Sennheiser IE900 Review, Measurements, & Harman Target Talk
Jun 2, 2021 at 9:42 AM Post #721 of 2,687

Tiax

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I've read somewhere in IE900 specifications that the housings are considered as 'semi-open'. Does this mean some of the sound escapes (bleeds) or these are fully closed-back type of IEM similar to Shure's offerings in terms of sound isolation/0 bleed?
It's not semi-open but rather vented, and it doesn't leak any sound as far as i can tell, but i'm listening at the low/moderate levels.
Isolation is ok, not etymotic or customs level, could also be because with the tips i use they fit me in a semi shallow way, it's much more comfortable for me than shoving them all the way inside the canals.
 
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Jun 2, 2021 at 9:44 AM Post #722 of 2,687

GumbyDammit223

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I see the US Sennheiser site now has the purchase option enabled. Wasn't there yesterday. Now, do I have self control or will immediate gratification take over...again?
 
Jun 2, 2021 at 9:51 AM Post #723 of 2,687

asifur

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I want to share some thoughts on the IE900 after almost two weeks of daily use. I’m sorry to say I’m not sufficiently technical to address in a way that many look for, as such, it will be a layman description with the knowledge I do have where possible. I am a music lover for many years (and once upon a time 90s DJ...) and up till last year, mostly listen via my separates systems and a variety of headphones and earphones - as of last November, I didn’t even know what a hybrid IEM was, let alone a single DD or an EST driver, they were all just earphones, headphones and some were Bluetooth (of which I've a few gathering dust)! My journey over the last few months with IEMs has certainly been obsessive, expensive and incredibly enjoyable - I’ve heard music in ways I’ve never before and I now rarely listen via my main system or full-size headphones. I admit to being a fan of Sennheiser and have had a few of their products over the years - HD-25-1 being a go-to back in my DJ days, HD650 (which I never use) in more recent years and a trusty set of IE8 that served me well for about 8 years, only actually finally retiring them last year as this hobby took hold. I’ve learnt a lot (but not enough) in the last few months and met many great likeminded music fans, I plan to continue this voyage of discovery and strive to be more proficient to articulate what I ‘hear’ into words that are useful to others… but for now, this is about as good as I can give!

Most home listening has been via the Sony NW-WM1A or Sony ZX507 for out and about portable use.

IE900.jpg

My recent IEM collection in order of purchase: XBA-N3, DUNU ZEN, DUNU SA6, Sony IER-M9, UM MEST MKII

First and foremost, I absolutely love the IE900 - right now, if I could only keep one of my IEMs, it would be this - mostly due to being the most solid all-rounder of any IEM I’ve heard in terms of its ability to handle any genre. In addition; the size, weight, form factor are perfect for any situation - walking, in bed, wandering about the house etc. I walk 5k every morning with my dog and I look forward to getting up at 6am to get these popped back in my ears - likewise during the day while working, finding moments to get lost in the music for a few minutes, even just while making my lunch or getting through some admin that doesn’t require much brainpower. I keep looking at others in my collection and thinking I must give them a shot, but then nah, IE900 it is…

IE900-IEM.jpg

Soundstage feels wide and natural, a well-positioned ‘stereo’ sound, instruments very well positioned and where I expect to find them relative to general listening experience of music over the years. The MEST MKII in comparison is somewhat wider but absolutely ‘taller’ too and much more 3D - this is good for some music but definitely not all - for example, I love it on well recorded ambient music, especially very cinematic albums - I’m not as keen with a lot of rock albums though, I find it can sound a bit unnatural at times, instruments a bit off in terms of positioning - a thought though in this regard, is it just I’m not used to hearing a delivery of this nature and need to get used to it?! But on MEST with genres that suit, that 3D tall and wide delivery is stunning and certainly a keeper in that regard.

In spite of the wide soundstage, I still feel a very centrally focused low-end delivery - I feel like the focus zone is in the middle of my head but separating out as appropriate for the instruments. I actually love how it ‘sits’ in my head, I really feel with kick drums for example that they thud in both ears perfectly to land a central delivery… reminds me of beat-matching kick drums back in the good old DJ days and I actually crave this position with other IEMs at times.

IE900- ZX507.jpg

Some of my test tracks had deep sub bass sitting alongside pounding kick drums - all wonderfully controlled and I keep wondering how the heck something so small is capable of this. I find the bass more obvious compared to the MEST MKII, not sure if its better per-say - I think going back to my reference to its position is where it shines - potentially a personal preference as opposed to one being better than the other.

