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EarSonics SM3 Appreciation, Discussion, & Review Thread - Technically Best Universal? (see first... - Page 5  

post #61 of 2831
For custom tips, I'd recommend looking for brands doing acrylic earmolds (instead of sillicone) since it is what Earsonics does and that means you'll get the sound Frank Lopez had in mind.

I've heard that sillicone tips can reduce treble response a little - in a way that could be great if the SM3 were bright, but it does not seem so.

I personally use long complies on my SM2 because they give the best dynamic and the liveliest sound to me, but they do muffle the highs a lot (the normal, shorter complies less so, but I only have one of those - either the guy who created us with two ears was a mess or I should be called a mess for having lost the other one), so I have to use the Cowon's EQ to a certain extent. Also, the highs get a little drier than normal with foam tips in my opinion.

At this price point, frankly, it seems to me that it starts getting completely worthwhile to spend an extra 90 euros into custom molds.

By the way, SM3 + earmolds would be 440 euros with tax or 370 without - and according to some who tested both (French forums), they still outperform the EM2-ifi of the same brand, which cost 570 with tax or 480 without. So if you don't plan to upgrade later on to the EM2-pro or EM3-pro, the SM3 + earmolds seem very good value for money.
post #62 of 2831
@MayaTlab, yes I am planing to get the custom molds from Earsonics
post #63 of 2831
So Joe, when are you going with the custom molds?
post #64 of 2831
Thread Starter 
Not sure yet...going to wait for those other tips first and see how they are. I am thinking they may be very good, not that I have any complaints about my current tips.

And I have been comparing the e-Q7 with the SM3, but still have not had enough time to get an answer to all the questions I have been asked about how the two compare. I am hoping to be done comparing tonight.
post #65 of 2831
Thread Starter 
Quote:
I'm interested in these two IEMs and I have a few questions to ask. if you plan to do a review soon, don't bother answering them (even though they're quite specific) .

1 - Which one has, to you, the best instrument separation ?

2 - Which one handles reverb / echo / decay effects the most convincingly / realistically ?

3 - Which one is the fastest, especially in the lower mids / upper bass regions ? For example, and even though I rarely listen to it, which one would handle best heavy metal music and their machine gun bass line ?

4 - Which one has the most detailed bass in terms of :
a) listening to different notes and melodic lines ?
b) texture (which one has the most rumbling bass) ?

5 - Which one has the wettest / crystalline trebles ?

6 - Am I right if I say that the SM3 midrange is warmer and more liquid and that the E-Q7 one is brighter and slightly grainy ?

7 - Which one is the most dynamic (what I mean is difference between loudest and quietest sounds within a track, especially for classical) ?

Thanks a lot !
First, the e-Q7 is IMO the 2nd best IEM I have. The e-Q7 has a very natural presentation and the transparency is excellent. While the e-Q7 is excellent, it isn't the most exciting IEM I own. The FX700 is more exciting for example. The bass isn't the most reverberant, and the Copper, FX700, and even the GR8 have more reverberant bass. But the e-Q7 bass is controlled, accurate, and detailed. Imaging of the e-Q7 is also great, but not quite on par with the CK10 IMO.

Enter the SM3...to me the transparency is about the same as the e-Q7, but it offers bass that is IMO more accurate than the FX700 with better imaging than the CK10 due to the larger overall soundstage size.

The e-Q7 and SM3 have different sound signatures…the SM3 is warmer and fuller with better treble extension. Liquid is also a term I would use to describe the SM3, but not the e-Q7.

The majority of the listening has been done one of the following configurations:: HUD-MX1 -> Rx, Modded 5.5g -> Arrow, Modded 5.5g -> Rx, or for a limited time with my iPhone.

1. SM3 due to the larger space.

2. SM3 - the bass reverb of the e-Q7 is very nice, but the SM3 is amazing. It has power the e-Q7 does not. But it is more than that, as the overall large space of the SM3 makes echo/reverb/decay sound so realistic.

3. SM3 is faster across the spectrum than the e-Q7 while listening to fast trance (Infected Mushroom) and and metal (Sevendust).

4. a. SM3 has better detail due to the better 3D space, which makes the instruments sound more life like.
b. While the e-Q7 does have nice bass, the SM3 is in another league, able to slam out bass like a dynamic with great reverb and power. The lower level reverb of the two is similar for some notes, but as the beats get faster, the SM3 keeps it’s composure better.

5. SM3. I am very impressed by the clarity, accuracy, and liquid presentation of the treble of the SM3. It is never harsh, yet ultra detailed. Never overbearing, yet not recessed or lost.

6. Yes, you are right.

7. SM3 has the best dynamics of and IEM I have!
post #66 of 2831
Thanks for the comparsion @average_joe!

To be honest, imaging and instrument separation is adequate/fairly good on e-Q7. I consider SM3 instrument separation and imaging to be on par with, if not better than CK10.

SM3 midrange is definiely smoother and warmer compared to e-Q7. However, I really like female vocals with e-Q7
post #67 of 2831
Thread Starter 
I just spent a few hours over the past few days comparing. How different the two are really depends on the song. Maybe 1/4 of my songs, the two are close in performance, but with 3/4 the SM3 pulls away. And it also depends on the source, as the SM3 to me has more potential, meaning that while the e-Q7 will expand its soundstage as the music does, the SM3 does so even more.

