Audeze SINE Impressions and Discussions

Discussion in 'IEMs and Portable Gear' started by Griffon, Mar 22, 2016.

  1. Merrick

    Merrick A lidless ear

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    I rarely used my phone as a source for an extended period before, so it's hard to say. I suspect the Cypher cable does drain the battery more than the headphone jack though. For the sound quality, it's worth it to me.
     
  2. burnspbesq

    burnspbesq Friend

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    According to a person at the Audeze table in the Marketplace at T.H.E. Show, Audeze's current deal with Apple does not allow it to sell the Cipher cable for SINE as a standalone, aftermarket accessory. So if you're even remotely tempted by the cable, be sure to buy it up front with the phones.
     
  3. liamstrain

    liamstrain MOT: The Audio Guild

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    Huh - interesting, and frustrating. Ah Apple... I love you, and yet I don't.

    I opted to get the Sine with just the regular cable, since I do not own any current apple devices (my iPod classic serves just fine). And I refuse to do audio with my phone (which is Android anyway).

    So far, I've enjoyed the sound. It should work nicely for commuting as is. If i want to add eq for more serious listening at the office/home - I can, but I have better headphones for that purpose anyway.
     
  4. Koth Ganesh

    Koth Ganesh Friend

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    So, that is why the dealer in India is charging the equivalent of $250 for the Cipher cable as a standalone accessory. Anyway, I've found my combo:

    iphone6S + Sine with regular cable and if I want to better this, GOV2+Sine with Macbook Air.
     
  5. Zed Bopp

    Zed Bopp Friend

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    How are the Sines for us big-headed folk? I'm about to pull the trigger on them next week and this is one question that always comes up for me.

    For reference:
    - the V1 over-ear Momentums fit my head with ease
    - M100s only just (with a cap on it's a bit tight)
    - the M80s = too small
    - Aurvana Lives = just right fully extended
    - Focal Spirit Pros have clicks to spare

    Cheers!
     
  6. blackships

    blackships Friend

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    You don't have a big head. The Sine will fit you just fine.
     
  7. liamstrain

    liamstrain MOT: The Audio Guild

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    If the momentums fit, the Sine will as well.
     
  8. DomieMic65

    DomieMic65 Rando

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    Subscribed!!!
     
  9. Slaphead

    Slaphead Facebook Friend

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    I'm going to have to give these another try. So far they've been languishing on my Shelf of Shame™ since about June last year, with only about 2 hours use on them.

    The problem was not the audio quality, which is actually very very good. The problem was that they just didn't fit into my usage case, and I saw a number of shortcomings with them.

    This is how I remember them:

    First off that flat cable is an absolute bugger - it's just too unwieldy and heavy for portable use, which is how I envisioned using these. They didn't make the cut for home listening as I already have couple of very good closed back solutions for home listening.

    They're heavy. Normally this wouldn't bother me with over ear headphones, but with these being on ear it bothered me an awful lot as they just didn't feel secure on my head.

    After about 15 minutes of use I could start to feel the top edges of the Fazor array digging into my ears - not particularly uncomfortable, but nevertheless a nagging point.

    They exhibited a really weird fading out and in of the sound every time I looked up or down, or when I tilted my head to either side.

    The isolation, or rather the lack of it, made these really unsuitable for my daily commute. That said, I'm used the isolation provided by either my HD25s or my Beyer Dt1350s, both of which, IMO, are best in class for isolation provided by on ear headphones, so this would be a tough act to follow anyway as I've been spoilt by the Sennys and the Beyers.

    After all that I would have to admit that the audio quality is exceptionally good for an on ear. However my Beyer DT1350s are actually tonally quite similar. They lack the soundstage and detail retrieval of the SINEs, and can sound a touch congested in comparison, but they aren't worlds apart and for portable use they win through ease of use, isolation, and comfort.

    So, that's how they ended up on my Shelf of Shame™, which I hasten to add is not necessarily where bad audio products go, but rather a place to keep bits of kit that have fallen out of rotation, or like the SINEs, good products which in one way or another have some issues that I find I can't really live with, but still want to keep them around for reference purposes.
     
