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Westone 3 Impressions Thread - Page 59

post #871 of 2135
Let me qualify my comments a bit more to see if that helps. I am in my mid 40's have been exposed to audio at various levels a lot over the last 20 years and as such, my high frequency hearing is a bit rolled off (above 14k) Not a lot more then folks my age, but important to consider if your concerned about sibilance.

Its important to understand what sibilance really is relative to what were discussing/perceiving here, its much more complicated than this, just ask my wife who is a speech and language pathologist… but just to keep it simple here for folks to understand..

Simply:

Sibilance is the presence of strongly emphasized s, sh, ch, z, j sounds in speech.

Detailed:

These consonants are created by air moving through the vocal tract and being constricted by the position of the tongue and lips.

The spectrum of sibilants is that of narrow band noise in the high frequency range (5-10 kHz) and therefore their perception is the first to be affected by hearing loss with age (PRESBYCUSIS). Sibilants may be unvoiced (i.e. without pitch) or voiced (i.e. with an added vibration of the vocal cords).

With that in front of us, I do not perceive a lot of sibilance in the 3’s (as I did in my X10s and ER4’s for example) but younger folks may be more sensitive to it.

The one factor here IMO that makes me think this is a small group effected is that these IEMS are so flat that nothing stands out… so by definition of the term there is no strong emphasis in the 5-10k range…. Like the E530s or ER4s or the X10s have in the holes that I spoke of in earlier posts. The cross over from the low to mid to high frequency armatures is extremely well done (no simple feat by the way). They are just flat enough to be used for monitoring (something I know a good deal about). There is some coloring by the designer, but realitive to other IEMS were discussing they are flat.

I hope this helps for those on the fence, but the only real way to know if it effects you is to buy them and see…unfortunately nothing I or anyone else says is going to solidify what you hear, but I can tell you that sibilants can be “adjusted” if they exist by treble boost, cut and acoustical changes like different tips. Also IF it does exist from the artist or engineer that laid it down.. Nothing you do is going to make it disappear, you can only tame it to your taste.

Peace and Merry Christmas to all you Headfi-rs this is a hobby worth being passionate about. I sure am J

CMasten
post #872 of 2135
Quote:
Originally Posted by CMasten View Post
Let me qualify my comments a bit more to see if that helps. I am in my mid 40's have been exposed to audio at various levels a lot over the last 20 years and as such, my high frequency hearing is a bit rolled off (above 14k) Not a lot more then folks my age, but important to consider if your concerned about sibilance.

Its important to understand what sibilance really is relative to what were discussing/perceiving here, its much more complicated than this, just ask my wife who is a speech and language pathologist… but just to keep it simple here for folks to understand..

Simply:

Sibilance is the presence of strongly emphasized s, sh, ch, z, j sounds in speech.

Detailed:

These consonants are created by air moving through the vocal tract and being constricted by the position of the tongue and lips.

The spectrum of sibilants is that of narrow band noise in the high frequency range (5-10 kHz) and therefore their perception is the first to be affected by hearing loss with age (PRESBYCUSIS). Sibilants may be unvoiced (i.e. without pitch) or voiced (i.e. with an added vibration of the vocal cords).

With that in front of us, I do not perceive a lot of sibilance in the 3’s (as I did in my X10s and ER4’s for example) but younger folks may be more sensitive to it.

The one factor here IMO that makes me think this is a small group effected is that these IEMS are so flat that nothing stands out… so by definition of the term there is no strong emphasis in the 5-10k range…. Like the E530s or ER4s or the X10s have in the holes that I spoke of in earlier posts. The cross over from the low to mid to high frequency armatures is extremely well done (no simple feat by the way). They are just flat enough to be used for monitoring (something I know a good deal about). There is some coloring by the designer, but realitive to other IEMS were discussing they are flat.

I hope this helps for those on the fence, but the only real way to know if it effects you is to buy them and see…unfortunately nothing I or anyone else says is going to solidify what you hear, but I can tell you that sibilants can be “adjusted” if they exist by treble boost, cut and acoustical changes like different tips. Also IF it does exist from the artist or engineer that laid it down.. Nothing you do is going to make it disappear, you can only tame it to your taste.

Peace and Merry Christmas to all you Headfi-rs this is a hobby worth being passionate about. I sure am J

CMasten
Thanks for the awesome, detailed explanation CMasten! If you don't mind this is going to ES's FAQ!
post #873 of 2135
Alright, I have a couple questions. They're kind of a selfish questions, but legitimate nonetheless.

For those of you who own, have owned, or tried the Westone UM2 and have found it to be sibilant, have you tried the Westone 3? How is the sibilance with the Westone 3 compared to the UM2?
post #874 of 2135
Someone should have started the sibilance thread. This is starting to go in circles. Buy them, try them, keep or return them. Way too complicated.

And yes, CMasten, great review/comparison. If you have seen the SE530 v. W3 thread, the OP claims the W3s sounded like a cheap ear bud to him, compared the SE530. He's somewhat tempered his appraisal, but still says that the SE530s are far superior. Not that there's anything wrong with that, but your post certainly offers a compelling counterpoint.
post #875 of 2135
I would love to just try them. But honestly, I don't want to have to put up with or pay for the shipping charges and restocking fees if I don't like them. Someone recommended that I try them out at a local store. Which local stores would carry a product like the Westone 3? If there is a local store that has it, I'll gladly drive over to it (I'm in Milwaukee).
post #876 of 2135
Quote:
Originally Posted by moseboy View Post
Alright, I have a couple questions. They're kind of a selfish questions, but legitimate nonetheless.

