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Westone ES2 (the underappreciated custom) - Page 2

post #16 of 200

ES2/ES3/E500

Guys, it is not nice to tempt people like this. I have UM2s with modified bi-flanges and AE-1 amp. I love the sound of UM2s .. However after reading this thread and other for E500. i have been bitten by upgraditis.

I would like to upgrade only if there is a wow factor.. E500 are good ( based on reviews only). So do these Es2.. How do Es3 compare..

I just want to buy a good IEM and not visit this forum for 2 years.. All these E series choices are killing me..
post #17 of 200
Thread Starter 
animalsrush - If you like the UM2's a lot and find them very engaging and musical you may find the E500's a bit boring. They are very detailed and well balanced but they really lack the bass impact, forward vocals, and fun factor that the Um2's have. These qualities are all taken to another level with the ES2 and as stated above they have better extension on both ends as well as better detail. The ES3 is more for vocal monitoring with an extremely forward midrange... might be a bit much from what I've read.

Pete7 - Post pics and impressions when you get them... we'll get Westone a solid spot on the Headfi map!

digihead - the cotton dock is very very nice
post #18 of 200
Hi Wakeride74 .. Thanks for the review and pics

You said, "They [E500] are very detailed and well balanced but they really lack the bass impact, forward vocals, and fun factor that the Um2's have."

Is the E500 too detailed in a bad way (i.e. analytical)? And what exactly do you mean by fun factor of UM2? I never owned a grado before to relate . Is the E500/ES2 aggressive? I like smooth full warm sound with no harsh highs cause it fatigues my ears.

I listen to lite/soft Rock, Live shows, Smooth Jazz, Acoustics, New Age, and some Blues. Do you know if ES2 is a better match for these genres?

Thanks, as always
post #19 of 200
I'll jump in to add my praise of the ES2's. I've had UM2's for 6 months or so, but I just cant get them to stay in my ears. I've tried all the options, including th UM56 custom mold. Now, my audiologist said I had the narrowest ear canals she had ever seen, so my experience might well be unique.

However, the ES2's are fitting just great after 2 weeks of use. I've found the right side can cut out when I lay on my back, something I do when lifting weights, so I may go back for a re-fit, but it's not a huge deal.

Fit aside, the sound compared to the UM2's (when properly sealed) is similar, but several levels improved. Detail, extension, soundstage, ease of listening, all these things are noticeably better.

I think my headphone search is over. Now, about that Hornet...
post #20 of 200
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by lolos
Hi Wakeride74 .. Thanks for the review and pics

You said, "They [E500] are very detailed and well balanced but they really lack the bass impact, forward vocals, and fun factor that the Um2's have."

Is the E500 too detailed in a bad way (i.e. analytical)? And what exactly do you mean by fun factor of UM2? I never owned a grado before to relate . Is the E500/ES2 aggressive? I like smooth full warm sound with no harsh highs cause it fatigues my ears.

I listen to lite/soft Rock, Live shows, Smooth Jazz, Acoustics, New Age, and some Blues. Do you know if ES2 is a better match for these genres?

Thanks, as always
As much as I'd love to recommend the ES2 I think your tastes may prefer the UE10, E4C or maybe the E500. The E500 is not overly analytical and if I'd never heard the UM2 I might have been very happy with them. All the instruments are balanced, none outshine the other. This includes the vocals which was my main complaint, the vocalist sounded too distant IMO. The detail was nice but the "fun factor" they were missing is color. Vocals pushed forward (more speaker-like) warmth and clarity as well as strong bass. The bass on the E500 has good extension but seemed to lack in quantity and during busy pieces seemed to be drowned out by everything else which made me feel like the foundation was somewhat lost. If you are interested in their sound I'd say order some UM2's first from earphonesolutions or something where you can return... see how you like them and if you want to go custom after that and really like the UM2 you can return them and order the ES2.

On a side note the E4C did very well with Jazz and classical you may want to consider those too.
post #21 of 200
.... i thought my post didnt go through


but... no... there is a page 2... well 2nd post is better anywaqys
post #22 of 200
How do these compare to Etymotics?

I really like the sound of the Ety ER-4S... the highs are slightly harsh at time.. bass good use an extra kick.... but the detail is great

main complaint is bad comfort and isolation, thats why I want customs.... but don't want too drastically of a different sound signature

Also how do the ES1s and 3s compare? I don't think I'll go for the 3s unless they are a major imporvement.... and really want the 1s unless it is a big difference.

Also, every tried ES2s with a Total Bithead?
post #23 of 200
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Chef Medeski
How do these compare to Etymotics?

