Ultimate Ears triple.fi 10 Pro Earphones | iLounge

Reviews

1

....i guess it's silly to ask, but....man, i wish those had ear hooks (sony mdr-ex81), or cable-over-ear design (shure e2c)....i hate pulling phones out of my ears accidentally when they get caught on the chair arm or whatever.

Posted by OnlyShawn on September 27, 2006 at 12:30 PM (PDT)

2

They do. For an inch or two coming out of the ear piece, the cord is "memory cord" which you can mold into an ear hook.

Posted by mattwardfh in Texas on September 27, 2006 at 1:04 PM (PDT)

3

ru huhuhuhu!!

(words don't even work...hadda go tool time)

Posted by OnlyShawn on September 29, 2006 at 7:01 AM (PDT)

4

hrm....i wonder if, also, those flanges are 'buyable'....

if they'd fit on my e2c's.

Posted by OnlyShawn on September 29, 2006 at 7:01 AM (PDT)

5

Jeremey-
I believe the metallic blue color just for the "Limited Edition" first run of 1000 headphones, and then they'll be offering other colors.

Posted by xluben on October 2, 2006 at 9:47 PM (PDT)

6

did you try the UE 'mod' of swapping the cables around to see if the fit is any better - seems to work quite well with the super.fi 5Pros, and it's now even on the UE site as an official 'alternative'

http://www.ultimateears.com/videos/index.htm#

Posted by yinyang on October 3, 2006 at 12:51 AM (PDT)

7

Excellent review, you hit everything I was wondering about.

Time for me to start saving for the new Shures, I guess. I've thoroughly beaten to death two pairs of the E5's. smile

Posted by stark23x on October 3, 2006 at 8:39 AM (PDT)

8

This review left me scratching my head about how they sound.

I see that:
the TF10P is supposed to be more lively in both high and low ends. But then it says they are flatter, and the E500 has more punch.
Then it says it's not as detailed, but says it's a ER4P (a superbly detailed phone) with more bass. It also says the E500 is more "full frequency" (which doesn't mean much to me). But then you say the Shure sounds less exaggerated (contradicting the TF10P as flatter)

So I still don't know how it stands in terms of its actual sound signature. The descriptions of the way it sounds could be a lot more clear.

Posted by rt on October 4, 2006 at 5:31 AM (PDT)

9

It's relatively simple. All of the triple-driver phones mentioned offer outstanding _detail_ across the audio spectrum - that's the reason you buy them over typical single- and double-driver canalphones. Etymotic essentially nailed 85-90% of the spectrum with the ER-4P, delivering extremely clean treble, mids, and mid-bass, with very tight (but not rich) bass, all with very "neutral" (read: accurate) delivery. The subsequently-released triple-driver phones specifically excel in adding low-end bass detail that's missing from the ER-4P, and for that, you pay a premium of $100, $200, or more.

Whereas the UE-10 Pro is a relatively neutral earpiece, like the ER-4P, provides bass detail but not emphasis, the triple.fi 10 Pro adds a little emphasis to certain parts of the spectrum (think three parts bass to one part treble, with corresponding tweaks to the mids), and the E500 adds even more. The explanation for this is that the companies have stopped aiming for flat, neutral sound and are now openly attempting to use the triple drivers to create more "enjoyable" listening, which translates roughly to "richer and smoother, plus detail lacking when you try to do the same thing with single-driver phones."

To our ears - and we had three different people test the triple.fis against the E500s, all in agreement on this point - the E500s sound the best. There's a certain energy in the audio that's missing in the triple.fis, and instruments are rendered more distinctly, with a little more pop. Because of the added energy, it appears that a small fraction of the audiophile community will regard the E500's sound as "forced," while the vast majority of listeners will absolutely love it. The triple.fis are sort of a mid-way point between the UE-10 Pros and the E500s on sound coloration.

Posted by Jeremy Horwitz in East Amherst, NY, USA on October 4, 2006 at 9:25 AM (PDT)

10

Very useful and helpful review. I really like my Shure e4c (far less dry than Etymotics) but will start saving for e500!

Posted by drevo_uk in UK on October 4, 2006 at 9:54 AM (PDT)

11

ok, thanks Jeremy

The one thing I didn't like about the Shure phones (all of them) is that the treble sounded too laid back compared to other headphones, they always lacked that treble sparkle that makes music sound live rather than listening through a "veil". Going from a Shure E5 to a AKG K701 was like pulling cottonballs out of my ears. In terms of IEM's, the UE10Pro is the only IEM that met my expectations for clarity and detail, and fullness of sound.

But you are saying the Shure E500 has more "energy" in both the high (!) and low ends of the frequency spectrum. This is kind of surprising for me to read. This makes it harder to decide between the two. The Shure E3 was one of the worst purchases I've made. I didn't want to make the same mistake again

Posted by rt on October 4, 2006 at 1:14 PM (PDT)

12

Ok could anybody compare tf 10pro to sf 5pro especialy in bass region(amount and richness).

Posted by Eskay on October 4, 2006 at 3:12 PM (PDT)

13

How do these compare to the Westone UM2's (which I have- they're fantastic)? While we're at it- how come you guys have never reviewed the Westones? Did they forget to send you a free pair?

Posted by afolpe on October 5, 2006 at 7:40 AM (PDT)

14

RT: The AKG K701 is one of the best headphones we've ever used - like the E500PTH, receipient of a flat A rating from us, albeit covered only briefly here because they're not especially portable. That said, my advice would be to preview the E500PTH to see whether you like the sound - if you like the K701, my gut feeling is that you will find the E500 to be similarly impressive.

Afolpe: UM2 and UM1 were just added to the site last week. Too many products to cover, too little time.

Posted by Jeremy Horwitz in East Amherst, NY, USA on October 5, 2006 at 8:58 AM (PDT)

15

Thanks. It would be interesting to read your comparison of the UM2 to the E500's, if you are able to get to it. Earphone solutions continues to rank the UM2 at least equal to the E500, which is interesting, since the UM2 is double, rather than triple driver. Anyway, I've been just thrilled with the performance of the UM2's with everything from screaming noise to solo female vocal.

Posted by afolpe on October 5, 2006 at 10:49 AM (PDT)

16

I disagree with your classification on the UE's price; I believe price considerations still applies here. After all, the E500PTHs are still 25% more than the price of the triple.fi 10 Pros. Yes, there are plenty who wouldn't batt an eye over the $100 difference, but there are far more who willingly have to scrape between every couch cushion available for the priviledge of owning the UEs. Price DOES matter, even in this canal bud stratosphere.

No different than what most of us then-starving hi-fi fans had to do when building our first 'ultimate' stereo rigs.

Posted by flatline response on October 7, 2006 at 9:56 AM (PDT)

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