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Sony's New 2014 flagship IEM - XBA Z5

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  1. nc8000 Contributor
    They might just not be diy repairable
    barondla likes this.
  2. barondla
    True. If someone sends their defective Z5 in to Sony, will they repair it?
  3. alvintancy
    Just finished reading all 320 pages, also wanna add that I just got the Z5 last week.

    Initial impression was lows were bloated and mids kind of muddy with SE via my LG V30+. Tried the stocked balanced cable with my Diyed dual female 3.5mm to 4 pin Xlr, way much better. As for now I'm still using SE for listening. SE also sounds good.... if sufficient Power is given to the Z5's.

    As mentioned in the previous post, requires at least 100mw to drive the Z5's. To me the DAC used, also plays a part, CirrusLogic, Sabre and AKM helps to tightened and tamed the lower frequencies and in general across the entire spectrum whereas BurrBrown which has a default warm signature isn't that ideal.

    Still burning in the Z5's, most of the time, its being powered by my Alo Audio Island, more than sufficient to drive the Z5's, be it SE or Balanced.

    Also using my IBasso DX120 for the Z5's, no issues with SE and even better with balanced.

    Planning a Silver cable upgrade with the recommended MMCX connector with the Sony's proprietary groove/slot, most probably next month.

    Also had a chance to auditioned the new Sony's M7 and M9, personally I luv the M9 as my music genre is more on Jazz, Blues and Classical.

    Now waiting for the IER-ZIR to be released before deciding if I should go ahead.....
    Last edited: Nov 20, 2018
    kaufman2018 likes this.
  4. kaufman2018
    Great information. I purchased a Z5 too, then listened to the M7 and M9--I was surprised that the M7 and M9 sounded so different from each other during my limited audition. I love the Z5 and did not A-B it directly with the M7/M9. I am thinking about buying the MUC-M12SB1 cable for the balanced output of my Sony NW-WM1A. I have a $19.99 amazon.com 4.4mm cable but it doesn't sound that much different than the stock SE cable, but I am burning it in now for a better A-B.
  5. Love Music
    Does anyone know how the z5 fairs against the empire ears evr?
  6. Soundsgoodtome
    Anyone know of a direct bluetooth cable for the Z5 like plussound's set? They have yet to put out a Z5 type mmcx connection
  7. Redcarmoose
    I had the Magaosi Bluetooth MMCX cable but never tried it with the Z5. They may be getting better all the time, but typically the Z5 likes more power. Though it would maybe sound OK......guessing? Typically you would want to do the MMCX switch over and leave it as is. Not a good thing to be daily switching the MMCX connecters. IMO

    Also due to problematic sound isolation issues; the Z5 would not be my first choice for an out and about Bluetooth IEM? Just saying.........
    Last edited: Jan 2, 2019
  8. kaufman2018
    I agreed—don’t change or disconnect t cables with the Z5, because the connectors will fail.

    With that being said I would like a cable recommendation for the balanced option. I have ordered the Sony option with the Kimber Kable design but have not been able to try it out yet.
  9. Redcarmoose
    So you have a balanced Kimber on the way and want an alternative choice?

    I had a chance to pick up the 4.4mm to MMCX Kimber but purchased the Sony MUC-M12NB1 instead. Though after using a different Kimber cable with dramatic improvements with the Z1R it makes me wildly curious.
  10. kaufman2018
    I am sorry to clarify, I purchased the Sony MUC-M12SB1–co-designed with Kimber Kable, but sourced/made by Sony.

    The Kimber 4.4mm to MMCX does seem / look delicious, but I’d need a truly Reference IEM to do that cable justice, the Z5 maybe worthy, but I’d like to try the new Sony Flagship IEMs first.
    Last edited: Jan 2, 2019
  11. Love Music
    Does anyone know how the z5 compares to other hybrids like the oriolus mkii as I'm thinking of maybe selling it to get the z5
  12. Redcarmoose
    So you got the MUC-M12SB1. Nice! Note link below. I’m interested in that cable too.

    I ended up with the Sony MUC-M12NB1 which is a made in China 4.4mm plug MMCX cable. It’s actually newer than the Kimber. But it costs less. It has a nice form and easy to use. Though after using it a while I’m curious as to what the Kimber would do for the Z5? It seems I would want something a little brighter? Which is funny too as we had a member describe the same issue in this thread with the Sony MUC-M12NB1? He may have been right after all. What’s fascinating is I paired the Sony MUC-M12NB1 with the BGVP DM6 and it was great?

    So every IEM can be altered a little depending on the cable and sound your after.
    Last edited: Jan 4, 2019
    kaufman2018 likes this.
  13. kaufman2018
    That’s awesome-the BGVP DM6 is the next IEM that I purchased after the Z5. I have not opened the DM6 yet or cable 4.4mm cable to compare.

    I’m glad to hear the Sony 4.4mm works well with DM6.
    Redcarmoose likes this.
  14. costas23
    I have the original Oriolus and the XBA-Z5 and they are both my favorite phones (even compared to more expensive stuff). I would say the Oriolus is the better allrounder and more exciting/fun overall.... the Z5 is warmer, slower and smoother. It depends on what music you listen to and what mood you are in. I kept both.
    I would not suggest selling the Oriolus for the z5 however unless there is something you dislike about the Oriolus
    Love Music likes this.
  15. Hinomotocho
    Has anyone thought of getting the IER-M7? Not a scratch on the Z5's dynamic bass but very good for BA.
    I tried the iBasso IT04 because it's hybrid but I'm not sure my ears would totally adjust to the brighter sound.
    Oh how I wish the Z5 had a design closer to the M7/M9.
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