Multi-IEM Review - 352 IEMs compared (Pump Audio Earphones added 04/03/16 p. 1106)
Aug 1, 2013 at 9:35 AM Post #11,086 of 16,915

Chude Mleko

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Hi Joker,
 
Great reviews, I'm really impressed and inspired by your work.
 
My experiences:
I got Xears Nature N3i a good while ago following your reviews. I enjoyed them for some 8-9 months but they broke (cable issue) and were replaced with same model. In a meantime I ordered Xears Amazing A330M and I was disappointed with them hugely so I send them back for another pair of Xears Nature N3i. First (second really) pair broke after 7 months but Xears refused to replace them.
I got MEElectronics A161P again following good reviews and I enjoyed them even more until they broke (cable again). New pair is on a way as MEElectronics accepted guarantee claim.
While A161P was not working I was using N3i but they broke as well (third pair) (this time looks like a driver.)
 
I'm very disappointed with Xears quality and customer service. I'm happy with MEE customer service.
I wonder if all earphones have to brake under 12 month if are used day in day out? That way they are not really good value for money. Especially when I think my stock Sony Ericsson earphones are still going well after maybe 2 years of usage.
 
To the point:
I very much like A161P sound but I can imagine they could be better. I think they are missing some air or space or whatever you want to call it.
N3i sounds OK but have a too much bass and not enough mid to my liking.
I've just ordered VSonic GR06 hoping they will be close to A161P.
 
What else would you recommend I try? I'm only learning about my sound signature preference but what I know for sure is I don't like when bass or high tones are exaggerated. I do enjoy bass though, I do listen to bass centric stuff like Marcus Miller, Primus or Bill Laswell. I listen to jazz mostly but some rock / metal as well.
 
Sorry for long and messy message. I hope you'll give me some tips / recommendations anyway!
 
Keep the good work!
 
Mleko
 
Aug 1, 2013 at 9:56 AM Post #11,087 of 16,915

mangatmodi

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@RochRx7

I am very tight on budget and both UE500 and U600 costs almost same, around 100$ each in all the offline and online stores in India. Headphones are extremely costly in India as they are assumed to be a luxury commodity, very high taxes and import duty. I am really dying to own both, but currently I can choose only one of them. So Any Idea which will be better pick for my taste. Which one will give better sound if we combine scores from both bass and treble performance.
 
Aug 1, 2013 at 10:09 AM Post #11,088 of 16,915

ALuckyChance

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Hey ljokerl, another new poster here. I'm looking for an IEM less than $25 that has as good a soundstage and depth/width as I can get for such a budget price. I'm not a basshead or anything (though I guess I don't mind a bit of punch to my lower frequencies), and I dislike harsh or overly exaggerated treble.
 
For reference: My first step into portable headphones was a pair of Koss KSC-75 clip-ons, which I liked except for the somewhat fatiguing and shrill highs. I later tried the Monoprice 8320s and really didn't like them - the sound was wide but it had a huge lack of depth or detail to my ears. 
 
Aug 1, 2013 at 10:29 AM Post #11,089 of 16,915

RochRx7

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@ALuckyChance
Check out his review on Soundmagic PL30 (older version) and E30 (new version) It's what you're looking for in that price range/sound preference.
 
@mangatmodi
What genre takes up more of your listening time? My personal vote would be the UE600.. but that's because a lot of my weight in points is for the better accuracy/detail/style/vocal presentation and SOUNDSTAGE! :)
 
Aug 1, 2013 at 11:20 AM Post #11,090 of 16,915

mangatmodi

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@ RochRx7

I listen Classical rock, specifically Led Zeppelin and Jimmi Hendrix. Just wondering which one is worst? Bass amount in UE600 or Treble in UE500? If Bass in UE600 is enjoyable, I would go for it as I am not much bass-headed, I just want bass to be there in the music as the original one. Led Zeppelin is a great rock band but they do have some great bass work in their songs
 
Aug 1, 2013 at 11:55 PM Post #11,091 of 16,915

suman134

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Quote:
@ljokerl

Sir, I need your opinion on the following as you are the one who has listened to both Ultimate Ears 500 & 600.

