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Livewires Trips review (with impressions of many other customs)

post #1 of 66
Thread Starter 

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No longer relevant at the moment, may edit later with current impressions. 


Edited by project86 - 1/11/12 at 8:32pm
post #2 of 66
Wow, what an elaborate and informational read. Great work! Now where is my wallet hiding?
post #3 of 66
Very interesting to read. I'm planing to buy my first customs within a near future and Livewire seems like a good place to start.

Would you say that the Livewire trips provide a good value compared to the original ones?
post #4 of 66
Comprehensive (horizontally-speaking, touching upon many, many customs) and even-handed! Well done, and thank you!
post #5 of 66
Gah the temptation. Thanks for an amazing review/roundup. Its refreshing to see someone who doesn't immediately extol the innumerable virtues of the JH13. I am incredibly tempted to pick up some Livewires. I don't suppose you could briefly compare the UM3X with the livewires and the ES3X?
post #6 of 66
VERY impressive review, makes me want to pick up some customs. Glad that Livewires finally came out with some triple drivers!
post #7 of 66
Nice, this is the best, most conclusive review I have seen on the topic.
post #8 of 66
Good read...I share some of your opinions regarding the quality of armatures/drivers being basically the same...very little difference between high-end IEMs from a quality standpoint in this regard. I went for the JH13Pro recently since I got $100 off and because I find that the speaker/headphone/IEM makes the single greatest difference in a system...and I will be selling off my portable headphone amp to make up for some of the cost.

You've also listened to some very good high-end speakers...I recommend many of those quite often...the Sierra is a wonderful speaker at its retail pricepoint, the Orions were quite amazing when first revealed and still are quite nice...but they're a bit impractical (tons of amps, not the greatest dynamics, and limited output). I highly recommend checking out Dr. Geddes' speakers. Also...I wish I could have heard some of the Green Mountain Audio speakers...they closed down before I was even aware of them.

Wow just realized how badly these IEMs roll off...at 11K they drop steeply.
post #9 of 66
Some observations:

Funny, more than once the OP put the JH13Pro advantage in the buyers' minds.
No, not defending JH. No, I don't have any JH products.

I had the Livewires duals before, and can't find many good things to say about the SQ.
OP's Livewires Trips' build quality seems on par with my duals - not that great IMO. If you look at pictures of (for example) UE's customs in the ears, they fit better to the shape of the outer ears. (EDIT: Just remember that those aren't OP's customs at all... haha)
No, I don't have any UE products either.
post #10 of 66
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Trisk3lion View Post
Would you say that the Livewire trips provide a good value compared to the original ones?
I'd say so. The bump in quality is very similar to moving from UE4pro to UE10pro, but the price increase is nowhere near as big.

Quote:
Originally Posted by A_Dying_Wren View Post
Gah the temptation. Thanks for an amazing review/roundup. Its refreshing to see someone who doesn't immediately extol the innumerable virtues of the JH13. I am incredibly tempted to pick up some Livewires. I don't suppose you could briefly compare the UM3X with the livewires and the ES3X?
No problem. UM3X is probably my favorite universal. It is very good, and I can see how someone might even prefer them over some of the lower customs. In my case, all universals make my ears uncomfortable after a while. So as much as I enjoyed the UM3X, it wouldn't be a good match for me. A well made custom completely overcomes that problem. You may not have the same issue though.

As for sound, the ES3X and Trips are both better than UM3X (again in my opinion). It's a similar sound signature, very natural and balanced, with the customs increasing every good trait by a small margin. If you like the UM3X, you'll love the others, but realize it is not a night and day difference. At this level we are really paying extra for that last 10% or so.

Quote:
Originally Posted by cujobob View Post
Good read...I share some of your opinions regarding the quality of armatures/drivers being basically the same...very little difference between high-end IEMs from a quality standpoint in this regard. I went for the JH13Pro recently since I got $100 off and because I find that the speaker/headphone/IEM makes the single greatest difference in a system...and I will be selling off my portable headphone amp to make up for some of the cost.

You've also listened to some very good high-end speakers...I recommend many of those quite often...the Sierra is a wonderful speaker at its retail pricepoint, the Orions were quite amazing when first revealed and still are quite nice...but they're a bit impractical (tons of amps, not the greatest dynamics, and limited output). I highly recommend checking out Dr. Geddes' speakers. Also...I wish I could have heard some of the Green Mountain Audio speakers...they closed down before I was even aware of them.
I've never found the Orion++ system to be lacking in dynamics or output. I do agree that they are not the most practical though.... they are very picky with placement, and then there's the matter of finding a pair to demo.

I was not aware of Green Mountain Audio's demise, and I can't find any official word about it. Their website does state that each speaker is only being made through September though, so maybe you are on to something. Any links about this? It is (or was?) a great company to deal with, and I stil recommend them often.

Quote:
Originally Posted by parrot5 View Post
Some observations:

Funny, more than once the OP put the JH13Pro advantage in the buyers' minds.
No, not defending JH. No, I don't have any JH products.

I had the Livewires duals before, and can't find many good things to say about the SQ.
OP's Livewires Trips' build quality seems on par with my duals - not that great IMO. If you look at pictures of (for example) UE's customs in the ears, they fit better to the shape of the outer ears. (EDIT: Just remember that those aren't OP's customs at all... haha)
No, I don't have any UE products either.
I'm not sure what you mean by the "JH13pro advantage". I did enjoy them very much, but I think I made my stance pretty clear: I don't quite understand the design philosophy behind them with regards to the 60hz spike, and I couldn't justify the price given how well the other contenders performed. Don't get me wrong;I think JH is a wonderful company, and they can rightfully price their stuff at whatever levels they see fit (and in fact they seem very successfull judging by how many owners there are on this forum).

Most people around here have had great experiences with the original Livewires. You obviously didn't, which is fine. But I take issue with the idea that they aren't well made. Holding them in my hand next to several UE customs, I noticed no differences (aside from the slight yellowing of an older UE model). Each person's outer ear area is different, so I'm not sure what you mean. The Trips (much like the ES3X) do seem to be a bit more shallow or low profile if that's what you mean. They don't stick out as far as some others, but that has nothing to do with the quality of the fit. Mine fit like a perfectly.
post #11 of 66
Whoops, I made a mistake and confused Green Mountain Audio with another company, I'll have to demo their offerings sometime.

Back to the topic at hand...Is the black on the outside of the IEM bad looking in person?
post #12 of 66
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by cujobob View Post

Back to the topic at hand...Is the black on the outside of the IEM bad looking in person?
Not at all. It's just a matte black slightly textured finish. The outer "rim" area is smooth and I believe is covered with a clear coat that holds it together with the rest of the shell, so you can't really feel a seam where the 2 parts connect. It's not flashy but it looks well made. Sorry for my pics, those were the best out of a dozen or so I tried. I need a better camera.
post #13 of 66
Very informative writeup sir. Really enjoy reading through all the custom IEMs

I will be ordering my custom very soon, UM Mage.
post #14 of 66
Nice review - thanks for the nice comparison. I have many of these IEM and concur with many of your opinions, but I don't have the Livewires Triples yet to comment on myself. I think 6 custom IEM is enough for me right now.
post #15 of 66
Thanks for your impressive review. Must have spend days for it I suppose

While JHAudio is overshadowing others lately, it was a very interesting read of your unbiased opinions on other customs IEMs.
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