Review of the Shure SE535 Earphones

By Nicole Trein


After hearing and reading so much about it, I finally gave in and decided to test out the new Shure SE535 earphones. Knowing that these were top of the chart best selling devices (and after taking a peek at the price tag) I had very high expectations from these earphones. After giving them a go, I can assure that these earphones will change the way that you listen to music or listen to anything for that matter. This model has met and exceeded all my expectations and even surprised me with its various features making my experience unbeatable. 

I received the box and was glad to see how tight and secure the packaging was. The earphones and all its contents (which include the carrying case, airplane adapter, volume control, a 1/4'' adapter, and a little kit containing various sleeves) were meticulously stored in a small box giving the device no space to move around which is always crucial if the product is being shipped. But this device was safely packed and immune to any damage that shipping long distance is so infamous for. The box was easy to open and so were the parts inside. Overall it was a good experience upon arrival. 

Now, onto the product inside the box. I tried out the SE535 in bronze which I thought was the perfect color. It gave it a little tint, varying among the black cable, but at the time it was also discreet in my ear. In the carrying case comes a little pack with a variety of sleeves (foam sleeves in small, medium, and large, flex sleeves also in small, medium, and large, yellow foam sleeves, and triple flange sleeves). I found the best comfort and seal in the medium foam sleeves but it depends on the user and Shure has provided all you need to find the perfect fit. When I first saw the actual earphones I was a little concerned because the earpiece seemed to be bulky and I wasn't sure exactly how comfortable they would feel. At first I had a bit of a hard time putting them on correctly. The cable coming out if the earpiece is a little thicker and goes over and around your ear. It took a little getting used to because I normally don’t like putting on earphones that way but it fit comfortably nonetheless. Also, don't be afraid to move them around a bit because you just have to adjust them until you find the right fit. After that they felt pretty good. They stay in place and contrary to what I had assumed the earpiece did not weigh down on my ear despite how bulky it had first seemed to me. They could’ve been a bit smaller for my taste but it was still okay. They were very light and at times they felt like they weren’t even on. I can easily workout and jog with these on and not constantly worry about them slipping. Every now and again I would check them and found that they remained tight. The cable is thick and secures all the inner workings and better yet they are replaceable. So you can switch between other cables and replace them if one day you might need to (without sacrificing the wonderful sound the earphones produce). 

Which finally brings me to the make it or break it of earphones- the sound. Regarding sound, these earphones are complete in all aspects. Those guys over at Shure really thought of everything. The earphones offer everything I was looking for: clarity, range, and powerful bass. It isolates all outside noise. You could use these as ear plugs, they are powerfully resilient to any obstruction. I was extremely pleased with the range of sound it offers. It exposes all parts of a song from the tremble of an electric guitar to the deep thump of a bass drum. I listened to one song and found out that there is a cello playing for the duration of the song which had never stuck out to me before. The bass is powerful and accented in all the right times. It is definitely goose-bump worthy. I'm a huge fan of acoustic songs and covers, and live performances and these earphones certainly do these raw performances justice. It captures every strum of a guitar and slight variance in an artist's voice. The sound is balanced nicely between left and right ear pieces and for certain songs (that are arranged in such a way) it sounds as if the sound is slowly shifting from one side to the other, wrapping itself around you until you become enclosed in the music. What more could you ask for from an earphone? Great clear sound, perfect resonation, balances between ranges, and an explosive bass. The SE 535 offers all of it. 

I listened to Sail by Awolnation and I was blown away. The sound that the Shure SE 535 makes is awesome. They are louder than the PFE232 and the W4R on the same volume setting. The bass was intense. But because it had such a strong bass it didn’t have the same clarity of the PFE232. The next song I listened to was Heart of Life (live at Nokia Theater) by John Mayer. The instruments sounded wonderful. When the electric guitar played for brief moments it gave the same effect of when you hear it coming directly from its amp. The vocals were slightly better from the PFE232 though. Last song I listened to was My Body by Young the Giant. All I have to say is the SE535 are great for this type of more upbeat rock songs. The dynamics were profound. Whenever the guitars and drums began a faster and more loaded progression, the sound was doubled. I loved it, especially since this is my go-to workout song.

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