RikudouGoku's Database (IEMs/Earbuds Ranking list, Music list, Statistics, IEM Graphs)
Feb 11, 2020 at 12:00 PM Thread Starter Post #1 of 686

RikudouGoku

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Here is the thread where I am gonna post updates whenever I add/change something in the list.

https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1YNuslYM4CrhMPrOLofzTm4ei7HEfP8AI1zxswrMw2ho/edit?usp=sharing


2020-06-24: Patreon https://www.patreon.com/RikudouGoku

2020-11-06:
Aggressive: I mostly use this term to describe if the treble is “in your face” or not, meaning that it has a lot of treble quantity (not necessarily a sharp treble though). (similar to fatigue, but without the time factor that makes you tired after a while.)

Air: The sense of being exposed to real air and having an airy transducer/bud will make it easier to sound real. A sense of realism, and a very important factor to have if you are listening to live tracks. (having a lot of air can also help you perceive the soundstage as being bigger.)

Bloat/Bleed: I use both of these terms interchangeably but I mean the same thing, that the bass is either too loose or/and too slow so that it takes over more of the range than it should do (meaning that it “invades” the mids and also your perception of the treble). Having a lot of bass quantity is an easy way to get a bloated bass, but in some more rare case (positive for me) the transducer in question does not get bloated even with a ton of bass. That is a high-quality bass for me.

Bright: A brighter sound will have an overall sound that leans more toward treble than bass.

Coherency: Applies to hybrids where there are different driver types and each one has their own characteristics. Bad coherency would for example be if a transducer (DD = bass, BA = mid/treble) has a very slow bass speed while the treble is really fast, that would sound unnatural and you would be able to pick up on what driver is doing what frequencies. While good coherency is the opposite, where all drivers are “synced” as in that they have the same speed.

Details: Think of it as the resolution for video, you have 480p, 1080p and even 8k now. You can have stuff that sounds low detailed or low resolution (480p-) or highly detailed (1080p). It exposes more of the recording, like if you can hear the player turning the note pages.

Extension: How low/high a transducer can play, that is if it can reach 20hz or go up to 20khz. Different from the amount of rumble/air, since rumble/air is a quantitative factor and you can consider the extension to be the quality.

Fatigue: If a transducer is fatiguing, in most cases that means that it has a lot/too much treble quantity, so listening to it in a long session will make you tired. It doesn’t necessarily mean that it is sharp though (it can be). And fatigue can also be caused by a bloaty bass or if it simply has too much (quantity). If a transducer doesn’t have a lot of treble/bass quantity, then it most likely won’t be fatiguing but can be a boring experience since it won’t be energetic/exciting enough.

Imaging: How precise every instrument is placed in the sound. With good imaging it is easy to tell where everything is or if it is bad it can sound like a giant mess. Imaging is very important for gaming since that is the factor that lets you know where your enemies is by their footsteps.

(Here is a very quick and easy to understand explanation of soundstage/imaging: https://www.reddit.com/r/headphones/comments/ipfs5b/best_explanation_of_soundstage_vs_imaging/ )

Instrument-separation: How the distance between the instruments are placed. Bad = sounds like a mess/chaotic, good = the opposite, clean, can handle faster busy tracks.

Naturality: The combination of the 2 factors, being timbre and tonality. It is how natural/real a transducer sounds like on a track/genre. For example, you can have god-tier timbre but if the tonality is completely wrong for that specific track/genre, it doesn’t really matter since it won’t sound natural anyway.

Note-weight: I don’t think I have used the term “note weight” specifically that much, but that’s just the term used to specify thickness/thinness of the sound. Usually having a thinner sound will make it sound more “analytical” while a thicker would be more “musical”.

Shouty: Can’t relax while listening and female vocals particularly are very “nagging” like. Not pleasant.
nagging.jpg

Sharp: Worse than just a shouty sound and is painful, can sound like a gun shooting needles into your ears.
gun.jpg

Sibilant: You DO NOT want me to use this term to describe the treble, this is the point where I simply can’t listen to it more than a few seconds before I almost throw them away. Extremely painful, or what I like to call “Death by treble”.
clipart-skull-death-4.png



Soundstage: How “big” the sound is, if it sounds like it is room sized or a giant concert hall. Width = left/right and depth = forward/back are the dimensions that I use. Transducers are generally average in depth, but some have very deep soundstage and that is quite rare.

(Here is a very quick and easy to understand explanation of soundstage/imaging: https://www.reddit.com/r/headphones/comments/ipfs5b/best_explanation_of_soundstage_vs_imaging/ )

Speed: How fast or slow a bass is. There is the attack, which would be how fast you stretch out your arms when you punch and the decay that is how fast you pull back your punch. Having a fast bass is important (along with tightness) to keep the bass clean and not bloated and even more so if there is a lot of quantity.

Tame: The opposite of aggressive treble. It can sound very relaxing but risks being boring.

Texture: You can visualize bass texture like the pictures below.
1604676009726.png

Bad texture = stopping your punch once you hit the target.
1604676027055.png

Good texture = punching “through” the target.

