Westone B30 3-Driver Earphone Extended Bass
Westone B30 3-Driver Earphone Extended Bass Review by Earphone Solutions
Summary of Customer Ratings & Reviews
Let me start off with the fact that I own (and love) 2 pairs of lower-end Westone earphones. I have had a pure audio pair (UM1) and the Adventure Series Alpha earphones. Both have been great. I bought the W30 because it was on sale here for less than $300 and I wanted to try a higher end earphone. I am sorry to say I was not impressed at all. My disappointment is in two areas: 1. The earphone is significantly fatter than either my UM1 or ADVs. This is most noticeable when I sleep with them on, which I do when I am flying on a plane. I tried and hated noise-cancelling headsets, and much prefer an in-ear earphone to minimize noise and to listen to music. My other, lower end earphones are so low profile, I cannot tell I am wearing them when I sleep on my side and my ear is against the pillow. I cannot say the same for the W30s. I feel pressure on my ear canal due to the increased thickness of the W30 body. 2. The audio quality is not 2x greater than my low end Westones to justify the price. Now this can certainly be a very personal and subjective opinion, so take it with a grain of salt, but for me, listening to a wide range of music (rock, jazz, acoustic guitar etc), the sound of the W30s are simply not THAT much better than my single-driver Westones. It takes a VERY critical listening in an environment with very low ambient noise to really hear or notice crisper highs or tighter lows. I listened to my other earphones with the W30s in back to back to back sessions over the same passages that I knew very well in my favorite songs. Without being totally focused on the passages, it was hard to tell much difference. Perhaps this is not so much that the W30s are bad but that the UM1s and the ADVs are that good, especially on a $$$ cost basis. Personally if someone asks me today which one they should get, I would tell them to get an entry-level Westone and pocket the change, and that for everyday use, in the car, on the subway or just walking around, you will not hear enough sonic differences between the W30s and the lower end AND lower priced Westones. I know this goes against many of the other reviews on here, but this is my opinion. The W30s just don't justify their price. The entry level Westones are hands down a much better value and perform very, very well for everyday use. The W30 is a lot more money for not a lot more performance and a lot bigger size.
I've been using Westone in-ear phones for several years, but have always used the lower-end models (UM2, W1, etc) because I most listen to spoken word podcasts. When I saw a recent sale on the W20 and W30 I thought an upgrade would be useful, especially since they included a cord with an iPod remote, so I could also use them for the frequent conference calls I have to be on. After reading the other reviews for the W30 I decided to splurge, even though I figured my old, failing ears probably wouldn't notice much difference. Boy was I wrong! The difference I can hear in virtually everything I listen to compared to the W1 I've been using is astonishing, but the especially shine when listening to my favorite music. If you're at all on the edge about whether upgrading to nicer IEMs is worth it, I say go for it. You won't be disappointed. I'll also add that the reasons I stick with Westone are because they fit wonderfully and because of their stellar customer service. I always by them from EarphoneSolutions since I know the warranty will be honored. When a cable on my first pair of UM2's failed after a couple years I contacted Westone to enquire about getting it repaired and they instead sent me a new pair, even though they were well outside the warranty period. The fact that they also make great products is just another plus.
The Westone 3 is a great IEM. I've tried many over the course of a few years, and these are my favorite over any of the other pairs I've owned in every category: clarity, bass, and comfort. I can wear these for hours with no physical fatigue from them being in my ear, and no listening fatigue as well. The fit pack that comes with this kit beats anything else I've seen, a very wide range of silicone tips and their foam counterparts. If anything, only triple flange tips are missing from the pack, but I'm not sure you would notice. The bass is rich and powerful without being overwhelming and the mids/highs are equally as good. The cable quality of the Westone3 is also great, braided and flexible without causing microphonics. I was lucky enough to get the Westone3 at a deep discount when they were discontinued, but I wouldn't hesitate to buy the new W30 at MSRP.
