To answer your question about how the IE8 bests the Westone 3s........
It's VERY subjective because they're both so darn good. They have incredibly different sound signatures, but the advantage the IE8 has is simply this:
The W3, Triple Fis, SE530s, UE10, ER4P, UM2..........all have some sort of similarity, I cannot express it except that there is a lack of air, natural air that I experience with full size headphones................the timbre of the UE10 is about the best I've heard on any headphone and it even rivals my 2 pairs of R10s (bass light and bass heavy), but due to this lack of air, it does not possess nearly the amount of transparency where your brain recognizes the sound as real rather than electronic duplication. This is where the R10s best any headphone I've ever heard. Forgetting about whether you like a dark sound, bright sound, neutral sound.....there is no doubt that your brain will interpret the R10s as very natural and transparent even if the frequency response of the R10s is not what you look for in your listening tastes.....
This is where I come in and say that the IE8 has a naturalness (maybe its the dynamic drivers), but it possesses a naturalness that I have NEVER even come close to hearing on an IEM, or even a full size headphone for under 150 dollars. I find that the IE8 has a very similar sound to the AKG K701 but with a significant improvement in the bass response.....almost as if it handles the lows like HD600, and the mids and highs like a K701......this is really beautiful. It's not nearly as transparent as a full size first class headphone, no, but its truly on a different plain than any other IEM I've heard. I'd like to say that I don't think its solely the difference between dynamic and armature drivers because I also own the Sony X700 and I don't think that those possess a naturalness nearly as much as the IE8.
My listening preference with the IE8 is, if the recording is well mastered and recorded, I listen with bass response all the way down........
The IE8 shine with anything, but I have to give it kudos for it's ability to handle classical music better than any other IEM for sure. Classical music is often where IEMs fall apart. The passages are so detailed and the dynamics so varied and timbral qualities of 100 different instruments playing at once......most IEMs can't do this right. The UE10s handled it the best of all the IEMs I've tried, but the Westone 3s came close, very close.
But in most IEMs theres a very VERY closed feeling that really impacts a classical music listen....the soundstage can only be so big....even with full size headphones the sound stage can only be so big.........but the IE8 has an sound stage and imaging ability that somehow is significantly wider and more three dimensional.
If you take any above IEM that I've mentioned and compare it to the IE8 I would bet that you will agree it handles sound imaging a bit more naturally than any other IEM mentioned. Whether this is of drastic importance to you I don't know........the frequency response of the SE530, W3, Triple Fis are all very desirable to different people........probably preferable over the IE8 in some cases to some ears. There is no definitive choice......BUT whereas I feel it is safe to say some people will prefer the 530 for its laid back approach, some people will prefer the W3s for its luscious sound and sparkle, and some will love the Triple Fi's for its relative neutrality.........no one will prefer any of those three IEMs to the IE8 in terms of sound stage and imaging