Audio Random IEM / Headphone Rants

santhoshr

Active Member
Disciple
Nov 17, 2011
117
18
32
37
Chennai
santhoshr.posterous.com
@santhoshr
As for PRAT, I know it is subjective. An old head-fi thread has all the definitions you can get. If not PRAT, let's call it just... "it" :p. FX700 has got "it", the rest including EX1000 don't.
My definition goes like this: each earphone PRaT differs, it suffers heavily when you switch earphones and once brain burn-in (yes each time) settles you tap foot! Even the most laid back or reference/monitoring sound sig earphones is foot tap-able provided you listened for quite some time without switching. So EX1000 too has PRaT! again IMHO :)
 

esanthosh

Well-Known Member
Veteran
Jan 3, 2010
2,041
260
123
Coimbatore
Nopes! My definition is different. What makes me tap the foot is different from 'enjoyment'. I love my EX1000. I cannot describe how much I love CK10 when it separates those bits of information present in music. But those are different from the feeling I get with FX700. I 'rock out' with FX700, but may be quietly enjoying with a smile when I am with EX1000. That is my own definition of PRAT. It needs speed, definition, energy and a certain "it". I am certain I am not wrong because like all 'audiophile' terms, definitions can be very personal :p
 
  • Like
Reactions: sardar17

santhoshr

Active Member
Disciple
Nov 17, 2011
117
18
32
37
Chennai
santhoshr.posterous.com
To me foot tapping or shaking head or b##ty shaking! is one of many forms of enjoyment. Now should we venture into definition of enjoyment ? ;-)
PRaT is surely mojo term, and individualistic...so is any audiophile definitions. Surely our tastes differ! You like jokers review but not to me, but I enjoy reading ClieOs.
 
  • Like
Reactions: PristineNote

esanthosh

Well-Known Member
Veteran
Jan 3, 2010
2,041
260
123
Coimbatore
Yes, we should. There are various levels of enjoyment. To get me excited to a level where I tap my foot needs vastly different things than the one that makes me quietly sit and listen.

Audiophilia is over rated. But, at the end of the day, it is a bunch of common terms useful for communicating what we hear. I still prefer it over exchanging various graphs and measurements ;)

I not only like Joker's review, but I have followed him long enough to decipher from his writing if am IEM would sound right for me or not. The important thing is to find your own 'ljokerl'.
 
Last edited:

sardar17

Active Member
Adept
Dec 16, 2013
209
43
41
all right ppl,i just emailed hifinage about their dealership on hifiman and the reply was

"

We've been told by HiFiMan that they will list us on their website from January, 2014."
 

kenpachiroks

Active Member
Disciple
Dec 15, 2009
145
89
42
Might as well update my impressions on the LG Quadbeat 2 (post burn in).

Fit update:
I still have a tough time getting a good fit. The nozzles are too short and overly angled for my ears. But I've gotten used to the 4 step procedure(developed after extensive trial and error) to get a good fit. There is a simpler 2 step procedure intended for casual listening.

Comfort update:
My fit problem forces me to use the HiFiman Bi flanges. These give me pressure problems over time and somehow the rim of the first flange tickles the inside of my ear. Sigh. I tried my sawed-off complys but hated what they did to the sound. So I'm limited to short listening sessions until I get some better tips. :(

Sound update:

I'll just repost my initial impressions(italicized) followed by the update.

The treble is special. It's not as smooth as the RE400 but not sharp enough to irritate me(I like my treble very smooth). Suppose you're listening to a track,and you know when(in the track) a crescendo of potentially sibilant treble will hit. Judging from the treble sparkle and clarity in the rest of the track you scrunch your eyes in anticipation. But it doesn't happen.
"In-perfect-measure" should sum that up
I'm very impressed with the detail and airiness in the highs. They don't sound like a budget pair at all.

The mids are nothing to write home about(blame the RE400). But they complement the excellent treble well. I don't seem to be getting all the details as I do from my RE400. Also there's a lack of overall dynamics. I haven't listened to enough music to nitpick but I expect them to handle most of it well enough.
The soundstage is impressive(again, with the right fit). It conveys a good sense of space that feels dry and empty at the rarest of times. However, it is much much wider than it is deeper.

