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  #1  
Old 03-30-2011, 07:38 PM
dziendobry dziendobry is offline
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Default MEE CC51 Review

Intro
This is the first time I have written a review, this is my opinion based on my subjective ability to hear, as well as my preferences. I received this as a review pair from MEE, they can be purchased on their website for $79.99. Primarily I am a classical music listener, because of this my bias is for analytical, balanced phones. Please keep this in mind. However I listened to a lot of non-classical music for this review as I recognize that is the proper context for these IEM's. With that said the genres I listened to varied, from Prog Rock, Rock, Jazz, Drum and Bass, Dubstep, Down-tempo, Vocal, Pop, Folk, Country (Little Big Town). Equipment used was a Rockboxed Clip, Rockboxed Fuze, and a Dell latitude E4300 Laptop, files used were MP3 VBR -0, 320K and streaming 192k Shoutcast.

Specs
* Driver: 6.0 mm micro-drivers
* Housing: Ceramic housing with aluminum nozzle
* Frequency Response: 18Hz – 20KHz
* Sensitivity: 98 dB
* Impedance: 16 ohms
* Maximum Power Input: 5 mW
* Connector: 3 pin stereo 3.5mm gold plated 90° plug
* Cable: solid color 130 cm cord (51 in) with attached shirt clip
* Accessories: 4 sets of silicone ear tips (small/medium/large; bi-flange), clamshell zipper case

Packaging
The Packaging was different then what I am used to from MEE, the box was thin cardboard, the headphones were nestled in plastic that is felt lined. A nice change of pace from the clear all plastic box I am used to. No tools were needed to open the box.



Accessories
Small Medium Large and dual flange tips are included as well as a clamshell case and shirt Clip. As noted on their website, please be careful when removing the shirt clip. I, like two other reviewers managed to make a small cut in the cord, nothing that affected the use of the phones. I patched it up with a bit of super glue. Joe the VP of sales and marketing said "we will be using a different shirt clip in future CC51s to remedy this issue and are working on a resolution for the current CC51s."


Pre Burn-in thoughts
Right out of the box, these are very detailed, with a great balance of highs, lows, and sweet mids, vocals really shine. I am having a hard time thinking that these are Dynamic drivers because they are so detailed, especially with good jazz recordings. When I was listening to jack johnson strum on his guitar the sound is very engaging, up front and warm. The construction is solid, the cable is different from all the other MEE phones that I own, it is thinner and more flexible. The bass does not bleed into mid-range at all and they are not bass monsters, although in no way bass anemic either.

Burn in
I burned these if for 50 hours using a variety of frequency sweeps, pink noise, white noise, heavy bass drum, and my own custom track list of Jazz, Bjork and NIN. The only difference that I noticed is that the bass settled in just a bit and was better defined.

Listening
What follows are notes that I made while I listened to the listed tracks.

Beethoven's 9th Bernstein Conducting
1st movement - The timpani during the quiet passages as well as the bass plucks really stand out. The highs are not analytical but are not lacking by any means. The mids here from the cellos are well defined, precise and surprisingly audible. The separation is surprisingly good even during very busy passages. The treble is a little bit laid back.
The upright bass being played with the bow is fun to pick out the placement is neat. The sound stage is average, although better then I expected from a micro-driver, they are also more detailed then I expected them to be.

Wagner RheineGold - Karajan
The beginning of this opera builds and builds and builds with the basses and cellos, and then the voices of the rheinmaidens, singing beautifully, no sibilance at all, the highs are gentle and relaxed, not piercing or too aggressive. Decay on the low end is pleasing and natural, mid-range timpani decays very nicely.

These won't be my favorite for classical, of course these were not meant for classical.

Little Big Town - Shut up train
The vocals are right up front, guitar is just in the back behind the vocals. Higher guitar secondary is up front as well, so great placement of instruments and vocals, drums sound really life like and crisp. Sound stage is average here. Details are excellent at -25 db on the clip. Separation is outstanding.

A to Zink tonight, jazz. upright bass has a nice body to it, piano is up front with great clarity and detail.
great clarity and detail of the drum stick hitting the hi-hat.

Listening to Damien Rice O - track 2
volcano, the detail again is amazing. its hard to believe that these are dynamic phones. warm, engaging, and very detailed.

Fit
I found the large single flange to give me the best isolation and comfort, I was able to use the double flange but since I have large ear canals I found that the large singles were best.

Isolation
I took them outside and mowed the lawn with them in, they isolate very well, and I did not have to turn up the volume more then 5 more db on my clip. While the mower was off and I was dumping the bag I was unable to hear my wife yelling my name standing right behind me. That was the end of the outside isolation test.



Summary
These have quickly become my favorite pair of headphones for any non-classical musical listening. The instrument placement is excellent, sound-stage is very nice. They are so very detailed in the mids and the bass has plenty of kick and body that is detailed. I don't have much to compare these to as far as dynamic drivers go, I am a BA kind of guy. These perform so well for their price. They compete with my UE700's and I prefer the CC51's for anything outside of Classical listening. Going from the CC51 to my aurvana 2's (same price bracket) I find the Aurvana's dry and stale by comparison. These are my first pair of IEM's that I was really excited about listening to. They have provided me with a new appreciation of how great a dynamic IEM can sound. While I have not heard anything that would be considered top tier, I think these are a great value for the money. They are built well and feel very solid, strain reliefs are very good and the ceramic housing gives them a nice weight. If you have comments or suggestions please feel free to leave them.

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  #2  
Old 03-30-2011, 07:39 PM
dziendobry dziendobry is offline
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  #3  
Old 03-31-2011, 07:26 AM
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Nice review, thanks.