I really like the sound of the Ety ER-4S... the highs are slightly harsh at time.. bass good use an extra kick.... but the detail is great

main complaint is bad comfort and isolation, thats why I want customs.... but don't want too drastically of a different sound signature

Also how do the ES1s and 3s compare? I don't think I'll go for the 3s unless they are a major imporvement.... and really want the 1s unless it is a big difference.

Also, every tried ES2s with a Total Bithead?
I can't really say as I have never owned Ety and it's been a long time since I've heard a Total so I don't know what to tell you. I don't find these as sensitive as catscratch does but all ears are different. Your best bet would be to demo some UM2's and that would give you an idea of how the ES2 sound... only lots better
post #24 of 200
Well it seems, the one my equipment isn't good enough for these headphones, they aren't the best portable headphones, which is the main use for my IEMs..... and while they should be exactly what I need in a sound signature.... $600 is too much too pay for something that most likely will yell at me for my crappy amp or source....

so... ES1 or Customs for my Etys.....
post #25 of 200
First, thanks for answering my questions

In a second thought, will equalizing make the E500 bring out the vocals like th ES2 and keep the good characterisics of the E500 that you said would fit my taste?

I like intimate close to my face vocals. Interestingly, everything you describe about the ES2 I love (except the sometimes sharp highs) yet you recommend E500 for my music genre

Quote:
Originally Posted by wakeride74
...I don't find these as sensitive as catscratch does but all ears are different...
What is the pitfall of being too sensitive with portable DAPs? And what it is the importance of an amp to correct this?!

I will be using imod as my source >> cryo mini-mini >> Supermini IV amp.
post #26 of 200
Thread Starter 
I'd recommend against any EQ especially the iPod's but if you must I doubt the vocals will even come close to the ES2... might be able to get them close to the E4C but they sounded pretty far back to me.

As far as the sensitivity I did not hear that to the degree catscratch did and what I do hear seems to be more related to a bad recording or use straight out of the iPod headphone jack which is when the highs (only on certain tracks mind you) can seem a bit sharp.
post #27 of 200
Quote:
Originally Posted by wakeride74
I'd recommend against any EQ especially the iPod's but if you must I doubt the vocals will even come close to the ES2... might be able to get them close to the E4C but they sounded pretty far back to me.

As far as the sensitivity I did not hear that to the degree catscratch did and what I do hear seems to be more related to a bad recording or use straight out of the iPod headphone jack which is when the highs (only on certain tracks mind you) can seem a bit sharp.
I agree...if you're looking for more upfront vocals in a custom IEM then the ES2 is the way to go. I think the UE10s tend to exhibit sharper highs when its a bad recording even more so than the ES2s. Also, I agree that the highs on the ES2 can sound a bit sharp straight out of the iPod headphone out when listening to a bad recording, or on certain tracks, etc. Using the line out with a Hornet, the highs to me are just what the audio doctor ordered...
post #28 of 200
Quote:
Originally Posted by digihead
I agree...if you're looking for more upfront vocals in a custom IEM then the ES2 is the way to go. I think the UE10s tend to exhibit sharper highs when its a bad recording even more so than the ES2s. Also, I agree that the highs on the ES2 can sound a bit sharp straight out of the iPod headphone out when listening to a bad recording, or on certain tracks, etc. Using the line out with a Hornet, the highs to me are just what the audio doctor ordered...
Digihead, Care to elaborate on your thoughts comparing the ES2/UE10 since you own both? I am considering one of these two in the not to distant future.
post #29 of 200

Now its Es2/E500

Wakerride74: Thanks for your prompt reply. I am leaning towards ES2. One last question.. Since they are custom molds how sturdy u think they are.. I am asking coz you can't return these once u buy them and something happens. That is the only reason why i was leaning towards universal IEMs..

The only shure sound i have hears are E3c and i didn't like that..

Thanks again
post #30 of 200
Thread Starter 
The ES2 feel stronger than any universal I've owned. The cable is a bit thicker than the UM2 and it can be detached from the monitor which is nice if it were to get really hooked on something. If you do have an accident that is bad enough to warrant repair just send them in to Westone. My experience with them has been great and turn around time has been impressive. Unless you are going to be wearing these while doing movie stunts or something I think breakage should be pretty far from your mind with respect to the decision.

sonic32 - I asked digihead the same thing and he told me that the UE10 is the clearer and more detailed of the two but it comes at a cost of warmth, bass impact and forward midrange/vocals which is where the ES2 really shines. If he doesn't respond here shoot him a PM he was a great help in my decision process.
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