As the title states, I am not an audiophile, what I am going to be writing about is purely based on my impressions due to my visit in Jaben within an hour, my time was so limited and a lot of my impressions my not even be accurate. But after trying different iems, I could understand why a lot of people say that audio is all about personal preference, there was no good or bad, it is just whether you like it or not. I had my sm3 and ipod video with me to do some comparisons. I first jumped to the universal demo of JH13, my first impression was brighter, it was definitely brighter than my sm3, highs were more present and a lot of details are presented. That's what I felt about the 13 for the moment. Then I turned to JH16, I heard people describing JH16 as having more base than the 13, however I didn't find this to be true. They had about the same amount of bass out of ipod + rs hawk in my very short listening time, JH16 does sound very similar to the 13, and bass had a slightly different feel, but I wouldn't say that it is more in terms of quantity. Then next I tried JH11 and JH5, I find JH5 to have the least amount of bass out of the four, but this could be because that I couldn't get a very good fit with the JH5. JH11, in my opinion, was the one that has the most distinct sound signature. once again my descriptions here may not be true for a lot of people, but I also find that during my listening sessions, I do not agree with a lot of the things said on head fi about these iems. Then I tried some universal iems including the IE8 and UE Triple fi 10, I found IE8's sound signature to be the one I like the least. IE8 has the most bass quantity and sounds smooth with a slightly more muddy feel and less details. Also another thing I noticed is that JH13/16 sounds a lot better out of rs hawk compared to listening it straight out of an ipod, sound opens up and sound stage becomes more 3d, I have to say it sounds better by quite a bit.
Sorry about the messiness, I just wanted to share my opinions on some of the iems, after my limited listening time, I come to the conclusion that audio is all about personal preference and what sound signature you would like to have in your music. For now, I think SM3 is treating me very well.