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My mixed Westone 3 impressions, comparisons, and experiments - Page 4

post #46 of 56
There are many people who have had the same complaints, and then upon discovering the best ear canal position for their ears have said, "Wow, now I know what it was supposed to sound like". Not only do the tips affect the sound a lot, but how deep and what angle you have them into your ears has as much or more of an effect.

I can use the medium grey silicone, and push the tips in just deep enough to grab the wall of the ear canal and seal where outside noise goes away, and the bass will not be boomy, mids are full and highs are sparkly. If I push them in a few extra mm deeper than they need to be then the bass becomes boomy and highs roll off and mids fall back. So, a short tip too deep is a problem.

But if I use a triple flange tip the tip bore length is too long, and the highs sound plasticky unless I shove the tip much deeper into my ear till it is uncomfortable - if I trim about 3 mm off the stalk of the triple flange, and use a shallower insertion the sound is right again, and comfort is improved.

And finally, if I use custom molder Westone UM-56 tips, I get the same ear position everytime, and comfort/isolation is high, with a good balance of bass/mids and treble.

So, we know the W3 is capable of putting out excellent sound, it just doesn't seem to work as well for everyone universally. Most people can make it work after not only trying all the tips (or ones they didn't come with like Shure black olives or yellow foamies) but also by altering the depth and position of those tips. Each tip will have a particular ear position that works best with one person's ears, and that position might no the best for the next person, even though it is the same tip.
post #47 of 56

My apologies for bringing back a very old thread, but I found this thread after much googl'ing and just had to add my $0.02.

 

I'm having the same experience with my Westone 3's as Lunatique, and I couldn't find anyone else that apparently has the same taste as Lunatique and I (accurate, neutral sound reproduction). Compared to my trusty Sony MPD-V6's, the mid-to-lows are muddied. Listening to Mozart's Requiem with them is a disappointment.

 

I wonder if the Shure 535 might be more my style?

 

Thx!

--

dgg
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lunatique View Post

[...]

1) The Westone 3 is not neutral or accurate. The high's are significantly rolled off--to the point of sounding like a veil is placed in front of the tweeters. The bass is hyped, to the point of sounding muddy. I was not happy about this because with all the research I've done, the Westone 3's are supposed to be one of the more neutral/accurate sounding IEM's on the market currently. As things stand, I cannot use them without customized EQ settings, and this is enough for me to exchange them for something else (I don't know if the online retailer even allow it).

[...]


 

post #48 of 56
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by goggin View Post

My apologies for bringing back a very old thread, but I found this thread after much googl'ing and just had to add my $0.02.

 

I'm having the same experience with my Westone 3's as Lunatique, and I couldn't find anyone else that apparently has the same taste as Lunatique and I (accurate, neutral sound reproduction). Compared to my trusty Sony MPD-V6's, the mid-to-lows are muddied. Listening to Mozart's Requiem with them is a disappointment.

 

I wonder if the Shure 535 might be more my style?

 

Thx!

--

dgg
 



 


I have since posted a thread that compares the Westone 4, Shure SE535, and the Westone 3. Search for it in my profile. :)

 

post #49 of 56

Anyone that thinks the W3 has rolled off veiled highs has a seal problem or a hearing problem, period.

post #50 of 56
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Spyro View Post

Anyone that thinks the W3 has rolled off veiled highs has a seal problem or a hearing problem, period.


If you are referring to the low highssuch as that 7,000 Hz harshness, then yes, you would be right--the W3 is too shrill in that range. But if you're talking about the higher frequency range know as "air," then the W3 is definitely rolled off in the 13,000 Hz range.

 

post #51 of 56

Just for fun, I went back and started reading some very early W3 threads, and when they were first reviewed or actually commented on via impressions, there were some comments about the highs being veiled. (this was read a couple of days ago) I had to go back and look at the reading to see if I were reading about another earphone. Now owning (in the past) the 530's The 530's had rolled off highs. I'm glad you brought this thread back, and I do believe the 535's may be more to your liking.

