Head-Fi.org › Forums › Equipment Forums › Portable Headphones, Earphones and In-Ear Monitors › SE535 vs JH5 (Had Westone 4's)
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

SE535 vs JH5 (Had Westone 4's)

post #1 of 24
Thread Starter 

 

Hey guys, so to cut it short I lost my Westone 4's at the airport and have finally given up looking for them in lost and found. I've looked through both SE535 and JH5 Impression threads (and the ones in between them), and narrowed it down to the two of these earphones. 

 

My question is after this entire paragraph, so feel free to skip it if you already know how a 4 sounds like.

 

Since I've already had the 4's for some time, I'll give my pros and cons take on them.

Pros: 

Bass detailing - This was a new level of sonic bliss for me, being able to hear every murmur, every detail of a song's bass notes were incredibly eye (or ear)-opening. I believe its one of the stronger traits of the W4 if you are not looking for slappy impactful bass.

Stellar instrument positioning - One of the good characteristics on the 4, with it I felt that the soundstage drastically improved compared with RE262's amped and even Audio Technica M50's, a closed on-ear headphone. Not only that, you can really feel the depth of all the instruments, feeling and savoring each part without sacrificing the big picture.

Superb Comfort - Despite it being a Universal I could wear it for hours. The only discomfort was that due to long hours my ear muscles sometimes feel sore holding them up. The braided wire was soft yet surprisingly durable. Perhaps a custom would be a solution to this, then again, its soft rubber vs hard plastic that you're jamming in your canals so I'm not really sure. Isolation was incredible as well (good enough for me)

 

Cons:

So-so mids - coming from a RE262 with lush and liquid mids, I did find the W4's a little dry and bloated when I first got them. Its not really a flaw, perhaps due to W4's flat nature. But I did find myself wanting more prominent mids since they were so refined already.

Slight Veil - As explained above

 


So, since this clears up some vagueness to my question (and taste to phones)

Which should I get? From what I've read, the JH5 is a livelier W4's, but I get it that they have a slight dip in the mid-range. It sounds perfect for me, in terms of bass and airy highs - but so far I've not seen anyone comment extensively on its mids. Honest opinion here, how do the mids sound? Also, they seem to have a smallish soundstage. Going back from W4 to RE262's, the 262's sounded really congested. Can someone give a more detailed explanation on the JH5 that would help me in my perspective?

 

I'll not be using any sort of amp as well - this will be for commutes, biking and studying/programming so I'd like to keep it simple, using only an iPhone 4/Cowon J3.

 

The other alternative is the SE535. If it has almost the same characteristics as the W4 and preserves its lucrative mid range - that might be what I've wanted for a long time too. Fit is probably not a problem since the W4's sat flush. Thick cable could be, but I'm all ears for your input.


Thanks and apologies in advance for the ridiculously long post for such a simple question.

 

Cheers!


Edited by riddlezildjian - 9/8/11 at 1:10am
post #2 of 24

Wow, what a comparison your asking. HE IEM's vs Customs are totally different. My question is, are you old enough to get customs? Otherwise get used used JH16 or something, and get them reshelled instead of paying full blown retail for these.

post #3 of 24

I will recommend these IEMs like EX1000 (expensive soundstage, great instrument separation, imaging, very detailed midrange n highs with deep punchy bass), UM3x (superb instrument separation, imaging, instrument placement, forward midrange), GR10 (clean, clear very detailed midrange, great instrument separation, imaging, clean highs and good bass response) and they close to above requirements in universal IEMs. The JH5Pro willbe even better choice for overall sound improvement but you may miss rich, detailed, forward midrange. The SE535 offers forward very detailed midrange but soundstage is average with good imaging n instrument separation.


Edited by ZARIM - 9/7/11 at 3:05pm
post #4 of 24

Have owned all three.  As Cliffroyroycole says above, JH5 by a longshot.  Totally agree.  If you also get an amp I consider it the best set up you could buy for $500.

 

($399 + $100 for Ibasso T3)


Edited by Spyro - 9/7/11 at 5:22pm
post #5 of 24
Thread Starter 

 

 

Quote:
My question is, are you old enough to get customs? Otherwise get used used JH16 or something, and get them reshelled instead of paying full blown retail for these.

 

I will turn 19 this coming October, so maybe this is something I should be worried about. (Though I don't see my ears growing that much). Do you mean something like this? 

http://www.head-fi.org/t/567756/fs-kozee-reshelled-jhaudio-jh16-pro-worldwide

 

I've found an audiologist near my place who will do impressions (not molds) for 30$, and sending it to UM or some other custom makers will set me about 700$ USD for a second-hand, custom to fit JH13's. Not too shabby. 

post #6 of 24
Thread Starter 

 

 

Quote:
The JH5Pro willbe even better choice for overall sound improvement but you may miss rich, detailed, forward midrange. The SE535 offers forward very detailed midrange but soundstage is average with good imaging n instrument separation.