I was able to experience the full capabilities of these IEM's using the largest foam tip. The quality was better that I was hoping it would be. The only caveat is that I don't like using foam tips... on any of the IEM's I own. One of the other brands that I own provide an oval shaped silicone tip and this works very well. I often have trouble when buying IEM's because of the difficulty getting the right fit. It seems my ears are larger than average. Pros: balanced and natural sound pleasing aesthetics seem strong and durable Cons: finding the right tip for my ears
very satisfied! currently i only use the earphones as a musician on Sunday mornings at church. since i only used them once a week I had been using a cheaper model, however i was experiencing issues hearing clearly and earphone failure in the cheaper brand. i decided to purchase something better. 3 drivers make a difference, great clarity, cut the volume to 1/2 of what i was using with previous earphones. our team includes 3 vocalists, keys, drums, bass & guitar. i hear each very distinctly. i would purchase these again, however what i've discovered in the weston3 makes me consider what the next step up delivers. Pros: good clarity Cons:
I have made at least 12-15 transactions with Earphone Solutions over the years and have NEVER once been disappointed with the customer service. A couple times I even received inquiry responses over the weekend. They are top notch all the way. One of the few merchants I have dealt with where it is all about YOU, the customer. In the last 10 years I have gone through literally dozens of IEMs. I love this hobby and am always searching for the holy grail of sound. I purchased W3 when it first came out in 2008 (?) and have actually re-bought it 3 times since realizing I have yet to find any universal IEM that surpasses it for what I like in an IEM. I have also really enjoyed W4, UM3X, GR10, SE535, ER4 and a host of other IEMs however W3 is very unique in how it allows big bass and exceptional clarity to co-exist. Normally big bass masks the other frequencies to a large degree but despite a big bass presentation and a somewhat pronounced mid-bass emphasis (great for guitars), somehow the air and clarity stays fully intact even moreso than the more balanced UM3X. Its a really unique thing I have never heard in any other universal IEM with such a large sound. I think this has much to do with the 3-way crossover design of W3. It was the first IEM in history to have this feature. There were long delays to introduce this product but the results were ground-breaking and worth the wait. The W3 has an uncanny sense of displaying space within the sound presentation. Some might refer to it as reverb. W3 is the one IEM whose presentation sounds closest to that of wearing headphones. Everything is so vast and expansive. Its really euphoric and intoxicating. While I dont have much technical expertise to confirm this, I wonder if it has something to do with the way each driver is tuned differently in terms of its decay. In any event its one of those experiences where you can only marvel at such a large sound coming from such a small enclosure. Lastly, I must say that while tips tend to be a very individual preference, with W3 I think the foam comply tips provide the best sound over any other tip you can use. I have even used custom UM56 tips and there is something about the comply tips that make things smooth but with exceptional clarity at the same time. While I want to use silicone tips, and its not bad in any way, the presentation sounds a little off in terms of cohesiveness and some siblance as well. P-series complys all the way with W3. So if you like a big bold fun sound with great detail and clarity at the same time, look no further. W3 remains ground-breaking and legendary in what it is capable of doing straight out of a player. No amp required whatsoever. Pros: BIG full sound with great clarity. Cons: Nothing.
Dear Steve, thank you so much for the kind words and for the great review!
The clarity, definition and enhanced separation of these superb earphones make the price much easier to understand/accept. These are far better then my old Shure earphones, but these were twice the money, to be fair. I am forever spoiled! Maybe it's time for you to step up and hear what you've been missing. Pros: Strong bass, crystal clear midrange. Excellent isolation from ambient noise. Good selection of tips ensures you'll find the ones that fit your ears. Cons: Large plastic body will not be comfortable in small ears. The thin wires don't seem like they will be sturdy enough, but reviews indicate they are.
Bought these from Earphone Solutions back in late 2009 as a birthday present to myself, and I quickly fell in love with the sound signature. I used them constantly, whether it was going for a run, listing to music while studying, or just to block out the world for a bit. In the late summer of last year, the wire nearest the headphone jack began to unravel. I was a bit surprised given the perceived quality of these IEMs, but I decided against a warranty claim because oh my gosh, the SOUND. I didn't really care about the wire. And then, all of the sudden, the right IEM seemed hollow-sounding, and I switched ears to make sure I wasn't going deaf. Sure enough, the low end of the right unit has vanished completely; I'm guessing a bass driver failure. Naturally, I'm out of warranty by about six months when the sound goes... Westone offered me an open-box pair with a 90 day warranty for $175 if they couldn't repair mine. Now, I know I'm out of warranty, but I can't get them fixed even if I pay for that service? That's not cool; what if the new ones do the same thing in six months? Do I have to pay again? These phones were a big investment on my part, and I honestly expected them to last at least 4-5 years given Westone's rep for quality. I can't justify paying more money for another potentially defective pair of phones, and did I mention that I LOVED these things? I have recommended them to tons of people, and one of my friends bought a pair from here after listening to mine. Going forward, however, it's going to be difficult to recommend something this expensive that doesn't hold up, pains me to say. Pros: -Incredible bass response (great for EDM) -Tremendous sound quality with no sibilance present in the upper range -Very, very comfy fit with the rubber tips -Low impedance makes them easy to use with portables -Sound, sound, sound --- it's like a new world for your ears Cons: -They lasted less than three years before a dead driver and wire issues -If I want a new set with a warranty that's more than three months, I have to pay retail. Not pleased
