Sony IER-M7 Measurement and Review

Discussion in 'IEM Measurements' started by purr1n, May 17, 2021.

  1. purr1n

    purr1n Building Magnis part time because it's peaceful.

    Staff Member Friend BWC
    Joined:
    Sep 24, 2015
    Likes Received:
    75,348
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location:
    Padre Island CC TX
    @rhythmdevils sent these to me just before I decided to move to TX, hence the delay. I think I can honestly say that I think I've finally put my shit back together now. I still need a few more items, like more storage, and a real desk! I was thinking of getting myself a really nice desk, but I think those funds will have to go toward an APx555. Words cannot express how difficult it is to stay organized with all those boxes of gear!

    PXL_20210519_012126109.NIGHT.jpg

    The M7 is a dark warmish sounding IEM. Pinna gain is tuned to a minimum, just a bit. The upper mids and lower treble are scooped. Basically those into a stereotypical Chinese IEM kind of voicing that enhances the genre of beautiful female vocal should stay away, far away from the IER-M7. Think of the tonal balance of the M7 like the Andromeda, but without the mid-treble peak, or like the Andromeda 2020, but with crappier technicalities: the resolution isn't anywhere close, the upper mids on to the highs are OK, the top octave is muted, the lows to mids are veiled like the HD650 on mediocre amps. I sense a lot of distortion. My bet is high second order just as much third order. I do find the frequency response agreeable and rather smooth throughout the audio band. This is the M7's greatest strength. The rest is rather questionable.

    For now, I will just provide the frequency response and impedance. I'm trying to get started on these, so doing these few measurements tonight will force me to provide distortion measurements maybe tomorrow.

    Sony IER-M7
    Frequency Response
    upload_2021-5-17_22-9-4.png

    Sony IER-M7 vs Andromeda 2020 (WHT)
    Frequency Response
    upload_2021-5-17_22-15-6.png

    Sony IER-M7 vs Nair (WHT)
    Frequency Response
    upload_2021-5-17_22-16-51.png

    Sony IER-M7
    Impedance
    upload_2021-5-17_22-17-38.png

    Higher source impedance can be expected to lift the upper mids and lower highs.
     
    • Like / Agree Like / Agree x 6
    • List
    Last edited: May 18, 2021
  2. rhythmdevils

    rhythmdevils Best SBAF member of all time

    Staff Member Friend
    Joined:
    Apr 15, 2020
    Likes Received:
    4,068
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location:
    Bay Area
    Haha. It’s been a while but I thought their strengths deserve a little more praise than that despite everything below the mids sounding like rubber. I also expect to see a lot of distortion. But the FR and tonal balance is IMO one of the best of any iems I’ve heard. No Nair but very good for a slightly warmer sound. Yes maybe a bit dark but I had no real complaints. Very natural. And their treble response does something really special with cymbals. Though I thought they lacked air ultimately. But not that big a deal.

    I thought if they gave them 36 more bass/mid drivers they’d have a really fantastic iem. But they added an upper treble driver for the M9. Not what they need.
     
    • Like / Agree Like / Agree x 2
    • List
  3. Biodegraded

    Biodegraded Friend

    Friend
    Joined:
    May 28, 2017
    Likes Received:
    5,423
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location:
    Vancouver BC
    Relative to a notional zero-impedance source (red line):
    Orange - 4 Ohms (approx. Ifi Nano etc. IEMatch jack, Valhalla 2 low gain)
    Green - 10 Ohms (HiBy R6 OG)
    Blue - 14 Ohms (Valhalla 2 high gain)
    Purple - 26 Ohms (Loxjie P20 SE out, SW 51 lo out).

    [​IMG]

    Not too sensitive. The boost from the c. 2.5 Ohms output Z of various Sony DAPs and the Ifi IEMatch dongle on 'high' setting (between the red & orange lines) would be undetectable by mortals.
     
    • Like / Agree Like / Agree x 5
    • List
  4. YMO

    YMO it's not drinking alone if you're on Zoom

    Friend
    Joined:
    Apr 1, 2018
    Likes Received:
    7,141
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location:
    DUVALLL-904
    I should send you my IER-M9 to see if you detect the distortion. (most likely the answer is yes).
     
  5. purr1n

    purr1n Building Magnis part time because it's peaceful.

    Staff Member Friend BWC
    Joined:
    Sep 24, 2015
    Likes Received:
    75,348
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location:
    Padre Island CC TX
    It was the rubber part that I couldn't get past. I guess I'm spoiled having been exposed to Nair, Andro 2020, Solaris OG. Taking distortion measurements now.
     
  6. purr1n

    purr1n Building Magnis part time because it's peaceful.

    Staff Member Friend BWC
    Joined:
    Sep 24, 2015
    Likes Received:
    75,348
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location:
    Padre Island CC TX
    Now this is a weird one. It this a BA or not? It's BA like the mids and maybe highs, there some signs of BA in the lows with the close grouping of the third harmonic for each SPL. However in the lows, the second harmonic dominate, which is the opposite of most BAs. TBH, the lows subjectively sounded more DD like than BA, at least in timbre, but not in impact or heft.

    upload_2021-5-18_20-7-27.png

    Overall distortion is a bit on the higher side. Third order is funky is that its low for the bass but rather high, in the upper bass and lower mids (and 2-4kHz region too).
     