 

Exactly what I was worried about. Even Mike from Headfonia says that:

Quote:
On the JH5, there is a slight dip in that area, which may or may not be noticeable depending on your music ... On the JH5, you’re hearing the peak part of the vocals, mainly around upper midrange to lower treble area, but they start to lose body on the lower midrange.

 

And yes, he did paint me a clearer picture to how the JH5's will sound - a little TF10 like to be exact. While I did try the TF10's for some time, I couldn't stand the mid recession, everything just sounded hollowed out. Are the mid dips on the JH5 almost the same? Or it is just a very slight dip that can be overlooked? With the TF10's, my head kept nagging to me that there was something missing.

 

To rephrase, since the mids on the W4 weren't that pronounced yet I could live with it, do the JH5's have less mids than the W4's? If its W4-like, with improved highs and lows I could live with its smaller soundstage - a decent trade off for clarity and no-veil.

 

This dilemma is slowly starting to consume me, not to mention how JH10X3 / JH13/ JH16 used and remolded could be an option as well.

Or I could just take advantage of earphone solutions 18% discount on the SE535s. 

 

The JH13 sounds perfect for me though, a refined JH5 with no mid dip. Too bad it costs 1/4th of a used car. 

 

 

 

 


Edited by riddlezildjian - 9/8/11 at 1:04am
post #7 of 24
Thread Starter 

 

 

Quote:

Have owned all three.  As Cliffroyroycole says above, JH5 by a longshot.  Totally agree.  If you also get an amp I consider it the best set up you could buy for $500.

 

($399 + $100 for Ibasso T3)

 

 

What if I go amp-less? I'll be driving it with an iPhone 4 only. I prefer the beauty of not needing a middle device, no matter how small it is...

It seems the JH13/16 do not go to their full potential without an amp.

post #8 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by riddlezildjian View Post

 

 

 

What if I go amp-less? I'll be driving it with an iPhone 4 only. I prefer the beauty of not needing a middle device, no matter how small it is...

It seems the JH13/16 do not go to their full potential without an amp.

IThe JH13Pro/16Pro are very refind in mids n highs with deep punchy bass(include stunning imaging, soundstage and instrument separation) and the difference is even more clear if compared with top tier universal IEMs like SE535, W4, EX1000. BTW these custom JH IEMs(include JH5Pro) sound amazing out of iPhone 4 without using AMPs.
 

 

post #9 of 24
Thread Starter 

Cheers guys, I think I will go ahead and decide on the JH5s.

 

And then 1964-Q pops out, mind-blowing lows, rich rich mids and comfortable no-strain highs... Dilemma smily_headphones1.gif

post #10 of 24

My take on the JH5 was that it's slightly warm sounding and when people go to an after market cable, it's to lean it out a hair. I don't find the mids down at all and pretty seemless. TF10s were not for me either but I really liked my jh5 audition. I don't think they share any tonality.

post #11 of 24

I owned the SE535 and sold them on, there's no real bass impact to speak of, just really subtle mid-bass unless you crank them to deafening levels, and if you have good full-range hearing the high-end rolloff is too pronounced, and makes things sound positively dead! Very useful for mid-range instrument positioning when mixing, but not at all enjoyable for music listening. EQing helped the low end, but not the ultra-highs. I've heard better things of the JH5, but I've yet to try them. I don't recommend the SE535 for general, casual listening though.

post #12 of 24

I actually disagree with the statement above. The SE535 has enough bass (and sub-bass) and, while its treble isn't as well extended as its other competitors, it does not have a rolled off high. It is to be remembered that the SE535 is a mid-centric earphone though, I personally would think anymore bass and treble will divert itself from its silky smooth sound signature that Shure has always been aiming for.

 

Anyway, I'd like to comment on the current topic, I haven't audition the 1964-Q. If it is any help, the last time I auditioned the JH5, I thought they were slightly darker than what I'd prefer (but then I do love my treble!).

post #13 of 24

Well, to be fair, Shure's signature can be very uninspiring to some. I remember being slightly disappointed when I first got my SE425 -- but it grew on me eventually.. I just didn't agree with the sonical description of the SE535 though tongue.gif

 

And the JH5 is being dark might had something to do with me listening to the ER4 before going to the JH5. That's not exactly the best situation to listen to JH5, I'd imagine.

post #14 of 24
Thread Starter 

What if I can get a used JH13pro for around 600$?

No idea about the warranty status though.

post #15 of 24

previous owner of 535 here

loved it to bits, just that cable is irritating. do strongly consider changing it if you are getting.

New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
Head-Fi.org › Forums › Equipment Forums › Portable Headphones, Earphones and In-Ear Monitors › SE535 vs JH5 (Had Westone 4's)