More Info on IPX Connection System

UE Ultimate Cable SystemThe industry needed a sweat-proof and tour-proof cable system for in-ear monitors, so we co-developed a solution from the ground up with a company that specializes in medical-grade cables. The Ultimate Ears IPX Connection System was designed to handle everything a musician deals with nightly — sweat, makeup, hairspray, humidity, set up, break down and travel.

These issues have always been a problem for manufacturers of in-ear monitor systems. But, the industry has dealt with them and has considered them to be the norm, which creates nightly challenges for engineers. They constantly need to stock extra cables and perform nightly cleaning rituals. If a cable fails or becomes intermittent, the in-ear monitor itself becomes unstable and unusable.

The cable has historically been a weak link in the signal chain. Think about the environment that an in-ear lives in for hours at a time – its job is to give a sound signal to a performer on stage, in wardrobe, under spotlights, in all types of weather, all over the world. The opportunity for points of failure are high. We’ve put our resources into finding real and tangible solutions to each of these unique problems with the Ultimate Ears IPX Connection System.

Q: What is the Ultimate Ears IPX Connection System?
A: The Ultimate Ears IPX Connection System is our new cable and connector system built to withstand the rigors of music touring, and minimize the need for service and maintenance. UE has partnered with Estron a/s, a medical and hearing aid manufacturer, to build the best sounding, strongest and most reliable cable system possible. We chose to work with Estron a/s because of their engineering and quality assurance processes.

Q: Is the UE IPX system similar to Estron’s T2 system?
A: The design is built upon Estron’s already good T2 system, but added new features to make it more reliable and reduce intermittence. The design update also made it IPX 67 compliant.

Q: Is the cable waterproof and sweat-proof?
A: Yes. The cable itself is waterproof and sweat-proof due to special plasma coating and the connection system — where the cable plugs into the in-ear monitor via the connector— is rated IP67.

Q: Will all Ultimate Ears in-Ear Monitors now ship with the new IPX system?
A: Yes. All new Ultimate Ears monitors will be built with the Ultimate Ears IPX Connection System.

Q: Does this mean that I can now easily switch between my stage cable and a bluetooth cable?
A: Yes. The Ultimate Ears IPX Connection System was built with flexibility in mind. You can easily switch between stage and bluetooth cables, depending on your need and situation.

Q: What is the proper way to disconnect the cable?
A: The best way is to grab the connector itself and disconnect from the earphone, you may also wrap the cable with 1 loop around a finger and pull.  Please do not grab the wire and pull without have a “loop” or anchor boing, this will generate a lot of force and may damage the individual conductors.

Q: What about the Ultimate Ears SuperBax cable specs?
A: The Ultimate Ears SuperBax is unparalleled in its quality and construction. It is a low impedance hi-fi audio cable that:

  • Silver plated copper litz wires
  • Quad twisted – 168 strands
  • Weight: 8-9g / 0.28-0.32oz
  • Impedance: 0.75 Ω
  • Pull strength of cable: 12lbs
  • Microphonics: Low

Q: Can I plug my old cables into new monitors?
A: No. The Ultimate Ears IPX Connection System is compatible with new cables sold by Ultimate Ears – the Ultimate Ears SuperBax Cable and the IPX Ultimate Ears Bluetooth Cable. It is not backwards compatible. Ultimate Ears is offering a cable/connection upgrade offer, if a customer requests. The upgrade cost is $300 and includes one cable plus the new connection system.

Q: Can I use my existing Linum cables?
A: Yes, you may, but you will not get the water and sweat proof benefit by using older Linux Bax and SuperBax cables.  We have made design changes to the cables with Estron.

Q: What about using Deoxit? I know that’s a standard practice with MMCX.
A: The connection system is self cleaning.  There is no need to use Deoxit with this cable connection system, and while the Ultimate Ears IPX Connection System looks somewhat similar to the MMCX standards, these are very different systems.  We strongly urge against using any kind of tool, including Q-tips to clean the socket.

Q: Are other brands using this type of cable? How does yours compare?
A: Ultimate Ears does not specifically comment on competitor offerings. At this time, Ultimate Ears is the only manufacturer of custom IEMs that is using this new and improved cabling system.