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Shure SE846-CL Sound Isolating Earphones with Quad High Definition MicroDrivers and True Subwoofer by Review Summary ,  Aug 21, 2015

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Shure SE846-CL Sound Isolating Earphones with Quad High Definition MicroDrivers and True Subwoofer
Report Date: 01/03/2016
Based on 162 customer reviews
Overall satisfaction: 4.6
Returned or considering to return: 3.7%

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Frequently Mentioned by Customers:


Individual Feature Rating
Fit4.4   average
Noise4.4   above average
Sound4.4   average
Comfortable4.3   average
Quality4.3   average
Price4.2   average
Cable4.1   above average
Music4.1   average
Listening4.0   average
iPhone4.0   average
Treble3.9   below average
Frequency3.8   average


Quotes from the Reviews - What People Say about:

Audio

Audio:
"I've tried the Universals for JH Audio and they didn't sound as good as these Shure SE846s."
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"I really don't even like JH Audio because their customer service is HORRIBLE, HORRIBLE, HORRIBLE, but at the end of the day, they make the most awesome sounding IEM's on the planet.."
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"- Non-audio enthusiast with little disposable income - suggest to look elsewhere, these are not worth your hard earned money (to me it's like buying a really expensive bottle of wine, but unfortunately I don't know how to appreciate the taste of it)- Non-audio enthusiast with moderate disposable income - suggest you to save some more money and start with some cheaper UIEMs (maybe Shure SE535 or Westone 4R) before venturing into high-end UIEMs - Non-audio enthusiast with a high disposable income - suggest to buy them, even if you might not appreciate them, as much as, the audio enthusiasts."
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"Pros:- Provides previously unattainable deep low-end performance of a True Subwoofer without sacrificing clarity or detail- Adjustable sound signatures available- Prevents outside noise from interfering with your audio experienceCheck out the rest of the list for other great Shure headphones: http: boldlist."
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"First of all I am no audio expert, but I do appreciate good quality sound, or at least have been learning to appreciate it over the past few years."
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"Love these things..Even better with Moon Audio Cables"
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"The JH Audio Roxannes are better [possibly the best in the world, even better than the K10 and Layla] with drum and tom sounds but the SE846's are good with the electronically generated bass sounds that you hear in music today -- which is synthetically generated by computers, as opposed to being created by banging a drumstick against a surface.4."
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"I was looking for well balanced audio in a very small package."
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Cable

Cable:
"The headphones clearly hadn't been designed to be cleanable or have replaceable parts and that's rendered them pretty worthless now (The included Monster Cables were even more terrible in terms of durability)..."
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"After several years my Bose buds broke due to a cable failure."
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"The sennheiser are good if you aren't sitting still (many people complained about the ie800 becoming stiff due to cable issues, I have not encountered that).Sound wise- The ie800 have better over all clarity and transparency."
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"The shures are a little too big and the cable is really stiff and annoying."
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"(I know $700 is still high for a earphone)2) Since my needs are to hook this thing up my ipod iphone, my biggest complaint is that Shure did not include a cable with remote and mic."
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"Unfortunately it's a bit uncomfortable when I wear them this way as the upper part of the cable past the Y is only about 9.5 inches."
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"I picked up the optional iPhone compatible cable (in-line mic) and haven't swapped back to the standard cable."
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"There is nothing else you need to buy, the cables are fantastic, there is no aftermarket cable needed."
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"These headphones have massive drivers, require a quality amp dac setup aftermarket cable, and are not portable but to me it is worth it for the unbelievable sound and soundstage they put out."
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"While it originally listed for 90k- its recent radical devaluation (based on its remarkable bad quality) helped fund my purchase of these magnificent earbuds cables and provided change for some expensive gold plated hdmi cables."
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Comfortable

Comfortable:
"My only complaint with the Shure's is the comfort isnt as good as customs."
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"My comfort problem is that the earphone was actually resting on the outer edge of my ear, no matter how much I would adjust it."
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"(Actually these are very very comfortable and have great noise isolation."
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"By comfort I dont mean like pillows for your ears or forget youre wear them sort of comfort but there is no pain or discomfort caused by them."
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"Comfort: These are very comfortable and stay put in your ears."
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"But, the comfort level on SE846 is quite good."
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"My only complaint with the Shure's is the comfort isnt as good as customs."
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Design

