I appreciate the callouts to the KZ ZS10 and the Final Audio e3000. However, I’ve got the KZ ZSN and a 1More Triple driver, an older Vsonic, and somewhere in the house is a pair of Etymolic ER-6’s hiding under something. My go-to IEM is the Sennheiser IE 40 Pro, which I find pretty acceptable (in the $99 context).
What I’m looking to find is a definitive step up. I don’t know where that is. Planar-magnetic? I liked the original STAX SR-001, not that I’d actually buy a pair. I don’t think that jamming more BA speakers into a small space is going to do it. One reason I like the IE-40 Pro is that it’s a single dynamic driver. So it’s very coherent.
I don’t get to where I can hear the Zeus, Noble, or high end Campfires. And I’m not looking to pay those kinds of prices. If I’m going to blow a grand or more, it’s going to be on a new pair of STAX, probably Lambda SR-L300L or SR-L700s, or if I’m feeling rich an SR-007 Mark II used. Or something.
I’m not a fan of the heavy V signature. I do like extended and deep bass, but don’t want something that just bleats 150Khz in my ears… Some of the music I listen to has deep organ pipes, or electronic sounds, or well, cannons.