I like both Rap (Eminem) and classical rock(Led Zepp, Nirvana) equally. After reading your reviews, I am unable to decide between these two.

I would like clear guitar riffs which is better in UE600 but I am worried to miss deep bass beats in Rap songs (Which I believe will be better in UE500). As I understand that bass is extremely low in UE600 where UE500 still manages to do ok in highs. Should I go for UE500 or UE600? Which will be a better trade-off?

I am also worried about cable durability on UE500 as pointed by many head-fiers here, I broke my she3590 and soundmagic es-18 recently. How is the build quality of UE500 compared to these two? Should taping a duct tape at the jack-wire joint will solve the issue?

Thanks in advance...

PS: I am sticking with UE because this is the only decent headphone brand available in India with good after sales service. You won't find shure, Hifi-man etc. here.
frown.gif

 
        man get the ue600 , its got enough bass and ue500 wont blow you out of the water , xb90ex can but wont blow your brains out .
     all the ue's have bad build quality bar ue350/200/900 , 700 was a bad day for me , 600 needs some care too , and ue500 dont build much confidence , but the 500 is the strongest of these three . my ue500 is still going good for last 12 months , just take a bit more care of them . earpiece build quality is not upto the mark too .
 
to avoid the jack wire issue , keep it at 0 degree with your device , and dont pull the wire while disconnecting .
 
brother ( i will get my name in voter list as soon as 2014 ) , try the xb90ex at a sony store . auditions wont cost any thing , reach out to your nearest sony center and ask them if you can have a go at them . xb90ex doesnt have the awesome clarity of ue600 but overall it can beat the ue500 imo . im not a bass fan , but man this xb90ex goes deep , as deep as hell .
 
Aug 1, 2013 at 11:57 PM Post #11,092 of 16,915

suman134

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Quote:
@RochRx7

I am very tight on budget and both UE500 and U600 costs almost same, around 100$ each in all the offline and online stores in India. Headphones are extremely costly in India as they are assumed to be a luxury commodity, very high taxes and import duty. I am really dying to own both, but currently I can choose only one of them. So Any Idea which will be better pick for my taste. Which one will give better sound if we combine scores from both bass and treble performance.


       grab it from grabmore.com , may be under 4800rs .
 
Aug 2, 2013 at 12:07 AM Post #11,093 of 16,915

suman134

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Quote:
Hey ljokerl, another new poster here. I'm looking for an IEM less than $25 that has as good a soundstage and depth/width as I can get for such a budget price. I'm not a basshead or anything (though I guess I don't mind a bit of punch to my lower frequencies), and I dislike harsh or overly exaggerated treble.
 
For reference: My first step into portable headphones was a pair of Koss KSC-75 clip-ons, which I liked except for the somewhat fatiguing and shrill highs. I later tried the Monoprice 8320s and really didn't like them - the sound was wide but it had a huge lack of depth or detail to my ears. 


       if you are not a bass huger , try the panas for a change , the hje-355 will suit you , and the cw31 from meelec will do too , if you want your bass to kick in at times and can give up the treble spark get the e30 ( i hate the e30 just becuz it lacks the treble spark ) . sadly your are on a tighter budget .
 
Aug 2, 2013 at 12:55 AM Post #11,094 of 16,915

ljokerl

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Quote:
Great review of the Lime Ears offerings; I especially enjoyed the comparisons.  It's always a positive thing to see detailed CIEM reviews.
 
Though I note at the asking price it would be up against Alclair's RSM 4 driver model, not the Reference.  Against Clear Tunes it competes directly with the 5 driver CT-500 (my daily driver for a good many months).

 
Thanks!
 
