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Best rock IEM....SE530 or W3?

post #1 of 56
Thread Starter 
Looking for a rock IEM. Mostly instrumental, and hard rock. Comfort is a factor here (not the most important one, but to be considered). This is why Im not considering the triple fis., As Im probably going to be wearing them with a winter hat. Its not really between the 2 IEMs I mentioned in the title, its just that from what I know, those seem like the best suited for the job.

For instance, Ive heard good and bad things about the klipsch X10.

Help please!
post #2 of 56
well I own both the IEM's you mention. and for rock I think I would still recommend the SE530 over the W3. the W3 are definitely a superior IEM overall, but dont handle rock as well as the SE530 IMO. the SE530 has a slightly forward midrange that means that guitars sound a bit more in your face. and vocals are silky smooth on them. the W3 on the other hand has even better bass impact, better definition on all frequencies and a larger soundstage. they will both do a good job, but the SE530 have the edge in rock . all other genres the W3 is a hands down winner and while I do listen to a little rock there isnt enough in my library to really ever use the SE530 anymore. I havent used them in well over a week because the W3 sound fine with rock, just not quite as good as SE530.
post #3 of 56
That's interesting. I had heard so many great things about the W3 and was about to get them, but since 90% of the stuff I listen to is rock, maybe that's not the best idea after all.

When you say rock, does that include metal?
post #4 of 56
well it depends on how well produced the metal/rock is. mthe problem is that the W3 isnt very forgiving. if the recording is crap or over compressed (not MP3 compressed but studio compression) or badly mastered you will hear every bit of that. where as the SE530 are a bit more forgiving and a touch smoother. they can make a bad recording or overly compressed track sound good. this is also one of the SE530 bad points. if the rock/metal is well produced like hmmm tool, slipknot 0or anything that has a nice edge to it. it will sound fantastic. the W3 are very accurate and a little touchy. they really wont do bad music any favours. so if you listen to punk or bootleg metal and stuff like that then you will hate them or begin to hate your music.
post #5 of 56
I have W3's and recently sold Se530's (also have UM2's and just prefer the Westone cable for all exercise related uses, which is what I use these for 80% of the time). The Se530 was very good, probably a bit better than the UM2 as far as detail, but the W3 is better in all ways.

I listen to a ton of rock (not much metal, but a lot of loud, challenging stuff- Sonic Youth, APTBS, etc). The W3 sound freakin brilliant with loud guitar driven music. I have no idea at all what some people are talking about. Obviously you have to be sure you have a good seal. I'm using modded biflanges these days, but Olives work well for me too.
post #6 of 56
Have not heard the W3 but the Shures are incredible with guitar based power metal or any other genres. Plus the midrange is great.
post #7 of 56
Quote:
Originally Posted by qusp View Post
well it depends on how well produced the metal/rock is. mthe problem is that the W3 isnt very forgiving. if the recording is crap or over compressed (not MP3 compressed but studio compression) or badly mastered you will hear every bit of that. where as the SE530 are a bit more forgiving and a touch smoother. they can make a bad recording or overly compressed track sound good. this is also one of the SE530 bad points. if the rock/metal is well produced like hmmm tool, slipknot 0or anything that has a nice edge to it. it will sound fantastic. the W3 are very accurate and a little touchy. they really wont do bad music any favours. so if you listen to punk or bootleg metal and stuff like that then you will hate them or begin to hate your music.
Well, I've never listened to my music through anything but entry level IEMs, so I don't know what in my collection would be high level of production and what wouldn't.

I don't listen to almost any indie, though, so it sounds like there's probably going to be good production value. Probably more than half of the music I listen to at any one time is Red Hot Chili Peppers, Nirvana, Pearl Jam, System of a Down, or Alice in Chains. I listen to those five bands significantly more than any other, do you think those will sound good?

Again, I've never heard any high quality headphones, IEM or otherwise. I've been using CX-500s for a while now, and that's the best I've heard. Will the difference be noticeable to someone like me who doesn't have trained ears?
post #8 of 56
I will let you know what I think of the SE530 on December 25. For rock I listen to anything from Joy Division/Smiths (jangly guitar), to Jesus & Mary Chain (feedback guitar), to Rage Against The Machine (in-your-face guitar), to Queens Of The Stone Age (turn-the-volume-up guitar).
post #9 of 56
How could anyone think that the SE530 make a good rock can when its presentation is closer to the HD650 than any other high end IEM? I think Westone 3 is the clear winner here, there must be at least 5 IEMs which can do rock better than the SE530. Because dark, smooth, slow and boring isn't my idea of a good rock can. At the very least it's clear that the Westone 3 is easily one of the best metal IEMs, thanks to its incredible, Edition 9 like speed.
post #10 of 56
Quote:
Originally Posted by scytheavatar View Post
How could anyone think that the SE530 make a good rock can when its presentation is closer to the HD650 than any other high end IEM? I think Westone 3 is the clear winner here, there must be at least 5 IEMs which can do rock better than the SE530. Because dark, smooth, slow and boring isn't my idea of a good rock can. The Westone 3 is easily one of the best metal IEMs, thanks to its incredible, Edition 9 like speed.
I never listened to the Edition 9 but my experience with the Westone 3 is nothing less than extraordinary and it plays all music styles better than my SE530.

For some deep Cello music I found the UM2 a bit better than the W3 at certain passages but the detail and sound separation of the W3 I have never heard before except for my ES2, although I think the W3 is less flat in a good way and provides for a more fun sound than the ES2. ES2 is very accurate.
post #11 of 56
Quote:
Originally Posted by scytheavatar View Post
How could anyone think that the SE530 make a good rock can when its presentation is closer to the HD650 than any other high end IEM? I think Westone 3 is the clear winner here, there must be at least 5 IEMs which can do rock better than the SE530. Because dark, smooth, slow and boring isn't my idea of a good rock can. At the very least it's clear that the Westone 3 is easily one of the best metal IEMs, thanks to its incredible, Edition 9 like speed.
Dark, smooth, slow and boring isn't my idea of a good rock can either. Fortunately, the SE530 isn't that. I can't say whether the W3 is the clear winner or not since I haven't heard them yet, but the Shures are quite good with rock.
post #12 of 56
I use SE530's with mostly rock/metal/some rap, I would categorize the sound signature of these cans as anything but dark smooth and slow. I moved from E5's to SE530's and I was also quite impressed that they were able to keep up with my E5's in terms of bass extension and definition, overall bass presence was less, but considering the E5's that was expected.
post #13 of 56
I never heard the SE530 before, the last Shure I got is E4c, W3 beat it in every kind of music I listen to (sorry no country).
post #14 of 56
Thread Starter 
Though, could ears experienced with both IEMs tell us the specific differences when listening to rock with each of the aforementioned IEMs please?:P
post #15 of 56
Quote:
Originally Posted by qusp View Post
well I own both the IEM's you mention. and for rock I think I would still recommend the SE530 over the W3. the W3 are definitely a superior IEM overall, but dont handle rock as well as the SE530 IMO. the SE530 has a slightly forward midrange that means that guitars sound a bit more in your face. and vocals are silky smooth on them. the W3 on the other hand has even better bass impact, better definition on all frequencies and a larger soundstage. they will both do a good job, but the SE530 have the edge in rock . all other genres the W3 is a hands down winner and while I do listen to a little rock there isnt enough in my library to really ever use the SE530 anymore. I havent used them in well over a week because the W3 sound fine with rock, just not quite as good as SE530.
This is a great post! I agree 100% I listen to a variety of music and W3 really excels but if it were just rocking out, not sure you can beat SE530.
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