Reviews of IEMS and Drivers in IEMS
Oct 18, 2016 at 9:57 AM Thread Starter Post #1 of 24

ytsu12

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What really is the limit on drivers in IEMS, does more drivers mean better sound? I am wanting to order the Zeus-R but is it really worth +$1000 more than the Noble K10, Rhapsodio Solar, 64 Ears A12/A10, once I add the configuration options, I want to, to make it look unique?
 
Oct 18, 2016 at 11:10 AM Post #3 of 24

GRUMPYOLDGUY

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This is kind of a cop out answer... But things are worth the price people are willing to pay. Those IEMs are priced the way they are because people are willing to pay it. Price is not a performance metric.

Why do you want to buy the Zeus R? Does it check off all the boxes for what you're looking for? Then yes, it's worth it.
 
Oct 18, 2016 at 11:38 AM Post #4 of 24

ytsu12

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This is kind of a cop out answer... But things are worth the price people are willing to pay. Those IEMs are priced the way they are because people are willing to pay it. Price is not a performance metric.

Why do you want to buy the Zeus R? Does it check off all the boxes for what you're looking for? Then yes, it's worth it.

 
All of the IEMS I just listed, offer everything I need, and all have amazing reviews however most of these reviews are filled with audio myths and just voodo cable talk, aswell as other things that just doesnt quantify the sound quality of these products, so it has been pretty difficult for me to choose one that would work well for me, since I havent been able to find one review with actual data and graphs of the sound that comes out of these IEMS. Most reviews say they sound surgical, analytical, warm, fast, slow, blah blah blah, like What does that even mean?
 
Oct 18, 2016 at 11:43 AM Post #5 of 24

GRUMPYOLDGUY

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All of the IEMS I just listed, offer everything I need, and all have amazing reviews however most of these reviews are filled with audio myths and just voodo cable talk, aswell as other things that just doesnt quantify the sound quality of these products, so it has been pretty difficult for me to choose one that would work well for me, since I havent been able to find one review with actual data and graphs of the sound that comes out of these IEMS. Most reviews say they sound surgical, analytical, warm, fast, slow, blah blah blah, like What does that even mean?


What questions do you specifically have? People around here (sound science) are pretty good at understanding and explaining performance. However "what sounds the best" is a subjective question that can only be answered with opinion.
 
Oct 18, 2016 at 11:46 AM Post #6 of 24

ytsu12

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What questions do you specifically have? People around here (sound science) are pretty good at understanding and explaining performance. However "what sounds the best" is a subjective question that can only be answered with opinion.

 
I guess what my question is, is which one of these IEMS is the highest fidelity, what I mean by that is its definition, which one of these will provide sound truest to its source without alteration. And what sounds best I do not think is subjective as it can be measured, yes adding alterations to a source can make it sound better to some, but by asking the question which is best, I think most usually means which is the most transparent and allows unaltered listening of the source music.
 
Oct 18, 2016 at 12:42 PM Post #7 of 24

GRUMPYOLDGUY

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I guess what my question is, is which one of these IEMS is the highest fidelity, what I mean by that is its definition, which one of these will provide sound truest to its source without alteration. And what sounds best I do not think is subjective as it can be measured, yes adding alterations to a source can make it sound better to some, but by asking the question which is best, I think most usually means which is the most transparent and allows unaltered listening of the source music.

 
It's not so easy to determine which IEMs most accurately reproduce the sound with no alterations. Well, it might be, but nobody really does that kind of test... You could couple the IEMs to a microphone and cross-correlate with the contents of the file... 
 
If you're talking about least alteration from a device perspective, you'll want the IEM with the flattest frequency response and best spurious performance. Or at least one where the FR can be reasonably EQed to flat.  
 
Beyond that, you're talking about finding the inverse of the transfer function for your own ears and applying it to the system... This is not trivial by any means, and not something anyone here can probably answer. 
 
Oct 18, 2016 at 1:12 PM Post #8 of 24

ytsu12

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It's not so easy to determine which IEMs most accurately reproduce the sound with no alterations. Well, it might be, but nobody really does that kind of test... You could couple the IEMs to a microphone and cross-correlate with the contents of the file... 
 
If you're talking about least alteration from a device perspective, you'll want the IEM with the flattest frequency response and best spurious performance. Or at least one where the FR can be reasonably EQed to flat.  
 
Beyond that, you're talking about finding the inverse of the transfer function for your own ears and applying it to the system... This is not trivial by any means, and not something anyone here can probably answer. 

Oh ok, well thanks for the help!
 
Oct 18, 2016 at 2:05 PM Post #9 of 24

castleofargh

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marketing arguments are about irrelevant aspects of the IEM. like how many drivers they use but never a word about the impedance variations from the crossovers or the possible consequences(and trust me they are not all positive ones).
 
my very personal and subjective opinion is that people should not put more than 500$ into a pair of IEM without knowing for sure what it does and how it sounds. but of course some people are more adventurous than others or simply rich enough not to care.
 