Unfortunately I don't have the RSM or the CT-500 yet. I had an early (pre-production, I think) RSM for a little while but sent it back for a treble re-tune and never got i back
redface.gif
. It was competitive with the Lime Ears except for the treble, which was a little harsh, as with the 3-driver Reference. 
 
The reason for comparing to models priced lower (and higher) is for perspective. I also try to find approximate signature matches so that the comparisons are potentially useful to someone making a buying decision. A comparison between the Lime Ears and Spiral Ear SE-3, for example, won't do much good as they sound quite different. 
 
Quote:
@ljokerl

Sir, I need your opinion on the following as you are the one who has listened to both Ultimate Ears 500 & 600.

I like both Rap (Eminem) and classical rock(Led Zepp, Nirvana) equally. After reading your reviews, I am unable to decide between these two.

I would like clear guitar riffs which is better in UE600 but I am worried to miss deep bass beats in Rap songs (Which I believe will be better in UE500). As I understand that bass is extremely low in UE600 where UE500 still manages to do ok in highs. Should I go for UE500 or UE600? Which will be a better trade-off?

I am also worried about cable durability on UE500 as pointed by many head-fiers here, I broke my she3590 and soundmagic es-18 recently. How is the build quality of UE500 compared to these two? Should taping a duct tape at the jack-wire joint will solve the issue?

Thanks in advance...

PS: I am sticking with UE because this is the only decent headphone brand available in India with good after sales service. You won't find shure, Hifi-man etc. here.
frown.gif

 
I think the UE500 is the safe choice here (for sound, not construction). The clarity, detail, etc really aren't that bad and you won't find the bass lacking coming from the SHE3590 (which has quite a bit of bass). Build quality is pretty average with all of these UEs - not sure how to fix the issue with the jack. Maybe some heatshrink as a preemptive measure - duct tape might void UE warranty. 
 
I'm surprised Shure is not more widely available in India. That's unfortunate as the SE215 would suit you well. 
 
Quote:
Hi Joker,
 
Great reviews, I'm really impressed and inspired by your work.
 
My experiences:
I got Xears Nature N3i a good while ago following your reviews. I enjoyed them for some 8-9 months but they broke (cable issue) and were replaced with same model. In a meantime I ordered Xears Amazing A330M and I was disappointed with them hugely so I send them back for another pair of Xears Nature N3i. First (second really) pair broke after 7 months but Xears refused to replace them.
I got MEElectronics A161P again following good reviews and I enjoyed them even more until they broke (cable again). New pair is on a way as MEElectronics accepted guarantee claim.
While A161P was not working I was using N3i but they broke as well (third pair) (this time looks like a driver.)
 
I'm very disappointed with Xears quality and customer service. I'm happy with MEE customer service.
I wonder if all earphones have to brake under 12 month if are used day in day out? That way they are not really good value for money. Especially when I think my stock Sony Ericsson earphones are still going well after maybe 2 years of usage.
 
To the point:
I very much like A161P sound but I can imagine they could be better. I think they are missing some air or space or whatever you want to call it.
N3i sounds OK but have a too much bass and not enough mid to my liking.
I've just ordered VSonic GR06 hoping they will be close to A161P.
 
What else would you recommend I try? I'm only learning about my sound signature preference but what I know for sure is I don't like when bass or high tones are exaggerated. I do enjoy bass though, I do listen to bass centric stuff like Marcus Miller, Primus or Bill Laswell. I listen to jazz mostly but some rock / metal as well.
 
Sorry for long and messy message. I hope you'll give me some tips / recommendations anyway!
 
Keep the good work!
 
Mleko

 
I think after the A161P the GR06 might sound a bit congested but who knows, you may like it. If not, try the LG Quadbeat. Bass is somewhere between the N3i and A161P in quantity but more importantly it's got a wide sound that makes even the A161P sound a little closed-in. I think you might like it, and it's cheap enough to replace should anything go wrong. 
 