Now on to the minuses
This is how I fell the bass was tuned: LG asked iSound(?) to wow them with a budget audiophile iem to go with the audiophile friendly G2. The team tuned it to be fairly neutral with great extention at both ends. No sub-bass roll off. And a hint of a V shaped sig to keep things interesting.
Satisfied, they present it to the G2 team who go ":meh:, Why is this so boring? Where's the boom-boom?". Head of the LG G2 team proceeds to add a dollop of vaguely placed mid-bass dough on an exquisite cake.

The bass feels ill placed. Like a block that's important but doesn't fit. Like it was added as an afterthought. I can't put a finger on it. Maybe with more listening, I will be able to.
The mid-bass is "eccentric":wacky:, is the best way to put it. I think EQing will iron it out a bit. But it will be tricky.
The sub-bass is controlled and unobtrusive. (I would love to have this sub-bass on my RE400s)


The treble is still fantastic. It somehow manages to sing without ever getting sibilant. They're like safety scissors. Can go to town on paper and keeps those stupid children from using themselves as craft material.
Now do I like it enough to prefer it over the overly smooth RE400 treble? ....nnngh.. No. I cannot say that. I love how the RE400 treble sits back and does its thing with aplomb. I don't feel like the QB2 is giving me any more detail. But it emphasizes the same details I get from the RE400. I guess I'm just not a treble head.....yet. In this phase of my audiophile journey, I'm a basshead partially converted to a mid-head.:D
But there is a scenario where I'd reach for the QB2. I do like the way it shreds through EDM and trance. This kind of music calls for some bite and more-than-needed clarity which the QB2 does deliver. The RE400 with its sub-bass roll off and smooth treble cannot cut it.

Has the burn-in cured the eccentric mid-bass? Well....no. But it has certainly tried. The mid-bass is slightly well behaved now. It still feels misplaced to me. But it isn't as frown-worthy as before.
The sub-bass is right up my alley when it comes to presence and rumble. I wish I could copy and paste it onto the RE400. I don't feel as if it has changed much with burn in. Any perceived difference could be a side effect of the better control in the mid-bass.

Does a simple EQ fix it?

I had no hope out of the box. As my gripe was not limited to the quantity.
I tried a narrow(later wider) drop of around 5-6dB in the 100-125Hz region.
What's happening here? o_O I found myself paying more attention to the differences I felt in the upper midrange and treble. It felt like the midbass vibrations were limiting the driver's capability. I really didn't expect the EQ to cause such a global change. The mid-bass didn't gain as much control as I would have liked. It continued to do its thing albeit in a more subdued way(good enough for me). The upper mids stepped forward a bit(no complaints, I actually welcomed it as the treble was hogging the sig).
Much to my disappointment, the treble would occasionally step out of line. And 'occasionally' became 'often' with EDM and its associated genres(the one thing it did better than my RE400s). Don't get me wrong, the treble isn't peaky at all. It just isn't to my personal liking. There may be many who will rave about "the awesome boost in treble".
Overall, this does flatten out the V quite a bit.(maybe an extra -dB or two on the mid-bass). What I felt like I ended up with is an occasional....."nike logo" like response(Sorry, I don't know what it's called)

So, I had a choice. Either leave that mid-bass alone. Or risk the adventurous treble. But "neutral" isn't my aim anyway. I have my RE400 for that. So, I used a modest 3.5 dB drop(for EDM and associated genres, 4.5+/-1dB for everything else). The mid-bass doesn't bother me much and I'm happy with the treble.

I'm glad I have my LG G2, as on-the-fly EQing is such a breeze.
And lo and behold, I can preset EQs for specific songs/albums with PowerAmp.

So everything kind of works out(in a sad kind of way) :sorry:

Conclusion :
What we really need is a shoot-out with the right opposition. Regrettably, I cannot deliver. Let's hope ljokerl manages to get his hands on a set. However, I can tell you that it bests my dual driver Brainwavz R1 in every aspect except soundstage. They beat my Xears TD4 in sheer treble quality and soundstage. But my Xears had a way with music that allowed me to really indulge myself. (Also they were way more comfortable)

The Quadbest 2 is excellent, and I would recommend it in a heartbeat. I say this because most of my issues are quite personal and may not be the case for everyone. It is incredible what 30$ can get you these days. And more importantly, the effort being put into a 30$ product.

Thanks for bearing with me :writing:
 
Last edited:

hitesh12

Well-Known Member
Adept
Mar 16, 2011
459
35
46
Might as well update my impressions on the LG Quadbeat 2 (post burn in).