These earphones are better than the majority on the market. But they're not competing against Sony, Panasonic, Apple OEM, or Coby earbuds. It's competing against Shure, Logitec, Sennheiser, and Klipsch. It's a close fight, as anyone knows, who's been researching new earphones, and these Westone 3's are a contender for sure. However, Westone seemed to make certain aspects of these more prominent than others... Pros: -Clarity of treble and mid-range -Twist cord that doesn't bunch -An array of earbud tips to chose from -Made for medium - large ears -Light and sturdy construction Cons: -Over-abundance of treble -Weak bass (not punchy) -Large housing design -Sound is barely better than my $60 Altec -Lansing Backbeats
This is my foray into the world of better quality earphones. My pedestrian view was that Dr Dre was doing a pretty good job, but something drove me to seek a second opinion. Dre must have received his medical degree online, while Westone is clearly Ivy League, fellowship trained, and board certified. Westone has forever changed my appreciation of music. The range and depth and complexity of all my music has increased ten-fold. I'm hearing intricacies the artist wanted to convey. Earphone Solutions offered an amazing price and outstanding service. Item shipped within hours of placing my order. I wish I was that organized! Pros: Everything Cons: It would be nice to have the option of an inline adaptor for iPhone usage (although it's not all bad - this does come with a vol. control cord ) - picking up calls and jumping forward in my playlists are convenient while commuting. In some respects it's good without calls interfering with my music experience.
Hi Lou, We are glad to hear you are happy :)
I own the Westone 4r which is perfect with a huge portion of my listening genres. but I missed the Westone 3 with its huge bass and great fun factor for so many other types of music I listen too. I recently picked up a new pair of westone 3 to use on my treadmill and while doing chores like cutting grass and when listening to my fun type music..and I am so pleased. After using Westone products..all others just don't have the comfort and fit for me. My wife after years of saying "I don't want anything in my ear"; and preferring full size headphones..recently became addicted to my westones . She says she doesn't even feel them there. Some people think that the thin braided cable is weak..that is simply not the case..I have had no problem whatsoever with the cable in the past 7 years of using them. For me Westone is the perfect fit. Pros: Bass Flush comfortable fit Cable Cons: Mids could be a bit more forward..but not a big deal with all the other positives.
These headphones are exquisite. The bass is incredible but does not over power the mids or highs. The idea of the triple drivers is great. All of the music blends together and creates just a wonderful sound. No matter what song is played you hear music that you have not heard before. These headphones are just incredible. Pros: Mids are great, Highs are clear and pristine. Bass hits hard but is not overwhelming. These are truly an audiophiles dream. Cons: They are expensive.
I've had a bit experience over the last 10 years with high end earphones, starting with a set of Etymotic ER6, then UE Triple.Fis and finally Westone 3s. The Etymotic's I found way too pronounced in the mids, very thin on the bass. The UE's lasted me about 5 years, but they were retired after damage. Finally I got the Westone 3s which I've actually owned for about 2-3 years now so had plenty of experience with them. Over this time they have been absolutely magical. The audio clarity absolutely blows the other two away, with full but not overpowering bass, beautiful mids, and crisp highs. Perhaps the mids are a fraction recessed, but frankly I find the overall response the smoothest of all the earphones I've tried. Listening to my favourite music is an absolute dream with these (particularly the orchestral albums of Hooverphonic and Birds Of Tokyo). Every instrument stands out on its own, and I'm in the situation where any other headphone just sounds downright inferior in comparison. Sensitivity is excellent. I generally use them with an Android as music player, and I usually have the volume around the 1/4 to 1/3 mark. An amp is thus not required. They are incredibly comfortable in my ears, sitting flush so I can lie ear down on a pillow without interference, and the isolation is excellent. I use the small silicone tips as frequent insertion and removal at work would wear foamies out a lot. The included foamies have better isolation, but I'm in a quiet environment so happy for the ease with silicones. On long haul flights, these are my constant companion. I can easily manage a 14 hour flight with them permanently in my ears, and they are comfy enough to keep them in but music off during sleep just to keep noise down. I regularly jog with these, and unlike other earphones, they stay firmly in my ears and don't get dislodged. The build quality is excellent, despite initially feeling quite fragile they are quite sturdy. The cable is quite thin but very durable. The cable is a little susceptible to microphonics, particularly if it rubs against a jacket zipper, though this is infrequent especially if you wear the cable properly (behind your head). My first set got stolen (lucky robbers!) and after researching others as replacements, I had to stick to these. Overall, one of the best purchases I have made. Pros: - Clarity - Frequency response - Isolation - Comfort and fit - Sensitivity Cons: - Cable microphonics if rubbing on eg zipper.
