The Watercooler -- Impressions, philosophical discussion and general banter. Index on first page. All welcome.
Apr 12, 2024 at 12:01 PM Post #86,371 of 90,122
The Watercooler seems like the most active thread, so I bet I'll get plenty of high quality recommendations here.

I've recently fallen in love with the HIFIMan HE1000 Stealth. I'm not a fan of bright headphones, but it walks the perfect line between warmth, transparency, and air. So now I'm looking for a high-end IEM which shares this balance. Huge soundstage, lots of detail and transparency, but in a laid-back sort of way, with utterly natural tonality. Vocals which are airy, but not thin, subtly organic, yet wonderfully vivid.

This is a balance of contradictions I thought impossible. Until I picked up the HEK Stealth, and found my new favorite signature. More than enough bass, but all the technical prowess I could ever dream of. I used to love warmer headphones, like the LCD-3F. But now that sounds veiled.

I'm still treble sensitive. Too bright and I'm out. It's a fine line, and I'm hoping you fine folk have some recommendations.
Funny enough - recently invested in a HE1000 Stealth for similar reasons. I personally voted for Noble Ronin, so you can give that a try.
I was surprised at some people calling it a mini-Raven or a reference EE model, because I (and everyone else I talked to) heard a lot of bass. :D I think the Triton's slow drop from bass to low-mids already opposes the ODIN's sound, which had an exponential drop from there. It's what gave it its leanness, in addition to the upper-midrange bump. The Triton definitely has a thick lushness to its sound. It does have an upper-mid rise to cut against it, but not to the degree of the ODIN or EVO IMO. Its treble was more linear and further extended too; smooth, and levelled just enough to sit in the mix; not elevated to a crisp degree like the Raven.
I do agree it's not a mini-Raven - the secret sauce feels different. I personally did relate to Triton being more reference/mastering because of how the mids and treble is relatively flat to the bass. It's more bass than what I typically lean towards, but it's so fun to listen to (and not too heavy a touch, which I thought Legend X/Evo were in relation).
 
Apr 12, 2024 at 12:07 PM Post #86,372 of 90,122
Funny enough - recently invested in a HE1000 Stealth for similar reasons. I personally voted for Noble Ronin, so you can give that a try.
I hesitate over the Ronin due to its lack of a dynamic driver for bass. I do love that physical impact. And I have had issues with the fit of Noble's older universals, like the Kaiser Encore. How does the Ronin fit, for you? Do it stick out a lot, or fit more or less flush with the ear?
 
Apr 12, 2024 at 12:09 PM Post #86,373 of 90,122
I hesitate over the Ronin due to its lack of a dynamic driver for bass. I do love that physical impact. And I have had issues with the fit of Noble's older universals, like the Kaiser Encore. How does the Ronin fit, for you? Do it stick out a lot, or fit more or less flush with the ear?
Ronins are not small but they rest perfectly in my smallish ears. They have very impactful bass, too, just with the slightly quicker decay of BAs. Immersive wide soundstage. They really are quite dynamic and powerful sounding FYI.
 
Apr 12, 2024 at 12:24 PM Post #86,374 of 90,122
I do agree it's not a mini-Raven - the secret sauce feels different. I personally did relate to Triton being more reference/mastering because of how the mids and treble is relatively flat to the bass. It's more bass than what I typically lean towards, but it's so fun to listen to (and not too heavy a touch, which I thought Legend X/Evo were in relation).
Hmm... I still think it's far too bassy to even consider for mixing or mastering. But, we'll agree to disagree there. :D

I hesitate over the Ronin due to its lack of a dynamic driver for bass. I do love that physical impact. And I have had issues with the fit of Noble's older universals, like the Kaiser Encore. How does the Ronin fit, for you? Do it stick out a lot, or fit more or less flush with the ear?
The Ronin is the only IEM in the past 2-3 years that I couldn't fit in my typically agreeable ears. If you're gonna go Ronin, see if they have a custom option.
 
Apr 12, 2024 at 12:24 PM Post #86,375 of 90,122
Great write-up. A very likely blind-buy for me. Very curious to hear your thoughts on the Flash cables as well, if you have the

Agreed with Alter Ego sounding exciting and new. I told a friend of mine this too, that Alter Ego sounds new and fresh. I'm also hard-pressed to fault it. Usually I have to find reasons to purchase something. In AE's case, I'm looking for reason's not to buy it. It's a compelling package.


I wasn't aware there was an upgraded cable offered. I'll probably be requesting this.


It's good to hear some AME Raven chatter! I quite liked it. It has one of the best treble responses I've heard, and I think it's competitive in a crowded $3k USD market. IMO it's the better of the two Ravens. For some reason it hasn't caught on though.
I asked about cable options when I purchased my Alter Ego from @MusicTeck and a silver cable was not offered. That said, I will try it with the Flash Acoustics Thanos to see what’s going on there.
 
