Shure KSE1500 Review - Shure KSE1500 Sound Isolating Electrostatic Earphones
Mar 9, 2021 at 11:48 AM Post #5,431 of 5,653

118900

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Spent the morning listening to the JB Project (Akira Jimbo and Brian Bromberg)
KSE1200 calling the shots and giving my ears something to enjoy

jbpbrom.png jbpbrom2.jpgjbpbrom3.png
going to be listening to this later today, just arrived and already uploaded, ready for playback:
 

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Mar 9, 2021 at 4:50 PM Post #5,433 of 5,653

bobeau

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I am using qudelix 5k with kse. Not too bad. It's has 10 band peq. You can use it via Bluetooth or USB from IPhone or android phone. However I prefer the sound from Cayin N3pro. But the 5k is really light and portable it's as good as I'm just carrying KSE and energiser..

Nice! I went ahead and purchased an IL-DSP on the way, but it's cool there is a bluetooth option as well. I'll do some more research on it.

At the cost of the KSE and performance it affords spending $100 here or there is not really an issue. I think with good PEQ options I'm done on my head-fi journey.

A friend who recently visited who went with me to CanJam a few years back (so he's familiar w/ Summit-fi), has an Ananda w/ a D90 stack thinks this the KSE is the best he's ever heard. I'm not even using a DAC, just a straight line out from my 16" MBP w/ Roon.
 
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Mar 10, 2021 at 2:19 AM Post #5,434 of 5,653

Lokiiami

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Nice! I went ahead and purchased an IL-DSP on the way, but it's cool there is a bluetooth option as well. I'll do some more research on it.

At the cost of the KSE and performance it affords spending $100 here or there is not really an issue. I think with good PEQ options I'm done on my head-fi journey.

A friend who recently visited who went with me to CanJam a few years back (so he's familiar w/ Summit-fi), has an Ananda w/ a D90 stack thinks this the KSE is the best he's ever heard. I'm not even using a DAC, just a straight line out from my 16" MBP w/ Roon.
wow.. good to know its better than a fullsize headphone. without my KSE at the moment my eyes has been wondering lately... on some fullsize headphones. and am glad I read this post.
 
Mar 10, 2021 at 4:12 AM Post #5,435 of 5,653

gazzington

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I’m thinking of getting one of these. What cable do I need to use it with an ibasso dx300?
Are these still a good purchase in 2021?
 
Mar 10, 2021 at 5:07 AM Post #5,436 of 5,653

MarkParity

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I’m thinking of getting one of these. What cable do I need to use it with an ibasso dx300?
Are these still a good purchase in 2021?
1200, or 1500? I say go for it, I don't think you will regret the purchase. You can use one of the two 3.5mm aux cables that the KSE1200 comes with to get you up and running.

The KSE is a good purchase in 2021, 2022, 2023 and probably 2024 too. :)
 
Mar 10, 2021 at 5:15 AM Post #5,437 of 5,653

118900

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I’m thinking of getting one of these. What cable do I need to use it with an ibasso dx300?
Are these still a good purchase in 2021?
I would honestly go for the 1200 if you can handle the hassle of a separate DAC. And yes, there’s nothing to touch it IMO, however always listen for yourself if you can before spending that much.

The highest end, best engineered BAs may come “relatively” close to electrostatics because of their low mass (compared to other drivers) but the mass of the KSE diaphragm is far lower and not the same thing at all.

You also have the added benefit of a single driver for the entire (very wide) frequency response which means no crossover circuitry and therefore added transparency.
 
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Mar 11, 2021 at 11:46 PM Post #5,438 of 5,653

captblaze

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Now on my third week and I just realized the KSE1200 sounds as good (to my ears / brain) on day one as on day 21. Leads me to one of two possible conclusions.

Either the KSE1200 needs no "burn in", or "burn in" is nothing but an adjustment period for your brain to figure out what it is hearing and decide how pleasing that is to you and your particular preference.

One other observation... Who claims electrostatic transducers can't dig deep? Shure seems to have unlocked that Pandora's box and dispelled some of the confusion.
 
Mar 12, 2021 at 3:39 AM Post #5,439 of 5,653

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Now on my third week and I just realized the KSE1200 sounds as good (to my ears / brain) on day one as on day 21. Leads me to one of two possible conclusions.

Either the KSE1200 needs no "burn in", or "burn in" is nothing but an adjustment period for your brain to figure out what it is hearing and decide how pleasing that is to you and your particular preference.

One other observation... Who claims electrostatic transducers can't dig deep? Shure seems to have unlocked that Pandora's box and dispelled some of the confusion.
Shure state that their products do not require burn in and in all honestly I didn’t notice any myself, but it was a while ago.

by dig deep do you mean baselines? Try listening to mezzanine by massive attack or the track fantasy by the XX for confirmation. Phenomenal bass reproduction for electrostatics (aided by being in-ears, but phenomenal nonetheless).
 
