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Can IEMs be as good as full sized headphones?
odigg
post Oct 12 2009, 17:21
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I've been using full sized headphones for a long time. Lately (over the last few years), it seems like just about everybody and their brother is releasing IEMs. I realize there is a large profit motive to do so because of the explosion of portable media devices. For a long time I've simply dismissed them as devices that sacrificed sound quality for size and portability.

However, it seems like IEMs are changing and improving by leaps and bounds. It's quite easy to find multiple driver IEMS, and one new device even has 6 balanced armatures! Considering the size of the drivers, I assume they have physics (less inertia) in their favor in comparison to the large diaphragms of full sized headphones.

Certainly, it seems there is a lot more actual technological changes in the IEM world than in the full sized headphone world.

Does anybody have any person experiences comparing IEMs to full size headphones? Would your replace your full sized headphone with an IEM? How is the sound in terms "in your head?" What other comments do you have?

It really intrigues me to think that an IEM could best a full sized headphone. I think I'd gladly ditch my full sized cans if IEMs did this with the comfort of a full sized headphone.

I realize I should ask these questions on one particular website that is more inclined to this topic. But that site has way too much fantasy and it's hard to separate truth from placebo.
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udauda
post Oct 14 2009, 07:02
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If you really believe IEMs with multiple drivers perform better(wider freq range, lower distortion, etc) than IEMs with a single driver, you are quite wrong.



Do UE-11Pro(3-way) & SE530(2-way) perform better than ER4(1-way)?

What you get from multiple drivers are bass boost & more distortion.