  10. Zed Bopp

    Zed Bopp Friend

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    Audeze just came out with the open-back Sine DX - "You have made it clear: an open-back version of our critically acclaimed SINE closed-back is what you want to hear! "

    https://www.audeze.com/products/sine-series/sine-dx-ear-open-back-headphone

    Really? I would have liked to see a closed over-ear version of these, like the Momentum 2 or PM3. Basically the same ol' thing with better comfort and isolation. Open-backed, on-ear and portable is a weird mix.

    I'm really loving the closed-back ones lots still, though. Metal571 hit the nail on the with his recent review:
     
  11. Lyander

    Lyander Official SBAF Equitable Empathizer

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    While I do agree it seems somewhat atypical a configuration, this is actually close to what I was looking for some time ago. Most of my listening is done on a transporable I lug around the house or to and from school, and as someone who is... unaware at times (which is why I really shouldn't be investing in pure portable audio), open-backs seem like an ideal way to keep aware of my surroundings while still being able to enjoy music.

    Of course, there are a good many drawbacks in terms of leakage and isolation, the latter leading to one's having to crank the volume up to unsafe levels if they really want to drown out external noise and focus on the music, so these definitely aren't for people who want any more than background ambiance when taking them out and about or those who need to avoid bugging cubicle neighbors/fellow library-goers.

    I'm actually quite curious how these sound, and though I found the original SINEs were comfortable enough on my smaller-than-average ears, I agree a circumaural form factor would have been preferable.
     
  12. udin

    udin Acquaintance

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    Just picked up a pair the Sines with Cipher cable for $299 during Audeze's summer sale. Overall, I find them to be an excellent headphone. Very solidly built even if a bit on they heavy side for a portable. The cable(s) won't get twisted up because of their form factor, but they're not my favorite due to a little inflexibility. Clamp is a bit tight out of the box, however, a few days on a Sieveking Omega style headphone stand helped stretch them out a little. Still, I find it difficult to get a good fit, and usually my listening sessions with them are shorter as a result.

    As to the sound, I find it to be very excellent. Good instrument separation, nice bass, and a good clean sound, at least to my ears. I initially thought the midrange sounded a bit recessed, but have since come to appreciate the overall presentation. The soundstage is not huge, especially compared to a closed over-ear like the TH-X00, but I don't really think it takes away from the enjoyment of the headphone. I don't find it to be fatiguing at all, sound wise, and if not for the eventual discomfort, I imagine I would listen to it for hours on end. I can play music straight from my iPhone with plenty of volume and without much degradation in sound quality.

    As to the Cipher cable, I haven't used it as much as I thought I would. I'm not much into eq, although I did download the app and have played around with it a little. Sometimes little blips in the sound occur when using the Cipher, which I'm guessing has something to do with the DSP, and once when using the app I got a loud whining noise that was only fixed by unplugging the cable. I find I usually use the standard cable, which allows me to try out multiple devices, such as the DF Red or the Centrance Dacport, without having to change the cable.

    For $299, I consider the Sine to be an excellent value. Not sure I would spend $500 due to comfort issues, but for the price I paid, I don't regret my purchase in any way.
     
  13. Scubadude

    Scubadude Almost "Made"

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    Late to the party, a head-fi buddy found two of these with Cipher cable at a local online cellphone store. Must have been slow moving stock as the price was lower than last year's Audeze summer sale. And so for the first time in known history South African headphone lovers bought new kit below the best international prices. I don't quite have a use case figured out but I am strangely excited by this imminent arrival.
     
  14. pelagius

    pelagius Rando

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    I impulsively picked up a pair of B-Stock Sines with the Cipher cable for $150, and I'm glad I did. Some others have said that this headphone is more comparable to over-ear headphones, and I agree. My on-ear frame of reference is a V-Moda M-80 and a Sennheiser Momentum, and I find the Sine to be considerably better than either of those. It has far better treble and bass extension, bass tightness and texture, and detail than either of those headphones. I would even say this headphone has a bit of air and decent imaging, albeit with a relatively small soundstage. Still, I find it great for a closed, portable headphone, and find active listening to be quite engaging with the Sine.