    • Like / Agree Like / Agree x 3
    • List
  7. purr1n

    purr1n Building Magnis part time because it's peaceful.

    Staff Member Friend BWC
    Joined:
    Sep 24, 2015
    Likes Received:
    75,348
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location:
    Padre Island CC TX
    Holy cow, just found out. Why is this IEM $500? I would rather spend $30k on an APx555 than $500 for this.

    Obligatory review photo here:
    PXL_20210519_011514400.NIGHT.jpg
     
    • Like / Agree Like / Agree x 2
    • List
  8. YMO

    YMO it's not drinking alone if you're on Zoom

    Friend
    Joined:
    Apr 1, 2018
    Likes Received:
    7,141
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location:
    DUVALLL-904
    Custom drivers made by Sony inside. Also...it's a Sony. I got my used IER-M9 with five BA drivers for $700ish, and yeah some could say that might still be much. I still like the sound thou....
     
    • Like / Agree Like / Agree x 1
    • List
  9. purr1n

    purr1n Building Magnis part time because it's peaceful.

    Staff Member Friend BWC
    Joined:
    Sep 24, 2015
    Likes Received:
    75,348
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location:
    Padre Island CC TX
    Maybe the M9 are a bit better. Sony probably nerfed the M7 in some odd way. The M7 just needed a little bit to be a winner.
     
  10. YMO

    YMO it's not drinking alone if you're on Zoom

    Friend
    Joined:
    Apr 1, 2018
    Likes Received:
    7,141
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location:
    DUVALLL-904
    If you are drunk/high you can borrow my pair. However, I don't think the differences between the M7 and the M9 are that big anyway, and the M9 still has that warm not really dynamic type of sound. I can make it get close by just turning the damn volume loud. Hell...that's @shotgunshane recommendation on his list.
     
    • Like / Agree Like / Agree x 1
    • List
  11. purr1n

    purr1n Building Magnis part time because it's peaceful.

    Staff Member Friend BWC
    Joined:
    Sep 24, 2015
    Likes Received:
    75,348
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location:
    Padre Island CC TX
    Ahh. So that explains the weird DD, not DD, BA, not BA sound of the drivers. Custom BA drivers from Sony. I couldn't quite put my finger on it.
     
    • Like / Agree Like / Agree x 3
    • List
  12. Degru

    Degru Facebook Friend

    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2017
    Likes Received:
    133
    Trophy Points:
    33
    Location:
    Portland, OR
    Hey, I'm not the only one. I found M7 to be roughly on a similar level to ATH-IM02 when I demoed it.
     
  13. rhythmdevils

    rhythmdevils Best SBAF member of all time

    Staff Member Friend
    Joined:
    Apr 15, 2020
    Likes Received:
    4,068
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location:
    Bay Area
    i doubt it. I’m pretty sure the M9 is just an M7 with an extra high treble driver. I mean that's what it is on paper. I can’t imagine fixing that bass without a whole overhaul which seems unlikely.
     
  14. limesoft

    limesoft Facebook Friend

    Joined:
    Oct 4, 2016
    Likes Received:
    210
    Trophy Points:
    43
    Location:
    London
    These are one of the best all rounders for me and scale very well with strong amplification and dacs. I agree they can be a bit soft impact sounding in mids/bass but this is helped with better amp. They sound wide and open next to Andromedas, but Andromeda does it's thing no other BA can do - however after listening to the M7 for a while and going to the Andro, the BA timbre of the Andro is obvious - so I have lot of respect what the M7 pulls off; takes the positives of BA and marries them with dynamics, all highlighted with a very nice frequency response and good soundstage, not to mention excellent comfort, cables and package
     
    • Like / Agree Like / Agree x 2
    • List
  15. rhythmdevils

    rhythmdevils Best SBAF member of all time

    Staff Member Friend
    Joined:
    Apr 15, 2020
    Likes Received:
    4,068
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location:
    Bay Area
    If they’ve got rubbery bass on my 789 with Sigma 11 LPS I can’t imagine what kind of amp would fix it. This thing is dynamic as hell for BA’s.
     
    • Like / Agree Like / Agree x 1
    • List
  16. limesoft

    limesoft Facebook Friend

    Joined:
    Oct 4, 2016
    Likes Received:
    210
    Trophy Points:
    43
    Location:
    London
    What do you mean by rubbery bass exactly? Like it's over dampened and decays too fast or?

    I find it scales very well and is honest to the source. It sounds nice out of my Sony ZX507 balanced out, but it blows my mind out of the ican micro SE + chord qutest; I can easily hear a massive improvement - assuming mostly because of the DAC. But not many headphones give me this massive jump where I go wow i can clearly hear the benefits in the first few seconds.. with this combination it gives an amazing delicacy, realism, wide soundstage and generous bass - I wouldn't be sad if this were my only IEM.

    The Andromeda for example sounds good out of most sources and isn't too interested about 5-10% DAC improvements, where the IERM7 clearly shows it.

    Sure they can improve in some areas, but they get so much stuff right I think 500$ is a very fair price..
     
    Last edited: Jun 2, 2021

Share This Page