I've heard the OEM version of this IEM, without the Mee logo on it. I can't be sure that it uses the exact same driver tuning, but it sounded very good. I assume it's a similar - if not the same - small-diameter driver as used in the Mylarone Quattro, since it rests at the very tip of the housing, very close to the ear drums. The ceramic housing is really classy too.
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Old 05-18-2011, 11:16 AM
cnhardwick cnhardwick is offline
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I got the black ones today and they look amazing.
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  #5  
Old 05-18-2011, 11:45 AM
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dziendobry good review, thanks for the read
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  #6  
Old 06-06-2011, 12:10 PM
Pinkys.Brain Pinkys.Brain is offline
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Got them today and they look really good. I haven't had time so far to burn them in, but judging the out-of-the-box sound I will probably boost the mids a bit. But still, even out of the box they sound great. Much better than the Klipsch S4 I tried before (warmer sound but still at least the same clarity without the harshness of the S4).

The shirt clip is really a nuisance. The sharp edges that touch the cable will bring me some nightmares I think. Why couldn't they just attach it to the plastic nob where the cable splits?!? I think I have to remove the shirt clip too, but I'm still unsure how to tackle it...any advice?
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Old 06-06-2011, 12:58 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pinkys.Brain View Post
... I think I have to remove the shirt clip too, but I'm still unsure how to tackle it...any advice?
I removed the shirt clip from the m31 and m16 MEE IEMs with a very small prying tool without damaging the clip. I first pried it open gently without touching the cable and without prying too far so as to break the clip and then just removed them. My tool is metal but I've done this before with a small screw driver as well.
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Old 06-06-2011, 02:08 PM
Pinkys.Brain Pinkys.Brain is offline
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Thanks. I'll try it.

Update: Okay, it's done. Only very minor marks on the cable where the shirt clip was. But it's a really bad construction. Who builds a shirt clip with such sharp edges!!! Maybe I will try to round of the edges, so I can attach it again if need be. But I guess it's not worth it...and of course there are some marks on the shirt clip, but the cable had priority.
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Old 06-06-2011, 02:23 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pinkys.Brain View Post
Thanks. I'll try it.
Just be careful with the cable and make sure you pry it open enough before you remove it, better to ruin the clip than the cable.
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Old 06-06-2011, 02:58 PM
Pinkys.Brain Pinkys.Brain is offline
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I just saw the new clip in cnhardwick's review of the CW31. Maybe we can get them seperately - Meelec, Do You Hear Meeee! ^_^
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Old 06-06-2011, 03:44 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pinkys.Brain View Post
I just saw the new clip in cnhardwick's review of the CW31. Maybe we can get them seperately - Meelec, Do You Hear Meeee! ^_^
lol, send them a contact via their website.
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Old 06-07-2011, 07:09 AM
Pinkys.Brain Pinkys.Brain is offline
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I just noticed that one of the small tips in my package was ripped. A reviewer on head-fi.org mentioned it too...

I have to say that all the tips are a bit roughly fabricated. They work fine, no doubt, but I have seen better castings.


Quote:
Originally Posted by WalkGood View Post
lol, send them a contact via their website.
Consider it done ^_^
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Old 06-07-2011, 08:52 AM
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Pinkys.Brain I'm sure they'd send you tips too if you mention it. They're the least expensive Chinese knock offs but after market tips like the sony hybrids work better. Their bi-flange tips are better made which I use sometimes but I’m using shure foam tips myself on the M51s.
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Old 06-07-2011, 09:51 AM
Pinkys.Brain Pinkys.Brain is offline
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But would they send them to good ol' Germany? There retailer here (headsound.de) would probably do it (>warranty), but I really don't need them. But maybe not all people are as lucky as I am... =(

p.s.: I'm using the bi-flange.
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Old 06-07-2011, 10:30 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pinkys.Brain View Post
But would they send them to good ol' Germany? ... ... p.s.: I'm using the bi-flange.
A question for them to answer but I'd guess they should, they do have good customer care from what I've found. Yea the bi-flanges are good, I use them sometimes too.
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  #16  
Old 06-07-2011, 11:06 AM
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FYI, the CC51 cable is very different from the M Series cables. The CC51 cable is thin and rubbery while the M Series cables have a durable plastic coating. Removing the shirt clips on the M Series is fairly easy, but the CC51 is not. Most people end up damaging the cable in the process, so I do not recommend it.
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Old 06-07-2011, 11:32 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cnhardwick View Post
FYI, the CC51 cable is very different from the M Series cables. The CC51 cable is thin and rubbery while the M Series cables have a durable plastic coating. Removing the shirt clips on the M Series is fairly easy, but the CC51 is not. Most people end up damaging the cable in the process, so I do not recommend it.
Did you read post #8, he's done ...
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Old 06-07-2011, 01:53 PM
Pinkys.Brain Pinkys.Brain is offline
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Unfortunately you were oh so right cnhardwick:

Quote:
Hi Alf,

Sorry to hear about your problems with the CC51 clip. We are aware of the issues with it and are working on a solution. Unfortunately, the CW31 clip is not a viable solution as it is designed for the thicker cable of the CW31. It will, of course, stay on but it will slide up and down the cable.

Sincerely,

Customer Service

MEElectronics
909.598.1008 x14
20746 Carrey Rd
Walnut, CA 91789 U.S.A.
http://www.meelec.com
http://www.facebook.com/MEElec

But I could still use some tape to thicken the cable at one place and then attach the clip...*arghh*
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