Design:
"But, because there's only so much to tiny drivers transducers in earphone can do, get the design wrong and that warm earphone becomes muddy, or that detailed earphone becomes harsh and fatiguing."
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"Now the second reason why i love these is because of build quality and just the build design in general."
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"The headphones clearly hadn't been designed to be cleanable or have replaceable parts and that's rendered them pretty worthless now (The included Monster Cables were even more terrible in terms of durability)..."
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"------------------------------------------Shure has done a genuinely remarkable thing with the design engineering behind the SE846 and I certainly feel the price is okay for such work and especially the resulting performance; if you have the coin to spare and want pretty much the best sonics one can find today in the market of universal fit IEM's?"
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"I really enjoy the SE535's and combined with a clean, capable EQ, they can be made to quite nearly approximate the general frequency performance of the SE846, though the better separation among frequencies and the better isolation of individual players that are hallmarks of the SE846 sound, simply cannot be matched by the SE535 with any sort of hardware or software equalization; it is a simple matter of better physical engineering and design (great job, Shure!"
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"Design- The shures look better hands down, they have adequate amounts of weight to them and the replaceable cable is a huge plus compared the senneiser ie800sMicrophonics- The ie800s did encounter microphonics because of the cable and I could not move much in them."
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Fit

Fit:
"I'm not as pleased with the fit as I expected."
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"If you can't find a well fitting set of tips from the selections included, you have bigger problems."
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"I think that this is not only due to the comfort of the fit, but also the way that the music is experienced; it feels as though you are listening to speakers rather than earphones, but its better than that because the noise isolation gives you freedom from external distractions."
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"I have never seen isolation this good, just make sure you get a tight fit."
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"I have oddly shaped ears and typically have trouble with over ear iems however these fit perfectly."
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"The 535's are amazing enough, and fit excellent."
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"Even when stowed in the awesome mini-pouch they still fit in my pocket easily and I pretty much carry them around with me at all times, something i couldn't do with my Beats."
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"One possible explanation is: After trying the various ear-tips included with the phones and having purchased additional ones made by Shure and Comply, I have yet to get a confident and tight fit."
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Frequency

Frequency:
"Couldn't be more happy about that and the huge improvements in overall frequency retrieval and separation make the SE846 almost a perfect headphone for me."
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"It's not just the superior bass performance of the SE846 (which is significant), it's the high frequency presence, the sound staging, the instrument separation and micro detail retrieval, it's everything really."
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"Problem 2 Muddied lower frequency: being closed, shure IEMs always relied a lot on having a perfect seal."
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"And it delivers good higher frequency as well."
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"From the get go, the Shure house tendency towards neutrality and not over emphasizing any particular frequency really sat well with both my inner music producer, as well as my inner listener."
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"The bass comes and it comes in just that amount that the track recording calls for and is always in perfect relation to the high frequencies and the mid range frequencies."
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"They provide exceptional clarity and all frequencies come through to provide an amazing sound signature."
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"Filters on the shure se846- I found the Nuetral one to be the best, since the others altered the frequency response, and I generally prefer a balanced sound."
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Listening

Listening:
"Now I can't listen to the barely used SE535 because these have ruined my listening expectation."
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"The one upgrade I can say is that I don't prefer the standard foam tips that come with these, they are slightly uncomfortable after long listening periods."
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"The rest of the crew is simply unpleasant for listening to the music."
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"I am only listening to them via an iPhone, I'm scared to play them via a portable headphone amp as I know I will like it but can I justify spending another x hundred dollars?"
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"I've purchased headphones that cost more than the SE846 and disappointment is the best way to describe listening to them."
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"You see, while audiophile reference-systems using components similar to the ones mentioned above remain out of reach for many, buying a good set of 'phones, hooking them up to decent amplification and listening to well recorded material will get you 9 10ths of a reference-class system for a fraction of the price."
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"Well, after several weeks of ownership and listening to various types of music from soft to hard, I can honestly say I am a tad disappointed."
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"I own everything from high end custom IEMs to the Shure 535 to the UE 900, and these are the best IEMs I have ever heard, and this is just from listening to them with a rockboxed sandisk."
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"These are simply the best music listening devices I have ever heard owned!"
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"In my opinion, these IEM's sound outstanding across the various genres that I tend listening to: EDM, Adult, Alternative Rock and Singer-Songwriter."
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Music

