CIEM (VisionEars VE8 vs Audio 64 A18T / A12T vs Westone ES80)

Which one should I go for?

  • VisionEars VE8

    Votes: 1 20.0%
  • Audio64 A18T

    Votes: 2 40.0%
  • Audio64 A12T

    Votes: 1 20.0%
  • Westone ES80

    Votes: 1 20.0%

  • Total voters
Oct 18, 2018 at 6:11 AM Thread Starter Post #1 of 3


500+ Head-Fier
Feb 4, 2018
Hi fellow audio-lovers,

I'm looking for some insight / feedback on some CIEM's I'm currently debating between.
For over 2 years I've been using only Campfire Andromeda's (I don't use headphones so I use my IEM's for both home & office listening).

Current Gear
  • Source: Samsung Galaxy S9+ / IFI Micro IDSD Black Label (potential Mojo/Poly in future or Astell & Kern Kann)
  • IEM: Campfire Andromeda
Purpose / Listening Conditions
  • At home (to relax or do critical listening)
  • In the office (to get in the zone while coding / programming)
  • Occasionally on the go but that is mostly limited
Why go Custom
The most important reason to swap from my Andromeda's to Custom IEM's is an increase in comfort. Secondly, I'd appreciate if extended listening sessions were more feasible without build up of pressure or discomfort in my ears in general. Thirdly I could benefit from a better seal to listen at lower volumes (minor benefit, I know but hey..).

I have a very broad taste in Music.
Ranked from most important to least important genre:
  1. Relaxing music (Jazz, Blues, Folk, singer-song-writer Classic,...)
  2. Rock (Soft & Hard Rock - Some Metal but generally don't enjoy screaming or death metal for example)
  3. Occasionally EDM (but not the main focus)
Some of my favourite artists include:

Relaxing music

  • Dire Straits
  • Missy Higgins
  • Aquilo
  • Jorja Smith
  • Ed Sheeran
  • Mumford & Sons
  • All sorts of singer song writers (JP playlists, etc..)
  • Muse
  • Rise Against
  • Volbeat
As I use one single IEM to listen to all my music (I don't have a closed back headphone and for the moment have no intent of getting one), I'm looking to get a custom IEM that can pull it's weight in every genre. I know (if we're really going for the best of the best) by nature certain tunings will do better on certain genres (according to most people atleast - still subject to preference obviously) but I could appreciate how my Andromeda's handled most genres pretty well.

In-Ear Options
The in ears I had currently selected are:
  1. *VisionEars VE8:*These are currently my top contender as they are based in Germany (Köln) which means I don't have to mess with customs, so the ordering process will also be very smooth - Can even have my ear impressions done directly by VisionEars. And there's obviously the fact that they just receive really good reviews in general and some people declare it their number one CIEM to keep if they were only allowed to have one single CIEM.
  2. *A18T / A12T:*I'm not sure how big the difference is with the anti-ear-fatigue system in terms of facilitating extended listening sessions? As a software developer, I could have my in ears in for a couple of hours so comfort over extended periods is an important aspect. In most reviews I come across the A18T / A12T seem better for EDM fan's whereas the VE8 are better for people who enjoy vocals. As a lot of my music falls under the categories of singer song writer, rock, relaxing music, the VE8 seem more suited as EDM is just an off-genre in which the A18T seem to excel for example.
  3. *Westone ES80:*Not sure I'll dig these as the Westone sound has always been fairly dark. It has changed a bit with the ES80 apparently but haven't had the chance to demo these. Anyone with experiences on this one who is able to compare them to the VE8 or Audio 64 flagships?
Qualities of future CIEM

  • Comfort
  • Sound Quality (mainly great for both relaxing music & rock)
  • Build Quality / Durability
Not important
  • Huge amount of customisation. It's not my main goal to create the most unique CIEM. I'm more interested in achieving really good audio quality (as it's my main driver for anything) and creating a better experience overall (increase comfort, better listening experience, etc...).
Budget is pretty flexible depending on the durability and the quality of the IEM.
As most acryllics seem to last quite a while if taken care of properly, I'm willing to invest some money into a durable end game solution (Does one ever stop buying - after some time I'll probably want a sound system at home etc but for now IEM is my focus).
Overall budget is somewhere between 2000 and 3000 euro so meet in the middle would be perfect (aiming for 2500 so VE8 - ES80 or discounted A18T)

I'm located in Belgium so working with VisionEars is easier as I can drive to Köln if necessary.
If I were to go with Audio64 I'd opt to work with a company in the UK that functions as a broker with Audio64 (
Westone would also be bought via variphone (broker in Belgium).

I appreciate any feedback! :)

Have a nice day!
Oct 18, 2018 at 9:42 AM Post #2 of 3


New Head-Fier
Jan 4, 2017
rip, this nice long post and no one has replyed to you... Btw, if you decide getting 64 audio, why work with uk dealers, when you can just order from their website. place order, send impressions, wait 1 month and recieve ciems by mail..

I found this thread by googling " ve8 vs a12t " , don't know why am I comparing a12t to others ciems, because I have allready ordered a12t's. Should recieve them next week.
1999$ ciem ended costing 2400€ after shipping and 24% vat and 1.5% customs to finland.
why not try out ciems before buying ? you've missed canjam london, it was on july , (21.7.2018). a headphone exhibition, where you could have tried out many ciem brands. next time they are close to you in london is next summer.
Oct 18, 2018 at 9:44 PM Post #3 of 3


Headphoneus Supremus
Help and Recommendation Contributor
Feb 21, 2015
You should look at the Alclair Electro 6 driver Electrostatic Hybrid. The other the Empire Ears Phantoms were ones I would just stop and listen to music I enjoy. At RMAF those two just stood out to me as ones I liked to listen to music with.

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