||10-18-2012 11:56 AM
I just threw the PL50 down the bin and am looking for another IEM.
The PL50 were good for the money, I exchanged them for a 15€ Xears TD100 that I had (difference was from night to day but definitely not worth 30,40 or 50€). Not good for metal or electronics music, particularly taking in account how records are mastered these days. They were very good for jazz, vocal, classic, etc, mostly because of how clear and detailed they sounded and the emphasis on the mids. They benefited from amping with a Fio E5 and a Cmoy BB but not that much, the advertised 54ohm dont make them that hungry and they can be used perfectly with a Sansa Clip+.
Had them for around 1.5 years until the right side stopped working, the cable had broken near the earpiece due to normal, everyday use. Opened them up, de-soldered the wire, cut it shorter and soldered again. They regained life but, maybe because of the heat during soldering (30 watt iron, quick soldering but no heat--sink), the right side sounded a bit muffled, lower in volume and without the same detail in the highs. I would have to balance the output of the Sansa about 10% to the right, in compensation.
Anyway, I decided to open them up again and make some measurements, couldt figure out any electro-mechanical explanation for the lack of performance and threw them away for a fresh start.
I would not dish out 40€ for these IEM at this point. Yes, there is that "wow" factor from being a balanced armature and sounding they way they do, but the construction is rather poor/cheap. For this kind of money, you can buy much better full-sized headphones like the venerable HD202 or the Superlux when it comes to quality of sound.
The PL50 are cute and pretty good like those new Fiat 500 and Mini. However, if you want a solid city car, you put the bling-bling aside and go for a Honda Jazz/Fit. Your friends wont be as impressed, but you'll know you have made a better choice in the long run.