The Watercooler -- Impressions, philosophical discussion and general banter. Index on first page. All welcome.
Oct 4, 2023 at 1:05 AM Post #65,566 of 81,955
Early days for me but it's a stunningly beautiful pairup. I haven't heard the 21 Anni since I owned it last year and from memory the 23 seems to fix what was the only real issue with that IEM-- the bass. Previously it was what I would call "minimally acceptable" but here it's something of a highlight. Tighter, better extended, more present. Annihilator doesn't "need" lots of power but it sure does benefit from it. Trhough the RS8 on high gain/turbo it makes for a hell of an experience. RS8 has a really natural, analogue, authoritative yet liquid tonality that suits this IEM like a charm.

In other news we're two weeks into fall and two days past CanJam SoCal-- it's time for our seasonal 3 IEMs that own your heart at this moment poll. I'm not looking for your all time favorite 3 or anything (though of course you can submit those if you want). This poll is more meant to take the temp of the Watercooler at this moment in time.

Go!

Bass: Trifecta. Slams hard and deep.
Mids: Phonix OG. Emotion Pro Max.
Highs: Anni 23. The definition of treble extension.
 
Oct 4, 2023 at 1:27 AM Post #65,567 of 81,955
No. Save Supermoon none of CFA's IEMs have ever been very difficult to drive, though it's not crazy sensitive like Andro or Solaris were. My little SR35 makes them sing quite nicely.
That's nice to hear.
Do you know if there's any graph of the Bonneville yet?
 
Oct 4, 2023 at 1:31 AM Post #65,568 of 81,955
Maestro SE is clean controlled bass while XE6 is boosted the entire range of bass and mids. As much as Maestro SE is talked about having a lot of bass, it does so while actually being pretty balanced for mids and treble, focusing mostly on sub-bass. XE6 is extremely unbalanced and just sounds bassy the whole frequency range with far more mid-bass than Maestro. Upper regions are also elevated for perceived detail, the whole thing sounds far more unnatural than Maestro SE does.

Maestro SE is a great example of an IEM with a tuning profile that emphasizes sub-bass and upper mids without being shouty or fatiguing. It's excellent for female vocals but lacks meat in the mid-bass/lower mids to be an all rounder for me. YMMV etc.

Thanks a lot for these impressions. I was looking more on the Maestro SE comparisons.

I really want a comparison of Radon6 with Maestro SE. Among all the iems I have heard, I find bass on Radon6 to be the best. The bass on Radon6 is not too much but enough in quantity and really enjoyable. The overall tuning of RN6 is quite likeable. I find RN6 more towards my liking than the XE6.

From impressions gathered from few folks offline, the bass on Maestro SE is great but some prefer Maestro Mini tonally. And Grand Maestro is different beast altogether. What’s that thing(s) lacking from Maestro SE? Is the mids good on it and not eaten away by heavy bass? I also need to know if the soundstage is not average by any means on it. Does it sound grand?

Thanks for your inputs.
 
Oct 4, 2023 at 1:41 AM Post #65,569 of 81,955
Thanks a lot for these impressions. I was looking more on the Maestro SE comparisons.

I really want a comparison of Radon6 with Maestro SE. Among all the iems I have heard, I find bass on Radon6 to be the best. The bass on Radon6 is not too much but enough in quantity and really enjoyable. The overall tuning of RN6 is quite likeable. I find RN6 more towards my liking than the XE6.

From impressions gathered from few folks offline, the bass on Maestro SE is great but some prefer Maestro Mini tonally. And Grand Maestro is different beast altogether. What’s that thing(s) lacking from Maestro SE? Is the mids good on it and not eaten away by heavy bass? I also need to know if the soundstage is not average by any means on it. Does it sound grand?

Thanks for your inputs.
From impressions I have gathered regarding Maestro Mini, it is just a loose bass cannon and cannot compete with the others in discussion here from technical fronts.

Grand Maestro is more-or-less a Maestro SE with variable tuning and modules, but otherwise quite similar. At least from my experience, I do like the Maestro SE more than the GM, as the GM in vocal mode sounds very strange to me, while in the regular bass-heavy mode, it is very slightly less bass than MSE while also sounding very slightly leaner and brighter.

In my case where if I was to buy either IEM, it would be for bass mode and not really the vocal mode, in which case the MSE bass was more satisfying and less glare than Grand Maestro overall, being cheaper is also a pro here, so MSE for me, but perfectly understandable for anyone who wants GM for more versatility.
 
Oct 4, 2023 at 1:53 AM Post #65,570 of 81,955
IMR acoustics Titan
IKKO OH5 ASGARD
PENON 10TH ANNIVERSARY
 
Oct 4, 2023 at 2:00 AM Post #65,571 of 81,955
Top three on most regular rotation at the moment - I’m listening a lot via my desktop setup and absolutely loving the results, but noting below my preferred DAP synergy for each.
  1. Nostalgia Audio Camelot + Cayin N7
  2. UM MEST MKIII + Cayin N7
  3. Sound Rhyme SR8 + LPGT Ti
My Denon D9200 again via desktop gets a lot of my time, an incredible listening experience where I just sit back and immerse myself in the album - reminds me of sessions with my old beloved Traillii, a set I debate now and then buying again!
 
Oct 4, 2023 at 2:20 AM Post #65,572 of 81,955
it's time for our seasonal 3 IEMs that own your heart at this moment poll.
I vote chosing what i own:

Aroma Fei Wan
Fitear TG334
Aroma Thunder
 
Oct 4, 2023 at 2:41 AM Post #65,575 of 81,955
3 IEMs that own your heart at this moment
Going by what I own in no ranking

634ears Miroak-II Cocobolo
AüR Audio Neon Pro
Sound Rhyme DTE900

IMG_20230911_075923_932.jpg


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DSCF3574 1.jpg
 
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Oct 4, 2023 at 2:46 AM Post #65,576 of 81,955
Been exploring Hi-fi full size headphones lately and eliminated my IEM collection down to 2.

1. Annihilator (late 2022, is that same as 2023?)
2. XE6
3. Odyssey (Distant 3rd since I sold it)

Recently hooked up the Annihilator w/Brise Yatano Ultimate to Holo Bliss KTE and Holo Spring 3 KTE...... this is still truly one of the best sonic experiences I've heard and gives high end full-size a run for their money but of course in a more intimate way.
 
Oct 4, 2023 at 2:47 AM Post #65,577 of 81,955
In other news we're two weeks into fall and two days past CanJam SoCal-- it's time for our seasonal 3 IEMs that own your heart at this moment poll. I'm not looking for your all time favorite 3 or anything (though of course you can submit those if you want). This poll is more meant to take the temp of the Watercooler at this moment in time.

Go!
Anni 23
Rn6
MSE

I guess, I can't deny my bass cravings.
 
Oct 4, 2023 at 2:51 AM Post #65,578 of 81,955
Yes Caleb gave me that option too...but it almost felt sacrelige to take the very first "Chromatic" IEM out into the wild and not take the colorful option. And I love purple! I just need to find a good purple DAP to go along with it :D
Hiby R6 Pro II has a purple model and it sounds pretty good. :L3000::beerchug:
 
Oct 4, 2023 at 3:07 AM Post #65,580 of 81,955
3 IEM, które Ms that own your heart at this moment poll. I'm not looking for your all time favorite 3 or anything (though of course you can submit those if you want). This poll is more meant to take the temp of the Watercooler at this moment in time.
Subtonic Storm
Oriolus Traillii
Noble Ronin
 

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