I have had this IEM for quite some time now, bought from EarphoneSolutions, obvious reasons. I think now is a good time to give a review, since I have given the "sound" some time to sink in. Don't get me wrong, but I think this IEM is a little bass heavy. I am coming from a Westone 1, and made a jump to this one, comparing the two, Westone 3 definitely has a lot of everything. But to me, the bass seems to overpower the mids and highs a bit. I had to adjust the equalizer and use a "detail"-based amp to adjust the sound signature to my liking. For listening to music and enjoying it, I would definitely recommend this IEM. But if you also plan to use this IEM for watching movies on the go, you might want to look elsewhere (hence, I kept my Westone 1 and use it for that purpose) Pros: a lot of low, mids, and highs (emphasis on low) bargain for it's price great for enjoying music (really shines when an amp is used) Cons: a bit bulky and heavy compared to little sibling (Westone 1) a bit too much bass to my liking not recommended for watching movies (dialogue is lost)
First of all, i would like to thanks earphone solutions for and fedex for making such a smooth and painless shipping. Really impressed with the transparent service rendered by earphone solutions, you guys did a good job and guess what, my friend also bought. I really love these earpiece, its so good that you ever wonder the purpose of living is to die for music, and listening to the westone 3 makes you feel, how should i say, touching the string chords of my heart, sorry for being a bit drama, it does everything so well, it ups my music to another whole new level, when you listen to the westone 3, paired with audiophile DC recording plus the highest MP3 bit rate, i can only tell you one thing, music tuned and time to perfection, just like a swiss watch, the tonality, the beat, the nice tight punchy bass without over powering,the warm mid and the expressional high of the music is so lovingly complimenting every genre of the music, vocals projected well, nothing is over emphasize, as i listen to Bach's violin concertos, brandernburg concertos, am shock, the layering is all there, the bass of the biggest violin, don;t know the actual name, can actually be felt by me, the violin, which project the voice of a human, actually do sound like a human voice to me when i listen to it, not to forget the plucking of the harpischord, i wonder if Bach is alive, he would have say' Thanks Westone for making my music sound so good and doing justice to it'. Trust me, when you listen to the westone 3, in regards to the age of the music, it will help you do justice to the singers, the instruments to it, to conclude, westone 3 makes me a more emotional person when i put them on. i can FEEL you Westone :) Pros: + the clean tight punchy bass that pumps my ears without killing it +the warm sincere mids +the emotional highs which is non piercing +the clean separation of the instruments without the artificial separation in it, it feels musical, wholesome +making original XRCD, DSM, 24/96 even more audiophile, normal recordings like the DDD sounds much better with all areas being involved Cons: -wish the cables are thicker
I have a Westone UM1 and 2, but was not satisfied with the bass response so I took a chance based on the number of positive feedback. I was not disappointed. This has far exceeded my expectation. The bass is excellent. The sound is warm, yet smooth with high clarity. The only negative is that these are bulkier and doesn't fit as well inside my small ears as the other Westone. This is probably due to the three drivers. However, once I start listening, the sound overcame the size and end up using them for hours. Pros: excellent bass good isolation smoothness clarity Cons: slightly bulkier than other Westone
I've using many lower end earphones that range from 100~200. I had doubts over whether this was worth the price tag but once I received, I was blown away. Highs mids and lows are clear and distinct. Bass sounds very comfortable and sound definitely has a warm feeling to it as mentioned by previous reviews. Fits very well and rests comfortably in ears as well. Pros: Sound Fit Isolation Cons: Cables are not replaceable like shures. Cables tend to get tangled easily
Overall I am very satisfied with my purchase. Fedex International shipped them extremely fast; I was blown away. I didn't have to pay any duties upon delivery, but I was invoiced for a small amount later, but I expected duty anyways (I live in Canada). Only earphones over $50 I've ever owned, so obviously they are the best I've had. I have *briefly* listened to a friends Shure 535's and they seemed flatter and more accurate than these W3's, but I can't say which I preferred. I think I will enjoy the bass of these more in the long run. Pros: -Great sound quality -Excellent isolation -Cable feels sturdy -Good variety of eartips -Fits well; no fear of them falling out. Cons: -Cable can be too short to connect to something like a desktop computer without an extension.
