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post #3361 of 5326

I keep reading the W4 threads and realized this many people can't possibly be wrong.  This IEM has been out 18 months and people are still raving about it.  Level headed audiophiles with very discriminating tastes are still raving about it.  I though, what the hell was I missing??

 

Well, I have just become a convert and W4 has just unseated W3 as my favorite Westone and universal for that matter. 

 

I originally purchased the W4 a year ago April just after they came out and about 2 months BEFORE I got my Ibasso T3 amp.  For whatever reason, I did not like them...at least unamped.  I sent them back after only a couple days.  Not sure if giving them more time would have mattered but an amp definitely help. The perfect analogy is when driving a mid-sized sedan (Camry, Accord, etc).  The 4 cylinder is fine but the 6 takes it to another level. 
 
Well, now I see what I was missing.  Paired up with the T3 with the Ipod Classic on "treble booster" EQ setting and large P-series comply tips with top cut off flush to where stem starts (so it looks like an Ety foam tip) and I'm pretty floored.  It's jaw-dropping.  Bass is plentiful, detail retrieval is fabulous, depth and expansiveness of the presentation is like a great headphone.  Doesn't sound muffled or veiled much at all.  Not how I remember hearing it 1st time around.  Just buttery smooth and totally non-fatiguing as so many seem to say.  I quickly stuck the W3's in my ears and while not bad at all, perhaps the first thing I noticed was that the treble DOES sound a bit artificial compared to W4....and of course, that mid-bass hump is more apparent.

 

Great IEM!!


Edited by Spyro - 10/18/12 at 5:38pm
post #3362 of 5326
Quote:
Originally Posted by Spyro View Post

I keep reading the W4 threads and realized this many people can't possibly be wrong.  This IEM has been out 18 months and people are still raving about it.  Level headed audiophiles with very discriminating tastes are still raving about it.  I though, what the hell was I missing??

 

Well, I have just become a convert and W4 has just unseated W3 as my favorite Westone and universal for that matter. 

 

I originally purchased the W4 a year ago April just after they came out and about 2 months BEFORE I got my Ibasso T3 amp.  For whatever reason, I did not like them...at least unamped.  I sent them back after only a couple days.  Not sure if giving them more time would have mattered but an amp definitely help. The perfect analogy is when driving a mid-sized sedan (Camry, Accord, etc).  The 4 cylinder is fine but the 6 takes it to another level. 
 
Well, now I see what I was missing.  Paired up with the T3 with the Ipod Classic on "treble booster" EQ setting and large P-series comply tips with top cut off flush to where stem starts (so it looks like an Ety foam tip) and I'm pretty floored.  It's jaw-dropping.  Bass is plentiful, detail retrieval is fabulous, depth and expansiveness of the presentation is like a great headphone.  Doesn't sound muffled or veiled much at all.  Not how I remember hearing it 1st time around.  Just buttery smooth and totally non-fatiguing as so many seem to say.  I quickly stuck the W3's in my ears and while not bad at all, perhaps the first thing I noticed was that the treble DOES sound a bit artificial compared to W4....and of course, that mid-bass hump is more apparent.

 

Great IEM!!

 

As soon as I saw in my subscriptions your name on the W4 thread, I thought, "I wonder if Spyro has given the W4 another try and realized that they are a better iem than he thought at first." And then I read your post! I was always surprised at how little you liked them. I wonder if your first pair was a dud. The W4 does like a little juice; and it also really likes the whole bore to be opened. Why Westone sells those grey silicones is beyond me. Comfortable? For sure. But the designers of the W4 should know that their earphone sounds best unobstructed and those grey tips narrow the bore too much. At lest, that's my opinion. 

 

I'm currently on the hunt for a pair again. 

post #3363 of 5326
Quote:
Originally Posted by imackler View Post

 

As soon as I saw in my subscriptions your name on the W4 thread, I thought, "I wonder if Spyro has given the W4 another try and realized that they are a better iem than he thought at first." And then I read your post! I was always surprised at how little you liked them. I wonder if your first pair was a dud. The W4 does like a little juice; and it also really likes the whole bore to be opened. Why Westone sells those grey silicones is beyond me. Comfortable? For sure. But the designers of the W4 should know that their earphone sounds best unobstructed and those grey tips narrow the bore too much. At lest, that's my opinion. 

