comments

They sound (I mean from your review, not my personal experience) excellent indeed. I wish I had waited for more reviews before pouncing on my Shure E4C pre-order... I was not entirely thrilled, even for the low price of $200, and have returned them already.

They were detailed and clear, yes, but I detected too much of an artificial echo (insert audiophile term here), and was disappointed that they essentially still suffered the E3's lack of bass... I simply was not "wowed" with them.

Posted by Jerrod H. on June 21, 2005 at 2:35 PM (PDT) Comment 1

Ditto on the review! As a current owner of these earphones, that are quite nice. I'm a previous owner of the E3c and, while the price is obviously more, the Super.Fi are just great for the money. However, for my use, I do a custom EQ settings in iTunes. To bad I can't transfer my custom EQ settings to my iPod. :(

Also, recently, the cable lost a solder connection to the right channel. Called up tech support and they are sending me a new cable with a FREE tShirt! NICE! smile

Posted by Mando on June 22, 2005 at 9:25 AM (PDT) Comment 2

I just bought these a couple of weeks back. I agree with the review, great sounding. The memory wire on mine snapped. Sent email to customer service, and they had a replacement wire and t-shirt in two days. By the way, they also have a clear model which is the pair that I have. I'd recommend....you can see all of the internals. Plus it is more discrete when you have them in your ears.

Posted by eonicks on June 23, 2005 at 9:18 PM (PDT) Comment 3

Just bought a pair of these. Right channel ear piece was DOA. We'll see how their customer service works - hope it is as good as eonicks experience. Not too pleased right now . . . .

Posted by runningman on June 24, 2005 at 8:16 PM (PDT) Comment 4

Relative to my comment above, I returned these to the retailer where I bought them (Guitar Center) - no problems, easy exchange. Super.fi 5 Pros are definitely superior to my Shure E3s relative to sound and response. A couple of comments, these are large cans for your ears in comparison to other in ear monitors. If you have small ear canals, there are better choices - these will not be comfortable for you due to the larger aperature at the canal opening. The cable is thin and can be damaged easily, but it is replaceable. These are not for active use (running, aerobics, etc.) - more for easy listening environments. They are a bit large for on stage use, you would be much better off with custom UE-5 Pros. Given all that, the sound is excellent for this price range and a good match for all iPods.

Posted by runningman on June 26, 2005 at 9:16 AM (PDT) Comment 5

In all honesty... do you think it is worth spending all this money on high end earphones if the main intended use is on a compressed music player ie ipod. Of course... if listening to a 1bit stereo system they will provide an advantage over apples own earplugs... but with most peoples mp3s or aac's encoded betweed 128 and 192kbps do you honestly get any benefit?

Posted by Guillaume on June 27, 2005 at 1:43 PM (PDT) Comment 6

hi Guillaume i encode at 192 and yes there is a marked difference between apples earbuds and Sony's EX70/71, there is an even greater difference if you use ER6i's so i guess the answer to your question is yes there is a very definite benefit!

Posted by mikey b on July 1, 2005 at 12:00 AM (PDT) Comment 7

I've recently purchased the super.fi pros for myself. I've been listening to Shure E3c for about a year. The clarity was good but it lacked alittle in the bass. I'm hoping I'm making the right decision in purchasing these. It is alot of money for ear buds. Has anyone done a comparison between the two?

Posted by jerokaz on July 7, 2005 at 12:52 PM (PDT) Comment 8

I am thinking about buying the super.fi pros. I need good bass and treble and crisp sound for the best price of course. Can I get some advice on if this is what I should get?

Posted by mike47hundred on July 27, 2005 at 7:26 AM (PDT) Comment 9

Mike, these are the headphones to go for if you're looking for the clearest sound you've ever heard (with strong, DEEP bass). I have a pair and it hurts to take them off. It's like nothing else matters but the music with them on. Get them, trust me, you can't go wrong.

In my opinion, UE is FAR SUPERIOR to Shure and the rest. Become an owner and you'll know why I'm saying this.

