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Earsonics SM3 vs UE TF 10 vs Westone 4

post #1 of 87
Thread Starter 

Hello everyone. As some may know already here, I am on a quest to compare many IEMS because I am currently deciding over a wide range of IEMS on which to buy, I would like to know which one is the best out of all of these.

 

I am looking for

 

Bass impact and quality. Most basshead friendly

 

Most detailed trebles.

 

Comfortable.

 

Also I would like to know if there is any difference between the earsonics sm3 and the earsonics sm3 v2. I would also know if I need an amp for any of them and if so which amp do I need? I usually lean on the bass boosting 

post #2 of 87

No difference between SM3 v2 and SM3.  

 

I would easily discern that you're looking for a v-shaped frequency response so my vote goes to Ultimate Ears TF10.  

 

SM3 v2 known for non fatiguing and non-sparkly trebles that too some are even recessed (I'm not sure my pair comes in tomorrow).  

 

Westone 4 is known for a more balanced yet not neutral signature.

 

TF10 known for sparkly highs, spacious soundstage, more bass quantity than the two above.

 

While you're in this ballpark in terms of price why not just get the JVC HA-FX700.

post #3 of 87

Look into the Sennheiser IE8 as well if you're a basshead.  Notoriously bassy.

post #4 of 87

I will say from my experience if you want clear, detailed mids and highs that are slightly on the warm side that sounds like the music is being played on a top notch turntable with woofer sounding bass from a floor standing speaker that at times when the track calls for it will shock you with some serious body pounding sub-bass then you have to go with the universal Atrios by Future Sonics. If you want this on heavy doses of Horse steroids then its Custom made MG6Pro will make you say Help my the bass is pounding so good but my ears are hurting.

post #5 of 87

SM3 v2 then amp it with the headstage arrow 4g 

post #6 of 87
Quote:
Originally Posted by sneaglebob View Post

Hello everyone. As some may know already here, I am on a quest to compare many IEMS because I am currently deciding over a wide range of IEMS on which to buy, I would like to know which one is the best out of all of these.

 

I am looking for

 

Bass impact and quality. Most basshead friendly

 

Most detailed trebles.

 

Comfortable.

 

Also I would like to know if there is any difference between the earsonics sm3 and the earsonics sm3 v2. I would also know if I need an amp for any of them and if so which amp do I need? I usually lean on the bass boosting 


SM3v2 will the the most bass friendly, TF10 most treble friendly and W4 most mid friendly. So SM3v2 would suit you more. Another is the IE80. Have not tried the SM3v1 however. 

post #7 of 87
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jeremypsp View Post

Have not tried the SM3v1 however. 

 

The sound (drivers, tuning) of the SM3 v1 and v2 are exactly the same, the only difference is in the housing and removable cables.  Any sound difference should be entirely miniscule and purely due to the different shape of the housing.

post #8 of 87
Quote:
Originally Posted by guhmo View Post

 

The sound (drivers, tuning) of the SM3 v1 and v2 are exactly the same, the only difference is in the housing and removable cables.  Any sound difference should be entirely miniscule and purely due to the different shape of the housing.


I see, interesting :O 

post #9 of 87

You may want to note that some people have fit issues with the TF10s, I personally never did when using Complys. The TF10s have a sort of V-shaped sound signature, where there is more emphasis on the treble and bass, and some consider the mids to be recessed. I did find the mids on the TF10 lacking for some songs, but the TF10s have a very fun sound that I can't see many people disliking. The soundstage on the TF10 is also very spacious amongst the 3-driver IEMs. However, be prepared to spend another 50-150 dollars on an aftermarket/custom cable for the TF10s, as the stock cable on it is simply ATROCIOUS. The memory wire (the part that is sort of stiff to form a shape around your ear) is extremely stiff, and coiling up the IEMs and putting them in your pocket makes the memory effect extremely annoying, as it will be uncomfortable to wear and, if angled in a certain way, will push the IEMs out of your ear or cause you to get a poor fit. The stock cable actually broke after about 2-3 months of daily use. There are some very good aftermarket cables available, I would personally recommend the Lune/Arete series of cables, or the Beat Audio cables if you have a larger budget. I have tried many different cables on the TF10, and I could instantly tell that there were clearly audible differences between the stock cable and the aftermarket cables.

 

The SM3s (v1) feel very fragile due to the plastic that is used to house them, and the design of the housing may make putting them in your ears uncomfortable for long periods of usage because the end of the housing will rub against your ear. The SM3v2 fixes this by having a new opaque plastic housing that feels more sturdy. The SM3s are also touted to be very "chameleon" sounding, meaning that they accurately reproduce music as true as it can. However, some of the people I know who have owned SM3s say that the treble is slightly lacking, and that it was a mid centered IEM.

