New AirPods 3rd Generation (2021)
Oct 27, 2021 at 4:09 AM Post #31 of 84

SparkOnShore

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I haven't listened to them back to back, so do take this with a grain of salt. From a technical standpoint, I would definitely agree and this would have me grabbing the APM more than I would the AP3. From a tonality standpoint, I like the additional brightness the AP3 gives you in the midrange and treble; though it does completely lack warmth (while the APM is kind of giving you all the warmth). As a rough setup right now, this is how I feel about the entire AirPods lineup:
  • Technical: APM > APP > AP3 > AP1
  • Tonal: APP > APM >= AP3 > AP1
I will admit that I tend to grab headphones with better technical aspects rather than tonal. And although the APM is kind of awkward tonally, there is something special about its tonal presentation being very laid back, warm, and inviting. It's something that's very easy to listen to and more or less non-fatiguing once everything is broken in.

Edit: take that back, as I listen to them more, the tonality of the AP3 rolls down below the APM.
So finally you believe that the tonal warmth of the APM is better to your ears than the AP3? Maybe the fuller presentation of frequencies on the APM is just beyond comparison I guess...
 
Oct 27, 2021 at 10:27 AM Post #32 of 84

tinyman392

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Apple was saying for the APP that they should be worn in a way so that the stem's bottom edge microphone is pointing the edge of one's mouth/lips. I guess same goes for the AP3 and this approach is what you call high angle of attack, because by rotating the stem upwards, driver's opening gets also closer to the ear canal.
Angle of attack diagram is from a top down view, rather than a side view, axis of rotation would be perpendicular to the ground.
So finally you believe that the tonal warmth of the APM is better to your ears than the AP3? Maybe the fuller presentation of frequencies on the APM is just beyond comparison I guess...
It might have been ear fatigue, but the AP3 is quite bright and midrange heavy. There's not much to really cut that.
 
Oct 27, 2021 at 12:02 PM Post #33 of 84

angelom

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It's closer to the APP than it is to how I remember the AP1. It sounds like the APP with a slight mid-bass focus (a little more punch/boom), but I haven't listened to my APP analytically in a while, so do take what I say with a grain of salt. It's also less warm and smooth than the APP as well. I still get a V-shaped signature to it, but not nearly as strong as I remember the AP1 while the APP has always sounded warm over neutral to my ears.

Wow! Some of your comments are contradictory... and the AP1 V-shaped??!
Angle of attack diagram is from a top down view, rather than a side view, axis of rotation would be perpendicular to the ground.

It might have been ear fatigue, but the AP3 is quite bright and midrange heavy. There's not much to really cut that.

So, is AP3 "V-shaped" or "midrange heavy"?? This is a contradiction.

I will saying this: If you're coming from the APM, the AP3 is clearly more bright, with more mids and treble presence and not having sufficient/'exciting' bass. If you're coming from AP3, the APM is bass heavy, with mids showing recession and veiled mids/highs.

I don't know the music you're listening for your opinions (the genres and the quality of the masters and/or recordings), but your comments of AP1/2, EP & AP3 are so different than how I hearing all this devices.
 
Oct 27, 2021 at 1:41 PM Post #34 of 84

tinyman392

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Wow! Some of your comments are contradictory... and the AP1 V-shaped??!


So, is AP3 "V-shaped" or "midrange heavy"?? This is a contradiction.

I will saying this: If you're coming from the APM, the AP3 is clearly more bright, with more mids and treble presence and not having sufficient/'exciting' bass. If you're coming from AP3, the APM is bass heavy, with mids showing recession and veiled mids/highs.

I don't know the music you're listening for your opinions (the genres and the quality of the masters and/or recordings), but your comments of AP1/2, EP & AP3 are so different than how I hearing all this devices.
We've gone back and forth on the AP1, they are V-shaped to my ears if I had them fit to my preference; I more or less shove the AP/EP as deep into my ear canal as they can go and they just rest there in a very stable fashion. My ears are smaller, so that may or may not help that work out. If I rotate about the stem so the front grill point away from my ear canal, the V-shape goes away and I hear them how you describe them. Like I said earlier, this is the reason why we hear the AP1 so differently, it's a matter of fit. This also explains why there are some measurements (I linked to them earlier) that show the AP1 having a large mid-bass while others have it without one. Fit with earbuds (well any headphone really) will affect how the headphone is perceived and measured. The same fit issues could also explain our differences with the EP as well though I can't seem to find my EP to confirm this.

V-shaped or midrange heavy... it's both; it's not quite as contradictory as you make it seem. A V-shape normally just points to a dip somewhere between the bass and the treble. You can still make something that sounds very midrange heavy doing this, namely by focusing heavily on the upper midrange, scooping out the lower midrange, and then giving a subtle boost (or no boost) to the bass while leveling out the treble to taper off. The V is not symmetrical in this case, the left (low) side is lower than the right (high) side. In other words, I hear a V-shape due to a subtle bass boost in the mid bass (probably around 5 dB give or take; it's not huge, but it's there) and a substantial upper midrange midrange boost which creates a V-shape with an upper-midrange focus creating a scoop in the lower midrange.

