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KZ ZSX IEM Review

Rate this IEM:

  • 1. Poor (headless panther)

    Votes: 26 17.1%
  • 2. Not terrible (postman panther)

    Votes: 59 38.8%
  • 3. Fine (happy panther)

    Votes: 59 38.8%
  • 4. Great (golfing panther)

    Votes: 8 5.3%

  • Total voters
    152

staticV3

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You are talking out IEMs with wildly differring impedance?
Acoustic output impedance, yes. Not electrical impedance.

What is the basis for your claim?
The knowledge imparted to me by some very smart people like @oratory1990 and @Mad_Economist, as well as some personal experiences taking part in relevant research.

If we could expect two IEMs EQed to the same target using one acoustic load, to still have identical response playing into another acoustic load, then we could simply find the transfer function between, for example, the RA0045 and B&K 4620, and that would allow us to instantly upgrade all RA0045s to B&K 4620 levels of accuracy.

In reality, no "one" transfer function exists, as it is dependent on the output impedance of your headphone or IEM. Each IEM design will produce its own, unique transfer function.
 

Chyżwar

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But two IEMs that measure the same on the same rig, will sound identically for the same person, that is the claim.

Not true. The Hexa and the Red look almost the same on the chart, but sound noticeably different. The Red don't have the level of separation, precision, and clarity that the Hexas have. Same thing with the Moondrop Chu and the Blessing 2 which also look similar in measurements.


truth.jpg
 

nerdemoji

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VSG has measured numerous IEMs that graph significantly different with the mere presence of a pinna. Why would you not seek out data like this before arguing on a forum? This happens a lot with AHS talking points.
You cannot criticize me for viewing AHS, then turn around and talk like you know what goes on there. Which is it? Do you view AHS or do you not? or worse: Do you not view it and then claim to know what takes place there?
 

MacClintock

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Not true. The Hexa and the Red look almost the same on the chart, but sound noticeably different. The Red don't have the level of separation, precision, and clarity that the Hexas have. Same thing with the Moondrop Chu and the Blessing 2 which also look similar in measurements.


View attachment 327898
Sorry, this is just subjectivist talk without any basis. The Red lacks in "separation, precision, and clarity" ? Interesting. Not for me.
 

MacClintock

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Acoustic output impedance, yes. Not electrical impedance.


The knowledge imparted to me by some very smart people like @oratory1990 and @Mad_Economist, as well as some personal experiences taking part in relevant research.

If we could expect two IEMs EQed to the same target using one acoustic load, to still have identical response playing into another acoustic load, then we could simply find the transfer function between, for example, the RA0045 and B&K 4620, and that would allow us to instantly upgrade all RA0045s to B&K 4620 levels of accuracy.

In reality, no "one" transfer function exists, as it is dependent on the output impedance of your headphone or IEM. Each IEM design will produce its own, unique transfer function.
So, is any of this published anywhere? Are you talking about a singular value of the acoustic impedance or a frequency dependent function? Is this output impedance measured somewhere? How do you know that it is differring substantially between IEMs? I guess you take some of the claim from this article: https://headphones.com/blogs/features/the-shape-of-iems-to-come. But there are only measurements of over-ear headphones presented (HD800S vs HD 8XX). So for now the relevant influence of the acoustic output impedance in IEMS is just a claim.
 
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IAtaman

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It doesn't matter. For sure the same IEM will measure differently at the 711 or the 5218 or on any other rig. But two IEMs that measure the same on the same rig, will sound identically for the same person, that is the claim. Please don't try to deviate and stray away from the original argument. That one IEM will sound differently to two different persons, having totally different ear canals, is trivial and not at all the point of discussion.
Your original argument was "IEM's sound is almost exclusively determined by frequency response" to which I responded by saying "If FR is meant to be the FR measured with a measurement rig, no it is not." You did not seem to be convinced so I assumed the argument to be whether IEM's sound is almost exclusively determined by the FR we measure with a measurement rig.

Now you come up with a new argument, that is "two IEMs that measure the same on the same rig will sound identically for the same person", which is not only a different argument but is also incorrect. In any case, could you please let me know which argument you'd like to discuss so that we can continue our conversation.

If the statement you would like to discuss is the last one, could you qualify it a bit by clarifying the following please:
  • When you say measure the same on the same rig, are you talking about any specific rig or is this true for any rig?
  • When you say measure the same, at what level of granularity are we talking about? +/- 0.2 dB when smoothed 1/12 is same or are we talking exact match at raw value, or maybe something in between?
  • Since we are talking identical, I assume we are talking 20Hz- 20KHz, correct?
Also, while you are at it, could you share the link to the article that demonstrates the FR of any measurement rig is linearly correlated to that of humans for all audible range please.
 