For those of you who own, have owned, or tried the Westone UM2 and have found it to be sibilant, have you tried the Westone 3? How is the sibilance with the Westone 3 compared to the UM2?
Moseboy,

Your questions are not selfish at all. It's a legitimate concern given your past experience.

Having said that, it will be quite hard to get a conclusive answer for your problem because I have owned SE530 and UM2s since their release dates and I honestly prefer the sound of the UM2 and I can't hear any sibilance. Like CMasten I'm on the wrong side of forties, however, our younger customers usually like 5PROs and Triple.Fis more than our older customers, and don't seem to care so much about warmth and balanced sound as older customers do. I can't stand too analytical sounding earphones either.

The Westone 3 addresses all detail, crispness, clarity (or whatever else one wants to call it) slight advantage that the SE530 had over the UM2. The UM2, in exchange for a more balanced, warmer, fun sound outputs a slightly muddier sound than the SE530. For me, I always preferred the trade off in favor of the UM2.

In other (hopefully simpler) words: the Westone 3 has achieved the best of both worlds. That is how they sound to my ears. Extreme clarity, sound separation without losing the warmth, balanced output of the UM2 but if anything, the Westone 3 has conquered and surpassed what probably SE530 lovers liked about them. What can I say? It's time for an SE630.

As it stands I see a clear pull ahead for the Westone 3.

As for the sibilance -- I never noticed it with my UM2s but I never used the triple-flange either because I cannot stand its sound. With the ComplyTips, the UM2 never showed me sibilance. It's most likely a combination of each individual's "hearing signature" and the wrong eartip. Nothing other than Complys or Shure Olives will do for me and that's what I have been struggling now with the IE8. I'm trying to write a review about them but the eartips that will fit them are not helping me. Not even the T400 because the shape of the earpiece prevents a good seal on my right ear canal.
post #877 of 2135
I actually bought the 5pro from you before I tried the UM2. I sold it mostly because I had severe fit issues. I could never keep a good seal for very long which was very distracting. From what I remember, even it was slightly sibilant, but the mids were just lacking.

As far as the Westone 3 though, I really will never know if I'll like them unless I try them. I just unfortunately have a bad feeling.
post #878 of 2135
Quote:
Originally Posted by Flavio T View Post
... however, our younger customers are always after 5PROs and Triple.Fis and couldn't care less about warmth and balanced sound. I can't stand analytical sounding earphones either.
Heh I do enjoy some warmth in equipment...granted, when you say analytical headphones - do you mean actually very accurate headphones, or U-shaped frequency response that over-accentuates everything and produces fake perception of extra detail? Because some warmth is definitely pleasant, but if you heard a frequency response that results in flat perceived response, its at another level.
post #879 of 2135
MaloS,

What I don't like, I'd call harsh, Krell-like, too sharp, over analytical, lifeless, lacking bottom, small soundstage, narrow headstage, etc

I can't say I like this or that type of frequency curve because it will depend on the amp, speaker, recording, and worst of all, the song. For me it just doesn't make sense to discuss freq response curve, specially with in-ear earphones, because however the freq curve was measured, it can never be replicated. It's a guesstimate in the best case scenario. Ear canals shapes and sizes are active elements in determining one's true freq response curve for a given in-ear earphones. Very different than full-size headphones which you can use the Neumann head to measure all of them and maintain a standard. Once ear canal's shape and size, quality of seal, eartip shape, size and material enter the equation, you can pretty much toss your freq curve graph in the garbage can.
post #880 of 2135
While you are probably right you will not be disappointed with the tf10's
post #881 of 2135
I really hate to be a bitch about this and wouldn't ask if I hadn't searched so hard to find an answer first with no luck. Can someone please measure the cable length between the phones of the Westone 3 and the Y-split? This is kind of important to me.
post #882 of 2135
11" or 28cm with the slider all the way down (don't forget to subtract a bit of length cause of the over ear-ness).
post #883 of 2135
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hooran View Post
11" or 28cm with the slider all the way down (don't forget to subtract a bit of length cause of the over ear-ness).
Oh wow, that is short.... That's from the stem of the phones to the last usable part of the cable before the Y-split?

...I guess it's doable, but still.... It'll take some adjusting coming from the SE530 and wearing them in front....
post #884 of 2135
Quote:
Originally Posted by moseboy View Post
Oh wow, that is short.... That's from the stem of the phones to the last usable part of the cable before the Y-split?

...I guess it's doable, but still.... It'll take some adjusting coming from the SE530 and wearing them in front....
The length isn't bad at all. I have a rather large head and it fits me fine
post #885 of 2135
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hooran View Post
The length isn't bad at all. I have a rather large head and it fits me fine
Lol.... I'm just so used to my SE530 not even coming close to my chin. I just shortened the cable on it to see if I could stand the Westone 3's length if I got it and it would barely work....
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