IEM eartips

I use both the Shure SE846 IEM’s and the Shure 1540’s. I love the 846’s, but I’ve never gotten comfortable with the ear tips supplied. Can anyone recommend eartips that they think are comfortable?

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Comply make the best IMO. I have dozens on hand of each size and whenever I het a new IEM I change the tips out immediately.


I agree. Although I find they sometimes get a little too soft when they warm up (which can cause them to fall out if the iems are a little heavier or aren’t looped over the ear)

Interesting. I have never had them fall out on me. I don’t like IEMs that loop over my ears so I never buy them. I prefer them to hand straight down. I usually select the size the is a bit tight and that’s probably why they never fly out on me. of course I don’t wear them to exercise either.

I’ll second the Comply suggestion if you are looking for foam ear tips. They extend the warmth of the headphones and provide great isolation. My ear canals are a bit tight, so once they are in and expanded, they aren’t coming out! I sometimes feel mild pressure when using these, since they do create a tight seal.

The problem with Comply tips is that they wear out super fast and you have to keep buying them. Not sure if the supplied eartips supplied with your SE846 is the same as the Shure Olives because I’ve always found them pretty comfortable.

I’ve also seen Spiral dots highly recommended.

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I was a comply guy for a long time until a headfi member I know toldme to try spinfits. He was a comply guy also but not now. The complies give a nice seal, good fit, enhance the low end and according to my friend suck all the high end and mids out of the sound…so I tried them on my newest iems I had just gotten, 64audio U4-SE …and he was right. I’m a drummer so drum sound is the key to a great mix and when you’ve sat and played for 40 years you know what they really sound like.
The spinfits give you a nice seal and I heard highs and mids and sounds I hadn’t heard before in the same group of songs. I didn’t know anything about sizing them, where or how to order…Amazon had some so I picked some and they worked. Still on the first set, they don’t get hard and are comfy all day for me.
I’ll continue using them in my U4-SEs but the other million iems I have still have complys.
I was shocked to hear the difference, I wanted him to be wrong but they performed better than the foam.
What ever works best for you is the main thought but spinfits are another option guys. Ed


I agree with this. When I tried Comply tips on a pair of ER4S, they changed the highs noticeably and made everything warmer. Of course this might be fine for some but it was a dealbreaker for me.

I also like spinfits! They give a great seal and doesn’t alter the sound for me, but I do think they can get a bit uncomfortable after a few hours without adjusting.

I appreciate all of the thoughtful replies to my question about eartips. They were very helpful. The Shure SE846’s are wonderful, and I enjoy them a great deal when I can get the tips planted right. Of course, people have varying ear sizes, but I believe that in the information you’ve provided, I will find a good answer. Thanks again.

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I own a Shure SE425 and substituted the tips with ones made by Etymotic Research. This seems to me a much better deal than the Spinfits. Maybe worth a try?


There’s also the custom molded option. Shure provides recommendations on their website.

If you’re hesitant about paying this price, I have also had some success with the two-compound custom molded earplugs. I followed this instruction guide:

The fit is nice and isolates sound well, but they are a bit firm until they warm up a bit from your body heat.

I actually recently picked up some New Bee foam tips off Amazon. Super cheap compared to Comply and I hoenstly can’t tell the difference in feel or sound when comparing directly with my Comply tips. I have used the New Bees on my KZ ZS6, Pinnacle PX, and Andromeda. They play well with all of them.

Sometimes I do find foam tips might muffle the highs a bit and I know my PX loses a bit of sparkle. I do think Spinfits are solid, but I also highly recommend JVC Spiraldots too. The Spiraldots have a wider bore so I find they will let the most treble through if you are worried about that.


Thanks, Sophie. I’ve been reading that the Comply tips wear out fast. I think that I’ll be doing a lot of experimenting.

Yeah, so I personally dislike foam tips in general as I really like my sparkly highs. But the New Bee tips sound interesting, and definitely competitively priced compared to Comply.

I was using Etymotic Foam before my molded set. I liked the passive sound attenuation but never compared them to other sets for audio quality. I did note molded had less negative impact on my E4s.

I have a pair of Shure SE535’s that had tips like the ones in the Etymotic Research link. I can say that initially, they were uncomfortable (it was like having a q-tip in your ear) but the more I wore the softer they got and formed to my ears.

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…the more I wore, the softer they got and formed to my ears. Best advise. I’ve always been told, the deeper the plugs set in your ears, the better the sound. Unfortunately most people have very sensitive ears and don’t want to set them that deep. Just like breaking in a new pair of hiking boots, you have to put them on and walk for days. Your ears are the same, you can’t put objects in your ears without some discomfort…you need to build up a tolerance regardless of them being foam or flanged. Whenever I’ve tried foam inserts, I loose too much of the music, so I stay with flanged units. Make sure to wash them at least once a week, not only to keep them clean, but also to check the fit; if the fit starts getting sloppy on the barrel, you risk them coming off in your ears. The plastic will break down depending on use, so be prepared to replace. For me, my favorites are the Etymotic 3 flanged clear, large. Etymotic


I concur. The very cheap Amazon New Bee foam tips worked well to bring the bass level up (slipping-out-of-ear issue) with my Noble IEMs. They are cheap enough to replace every week or every few weeks. They fit large output shafts well. I didn’t experience any other changes to the sound profile, just a tighter fit and better bass.


The etymonics er4 gray rubber ones are by far my favorite…

Once you get used to them I find I can play the music at a lower level because of the superior noise blocking

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The silicone takes a few minutes to warm up to your body temperature. Afterwards they become much more pliable and provide a tight fit (given that you were the right size). A tight fit is important for proper bass reproduction.