According to D.Wilson from Etymotic Research:
QUOTE
Do you need a dual driver IEM, or did some marketing genius convince you that two drivers are better than one? The argument for multiple drivers holds water when there are physical limitations to filling a large room with sound, and not a 1.4cc volume in your ear canal.
What do you plan to gain from dual driver?
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Posts in this topic
- odigg   Can IEMs be as good as full sized headphones?   Oct 12 2009, 17:21
- - andy o   QUOTE (odigg @ Oct 12 2009, 09:21) one ne...   Oct 13 2009, 01:19
|- - odigg   QUOTE (andy o @ Oct 12 2009, 20:19) QUOTE...   Oct 13 2009, 03:31
|- - Ed Seedhouse   In my experience the Sennheiser IE 8's seem mu...   Oct 13 2009, 04:24
- - extrabigmehdi   I got one full-sized headphones: sennheiser hd595...   Oct 13 2009, 02:51
|- - odigg   QUOTE (extrabigmehdi @ Oct 12 2009, 21:51...   Oct 13 2009, 14:20
|- - Ed Seedhouse   QUOTE (odigg @ Oct 13 2009, 06:20) QUOTE ...   Oct 13 2009, 18:50
- - andy o   Well that 6-driver thing just seems blatantly over...   Oct 13 2009, 04:12
- - steaxauce   I've owned the Shure E4 and E500, and I had a ...   Oct 13 2009, 05:46
- - extrabigmehdi   @odigg QUOTE 6 in each enclosure! The JH Audi...   Oct 13 2009, 14:56
- - Notat   Here are my comments: IEMs and headphones can bot...   Oct 13 2009, 15:27
- - extrabigmehdi   @Notat QUOTE Headphones can give me a more stable ...   Oct 13 2009, 16:36
|- - Notat   QUOTE (extrabigmehdi @ Oct 13 2009, 09:36...   Oct 13 2009, 22:39
|- - Ed Seedhouse   QUOTE (Notat @ Oct 13 2009, 14:39) Microp...   Oct 13 2009, 23:25
- - JunkieXL   I love my Sennheiser CX500's. Great sound qua...   Oct 13 2009, 16:57
- - steaxauce   The idea behind 2 and 3-way IEMs is that balanced ...   Oct 13 2009, 17:24
|- - odigg   QUOTE (steaxauce @ Oct 13 2009, 12:24) Un...   Oct 13 2009, 18:53
- - extrabigmehdi   @steaxauce QUOTE The idea behind 2 and 3-way IEMs ...   Oct 13 2009, 19:16
- - steaxauce   QUOTE (odigg @ Oct 13 2009, 12:53) QUOTE ...   Oct 13 2009, 20:57
- - extrabigmehdi   @Notat QUOTE Microphonics is translation of vibrat...   Oct 13 2009, 23:34
|- - Notat   QUOTE (extrabigmehdi @ Oct 13 2009, 16:34...   Oct 15 2009, 16:32
|- - gmwiz05   QUOTE (Notat @ Oct 15 2009, 11:32) QUOTE ...   Oct 15 2009, 19:51
- - udauda   If you really believe IEMs with multiple drivers p...   Oct 14 2009, 07:02
|- - rpp3po   QUOTE (udauda @ Oct 14 2009, 08:02) If yo...   Oct 14 2009, 09:24
|- - udauda   QUOTE You do know, that for the domain of IEMs the...   Oct 14 2009, 09:41
|- - rpp3po   QUOTE (udauda @ Oct 14 2009, 10:41) You m...   Oct 14 2009, 10:04
|- - udauda   I'd love to do that, but I don't have the ...   Oct 14 2009, 10:48
|- - rpp3po   QUOTE (udauda @ Oct 14 2009, 11:48) By th...   Oct 14 2009, 11:41
||- - odigg   QUOTE (rpp3po @ Oct 14 2009, 06:41) We ca...   Oct 14 2009, 14:32
||- - rpp3po   QUOTE (odigg @ Oct 14 2009, 15:32) rpp3po...   Oct 14 2009, 17:32
||- - tot   QUOTE (odigg @ Oct 14 2009, 15:32) QUOTE ...   Oct 14 2009, 21:33
|- - odigg   QUOTE (udauda @ Oct 14 2009, 05:48) By th...   Oct 15 2009, 22:59
- - extrabigmehdi   @udauda These graph don't tell anything about ...   Oct 14 2009, 08:56
- - extrabigmehdi   @odigg QUOTE Maybe the Westone UM3X is better? Yes...   Oct 14 2009, 15:02
|- - Soap   QUOTE (extrabigmehdi @ Oct 14 2009, 10:02...   Oct 14 2009, 18:24
|- - odigg   QUOTE (extrabigmehdi @ Oct 14 2009, 10:02...   Oct 15 2009, 14:23
|- - steaxauce   QUOTE (odigg @ Oct 15 2009, 08:23) When y...   Oct 15 2009, 22:17
|- - maggior   QUOTE (odigg @ Oct 15 2009, 09:23) When I...   Oct 21 2009, 02:34
|- - shigzeo   For portable use and for ultra details which are s...   Oct 21 2009, 03:29
- - extrabigmehdi   @Soap QUOTE ? I've always heard the opposite i...   Oct 14 2009, 19:39
|- - Ed Seedhouse   QUOTE (extrabigmehdi @ Oct 14 2009, 11:39...   Oct 14 2009, 20:50
|- - andy o   QUOTE (Ed Seedhouse @ Oct 14 2009, 12:50)...   Oct 15 2009, 08:46
- - extrabigmehdi   @odigg QUOTE I'm not a fan of owning 10 differ...   Oct 15 2009, 16:31
- - extrabigmehdi   @Notat QUOTE I was talking about LF noise created ...   Oct 15 2009, 18:16
|- - Notat   QUOTE (extrabigmehdi @ Oct 15 2009, 11:16...   Oct 15 2009, 20:43
|- - Goratrix   QUOTE (Notat @ Oct 15 2009, 21:43) QUOTE ...   Oct 15 2009, 23:12
||- - odigg   QUOTE (Goratrix @ Oct 15 2009, 18:12) Btw...   Oct 16 2009, 03:41
|- - Soap   QUOTE (Notat @ Oct 15 2009, 15:43) Yes, b...   Oct 16 2009, 01:15
