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I need IEM advice

oblivion34

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Hello.
I’ve been using trueear Zero (blue) for a week now, but it feels like it’s missing something. My goal is to play games and listen to music. I can hear my opponent’s voice to my left, but I can be heard behind my left or in front of my left. I don’t know if it’s related to the depth of the scene or if it’s something I’m not used to. This is my first time using IEM headphones. Before this, I was using the Sennheiser HD700 and could locate opposing players as if I had placed them with my hand. It was an excellent headset. I live in Turkey and the conditions here are a bit harsh, I don’t think I can constantly try different brands and models. I want to evaluate it while the spring sales have started. Can you recommend me a nice model? My budget is $400, but if it’s a model you can go out and sit back with, I can be flexible as long as it doesn’t go over too much. I just want to put on my headphones and have fun. It will be connected to the Rodecaster Duo device and used. If you definitely recommend using an external DAC, I might buy it. Fiio K5 Pro is currently on sale on AliExpress. I think it will do the job and the device I use works really well. I would like to thank my friends in advance for sharing their opinions and suggestions.
 

IAtaman

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Hello and welcome! :)

Sound that reaches your eardrum and eventually gets transmitted to your brain goes through your outer ear normally. And, among other things, your outer ear shapes and tunes the frequency response that you hear in a way that is not necessarayly the same for everyone - almost like your own natural EQ. This EQ also depends on the direction from which the sound waves are coming, so our brain uses those subtle changes in levels of different frequencies (and a few other things) to guesstimate the location of the sound. When you plug in an in-ear headphone, you circumvent your outer ear and the sound you hear is no longer shaped by "filters" of your outer ear. That might cause the cues your brain use for location to get lost sometimes and you struggle with location of sounds. Mismatch of Left and Right might also cause issues but the Zero Blue Amir measured did not have any channel balance issues so I don't think its related to that. This whole story is to say that an IEM that works for someone else for its spatial cues and abilities might not necessarily work for you. So I am afraid it would be very hard to make an IEM recommendation that would be guaranteed to work for you for gaming.

What I'd recommend to you is to employ some sort of EQ solution - sounds like you are on PC so try out Equalizer APO and Peace, and play around with filters and maybe even crossfeed to see if that helps. And I am afraid your best chance is still to try them out. Or you can maybe try one of those new DSP IEMs like Moondrop May, if you have an Android phone. They offer some basic EQ capabilities so that might work as well maybe.
 

voodooless

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The problem is less the headphones/IEM, but more with the game engines audio processing capabilities. Most don’t have proper ambisonics/HRTF processing, which is really needed for proper localization.

If you want this generally solved, you’d need some software to present a multichannel virtual soundcard, do the processing and output this to the headphones. I don’t know if something like that exists?
 

IAtaman

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The problem is less the headphones/IEM, but more with the game engines audio processing capabilities. Most don’t have proper ambisonics/HRTF processing, which is really needed for proper localization.

If you want this generally solved, you’d need some software to present a multichannel virtual soundcard, do the processing and output this to the headphones. I don’t know if something like that exists?
He says he can locate people with HD700 headphones but not with IEMs, doesn't he?

Before this, I was using the Sennheiser HD700 and could locate opposing players as if I had placed them with my hand. It was an excellent headset.
 

voodooless

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He says he can locate people with HD700 headphones but not with IEMs, doesn't he?
Maybe.. I’d like to have this reliably tested. It can also be that the game engine does have proper processing, but it’s better optimized for headphones vs IEMs.. it may be worth checking the settings menu of the games if there are any tweaking options. And for sure, this will be different for any game.

I found a nice online demo a few weeks ago where you could move a source around a head and hear it move back, forth, up, down, left, right. It was a perfect illusion with simple Bluetooth in-ears. I think it was a game engine demo. But for the life of me, I can’t find it anymore.
 
OP
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oblivion34

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Merhaba ve hoşgeldin!:)

Kulak zarınıza ulaşan ve sonunda beyninize iletilen ses, normal şekilde dış kulağınızdan geçer. Ve diğer şeylerin yanı sıra, dış kulağınız duyduğunuz frekans tepkisini herkes için aynı olması gerekmeyecek şekilde, neredeyse kendi doğal EQ'nuz gibi şekillendirir ve ayarlar. Bu EQ aynı zamanda ses dalgalarının geldiği yöne de bağlıdır; dolayısıyla beynimiz, sesin yerini tahmin etmek için farklı frekans seviyelerindeki (ve diğer birkaç şeydeki) bu ince değişiklikleri kullanır. Kulak içi kulaklığı taktığınızda dış kulağınızın etrafından dolaşırsınız ve duyduğunuz ses artık dış kulağınızın "filtreleri" tarafından şekillendirilmez. Bu, bazen beyninizin konum için kullandığı ipuçlarının kaybolmasına ve seslerin konumu konusunda zorluk yaşamanıza neden olabilir. Sol ve Sağ uyumsuzluğu da sorunlara neden olabilir ancak ölçülen Zero Blue Amir'de herhangi bir kanal dengesi sorunu yoktu, dolayısıyla bunun bununla ilgili olduğunu düşünmüyorum. Bütün bu hikaye, mekansal ipuçları ve yetenekleri nedeniyle başkası için çalışan bir IEM'nin sizin için mutlaka işe yaramayabileceğini söylemektir. Bu yüzden korkarım ki oyunlarda işinize yarayacağı garanti olan bir IEM tavsiyesi yapmak çok zor olacaktır.