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markanini

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You cannot criticize me for viewing AHS, then turn around and talk like you know what goes on there. Which is it? Do you view AHS or do you not? or worse: Do you not view it and then claim to know what takes place there?
That makes no sense. I'm pointing out that you're unironically arguing stereotypical AHS talking points, an insular discord server of ill repute. Now you are making yourself look foolish by acting indignant.
 

Palladium

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Not true. The Hexa and the Red look almost the same on the chart, but sound noticeably different. The Red don't have the level of separation, precision, and clarity that the Hexas have. Same thing with the Moondrop Chu and the Blessing 2 which also look similar in measurements.

I heard the Blessing 3 and it had more airiness than 7Hz Zero, and that's about it. Certainly not something worth the 2500% price difference to my ears and especially not when it comes to outdoor commuting use.
 

MacClintock

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Both of my statements are the same, just rephrased differently. Lets stick to the seond one, as it is a bit more specific.
Your original argument was "IEM's sound is almost exclusively determined by frequency response" to which I responded by saying "If FR is meant to be the FR measured with a measurement rig, no it is not." You did not seem to be convinced so I assumed the argument to be whether IEM's sound is almost exclusively determined by the FR we measure with a measurement rig.

Now you come up with a new argument, that is "two IEMs that measure the same on the same rig will sound identically for the same person", which is not only a different argument but is also incorrect. In any case, could you please let me know which argument you'd like to discuss so that we can continue our conversation.

If the statement you would like to discuss is the last one, could you qualify it a bit by clarifying the following please:
  • When you say measure the same on the same rig, are you talking about any specific rig or is this true for any rig?
Doesn't matter. Any. The two IEMs just need to be measured on the identical rig.
  • When you say measure the same, at what level of granularity are we talking about? +/- 0.2 dB when smoothed 1/12 is same or are we talking exact match at raw value, or maybe something in between?
While a very well trained listener might be able to discern 1dB sound differences and even less, most people, probably including you, will not, so +- 1dB accuracy should be sufficient.
  • Since we are talking identical, I assume we are talking 20Hz- 20KHz, correct?
Yes, again, you are probably not a very young person anymore with a good portion of hearing loss kicking in, for me it would be sufficient to go only to 15kHz. Above 10 kHz is anyways not much musical content, just some cymbals, hi-hats and higher harmonics.
Also, while you are at it, could you share the link to the article that demonstrates the FR of any measurement rig is linearly correlated to that of humans for all audible range please.
I never made such a claim nor do I understand how this should be pertinent to the discussed topic.
 

IAtaman

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Yes, again, you are probably not a very young person anymore
Hey!

I never made such a claim nor do I understand how this should be pertinent to the discussed topic.
Well, for your defense, I did not either until quite recently. If you are interested in getting a different perspective and not just pushing an argument someone convinced you in a discord server, maybe you should look into why it might be pertinent.
 

Chyżwar

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Sorry, this is just subjectivist talk without any basis. The Red lacks in "separation, precision, and clarity" ? Interesting. Not for me.

And what is the objective basis for your claim that: 'two IEMs that measure the same on the same rig, will sound identically for the same person'? You believe it's true, that's all.

Two IEMs that measure the same on one measurement rig may measure noticeably differently on another.

truth.jpg


truth2.jpg



So, these two IEMs sound identical up to 3 kHz, or not? :)
 

nerdemoji

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No. You're completely wrong.
if you were referencing those images you posted, those are far more than 1 db difference, ima be honest here. Edit: I just re-read your post I see what your argument is.
 

MacClintock

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And what is the objective basis for your claim that: 'two IEMs that measure the same on the same rig, will sound identically for the same person'? You believe it's true, that's all.

Two IEMs that measure the same on one measurement rig may measure noticeably differently on another.

View attachment 328347

View attachment 328348


So, these two IEMs sound identical up to 3 kHz, or not? :)
Measurements done by crinacle have no scientific basis, even if he had the largest database, he is a hobbyist, has no pertinent education and so on. They cannot be trustet neither on his 711 clone coupler nor on his new 5128. So please show me professional measurements to have a scientifically based argument.
 