Oct 18, 2016 at 2:17 PM Post #10 of 24

ytsu12

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  marketing arguments are about irrelevant aspects of the IEM. like how many drivers they use but never a word about the impedance variations from the crossovers or the possible consequences(and trust me they are not all positive ones).
 
my very personal and subjective opinion is that people should not put more than 500$ into a pair of IEM without knowing for sure what it does and how it sounds. but of course some people are more adventurous than others or simply rich enough not to care.

Huh ok, thanks for the insight!
 
Nov 28, 2016 at 11:14 PM Post #13 of 24

TheoS53

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I'm a bit late to the party...but here are my thoughts:

I was recently in the market for some IEMs, and eventually settled on the Pinnacle P1. I had previously had the M6 Pro which I still use when I go cycling, and I was so damn impressed with the bang for buck value that I simply couldn't help myself but to be intrigued by the P1. 

The P1 has some incredibly good reviews, and at the end of the day I'm super glad I got them. I will say this though, they are rather bright, but they are incredibly detailed. Swap out the stock tips for some Sony Hybrids or Spinfits, and the sound is (IMHO) perfect. Seriously, the sound so damn good and there is just so much value crammed into the relatively low price.

I'm the type of person who spends countless hours doing research before I buy pretty much anything....and I NEVER "upgrade" unless I can genuinely see/hear the upgrade as an objective improvement. As such, when I was looking for headphones, I settled on the M40X. Of course, the M50X is more popular, but I crave for a balanced, neutral sound signature, whereas the M50X is widely accepted to have more of a v-shape signature. I eventually stumbled upon Sonic Sense Pro Audio on Youtube. These guys are pretty awesome, and the record the sound coming from headphones so you can hear what they sound like relative to one another, as well as relative to a source track. I genuinely, honestly couldn't tell a damn bit of difference between the recording of the M40X and the source track. That, to me, is sheer accuracy. 

So when the time came to get some IEMs, I knew that's the sound signature I wanted. After swapping out the stock tips on the P1 for some Sony Hybrids, the signature was considerably more in line with that of the M40X, and I'm hoping that the Spinfits will provide that extra last little bit of refinement. 

Now, to weigh in on your question about whether or not more drivers are better, I'd say absolutely not. I compared the P1 to the Westone UmPro 50 (5 drivers), and was genuinely shocked at how veiled and dark it sounded in comparison to the P1...especially considering the price difference. 

To be perfectly frank, the whole idea of multiple drivers is inherently flawed to me. Keep in mind that I'm no sound engineer or anything like that, so I'm totally open to suggestions and corrections, but this is my rationale behind my view:

If you look at the frequency graph of a song, you'll see that it's 1 continuous wave that has many different amplitudes etc. So the reason I feel that multiple drivers systems are flawed is because the whole idea behind them is to split the sound up so that each driver produces a different part of the frequency spectrum. However, you have no guarantee that when those individual waves eventually combine with one another before reaching your ear drums, that the relative amplitudes, the distance between the wave crests and troughs etc. will match that of the original source. 
Moreover, look at our eardrums...they kinds look like a dynamic driver diaphragm, right? So, does it not make sense to use a device that mimics the shape and response of the ear drum? I don't know if there is a dynamic driver that can match the response of an ear drum...and I'm pretty certain that no 2 ear drums have exactly the same response, but surely a driver that responds the same as the average ear drum would suffice? So I guess, theoretically (to me anyways) a dynamic driver seems to make more sense. These are just the things I think about late at night when I can;t sleep lol. 
 
Dec 12, 2016 at 10:19 PM Post #14 of 24

DJ The Rocket

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Moreover, look at our eardrums...they kinds look like a dynamic driver diaphragm, right? So, does it not make sense to use a device that mimics the shape and response of the ear drum? I don't know if there is a dynamic driver that can match the response of an ear drum...and I'm pretty certain that no 2 ear drums have exactly the same response, but surely a driver that responds the same as the average ear drum would suffice? So I guess, theoretically (to me anyways) a dynamic driver seems to make more sense. These are just the things I think about late at night when I can;t sleep lol. 


This is clever, well thought out, and I can understand how it appeals to the romanticist in you. Its also completely irrelevant to anything about sound and how we perceive it in reality X]
 
Dec 12, 2016 at 11:33 PM Post #15 of 24

TheoS53

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This is clever, well thought out, and I can understand how it appeals to the romanticist in you. Its also completely irrelevant to anything about sound and how we perceive it in reality X]

So, lemme get this straight.... You leave a sarcastic comment, but offer no alternative thoughts. Ok then
 

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