Metal/Progressive Rock/Alternative Rock/Post Rock IEM
Nov 29, 2012 at 3:52 PM Post #17 of 91

myaman

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Ok I have narrowed it down to either the W4, the 4R or the UE900. I have included the 4R's because I have read on a thread that the provided W4 cable was not of high enough quality and when replaced will provide a noticeably better sound. I also saw multiple comments about the isolation of the W4/4R not being good enough at keeping sounds out in noisy environments. Can any W4/4R owner comment on those 2 points?
 
I have seen threads on this forum where the W4/4R were recommended over the UE900's but the replies were mainly referring to the strengths of the W4/4R rather than comparing them against the UE900 per se (except for stating that the bass on the UE900's was somewhat underwhelming compared to the W4/4R), so I'm still not entirely sure which to go with for the genres I listen to.
 
Any advice would be greatly appreciated and thank you all in advance :)
 
Dec 1, 2012 at 4:30 AM Post #20 of 91

myaman

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That's the main problem I'm facing right now!
 
I can't test any of the mentioned IEM's as they're not available. So I'm counting on the feedback from head-fi threads and the reviews I'm reading. However, the more I read, the more options I see people recommending and the more details I see people and reviewers discussing. Which gets very confusing after a while 
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Dec 1, 2012 at 4:37 AM Post #21 of 91

TwinQY

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Ok I have narrowed it down to either the W4, the 4R or the UE900. I have included the 4R's because I have read on a thread that the provided W4 cable was not of high enough quality and when replaced will provide a noticeably better sound. I also saw multiple comments about the isolation of the W4/4R not being good enough at keeping sounds out in noisy environments. Can any W4/4R owner comment on those 2 points? Isolation is fine. Olives or biflanges give a deep enough seal that most ambient noises and speech gets shut off. Cables...well, let's not get into that debate. I personally can't hear any difference between the W4 or the W4R (stock and aftermarket). 
 
I have seen threads on this forum where the W4/4R were recommended over the UE900's but the replies were mainly referring to the strengths of the W4/4R rather than comparing them against the UE900 per se (except for stating that the bass on the UE900's was somewhat underwhelming compared to the W4/4R), so I'm still not entirely sure which to go with for the genres I listen to.
Again, I can only say that the W4s do very, very well with metal, alt, and post rock. In fact, it's pretty much all I've been listening to with them for the past few months. The slightly veiled mids and laid-back treble does well to take away the harsh edge from recording artifacts on the grittiest of metal. Sounds low-fi, but the details in the lush mids will make you think otherwise. It's breathtaking with instrumentals so fervent in post rock. Went through an entire session of Mono and Toe's discography, exhilarating. No comparisons with the UE900, which were what you were looking for, sorry. 
 
Any advice would be greatly appreciated and thank you all in advance :)

 
Dec 1, 2012 at 4:54 AM Post #22 of 91

Techno Kid

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I received my SM3 V2 yesterday and thoughs might be one to checkout.  I was going to get the SM3 V2, W4 or UM3X and I went with the SM3 and I'm glad I did.  Its got a mid forward sound that's warm a detailed with really good bass along with a above average soundstage and the best 3D imaging I've heard from an IEM.
 
I'd say either the SM3 V2 or the W4 would be your best bet and one doesn't sound better than the other it comes down to what sound signature you like the most, the balanced sound of the W4 or the mid-centric sound of the SM3 V2.  For the types of music you listen to both are going to sound great so you have a tuff decision.
 
Dec 1, 2012 at 5:03 AM Post #23 of 91

TwinQY

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I received my SM3 V2 yesterday and thoughs might be one to checkout.  I was going to get the SM3 V2, W4 or UM3X and I went with the SM3 and I'm glad I did.  Its got a mid forward sound that's warm a detailed with really good bass along with a above average soundstage and the best 3D imaging I've heard from an IEM.
 
I'd say either the SM3 V2 or the W4 would be your best bet and one doesn't sound better than the other it comes down to what sound signature you like the most, the balanced sound of the W4 or the mid-centric sound of the SM3 V2.  For the types of music you listen to both are going to sound great so you have a tuff decision.

W4s are mid-centric as well. I'd say the sigs are sort of similar between the two, just that note presentation and presentation in general are so vastly different. Got to trade the W4 in for a SM3 a few months ago with a non-head-fier. From what I remember, the SM3 had a much thicker presentation, less of a mid-bass hump (though still warm as heck), less treble, and yeah, that really 3D presentation. The W4s have more of a 2.71828D presentation, it's less circular, more spacious, positions in a less upfront way. Notes are less thick, though not exactly lean as well.
 
One thing I can say for the SM3 is that while I didn't like to listen to them with rock and metal for sheer enjoyment, monitoring and playing with them on was a godly experience.  
 
Dec 1, 2012 at 5:12 AM Post #24 of 91

Techno Kid

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I didn't think they were mid-centic so much as being a bit mid forwad which is different to me, they sound more balanced with the other frequencies than the SM3 does imo.  Now thats not the say the SM3 is so mid dominant that they don't sound good I just think they are more forward than the W4.  I've only heard the W4 for a few hours (maybe around 5) and its been a few months so I might not be remembering them as good as I should.
 
Dec 1, 2012 at 6:05 AM Post #26 of 91

Techno Kid

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The W4 is a bit wider in the soundstage but the SM3 has better imaging do to how good the 3D presentation is, its the best I've heard.  Both separate about the same imo.  Like I said ones not better than the other it will come down to the sound signature that you want because based just on technical abilities there equal.
 
Dec 1, 2012 at 6:19 AM Post #27 of 91

TwinQY

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The W4 is a bit wider in the soundstage but the SM3 has better imaging do to how good the 3D presentation is, its the best I've heard.  Both separate about the same imo.  Like I said ones not better than the other it will come down to the sound signature that you want because based just on technical abilities there equal.

Pretty much. Although I thought the SM3 separated and extracted more, but the W4 separates and places everything else with more space and coherency from an audience's perspective. I thought the W4 had more microdetails as well, but I'm heavily biased toward one side, so a huge grain of salt should be taken 
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Dec 1, 2012 at 6:55 AM Post #28 of 91

Techno Kid

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A lot of people tend to think warm IEM's like the SM3 might lose out on micro detail though I think its about the same and if there is a difference either way its a small one.
 
I'm going to loan my SM3 to a member for the UE900 to try so that will be interesting to see how they stack up with the SM3 and W4.  The TF10 was my first real top-tier IEM so I want to know how much better the UE900 is if at all.
 
Dec 1, 2012 at 7:05 AM Post #29 of 91

myaman

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Thank you guys.
 
Could you please clarify what imaging and 3D presentation refer to? I can't seem to find an article that describes that.
 
Techno Kid are you going to be loaning the UE900's sometime soon? As I could wait to hear your thoughts on them. I'm very interested in hearing from someone who has tried all three!
 
Dec 1, 2012 at 8:21 AM Post #30 of 91

Techno Kid

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Well I wont be doing the loan tell the first of January.
 
Imaging is referring to the positioning of the instruments and sounds, a IEM with good imaging you can tell where the instruments are placed so you can here a guitar on your left, drums from behind and so on.
 

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