MacClintock

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Hi
Well, for your defense, I did not either until quite recently. If you are interested in getting a different perspective and not just pushing an argument someone convinced you in a discord server, maybe you should look into why it might be pertinent.
I am not on any discord server or anything related to that. And nobody convinced me on an argument but myself, having experience with several different IEMs and reading the relevant research and measurements. While many people naïvely think that expensive IEMs must have something especial, it became increasingly clear to me that the sound is just FR (this is different for headphones). It is a compareable eye-opening experience like blind testing different DACs, If they are competently engineered, they will not have a specific sound, even if one cost 10-100x as much as the other. Likewise, if a $20 IEM has a (competently) measured FR extremely similar to an $1000 one, it will sound extremely similar (low noise and distortion granted). There is no additional, hidden, mysterious variable.
 
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IAtaman

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Measurements done by crinacle have no scientific basis, even if he had the largest database, he is a hobbyist, has no pertinent education and so on. They cannot be trustet neither on his 711 clone coupler nor on his new 5128. So please show me professional measurements to have a scientifically based argument.
Ha! Now you have spoken like a proper devotee! Pass my greetings to GaryH and Sharur :)

How about Sean Olive? Is he credible enough for you?

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JBLEnduranceRun2.jpg
 

MacClintock

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Ha! Now you have spoken like a proper devotee! Pass my greetings to GaryH and Sharur :)

How about Sean Olive? Is he credible enough for you?

View attachment 328425


View attachment 328424
Sean Olive is sufficiently reliable, sure. But what you have shown is nothing that is relevant for the argument. That one specific IEM measures differently on different rigs is trivial. I would never doubt this. But when two different IEMs measure the same on the same rig, then they will sound the same. Please don't mix up the original claim once again.
 
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markanini

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But when two different IEMs measure the same on the same rig, than they will sound the same.
What makes you believe that? Keep in mind your previously stated belief about a lack of pinna interaction was disproven by measurement data. What makes you think your belief is right this time? Especially when your beliefs sound a lot like AHS opinion.
sample-in-ear.jpg

sample-in-ear.jpg

sample-in-ear.jpg
 

MacClintock

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What makes you believe that? Keep in mind your previously stated belief about a lack of pinna interaction was disproven by measurement data. What makes you think your belief is right this time? Especially when your beliefs sound a lot like AHS opinion.
sample-in-ear.jpg

sample-in-ear.jpg

sample-in-ear.jpg
You posted these measurements already. How many times will you still do this? I don't even know what AHS is. And I have no idea who measured this on what kind of rig. probably someone without scientific backround on a clone coupler? Furthemore, as I have stated already, these measurements differ significantly only for higher frequencies, where they can't be taken seriously anyways. And even if you CAN measure IEMs with a pinna, this has no relevance, as only the ear canal is involved, not the pinna. You can measure them also with two legs attached, if you want to.
 
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IAtaman

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Sean Olive is sufficiently reliable, sure. But what you have shown is nothing that is relevant for the argument. That one specific IEM measures differently on different rigs is trivial. I would never doubt this. But when two different IEMs measure the same on the same rig, than they will sound the same. Please don't mix up the original claim once again.
No, It is not trivial.

It goes to show you had no idea what you were talking about when you said "IEMs have no interaction with the pinna, there is little left to have any iadditional nfluence on the sound besides the measured FR" and ignored the importance of ear canal interactions.

Also, your original argument was "IEM's sound is almost exclusively determined by frequency response". when FR in question is the FR measured by a measurement rig. This goes to show that claim is also incorrect.

It goes to show you are two for two on being wrong so far!

I am not an expert on acoustics, and am an electronics guy so let me put this it in a way that I understood myself - if I misrepresent it I am sure more knowledgeable people can correct me.

An IEM is a device that has an output impedance that varies with frequency. An ear canal also has an input impedance that varies with frequency. When you couple these devices, the final FR depends on the interactions between the two variable impedance systems and is not a linear function of either. That is why the same IEM measures same in some frequencies and different in some others in two different measurement rigs and might produce a total different FR in your ear canal. That is why two IEMs that roughly has the same FR on the rig, might have two a different FRs in your ear.

Two IEMs that measure the same on the same measurement rig will not sound the same. Maybe a better argument can be two IEMs that measure the same on the same measurement rig will have the same tonal balance (because there is more to sound than tonal balance) but, due to reasons I tried to outline before, that is also not fully correct.

There are more points to be made as well, especially about the granularity and the level of accuracy of the measurements, but I will leave you with this for now as I do not see any reason to continue this conversation until you can bring up actual data to the table that corroborates the arguments of you and your Scientologist social group.
 
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