Posted by x2jag2x on September 24, 2005 at 11:05 PM (PDT) Comment 10

So, I've been spending some quality time with my new best friends (in my ear right now). To be honest, the discussion regarding in-ear noise cancelling phones needs to be expanded a bit. Previously, I had a pair of ER-6i's and thought that they were the best thing since sliced bread. It is only now with the 5's in my ear that I realize just how wrong my idea of what sounded good was. For those of you who are debating between the two models, save a few of your pennies and get the 5's. Comparing the sound between the two, the overall richness of the 5's is superb. Highs, lows, and everything comes through in a crystal clear fashion. I've finally got bass in an in ear phone! And it's made me so happy! Not only that, but comfort is so different between these two models. I wore my 6i's all the time, and as such, you realize that there are a few problems with them. For instance, you get echo from whenever the cord moves, and the cord can catch on something and RRRRIIIIIPPPPP! out it comes from your ear, sometimes painfully. The long cord is actually more a hazard than a benefit in that case. Also, the 6i's fatigued my ears after sitting in my ears - take em out and your ear feels like it's been on the receiving end of a lovemaking session. Another thing - Etymotic recommends "lubricating" the buds - by using your spit. Those familiar with 'wet willies' will be all too familiar with this odd feeling. To bring it all back to the point, all of these issues have been pretty much taken care by Ultimate Ears - the over-the-ear design actually gives a layer of protection against accidental rip-out, and no lubrication needed to get a good seal. Additionally, NO ECHO - so nice to just hear music, and only that. For those of you who listen to dance/hip hop music, these are the phones for you. As a DJ, these sound like in-ear versions of the widely popular MDR-1000DJ's by Sony. I hope that you can find a good deal on these (I found them brand new on ebay for $150, a price to die for). If the puppy eats THESE ones, rest assured that I will have to buy them again!

Posted by deejay21 on October 17, 2005 at 12:53 PM (PDT) Comment 11

I am weighting the pros and cons of the Etymotic ER-4Ps over the super.fi 5 Pros. Any suggestion as to which of them is better for listening to Jazz and Classical music while doing some weight lifting in the gym?

Posted by albertomadrid on December 14, 2005 at 9:49 AM (PDT) Comment 12

I picked up a pair of the super-fi 5 Pro's last week and am very happy with them. These are great phones that seem to fit the bill for just about all the wide-range of music I listen to. They seemed to get better day by day burning in and simple EQ tweaking.

These really bring out the flaws in a lot of my lower quality MP3's and even in the overall studio production of some recordings (similar to CD vs. Vinyl)

Pros:
Excellent separation of instruments. I am picking up a TON of subtle things that I never knew were present in songs like breathing, fret board noise, drum kit squeaks, & misc. studio noise. There are also some not so subtle things like backing tracks, overdubs and channelling that have become readily appairent.

Cons:
The case is cool, but the winding and closure is a bit cramped. Microphonics... This is a very big gripe w/ the Etymotics, so I'm not sure how the super.fi's compare. The bottom line is that these are probably not best suited for any kind of heavy motion activity or for running.

Overall, I am happy and was able to pick up for a <$200 on eBay.

I was interested in getting custom earmolds for them, but was told by Utlimate Ears that aftermarket molds will effect the quality of the higher ranges. The overall comfort is there, but depending on shifting I have felt some limited discomfort. However, these are LIGHTYEARS mor comfortable than any earbud type phone.

Posted by dafisk on December 15, 2005 at 5:22 PM (PDT) Comment 13

I bought my earphones back in October/2005. I tried to read up on as many IN ear earphones as I could. I wanted quality, and the sound had to be topnotch. If I'm going to drop 250.00 on a pair of earphones, then they better be great. I love audio, either it be Home audio, car audio, or portable audio, it all has to sound good to me or I wont buy it. Now that being said, I ordered my Ultimate Ears super.fi 5 Pro from an Online retailer. I awaited my package like I was a 6 year old on Christmas day. I love the way they look. They are built very well, and I love the fact that they have a cord that can be replaced if you ever get the cord frayed or broken. The cord attaches to the Ear Plug it self, so replacement is a snap. A new cord costs you 20.00 bucks from Ultimateears.com, you may say.. 20 bucks for a cord? That’s a rip off.. consider the fact that these are 250.00 earphones… 20 bucks isn’t so much, and consider that at least you HAVE the option of replacing the cord should it get broken. I hooked my UE’s to my Rio Karma Mp3 player and fell in love with the music. Iv had Earphones in the Past, you know the huge ones Sony makes? These little bitty things put My Sony DJ quality earphones to shame. The Sony's were 150.00 so there not the cheap-o ones you may be thinking. The sound quality out of these were amazing, if I had to compare them to something we all have may have had a chance to listen to in the past I would say its like going from the cheap earphones that came with your 1st walkman, to putting on a set of BOSE earphones. The difference is just there, and you feel it, and hear it. I should also add something about UE customer service. After about 2 months use, one of the ear flanges that fit on the top of the earphone kept coming lose and would diss attach it self from the ear bud and stay in my ear, or would come off with the slightest pull. So long story short, I lost an ear flange.. I was in upset. I could not listen to my music. I emailed their customer service and wrote to them about my problem. I half expected them to refer me to their website and that I would need to purchase a new set of flanges , 10 flanges for 15.00 bucks. Instead they replied back and told me that they would send me out a new set of flanges at THEIR cost, and that I was only the second person to have this problem. Outstanding! In the days of company’s outsourcing personnel and warranty’s on computers for 90 days, it fantastic to see UE taking care of a customer. Bravo UE… Bravo.
If you buy these earphones you will not be disappointed. BEST earphones I have purchased to this day.

