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Shure IEM 535 vs antique E4C impedence

  1. yo5454
    Hi, just bought a Shure 535, to finally replaced my antique E4C. I mainly use IEM with my A&K Junior.
    The issue I have is the 535 is much louder than E4C, and the sound is really bright and harsh. I know maybe break-in some time may help, but really surprised the latest Shure sound when it compares to the ancient IEM from Shure.
    I mainly listen to acoustic music, classical and Jazz..
    I checked 535 impedence is 35Ohm, while E4C is 29Ohm, I compared my other headphones such as HD580, 600, HD25-1 II... the loudness and impedence numbers are matching. However this 535 is weird.

    I bought mine directly from Amazon I know many from eBay are fake.
    The main difference from 535 to my aged E4C:
    treble more delicate sparkles from E4C, the cymbals are more airy too.
    the mid bass, 535 has more weight, but the mid frequency E4C is fuller.
    lower bass, 535 has more weight but E4C has more details.

    I hope I'm wrong with 535, maybe I need to replace cables or run-in can make big difference ??
    Last edited: Dec 1, 2019
  2. surfgeorge
    The E4C has a sensitivity of 109dB/W/m, the SE535 has 119, that is approximately twice as loud.
    Also, from the graphs on the internet the E4C has a 10dB dip in the 4-6kHz range and the SE535 has a more common 4-5dB dip, so it will have more treble.
    Their signature is quite different.
    I'd still make sure it's not a fake, but generally it will be louder and brighter
  3. yo5454
    I bought directly from Amazon , one time before from eBay but a fake.
    Any cable swapping for ~$30?
  4. surfgeorge
    I only have experience with DD IEMs and I hear a difference between cables, but they don’t change the signature.

    When you say you bought directly from Amazon - you mean the seller was Amazon?
    I have had issues with Amazon Marketplace sellers, once I got a fake SD card and a another time a product that was not as described.
    The good thing was that Amazon was very helpful in both cases.
    So if it was a Marketplace seller, check their history and if you have doubts, contact them for help, if that doesn’t help, contact Amazon.
  5. yo5454
    Yes I bought from Amazon directly, the price went back to $399 again today, it was $299 for 2 days only. Any good value cable recommendation? Thx
  6. ProtegeManiac Contributor
    The Shure SE535 has one of the highest sensitivity ratings among headphones at 119dB/1mW. My Aurisonics ASG-1.3 is at 120dB/1mW and on my old T-Mobile/Snapdragon SGS3 it goes from "just a little more" at two levels above muted to "NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOTURNITDOWN!!!" on the third, rendering it unusable, on top of a heck of a lot of electronic noise when using Neutron Music Player, and just a touch less noise than the SE535. A software update fixed both issues on the ASG-1.3 but I soon replaced the phone and didn't get to test it with the SE535 post-update.

    My old E2C didn't have either problem but it has its own, like barely getting loud enough on my iPod and not having enough low end.

    That's extremely weird because if I would expect any negative opinion on the SE535 other than how most devices are too noisy with it, it would be that they seem "boring," ie, a lot of bass but without the upper end impact on Grados but not as much total bass as, say, the Sennheiser IE8(0) or ASG-1(.x).

    If anything I prefer the SE420 for better treble extension without getting too harsh, or the SE425 since that one at least has more bass than the SE420.

    Are you sure you're getting a good seal? They're not exactly the same shell design so even the same eartip type might not have the same seal or can't get as deep inside your ear canal.

    Never really noticed break-in being a thing and without any other possible explanation (eg like how earpads are the ones that are really breaking in) other than on my home speakers before.

    I'm not sure I understand how they "match." The closest most direct relationship between impedance and loudness is how impedance used to matter a lot for sensitivity, ie, higher impedance means higher sensitivity. "Used to," in the sense that the 120ohm AKG K500 is at 94dB/1mW, the 62ohm AKG K701 is at 93dB/1mW, and the 300ohm HD580/580J/600 is at 97dB/1mW, but now you have the 22ohm HE400S at 96dB/1mW and the 32ohm AKG K553 at ~99dB/1mW without sounding like they came free with a Discman. Not to mention the 35ohm SE535 at 119dB/1mW and the 32ohm ASG 1.3 at 120dB/1mW.

    I can't remember the e4c sound anymore but if the SE42x is any indication the treble is a lot louder than the SE535, it just doesn't get outright piercing sharp. It's like the treble on Stax Lambda...

    ...with the midrange on the SE420 being great with the treble however the SE425's low end makes all of the midrange better than even the SE535...

    ...and while this seems to be more along the usual trend between the SE53x vs the SE42x/maybe e4c, it depends on the tips and fit. ShureOlives on them makes the SE535 bass overbearing more so since that reduces the top end as well; on the SE42x the treble isn't badly effected while the low end is improved enough to be more easily audible. Still even when the SE535 gets too loud at the low end the detail is there, ie, what is a "thumpthumpthump!" on teh SE425 just comes out as "THUMPTHUMPTHUMP!" and not "THWWWWWWUUUUWWWWUUUUMMM."

    The eartips can have a more immediate effect on the sound so try the others first, and maybe a few third party tips.
    PaganDL likes this.
  7. yo5454
    Thanks a lot for the reply!
    My cable is the one with Mic since I bought this special edition with Bluetooth cable too.
    For now I'll skip the cable trial but will try the foam insert and change player from AK to my Samsung s10 and iphone x
  8. yo5454
    Hi, just update: foam tip does help get more balanced sound, I guess better seal is the key.
    However the sound especially treble still rough and noisy.
    I'm wondering with 3 drivers, may it be the structure causing vibration, and maybe damping inside 535 ? Anyone tried disect or modification before ?

    I currently testing loud using Mahler 6th and Charlie Haden Montreal Tapes, reference is similar priced E4 and Momentum
  9. ProtegeManiac Contributor
    There are too many small parts not to mention glued housings that will make mods like that impossible.

    And I'd doubt it's vibration in the chassis like reflections off a windshield while the door rattles, since I have a 15mm dynamic driver pumping bass out of my ASG-1.3 and the treble isn't grinding.

    I'd doubt it's the response either since it's not anywhere near being polar opposite of the ASG-1.3, ie, rolls off above 1000hz.

    Are you using the exact same source on both the SE535 and the e4c?
  10. yo5454
    Hi yes, just same AK Junior.
    To be fair, my son who uses Bose, Apple and Sony feels 535 is already much improved.

    I'm just picky here like an audiophile
  11. ProtegeManiac Contributor
    It's got a higher impedance and not a drastically different driver design, and also not a dynamic driver to begin with, so I'd doubt the impedance is causing damping factor problems vs the lower impedance e4c. Not to mention that AK's haven't had an impedance problem since the AK100 or AK120.

    Other possible causes could be that the shell design allows for deeper insertion into your ears vs the e4c, which might be partially addressed by other eartips, problem is it's hard to guess which one will work (maybe try a triple flange; the eartip itself goes deeper for a better seal but the . It's also possible that there's some earwax build up in the e4c and there's a partial blockage, just enough to affect the higher freqs without affecting the rest of the range enough.
  12. yo5454
    That's good point I started feeling itchy from inside my earsomehow I remember I felt the sams harsh sound from e4c when I received them years ago !
  13. mattiav
    May just be a matter of getting used to the new earphone? The SE535 was my daily driver for years (since largely replaced by the Campfire Audio IEMs), though wouldn’t call it particularly bright sounding. More warm, even a little dark sounding. Must say I only really started noticing when comparing to the Andromeda S...

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