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Dual armature worth it? Westone um1 vs. Aurvana in-ear3

Poll Results: assuming they're around the same price, which one is going to sound better and work better for my intended use?

 
  • 0% (0)
    westone um1
  • 100% (2)
    aurvana in-ear3
2 Total Votes  
post #1 of 12
Thread Starter 

first post! sorry if this has been asked before, but i couldn't find any threads on point and i have a few special needs/interests in my pick.

 

I'm a musician/self-producer who does most of my critical listening on a pair of vintage akg k240s (amped).  They sound great to me. very even and perfect for reference but obviously full-sized headphones that need to be amped don't cut it for everyday listening, travel, etc.  Also the open-back design makes them unusable for tracking, libraries, and other situations where one or two way isolation is required.

 

i'm looking towards IEMs as a more portable alternative to sennheiser hd280s (which i often use at studios during tracking) and something i can use on stage (i'm a singer/guitarist), as well as for everyday listening when i'm not at home.  since this is my first serious foray into IEMs, i'm trying to keep it around $100, but can bump it up to $150 or higher range if there is a big payoff in sound quality.  Aside from good isolation my only other constraint is that they must be wired above/around the ear as a consideration for stage use.

 

i'm looking at the westone um1s, and shure se215s, which i'm sure a lot of people are familiar with, but also the creative aurvana in-ear3s.  The shures have dynamic drivers so i'm not sure i want to go down that road (want to really get a taste of how IEMs sound in comparison with traditional headphones).  I'm leaning towards the westones but the aurvana's are on sale for something like $10 more than the westones (thanks, logicbuy) and they have dual armature drivers.  Detail and balance is pretty important to me and i figure dual armature would likely provide that more than a single armature driver, but the westones may be "better" earphones to begin with.

 

music preference is all over the place.  pop, rock, hip hop, electronic, ambient.  not a whole lot of jazz or classical but pretty much everything else is in good rotation.

 

 

thanks for the input! been reading the site for a while and its a great resource.


Edited by re-animator - 1/24/12 at 8:54pm
post #2 of 12
Thread Starter 

fwiw, i also have a chance to pick up a pair of sennheiser ie8s at around the same price.

post #3 of 12

I have used both earphones and I have to say the Creative In ear 3 have an overall better sound quality than the um1, however the um1 is more fun and have punchier bass. Depends on the music you listen to each have it's own strength. The mid on the in ear 3 is on par with that of the um3 and shure 425 with the laid back smoothness of some higher end sennheiser. Amazing for vocals and mid centric sound. Plus, it have a very non fatigue sound signature.

 

The Um1 on the other hand is better suited for modern music as it's fast, more exciting and bassier than the in ear3. The build quality is also much better than the below average cable on the in ear 3 hair thin cable.

 

If creative can make their in ear 4 with thicker cable and slightly more sub bass, it will definitely be a true audiophile grade earphones that can compete with shure, westone, ue.

post #4 of 12
Quote:
Originally Posted by Butter123 View Post

I have used both earphones and I have to say the Creative In ear 3 have an overall better sound quality than the um1, however the um1 is more fun and have punchier bass. Depends on the music you listen to each have it's own strength. The mid on the in ear 3 is on par with that of the um3 and shure 425 with the laid back smoothness of some higher end sennheiser. Amazing for vocals and mid centric sound. Plus, it have a very non fatigue sound signature.

The Um1 on the other hand is better suited for modern music as it's fast, more exciting and bassier than the in ear3. The build quality is also much better than the below average cable on the in ear 3 hair thin cable.

If creative can make their in ear 4 with thicker cable and slightly more sub bass, it will definitely be a true audiophile grade earphones that can compete with shure, westone, ue.

FWIW...the In-Ear 3's are $73 on Adorama.com with Free Shipping..but you could pick up in-store. Or they're $74 on Amazon if you want to avoid sales tax.

Might want to take a listen to the Havi B3 Pro I's (dual dynamics) as well...just got them; very nice for $62
http://www.head-fi.org/t/711582/havi-b3-pro-1-impressions-thread

Also the Vsonics...I have the VSD1S (currently $38 on Amazon) which are a tremendous value for the money. Supposedly the VSD3's are even better at $55 on Amazon.
Edited by GearMe - 12/27/14 at 6:40pm
post #5 of 12

The Havi B3 looks very interesting, seems similar to my beloved Sennheiser ie8...Till I broke them. Im looking for a good isolation earphones that I could sleep with or be used on the plane. The B3 doesn't look to be a isolation earphones and more of a open sound stage type(Which I like a lot).

post #6 of 12

Looks like Creative heard user's complain about the hair thin cable and rerelease them in braided with iphone function. Now the In ear 3 is a no-brainer for budget minded audiophile. 

post #7 of 12

Westone UM1 is single driver.  W20 is much better dual driver choice.

post #8 of 12
Quote:
Originally Posted by Spyro View Post
 

Westone UM1 is single driver.  W20 is much better dual driver choice.


I bet the W20 would be a better choice, but then again, it's 2x the cost of the in ear 3. I do agree single armature driver always have disadvantage since they have a hard time producing all sound spectrum from one driver.

post #9 of 12
Quote:
Originally Posted by Butter123 View Post
 


I bet the W20 would be a better choice, but then again, it's 2x the cost of the in ear 3. I do agree single armature driver always have disadvantage since they have a hard time producing all sound spectrum from one driver.

 

+1. The um10 sounded anemic and quite frankly unimpressive imo and so did the SE315. 

post #10 of 12

Why not try GR07? A good dynamic driver is easily superior to a single armature and, generally competes pretty well even against multi-BA IEMs. The GR07 is reasonably flat, ultra low distortion, responds well to eq (if you need that), can be inserted fairly deep to achieve good isolation and are the most comfortable universal IEM I've ever used. That rotating nozzle is an ergonomic masterpiece.

 

They currently sell for $99, brand new, and you can get them on Amazon.

post #11 of 12

I bought a logitech UE 600vi  on sale the other day and I was very suprised how good they sounded for $30. The best single armature earphones I heard under $100. All the frequency revolves around the mid, but have a nice warm bass extension and laid back top. 

 

Using it my iphone 5s is wad alright, with some lacking of the lower frequncu, but those poppies really shine with a small portable amp.I used ASUS U3 and it completely brings out the lush mid and the overall dynamic. Imo, they sounded better the Klipsch x10, westone um1! With an amp, its sounds like a very dynamic for a single BA setup. Build quality however is on pair with than of a $30 set.

post #12 of 12

I use ue900 and earsonics sm3 and was amazed at how well my friend's vsd3 are. I would really recommend them and also the vsd5 which is supposed to be better. I find the havi earpieces big and two of my friends who own them have problems such as lower volume in one side, one side stopped working, sound cutting out because of cable problem near the plug.

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