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Heir 3.A vs. JH5 vs. 1964 V3

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 

I'm considering making the leap into the CIEM world.  I've gotten a little overwhelmed as I done research on what model purchase.  


So far, in my budget (<$450) I've come across 3 different CIEM's I'm considering:


1.  JH5

2.  1964 Ears V3

3.  Heir Audio 3.A


I initially found the JH5's but, after reading the reviews, I'm worried about sibilance on vocals and lackluster bass response. That said, the long standing reputation and build quality is attractive. The 1964 Ears V3's and Heir 3.A's sound like they don't have either of the drawbacks mentioned above but that sound may be a bit too warm, small, and lacking in clarity and separation on the high end.


A little background on my preferences:  Until delving into the CIEM world I would have considered myself an "audiophile."  Not in the pretentious "its not complete sound unless is a flat profile on vinyl" type but sound quality and presentation matter to me.  I've got an aftermarket head in my car that I tweaked and an HK 6.1 surround at home that I feel like I'm constantly retweaking to get the best sound stage out of.  I guess my preference for sound is a deep and wide sound stage.  I like the feeling of being surrounded by a musical presentation.  I've got pretty eclectic tastes including artist like M83, The Naked and Famous, Tribe, Mos Def, Stevie Ray Vaughn, Aretha, Phoenix, Mumphord and Sons, etc.  I wouldn't consider myself a basshead because I don't want the low end to overtake a song but I don't want it to be underrepresented either.  On songs like OK Go "This Too Shall Pass" with a solid kick drum and deep bass, I want to really feel it but not have be muddle or interfere with a clear presentation of the rest of the range.  I'm new to all the technical terms but I guess I'm looking for a full, deep, and detailed sound.  Last note:  These will mostly be used on my commute plugged directly into my smart phone on 320 kbps files.  Not that I won't use them at home or maybe eventually invest in a portable amp.  


Any help, tips, or advice on which one of these 3 would be the best choice would be greatly appreciated (or some others I should look into).  Also, it would appear JH Audio is the only company that sells an accessory cord with an in line mic.  My job puts me on the phone A LOT through out the day and it would be nice to be able to take calls without having to unplug the earphones.



post #2 of 7

I have had the JH5 for about 3 years and the bass is huge.  Not sure where you read otherwise?


In 10 years on HF it is the best $425 (including impressions I have ever spent).  Bass is big and full, midrange is very present (cause vocals sound great) and it has plenty of treble as I am NOT a fan of a treble roll off.  I had JH5, JH13 and JH16 at the same time and it went JH16>JH5>JH13.   JH5 has MUCH more bass qty and weight than JH13. 

JH5 is really a poor man's JH16.  Similar in every way but JH16 is more 3D and holographic.


Efficiency is sensational.  Zero distortion and deafening sound levels.

post #3 of 7

You would think there would be tons of threads regarding JHXX vs 1984, but unfortunately since they are custom (and cost a lot), people pick one or the other, and are really happy with both of them.


I know Spyro has said in previous threads that the number of drivers does not equate to better quality.

post #4 of 7
Originally Posted by meat01 View Post


I know Spyro has said in previous threads that the number of drivers does not equate to better quality.

Well....I do think 3 is the sweet spot and I do think 2 or 3 drivers (versus 1) gives a more expansive and 3D sound in the case with BA drivers.

post #5 of 7

Hey OP, thanks for typing all of that out just so I can say "me too."  lol


I thought I was a headphone/earphone junkie until I stumbled upon this site.  Audio isn't something new to me but just the computer audio and head-fi part.  I've been looking at CIEMs ever since joining this site not too long ago.  I've pretty much narrowed it down to the 1964 V3 or V4 vs. JH 13 or 16.  The frugal side of me is telling me to go with 1964 V3/4 since it will be my first CIEM so I don't have to invest too much money to see if CIEMs are for me.  But my "go big or go home" mentality wants to just go for the tried and true JH13/16 and be "done with it."  I really don't truly believe there is such a thing as being "done with it" though (I'm sure many here will agree with me that because it never ends).


So...I'm ready to buy but my fate lies in the hands of 1964 or JH.  Whoever offers a decent enough discount, sale, or coupon first will get my money.  Since I realized I missed out on the Memorial sale then there's bound to be another sale coming.

post #6 of 7

From what I've read, the JH5 is a good choice, but IMO there are better universals out there available for the same amount of money. 

post #7 of 7

I am in the same situation!


The review of the 1964 v3 are very good. |Joker| gives a fantastic 9.5 in sound quality. Jh5 also seems very good but there are few reviews out there, but this is compensated to the fact that Jerry Harvey is a genius! 


I am slightly on the JH5 side because to me It's a trusted brand with a big name behind. At the same time i have the idea that the 1964 v3 sounds a little better. Just guessing I know!



If someone owns both it will be nice to have a comparison, 


anyway my coin is ready and I will flip it! Really!

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