IE8 vs. MTPG vs. IE7 vs. se530 comparison review
This is a review comparison of the Sennheiser IE8, Monster Turbine Pro Gold, Sennheiser IE7, and Shure SE530. I only burned in the ie7 and Gold about 20-40 hours before this review. Maybe more burn is needed but we'll see. Here goes.
Soundstage=A+ The best! This can be the most important sound feature for many tracks. It can single handedly make some tracks sound outright exiciting. That is to say, for some tracks I would want a large wide soundstage much more than the vocals to be more transparent.
Bass quantity=A+ Has the most of the four and goes deeper than the four.
Bass quality=A- Many say it has that mid bass hump, but to me that makes it sound either awesome (for some tracks) or not so good to just okay for other tracks (tracks emphasizing on vocals).
Midrange=C+ It has good decent midrange but is rather textured (not recessed) and colored. Not transparent. It is about neutral (not recessed nor forward).
Treble Sparkle=A+ Very good here. This and the soundstage are what keeps this iem exciting and not so laid back sounding.
Monster Pro Gold
Soundstage=C Average or slightly below average. Sounds a little closed in on some tracks but still warm.
Bass quantity=A- Less than the ie8 but not to much nor too little. Enough to just satify a bass head and not too much to disatify a non bass head.
Bass quality=A- Many say that the bass quality is better than the ie8 and I would have to disagree. First of all it depends on the tracks (more vocal, etc.). It doesn't reach as low as the ie8 (was slightly duller). But overall very good.
Midrange=A Very Good! Believe it or not on some tracks (like Whitney Houston's "I will always love you") it sounded far better than even the se530. Very transparent indeed and full (on most tracks). I would say the midrange moves. It either sometimes sounds neutral (not recessed or forward) or slightly forward. Whatever is needed it seems to do.
Treble Sparkle=B+ Not quite as good as the ie8 but not bad either. The spatch sounds (cymbal or drum hits maybe?) were sometimes a little dull and sometimes made this iem sound not that exciting (more like average, not boring nor exciting).
Soundstage=A Virtually equal to the ie8 (maybe an atom less but mostly not noticeable). This feature made the IE7 sound awesome on some tracks.
Bass quantity=A About the same as the Gold but went a touch deeper.
Bass quality=A+ Very good bass quality.
Midrange=B+ Midforward (not too forward) but still nice. I the midrange is better than the ie8 but not as good as the Gold. No harshness either. Midrange is on the transparent side of things but not completely transparent (a miniscule textured).
Treble Sparkle=A+ Very good, as good as the ie8.
Soundstage=B About the same as the Gold (a little better maybe?). Okay I would say.
Bass quantity=C+ Average only. Severe Bass heads wouldn't like and small bass heads would just be able to deal with it. The problem is not the midbass but rather the depth. It has a dull bass and doesn't hit very low. Now eqing the bass does improve it somewhat (more to acceptable levels).
Bass quality=A- Good but needs more low bass. Eqing the bass up a notch brings the grade up to an A.
Midrange=A+ The best on most tracks (not all). Mid forward indeed. Some tracks the midrange is very forward but not quite full (doesn't bring the entire midrange forward but about 90% of it).
Treble Sparkle=B- Not as bad as people are saying but not awesome either. Eqing the treble up (around 14-16khz) does work.
In Summary, for tracks that needed good soundstage, didn't emphasize on vocals (especially female ones), and bass was welcome the ie8 performed the best.
For tracks where vocals were emphasized, soundstage not quite needed, and bass was welcome the Monster Pro Gold perform the best. Whitney Houston's "I will always love you." was absolutely phenomenal on it.
For tracks where a mixture of good soundstage, treble sparkle, and vocals (especially female) were needed then the ie7 performed best. Actually, I found the ie7 to be a mixture between the ie8 and Gold. It performed the best on tracks like "Girls just wanna have fun" by Cyndi Lauper.
The se530 only was in the other iem's league when the bass was eqed up a notch. It probably performs the best on tracks were bass is not welcome, soundstage isn't needed, and great vocals and midrange are essential.
I can't quite rank these iem's as they depend on which type of music is listened to. But if one had to buy just one for all their music then I would rank them as:
1. Ie7=A+ (jack of all trades and could do everything very well)
2. Ie8=A (can do more things better than the Gold)
3. Gold=A- (can do 1 better than the ie8)
3. se530=B (not enough sub-bass while midrange is either equal or slightly better than the golds)
This comparison review may be edited if I find out more info.
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