 

I have not tried the Westone 4 for a very long period as Westone IEMs, for some reason, don't fit in my ears very well :P I would recommend you trying each of them out before you buy them, as always, since despite what reviews may say, what matters most is what YOU hear. ;)
 

post #10 of 87

^Agreed with above. Many people just can't get it to fit, even with the flip mod. That being said, stock cable is horrendous depending on the weather. If it's warm(60+ degrees), it's decent and not too hard to wrangle with. If it hits 50 degrees or lower, it starts having problems.

post #11 of 87

Earsonics custom models are very well built! But yep the universal does seem fragile but has a nice sound. I like the universal (SM3) over the Shure 535.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Peculier View Post

You may want to note that some people have fit issues with the TF10s, I personally never did when using Complys. The TF10s have a sort of V-shaped sound signature, where there is more emphasis on the treble and bass, and some consider the mids to be recessed. I did find the mids on the TF10 lacking for some songs, but the TF10s have a very fun sound that I can't see many people disliking. The soundstage on the TF10 is also very spacious amongst the 3-driver IEMs. However, be prepared to spend another 50-150 dollars on an aftermarket/custom cable for the TF10s, as the stock cable on it is simply ATROCIOUS. The memory wire (the part that is sort of stiff to form a shape around your ear) is extremely stiff, and coiling up the IEMs and putting them in your pocket makes the memory effect extremely annoying, as it will be uncomfortable to wear and, if angled in a certain way, will push the IEMs out of your ear or cause you to get a poor fit. The stock cable actually broke after about 2-3 months of daily use. There are some very good aftermarket cables available, I would personally recommend the Lune/Arete series of cables, or the Beat Audio cables if you have a larger budget. I have tried many different cables on the TF10, and I could instantly tell that there were clearly audible differences between the stock cable and the aftermarket cables.

 

The SM3s (v1) feel very fragile due to the plastic that is used to house them, and the design of the housing may make putting them in your ears uncomfortable for long periods of usage because the end of the housing will rub against your ear. The SM3v2 fixes this by having a new opaque plastic housing that feels more sturdy. The SM3s are also touted to be very "chameleon" sounding, meaning that they accurately reproduce music as true as it can. However, some of the people I know who have owned SM3s say that the treble is slightly lacking, and that it was a mid centered IEM.

 

I have not tried the Westone 4 for a very long period as Westone IEMs, for some reason, don't fit in my ears very well :P I would recommend you trying each of them out before you buy them, as always, since despite what reviews may say, what matters most is what YOU hear. ;)
 

post #12 of 87

My strong x2 on the SM3's.

 

I have had the Westone 4s, but sold them as I found them thin sounding, bass light and somewhat lifeless.  I also had and enjoyed a pair of UM3x, but sold those due to the constricted soundstage.  I recently got a used pair of SM3 v2, and have to say that I think they are my favorite IEM to date.  Something about them just sparkles, and they have an impressive soundstage for a BA phone.  I have not found a genre of music the SM3s don't sound fantastic with.  I got a new pair of FX700s around the same time and am trying to love them as much as the SM3s, but not quite managing.  Perhaps after more burn in. 

post #13 of 87
Quote:
Originally Posted by Glow Fish View Post

My strong x2 on the SM3's.

 

I have had the Westone 4s, but sold them as I found them thin sounding, bass light and somewhat lifeless.  I also had and enjoyed a pair of UM3x, but sold those due to the constricted soundstage.  I recently got a used pair of SM3 v2, and have to say that I think they are my favorite IEM to date.  Something about them just sparkles, and they have an impressive soundstage for a BA phone.  I have not found a genre of music the SM3s don't sound fantastic with.  I got a new pair of FX700s around the same time and am trying to love them as much as the SM3s, but not quite managing.  Perhaps after more burn in. 

I heard the FX700 need a long time of burn-in, but the highs may still sound harsh. 

post #14 of 87

I love my FX700. The timbre, detailed bass, energy is w/o competition, IMO.

post #15 of 87

SM3V2, is not recessed. Try removing the filter. That's where the highs are. (sacrificing some soundstage of course.)

IMO, Westone 4 and SM3 are 2 sides of the same coin. What SM3 doesn't have, Westone 4 does it perfectly. 

As for TF10, it's a good buy, sounds V shaped, and notorious for fit issues. Good luck.

And for basshead quantity, get IE8. :)

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