Shure SE846 Impressions Thread
Dec 4, 2019 at 12:13 AM Post #20,521 of 22,942
Odd, first off, I own and adore my pair of SE846's.
Okay, just for giggles I went on Amazon on Monday and found you could buy a brand new pair of 846's for $629 if you accepted that it came with a wireless adapter. I don't know or care much about wireless adapters so I don't care enough about the details of what it is. But $629 for it and the 846's with all the normal cables.
Or, if you just want the 846's without the wireless adapter it was $899. Hmmmm. Odd.
Apparently the normal price for the wireless/846 combo is $699. Hmmmm
Dec 4, 2019 at 12:51 AM Post #20,522 of 22,942
Maybe they're putting the BT1 bundle on sale to clear out stock as they've fairly recently replaced it with the BT2 bundle. The BT2 bundle is the same but comes with the BT2 cable, which offers longer battery life, better sound quality, and AptX. I find the sound from the BT1 cable disappointing but I love the SE846s themselves and use them with a Fiio LC-2.5D cable and ES100, which can actually drive them properly unlike the BT1 cable.
Dec 9, 2019 at 7:13 AM Post #20,523 of 22,942
+1 on the comparison. N5005, 846s , and UMPRO50 are all in the same ballpark.

Ok, so I have had my 846's for little over a week now. Still in the honeymoon period of course but happy to provide a little comparison to the N5005's which I had for over 18months. My listening preferences are varied. Worth noting I enjoy a slightly bass bias setup.

I also have a desktop setup which consists of Denon D7200 and the ever popular 58x. Both are connected to my PC via usb and custom XLR balanced cables, using the Fostex HPA4BL. I probably use the 58x more, as they are just so easy to use. However, when in the mood, nothing puts a smile on my face as good as the D7200 does.

Anyhow, back to the IEMs. 99% time I pair my IEMs to my smartphone when on the go, in the car, or in bed. Currently I have the Samsung Note 10 plus using the FIIO BTR3 (soon to be upgraded to BTR5 when my pre-order is fulfilled). I don't use these IEMs for the gym or running. Whilst I am sure you can, I prefer to use a cheap bluetooth set that i can throw around/ get wet and not worry about.

Packaging/ presentation:
At face value, the N5005 present a more premium/ luxury appearance by quite a distance. Both seem well built. Whilst the N5005 do give off a more luxury vibe, imo, it should not influence buying decision when comparing the two.

The bundled cables with the N5005 look and feel better quality. I actually enjoyed having the in line remote/ mic from the N5005 as I used this plenty of times for work conference calls. The 846 cable doesn't look as premium and is definitely more stiff meaning not as comfortable, either. That said, sound quality wise, I can't make out any difference. I will probably look into a custom cable in the near future but i'm not in an immediate hurry.

Both are reasonably small IEM's and are equally very comfortable. I was able to achieve a secure fit with both and can listen for hours. No discernible difference. I would consider my ear size average.

Both sound excellent and are an absolute pleasure in their own right. But they are different.

The N5005's appear more reference to my ear. Bass is detailed and can be powerful, but a secure seal is absolutely crucial. Playing around with the filters does make a difference but they are (rightly so i guess) very subtle. I settled on the bass filter after a month or so just using the default reference. The signature note of N5005's is the clarity and bright highs but this is never fatiguing or too much - just took a little time getting used to. The 846 does everything very well for my tastes, just with more bass. Maybe at the cost of clarity if you were to make a direct comparison? I'm not sure, and, if so, it is not something I feel I am missing.

In hindsight, I should have bought the 846's first time round given my listening preferences but alas i went for the newer shinier model not having the opportunity to test the two first hand. That said, if I was to never to listen to the 846 and keep the N5005 I would have remained happy. Just a shame I had an issue with the earbud failing on me twice (as I have mentioned in earlier posts).