Fit update:
I still have a tough time getting a good fit. The nozzles are too short and overly angled for my ears. But I've gotten used to the 4 step procedure(developed after extensive trial and error) to get a good fit. There is a simpler 2 step procedure intended for casual listening.

Comfort update:
My fit problem forces me to use the HiFiman Bi flanges. These give me pressure problems over time and somehow the rim of the first flange tickles the inside of my ear. Sigh. I tried my sawed-off complys but hated what they did to the sound. So I'm limited to short listening sessions until I get some better tips. :(

Sound update:

I'll just repost my initial impressions(italicized) followed by the update.

The treble is special. It's not as smooth as the RE400 but not sharp enough to irritate me(I like my treble very smooth). Suppose you're listening to a track,and you know when(in the track) a crescendo of potentially sibilant treble will hit. Judging from the treble sparkle and clarity in the rest of the track you scrunch your eyes in anticipation. But it doesn't happen.
"In-perfect-measure" should sum that up
I'm very impressed with the detail and airiness in the highs. They don't sound like a budget pair at all.

The mids are nothing to write home about(blame the RE400). But they complement the excellent treble well. I don't seem to be getting all the details as I do from my RE400. Also there's a lack of overall dynamics. I haven't listened to enough music to nitpick but I expect them to handle most of it well enough.
The soundstage is impressive(again, with the right fit). It conveys a good sense of space that feels dry and empty at the rarest of times. However, it is much much wider than it is deeper.

Now on to the minuses
This is how I fell the bass was tuned: LG asked iSound(?) to wow them with a budget audiophile iem to go with the audiophile friendly G2. The team tuned it to be fairly neutral with great extention at both ends. No sub-bass roll off. And a hint of a V shaped sig to keep things interesting.
Satisfied, they present it to the G2 team who go ":meh:, Why is this so boring? Where's the boom-boom?". Head of the LG G2 team proceeds to add a dollop of vaguely placed mid-bass dough on an exquisite cake.

The bass feels ill placed. Like a block that's important but doesn't fit. Like it was added as an afterthought. I can't put a finger on it. Maybe with more listening, I will be able to.
The mid-bass is "eccentric":wacky:, is the best way to put it. I think EQing will iron it out a bit. But it will be tricky.
The sub-bass is controlled and unobtrusive. (I would love to have this sub-bass on my RE400s)


The treble is still fantastic. It somehow manages to sing without ever getting sibilant. They're like safety scissors. Can go to town on paper and keeps those stupid children from using themselves as craft material.
Now do I like it enough to prefer it over the overly smooth RE400 treble? ....nnngh.. No. I cannot say that. I love how the RE400 treble sits back and does its thing with aplomb. I don't feel like the QB2 is giving me any more detail. But it emphasizes the same details I get from the RE400. I guess I'm just not a treble head.....yet. In this phase of my audiophile journey, I'm a basshead partially converted to a mid-head.:D
But there is a scenario where I'd reach for the QB2. I do like the way it shreds through EDM and trance. This kind of music calls for some bite and more-than-needed clarity which the QB2 does deliver. The RE400 with its sub-bass roll off and smooth treble cannot cut it.

Has the burn-in cured the eccentric mid-bass? Well....no. But it has certainly tried. The mid-bass is slightly well behaved now. It still feels misplaced to me. But it isn't as frown-worthy as before.
The sub-bass is right up my alley when it comes to presence and rumble. I wish I could copy and paste it onto the RE400. I don't feel as if it has changed much with burn in. Any perceived difference could be a side effect of the better control in the mid-bass.

Does a simple EQ fix it?

I had no hope out of the box. As my gripe was not limited to the quantity.
I tried a narrow(later wider) drop of around 5-6dB in the 100-125Hz region.
What's happening here? o_O I found myself paying more attention to the differences I felt in the upper midrange and treble. It felt like the midbass vibrations were limiting the driver's capability. I really didn't expect the EQ to cause such a global change. The mid-bass didn't gain as much control as I would have liked. It continued to do its thing albeit in a more subdued way(good enough for me). The upper mids stepped forward a bit(no complaints, I actually welcomed it as the treble was hogging the sig).
Much to my disappointment, the treble would occasionally step out of line. And 'occasionally' became 'often' with EDM and its associated genres(the one thing it did better than my RE400s). Don't get me wrong, the treble isn't peaky at all. It just isn't to my personal liking. There may be many who will rave about "the awesome boost in treble".
Overall, this does flatten out the V quite a bit.(maybe an extra -dB or two on the mid-bass). What I felt like I ended up with is an occasional....."nike logo" like response(Sorry, I don't know what it's called)

So, I had a choice. Either leave that mid-bass alone. Or risk the adventurous treble. But "neutral" isn't my aim anyway. I have my RE400 for that. So, I used a modest 3.5 dB drop(for EDM and associated genres, 4.5+/-1dB for everything else). The mid-bass doesn't bother me much and I'm happy with the treble.

