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Old 01-26-2010, 05:52 PM
katabatik katabatik is offline
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Join Date: Jan 2010
Posts: 36
Default Cowon D2+ w/ stock earphones vs Phonak PFE

I just got my Cowon D2+ and my Phonak PFEs today. I put some MP3 on the D2+ that ranged from female jazz vocals to classical mussic, with some pop/rock and acoutic guitars in between. There was no EQ and all sound effects where turned off. Then I decided to compare the iAudio earphones that came with the PFEs, out of curiosity. Please note that I am new to this, so this is by no means a review. I'm just trying to explain what I did and what are my concerns.

Anyway, to my surprise/shock, I couldn't hear much of a difference between the stock D2+ phones and the PFE! I thought that maybe it was the quality of the MP3 files that was the cause, so I decided to hear some CDs from my Sony Discman. I swapped the phones countless times and in some musics I actually think the stock phones have a slightly wider soundstage. I tried the grey and black filters and all tips that came with the PFE, settling on the medium silicone ones. After an hour of A-B'ing I came to the following conclusion:

In the PFE, with the grey filters, higher frequencies are mode detailed, but lower frequencies suffer very slightly, i.e., I guess it lacks a bit of bass, even though I'm not, by any means, a basshead.

With black filters, the higher frequencies sound less detailed, but the overall sound is more balanced. I hear very little difference between the stock D2+ phones and the PFE + black filters.

Altogether, I prefer the PFE in most circumstances, but the difference between them and the stock D2+ phones is minimal. In some tracks, I actually like the stock phones better! They seem to have a wider soundstage, seem more balanced and have a "clearer" sound than the PFEs. I also noticed that the positon of the tips of the PFEs inside the ear canal influence the soundstage and the quality of the sound.

I just spent 128 Euros on the PFEs and they sound almost the same as the phones that came with my D2+. This is very frustrating. Am I missing something here?
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