Music:
"These simply blew me away, the sound is crystal clear, it literally sounds like i'm sitting in the recording studio listening to the artists perform right in front of me... As a consequence though these can also bring out the worst in your music, any noise or artifacts in your music become blatantly obvious and once you get used to these things, every other headphone is just not good enough anymore...I don't know if these are the best in-ear headphones you can buy, there may be cheaper ones with similar quality, but i'd be amazed if there's anything that can sound better, at least with current mobile pc grade DACs"
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"I am very serious about music and one of the weird ones that will only listen to music if it is 16bit 44.1Khz or above Anything less is just hearing music."
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"I am hearing details in music I never heard before, excellent bass!"
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"SE846, while they have impressive technology packed inside, for an average music lover the cost-benefit is not that good."
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"But on the other hand there are several audio systems which do the same job( for example: yg acoustics anat iii signature, but price range is between $50,000 $100,000,which is dream for majority of us)So if you are a guy who wants such a premium quality music at 999USD ,it is worth to buy SE846.But if you want good quality music with budget value, 300USD, SONY XBAH3 do great JOB."
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"On the other hand when using SE846 ,I can easily identify and NOTICE ,each and every music instrument sound come from song."
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"Well IMO it is well worth it if you love your music and are thoroughly dedicated about your headphones."
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"They are not perfect (nothing is), but they do such a good job of reproducing sound, of truly making a recording come back to life as music, that they are considered without fault."
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"Excellent, especially when used with the PONO music player in Balanced Mood."
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Noise

Noise:
"These simply blew me away, the sound is crystal clear, it literally sounds like i'm sitting in the recording studio listening to the artists perform right in front of me... As a consequence though these can also bring out the worst in your music, any noise or artifacts in your music become blatantly obvious and once you get used to these things, every other headphone is just not good enough anymore...I don't know if these are the best in-ear headphones you can buy, there may be cheaper ones with similar quality, but i'd be amazed if there's anything that can sound better, at least with current mobile pc grade DACs"
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"I previously owned a $300.00 Bose pair of noise cancelling earbuds and they were crappy compared to the 535's."
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"(Actually these are very very comfortable and have great noise isolation."
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"There is [WAS] a caveat (and the [PREVIOUS] reason for a one-star deduction) is that sound isolation is, at best, modest in noisy environments such as the New York Subway and on city streets."
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"They have fantastic sound in my ears and the block out all the noise."
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"Read on for my take :-)Noise isolation:As far noise isolation, SE846 blocks out outside noise reasonably well because of their snug in-ear fit."
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"Those ear tips isolate noise very well."
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Price

Price:
"No pair of headphones is worth going broke over but if you have the money I cant imagine anyone not being thrilled with these."
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"But then I hit the button to buy the 846s.... For me to spend this much money on earbuds isn't a problem but I sure wasn't going to waste any money on something that wasn't all that great."
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"I was hoping that the 846s would be just a little better than the 535s as the price difference is ridiculous."
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"Treble- The shures for $1000, have a treble roll off which is unacceptable considering the price."
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"I really did smile when I first heard these; with my old SE535s I was rather disappointed, but these are truly worth the price."
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"::Value::8 10 - At the price they ask for these, I can't say that they are the best value but they are some seriously great sounding IEM's."
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"Didn't receive any of the exchangeable filters or the tool as I've seen on video reviews, they sound good, but doesn't *wow* at the price range, will be looking to buy used, I didn't receive all parts, what a joke."
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"But then I hit the button to buy the 846s.... For me to spend this much money on earbuds isn't a problem but I sure wasn't going to waste any money on something that wasn't all that great."
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"those of you who like to think you can be happy with a lesser earphone will spend a lot of money (like I did) before you eventually buy these."
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"So, in sum, while these are nice, they are not worth the price tag, at least not in my opinion."
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Quality

