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Good ear bud options for in-ear monitors?

Discussion in 'Live Sound [BG]' started by bopeuph, May 17, 2017.


  1. bopeuph

    bopeuph

    Jul 3, 2007
    Orlando, FL
    90% of all the gigs I do involve stage monitoring. Usually only in churches do they ever use an in-ear setup, and I always forget about that until I show up to a rehearsal, and they have those modern earbuds provided for me.

    I loathe earbuds. No matter how many times I shove them up into my ears, they don't stay for an entire tune; and if they do, my ears are in a lot of pain from the pressure in my ear canals.

    Typically what happens is that I fight with the buds the entire time, and go home with my ear canals all scratched up inside, and sometimes even bleeding.

    I'd like a pair of those old school earbuds instead. Does anyone have suggestions?

    I'm looking at Sennheiser MX 365, Edifier H180, and some dirt cheap consumer grades. Debating on buying one or a few on Amazon to try out (you can't find these old school buds at a brick-and-mortar store any more).

    Any experience with this?
     
  2. lz4005

    lz4005

    Oct 22, 2013
    Get custom molded ones. They will fit you perfectly without irritation. Either that or wear big over the ear cans.
     
  3. bopeuph

    bopeuph

    Jul 3, 2007
    Orlando, FL
    Custom just seems not financially sound, since I probably play 2-3 gigs a year that require in-ear monitoring. I have the cans, but they look unruly on stage...I think a church actually stopped calling me because I used them!

    I know that Vic once said they used the earbuds in the Flecktones because they liked not having the isolation, but I'm sure a lot of it has to do with the fact that they do use a lot of stage monitoring.
     
  4. PhatBasstard

    PhatBasstard Spector Dissector Supporting Member

    Feb 3, 2002
    Las Vegas, NV.
    Just in case:
    For Sale - Almost New: Shure SE425 Dual Driver In Ears
    FWIW, I find these very comfortable and will stay put if inserted properly (with the right sized tips used).
    All the tips are a soft, pliable material. The black ones are actually memory foam.
    Good Luck.
     
  5. s0c9

    s0c9 Supporting Member

    Jan 9, 2014
    Ft.Worth/Dallas
    1964 Audio artist, Fractal Audio Beta Tester
    That's a good price.
    FWIW - a quick google will show that you can get them NIB from Sweetwater, B&H, Sam Ash, MF and so on for $269
     
  6. When I used IEMs at church, I purchased a set of Klipsch earbuds at FYE or someplace like that. They were about $80 or so and were fantastic. Great bass response. I dont need all of the three channel crap. They also had rubber tips and an assortment of sizes and came in a neat little tin to keep them in. Some of the best money I've spent on gear as far as investment vs. use.

    BnB
     
  7. bopeuph

    bopeuph

    Jul 3, 2007
    Orlando, FL
    Just to reiterate: I'm looking for an outer-ear option for when I'm stuck in a situation that requires IEM. A one-size-fits or any IEM's provided by the sound crew never stay in and cause pain. I'm wondering about the success people might have had with classic earbuds that cover the ear canal and don't go inside.

    *IEM's keep pushing out.

    *If I manage to get them to stay in, they cause pain due to pressure in the middle ear.

    *If I have to keep reinserting the IEM's, they scratch up my ear canals.

    *I use IEMs very rarely; a handful of gigs a year--most people are still cool with stage monitoring--so custom IEM's is a bad expense.

    Due to these key points, I want options that don't involve shoving foreign objects into my ears.
     
  8. s0c9

    s0c9 Supporting Member

    Jan 9, 2014
    Ft.Worth/Dallas
    1964 Audio artist, Fractal Audio Beta Tester
    I recommend you visit an audiologist and get an opinion..
    Sounds like you have the same problem as I did. Small ear canals, and your symptoms reflect EXACTLY what I dealt with at the time because I did NOT KNOW that universal fits buds will NOT work for me.. EVER.
    I pushed the bands I was in to go IEM to protect our (my?) ears. Church was headed that way also.. so it was a great catalyst.
    That said.. customs were my only solution.. been 99.99999% IEM for 5+ yrs now, wherever I play.
    Sadly, I can't suggest what you are looking for.. I'm not sure that they - other than the over-ear type or full-on circumaural - even exist.
     
  9. bopeuph

    bopeuph

    Jul 3, 2007
    Orlando, FL
    Thanks. Yeah, if I had a regular church gig that used IEM, I would buy my own with the custom option. Interestingly, the only regularly paid church gig in town hired me and was going to buy me some, but that gig didn't work out. I play a lot of performing arts center style of venues where there's a lot of stage monitoring. Besides church gigs, the only IEM gig I think I had this year was Game of Thrones. It just seems like something that wouldn't exactly pay for itself for me.
     
  10. s0c9

    s0c9 Supporting Member

    Jan 9, 2014
    Ft.Worth/Dallas
    1964 Audio artist, Fractal Audio Beta Tester
    Oh I get it.. budget is always a factor, and in your case probably not cost-effective.
    However, and audiologist visit might now hurt.. so at least you KNOW ! Your symptoms are EERILY similar to what mine were.
    Anyways.. again, don't know of any over ear buds.. Have you tried the typical iPhone-style buds.. Don't go in the canal, but sit outside?
     
  11. bopeuph

    bopeuph

    Jul 3, 2007
    Orlando, FL
    Yeah, I just bought a set of Sennheiser earbuds on Amazon. They probably won't come close to the quality of IEM, but at least I'll be able to hear the isolated drums and the guitars. I don't really care about quality anyway, I just want to be able to lock in that pocket.

    One of these days, I'll visit an audiologist. Until then, I am avoiding anything that goes inside the ear.

    For about a month, I tried iPhone style earbuds while running, and when I finally got them to stay in, I was experiencing a lot of earaches throughout the day, even after running.
     
  12. I started using Sure 215 iem, they come with a few different sized tips and the largest work for me. I like it so much that I ordered molded IEMs. Tired of leaving practice with ringing.
     

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