PdxLou

Posted by pdxlou on December 19, 2005 at 5:25 PM (PDT) Comment 14

just picked up a pair for christmas, EXCELLENT.
i have been used to using a pair of sr-60s for a year now, and moving to the ue super.fis was pretty ok. I find them to be very comparable after my cursory comparison. THOUGH, the sr60s do proffer an ishload more bass, which i missss. im going to attempt to switch the pair for some super.fi ebs and i'll see if those are better.

Posted by computron on December 27, 2005 at 6:14 PM (PDT) Comment 15

like deejay21 i've moved from the Ety ER-6i to these super.fi 5Pros, and the warmth and bass has brought my music 'back to life'!! just like him/her i did think the etys were incredible, but then I was comparing them to Sony EX71s. i shudder to think what my next purchase will be though (UE-10??!!)

one additional note - as well as hip hop/dance, vocal stuff is still clear.... listen to some Beth Orton or Sarah McLachlan!

Posted by yinyang on January 6, 2006 at 6:06 AM (PDT) Comment 16

I have had my super.fi 5 pro earphones for a little over a month and I am loving them. I am hearing stuff in my music I didn't know was there, including some clipping which had previously gone unnoticed. The sound is very well balanced for my taste and the noise isolation is excellent, I cannot bear to travel on an airplane without them. Which brings me a to another excellent point that has already been mentioned.

A little over a week ago I discovered that the shell of my right earphone had broken. I take excellent care of them and when they are not in my ears they are in the metal case so I couldn't explain how this had happened. Well I didn't have much confidence in that UE would repair them or much less replace them under the warranty but decided to call them anyway. I spoke with Jennifer Blackwell and she issued me an RMA number on the spot. I have an upcoming long flight so I didn't want to part with them until I got back. I figured that as the sound wasn't affected by failure I could send them in when I got back. Well I called her again on 1/23, explained I was going on a trip and didn't want to go without them. I asked how long it would take to get them back and she assured me I would have them back in a week. Well I figured they have to inspect them and will hem and haw about the crack being due to abuse, blah, blah, blah, but I sent them out the same day anyway. Well I am sitting here typing this comment jammin' with my super.fis in my ears. They were replaced, no questions asked and returned to me inside of four days.

Talk about customer service! These are worth every penny in more ways than one.

Posted by WoodWorm on January 28, 2006 at 10:12 AM (PDT) Comment 17

i bought these to upgrade from ER6i's and although they have amazingly deep bass, i felt that the effect was akin to the soundsytem in a pimpmobile, very unnatural, they also sound somewhat recessed in the middle and higher ranges compared to the ER6i's. Needless to say i returned them to the Apple Store and bought ER4P's which are a quantum leap from the ER6i's and much superior to the super-fi's. As for the snazzy case it doesn't make the buds sound better does it? I also found them very fiddly to get them on and they also were not as sound insulating as the ER buds. I have salivated over the UE10's but if they sound like there cheaper cousins maybe i will stick to the ER4P's!

Posted by mikey b on February 15, 2006 at 12:38 PM (PDT) Comment 18

I replaced my 1 year old Shure E3Cs with these babies for the same reason as jorkaz describes. The super.fi's are awesome! The only drawback I'm experiencing is the if the jack gets moved around while inserted in the iPod, the iPod pauses. I've emailed customer service and hopefully I'll get this resolved.