|- - Notat   QUOTE (Soap @ Oct 15 2009, 18:15) The bra...   Oct 17 2009, 01:28
- - extrabigmehdi   @Notat You have the same "bone conduction...   Oct 15 2009, 22:37
- - steaxauce   odigg, which one are you ordering?   Oct 15 2009, 23:18
- - udauda   QUOTE Bone conduction is the phenomenon where the ...   Oct 16 2009, 05:14
- - steaxauce   Well, I happened to come across the statement Jerr...   Oct 16 2009, 08:07
|- - shigzeo   Thank you for quoting my review of the JH13Pro bel...   Oct 16 2009, 14:26
|- - odigg   QUOTE (steaxauce @ Oct 16 2009, 03:07) Th...   Oct 16 2009, 14:45
- - steaxauce   Thanks for posting, shigzeo. Your JH13 review was...   Oct 16 2009, 15:09
|- - shigzeo   QUOTE (steaxauce @ Oct 16 2009, 23:09) Th...   Oct 16 2009, 15:44
- - steaxauce   If it's only the earphones' low impedance ...   Oct 16 2009, 16:08
|- - shigzeo   QUOTE (steaxauce @ Oct 17 2009, 00:08) If...   Oct 16 2009, 16:31
|- - odigg   shigzeo - Looking at the graphs on your Fireye II ...   Oct 16 2009, 17:09
|- - shigzeo   Well, I've been testing headphones with much b...   Oct 16 2009, 17:24
|- - odigg   There is something really odd going on with the JH...   Oct 16 2009, 18:51
- - steaxauce   Does anyone know what could cause this in a headph...   Oct 16 2009, 19:01
|- - odigg   QUOTE (steaxauce @ Oct 16 2009, 14:01) Do...   Oct 16 2009, 19:09
- - steaxauce   Right. And he's tested a variety of amps, tho...   Oct 16 2009, 19:29
|- - odigg   QUOTE (steaxauce @ Oct 16 2009, 14:29) Ri...   Oct 16 2009, 20:11
- - shigzeo   i don't yet have access to a cmoy, but had one...   Oct 17 2009, 02:47
|- - odigg   shigzeo - could you post an RMAA for the JH13 conn...   Oct 17 2009, 03:28
- - shigzeo   The clip and the iPod touch 2G have no appreciable...   Oct 17 2009, 04:02
- - udauda   QUOTE The balanced armatures when coupled lower di...   Oct 17 2009, 09:18
|- - shigzeo   QUOTE (udauda @ Oct 17 2009, 17:18) QUOTE...   Oct 17 2009, 12:59
- - steaxauce   Shigzeo, would you mind explaining or linking to a...   Oct 20 2009, 02:05
- - shigzeo   Not sure about a specific scientific procedure, bu...   Oct 21 2009, 01:13
|- - steaxauce   QUOTE (shigzeo @ Oct 20 2009, 19:13) Not ...   Oct 21 2009, 18:26
|- - shigzeo   the amp is a measuring device: whether a soundcard...   Oct 22 2009, 02:38
|- - odigg   QUOTE odigg, I think you misunderstood me. Sorry. ...   Oct 22 2009, 03:47
|- - shigzeo   odigg, I know you are only trying to get things st...   Oct 22 2009, 05:20
- - Arnold B. Krueger   QUOTE (odigg @ Oct 12 2009, 12:21) I...   Oct 21 2009, 16:32
|- - odigg   QUOTE Consider this. One marketing report I've...   Oct 21 2009, 20:34
|- - Ed Seedhouse   QUOTE (odigg @ Oct 21 2009, 12:34) Arnold...   Oct 21 2009, 20:57
|- - Arnold B. Krueger   QUOTE (Ed Seedhouse @ Oct 21 2009, 15:57)...   Oct 22 2009, 15:05
- - steaxauce   odigg, I think you misunderstood me. Since Shigze...   Oct 21 2009, 20:49
- - steaxauce   What we're seeing problems with is the frequen...   Oct 21 2009, 21:16
- - udauda   As far as I can comprehend, what shigzeo has disco...   Oct 21 2009, 23:59
|- - shigzeo   Good observations. I have noted in earlier tests w...   Oct 22 2009, 02:43
- - steaxauce   Adding serial resistance will not lower the curren...   Oct 22 2009, 07:16
|- - udauda   QUOTE (steaxauce @ Oct 21 2009, 23:16) Th...   Oct 22 2009, 07:58
- - steaxauce   Shigzeo, the reason people are having trouble unde...   Oct 22 2009, 07:29
|- - shigzeo   Well, looking back, I will have to agree that my l...   Oct 22 2009, 08:33
- - steaxauce   The only problem with all this is that the JH13 is...   Oct 22 2009, 09:15
|- - shigzeo   QUOTE (steaxauce @ Oct 22 2009, 17:15) Th...   Oct 22 2009, 13:25
|- - odigg   shigzeo - I understand your test setup now. I hav...   Oct 22 2009, 17:17
|- - steaxauce   QUOTE (shigzeo @ Oct 22 2009, 07:25) Pard...   Oct 22 2009, 17:45
- - steaxauce   Shigzeo, have you measured any other earphones tha...   Oct 22 2009, 18:20
- - udauda   Fuchinobe-san, whom I mentioned previously to refe...   Oct 22 2009, 23:29
- - steaxauce   I went through the IEMs tested on touchmyapps.com,...   Oct 23 2009, 00:35
- - shigzeo   QUOTE (steaxauce @ Oct 23 2009, 08:35) I ...   Oct 23 2009, 11:56
- - odigg   One point to note is that the impedance of these m...   Oct 23 2009, 14:38
|- - shigzeo   I have had a few Sony models and it is true, the m...   Oct 24 2009, 08:38
- - steaxauce   QUOTE (shigzeo @ Oct 23 2009, 05:56) QUOT...   Oct 23 2009, 18:43
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