Initial Impressions: UE Superfi 5 Pro v Shure E3c
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BillC

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OK, I've been listening to the UE Superfi 5 Pros for about a week and thought I'd post my initial impressions versus the E3c's I'd been using.

Equipment: My portable rig is currently an iAudio X5/Cardas mini-mini/SM3

Externals: The UE 5 Pros come with a shorter, thinner cord. They don't exude the same rugged feeling that the E3c's do. On the other hand the phones themselves are larger with the UEs. They don't fit as far into the ear and stick out much farther. The UEs seal against the outermost part of my ear canal. This is actually very comfortable but doesn't provide as much noise isolation as the E3c's. I lost sound in one ear with the UEs one day but a quick reseating of the cord on that side fixed the problem.

Sound: The first thing I noticed was the bass. I had the bass boost engaged on the SM3 with the E3c's. I immediately switched it off and haven't turned it back on since with the UEs. The UE bass is tight and has much more impact than the E3c's. The next thing I noticed was that the UEs are much more dynamic than the E3c's - definitely a livelier listen. After a week with the UEs I traded back and forth with the E3c's a few times today. Doing this I also noticed a bigger soundstage with the UEs - I find myself falling into the music in a way that never happens with the E3cs. The high end of the UEs also seem a bit less rolled off than the E3c's but I do get the idea that they're a bit more rolled off than they should be - I'll have to do some comparison listening with my Senn 595s and through my speakers when I get the time.

On the whole I'm happy. The UEs are extremely comfortable despite sticking out a bit more than I'd like. I may still use the E3c's in very noisy environments but to my ears the UEs are definitely an upgrade from the E3c's - when I was switching between them today I was definitely missing some "snap" and "sparkle" with the E3c's.
 
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ZackT

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Quote:

Originally Posted by BillC
On the whole I'm happy. The UEs are extremely comfortable despite sticking out a bit more than I'd like. I may still use the E3c's in very noisy environments but to my ears the UEs are definitely an upgrade from the E3c's - when I was switching between them today I was definitely missing some "snap" and "sparkle" with the E3c's.


That's a great review BillC, I'm wanting to upgrade my E3c's - torn between the UEs and E4's but from how you describe the bass the UEs sound more like me.

ZT
 
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joelongwood

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Nice review, Bill. It's also nice to know that someone else hears as I do.......for the most part. To my ears, the Shures, although rolled off, sound as if they have a bit more treble energy. Maybe this is due to their lack of bass in comparison to the UEs. I think that's a distinct possibility.
In any case, the Super.Fi Pros are, as you say, "definitely a livelier listen."
Thanks for sharing.
 
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