Mar 12, 2021 at 4:55 PM Post #5,440 of 5,653

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Now on my third week and I just realized the KSE1200 sounds as good (to my ears / brain) on day one as on day 21. Leads me to one of two possible conclusions.

Either the KSE1200 needs no "burn in", or "burn in" is nothing but an adjustment period for your brain to figure out what it is hearing and decide how pleasing that is to you and your particular preference.

One other observation... Who claims electrostatic transducers can't dig deep? Shure seems to have unlocked that Pandora's box and dispelled some of the confusion.
What do you think of the sub bass? And which eartips best fit for you?
As on burn in , I did feel that the treble seems to be smoother after about 2 weeks in.
 
Mar 12, 2021 at 5:10 PM Post #5,441 of 5,653

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I have to agree that the KSE showed its true color immediately. When I got it I expected that it would take a bit of listening to get accustomed to the sound sig. Not so. I could immediately hear something enjoyable and special. From some of the talk, I was worried about it being bass light, too bright, or the soundstage being small. I was prepared to stick them out through the brain burn-in, but didn't need to.

If anything, over time I've been able to resolve more of the detail, and pick up on the outstanding quality of the bass. Switching to the Hugo 2 from the Mojo opened up the soundstage (it's not bad for an IEM), and showed that the KSE despite this is actually stellar at imaging.

I've tried several other top end IEMs since then (sony ier-z1r, anole vx, dunu luna) and realized that I'm now ruined with the KSE's detail. You don't realize it until you try something inferior. I've turned into an electrostatic fan. DD's and BA's just can't reach this level.
 
Mar 12, 2021 at 5:12 PM Post #5,442 of 5,653

captblaze

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What do you think of the sub bass? And which eartips best fit for you?
As on burn in , I did feel that the treble seems to be smoother after about 2 weeks in.
I have the stock grey silicones, they give me a proper seal. my ears canals are in between M and S, so M foams too big and S foams too small. the M silicone collapses into my ears rather comfortably.

Sub bass is totally dependent on what information is encoded in the track I listen too. Basshead quality, not really. Full textured bass with the ability to go way low on the register, yes

treble to me is dependent on the interconnect I using. Can be a bit recessed with some, but my Alo SXC 8 fixes that for me
 
Mar 12, 2021 at 8:25 PM Post #5,443 of 5,653

bobeau

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I highly recommend trying to EQ these. As I mentioned above, what works for me is have harman down low and oratory 1990 up top. But harman or oratory by themself sound off. That said, I'm also using Spin-fit 240Ms, which have been shown far back in this thread to add some treble and bass lift (not a ton, but 1-2 dBs in places).

With these, they have a more sub-bass low shelf, a bit of a midbass cut (together makes them sound punchy and open), and some correction to the super wavy upper mids/lower treble.

These things respond well to EQ as they're so low distortion.
 

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Mar 13, 2021 at 5:48 AM Post #5,444 of 5,653

captblaze

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I highly recommend trying to EQ these. As I mentioned above, what works for me is have harman down low and oratory 1990 up top. But harman or oratory by themself sound off. That said, I'm also using Spin-fit 240Ms, which have been shown far back in this thread to add some treble and bass lift (not a ton, but 1-2 dBs in places).

With these, they have a more sub-bass low shelf, a bit of a midbass cut (together makes them sound punchy and open), and some correction to the super wavy upper mids/lower treble.

These things respond well to EQ as they're so low distortion.

Are you basing your findings off Mojo being your source? I find Mojo a bit slow and more laid back than other sources I have paired with the KSE1200.
 
Mar 13, 2021 at 1:56 PM Post #5,445 of 5,653

bobeau

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Are you basing your findings off Mojo being your source? I find Mojo a bit slow and more laid back than other sources I have paired with the KSE1200.

No, as I mentioned before I'm using the line out of my MBP. The mojo has a bit of a warm tilt, but we're talking orders of magnitude difference. The FR of this iem has been measured in many places - while it's an amazing listen from a detail perspective and your brain can certainly adapt, it has issues that no changing of source (which invariably have a miniscule impact on FR) is going to get even remotely close to fixing.

There was discussion a couple years ago where I brought up EQ in this thread and some people were not quite onboard, and I do agree that the posted corrections - which have been updated a couple times since, sound better but still off to me, which are certainly made from sighting posted FRs. The combo of the latest harman down low and oratory up top sound correct to me, moreso than the mostly Harman targetted IER-Z1R which I was pitting these against. And I was about to sell these in favor of the Z1Rs, but playing around with EQ they're certainly staying and the Sonys will be FS soon.
 
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