shotgunshane’s IEM (custom and universal) recommendations, favorites and classics

Discussion in 'IEMs and Portable Gear' started by shotgunshane, Jun 7, 2016.

  1. Huxleigh

    Huxleigh Almost "Made"

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    Fortunately, the Martian comes with a nice complement of accessories.
    • Two full sets of tips, both silicone and foam.
    • Anodized aluminum carrying case. Not too large either, as these sometimes are.
    • Velvet drawstring bag.
    • Airplane and 1/4" adapter plugs.
    • Nozzle cleaning tool and polishing cloth.
    The box is pretty handsome, too. There's a foam cutout inside for the carrying case.

    I've tried the stock foam, silicone, and Comply T-500 medium tips. I liked the medium silicone tips best, as they provided the kind of shallow fit most conducive to optimal performance from the Martian. The stock foams were pretty good, but I didn't much care for the performance or fit of the Complys.

    Hope that helps. :) I'm still planning a writeup on the Martian, as I think that it could badly use more recognition. Any IEM that could so thoroughly defeat the ASG-1PLUS for well under a grand deserves serious credit.
     
    Last edited: Aug 9, 2016
  2. IlikeIEMs

    IlikeIEMs Rando

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    Wow! Thank you so much for the info. I will be ordering one this week!
     
  3. shotgunshane

    shotgunshane Floridian Falcon

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  4. IlikeIEMs

    IlikeIEMs Rando

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  5. shotgunshane

    shotgunshane Floridian Falcon

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    IMO anything more than a day is a waste of time.
     
  6. Huxleigh

    Huxleigh Almost "Made"

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    I'd also add that I've detected no difference(s) in the Martian's sound attributable to usage time. Don't worry about burn in.
     
  7. IlikeIEMs

    IlikeIEMs Rando

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    For some reason, the Martians showed up today, a week early. I immediately swapped out the factory applied comply tips and went right to the medium silicone tips that Huxleigh recommended. The silicone tips fit perfectly, thanks Huxleigh! That likely saved me an hour of fiddling between various sizes and tips to find the right one. As I am listening, I am re-reading the Cymbacavum review posted by Shotgun Shane. I can actually hear what SS describes re sound quality in different ranges! I am listening to my ATF group, Rush. I can hear the sub bass clearly and can delineate between the bass guitar and the bass drum, just like in the review. There is not as much bass wham as my beloved JVC fx850s, but the Martian bass is faster, crisper and more resolving - more accurate but probably less fun if you are a basshead who enjoys the 850s. On the other hand there is a very enjoyable bass texture and accurate sub bass depth to the Martians that I really like. The vocals are superb and high treble is tinkly crisp. I am listening to an HDTracks high res recording of Rush played through a Pioneer 100k DAP. I will post what I hear through my LG G5 phone later after I finish listening to a couple Rush albums. Anyway, Huxleigh was right: these Martians are awfully nice sounding and a very good upgrade for me! Thank you both very much for your advice on the Martians!
     
  8. Huxleigh

    Huxleigh Almost "Made"

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    Kickass, man! :punk: Glad that I could help out. And I agree that the Martian is not an IEM that's likely to win the affection of those who enjoy bass for its own sake.
     
  9. Madaboutaudio

    Madaboutaudio Friend

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    What the opinion on the Sony XBA-Z5? Was thinking of getting something that doesn't leak in sound to complement my JVC.
     
  10. shotgunshane

    shotgunshane Floridian Falcon

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    Haven't heard the Z5. Isn't it fairly bass heavy?
     
  11. Madaboutaudio

    Madaboutaudio Friend

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    I prefer more bass heavy when it comes to portable gear.

    I think it's more due to the fact that I live in a very noisy and populated city(7736.5 people per sq km) and iems without strong bass usually gets drown out.(e.g. ER4P has bass when I am in the quiet of my bedroom, but once you go outdoors, you don't even hear any bass at all)
     
  12. Madaboutaudio

    Madaboutaudio Friend

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    Just heard the Sony XBA 300AP. Coming from the JVC woodies, this 3 way BA driver Sony is way too bright on the treble, vocals are razor sharp sibilant(eardrum piercing). It is uncommon for BA to have so much treble detail, but for the Sony I felt it was way excessively harsh sounding, I can't listen to this for more than 1 minute if volume is high. Bass seems speedy, but comparing to other BA iem, the bass is on the weak side.