I'm glad I have my LG G2, as on-the-fly EQing is such a breeze.
And lo and behold, I can preset EQs for specific songs/albums with PowerAmp.

So everything kind of works out(in a sad kind of way) :sorry:

Conclusion :
What we really need is a shoot-out with the right opposition. Regrettably, I cannot deliver. Let's hope ljokerl manages to get his hands on a set. However, I can tell you that it bests my dual driver Brainwavz R1 in every aspect except soundstage. They beat my Xears TD4 in sheer treble quality and soundstage. But my Xears had a way with music that allowed me to really indulge myself. (Also they were way more comfortable)

The Quadbest 2 is excellent, and I would recommend it in a heartbeat. I say this because most of my issues are quite personal and may not be the case for everyone. It is incredible what 30$ can get you these days. And more importantly, the effort being put into a 30$ product.

Thanks for bearing with me :writing:
Thanks ! Very noob friendly review :dummy1:
 

esanthosh

Well-Known Member
Veteran
Jan 3, 2010
2,041
260
123
Coimbatore
Happy New Year everybody!

I do not believe in making New year resolutions because our minds are incapable of changing just because of the change in the year. That said, I do have some goals for 2014
  1. I will be more prudent with money. I hope to reach the savings and asset allocation targets I have set.
  2. I will prune my audio inventory to a level where there is still enough variety in terms of sound signatures, but not a mind boggling amount of choices.
  3. In connection with #2, I will finally put up that sale thread.
  4. I will try to fight more against my temptation to buy anything and everything that piques my interest. Anything I buy either should offer an upgrade or should replace one or more things in my inventory.
  5. I hope to achieve that feeling of content, which I have achieved with my home theater, with my portable / transportable setup as well. If not this year, at least within the next three. That way, I can concentrate on the content, not the gear.
  6. I may write less and less impressions, but hope to contribute a little something every now and then. I seem to understand an IEM / gear only after I have lived with it for a while. While my opinion and hence review length or content may not change drastically from first week to the third week, I have less doubts about what I am writing by the third week compared to the third day. It can be attributed to slowdown with age, a large drop in enthusiasm from 3-4 years ago, audio lingo amnesia (and hence more caution in what I am about to blabber) and last but not the least, my current situation and responsibilities. When I was writing review after review, it was not just for fun, but also a great means of diversion away from pressures of life. Now that I finally have no pressure, 'review' itself becomes an uninvited pressure. If I start enjoying the process once again, may be I will be open to writing more.
 

sardar17

Active Member
Adept
Dec 16, 2013
209
43
41
Happy New Year everybody!

I do not believe in making New year resolutions because our minds are incapable of changing just because of the change in the year. That said, I do have some goals for 2014
  1. I will be more prudent with money. I hope to reach the savings and asset allocation targets I have set.
  2. I will prune my audio inventory to a level where there is still enough variety in terms of sound signatures, but not a mind boggling amount of choices.
  3. In connection with #2, I will finally put up that sale thread.
  4. I will try to fight more against my temptation to buy anything and everything that piques my interest. Anything I buy either should offer an upgrade or should replace one or more things in my inventory.
  5. I hope to achieve that feeling of content, which I have achieved with my home theater, with my portable / transportable setup as well. If not this year, at least within the next three. That way, I can concentrate on the content, not the gear.
  6. I may write less and less impressions, but hope to contribute a little something every now and then. I seem to understand an IEM / gear only after I have lived with it for a while. While my opinion and hence review length or content may not change drastically from first week to the third week, I have less doubts about what I am writing by the third week compared to the third day. It can be attributed to slowdown with age, a large drop in enthusiasm from 3-4 years ago, audio lingo amnesia (and hence more caution in what I am about to blabber) and last but not the least, my current situation and responsibilities. When I was writing review after review, it was not just for fun, but also a great means of diversion away from pressures of life. Now that I finally have no pressure, 'review' itself becomes an uninvited pressure. If I start enjoying the process once again, may be I will be open to writing more.
yes very good and i am hoping u are gonna donate some of ur useless stuff(which u don't use) to ur fellow indians:D

u will be very content if u do that,i can tell u:woot:
 
