Rewarding Myself With A Pair of Budget IEMs - EPZ Q5

So my main photography YouTube Channel has hit 75,000 subscribers in early January 2024, and almost at the same time my secondary vlog channel just surpassed 2,000 subscribers. I had hoped that both these milestones would be accomplished by end of 2023, so I can have a nice wrap up for the year, but no, they needed to be extended to one month later. Not that there was any conseqeunce, these were self-decided deadlines, and I missed them by just a hair's width. 75,000 subscribers is no small feat, never had I thought I would achieve this in several years, and now 100k subs count seems very attainable and not too far away. I treated myself with a pair of new in-ear monitor headphones. I went to Starspicker Audio with Andrew Chow, a fellow photographer and friend and we spent hours auditioning various IEMs from different brands. I finally settled with EPZ Q5, mainly because the sound profile was completely different from my usual preference (I have used the Sennheiser IE 800 regularly for years, so that is my reference). It is nowhere near as good as the IE 800 in terms of soundstage imaging, and detail retrieval but I do like that it sounds completely different from my usual listening experience, a bit more warmth and the vocals in the EPZ Q5 is a lot more forward. Nevertheless, it was not too much damage to the wallet, and a good little celebration of a small milestone. Gotta celebrate the small wins, right?

Andrew, a fellow audio-enthusiast, enjoying coffee and some eargasm

I don't even remember half of the IEMs I have tested on that day

Some of these are really good, and they are not cheap either. 

I also purchased a USB-C DAC/AMP for the IEMs. I lost my old one. Darn it!

The coffee at Starspicker Audio is not bad!

I settled for EPZ Q5.
A weird choice, my past self from 5 years ago won't approve this, but I am looking for more diverse sound profile in my collection of headphones these days. 

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