Even if the bass quantity (punching strength) is the same, it will feel (hurt) more if you have more texture.

Tight: Used for describing how “tight” the bass punch is. Where you can visualize a tight bass as precise hits:
precisehit.gif

And the opposite, a loose bass would be something like this:
loose.gif

Where you can see a lot of shockwaves, that would be percieved as bloat in sound.

Timbre: Timbre is how close/natural the sound of your gear sounds like in comparison to the real instruments. If it sounds very similar to the real thing then it has good timbre, if it sounds unnatural/different then it has bad timbre.

Tonality: How thick/thin, bright, warm or dark a sound is. “Good” tonality is depended on the track/genre that is being used, for example on a Hip-hop track it is better if it is a warmer and thicker sound rather than bright and thin. While that same transducer that is warm/thick that will suit Hip-hop well might be bad for an acoustic track that is better with a brighter/thinner sound.

Transducer: A collective term for iems/earbuds/headphones/speakers.

Warm: A warmer sound will have an overall sound that leans more toward bass than treble.

2020-11-30: EX rank explanation

2021-01-01: 2020 Gear of the year

2021-03-29: Cable measurements/ranking description
 

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Feb 11, 2020 at 12:23 PM Post #3 of 686

RikudouGoku

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Interesting. Will you be posting commentary here in the thread?
Depends if people want it. If I do it then It will mostly be a brief impression ( after using them a while) of the sound and not like my reviews. And the impressions will be my 100% subjective opinion unlike my reviews that I try to do as objectively as possible.
 
Feb 11, 2020 at 12:33 PM Post #4 of 686

SilverEars

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Now I'm curious how the measured response looks for your 'subjective' ranked top iems. I haven't found the LZ A6 measurement yet. I hope you understand my skepticisim of many Chifi iems that are flavor of the months or days. Lol

The issue with Chifi is, they churn out different shell variasions of same tunings. There are too many out there, and even if they are fairly low priced, buying them to try them out adds up, and you end up with landfills. Lol

We need to be assured people arn't just pushing products from free samples.
 
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Feb 11, 2020 at 12:41 PM Post #5 of 686

RikudouGoku

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Now I'm curious how the measured response looks for your 'subjective' ranked top iems. I haven't found the LZ A6 measurement yet. I hope you understand my skepticisim of many Chifi iems that are flavor of the months or days. Lol

The issue with Chifi is, they churn out different shell variasions of same tunings. There are too many out there, and even if they are fairly low priced, buying them to try them out adds up, and you end up with landfills. Lol

We need to be assured people arn't just pushing products from free samples.
Agree that chi-fi can be a trap, but recently chi-fi has really stepped up their game and there is plenty of different tunings available in different price ranges. Blon 03, LZ A6 mini and Tin hifi P1 for example are all great value for their sound profiles.
 
Feb 11, 2020 at 3:14 PM Post #7 of 686

RikudouGoku

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It will much appreciate to see your ranking list.
And I red your review on the LZ A6 mini. I'm very close to pull the trigger on it.
You mean the LZ A6 right? not the Mini. If you are interested in the mini then I suggest you wait a bit because I will get the Shozy Form 1.1 soon ( this friday according to amazon) and then I can compare the 1.1 to the A6 mini ( they are about the same price).
 
Feb 11, 2020 at 3:26 PM Post #8 of 686

barbaresh

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You mean the LZ A6 right? not the Mini. If you are interested in the mini then I suggest you wait a bit because I will get the Shozy Form 1.1 soon ( this friday according to amazon) and then I can compare the 1.1 to the A6 mini ( they are about the same price).
I meant the mini. My Shozy 1.1 is on the way. But I'll wait for your impression.
 
Feb 12, 2020 at 3:31 AM Post #9 of 686

baskingshark

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Feb 12, 2020 at 7:24 AM Post #10 of 686

RikudouGoku

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Nice list bro, maybe u can add a segment on which IEM is better for which genres/preferred sound signature. Or maybe classify them into DD/BA/hybrids? Since they have different strengths and weaknesses between the transducer types.
Might add the sound signature segment, but the driver type and also price is something I believe might be better to not have on the list. Because I think that placebo can affect ones judgment quite a bit. For example If I classify the T800 as an 8 driver Balanced armature then people might think that the bass is gonna be the typical BA bass, which it isnt.
 
Feb 12, 2020 at 10:50 AM Post #11 of 686

RikudouGoku

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@barbaresh just got my Shozy Form 1.1 and...it stomps on the A6 mini and can even rival the A6 in some parts. The A6 mini´s 3k peak really stands out when compared to the 1.1 and the highs just sounds grainy. I am changing the A6 mini´s grade from A- to B.
The 1.1 bass is as good as the A6 and the mids is just slightly below the a6 in both quantity and quality. Literally the only things the A6 is better than the 1.1 is technicalities ( instrument separation, soundstage, imaging) and more details in the treble and more air.


2020-02-12: LZ A6 Mini grade changed from A- to B.
 

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