I will also note that Spatial Audio/Spatialize Stereo further's this V-shape by creating an almost boomy bass while just barely accentuating the upper midrange creating a more balanced V; Spatialize Stereo was on when I initially used my AP3 since that is my preferred setting on my APM. I shut it off at one point as well, I don't remember when. There is a chance that ear fatigue may have influenced my late night edit as well (I stated this though) since that also has a tendency to make things sound more upper midrange focused (and if something is already upper midrange focused, it makes it even worse from that perspective).

I do agree with you regarding the actual midrange balance of the APM and AP3, the APM scoops out the upper midrange and lower treble a bit much while the AP3 scoops out the lower midrange; they focus on opposite parts of the midrange spectrum. If you are coming from the APM, that will be polarizing. However, I've been listening to my Euclid and EVO more lately. The Euclid definitely has a slight V-shape tilt to it in a similar way to the AP3 (with respect to where the V is situated and how the bass is balanced) while the EVO is a warm sound signature (though some could rightfully also argue warm over neutral). Lately my APM have been used more in Zoom calls than they have for music, but I do put them on every so often for 15-30 minutes or so since they are in my rotation. I'm actually not coming from the APM (reason why the comparison was from memory; and a far memory at that since it's been a while since I listened without Spatialized Audio).

As for music preferences: rock, punk, alternative, acoustic versions of said rock and alternative, metal, pop, little bit of classical, a little bit of rap. My iPhone is generally on shuffle (so I get a bit of everything) using Apple Music 256 AAC. Fidelity won't increase with lossless due to BT (not that I could hear the difference wired).
 
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Oct 28, 2021 at 11:09 AM Post #35 of 84

angelom

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Here is somebody comparing 3 songs using AP2, AP3 and APP. The music comparison starting at 6:30
 
Oct 28, 2021 at 11:33 AM Post #36 of 84

3Putter

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OK, thanks for the response.
For running I need an open design, so I can hear my surroundings and also avoid the bumps in my head for each step.
And my AP1's batteries are worn out and will drop off after 15 minutes in one side, so I guess this new update arrived just at the right time.
Transparency mode on the APP would help with your needs for hearing the outside world while running.
 
Oct 28, 2021 at 11:56 AM Post #37 of 84

rasmushorn

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Transparency mode on the APP would help with your needs for hearing the outside world while running.
Transparancy mode on my APP is not enough for what I need. They are still a closed design. APP will let me hear traffic etc. but since I am running in the forrest / countryside it is not traffic I want to hear / not hear. I only want to avoid the bumps inside the ear for each step I take. For that, an open construction is far better than a closed and I always preferred the AP1 for running. Even on treadmills I prefer the AP1 even though the ANC is good for excluding the constant noise. I have ordered the AP3s now, so I can see if they are as open as I am hoping they are :)
 
Oct 28, 2021 at 12:15 PM Post #38 of 84

tinyman392

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Transparancy mode on my APP is not enough for what I need. They are still a closed design. APP will let me hear traffic etc. but since I am running in the forrest / countryside it is not traffic I want to hear / not hear. I only want to avoid the bumps inside the ear for each step I take. For that, an open construction is far better than a closed and I always preferred the AP1 for running. Even on treadmills I prefer the AP1 even though the ANC is good for excluding the constant noise. I have ordered the AP3s now, so I can see if they are as open as I am hoping they are :)
Transparency mode (when there is no music playing) what's piped back to you is absurdly close to what you would hear if you had no headphones on at all. Realistically, with transparency on, the only thing that causes the headphones to isolate at this point would be the music that is playing. If I'm walking through a grocery store, in the woods, etc. with the APP on transparency with no music playing, it sounds as if I don't have the APP on at all. The only exception to this is if your ANC is acting up due to the little silent "recall" Apple did which affects models produced before October 2020 which causes AdaptiveEQ and the internal ANC to go haywire which would have it not piping in the correct sound and canceling out noise that doesn't exist.

I personally haven't had any real issues with microphonics with the APP including foot steps. Though everyone does run differently and I can believe that the ANC system would not cancel out everyone's footsteps. Do note, however, that if you are using a model that has that same "recall" issue, then that will also affect the footstep performance as that is canceled out through the internal ANC system that the APP have (which go haywire).

The AP3 is definitely an open system, it isolates very weakly which is a good thing for your use. If you have the AP3 situated with the grill closer to the ear canal, it can have a tendency to slightly amplify higher frequency noise both external and internal (like your breathing). This slight amplification goes away if you situate the AirPods further away from the ear canal. I used the term angle of attack to describe further/closer to the ear canal, though I feel like toe in/toe out would be a more universal term.
 