Size önereceğim şey bir tür EQ çözümü kullanmaktır - PC'deymişsiniz gibi geliyor, bu yüzden Equalizer APO ve Peace'i deneyin ve bunun işe yarayıp yaramayacağını görmek için filtrelerle ve hatta belki çapraz beslemeyle oynayın. Ve korkarım ki en iyi şansınız hâlâ onları denemek. Veya Android telefonunuz varsa Moondrop May gibi yeni DSP IEM'lerden birini deneyebilirsiniz. Belki işe yarayabilecek bazı temel EQ yetenekleri sunuyorlar.
Sorun kulaklık/IEM'den ziyade oyun motorunun ses işleme yetenekleriyle ilgili. Çoğu, doğru yerelleştirme için gerçekten gerekli olan uygun ambisonik/HRTF işlemeye sahip değildir.

Bunun genel olarak çözülmesini istiyorsanız, çok kanallı bir sanal ses kartı sunmak, işlemi yapmak ve bunu kulaklığa göndermek için bazı yazılımlara ihtiyacınız olacaktır. Böyle bir şey var mı bilmiyorum?

He says he can locate people with HD700 headphones but not with IEMs, doesn't he?
Maybe.. I’d like to have this reliably tested. It can also be that the game engine does have proper processing, but it’s better optimized for headphones vs IEMs.. it may be worth checking the settings menu of the games if there are any tweaking options. And for sure, this will be different for any game.

I found a nice online demo a few weeks ago where you could move a source around a head and hear it move back, forth, up, down, left, right. It was a perfect illusion with simple Bluetooth in-ears. I think it was a game engine demo. But for the life of me, I can’t find it anymore.
Thank you very much for your kind and detailed answers. I want to buy a better product than Truthear Zero while the sales are still going on. I'll try the EQ settings, that seems reasonable. I ask you, can you recommend a really good IEM? When I do the audio tour test everything is fine. Maybe it's related to the game I'm playing. Since it was my first IEM experience, I might have been a little excited :) My current headphone is beyerdynamic DT 900 pro x. I think I miss my HD 700 headphones :(
 

ZolaIII

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I don't understand what you really want? For a budget you can buy even very renowned brand luxury model of over ear headphones or gaming combo with great spatial sound properties and DSP enchantments tho not that great regarding music. Good IEM's you can get much cheaper but they won't excel regarding spatial sound qualities, eventually if you go with planars it will be better to extent.
Some proposals; for gaming A-E 5 Plus or G6 + AKG K702, for music and in line with HD6xx with more bass extension and surce impedance independent that you can run from pretty much anything and great fit (no need to hustle much to get proper seal) Denon AH-D5200, combo gaming & music wireless and BT (and wired of course) with EQ and detachable not bad microphone Audeze Maxwell. All under 400€ (with a little bit more effort in case of some).
Key word with headphones/earphones is wet reverb.
 

asrUser

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Thank you very much for your kind and detailed answers. I want to buy a better product than Truthear Zero while the sales are still going on. I'll try the EQ settings, that seems reasonable. I ask you, can you recommend a really good IEM? When I do the audio tour test everything is fine. Maybe it's related to the game I'm playing. Since it was my first IEM experience, I might have been a little excited :) My current headphone is beyerdynamic DT 900 pro x. I think I miss my HD 700 headphones :(
Why do you need to use IEM instead of headphones? I don't know about games, but maybe Truthear NOVA would get you more spaciousness. Sound Rhyme SR5, if you don't want Harman target.
 
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oblivion34

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May 16, 2023
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I don't understand what you really want? For a budget you can buy even very renowned brand luxury model of over ear headphones or gaming combo with great spatial sound properties and DSP enchantments tho not that great regarding music. Good IEM's you can get much cheaper but they won't excel regarding spatial sound qualities, eventually if you go with planars it will be better to extent.
Some proposals; for gaming A-E 5 Plus or G6 + AKG K702, for music and in line with HD6xx with more bass extension and surce impedance independent that you can run from pretty much anything and great fit (no need to hustle much to get proper seal) Denon AH-D5200, combo gaming & music wireless and BT (and wired of course) with EQ and detachable not bad microphone Audeze Maxwell. All under 400€ (with a little bit more effort in case of some).
Key word with headphones/earphones is wet reverb.
Why do you need to use IEM instead of headphones? I don't know about games, but maybe Truthear NOVA would get you more spaciousness. Sound Rhyme SR5, if you don't want Harman target.
I'm already using headphones. I use Beyerdynamic DT 900 Pro X. Since I have difficulty using headphones in the summer and I sweat a lot, I only want to use IEM. Headphones are products that should not be purchased without trying them on, but unfortunately I do not have the chance to try and purchase these products. I need to decide based on the comments of you, valuable forum members. I have Truthear Zero. I want to buy and use a better one while there are discounts available.
 

ZolaIII

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Hope you are aware IEM's won't solve the sweating and heat problem. I use open in ear shell with hangers earbuds on the go and during the summer and they are more then bearable regarding that but with their own price to pay for that. They don't extend more in the lows than let's say averg mid sized desktop speakers, they leak but not much as open over ear ones and don't suppress external noise and are not easy to properly fit in. I use for a long time Creative Aurvana Air current on a second pair and have spare new one. They are even OK for gaming and have their own sound profile adopted with Creative Sound Cards. It newer went good regarding me and IEM's and it's not because they sound tiny but I couldn't bare irritation on the long run, memory foam ear tips did help regarding both comfort and seal but not enough on the long run. I still use them only when I do some work around the house with small noisy machines and for noise isolation (as a protection).

Edit: you are quite right regarding trying first, it's not easy to recommend headphones for various and complex reasons. Still I can recommend Denon AH-D5200's to almost anyone as they seal easy even over glasses, have 50 mm hinges extension, don't really need EQ, can be driven from literally anything and are not surce impedance dependant but you gonna sweat with them alright like with any closed back over ear.
 
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