Quality:
"If you have reference grade full sized headphones and a quality DAC AMP, these will disappoint."
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"If you need something that is mobile without sacrificing sound quality you absolutely wont go wrong if you buy these."
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"Long-term comfort:With Over-ear phones (as good as they are with sound quality), the one complaint I always had was my ears getting warm or sweaty after prolonged (over an hour or sometimes even less) wear."
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"From the first time you slowly unbox the SE846 to the time you check all the included accessories, it oozes quality and luxury (and it is not the best part yet).The best part is when you start listening to them, going through those reference tracks you always listen to with your other UIEMs (knowing there were some shortcomings or wishing something a little bit more less, in certain parts of the songs); and finding out that the SE846 can handle your expectations (with the 3 replaceable bright balanced warm nozzles).I hope the above will be helpful to potential buyers."
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"While Shure promotes the bass quality, I don't listen to (and don't usually enjoy) bass-heavy music."
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"But on the other hand there are several audio systems which do the same job( for example: yg acoustics anat iii signature, but price range is between $50,000 $100,000,which is dream for majority of us)So if you are a guy who wants such a premium quality music at 999USD ,it is worth to buy SE846.But if you want good quality music with budget value, 300USD, SONY XBAH3 do great JOB."
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"I purchased these after much research....and am very happy with build quality and sonic soundscape."
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"While it originally listed for 90k- its recent radical devaluation (based on its remarkable bad quality) helped fund my purchase of these magnificent earbuds cables and provided change for some expensive gold plated hdmi cables."
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")+ sounds amazing even without a high quality DACand the cons:- Takes a few seconds to put on properly- Expensive?"
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"In short these are the pros:+ impressively small form factor+ unbelievably good sound+ good build quality+ replaceable ear buds and connector cables+ unassuming appearance (Some may consider this a con, but this has saved my pair from being stolen more than once!"
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Range

Range:
"I replaced the default cones with ones that enhance the high range since I enjoy crisp pronounced highs - but each cone sounded good in its own right."
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"Didn't receive any of the exchangeable filters or the tool as I've seen on video reviews, they sound good, but doesn't *wow* at the price range, will be looking to buy used, I didn't receive all parts, what a joke."
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"I think there is just as much bass there as these is in these headphones....Over all, the quality, accessories, and dynamic range of the headphones are great."
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"I would put a section here discussing the mid range but suffice it to say, the SE846 come with the same, rather pronounced and confident mid range presentation that the SE535's and most other Shure headphones count as hallmark."
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"The bass comes and it comes in just that amount that the track recording calls for and is always in perfect relation to the high frequencies and the mid range frequencies."
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Sound

Sound:
"Indeed, this is what strikes me as the most compelling thing about the SE846: everything sounds as it should, nothing seems misplaced or pronounced."
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"They are not perfect (nothing is), but they do such a good job of reproducing sound, of truly making a recording come back to life as music, that they are considered without fault."
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"Flac files sound absolutely ridiculous."
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"But I love it and I cant imagine anyone buying this thing and thinking it doesn't sound great."
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"There is [WAS] a caveat (and the [PREVIOUS] reason for a one-star deduction) is that sound isolation is, at best, modest in noisy environments such as the New York Subway and on city streets."
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"Im not saying these are bad because they are not at all, they do sound great but i was expecting more."
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"AMAZING product, astonishing sound."
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"Sound isolation is perfect, highs are high - lows are low and the mids are right where they should be."
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"However after playing several Songs (POP ROCK) I realized that, SE846 has GREAT separation(L R separation for stereo sound).Sony XBAH3 also has this separation but it does not highlight as SE846.So SE846 doing great job in sound separation."
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"So as a precautionary step before it attached to earphone , I just use air blower to throw away that very tiny form partials)REVIEW:When consider BOSS , this SHURE SE846 has Phenomenal, incomparable sound so I just eliminate BOSS from this review."
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Treble

Treble:
"It was disappointing of the treble roll off which got me the most, if the shures were brighter then they would easily be better than the ie800s."
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"Treble- The shures for $1000, have a treble roll off which is unacceptable considering the price."
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"(Actually almost same as my previous SONY XBAH3 which has excellent treble."
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"Treble as near to perfection as you can get, and Balanced Armatures that actually give clean, clear, low bass."
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"It was disappointing of the treble roll off which got me the most, if the shures were brighter then they would easily be better than the ie800s."
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"ie800 Mids : 8 10Bass: 9 10Treble: 9 10Shure se846Mids- 10 10Bass- 1010Treble- 9 10The treble is amazing, however treble heads might find it rolling off."
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Volume