The higher register of treble is an area that I tend to shy away from in music delivery - often choosing with audio system over the years to EQ bass up and treble down, probably the techno/house DJ in me. I’ve been concerned about this and look out for comments in reviews when considering purchases that might suggest an IEM is bright. Much to my surprise, yes the treble is more evident than I would expect to like, it feels like its fine-tuned marginally below a point where it could be an issue, but instead sounds wonderful and adds so much to a detailed, pristine and analytical delivery - I’ve yet to find it harsh on any music and again, often amazed how there is so much detail from a single driver.

IE-900 Package.jpg

There is a sense of being slightly recessed vs the MEST, a more forward centre on the MEST for sure which means for some vocal tracks, especially male vocals on the lower end of the scale that they can feel slightly back - not to the point that it bothers me personally but I do note at times.

The cable is excellent and very similar to the IER-M9, looks almost the exact same - slightly stiffer though and a small amount of microphonics if not correctly positioned around my ears and with the chin thing (what’s it called?!) - but easy to position and when out walking, I get zero cable feedback. The ear hooks are quite stiff and bend well around my ears - a slight concern here is when bending them over my ears, I wonder is this putting strain on the MMCX connectors that might damage over time?

The tips didn’t work out that well for me, I couldn’t get a good seal with any of the silicone tips and they sounded pretty poor as a result - I tried them first and was incredibly underwhelmed, bass was absolutely feeble as best. Switched to the included large foam tip and a whole new world opened - wow! I did ultimately switch to Comply TSX-500 in medium as I get an even better seal and no impact to SQ, unlike with some others where bass becomes way too much and overall too dark, not the case here at all - the TSX-500 seem to have a relatively medium bore size. Isolation is great - when walking, I can hear louder traffic but not enough to interrupt my listening, at home sitting in my kitchen as I am right now, I can’t hear any other noise in the house, including my wife talking to me… is it terrible to admit my frustration with having to unplug an IEM and ask my wife to say whatever she said again, only to find its a reminder I need to cut the grass or something? - she should know I have important listening to do.

They are hungry enough compared to the MEST MKII, on the Sony NW-WM1A, I need to crank up to the late 50s (out of 120) somewhere on high-gain, versus maybe early 40s on the MEST. Still plenty of room though.

Anyway, I would struggle to say whether I prefer the MEST to the IE900, they are both incredible IEMs in their own right but as noted, the IE900 would probably take the prize given how they can be a jack of all trades with any genre in any listening situation. I’m not exaggerating when I say they often take my breath away, I’ve stayed up way past my bedtime several nights over the last couple of weeks as I just want to keep listening, I’ve even broken my no wine during the week rule and had to pour a glass to accompany my listening bliss! They definitely complement each other well though and I will certainly be submerging myself in the MEST again soon for longer sessions.

They are unbelievably addictive and in my humble opinion, absolutely worth the price tag. Apologies again that I can’t address areas that a lot of folks here would like to know and I hope this was somewhat useful. I’m conscious there is a lot of interest in this IEM and I’m very lucky to have one before launch, as such keen to share what I can. Still early days too but I do feel comfortable at this point with my findings.

IE900-2.jpg
nicely written... almost a full review one can say!
 
Jun 2, 2021 at 10:02 AM Post #725 of 2,687

jmills8

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Jun 2, 2021 at 12:37 PM Post #727 of 2,687

Scuba Devils

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Yes, they are robust, round, thick rubber and offer full isolation, works in both positions for me but out is bound to be better on any tip imo rather than the "stage" very in unlike a custom.
Anyways, these things are personal anatomical and trial is required

Trying now, yes very nice pairing.
 
Jun 2, 2021 at 12:46 PM Post #728 of 2,687

Vitaly2017

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The Tiger will definitely roar his way to hyping it up to the moon and back :joy:

🤣🐅🐾
YOU CAN BE ASSURED hype is going to happen 😛😃


For me only the largest Silicon tips work, all those foamies are too small and sound thin to me. You cannot generalise anything in regards to IEM tips and fit. The IEM body could be a little shorter for me too, it sits very tight.
Other than that the IE900 sounds just great.

Eartips have always been a wide and neverending topic. From my experience with the ie900 and the stock silicon eartips seems to align with what others are saying and there is a reason for this. The silicon tips are thin and easily pliable, they are very soft in terms of material resistance which changes the sound not into its best. For me with foames I get more isolation and as a result I get better bass, better treble and overall a more recognisable sound tuning parameters that my ears are used to hear.
This is why I said in my first impressions the silicon tips seems to replicate an open back headphone sound, cause they are very light and not sealing tight your ear canal.