Oct 28, 2021 at 12:21 PM Post #39 of 84

3Putter

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Transparency mode (when there is no music playing) what's piped back to you is absurdly close to what you would hear if you had no headphones on at all. Realistically, with transparency on, the only thing that causes the headphones to isolate at this point would be the music that is playing. If I'm walking through a grocery store, in the woods, etc. with the APP on transparency with no music playing, it sounds as if I don't have the APP on at all. The only exception to this is if your ANC is acting up due to the little silent "recall" Apple did which affects models produced before October 2020 which causes AdaptiveEQ and the internal ANC to go haywire which would have it not piping in the correct sound and canceling out noise that doesn't exist.

I personally haven't had any real issues with microphonics with the APP including foot steps. Though everyone does run differently and I can believe that the ANC system would not cancel out everyone's footsteps. Do note, however, that if you are using a model that has that same "recall" issue, then that will also affect the footstep performance as that is canceled out through the internal ANC system that the APP have (which go haywire).

The AP3 is definitely an open system, it isolates very weakly which is a good thing for your use. If you have the AP3 situated with the grill closer to the ear canal, it can have a tendency to slightly amplify higher frequency noise both external and internal (like your breathing). This slight amplification goes away if you situate the AirPods further away from the ear canal. I used the term angle of attack to describe further/closer to the ear canal, though I feel like toe in/toe out would be a more universal term.
I find it really interesting how each of us experiences sound and performance differently to varying degrees. I enjoy running with ANC on. If I were concerned with something in the woods the last thing I'd have is any IEM in my ear. But we're all different. I really like my APP but it took some getting used to them before I kept them in my pocket for daily use.
 
Oct 28, 2021 at 12:37 PM Post #40 of 84

angelom

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Transparancy mode on my APP is not enough for what I need. They are still a closed design. APP will let me hear traffic etc. but since I am running in the forrest / countryside it is not traffic I want to hear / not hear. I only want to avoid the bumps inside the ear for each step I take. For that, an open construction is far better than a closed and I always preferred the AP1 for running. Even on treadmills I prefer the AP1 even though the ANC is good for excluding the constant noise. I have ordered the AP3s now, so I can see if they are as open as I am hoping they are :)

If you are happy with AP1 or AP2, you will be very happy with AP3 in respect of the problem you having.

I personally haven't had any real issues with microphonics with the APP including foot steps. Though everyone does run differently and I can believe that the ANC system would not cancel out everyone's footsteps.

Microphonics is normally referring about the noise that is transmitting to the body from the cables of IEMs, some cables are very microphonic, others aren't. For the problem of hearing footsteps when wearing earphones the name is "bone conduction", and this is typical of earphones that go inside the ears (IEMs), with the exception of Etymotics because they go more deep and bone conduction isn't happening in this area, but Etymotic earphones are having other fit problems for many people.
 
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Oct 28, 2021 at 12:51 PM Post #41 of 84

tinyman392

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I find it really interesting how each of us experiences sound and performance differently to varying degrees. I enjoy running with ANC on. If I were concerned with something in the woods the last thing I'd have is any IEM in my ear. But we're all different. I really like my APP but it took some getting used to them before I kept them in my pocket for daily use.
I tend to find that if I'm listening to music, I tend to tune out the world around me anyways (or at least try to) even if there is stuff leaking in. Due to that, if I do need to be alert, I turn off the music temporarily. The transparency features of the APP really did stun me as it was the first setup I had where the transparency feature sounded just like it did if I didn't have the headphones in. Majority of other setups kind of amplified (unevenly) the sound around me in a way that never sounded stereo, though a lot of manufacturers are getting better at the sounding stereo part.

Microphonics is normally referring about the noise that is transmitting to the body from the cables of IEMs, some cables are very microphonic, others aren't. For the problem of hearing footsteps when wearing earphones the name is "bone conduction".
That is probably a better term for it.
 
Oct 28, 2021 at 1:23 PM Post #42 of 84

rasmushorn

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Transparency mode (when there is no music playing) what's piped back to you is absurdly close to what you would hear if you had no headphones on at all. Realistically, with transparency on, the only thing that causes the headphones to isolate at this point would be the music that is playing. If I'm walking through a grocery store, in the woods, etc. with the APP on transparency with no music playing, it sounds as if I don't have the APP on at all. The only exception to this is if your ANC is acting up due to the little silent "recall" Apple did which affects models produced before October 2020 which causes AdaptiveEQ and the internal ANC to go haywire which would have it not piping in the correct sound and canceling out noise that doesn't exist.
Yeah, I have the same experience as you when walking around. With walking I have no issues and I really enjoy the APP for that and then when nearing a road with much traffic just turn the ANC on and keep the silence.