Posted by Signal to Noise on March 1, 2006 at 12:54 PM (PDT) Comment 19

I must have spent so much money on earphones and headphones...from wires to wireless...you name it...I liked the convenience of bluetooth headphones, unfortunately, the built quality of these headphones are comparable to german cars..full of bells and whistles, but lack the reliability you would expect from japanese cars. Anyhow, I was fortunate enough to receive these super.fi 5 earphones for my birthday...i almost returned it when i found out how much they cost...i'm very glad that i decided to keep them...definitely the lexus of all earphones...refinement and reliability

Posted by NATURAL JOCK on June 4, 2006 at 12:54 AM (PDT) Comment 20

After reading numerous reviews and loosing many days of sleep, I finally picked one up yesterday. I got tired of my nano lanyard. It sounded ok, but the seal and fit for was annoying.

Amazing sound! You'll hear clear, balance and full range sound. Bass is perfect for my liking. Bass 305 sounded as good or even betty than my home stereo. As with any good earpiece, you'll hear every detail, good or bad. If you get the clear model, you'll notice the resemblance to Radio Shack speaker cable wires.

Posted by ikorb on June 5, 2006 at 7:56 PM (PDT) Comment 21

Excellent stuff! I'd like more bass but this is not the headphone's fault, which is very well balanced in low, mid and high frequencies. The mids and highs are fine for me, although just little bit more treble would probably make me a little happier too. The actual problem here is the iPod's preset EQ options. I use "rock" but I'd prefer to be able to change each EQ band myself. One of the most important features all iPods lack, IMHO, still is the absence of a manual EQ function. I put off buying myself an iPod for the longest time because of this reason. iTunes has it and it should be possible to synch that up as well. I think this should be fixed as a patch or an "iPod updater". I'd love to be able to configure my own EQ presets (at least one manual...)

Posted by mau_santos on July 16, 2006 at 4:39 PM (PDT) Comment 22

Hi,
I am new to Mp3 & everything related to it? icluding headphones...But i have tried to read up as much as i can..and i am very impressed by the Ultimate Ears super.fi 5 Pro
or at least all the feedback & reviews...

My question is, and please forgive me it it all sounds a bit stupid? but can these excellent in ear phones be improved by say an portable DAC/headamp? I was on another site..and was reading amazing things about the ultimate listening expereince with Mp3 portables..do not pretend to understand it much..but just thought i would ask

all the very best
Steve

Posted by norskman1 on August 15, 2006 at 2:05 AM (PDT) Comment 23

I've had the Super.Fi 5's for about 6 months. Was involved in the long ago and far away with a project to beat mp3 to the punch and you know who won. But as a result, I did a lot of critical listening with speakers and headphones. I too did a lot of looking for headphones to go with my new G5 iPod and called UE. Got the UE10 product manager on the line and had quite a nice chat.

The UE10s are meant as studio monitors, they reveal every flaw in the music so technicians and performers can make changes. A huge number of professionals use these in ear monitors, which shows how well they work. The Super.Fi 5s are a different animal. These are for the listening public. They are deliberately 'curved' to make everyone's music sound as good as possible. It is not in the best interest of all music to be too accurate or well defined. You can't have your cake and eat it too. The simple message was buy the Super.Fi5's if you have an iPod and the UE10's if you make a living running a sound board.

These are wonderful monitors. I've had to use the foam inserts to make them fit my ears, but my audiologist had no luck making her equipment fit either. Yes, the sound is warm and perhaps lacks the absolute detail in the highs, but it is magnificant. Track after track the music appears in your head as you have never heard it before. You will not regret an hour spent with these headphones.

Also, I believe that if you create a custom EQ on iTunes and assign it to every song, then choose no EQ on the iPod, it will default to the custom EQ you created as default on iTunes.

Chao

Posted by CoastalQ on August 19, 2006 at 9:16 PM (PDT) Comment 24

I bought mine last November and tried to use them for the first time in months. They were cracked wide open!

Looked around iLounge forums and Headfi and found it's a defect and UE has been replacing them.

Well I've emailed and phoned them (left a message) and they are not responding.

Maybe there should at least be an update to the iLounge review that these first designs were defective?

And get a clarification from UE whether they're going to honor warranties and exchange them?

Where would we go for exchanges (which email, phone number)?

Posted by wco81 on August 20, 2006 at 11:47 AM (PDT) Comment 25
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