From the originator of in-ear monitor systems comes the latest in its progression of universal fit earphones. I’ve used them all. I liked the EM3s a lot. I loved the Atrio M5s. And now I’m equally fond, if not more so, of the Spectrum Series G10s.
Future Sonics Spectrum Series G10 Future Sonics employs a single custom – designed, full-bandwidth driver in its earphones, deliberately eschewing armature, “hearing aid”-style drivers (so there’s no crossover or concerns about phase). The G10s have a sleek, modern appearance, twisted pair cabling and an integral thumb groove that makes figuring out which is right and left instinctive. They come with a range of foam and soft silicon end pieces, or “sleeves,” so the user can choose whether he wants the ultimate isolation of the foamies or the comfort of the silicone sleeves. As with the Atrios, I opted for the silicon sleeves for my use; they seal well and are comfortable for long periods of use.
Frequency response is rated as simply 18 Hz to 20 kHz; I’d like to see a plot of the frequency response, the G10s ($219) evidencing to my ear a gentle boost moving down from the mids. Knowing that Future Sonics voices its ear monitors with musicians in mind, I wouldn’t expect them to measure totally flat. I might not want to use the G10s for making critical balance decisions, but they sure sound sweet. That said, if you want to know what people mean when they say transducers sound “musical,” give the G10s a listen, but use a good DAC. With phone/iPad audio, the G10s sound good; with a reference-quality DAC (I used Benchmark and Emotiva units), the G10s really put a smile on my face.
I’ve turned a number of folks on to Future Sonics’ universal fit in-ear monitors, including gigging musicians who wanted superlative performance but couldn’t afford custom molded IEMs. I’m glad to be able to put Future Sonics back on that list with the introduction of the Spectrum Sound G10s.