I had the first APP with the ANC-feedback/crackling sound issue in both sides and had them replaced with the latest version. Since then I have not had those issues.

I personally haven't had any real issues with microphonics with the APP including foot steps. Though everyone does run differently and I can believe that the ANC system would not cancel out everyone's footsteps. Do note, however, that if you are using a model that has that same "recall" issue, then that will also affect the footstep performance as that is canceled out through the internal ANC system that the APP have (which go haywire).

The AP3 is definitely an open system, it isolates very weakly which is a good thing for your use. If you have the AP3 situated with the grill closer to the ear canal, it can have a tendency to slightly amplify higher frequency noise both external and internal (like your breathing). This slight amplification goes away if you situate the AirPods further away from the ear canal. I used the term angle of attack to describe further/closer to the ear canal, though I feel like toe in/toe out would be a more universal term.
I think that my problem is caused by my running style, where I always use "barefoot"-shoes with no cushioning. That means that I use my feet and legs to bounce and take the energy from each landing and therefore probably experience the bumps in my skull more than most other people. I would not call it microphonics because it is not caused by the APP rubbing on my ears but simply the bone conducted bumps in the skull and ears.

I am looking forward to experimenting with the placement and feeling the wearing comfort. I just hope they sit tight like the former versions. I have never had any issues placing either of them them in the ears and totally forgetting that they are sitting there for longer workouts. Also the sweat and water resistance is a much welcome feature for this use I think.
 
Oct 28, 2021 at 1:31 PM Post #43 of 84

rasmushorn

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I find it really interesting how each of us experiences sound and performance differently to varying degrees. I enjoy running with ANC on. If I were concerned with something in the woods the last thing I'd have is any IEM in my ear. But we're all different. I really like my APP but it took some getting used to them before I kept them in my pocket for daily use.
I also only used my AP1 for running because of the bone conducting bumps in APP. For all other purposes APP is better. Upgrading to the AP3 is only because my old AP1 is dropping out constantly. I got them in the very first batch when they first came out and have enjoyed them for their convenience many times. Since I got the APP I never used them for anything but the running.

Actually, one thing I enjoyed with AP1 was that you can fast forward to next track and activate SIRI by single-, double-, or tripple-tapping one of the sides. I like that better than the APP's buttons, which are not that easy to operate when running.
 
Oct 28, 2021 at 2:04 PM Post #44 of 84

tinyman392

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I also only used my AP1 for running because of the bone conducting bumps in APP. For all other purposes APP is better. Upgrading to the AP3 is only because my old AP1 is dropping out constantly. I got them in the very first batch when they first came out and have enjoyed them for their convenience many times. Since I got the APP I never used them for anything but the running.

Actually, one thing I enjoyed with AP1 was that you can fast forward to next track and activate SIRI by single-, double-, or tripple-tapping one of the sides. I like that better than the APP's buttons, which are not that easy to operate when running.
I'm honestly surprised your AP1 lasted you this long. My AP1 barely made it a year and a half before needing a battery replacement, they would barely last 30 minutes on a call and maybe 60-90 minutes for music (though I kind of abandoned them for music at that point).

___

One thing I will note is that I'm still on Big Sur and the AP3 do auto connect to my laptop and auto switch to it as well.
 
Oct 28, 2021 at 2:07 PM Post #45 of 84

angelom

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Actually, one thing I enjoyed with AP1 was that you can fast forward to next track and activate SIRI by single-, double-, or tripple-tapping one of the sides. I like that better than the APP's buttons, which are not that easy to operate when running.

Is interesting the experience of every person. I buying the AP1 the day of releasing 5 years ago (when everybody is laughing about the design) and I loving instantly the convenience and comfort (you feeling nothing in your ears only 2 minutes after you wearing this earphones!). I using the AP1 and the AP2 every day since the day of releasing. I saying before that the AP1 is a genius device from Apple. Is funny how very quickly the AP1 selling so much.

Similar like you, for me tapping the earphones is a great feature in AP1/2 because in my case (podcasts & calls 95% of the time and 5% videos and films) tapping for pause/play or answering/ending a call is fantastic (I don't using Siri), and sometimes my hands are wet or sticky or little dirty because I'm eating something or cooking or washing something and the quick tapping with alternative finger is great. So, I understand your comment.

But what is nice now with AP3 is #1 the fact I can now listening to music too and really enjoying the sound. The AP3 really is having a very correct and clean sound for ALL genres. So now for me having more playback controls is great (next and previous track features is now important for me). Now for films too you having spatial audio that is great experience in Netflix and HBO, and then we having more battery life in the earphones and the case. AND the case is working really great with the MagSafe wireless charger (instant positioning of the case because of the magnets...little great things like this...)
 
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