In-Ear Monitors (IEMs) have recently become popular among audiophiles for their pristine audio quality. Let's see what makes them different from other listening devices.
What is an in-ear monitor?
Chances are that you now have some kind of audio listening device on your ears. It can be a pair of wireless earbuds, such as Airpods, or a hefty, wired pair of headphones. In-ear monitors are a completely different kind of audio device. They are primarily intended for professional use. When it comes to fit, they sit somewhere between the tight seal of headphones and the low profile of earplugs.
They are called monitors because they were initially created for musicians and performers to & # 39; monitor a combination of audio & # 39; sources in different places. For example, a band member would hear a mix of different instruments and vocals that would come directly into his or her IEM. They were also used by singers to listen to an instrumental backing track while recording vocals. Artists and media personnel usually have IEMs specially adapted to the shape of their ears.
Today IEMs are available to everyone. Stores offer a wide variety of prices, designs and sound profiles for every type of listener. You can probably find them at your local audio store or music store.
While IEMs costing tens of thousands of dollars still exist, you can get a great sounding pair that costs no more than a regular pair of earplugs. There are also many audiophile communities dedicated to comparing, optimizing and discussing in-ear monitors.