2013 Munich High End Show: HiFiMAN RE-400 and RE-600
Never at a loss for a new product, Fang Bien of HiFiMAN gave me a listen to his new RE-600 ($399) in-ear monitor, which I enjoyed very much. I'll definitely get a pair to listen and measure, and then send off to ljokerl to consider for review.
The real treat for me, however, was getting to hear the RE-400. I'd read a lot of posts saying it was good, and since the demise of the Etymotic ER6 I've been searching for a good motorcycle earphone. In-ear monitors for motorcycling need to virtually disappear into your ear because a well fitting helmet is tight and padding is close to your ears, and if your IEM sticks out and touches the padding wind noise vibrations from the helmet directly transfer though the body of the IEM and into your ears...and it can be quite loud. Also, when putting the helmet on and off, the neck collar is smaller than your head and strongly rubs against your ears in passing. With big IEMs that can hurt bretty badly and often dislodges the IEMs, requiring you to take the helmet off again to reseat them. The RE-400 looks small enough that it might work under a helmet, and coupled with its $99 price tag becomes a very attractive motorcycing in-ear monitor. I'm crossing my fingers.
Ed. Note: I've posted my show impressions for Stereophile, you can read them here.