- Dec 13, 2006
TWS is limited by two things in my opinion.
One is the BT technology itself. It is a technology designed more for transmitting digital information such as keyboard and mouse and as such is not inherently good enough to transmit sound information without the use of a lossy format (losing data). The sound quality can be improved by dividing up the responsibility of the chip receiving the digital signal from managing everything. The challenge is by separating different components from the BT chip you need more electronics making the internals bigger.
This leads to and exacerbates the second issue with TWS. Everything has to be crammed into one small enclosure! This leads to less than optimal driver configuration and allows for very little if any room to let the driver have a cavity (more important with dynamic drivers). The TWS manufacturer then is reduced to using electronic processing to make up for the poor driver placement and design.
Neither of these issues will be solved by a custom shell unless its using only BA drivers and is designed to fully encased with no cavities and then all electronics would need to be placed on top of the driver configuration making it too bulky.
Having tried 2 different hybrid TWS and one hybrid (Fiio FH5) with TWS adapter (Fiio UTWS5) I can say that using an adapter gives the best possible experience sonically speaking. A good TWS adapter has enough room to allow for more electronics so the BT chip can be dedicated to only the BT processing and a separate DAC cab ben used to convert that signal into music. This combined with the IEM itself not needing to be compromised in regards to driver placement and design will give you the closest to a wired sound as possible and it is very good in my opinion.
The good news is if your existing custom IEM is either a 2 pin or COAX connected model you will be able to easily attach it to a TWS adapter allowing you to get the best of both worlds sonically speaking.
Well said, that's why the best sounding TWS are so far those designed with a dedicated air chamber for physical tuning as well as (in some cases) a metal driver enclosure - HA-FW1000t, AKG, Final siblings etc. I'd say they are acoustics-focused in their design rather then purely relying on DSP to tune a crap DD driver (or even hybrids) thrown into an ABS housing to sound like a fart cannon (that leads to many MANY TWS are distinctly V-shaped sounding with boomy mid-bass and substance-less mids, while also boosting the presence range for a "modern" signature that can't be farther away from the realm of fidelity).