Sleek SA6: Can I do better for $200?
Oct 27, 2008 at 9:17 PM Post #16 of 45

schneller

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Quote:

Originally Posted by Pianist /img/forum/go_quote.gif
I think Q-jays are about on par with if not better than the SA6 and cost less. Here, I'll jot down some pros and cons of each below, judging from my own ears. Keep in mind though, that I only auditioned the Q-jays for about 10 minutes overall, while I had the SA6 for over a month now:

Sleek Audio SA6:

Pros:

- deep, tight and neutral bass response that doesn't overpower the rest of the frequency spectrum
- warm, detailed and musical midrange that is pleasant to listen to
- well detailed and extended highs
- treble and bass quantity can be adjusted somewhat using the different bass/treble tips
- good imaging and instrument positioning
- good isolation and comfort, especially when using the Shure black olives
- very little microphonics when worn over the ear

Cons:

- build quality seems questionable and the treble tubes can detach rather easily from the earphone when removing the sleeves
- the sound lacks some depth and especially dynamics compared to multiple driver IEMs and quality dynamic driver headphones (their most serious flaw IMO)
- can be a bit thin sounding at times, again compared to multiple driver IEMs and dynamic drivers
-the midrange is warmer the neutral and does not sound quite as natural as on the Q-jays
- may not fit very deep into the ear depending on the shape and size of the ear canals, making wearing them over-the-ear difficult (the cable keeps on slipping from the ear to the side)

Q-jays:

Pros:

- deep, tight and decently punchy bass response
- excellent, natural midrange reproduction
- well extended, sparkling highs
- excellent detail throughout the frequency spectrum, maybe even better than SA6
- good imaging/instrument positioning
- decent depth and dynamics
- incredibly small size makes these a really comfortable IEM, even more comfortable than SA6, at least for my ears
- build quality is great

Cons:

- soundstage can sound compressed and very in-the-head at times
- the highs can become a bit too much and fatiguing after a while
- the bass fades away rather quickly: it hits you and then it's gone without a trace
- the overall sound is a bit thinner and more analytical than some other dual-driver and triple-driver IEMs out there, but definitely more dynamic and engaging than that of SA6 IMO

Some other possible alternative in that price range include Klipsch Custom 2, the all new Sennheiser IE6, Futuresonics Atrio M5/M8, Ultimate Ears Super.fi 5 (the new non-pro version is better), as well as Head-Direct RE1. However, out of all of those I only owned and listened to the RE1s, so I can't really comment on any others. Personally I think that Head-Direct RE1 requires an amp to shine and sounds quite dull and boring without one, plus the ergonomics aren't that great on the RE1 - the cables are quite noisy, and you can't wear the 'phones over the ear, plus the cable is a little too short for tall users and becomes too long with the extension.

Hope this will be of some help.
biggrin.gif



Thanks for the comparison.

Though the highs on the Q-Jays could be an issue for me.

I was considering the SA6, SF5Pros, SF5s, and Q-Jays from the get-go. The SF5Pros look a little dorky to me, so I'm pretty sure they are no longer in the running. The build-quality of the SA6 is my biggest concern.
 
Oct 27, 2008 at 9:22 PM Post #17 of 45

schneller

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Pianist: I see you list the SA6 in your current gear. Where are the Q-Jays?
 
Oct 27, 2008 at 9:51 PM Post #18 of 45

pseudohippy

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Your good to go with the SA6 and the E260, dont quote me but the SA6 are around ~60ohm and keep the hiss from the E260 down. My SE530 are not good with the E260 but sound terrific with the Cowon D2. The SA6 sound best when used with Cowon D2>fiio>Sa6. E260 + fiio + SA6 also sounds good.

Im not experienced with the q-jays or most others being talked about but still wanted to answer your question on the e260. Perhaps they are all better then the SA6 like they said but the SA6 do sound fantastic. I liked them a bit better then M8 for sure.

