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UM56 seal is disappointing - does yours deliver better isolation than the foam tips?

Discussion in 'Headphones (full-size)' started by danny334, Mar 16, 2007.
  1. danny334
    I had been really looking forward to the delivery of my UM56. I must say that I have been impressed by the way the highs are now prominent and the bass is tight.
    Only one draw back. The seal is no where near the black foam tips I use with my UM2. Even my well worn foam tips give a better seal.

    Why is that? They do fit okay but I hope I my expectations were realistic. Anyone had a similar experience?

    Is your foam seal better than your UM56?
    Has anyone compared the two?

    Dont get me wrong, sound wise it's staggering but I use mine on the train and I was hoping to get a seal similar to even the ER4-14F foams.

    This is disappointing but before I send it back I need to have a few opinions.

    I have been thinking of going custom but if the seal does not come close to the foam tips then I might as well forget it.
  2. The_Duke_Of_Eli
    Generally if they're not offering good isolation then you won't get good sound from them. Have you tried shifting them around in your ears while they're in to see if it's a tooling issue? Try to see if somehow you can hold them in a certain position that gives you overall better isolation. I can't speak from experience, but the custom tips should offer better if not at least matched isolation than the standard tips.
  3. danny334

    I have shifted them around and exhausted all the possible angles and I'm not sure there more I can do. it's the fact that I hear all the banging of the train with the tracks which the foams always prevented.
  4. JeffS

    You need to have them remade. I got my UM56s almost a year ago, and had to go through a couple of refits. Both my audiologist and Westone suggested that I get a closed mouth impression. This was based on the fact that I was using them for personal listening instead of stage monitoring and singing. The fit was "good", but not quite right. On one ear it actually caused a bit of discomfort after about an hour or two of listening.

    My audiologist made a few adjustments and the fit did become better, but not perfect. I had them redo that ear, but this time, I did it open mouthed. It was a much better result. The fit, comfort, sound, and isolation were a night and day difference. The difference was enough for me to realize that what I thought was a good fit on my other ear, really wasn't what it should be. So, I went in for refit number two. Again, fantastic in all aspects.

    When I originally did my order, I paid extra for overnight delivery with my tips. To Westones credit, they picked up the charges for both refits with the rapid shipping. I was prepared to pay extra, and was very pleasantly surprised, that they just took care of it. They have excellent customer service.

  5. danny334

    Thanks for the info. Are you saying then that your isolation is far better than foam tips?
  6. JeffS
    Yes, for me, the isolation was far better than foam tips.

  7. nothingman
    I dug up this post because I'm having the same issue.

    I think I'm getting a good seal because the sound is better in all aspects when compared to my previous universal tips (Shure black foam and regular Complys), but the isolation isn't near as good. I can hear too much noise from my keyboard and rustling papers on my desk while listening at low levels.

    I see that JeffS got his refit and says the UM56 isolation was "far better" than foams. What are other UM56 owners' impressions? I'd like to have a larger sample pool before taking the time to get the molds taken again.

    My summary:
    Fit: Best I've had in an IEM
    Sound: Significant improvement over foams with E500
    Isolation: Less than nearly all other tips I've had

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