Awesome! Can’t wait for more impressions! How does it sound compared to trio or fourte?

Will cover those impressions very soon, once the burn in reaches the minimum specs I will do a very deep comparison specifically vs fourté! For Trio I will only go by memory sorry. You know Trio was one of my all time favorite 😃🥰


I tried the stock medium foam tips again last night and good fit, comfort, and sounded great - went walking this morning though and isolation reduced plus a lot more microphonics... back to my Comply TSX-500, which btw for any MEST MKII owners, these are the supplied foam tips.

It seems to be the bulbous shape of the TSX-500 that allow them to sit perfectly in my ears - also a decent width bore so they don't muffle the way foam can at times. Foam are the last tips I typically reach for in other IEMs but just perfect with IE900. I've bought another pack as they do tend to degrade over time but I can live with that!

Comply on the left below, stock on the right - both medium.


I will give the comply foams a spin soon as well I am curious to hear how it sounds on ie900 as me too I never was a fan of foamies cause they alter the sound by a lot. So what I was ending doing is building my own hybrid eartips lol. By using comply foam 😛🙃

From all the feedback I read on the thread it seems ie900 shape and design seems to favor the foams more due to the fact that majority of folks are unable to get proper fit and tight seel with silicons ones. Hens even I experienced it 🙄 I like the silicon tips but they leaking a lot of noise in and dont offer the tuning I am after.


Nice one Tiger! Thanks for sharing and taking those nice unboxing pics. Definitely looking forward to hearing more of your thoughts.

I decided to keep my preorder even though they won’t land in Australia until August. It’s going to be a long wait if all these positive impressions keep coming through 🥲


Haha thanks bud!
Seriously knowing that we both have similar desires and expectations from high quality gear. I can reassure you this one here is a must listen at all costs. I still need more time to determine how ToTL this ie900 is. So far its a super huge wow and lots of atreit's that flagships have under the hood.

I highly recommend it bro, I am sure you will be comparing it against the ier-z1r 😛🙃😅

For 1300$ this is probably the best iem for its true performance and cost ratio! A very hard one to find this days 😎

🐅🐾
 
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Jun 2, 2021 at 1:30 PM Post #729 of 2,687

pietcux

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There is one advise for good seal with silikon tips. I grease them a little bit with kokos fat, it makes them smoother and helps the seal a lot. I just have best experience with this practice since my Sony MDR-EX1000. It took me days to get a proper permanent seal. I still have those Frankenbolts, also a nice bass, but too sharp treble for me.
 
Jun 2, 2021 at 1:33 PM Post #730 of 2,687

jmills8

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There is one advise for good seal with silikon tips. I grease them a little bit with kokos fat, it makes them smoother and helps the seal a lot. I just have best experience with this practice since my Sony MDR-EX1000. It took me days to get a proper permanent seal. I still have those Frankenbolts, also a nice bass, but too sharp treble for me.
Or spread your ear wax on them, then shove it back in deep.
 
Jun 2, 2021 at 1:45 PM Post #731 of 2,687

Scuba Devils

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Trying now, yes very nice pairing.

Replying to update this - Azla Shorts fit well and generally sound great but a touch too bright at times for me.
 
Jun 2, 2021 at 1:51 PM Post #732 of 2,687

Vitaly2017

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Replying to update this - Azla Shorts fit well and generally sound great but a touch too bright at times for me.

Hey have you tried experimenting with eartip position 1 and 2? I am really finding position 1quite special
 
Jun 2, 2021 at 1:56 PM Post #733 of 2,687

Scuba Devils

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Hey have you tried experimenting with eartip position 1 and 2? I am really finding position 1quite special

Is 1 a deeper insertion?
 
Jun 2, 2021 at 2:37 PM Post #734 of 2,687

Vitaly2017

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Is 1 a deeper insertion?

2 is deeper like when you slide the tip all the way down flush to the base.

1 is when the tip sits slightly extended sort of, is when you can see the aluminum barrel.
 

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Jun 2, 2021 at 2:41 PM Post #735 of 2,687

mashuto

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I really really don't need any more iems (especially not more high end expensive ones), but I find myself still very interested in these. I did see that there's a listing up on Amazon with a June 15th date... And with Amazon's return policy there shouldn't be much risk... But I really don't need them...

I gotta stop hanging out around here.
 

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