post #31 of 37
2/25/09 at 12:37am
Just wanted to add my $0.02 to the thread, I own a pair of Westone 3, a REALLY OLD HeadRoom Total Bithead (no gain adjustment), a NuForce Icon Mobile and just received a brand new Ray Samuels Audio P-51 Mustang, and I absolutely suggest avoiding the Total Bithead if my experience applies to the latest Bitheads. When I first received my Westone 3 back in November, I could not even use them with my Total Bithead, because of the HUGE amount of background hiss. That was when I ordered the Icon Mobile, and was pleasantly surprised to find that not only is there extremely minimal background noise, especially on low gain (never really bothered testing high gain), but it's significantly smaller and lighter, and the volume dial doesn't make scratching noises when adjusted during playback (unlike my Total Bithead).
Now, my completely fresh, not broken in P-51 Mustang easily beats the Icon Mobile for tonality when combined with Westone 3, IMHO (No more sibilance issues!!!). There's no comparison...I can't wait 'til the thing is broken in! I have not had any chance to compare the two with other IEMs yet, and I plan to come back with results using IE8 sooner or later, between the two amps.
PS: My last pair of IEMs was UE Triple.fi 10 Pro and the pair before that was Etymotic ER-4S, which was what I used with the Total Bithead when I first bought it years ago. What I don't understand is how I didn't have issue with hiss with those IEMs on my Total Bithead, but it's utterly unlistenable with the Westone 3 such is the magnitude of the background hiss!