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Livewires or Westone UM2?

post #1 of 39
Thread Starter 
What should I get? Livewires or Westone UM2's? I am just talking about in terms of SQ. I listen to Rock, Alt, and Hip-hop. I am selling my Grado SR-225 and SuperMicro IV so these will be my ONLY headphones and will not have an amp.

I am 16 years old so will the Livewires still fit in my ears as I grow older?

Thanks!
post #2 of 39
Have had both. Would choose Livewires any day. UM2s had recessed highs. However, Livewires are very revealing of source and can be perceived to be dry/analytical, whereas UM2s were definitely musical.

I realise your age may provide budget limitations but I'd hold onto the SuperMicro IV and go Livewires - you'll then hear all the SuperMicro is giving you.

If you can't afford that, and these two are your only options, you'll find the UM2s (with appropriate tips) to be a very effective, fun, musical phone. Me, I'm more at the detail end of the detail/fun spectrum (http://www.head-fi.org/forums/f4/sou...al-fun-273599/).

As to ear growth check with your audiologist but I'd suggest you are probably more likely to have growth changes in your ears over the next few years than older folks like me (43! ). I read on the forums that I may outgrow them in as little as 3 years but my audiologist assured me that it was more likely to be 10-15 years unless I was having teenage-like growth spurts
post #3 of 39
I asked my audiologist a similar question and, whilst I don't remember the exact age, your ears should remain fairly constant after the age of about 18-20.

I haven't heard either IEM, so I can't offer any advice regarding SQ. However, I would consider getting the UM2's, purely because their resale value will be higher than the livewires (which are effectively zero due to their custom fit), which may be another factor you overlooked originally.

You can always get custom tips made for the UM2's if you are experiencing problems with the standard tips. I have custom tips for my Shure E500's and they are the closest thing to custom IEMs available, whilst retaining the value of the IEMs themselves.
post #4 of 39
considering your age, it's better if you wait 2-3 years for livewires and/or other customs, go to westone um2!
post #5 of 39
Quote:
Originally Posted by shadesbass View Post
...I would consider getting the UM2's, purely because their resale value will be higher than the livewires (which are effectively zero due to their custom fit), which may be another factor you overlooked originally.

You can always get custom tips made for the UM2's if you are experiencing problems with the standard tips. I have custom tips for my Shure E500's and they are the closest thing to custom IEMs available, whilst retaining the value of the IEMs themselves.
shadesbass has good points about resale value and custom tips. My understanding is both phones use the same drivers, Livewires have theirs tweaked to suit their approach and sound signature.

In your case I'd look for FS Forum UM2s (had some a couple of months ago I could have loaned you - sorry, 2 late now ) and then read the various tips threads - I settled on Shure tri-flanges modified to bi-flanges but nowadays would try the Black Olives to see if their increased comfort still delivered the unimpeded SQ of the biflanges. Then, if still desired, go for the expense of custom tips.

That's an added bonus with generics - exploration!
post #6 of 39
From reviews ive heard that the Livewires might not have enuff bass for u? The UM2's if heard have strong bass but recessed highs?
post #7 of 39
Quote:
Originally Posted by RugerRell View Post
The UM2's if heard have strong bass but recessed highs?
Agreed.

Quote:
Originally Posted by RugerRell View Post
From reviews ive heard that the Livewires might not have enuff bass for u?
They'll give you what you give them (i.e. they are more neutral). RSA amps reveal plenty of bass. Mini3 different but good strong bass. Meier Headsix less bass.

If using unamped you can always EQ in more bass.
post #8 of 39
for your information, if you ever outgrow your livewires, i think to redip your livewires ( update the shell) costs 30 $ per ear. thought it might help
post #9 of 39
Thread Starter 
Oh thanks for the helpful information. I'm still stuck on which to decide. I guess I'll keep my SuperMicro IV, but sell the Grado's. Wouldn't the SuperMicro IV supply some of the bass the Livewires are missing? Wouldn't the UM2 be TOO bassy?

Keep the answers rollingg!!!
post #10 of 39
after burnin, I don't find livewire's bottom end lacking at all.

Personally, I find it spot on in relation to the mids and the highs. Its not overpowering, nor is it muddy.

I've not listened to the um2's so I can't make the comparison.

But bang for the buck? I find it extremely difficult to beat the Livewires when it comes to performance for a given about amount of money spent.
post #11 of 39
I've had UM2s on a Hornet and Move....there's alot of bass there. It's not overpowering though, but it definitly is on the bass heavy side.

Great for hip-hop, reggae, and electronic (trance, techno, club).
post #12 of 39
Thread Starter 
Bumpity bump!

Would anyone else like to give some input?
post #13 of 39
if it were my money (hey i did put my money where my mouth is) i'd go for the custom Livewires - its the best IEM i've heard rivaling fullsize cans plus i can wear it for hours at a stretch with minimal discomfort. i've had my Livewires for 3weeks now and no regrets whatsover. infact i've been selling off some of my gear for lack of use since the appearance of the Livewires.
post #14 of 39
^ Totally agree on the comfort thing. I can listen to them all day, even when I nap!
post #15 of 39
Thread Starter 
Sounds good but the only draw back is me getting ear impressions.. how do those go? How much do they cost?
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