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Posts by joeshambro

  Honestly, I'd get a set of UE-4 Pro and ask to upgrade to the soft-fit option, if they can on that model (for even better isolation) and call it a day, save the extra cash.  I've only heard the JH-16 and the UE-18 of those you mentioned, and honestly, the UE-4 Pro stacks up really well for the price.  Very well, actually.  You miss some headroom and low-end response, but if you're just using them for personal listening, honestly, they sound fantastic and way above...
You're right, and perhaps I should change my wording.  They are flat, but have a lot of impact -- it's just not the prominent feature, as I would say the JH16 tends to be a little more leaning toward heavy (yet high-quality) bass.  There's certainly no bloating.
Thanks so much for the feedback -- as I haven't heard the ES5, I can't really compare.  My policy is to only review and compare products which I've had ample time to really dig into personally under a variety of situations.  I'll reach out to my contact at Westone and see if I can make that happen.
Guys:   Please see my review at About.com about this product, including some comparisons to other leading products:   http://homerecording.about.com/od/audiomonitorreviews/fr/Review-Ultimate-Ears-In-Ear-Reference-Monitors.htm  
Based on what you're looking for, I'd consider the JH16.  Lots of bass, good highly detailed highs and mids, and a wide soundstage.  A very fun monitor.   The Future Sonics sound signature is very pleasing for stage performers -- many of the top people in the business prefer it.  I haven't heard the customs, but the universal-fit Atrio are stellar earphones.  
      "Boring and lifeless" is in the ears of the beholder.    The idea UE had with these is to provide flat, studio reference-quality monitoring in any situation, in a portable package... for a really trained-ear audiophile they'll enjoy the neutral, flat sound signature.  If you're just listening for fun, I'd say it's just a matter of taste.  If you want a more "fun" sound signature, the JH16 and UE-18 are probably more up your alley.  If these ears will be used for...
You guys are going to love these.   Think UE-10 clarity and accuracy with a nice, tight low end that's not intrusive.  UE-10 with a little more balls.   They're not as aggressive as the UE-18 -- so flat, so nice.    I'll reserve a full review for the final production model, as like Jude, my set were pre-release and still subject to some tweaks.   Two other things you guys are going to absolutely love:  the cables are a welcome improvement in design,...
Marty:   Driver placement inside custom in-ears is a science.  They may not always be symmetrical or perfect.  Driver placement in the shell and positioning of tubes, filters, etc. is dependent on the individual's ear anatomy.  Positioning drivers and filters a certain way to give a precise, pre-determined frequency response at the ear canal is important and part of what makes good custom in-ears worth every penny.   This is a situation where function takes...
Hi Izzy,   First of all, forget the idea of ambient tubes.  Ambient tubes aren't really a solution to anything.  Your bass response of your earphones will suffer greatly if you do ambient tubes, because low end response of balanced armature-based IEMs relies on having a firm seal.   The other issue is hearing health.  You should be able to get a full mix through your IEMs if you're in any reasonable situation where you're getting a mix from a the monitor or...
Having heard the UE-4, I think you'd find it to have a lot more clarity than the SF-5 and Livewires, but the low-end is slightly more anemic.  It's there, and it's got punch and depth, don't get me wrong -- but the headroom on the low end is fairly restricted, compared to the UE-10/11/18 and JH-16.    I do think the above recommendation of the JH-5Pro would be the superior choice to the other customs you mentioned.
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