a a pair of 1More Triple Drivers (ugh) and then IE800's (not bad), but neither are really getting me where i want to be.

    So, the 1More's are just way fat and warm. Good detail, though. Not enough high end for my liking. To a 20-year old me, the IE800's may have been perfect, but as I get older, I'm less interested in reference; I want a bit more involvement. I'm listening to more electronic music, and want a bit more in the low end. But, I wouldn't call myself a basshead, by any means. No bloated, artificial bass for me, please.

    I gambled and ordered the JDS Labs The Element unheard because it looks so much sexier than the Mojo. Right now I'm listening to the Massdrop K7XX through the uDAC, and it's not too bad, but again, there's just something 'missing'. I've got the HD6XX on order, so I can A/B the two brands I know best and begin this journey of finding the perfect (for me) setup.

    So...to start, any advice on a good alternative to the IE800's that will give me that 'slight V' sound with a bit more low end warmth?
    Last edited: Feb 3, 2018
  2. Katruje
    Wife and I have spent the evening listening and comparing the K7XX and the IE800. Both headphones are performing well, rediscovering our favorite music. IE800's are definitely warmer than the AKGs. Really wish I could get some foam tips for the 800's.
  3. Redcarmoose
    No doubt get to listen to a pair of Sony XBA-Z5 IEMs. The included cables are a pain, but many have switched to aftermarket cables. There is also a little bit of a fit issue. They are not going to be a smooth fit like the Triples, but you will gain definition in both the highs and the low end. They are perfect for electronic music (maybe the best?) They also go to a new level with a balanced cable and source, to the point that you may just like them single ended, but fall in love with them balanced.

    The bass in some of the new Yello releases is a completely different experience than any IEM, maybe how the Z5s do echo? Both room ambience and electronic echo have this signature delay that’s natural and delineated.

    They are an aging flagship that has many followers but you don’t read many reviews about them. Many of the 1Z and 1A owners talk about them and use them not just for their Walkmans, but in home rigs. They may be perfect from the equipment you currently own, though I’m not familiar with your gear. Try em single ended you may be satisfied using home equipment. They were $700 at the start though now as low as $500 new. Don’t buy em used, due to the MMCX connectors.
    Last edited: Feb 3, 2018
    Katruje likes this.

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