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  #1  
Old 12-03-2013, 09:07 AM
Teyec Teyec is offline
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Default Phonak Audeo PFE 112 - first impression

Hey guys, I just got these new headphones (rev.2). Actually I bought used ones and according to previous owner they were purchased this year and have been barely used cause of the fit problem. Been wanting them for long time (to try BA type phones, likes the reviews and impressions, changeable filters sounded great and has excellent build quality), and now I got myself one for early x-mass.

I been listening to them for 4h now, testing, playing everything (well, mostly classic, blues, rock, jazz, pop), playing on everything (sansa e260 95%, but tried sansa Clip+, Sony Minidisk deck and PC) and mixing the filters and tips (got them with all filters and tips, tested 95% with gray as I don’t like black much). I have a few cons that worry me, and it would be nice to get some feedback from you guys. I have Soundmagic E10 and Sennheiser CX300-II also so this was like a step up for me, but they don’t sound any better than any of those at this moment. E10 is broken right now (cable problem) so I cannot draw the comparison with them, only with sennheisers.

Cons:
1. misses ambient effect / virtualization – for example a song that has instrument more in one channel felt more like it's coming just from directly lets say left side, while with cx it sounded like it's coming from wider area of left side (basically misses some front and back impressionation)
2. loses the juice – probably biggest problem so far, they perform good and then, just fail at it, like it loses volume (mostly on mids, might find examples later), like it doesn't has enough power to do what it has to do
3. Sansa e260 usually have more hissing problems, but with this headphones it's more heard. All headphones so far have been played with -10 volume (rockbox), and this ones goes from -10 to max -5. So the problem of them being not so loud is not much problem here, but is maybe player the one to be blamed for the problem no.2? Would in case like that an amp such as E6 help me solve the problem?
4. slowly reacts to volume controls - around 1 to 2 seconds, is that normal?
5. keep using big silicone because comply doesn't do much isolation - since I use big and comply are medium, I'd say comply are too small for me (which is strange cause on e10 and cx300 I never used big tips). However I do think that when I make a shell around ear with my hand (without applying any pressure to ear) while wearing them with comply, they do get better, more richer then with silicone tips (and makind a shell while wearing them doesn’t change anything).

I do have some nice pros so far:
1. they reacted great to rockbox's bass boster (when applied extra 7 to 13dB). However might boosting it so much be the cause of some kind of distortion that lead to problem no.2?
2. I do believe owner was careful with them, but I was sceptical about how much he used them. However if it was below 10h as he said, might all problems be solver with time and burn-in? Also when I got them out of box, they sounded a bit "weaker" then they do now, they definitely improved a little bit, and on some songs they sounded spot on (fast percussions are definitely a joy)

Please guys share some knowledge, thoughts and experience with me. I'll post if anything changes with their sound.
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  #2  
Old 12-19-2013, 07:43 AM
Teyec Teyec is offline
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So it's been a while I use them now, and since sound changed I feel I need to update my impression.

I'm only listening mp3@320 atm, I always had them in FLAC files too, but my MP3 versions for portables always had bitrates all over the place. Of course I do not notice improvement on every tracks, but it eliminates the problem I had with some of the sub 200bps ones. The old recordings still can get some harsh sound treatment, bringing every error of old recordings forward, but it’s just the way this headphones are.

I switched forever on gray filters and comply foam. So the fit problem is gone now, you could say. The thing is that once I put them in, I have to let them settle for 10-15 minutes and then I can rearrange them one more time once in the ear. After that I would say I get a perfect fit (and as before, making shell doesn't change any characteristic of sound). It also made me tune down the bass to +11db which is quite good in my opinion (treble is still on +7). The virtualization becomes better with it too.

The second thing, the burn in did take quite a lot of time, but the sound quality is now settled. They perform less rough now (actually have quite a nice feeling to some gentle music as Jobim and Chet Atkins, and some instruments as moth organ and udu sound even more accurate now then before).

The problem of needing more juice I’d say is still here. I used my previous headphones from -13 to -10db on Rockbox, but this one on -3 to 0db. On that bass and treble is up and I do believe now getting amp might help a bit.
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Old 12-19-2013, 07:49 AM
Teyec Teyec is offline
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Oh one more thing, I really do miss a clip for the cable, walking with them tends to pull them out of ear sometimes or make the ear guides pop outside of ear canal. Does anyone know if I could buy somewhere just the clip for headphones?

EDIT: The reason I'm asking is cause the cable is quite thick and I don't think most of clips would be able to hold it without breaking or grabbing cable too strongly.

Last edited by Teyec; 12-19-2013 at 09:04 AM.
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  #4  
Old 12-19-2013, 04:10 PM
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DragonBottles DragonBottles is offline
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The 112's require no burn in, but I can't say I have any of the problems you're having. Have you tried replacing the filters with spares? When filters get dirty they can veil the midrange and the treble.

As for the other issues, such as the volume control one, that sounds far more likely to be a problem with the PMP.
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  #5  
Old 12-20-2013, 05:13 PM
Teyec Teyec is offline
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some say no, some say yes, but I really cannot say it's the same thing as from day1, the difference is very noticeable to me, whatever influenced it.
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  #6  
Old 03-06-2014, 06:54 PM
Teyec Teyec is offline
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OK, last update from me about this ones!

I love the sound of them same as from last update. Rockbox is with treble on 5 and bass is on 7. It's much more closer to 0 values, I guess it's cause of getting used to their sound signature and stopped compensating for what I had before. I got Fiio E6 (Fujiyama) now and see now use for it on my Rockboxed e200 (maybe I got too used on my setup), I do however find it very nice addition for my phone (which I rarely use nowdays for music) and PC, mostly cause of how EQ2 works with their no-eq settings (but still sub-rockbox quality). Got new comply tips, lasted me a month. Kinda half the lifespan I expected from them, but I think my next pair might last longer with better care this time.
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  #7  
Old 03-07-2014, 01:36 AM
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muzikfrrrik muzikfrrrik is offline
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You can get Shure Black foam because they last much longer. Plus, they don't absorb that much treble.
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  #8  
Old 03-07-2014, 04:29 AM
Teyec Teyec is offline
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I will definitely try them next. Can you tell me does the regular ones like this fit phonak since they don't have as wide canal like other headphones?
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Old 03-07-2014, 03:25 PM
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muzikfrrrik muzikfrrrik is offline
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Shure tips are for small nozzle, but they can be put on phonaks without much hassle. I start by placing them diagonally to the nozzle and then push. Never had much problem.

I've gone a level up = decored them and put into audeo silicone tips.
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  #10  
Old 03-11-2014, 11:32 AM
Teyec Teyec is offline
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Thanks, I will try them next time I order.
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