Pendulum's thick, live style of drum 'n' bass sold these earphones to us. The unthinkably low bass lines and rumblings found in this type of electronic music will cause dance fans to grin, and hold that grin until the song finishes.
We also found them to be notably capable with rock and metal, R 'n' B and rap; Muse and Metallica, Rihanna and T.I. Again, it's that cataclysmic bass and the in-your-face-like-a-hatchet-to-the-head power the IE 8s can deliver.
Using the bass screw mentioned earlier, this booming bass can be reduced slightly, although it's perhaps not as huge a reduction as some people might like.
Compared the the Shure SE530s, the IE 8s still deliver a huge wallop of low-end activity, but lack some of the crystalline clarity in the high end, suggesting to us that the Shures are more balanced, and more suitable if you favour sonic balance and an airier, more transparent treble, more than sub woofer-esque bass.
The much more affordable Denon AH-751s deliver a brighter treble, with more perceivable detail in the high-end, at the expense of the warmth and mid-range punch felt through the IE 8s. And in fact, the IE 8s are solid all-rounders for every genre we tried (and we try the lot!), as long as deep bass is important to you.
A blindingly impressive pair of earphones and more than worthy competitors to the Shure SE530s. As long as you like deep bass, these earphones will bring out dance, drum 'n' bass, rap, rock, metal and pop with admirable skill -- our favourite earphone to date for these genres.
Shure's SE530s will give you less bass but a sweeter, airier treble, perhaps making them preferable for country, folk and jazz, but this is too subjective for us to use when scoring the IE 8s. But they're certainly an alternative to consider if you want the abilities of the IE 8s, without the extended low-end presence, or if you find bass fatiguing after a few hours of listening.Edited by Cristina Psomadakis