 

I'm currently on the hunt for a pair again. 

ok, so which tips that you recommend us for best listening experience while in train or commuting to work ?

post #3364 of 5326
Quote:
Originally Posted by JohnSantana View Post

ok, so which tips that you recommend us for best listening experience while in train or commuting to work ?

 

My favorite with the W4 is a to take the uncomfortable clear tip that comes with the W4, cut that stalk off, then cut the stalk in half, slide one half over each of the bores and put on a sony hybrid that fits. So comfy, great isolation and doesn't close the bore! 

post #3365 of 5326
Quote:
Originally Posted by imackler View Post

 

My favorite with the W4 is a to take the uncomfortable clear tip that comes with the W4, cut that stalk off, then cut the stalk in half, slide one half over each of the bores and put on a sony hybrid that fits. So comfy, great isolation and doesn't close the bore! 

+1000. I keep wondering why more W4 owners don't use the Hybrids. Probably some of the best tips for them, period. I do think that a solid tube sounds better, so I would rather use a stem from a foam tip rather than the silicone stalks. When you squeeze in a small Shure olive underneath the Hybrids, though, isolation goes through the roof good. Not Ety good, but I find that to be rather undesirable at times.

post #3366 of 5326
what's so special about these hybrids? they just look like plain old silicon tips in the pics
post #3367 of 5326

The opening on the tips are larger than the ones on stock tips. Makes a noticeable difference in sound. 

post #3368 of 5326
Gotcha.
post #3369 of 5326
Originally Posted by Doc-holliday View Post
Your opinion of the TF10 and SE535 vs the W4 in that regard is exactly how i hear them.
Like I was saying earlier more drivers don't necessarily mean better if not well implemented. I think another example is the W3 to my ears is quite a large step down from the W4 and there is one less driver but they still do have 3 drivers in there.
I think you have a better technical understanding than I do, but it still makes sense to me that when proper design and engineering is applied a multi driver system should beat out a well designed single driver. Now you have me intrigued and I am going to have to try to gain some empirical knowledge by testing myself. What single driver iem would you say beats out the W4 in separation and overall sound? I'll find them and try em.

    The W3 is a horrible IEM for the price IMO, and yes another good example of limitations even with multiple drivers.

 

I think the ER4B and S are better, completely different sound though, separation isnt leagues better though, just slightly. Other good 1 or 2 BA set-ups to try will be the Phonak PFEs, Rockit R50, GR01, B2 and Etymotic HF series. I think these are on par in separation and the TWFKs actually rival it in bandwidth. 

post #3370 of 5326
Quote:
Originally Posted by Spyro View Post

I keep reading the W4 threads and realized this many people can't possibly be wrong.  This IEM has been out 18 months and people are still raving about it.  Level headed audiophiles with very discriminating tastes are still raving about it.  I though, what the hell was I missing??

 

Well, I have just become a convert and W4 has just unseated W3 as my favorite Westone and universal for that matter. 

 

I originally purchased the W4 a year ago April just after they came out and about 2 months BEFORE I got my Ibasso T3 amp.  For whatever reason, I did not like them...at least unamped.  I sent them back after only a couple days.  Not sure if giving them more time would have mattered but an amp definitely help. The perfect analogy is when driving a mid-sized sedan (Camry, Accord, etc).  The 4 cylinder is fine but the 6 takes it to another level. 
 
Well, now I see what I was missing.  Paired up with the T3 with the Ipod Classic on "treble booster" EQ setting and large P-series comply tips with top cut off flush to where stem starts (so it looks like an Ety foam tip) and I'm pretty floored.  It's jaw-dropping.  Bass is plentiful, detail retrieval is fabulous, depth and expansiveness of the presentation is like a great headphone.  Doesn't sound muffled or veiled much at all.  Not how I remember hearing it 1st time around.  Just buttery smooth and totally non-fatiguing as so many seem to say.  I quickly stuck the W3's in my ears and while not bad at all, perhaps the first thing I noticed was that the treble DOES sound a bit artificial compared to W4....and of course, that mid-bass hump is more apparent.

