Anyway, my friend, I really don't have that big of an issue with your 10/10 rating for sound. It's an opinion like almost everything else around here. Being that this is a forum (and especially THIS fantastic compendium of a thread ! ) that folks come to in order to gain an understanding of things... I wanted those reading this thread to know that there is a a group of us who feel very differently. It's an odd IEM indeed that would provoke such diametrically opposed views, observations, opinions.
I'll chalk it up to QC issues and just go with the thought that I had very different SM3's than you.
I recommend hearing them before one buys.
The SM3 is actually on my next earphones to check out list. I am actually really surprised about the conflicting view about these earphones, especially since I am also convinced that joker and I probably have very similar taste/hearing (haven't read a review from him that I found myself disagreeing in any level). While this intrigues me by a mile, I am also worried that these might not be the next thing I should be looking forward to... and the UM3X comparison doesn't help either, since I blanched on those. Hmm... decisions, decisions, decisions.
I'm actually with you on hearing things similarly to Joker. His SM3 review was mostly inline w/ my listening. I think the point of controversy is in the weighting and scoring of them. He qualified some of the drawbacks of the SM3 and did his usual bang up job IMO.