Quote:
Hey ljokerl, another new poster here. I'm looking for an IEM less than $25 that has as good a soundstage and depth/width as I can get for such a budget price. I'm not a basshead or anything (though I guess I don't mind a bit of punch to my lower frequencies), and I dislike harsh or overly exaggerated treble.
 
For reference: My first step into portable headphones was a pair of Koss KSC-75 clip-ons, which I liked except for the somewhat fatiguing and shrill highs. I later tried the Monoprice 8320s and really didn't like them - the sound was wide but it had a huge lack of depth or detail to my ears. 

 
All of the good stuff will probably run closer to $35 - the Sony MH1C, Soundmagic E10/E30, and even VSonic GR99. With a hard $25 limit I would just go for the Philips SHE3580. It's not as wide-sounding as the 8320 but it's more well-rounded. 
 
Aug 2, 2013 at 1:39 AM Post #11,095 of 16,915

suman134

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Quote:
 
I'm surprised Shure is not more widely available in India. That's unfortunate as the SE215 would suit you well. 
 

         man shure's prices out here are breath taking , $150+ for se215 .
 
Aug 2, 2013 at 7:36 AM Post #11,096 of 16,915

mangatmodi

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@ suman134
xb90ex looks good in reviews and they are way cheaper than UE500. I will try them out, however where did you found sure headphones in India? I could not find them anywhere online. The ones on ebay, naaptol are imports by people, so no warranty in India. Risky deals. Shures are never official launched in India. (Offtopic: Good you are getting voter id, vote carefully to eliminate all corrupt leaders, otherwise headphones could have been lot cheaper in India.)

@ljokerl
Really its very frustrating for all music lovers in India. I will try xb90x once and decide. I am more inclined towards UE600 as I want to try BA once.

PS: I will not be available for a week. I will catch the discussion later
 
Aug 2, 2013 at 12:48 PM Post #11,097 of 16,915

suman134

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Quote:
@ suman134
xb90ex looks good in reviews and they are way cheaper than UE500. I will try them out, however where did you found sure headphones in India? I could not find them anywhere online. The ones on ebay, naaptol are imports by people, so no warranty in India. Risky deals. Shures are never official launched in India. (Offtopic: Good you are getting voter id, vote carefully to eliminate all corrupt leaders, otherwise headphones could have been lot cheaper in India.)

@ljokerl
Really its very frustrating for all music lovers in India. I will try xb90x once and decide. I am more inclined towards UE600 as I want to try BA once.

PS: I will not be available for a week. I will catch the discussion later

 
      man in getting kind of green card , will vote wisely never the less , yes shures were never lunched in india , snapdeal have them for sale with cod , i like the se210 over the se215 but yes they have the risk . and man get the ba , a ba any day over a midrange dynamic . even a pl50/she9850 will do , cc51 will rock , ue600 will rule .
 
Aug 2, 2013 at 7:29 PM Post #11,099 of 16,915

ljokerl

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Quote:
         man shure's prices out here are breath taking , $150+ for se215 .

 
Ouch. I guess it makes sense if there's no official distribution. 
 
Aug 2, 2013 at 10:27 PM Post #11,100 of 16,915

Joe Bloggs

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@ suman134
xb90ex looks good in reviews and they are way cheaper than UE500. I will try them out, however where did you found sure headphones in India? I could not find them anywhere online. The ones on ebay, naaptol are imports by people, so no warranty in India. Risky deals. Shures are never official launched in India. (Offtopic: Good you are getting voter id, vote carefully to eliminate all corrupt leaders, otherwise headphones could have been lot cheaper in India.)

@ljokerl
Really its very frustrating for all music lovers in India. I will try xb90x once and decide. I am more inclined towards UE600 as I want to try BA once.

PS: I will not be available for a week. I will catch the discussion later


Is your player an iDevice or a rooted android phone by any chance? You could get the UE600 and accudio for iDevices and have it simulate many many different earphones for you :D (ue500 unfortunately not included) Or you could get Viper4Android and ask me to make a ue600 to ue500 filter for you :D
 

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