 

Great IEM!!

 

HAH!  Got yah.  Fished in!

 

I'm getting a W4R next week, and plan to compare it with balanced cable to my original W4 single ended on the same SR-71b amp, and see what I find.  I spent some time with my SR-71b and the W4R with my TWag V2 Eclipse cable via SR-71b and Interceptor at RMAF last weekend and LOVED it.  Right now the W4 is the only IEM I carry around in my pocket when I head out the door - they lay flat in a small pouch, and fit nicely in my front pants pocket with my iPhone.

post #3371 of 5326
Quote:
Originally Posted by Inks View Post

    The W3 is a horrible IEM for the price IMO, and yes another good example of limitations even with multiple drivers.

 

I think the ER4B and S are better, completely different sound though, separation isnt leagues better though, just slightly. Other good 1 or 2 BA set-ups to try will be the Phonak PFEs, Rockit R50, GR01, B2 and Etymotic HF series. I think these are on par in separation and the TWFKs actually rival it in bandwidth. 

 

The W3 with the UM56 tips is actually a great IEM, and about as balanced as the UM3X but with a little better fuller lower mids. They also work pretty well with Complys tips if you can't afford custom tips like mine.  I've been using them for 3 years now, and still enjoy them at times when I want something fun to listen to.

post #3372 of 5326
IMO both the W3 and UM3X have too much midbass, not mentioning the treble issues I have with both.

Custom tips may help the treble issue I had with the W3 but the bloated bass will still be there.

W4 IMO, was the big step-up for Westone.
post #3373 of 5326
Quote:
Originally Posted by Inks View Post

IMO both the W3 and UM3X have too much midbass, not mentioning the treble issues I have with both.
Custom tips may help the treble issue I had with the W3 but the bloated bass will still be there.
W4 IMO, was the big step-up for Westone.

 

With grey silicone tips and a deep insertion the W3 can get boosted midbass, but the UM3X does not.  With UM56 tips the W3 does not have too much midbass for me, nor does the UM3X, and the two sound closer to each other if I use the UM56 tips.  For me, the custom silicone tips and vinyl tips alike improve the W3 bass and treble.  Tips are important, as is ear positioning - they improve the W3 bass and the treble alike, at least for me, but do not harm the bass and treble in the UM3X.  The W3 treble is better with Complys than the Westone silicone tips, but I prefer the UM3X treble with the silicone tips over the Complys.  The bass of the W3 with Complys is a bit stronger than the UM3X bass, but I didn't find it to bleed over into the mids.

post #3374 of 5326
Quote:
Originally Posted by TwinQY View Post

+1000. I keep wondering why more W4 owners don't use the Hybrids. Probably some of the best tips for them, period. I do think that a solid tube sounds better, so I would rather use a stem from a foam tip rather than the silicone stalks. When you squeeze in a small Shure olive underneath the Hybrids, though, isolation goes through the roof good. Not Ety good, but I find that to be rather undesirable at times.


Because it does not fit without using special means ;). 

post #3375 of 5326
Quote:
Originally Posted by HeadphoneAddict View Post

 

With grey silicone tips and a deep insertion the W3 can get boosted midbass, but the UM3X does not.  With UM56 tips the W3 does not have too much midbass for me, nor does the UM3X, and the two sound closer to each other if I use the UM56 tips.  For me, the custom silicone tips and vinyl tips alike improve the W3 bass and treble.  Tips are important, as is ear positioning - they improve the W3 bass and the treble alike, at least for me, but do not harm the bass and treble in the UM3X.  The W3 treble is better with Complys than the Westone silicone tips, but I prefer the UM3X treble with the silicone tips over the Complys.  The bass of the W3 with Complys is a bit stronger than the UM3X bass, but I didn't find it to bleed over into the mids.

 

I've been thinking I might like the W3 far more with the Sony Hybrid modded tips than I did with the grey tips, thus bringing a little bit more openeness to the sound and less midbass. I remember just loving the W3 soundstage and excellent female vocals. That being said, I think the W4 is the more technically advanced earphone. 

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