    It is worth reiterating what others have said about how sensitive this headphone is to having a good seal. I even notice a difference in sound between the left and right channels if I turn my head too quickly and make the pressure in one earcup higher than the other. Also, I may be imagining this, but I feel if you have a bubble in one of your ears, the seal accentuates the difference in hearing between one ear and the other.

    These headphones are also pretty large for on-ear headphones. My ears actually fit entirely inside the pads like an over-ear headphone. With the stock pads, my ears pushed up against the fazors a little bit, which was fine at first but was pretty uncomfortable within an hour. I actually got an adapter to use these with proper over-ear pads, and got a pair of Dekoni ATH-M50 memory foam pads to go with. The result is not exactly perfect-looking, but my ears now only just graze the fazors. I also turned the bass down a bit for use with these pads.

    However, I think that a large part of why I enjoy the headphone as much as I do is due to the Cipher cable. I felt like the headphone comes into its own more at medium-high volumes, so I wouldn't want to take away any power. I also definitely like having the EQ with the cipher app.

    I would recommend this headphone with Cipher cable to iPhone users who want decent quality with a portable but aren't willing to go with an inconvenient or bulky solution. I do think $450 is still a bit steep though. I'd keep an eye out for B-stock.
     
  15. jexby

    jexby Posole Prince

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    the majority of SBAF already realize that Sines aren't worth purchasing at B-stock prices either.
     
  16. zerodeefex

    zerodeefex SBAF's Imelda Marcos

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    The version with lightning cable is appropriately priced at $150. Don’t be a dour danny.

    Of course, if I was spending more than $100 on portable headphones I’d save up and get the damn JVC and mod them.
     
  17. winterfog

    winterfog Facebook Friend

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    I had these for about a year after buying them on a b-stock sale; recently sold them. With the regular cable they didn't really sound like they were worth the price, even out of a desktop amp. With a lightning cable and an iPhone, though, they sounded pretty great. If their sound was the only thing that mattered, I would probably still own them.

    The main problem with them, IMO, is that they're not portable enough. Much like an iPhone, the industrial design is both beautiful and fragile. It's very susceptible to scratches in the metal or scuffs/tears in the leather earcup coverings. Plus I always suspected that the tiny rotating hinge that attaches each earcup yoke to the headband was about to break. It's an OCD nightmare. I suppose if you're the type of person who carries a bare iPhone sans case, then you could live with the Sine.

    Also, like @pelagius noted, they're very sensitive to seal and driver positioning, to the point where the sound changes every time you turn your head, or even if the cable pulls a bit more on one side than the other. That hypersensitivity drove me crazy. I tried getting custom over-ear pads from Vesper Audio, and that helped with seal but exacerbated the driver "crinkle" that Audeze headphones sometimes get. (My pre-fazor LCD-2.2 doesn't ever crinkle, thank god.) I can't stand crinkle either, so that was a wash.

    And the isolation isn't great, and they don't fold down much for carrying... etc. Ultimately there was hardly ever a good use-case for listening to them. I would recommend them if you want very nice sound from an iPhone-only source, but only if you plan to use them primarily while sitting stationary at a desk without turning your head much. :p
     
  18. donunus

    donunus Friend

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    Bumping this thread because a store here in the Philippines is selling them super cheap. My concern is that since the sine is discontinued and the audeze site doesn't sell anymore pads for them, I was wondering whether the inexpensive 3rd party pads going around ruins their sound or not.

    EDIT: Here is an example of pads selling for under 15USD https://shopee.ph/product/160179720/14049714549?smtt=0.388089359-1654823832.9
     
  19. Scubadude

    Scubadude Almost "Made"

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    You can find solid models for 3D printed adapter rings on the internet that allow the fitment of many different pads. I used MSR7 / ATH-M30x pads with mine - improved comfort greatly but sacrified pace and energy.
     

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