  • Like
Reactions: esanthosh

kenpachiroks

Active Member
Disciple
Dec 15, 2009
145
89
42
Only 53 posts and 36 likes later, I already feel like I've been here for a while. Everyone here is so friendly and helpful. I'm happy to have stumbled across this forum, where I can indulge in this (met-with-weird-looks)hobby of ours.
Let's make this a happy new year for everyone :joyful:

@esanthosh
You've had your fair share of flings on your long rambling journey. Maybe it is time you found the one(or few;)) that give you contentment.
I still like to see you stave off that Fidelio S2 though :troll:
 

sardar17

Active Member
Adept
Dec 16, 2013
209
43
41
Only 53 posts and 36 likes later, I already feel like I've been here for a while. Everyone here is so friendly and helpful. I'm happy to have stumbled across this forum, where I can indulge in this (met-with-weird-looks)hobby of ours.
Let's make this a happy new year for everyone :joyful:

@esanthosh
You've had your fair share of flings on your long rambling journey. Maybe it is time you found the one(or few;)) that give you contentment.
I still like to see you stave off that Fidelio S2 though :troll:
man fidelio s2 is on my radar for some time now
ppl say its better than gr07 and at 130$,,thats a hell of a deal
 

itsvel06

Active Member
Disciple
Sep 1, 2009
68
46
37
30
↑itsvel06 said:
Hmm.. The ear hooks are the only sensible portion of kef m200's design. The main problem is that stem and the bore of the iem on which the tips og is really thick and wide, so even when you put on small tips it compares to using large tips on other iems. Kef actually won the red dot design award for m200... Lol. The design apparently mimics a musical note :)

Good to know the treble on gr07 is clearing up... If you are still looking for alternatives did u consider Philips fidelio S1/2? Their signature is balanced with a slight sub bass/midbass lift to increase the impact and make them a little warm... They are kinda open backed, so I heard they they sound quite open at the expense of isolation.

Sardar17 said:
i asked a few ppl having those but they sent be back to gr07 again!!!lol

i think a huge number of ppl on head fi have gr07 apparently,haha
m200 must be considered at 200$ and i am waiting for the boxing day sale in canada.i will ask my cousin to get good deal.

he already missed 200$ ie80 and ue900 deal from ncix,canada...............damn
apparently he was sleeping both times:(
Dude I'm going to kill you :p
 

esanthosh

Well-Known Member
Veteran
Jan 3, 2010
2,041
260
123
Coimbatore
Do I smell a new model and stock clearance? S2 on Amazon JP drops 100 yen on a daily basis. It is now below 7000 yen. It is even less than S1 which is 7620 yen.

So....o... tempting.... Dammit! I type out NY resolution in the morning and am almost ready to break in the evening. Should I? Shouldn't I? :nailbiting:
 
  • Like
Reactions: sardar17

sardar17

Active Member
Adept
Dec 16, 2013
209
43
41
Do I smell a new model and stock clearance? S2 on Amazon JP drops 100 yen on a daily basis. It is now below 7000 yen. It is even less than S1 which is 7620 yen.

So....o... tempting.... Dammit! I type out NY resolution in the morning and am almost ready to break in the evening. Should I? Shouldn't I? :nailbiting:
why should u
u have way better inventory anyway,seriously.

s2 may just turn out to be hype,even if it just rivals gr07 u still have better stuff
 
  • Like
Reactions: esanthosh

itsvel06

Active Member
Disciple
Sep 1, 2009
68
46
37
30
why should u
u have way better inventory anyway,seriously.

s2 may just turn out to be hype,even if it just rivals gr07 u still have better stuff
No man, when I asked you earlier to consider the fidelio s1/2, you told me that many from head fi who had the gr07 and tried replacing it with the fidelio s2 ended up using the GR07 in the long run!!! Now you are back hunting for the fidelio s2! What happened to the bang and olufsen h3? Did you get a chance to try it out? If possible I would strongly recommend that you check it out! It's available in ebay us for an amazing price! I would say, from what I read and asked around, it would outperform the fidelio s2!
 
  • Like
Reactions: sardar17