Apr 12, 2024 at 12:27 PM Post #86,376 of 90,122
I asked about cable options when I purchased my Alter Ego from @MusicTeck and a silver cable was not offered. That said, I will try it with the Flash Acoustics Thanos to see what’s going on there.
I tried this pairing at MT. It results in a thicker sound which I liked. I also like the stock cable so it's just a matter of preference/mood.
 
Apr 12, 2024 at 12:28 PM Post #86,377 of 90,122

Coreir seems to have good synergy with specific iems only. Would love to hear the iems that people here have found good synergy with coreir.
Singularity with brass. I have not liked them so much with anything else in my collection though I have yet to try them with Titan or Alter Ego.
 
Apr 12, 2024 at 12:33 PM Post #86,378 of 90,122
I tried this pairing at MT. It results in a thicker sound which I liked. I also like the stock cable so it's just a matter of preference/mood.
I'd be curious about the Ultron too
 
Apr 12, 2024 at 12:35 PM Post #86,379 of 90,122
And this paragraph shows why Rockwell75 is our leader. If you can not post something informative or positive, just go somewhere else.

on the home front, its Friday, the end of my week if I was still working and the day of the week that I start and stop the burn in on new IEMs. I removed the ISN Neo 3 and opened the Himalaya box. I installed W1 tips and switched out the nice stock cable for the NiceHck Grey Ghost. I connected to my L & P W4 and let it play. Two minutes later I inserted the Himalayas and........WOW, just WOW!!!!!. Guys, you need a pair of these. Then you can sell your high priced IEMs that the Himalayas blow out of the water.
Please note that these IEMs have only cooked a few minutes.

Man, you've got me highly curious to try this out.... I currently have the Shanling MG800, and it is so good as another single DD that I've stopped trying out anything else.

Top 5 are;

Mimalaya
ISN Neo 3
Fir E12
Sound Rhyme 5
Oriveti 00200

The Himalaya is your top of the heap?? That really says something with the E12 there in the middle of the list...
 
Apr 12, 2024 at 12:42 PM Post #86,380 of 90,122
Some/many do, especially smaller items like IEMs. The ones that don't usually offer free shipping (on top of whatever show discount they might be offering). So while you may have to wait a day or two for the post, that minor time penalty is well worth some of the discounts to be had.
Great thanks for your reply looking forward to Canjam London
 
Apr 12, 2024 at 12:44 PM Post #86,381 of 90,122
Some of the expensive models have the same drivers though 🤭 looking at you CFA!

Not sure what IEM you're talking about-- CFA's drivers are all custom developed or spec'd as far as I know.

Once upon a time, around the time @tgx78 was trying to make an earbud with a planar driver, he was in touch with the company that made said driver that "much less expensive IEMs use" and he found that the Supermoon uses a custom spec'd model of the Gen 2 of the driver you're talking about.

I do not know about the planar driver but on BA tech you can find things out by stalking Knowles / Sonion press releases :stuck_out_tongue_closed_eyes:

https://investor.knowles.com/news/n...Dual-Diaphragm-Balanced-Armature/default.aspx

So this release from 2022 suggests A&K and CFA had shared access to the 'dual diaphragm' BA driver
 
Apr 12, 2024 at 12:46 PM Post #86,382 of 90,122
I'd be curious about the Ultron too
I don't have super detailed impressions of Ultron but here goes.

I demoed it with Alter Ego off a 320MAX. Compared to Alter Ego's stock cable, there are improvements to resolution, staging, and overall techs. It maintains Alter Ego's neutral warm tone from what I remember. It's less thick/warm toned than Thanos. I think its techs were roughly relative to Beat Audio's Cyclone 8W and Billow MKII 4W which are priced higher.

People have said that Ultron has some bass bloom and some unique coloration as well, so keep that in mind. Could be a good or a bad thing based on the pairing.

I think Ultron's techs are really good for the price. It's a solid cable overall. If you're thinking about buying it, I have no issue recommending it. This of course depends a little on what you're looking for specifically.
 
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Apr 12, 2024 at 12:58 PM Post #86,383 of 90,122
The Himalayas are a one 10mm driver IEM. they are very balanced and are more detail oriented than all the DD Iems I own and have heard, but not overly so. They are very musical and comfortable.
I saw @Scubadevils mentioned Himalayas can beat those IEMs that are twice as expensive, I lost my interest since I don't want to add something simply it's a bargain. But from your description, it piques my interest again.
 
Apr 12, 2024 at 12:59 PM Post #86,384 of 90,122
Well, atm. I am very interested in the Noble TWS line. Any one wanna share some thoughts on the Apollo and Triumph?
 
Apr 12, 2024 at 1:20 PM Post #86,385 of 90,122
I saw @Scubadevils mentioned Himalayas can beat those IEMs that are twice as expensive, I lost my interest since I don't want to add something simply it's a bargain. But from your description, it piques my interest again.

I’ll add more context over the weekend but I actually enjoy the Himalaya more than Svanar - $300 vs $2000.
 

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