Im ordering the W-1 wireless kit for the Sleeks immediately after this post. My wife litterally called me to tell me our government stimulus check just showed up today. The W-1 is said so far to add lots of bass to SA6 but also adds some floor noise (yuck).
 
Oct 27, 2008 at 10:25 PM Post #19 of 45

Pianist

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Quote:

Originally Posted by schneller /img/forum/go_quote.gif
Pianist: I see you list the SA6 in your current gear. Where are the Q-Jays?


I don't own Q-jays, but I auditioned them a few times.
 
Oct 27, 2008 at 10:36 PM Post #21 of 45

digivate

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I don't know what the SA6 sound like, but I'd just like to throw in my opinion of the q-Jays ... avoid them like the plague.

Mine sounded poor out of the box (complete lack of bass, way too bright and forward, something not quite right with the treble ... almost like a lisp at times).

They then went on to become completely distorted after 4-5 weeks, and when I returned them for a repair the customer service was useless. I was told that it was probably a problem with the filters (but it shouldn't have been as the filters were changed a couple of times and my ears are as clean as a whistle).

After 6 weeks I was just given a refund (minus the original £6 postage postage cost and another £6 it cost me to return them by insured Special Delivery) without any reason given why they weren't repaired or replaced.

To be honest I was glad to get a refund (though I think I hould have been refunded the postage costs as well) as I'd pretty much come to hate the q-Jays and Jens in general by that point.

I've had far more enjoyable sounding earphones for less money than the q-Jays, but I've now upgraded to the Westone UM2 which are superb.

I understand that some SA6 owners have had problems with build quality (issues which Sleek Audio might have resolved by now) but SA's customer service is apparently very good.

I'm sure for every person who's had a q-Jay experice like mine, there are probably 50 people who've had no problems and love them, but this is one customer who will never return to Jays/Jens.
 
Oct 27, 2008 at 11:12 PM Post #22 of 45

Pianist

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Quote:

Originally Posted by digivate /img/forum/go_quote.gif
I don't know what the SA6 sound like, but I'd just like to throw in my opinion of the q-Jays ... avoid them like the plague.

Mine sounded poor out of the box (complete lack of bass, way too bright and forward, something not quite right with the treble ... almost like a lisp at times).

They then went on to become completely distorted after 4-5 weeks, and when I returned them for a repair the customer service was useless. I was told that it was probably a problem with the filters (but it shouldn't have been as the filters were changed a couple of times and my ears are as clean as a whistle).

After 6 weeks I was just given a refund (minus the original £6 postage postage cost and another £6 it cost me to return them by insured Special Delivery) without any reason given why they weren't repaired or replaced.

To be honest I was glad to get a refund (though I think I hould have been refunded the postage costs as well) as I'd pretty much come to hate the q-Jays and Jens in general by that point.

I've had far more enjoyable sounding earphones for less money than the q-Jays, but I've now upgraded to the Westone UM2 which are superb.

I understand that some SA6 owners have had problems with build quality (issues which Sleek Audio might have resolved by now) but SA's customer service is apparently very good.

I'm sure for every person who's had a q-Jay experice like mine, there are probably 50 people who've had no problems and love them, but this is one customer who will never return to Jays/Jens.



I am sorry to hear about your bad experience with Jays, but as you yourself are saying - if most people love their q-jays and don't complain about customer service, why should these IEMs be avoided? I have heard similar stories about lemon IEMs and other headphones and negative comments about customer service from many other companies, but that doesn't mean that those companies should all be avoided as well. **** happens sometimes, but that's just how life is - nothing is perfect and yet we have to live with that.
 
Oct 28, 2008 at 12:23 AM Post #23 of 45

dookiex

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I still vote EX700s, $230 is the current street price. The sibilance really is negligible as I've been using them for quite some time now (they have smoothed out quite a bit, I didn't really start listening to them until I had around 100 hours on them, they are now around the 200 hours mark). To be honest, Etymotics were a lot harsher which was even more prevalent due to the lack of any kind of bass impact.
 