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Dec 17, 2019 at 6:02 PM Post #20,527 of 22,942
Looking for a portable DAC/Amp for my SE846 andI have in my mind IFI xSDS or McIntosh MHA50. Will be much appreciate for any suggestions.
I'll second the ES100 recommendation, with one caveat: Its spiritual successor, the Qudelix 5K, is coming out soon -- it's made by a different company, but the ES100's lead engineer, wslee, designed it. Anyway, the ES100 drives my SE846s better than anything else I've tried them with. It sounds neutral and balanced, though when I listen to certain kinds of music I like to use the ES100's built-in EQ to turn up the bass and sub-bass, which really kicks on the SE846s. It's also one of a very few Bluetooth DACs to support the LDAC codec.
Dec 17, 2019 at 9:19 PM Post #20,528 of 22,942
Looking for a portable DAC/Amp for my SE846 andI have in my mind IFI xSDS or McIntosh MHA50. Will be much appreciate for any suggestions.
Try the Radsone es100 in balanced. They are a match. My se846 with blue filters and spin fit tips are my daily commute headphones. Everything in ldac from my s9+
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Dec 18, 2019 at 6:37 AM Post #20,529 of 22,942
I've had my 846s for coming up to 18 months - 2 years and have used them almost daily for the gym, underneath motorcycle helmets, sleeping in, and whilst out and about and many a time time I'll just stuff them in a pocket without a case. Not experienced any issues with durability (yet), and the clear shells don't show any scratches, not least any I can see with the naked eye anyhow. Obviously this is all anecdotal so won't mean a great deal to those that have had problems, but as there's a few chaps recently joined the 846 owners' club I wanted to dispel the notion that they're inherently fragile. Mine have been through the roughest conditions of all my iems and have held up the best. Even the OEM cables which seem to get chastised on Amazon reviews for their longevity are still without fault. The only thing that's broken was the straight 3.5mm jack on an aftermarket cable which bent when it got caught as I stood whilst the 846s were connected to my phone in my jeans pocket.
Dec 24, 2019 at 9:26 PM Post #20,531 of 22,942
I listened to Clear 846’s; fresh out of the box. They sounded noticeably thinner than the Bronze 846’s I bought a week ago.They too were purchased new. The Bronze 846’s have a metal cocoon inside the plastic casing. So maybe that’s the difference in sound. Any thoughts?
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Dec 24, 2019 at 9:29 PM Post #20,532 of 22,942
I listened to clear 846’s; fresh out of the box. They sounded noticeable thinner than the Bronze 846’s I bought a week ago.They too were purchased new. The Bronze 846’s have a metal cocoon inside the plastic casing. So maybe that’s the difference in sound. Any thoughts?

Sounds like you are hearing what you see, a common form of expectation bias.
Dec 25, 2019 at 10:25 AM Post #20,534 of 22,942
Sounds like you are hearing what you see, a common form of expectation bias.
It's unlikely that any two IEMs perform exactly the same. There's always some unit variation - even between L and R channels on the same headphone.

Look at the work that @unispeed did in this thread: A one mm shift in the placement of the filters make a noticeable difference.

@Solsticemuzix - you might want to try adjusting your filters slightly.
Dec 25, 2019 at 11:10 AM Post #20,535 of 22,942
Could you take a photo of both (bronze+clear) showing this detail?

I just looked again. My Bronze 535’s have what “appears” to be a metal cocoon of some type, not my Bronze 846’s. So wow, thank you & please excuse me on that. Perhaps it’s just a base coat of paint or primer used on the 846’s interior shell that gives off a metal sub-casing illusion. Also, again, toggling between the Bronze 535’s & the Bronze 846’s obviously confused me & didn’t help my “case” :) So, again, excuse me on that & thank you for helping me to at least “clear” that up :) I say, at least, cos’ the Bronze 846’s still sound way better to my ears. The Bronze 846’s seat better too, IMHO. Even the black wiring is more malleable, out of box, by comparison, to me. It’s a shame b/c I prefer the look of the Clear 846’s. Long story short, I’ll just keep the Bronze 846’s and return the Ferrari Engine Display one’s (Clear 846’s).

I can’t figure out how to insert a pic. So here’s a link to a pic of my Bronze 535’s & 846’s. I didn’t snap or include a pic of the Clear 846’s.


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