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Best mid-centric IEM for me?

post #1 of 29
Thread Starter 

I'm looking for a new IEM, my budget is 400 dollars, but I might stretch it if necessary. I want the IEM to be very lush and intimate, and I want it to sound "think". One of the main things I want to avoid is a lean or thin sounding IEM, I want it to sound very thick and lush. I want a lot of bass (enough to make it lush, intimate, and thick) and I want mids to be the focus of the IEMs sound signature. I want it to sound thivk and lush, but I don't want it to sound bloated. Also, I don't want the soundstage to be huge because I'm afraid it will lose its intimacy and will sound a bit distant, but I'm not that concerned about that. Lastly, I want it to sound very musical and engaging, the last thing I want is for it to sound lifeless or boring. I listen mostly to male vocals, rock, and heavy metal. From what I've read, the Westone UM3x might fit my bill, what do you guys think? Also, some of my music is badly recorded so I can't anything that is too unforgiving.


Edited by SmettMark - 3/23/13 at 3:54pm
post #2 of 29

Yes, UM3X surely fits that description but I find that you can pretty much get the same qualities of UM3X as you can with W4 but with the added bonus of a nice soundstage.

 

UM3X will have a harder slamming bass and the midrange will be just slightly more forward but soundstage is pretty much non-existant or tiny.  Everything is closed in sounding and "in the head" so to speak.  Treble is rolled off but does very well with a little EQ.  Damn near perfect IEM to me except for the tiny soundstage.

 

W4 bass is a bit less but not lacking.  Everything is very refined and "audiophile" sounding.  Very balanced and proper.  Vocals are fabulous.  Best out there IMHO.

 

But if bass is a priority and you don't mind a small soundstage, UM3X may be the best bet.

 

GR10 is my other favorite for vocals but the bass might be a little lean for you.  It's present but no real slam factor at all.


Edited by Spyro - 3/23/13 at 3:53pm
post #3 of 29
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Spyro View Post

Yes, UM3X surely fits that description but I find that you can pretty much get the same qualities of UM3X as you can with W4 but with the added bonus of a nice soundstage.

 

UM3X will have a harder slamming bass and the midrange will be just slightly more forward but soundstage is pretty much non-existant or tiny.  Everything is closed in sounding and "in the head" so to speak.  Treble is rolled off but does very well with a little EQ.  Damn near perfect IEM to me except for the tiny soundstage.

 

W4 bass is a bit less but not lacking.  Everything is very refined and "audiophile" sounding.  Very balanced and proper.  Vocals are fabulous.  Best out there IMHO.

 

But if bass is a priority and you don't mind a small soundstage, UM3X may be the best bet.

 

GR10 is my other favorite for vocals but the bass might be a little lean for you.  It's present but no real slam factor at all.

Well, I don't really mind the bass not having that much slam as long as the IEM sounds thick. I also read somewhere that the W4 sounds a bit thin and lean when compared to the UMX3 or other bassy and mid-centric IEMs, would you say thats true? I also read that it sound a bit boring and less musical when compared to the UMX3 (although thats very subjective), would you say this is true as well? I don't really need it to have a WOW factor, but on the other hand I want it to be at least a little engaging.


Edited by SmettMark - 3/23/13 at 4:00pm
post #4 of 29

W4 is often described as "lush".  To me this means somewhat thick but not bloated in any way.  The lower midrange boost provides the lushness.

 

Boring?   Really hard to say and up to personal preference.  I have high praise for it but desire a bit more crispness and clarity but you could say this about UM3X as well.  W3 does this but it lacks the lush midrange.  With W4, it's not too bassy, not too trebly but amazing midrange for vocals despite a lower midrange slight veil.

 

W4 might do it for you afterall.  Much recommend over SE535.

post #5 of 29
Agree with what spyro described. UM3X would have been the perfect IEM to me too if the soundstage has been wider and higher treble extension. The mids of the UM3X is very lush and non fatiguing. It places you right in front of the singer. You can plug in for long hours of usage. Bass slam is impactful as well. Get the RC version and you can upgrade to a silver cable later for deeper bass slam and slightly wider soundstage.

Same as spyro, I went for the W4 and enjoyed it. Mids definitely still retains the full lushness and smoothness but ain't so "in your face". Soundstage is definitely wider than the UM3X.

In terms of "thickness", the mids of the UM3X will be "thicker".
post #6 of 29
btw spyro, just a sideline question, was the veil in the W4 eliminated with the new star tips?
post #7 of 29

UE 900 for sure, and the W4R is now was on discount from Earphone-Solutions for under $400.  You might want to consider the Sleek Audio SA7 also.

post #8 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by xaddictionx View Post

btw spyro, just a sideline question, was the veil in the W4 eliminated with the new star tips?

 

I only used them with star tips so nothing to eliminate. My opinion was based on the star tips.

 

It's not horrible in any sense...just something to note.  Virtually every IEM I have ever used has a fault I could pick out...every one.  With W4 it just happens to be the lower mid cloudiness/veil.  Other than that it is nearly flawless so don't read too much into that.

post #9 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by xaddictionx View Post

btw spyro, just a sideline question, was the veil in the W4 eliminated with the new star tips?

They could sand down the shells to nothing and shove the drivers right into your ears. The veil would still be there.

 

Anyways, third/fourth the UM3X rec. 

post #10 of 29
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by DrSheep View Post

UE 900 for sure, and the W4R is now was on discount from Earphone-Solutions for under $400.  You might want to consider the Sleek Audio SA7 also.

I heard the UE900 is really basslight, I'm afraid it will sound a little thin.

post #11 of 29

The Dynamic drivers IEMs like JVC FXZ100, FXZ200, FX700, MTP Copper, MTP MD offers thick rich midrange(where different instruments shine), Crisp clear highs and tight deep punchy bass.

post #12 of 29
Agree with one of the above recommendations by HF, the Monster Miles Davis Tributes nail every single aspect you're after. Your original post may as well have been a description of them.
post #13 of 29
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Selenium View Post

Agree with one of the above recommendations by HF, the Monster Miles Davis Tributes nail every single aspect you're after. Your original post may as well have been a description of them.

Do they perform well with rock and heavy metal?

post #14 of 29

SE535, RE-262 or IE7

 

in that order

post #15 of 29

SE-535 - mids mids mids!! 

 

some of the best bass in quality as well...


Edited by ayaflo - 3/24/13 at 9:55am
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