However, regarding my friend Lunatique, it is misinformation, or lack of experience with the W3's (regarding the use and trial and error with tips) to state the highs are rolled of, or even the highs being Shrill. Yeah of course with the flex tips, and various recordings, they can be shrill. As for as rolled off Highs, and Muddy Bass, I can only think that maybe the long big Comply's are being used incorrectly, with the Tips prohibiting the highs to get through, thus making the bass Muddy

As far as details. the W3's are much more detailed, in general than the 535's period. I've AB'd them extensively with many different tips on each. regarding Classical Music, I think the 535's absolutely sing. The mids are unmatched. In my humble opinion, with at least 2 weeks of experimentation, and ear burn in, the W3's will be all over the 535's. As stated by several W3 lovers, you must take the time to experiment with tips to fully enjoy these. I use Olives, but found the Comply Ts Sphericals the absolute best for these W3 beauties. They have a larger opening, to allow the perfect blend of highs mids and Bass. And yes well balanced

post #52 of 56

Thank you, Lunatique....I've read the threads you so graciously pointed me to and learned a lot. I really appreciate the EQ frequency response curves you've published...that's what I really needed to see to understand what's going on.

 

I'm thinking it all over and trying to decide if I want to spend approx $500 and whether to spend it on the Shure 535 or the Westone 4.

 

But in the meantime all the talk of reference grade headphones made me remember a pair of Etymotic ER-6 I had tucked away years ago and -- oh my goodness!!! -- does Mozart's Requiem sound divine through these or what!

 

So fortunately, I'm not in a hurry and can enjoy the Etymotic's while I ponder the whole thing smily_headphones1.gif

 

Thanks again!

post #53 of 56

Freefallr4545 - you got my curiosity aroused about the tips and after a couple hours of fiddling I learned it was the long Comply P series foam tips that was muddying the sound. I finally settled on the olives and the clarity I need was there. How 'bout that --- you learn something new everyday!

 

But, while 100 times better, the W3's are still not really where I want to be. So I'll probably go to the W4 or Shure 535, but I need to think about that as $500 is enough to make me pause.

 

The good news is, like I said above, all this reminded me I had a pair of Etymotic ER-6's from years ago tucked away and I'm listening to them right now and just absolutely loving the clarity. etysmile.gif

 

Thanks again!

post #54 of 56
Quote:
Originally Posted by goggin View Post

Freefallr4545 - you got my curiosity aroused about the tips and after a couple hours of fiddling I learned it was the long Comply P series foam tips that was muddying the sound. I finally settled on the olives and the clarity I need was there. How 'bout that --- you learn something new everyday!

 

But, while 100 times better, the W3's are still not really where I want to be. So I'll probably go to the W4 or Shure 535, but I need to think about that as $500 is enough to make me pause.

 

The good news is, like I said above, all this reminded me I had a pair of Etymotic ER-6's from years ago tucked away and I'm listening to them right now and just absolutely loving the clarity. etysmile.gif

 

Thanks again!


Excellent. I have not heard the W4's as of yet, there is a real good thread that compares them both, back and forth. It may help I really think you will be happy with either. Also If I may suggest, keep your eyes out in the for sale forum. many people sell there nearly new phones at a fraction of the cost. 

 

post #55 of 56

Indeed. As I've posted elsewhere, I couldn't be happier with my W3's. I used them when I flew to Orlando about a week ago and they were great. Since I've had the custom ear pieces made the sound has only improved. I know they aren't for everyone, but I figure if you're going to spend that much for some quality IEM's, spend the extra $150 and get some customs made. 

post #56 of 56
Thread Starter 

BTW, I also have a detailed review that compared the W4, SE535, and W3:

http://www.head-fi.org/forum/thread/553427/my-westone-4-impressions

 

 

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