I'd like to thank Westone for the sample. I did my best to supply a neutral and comprehesive review as I could. Sorry for the lack in English competence as it ain't my natural language :)
Various dubstep songs, 24 bit vinyl rip flacs (Michael Jackson, The Beatles, Frank Sinatra) and my Cd-rip bands (Orphaned Land, Hijazz)
dac/amp: Audioengine D1
dap: Sansa Clip+
Tip: Standart Grey Tip, Silicone
SENSITIVITY: 114 dB SPL @ 1mW
FREQUENCY RESPONSE: 20 Hz - 16 kHz IMPEDANCE: 25 ohms @ 1 kHz PASSIVE NOISE ATTENUATION: 25 dB DRIVER: Balanced armature, full-range WEIGHT: 0.445 ounces/12.7 grams CABLE: EPIC Replaceable Cable CABLE LENGTH: 50”/128cm
Build Quality, Box, Cable, Jack, Y Split, Isolation, Fit and Microphonic Effect
- I did not alter this part much as the whole series is almost the same in workmanship.
- Perfect in every aspect. Over worked though not micro detailed. Everything is in the semi soft dark grey box.
- As cable, it is the standart double helix black cable. As usual, its sturdy and does not seem to come apart unless you want it to. But the termination had changed into a Shure compatible extension.
- As the jack, we can oberserve that semi soft material being used. A L type small jack it is. A tiny W emblem is engraved on. And this looks sturdy too unless you pry or something.
- Y split looks enough. And light as the cable. The W is here too. But the material quality is a lil' bit poor here (at least at mine)
- And drivers seem strong and solid. There are no empty spaces between them. (unlike Tdk ba200 or RedGiant A00) This improves their longevity.
- There is no problem regarding isolation. Humming of the commune buses engine does not harm your listening and you can still audit it clearly at %60 volume level on Clip+
- No need to ask any questions about the fit :) This is a headphone that'd never come off your ear by itself. BTW, the semi hard plastic wrapping around the ears do a good job in here. However this one is fitting better (deeper, tighter) than um 30 and um3x. See, I am not counting um3x rival Ba200 here :)
- There are no microphonic problems due to the inserting style in the ear.
So, let's begin :)
Lil' bit bright and mid + treble centered. Feels natural even the bright character you'll see.
Quick and puchy but shallow basses here. They do not hit deeep as its brother does. Unless you're listening hiphop, rap, dubstep or drumn bass then you won't feel the lack of it.
Being a mid-centic IEM, it's easy to notice all the back vocals. E.g. While listening Hadouken's Parasite http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hJudxieYdKk frontman and his support is at the front and everything behind. Or it's really possible to hear other members supporting Hetfield singing King Nothing. Or II, you can easily get awed as the opera singing starts at Il Divo singing Caruso http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7ibPr2o38jQ. Other instruments which are in the mid band are easy to pinpoint and seperated one by one according to their real spacing.
You might be exposed to serious treble here! But I had seen much before, so thats not an issue; moreover, unless listening metal or trance then it's almost no problem. Do not mistook as a treble forward IEM, it's only in the blood of this. E.g King Nothing's trebles do not tire your ears. But well you'll notice it's weakness in metal while listening The Virginmarys - Dressed to Kill'inde http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8s49UZn1nZg
Stage, Instrument Seperation and Details.
Stage is a click or two feeling wider over the other models. But frankly not really wide in total. And you won't experience pinpointing unless its a 50 piece orchestra :) Seperetionwise its between excellent and good. Details scream their presence sometimes, whisper rarely,
Night and day difference didn't occured after plugging to amp. But MJ is absolutely shining now! All the instruments have spaces around them, a lively atmosphere you'll feel. Sinatra's scene gained a weightier touch and his voice + the blown instrument became harsher as he is finishing "the record shows I took the blows"... Sadly (or as expected) it's still weak at hiphop and other bass heavy genres. There is an empty background at these genres. You only only feel satisfied with that IEM and that genres after a tip change.
It's not an IEM to prat as it's bass is only symbolic ;)
Unless the record is bad, none most of the time.
Being a single BA driver means reduction in some fields. But it turns this weakness into an advantage and becomes a shining diamond for instrumental, classic, jazz, blues and other non-bass demanding genres. While 3 um 10s make 1 um 30 in terms of price, this is a good deal if you arent hiphop or headbanging type.