Bought these about a month and a half ago and been using them pretty much everyday since for atleast 3 hours a day. Still running perfectly fine and I dont even look after them that well ^.^ Ive got a few minor cons about the W3's though. First the highs roll off pretty badly and the mid bass hump is just too much but thats why theres an equalizer. After equalizing them for hours I finally found the perfect EQ and now it sounds like heaven. These are the most comfortable earphones I've ever used and I've been through over 10 descent - professional earphones and these are by far the best for comfort and isolation. And FEDEX International shipped to me in a few days and I live in New Zealand. Anyone looking to spend $350 for a earphone look no further, this is definitely the best choice ! Highly recommended. Thanks for reading (: Pros: Sound Comfort Durability Looks Very light Cons: Rolled off highs Mid bass hump Fairly large 3.5mm plug
I have never heard music like this before! Music sounds like somethings much much better than i ever could have dreamed with these! I love them Pros: Cons:
It took me over 3 months to finally decide on the Westone 3's. After reading reviews on Shure's and Sennheisers, I thought I would take a risk on the 3's because of the feedback online and 3-way driver technology. I travel frequently and work out often. Therefore, I needed in-ear headphones that are durable, powerful and secure. The pros: I can say, after 1 month of ownership, these deliver spectacular ranges.... I am hearing the intricate details that the artists WANT us to hear. It took me a while to find the right bud to fit my ear, but once you do, it fits snug and tight every time. I only have two cons with Westone 3's. One is what many have shared before, the price. However, I did take advantage of a December promotion / incentive and that proved to me that Earphone Solutions hope to keep me long term as a customer (off to a great start). The second is the wrap around ear design for the cord (up, over and to the back of the neck). As I mentioned, I work out often and having the cord positioned around the back of your neck tends to tug a lot against the fit of the headphones in my ear. I have tried many ways to avoid this, but because I wear my music player on an armband, this is annoying. In summary, if you are a first time buyer and wish to purchase a high end in-ear headphone, these are a great start. Just be cognizant of where you will be using them. Pros: 1) Weight 2) Ranges / Overall sound 3) Fit 4) Ear bud accessories Cons: 1) Behind ear / back of neck cord design 2) Carrying case should be more durable / attractive. I ended up buying a seperate case to protect these puppies.
Joe, try wearing your iPod on your waste. It will make a big difference when working out as you will never find the cable in the way. Thanks!
Started out with the UM-1's, after one year and a complete washing machine cycle ( they still worked!). I wanted more, saving up my funds, I decided on the Weston 3's, WoW ! After setting my players equalizer to the "flat" setting, the Weston 3's are amazing, very smooth, tight strong bass and great highs considering my years as a punk rock drummer, leaving me with diminished high frequency hearing...After a break in period these 3's continue to amaze me, out performing my own sound equipment in many ways. Totally in Sound Heaven... Pros: Amazing Smoothness, Fantastic accurate Bass, Excellent Highs, Very accurate imaging...Fantastic Weston design and tough, killer Westone cord and plug... Cons:
After many months of thinking and review reading, I finally decided to invest in the Weston3. Not regret at all! Sound quality is amazing! Depp roundy bass on electronic music, crystal clarity on jazz music! very confortable, I can listen to music for hours with them. Seems pretty tough...but for the price I'm taking particularly attention to them! Before buying this type of earphones, make sure you ask yourself what is the use you have of earphones. These ones are audiophile earphones, I wouldn't use them as iPhone earphones. Enjoy! H Pros: Cons:
What can I say? As a newby audiophile, I was torn between the top Shures and Westones models. And the decision was complicated by whether to choose detachable cables or not after hearing horror stories of poor contacts by detachable cables. But since I treat my stuff with kid gloves, I went with the Westone 3 with fixed cables to save some money (and the Black Friday discount helped enormously in the process). So right now, I am enjoying my lossless rips from my iPhone 4 piped through a Line Out Dock to a Fiio 11 external amplifier to my W3s. This set up is good enough for my untuned ears. Pros: Surprisingly comfortable cables. Cons: No labeling of the test ear sleeves/tips so I couldn't figure out how to order replacements for the one that fit me (turned out to be Compy P tips). Left and right earphones not obvious to the untrained eye; a more obvious way to differentiate them will help (eg different colors or markings).