    Klipsch XR8i, this is a 2 way BA + 1 micro dynamic driver. It certainly does sounds alot like JVC's bass, just a tad weaker but it's mids is very liquid smooth and uniformly coherent. Treble is just about right, wish it was just abit more brighter. Soundstage is pretty small. For those looking for alternative Hybrid to the JVC, do give this pair a listen, they do sound great.
     
    Last edited: Aug 14, 2016
  13. PoochZag

    PoochZag The Shadow knows - Friend

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    FWIW the XBA-A3, which is essentially the same physical design, had pretty poor isolation with either the included Sony hybrids or Sony regular tips. Likely because of the vents
     
  14. Kunlun

    Kunlun cat-alyzes cat-aclysmic cat-erwauling - Friend

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    The Z5 is bassy and warm in the lower mids with the we-made-them-ourselves Sony armatures giving some detail and life to the mids and treble. The bass is less thud-y than the 850 and the treble peaks less, I think it's a more refined sound and after getting used to the bassy sound, I liked it a lot. I mean, no one is going in thinking that the z5 is going to sound like a uerm, so you have to take it for what it is.

    However, one minor issue with hybrids (all hybrids from aurisonics to akg to tralucent to dunu) is that I can hear a difference between the two driver types. Many people insist that they can't and that's great for them, I honestly don't want to make a mountain out of a molehill as it's not a big deal, but just one to be aware of with hybrids. With the z5, you get a foundation of a textured pillow of bass and warmth and the detail comes on top of that in the mids and treble. It works well. I'd like Sony to come out with an ex1000 2.0, but the z5 works for their flagship well enough.
     
  15. shotgunshane

    shotgunshane Floridian Falcon

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    That actually sounds pretty nice how you describe it. The 850 was a bit too much indulgent at everything, so if the Z5 is a little less in quantity at the ends and more refined, that's a good thing in my book.
     
  16. Madaboutaudio

    Madaboutaudio Friend

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    The FX1200 corrected some of the FX850's upper mid brightness but also made itself more darker sounding in the process.

    The thing about I really liked about the JVC FX1200 is that they excel pretty well at any volume levels. Playback at low volume, you still have bass and rich sound, and when you turn up the volume high, the treble doesn't kill your ears and the bass gets more slam but without fatiguing your ears. If you try to turn up the volume on the Sony XBA-300AP, say goodbye to your ears. The issue I have with the JVC is that they leak alot of sound in, making them not really suitable for train rides.

    Some IEM tend to break up(lost of definition) or get shouty(e.g. SE846, GR07) when you push the volume abit louder than comfort levels and there are some iems that don't sound detailed enough when you playback at lower comfortable volumes.

    Although Hybrids still have crossover issues with two different driver types at work(phase issues and loudness differences at crossover point), in my opinion is still a better tradeoff vs the thin bass you get with most of BA driver iems.

    Maybe the Z5 is what I am seeking but the Sony store at my country doesn't even have sample sets for listening, it's kinda frustrating to speak.
     
    Last edited: Aug 14, 2016
  17. mulolomu

    mulolomu Rando

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    @shotgunshane

    Between Earwerkz Supra vs 1964 U5 which one do you recommend if I'm looking for neutral signature IEM with sparkling yet accurate treble?
     
  18. Huxleigh

    Huxleigh Almost "Made"

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    Pretty much my thoughts to a tee, here. Although I remained intrigued by the Andromeda, no purely BA IEM that I've ever heard delivers bass with much in the way of authenticity. To be fair, though, my experience with the upper tier of BA IEMs is exactly nil.
     
  19. shotgunshane

    shotgunshane Floridian Falcon

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    I haven't heard the U5 but once owned the U10. The U10 is supposed to be the U5 FR with more bass. The U10 wasn't even in the same ballpark as a neutral sig.

    The custom Supra is warmer and less sparkly than the universal. I haven't heard the universal Supra in the new Empire Ears universal shell; mine was in the old EarWerkz Kickstarter shell, which was a good bit larger. So I can't really say if the uni now sounds more like the custom or the old uni.

    If you go custom, the Ultimate Ears UE4 will get you closer to what your asking about. It's essentially a baby UERM.
     
  20. fierce_freak

    fierce_freak Friend

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    Depending on a potential upcoming career change, I may want to trade in my desktop rig for a portable one. Modded HD800 is my favorite headphone. Anyone have any suggestion on what might match up most closely? Apologies, it's probably covered somewhere around here. It seems like there are new IEMs being released all the time, so I'll probably want to go universal this time around (had JH13 and JH-3a w/ JH16 in the past).
     

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