Shure se215 ($99)
Which is better?
Edited by GPLUD - 6/5/12 at 9:12pm
I only own the SE215 so I can't do a comparison, but the Shure's will definitely not disappoint.
From what I read, the UM1s are more balanced/flat,
My own ears say that the 215's have the beautifully warm Shure sound, however, the sound stage isn't extremely expansive.
The standard answer is:
Neither is better, it just depends on what music you listen to.
What music would a "balanced armature, full range" (UM1) favor?
What music would a "Single Dynamic MicroDriver" (se215) favor?
From what I've read, Westone wins on durability and comfortability and people have confirmed they can lie down on a pillow while wearing the UM1s. Can the same be done with the 215s?
I don't own the UM1, though I did recently get the W2s and the housings are probably similar in size. I do own the 215s and I always felt they were good for wearing in bed. But nothing in comparison to the Westones. They're simply so much smaller than the 215s that they really vanish in your ears. You could wear both and lay your head on a pillow most likely but the Westones will be more comfortable.
The UM1s are pretty old now I believe and while I've never heard these and I'm not a fan of single BA IEMs. I had a pair of Shure 210s and the sound is very nice but pretty boring to my ears. The 215s are going to be much more lively. They also have pretty good sound quality overall in my opinion but now that I'm back on BAs with the W2s, I can see the difference in how precise BAs are vs DDs.
For the price, I don't think you'd be disappointed with the 215s though based on what I've been reading if I was going for these, I'd probably be considering the VSonic GR06.
The VSonic GR06 is a little out of my price range. So westones are seemingly more comfortable and durable and as for sound quality,well, I think that will come down to personal preference. I think I'll go with the UM1s and if somehow I am dissapointed I'm sure Amazon's great return policy will come through.
Now I think I'll go for the se215s as the only thing that the UM1s seem to be better at is comfortability and durability. The durability isn't really an issue for me as there is a 2 year warranty on each of the sets. Many more have commented on the "fun" dynamic sound of the se215s versus the flat, yet good response from UM1s. Plus, they are 10-20$ cheaper.
and @Codefox, i can't seem to find the Vsonics for around $80. If i did I would probably choose them over both these IEMs.
did you try ebay?
there are several sellers there, with price around $61-63 including worldwide shipping
This is where I saw them for $80
I actually had another friend who was asking me about SE215s before I read your thread so I had spotted this then. The link came from the big 240 IEM thread. If you get them, make sure to report how they sound!