Oct 28, 2008 at 2:03 AM Post #26 of 45

schneller

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Quote:

Originally Posted by dookiex /img/forum/go_quote.gif
I still vote EX700s, $230 is the current street price. The sibilance really is negligible as I've been using them for quite some time now (they have smoothed out quite a bit, I didn't really start listening to them until I had around 100 hours on them, they are now around the 200 hours mark). To be honest, Etymotics were a lot harsher which was even more prevalent due to the lack of any kind of bass impact.


My first IEMs were Sonys...they are just too mass market for me...same with something from Bose, Philips, Denon, and maybe even Klipsch. The companies just seem to specialize in this stuff (Sleek, Shure, Westone, UE, Etymotic, Sennheiser, etc.)
 
Oct 28, 2008 at 2:04 AM Post #27 of 45

emelius

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^^please don't compare klipsch to bose...even indirectly
smily_headphones1.gif
...


the klipsch image x5 is $199.99 shipped at soundearphones.com after the kl20 coupon...

it's on the high end of your $200 limit, but might be worth a look/listen...

--even cheaper on ebay if you dare (i wouldn't)...
 
Oct 28, 2008 at 2:40 AM Post #28 of 45

dookiex

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The EX700s are in a class of their own in the Sony line. I haven't enjoyed Sony in-ear phones that came before the EX700 so if you were to base your past experience of Sony schneller, then that would be a very big misinforming view. The "specialized" companies to tell you the truth don't really compare all that favourably to the EX700s until you go up to their flagship models. SA6 is anemic in bass and the soundstage is very very small, Etymotics simply don't sound right for musicality, Westone UM2s, Klipsch line, and the Sennheiser CX series are all compromised with either veiled details or lack of details, the soundstage also doesn't compare. UE and Shures aren't all that great until you start getting up to their top tier models.

The thing is, most of us start with the standard mainstream brands, usually the cheaper stuff, and then judge the mainstream brands based on the cheaper stuff we have from them. That's just plain silly, the mainstream brands have a wider selection and since they are mainstream, they do put out a lot more junk on the market because people usually base their purchases on price. It doesn't mean that their entire line is crud. Exception being Bose, they just overcharge for everything.
 
Oct 28, 2008 at 3:11 AM Post #29 of 45

scytheavatar

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Quote:

Originally Posted by dookiex /img/forum/go_quote.gif
The EX700s are in a class of their own in the Sony line. I haven't enjoyed Sony in-ear phones that came before the EX700 so if you were to base your past experience of Sony schneller, then that would be a very big misinforming view. The "specialized" companies to tell you the truth don't really compare all that favourably to the EX700s until you go up to their flagship models. SA6 is anemic in bass and the soundstage is very very small, Etymotics simply don't sound right for musicality, Westone UM2s, Klipsch line, and the Sennheiser CX series are all compromised with either veiled details or lack of details, the soundstage also doesn't compare. UE and Shures aren't all that great until you start getting up to their top tier models.

The thing is, most of us start with the standard mainstream brands, usually the cheaper stuff, and then judge the mainstream brands based on the cheaper stuff we have from them. That's just plain silly, the mainstream brands have a wider selection and since they are mainstream, they do put out a lot more junk on the market because people usually base their purchases on price. It doesn't mean that their entire line is crud. Exception being Bose, they just overcharge for everything.



Are you sure that the Sleeks don't have soundstage? Cause the Sleeks has one of the biggest soundstage of any IEM, and that's a big reason for getting them.
 
Oct 28, 2008 at 4:06 AM Post #30 of 45

ljcii

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Quote:

Originally Posted by scytheavatar /img/forum/go_quote.gif
Are you sure that the Sleeks don't have soundstage? Cause the Sleeks has one of the biggest soundstage of any IEM, and that's a big reason for getting them.


Do they really have that?
 

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