Volume:
"An interesting thing is that as I would switch from the SE846 back to the SE535, I had a very intense and nagging desire to keep turning the SE535's volume up, thinking that if I did so, I would be able to hear the same sort of details I was getting via the SE846; but increasing the volume thru the SE535 just didn't assuage that nagging itch; in the end, I realized it was simply a matter of the SE846 being a much more resolving listen and there was no issue or discrepancy with the volume setting when switching between the two IEM's."
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"I sat one day for over an hour just turning the volume way down and way up, marveling at how in the world they kept the relationship between highs mids lows so consistently perfect no matter how loud or soft the volume became, truly a feat."
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"That last bit is perhaps the most astonishing facet of the SE846, the fact that at any volume, from the subtlest of settings to the loudest, the SE846 remains absolutely well behaved, with everything in it's place."
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"All of the sounds are crystal clear at all volumes, which is a good thing but something to get used to."
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iPhone

iPhone:
"(I know $700 is still high for a earphone)2) Since my needs are to hook this thing up my ipod iphone, my biggest complaint is that Shure did not include a cable with remote and mic."
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"I am only listening to them via an iPhone, I'm scared to play them via a portable headphone amp as I know I will like it but can I justify spending another x hundred dollars?"
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"Honestly, though, that's the ONLY downside I see in these IEM's is that they don't include an iPhone compatible cable like their competitors."
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"I picked up the optional iPhone compatible cable (in-line mic) and haven't swapped back to the standard cable."
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"The iPhone 6 was really good with music purchased from the iTunes store as well as ALAC files."
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"Bose QC20i NC, Westone ES3X, Sennheiser IE 800, Grado GR10, Shure SE535, Sennheiser IE 8i, Westone W40, Monster Copper Turbine PRO, Westone UM3x , Sony XBA-4IP, Klipsch Image X10i, Miles Davis Trumpet High Performance In-ear Headphones, Audio Technica ATH-ANC23, Pioneer SE-NC31C-K, Sony XBA-NC85D, AKG K391 NC, Sennheiser CXC 700, Denon AH-NC600, Sony MDR-NC22, Polk Audio AM6617-A, TDK BA-200, Etymotic Research ER-4PT, Shure SE110, VSonic GR07, BeoPlay H3, Shure SE315-CL, Monster Cable Earth Wind and Fire Gratitude, VSonic GR07 MK2 Pro, Yamaha EPH-100SL, TDK Life on Record IE800, Bose MIE2i , Ferrari AAV-1LFE014K Cavallino T150i, JVC HA-FXZ200, Fischer Audio DBA-02, Sony XBA-3IP, Munitio NINES Tactical Earphones, Brainwavz R3, Bang & Olufsen A8, Sennheiser CX 985, Etymotic Research HF5, Beats By Dr. Dre - Beats Tour Earbud, Beats By Dr. Dre - Powerbeats, Creative Aurvana 3, Beats By Dr. Dre - urBeats, Beats Tour, Beyerdynamic DTX101, Monster Cable Diesel, Soul by Ludacris SLF02CB, JBL J33i, Klipsch Image S4i-II , Acoustic Research AR HP1020, Audio-Technica ATH-CKS99, Philips S2BK 28 Fidelio, Monster Turbine High Performance, RHA MA750i, Beyerdynamic MMX 101, Klipsch Reference S4i, Fischer Audio Consonance, Sennheiser CX 870, SOL Republic 1102-61, SKULLCANDY 50 50 , SoundMAGIC E10M, Apple In-Ear Headphones MA850G B, Apple iPhone 5 Earbuds, Pioneer SE-CL541i, CREATIVE HS-660i2,If you are a Exceptional Music Listener and Music Enthusiast, do not think about the other earphones in the world!"
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"At 9 ohms,the iPhone 5s has no problem driving the SE 846."
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"Seems the iPhone 5s has a decent sound chip."
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