But I do agree that the e-Q7 has good instrument separation and imaging. Just not as good as the SM3, that also adds better treble and bass with similar transparency, which is the e-Q7's strong point to me.

As far as the vocals of the e-Q7, yes they are nice, but Sarah McLachlan and Sarah Brightman sound just as good if not better to my ears with the SM3. But the e-Q7 is more forgiving, so some not the best mastered/recorded vocals can sound just as good/better with the e-Q7 as the imperfections aren't brought out like on the SM3.

I don't expect everyone to agree, and I did try different tips, but keep going back to the triple flange tips for comfort and sound.
post #68 of 2831
Quote:
Originally Posted by average_joe View Post
First, the e-Q7 is IMO the 2nd best IEM I have. The e-Q7 has a very natural presentation and the transparency is excellent. While the e-Q7 is excellent, it isn't the most exciting IEM I own. The FX700 is more exciting for example. The bass isn't the most reverberant, and the Copper, FX700, and even the GR8 have more reverberant bass. But the e-Q7 bass is controlled, accurate, and detailed. Imaging of the e-Q7 is also great, but not quite on par with the CK10 IMO.

Enter the SM3...to me the transparency is about the same as the e-Q7, but it offers bass that is IMO more accurate than the FX700 with better imaging than the CK10 due to the larger overall soundstage size.

The e-Q7 and SM3 have different sound signatures…the SM3 is warmer and fuller with better treble extension. Liquid is also a term I would use to describe the SM3, but not the e-Q7.

The majority of the listening has been done one of the following configurations:: HUD-MX1 -> Rx, Modded 5.5g -> Arrow, Modded 5.5g -> Rx, or for a limited time with my iPhone.

1. SM3 due to the larger space.

2. SM3 - the bass reverb of the e-Q7 is very nice, but the SM3 is amazing. It has power the e-Q7 does not. But it is more than that, as the overall large space of the SM3 makes echo/reverb/decay sound so realistic.

3. SM3 is faster across the spectrum than the e-Q7 while listening to fast trance (Infected Mushroom) and and metal (Sevendust).

4. a. SM3 has better detail due to the better 3D space, which makes the instruments sound more life like.
b. While the e-Q7 does have nice bass, the SM3 is in another league, able to slam out bass like a dynamic with great reverb and power. The lower level reverb of the two is similar for some notes, but as the beats get faster, the SM3 keeps it’s composure better.

5. SM3. I am very impressed by the clarity, accuracy, and liquid presentation of the treble of the SM3. It is never harsh, yet ultra detailed. Never overbearing, yet not recessed or lost.

6. Yes, you are right.

7. SM3 has the best dynamics of and IEM I have!
Thanks for that superb comparison.
post #69 of 2831
@ average_joe

Your comments dont surprise me, IMO EarSonics make the best IEM's.(period)
I just sold my JH13pro's, no reason to keep them, since I got the EM3pro's I never listened to them.... Your description is very nice, I agree a lot with the liquid quality that set them apart from any other, they caress your ears with ultra high definition and harmonics.

You mention you have the arrow and rx, how would you describe the differences? If interesting I might give the arrow a shot, but I must say that the Rx pairs incredibly well with EarSonics.
post #70 of 2831
Quote:
Originally Posted by GuyDebord View Post
@ average_joe

Your comments dont surprise me, IMO EarSonics make the best IEM's.(period)
I just sold my JH13pro's, no reason to keep them, since I got the EM3pro's I never listened to them....
That is quite a statement not to be taken lightly. Time to learn more about Earsonic I guess.
post #71 of 2831
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by GuyDebord View Post
@ average_joe

Your comments dont surprise me, IMO EarSonics make the best IEM's.(period)
I just sold my JH13pro's, no reason to keep them, since I got the EM3pro's I never listened to them.... Your description is very nice, I agree a lot with the liquid quality that set them apart from any other, they caress your ears with ultra high definition and harmonics.

You mention you have the arrow and rx, how would you describe the differences? If interesting I might give the arrow a shot, but I must say that the Rx pairs incredibly well with EarSonics.
I completely understand your statement above. I have to find time to get out the packaging for my IEMs, pack them up, and list them. I have been A/Bing them all, and while many do sound very very good, they only excel in one category whereas the SM3 excels in pretty much all!

As far as the Arrow vs. Rx, I honestly have not had much comparison time and I just got my Rx last week. I may like the Arrow better from my iPod than the Rx as I think it has more synergy, but when I eventually pit them head-to-head I will really know. I do know the Arrow form factor is far far superior for portable use, and I am happy using the Rx on my desk with my HUD-MX1.
post #72 of 2831


you just gave my CK10s erectile disfunction. good job Joe

haha, kidding aside, if these are how you describe them (basically, ck10 with more bass), then they are the ultimate iem i was talking about. also, the site lists them as 345 euros, which is like 400+ bucks. what the eff. Joker, get it on it with your review
post #73 of 2831
$435.40 USD The bank charged me some kind of conversion fee.
post #74 of 2831
Thread Starter 
@ germanturkey: hope it was just you CK10!

@ Woody: And worth every penny!
post #75 of 2831
@ average_joe

I noticed that you are selling almost all your iem's! due to the EarSonics
That is what I call being convinced! Im glad Im not alone in this planet....
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