So I've done a lot of research, both on this website and all over the Net, but since I'm in college and live in an area where I can't audition high-end IEM's, I really need some help. I know y'all get frustrated with "which headphone" threads, since this is a highly subjective topic, so I'm going to provide every detail of what I'm looking for so it's not a vague question.
What I'm looking for is an IEM that is fun and enjoyable to listen to, while providing really high quality sound but not being super analytical and picking out artifacts. I just want something comfy (a little isolation, but not too big of a deal) that I can plug in and enjoy the music. I want to get lost in the music.
I currently own two good-quality 'phones:
Etymotic ER-4P: They sound great, very flat obviously but clear and detailed. Maybe too detailed, and a little sibliant. My biggest complaint about them is fit/comfort though. I cannot stand how deep these things have to be rammed into my ears. I've tried every tip, and the ones that provide a good seal aren't comfortable while the ones that are comfortable don't provide a good seal. I plan on keeping these though, so I don't need my next pair to be super analytical.
Grado SR225: The sound drives me up the wall. Even though they are really comfortable, guitars often sound like they're right in my face while the vocalist seems to be at the back of the stage. I know Grado has a unique "house sound," and I do not like it at all.
The music I listen to:
Modern Rock (Disturbed, Atreyu, Anberlin, Incubus, Skillet Rise Against, etc.)
Classic/80's Rock (Van Halen, Guns 'n Roses, Bon Jovi, Chicago, etc.)
Vocal (Celtic Woman, Sinatra, etc.)
I also like some Country, Rap (rarely), and a little Classical. The genres I don't listen to are Techno, Dance, House, Dubstep, or Electronica.
I only use a portable rig. I can't afford a home rig, so this is what I use whether in bed or around campus:
iMod 5G -> ALO Cryo LOD -> RSA Shadow -> ???
So I want an IEM that I can just plug in and get lost in the music. I don't want to analyze, but I want quality.
Budget: up to $500
I am really interested in Westone - I have been pouring over comparison threads among the W3, W4, and UM3X. However, any other suggestions are welcome.
Edited by Audiophile_Apprentice - 3/25/13 at 11:11am