This week’s picture post is all about Custom Inear Monitors. It’s safe to say I’m a bit of a fan, some might even call me an addict and with a collection as shown in the picture, they just might be right.
I remember my very first CIEM, it was a Cosmic Ears Hybrid with two balanced armatures and one dynamic driver. While I don’t have that monitor anymore, it was what got me hooked to the great sound, awesome isolation and a perfect and painless fit.
Basically that’s exactly what customs stand for and these are also the same three reasons why I don’t really get why you would spend hundreds or even thousands of hard earned Dollars or Euros on universal shelled IEMs. There are a few universal IEMs I can appreciate and while some of them really sound great, they hardly fit my ears, they don’t isolate at all compared to customs and they in the end just don’t get the same level of sound.
I can understand that in some humid climates custom monitors aren’t the most ideal but all my friends there just use a dehumidifier or drybox. I can also see why some might not like the feeling of not hearing any outside noise or just feeling something filling up your ear completely. The two most used arguments however for not getting customs are the fact that you need to get ear impressions and that they’re expensive. Personally I love the feeling of my ear canals filling up with goo, it has a refreshing feel. Second, I can’t agree that price is an issue anymore. It might have been a few years ago but nowadays a one, two or three driver custom won’t set you back that much. In fact, you can already have a 3-driver for under $350.
The only non-custom IEMs I really can appreciate fit-wise are the German InEar, and with their Stage Diver SD2, SD3 and especially the SD4 they sound really good as well!
Over the years I have managed to convince several of my friends to go for customs IEMs and they all agree it is a whole other world with a whole other level of sound. Are universal IEMs bad? No not at all, but I seriously doubt you’ll be able to enjoy them just as much once you’ve heard them in the custom version.
Do think about it. Really. And if you’re not convinced, check out Inear.
Cosmic Ears: http://www.cosmicears.com/shop/
Dry Box: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B003I7WMGC/