I bought these as part of my first steps into the world of better sound quality after reading the reviews on here and doing some more research. All i can say is I'm very glad I took those steps! I hope the below helps, though don't expect this to be an expert opinion by any means. I didn't understand 'burn in' before buying these. I noticed a difference in the sound quality over the course of the first week of using these. Maybe I was just getting used to the improvements in sound over my previous headphones but the quality certainly increased over that first week. Sound Quality is fantastic. I listen to a wide range of music (from Roots Manuva through Orbital through Massive Attack through The Wedding Present) and these earphones have helped me to discover nuances in each track I never knew were there. The Westones really benefit from the addition of a DAC and Amp (take advantage of the Fiio while you can, it has made a big difference to my listening enjoyment). I also have the Colorfly C4 and the step up is very noticeable to me. The Westones love the Colorfly as much as I do and bring out every bit of detail in lossless tracks. They can be a bit unforgiving on poorly recorded or sampled music but I see this as a good thing. However, be prepared to re rip all those CDs added into your music collection years ago. Bass is handled exceptionally well. I have experienced no distortion or muddiness in any of the music I have thrown into these. Portishead and Massive Attack are good tests for any system with often soft vocals and booming, distorted bass being a distraction on previous equipment I have owned. Not so with the Westones (particularly through the C4). Vocals are clear and the bass tight, complementing rather than competing with each other. As you may be able to tell, I like these earphones a lot. The only downside I have experienced was the time it took to get the right fit. This is a minor issue and helped me understand how the fit affects the quality of the music. Pros: Details in music are brought out Clarity of vocals and acoustic instruments Neutral impact on sound Tight bass (not 'boomy') Cons: Nothing that would stop me from purchasing them again
I can't offer a comprehensive comparison betweeen these and others. But when I tried these on the other day they were amazing. The W3 don't get marketed as heavily as the "Legendary Shures" but does a excellent job making quality earphones. Pros: Clear Sound Bass Price Point Cons:
I purchased these earphones upon the recommendation of a colleague, never having listened to his. I must say, the quality and range of sounds is something that I have never before experienced. I tried everyone of the different ear pieces and found one that is perfect for me. The added amplifier that came with my earphones enhances the sound immensely. I highly recommend these to any serious music lover. Pros: Wide variety of ear pieces from which to select. Great sound and very comfortable to wear. Cons: Carrying case could be a bit bigger to accomodate all of the wires, amplifier and attachments.
I splurged to upgrade from my Westone 1's, which I loved, but are now relegated to being my spare pair. I received the Westone 3's about a week ago and let them burn in sitting on my desk at work for a few days. I've been listening to them for a few days, but just did a direct comparison with the Westone 1's for the first time. I honestly didn't expect to hear much of a difference; frankly, I'm not sure how good my ears are. I was amazed, however, to hear a noticeable difference in the warmth of the sound. The Westone 3's are much fuller, deeper, richer and warmer than the 1's. I listened to an acoustic live performance by Eric Clapton from the Live at Madison Square Garden album. I'd never really gotten hooked by the album, but I'd never before realized the quality of that recording. I've had similar experiences with other familiar music and I've put my iPod on shuffle to rediscover my music collection. Yes, they're expensive. Too expensive? It depends on your situation. I can attest, however, that there is a real, noticeable difference in sound quality between the 1's and the 3's, and I'm pleased with my decision to splurge. Pros: Sound quality FiiO amplifier is helpful in some listening environments Comfort Flush with ear so I can listen in bed Did I mention sound quality? Cons: Nothing I might need another case to hold the amplifier and related cables
After using the Westone 2 for 2 weeks, i decided to exchange it for the westone 3 because i wanted a little more bass. When i first received it, i was impressed with the packaging, the free amp was very nice. I put them on with the small complies. When i first listened to them, i was disappointed. It did not sound very right, like it sounded different compared to the Westone 2s. (very,very, different) I listened for a few hours to get use to them. The first thing i noticed was the mids were not forward like the westone 2. (which in some songs, the singer my sound like background music) The mids were slightly recessed and not as clear as westone 2(maybe cause of more bass). I then noticed that it had much more bass than the Westone 2. The bass had a lot of weight and sounded heavy and tight, but with impact and not boomy. The bass was definitely the vest part of the Westone 3. The high were to me, quite extended. on some songs, the highs sounded very very sharp and earpiercing. (not airy),(highs are sometimes quite painful) But i found that after a while, you can get use to it and it wont sound as bad. The earphone is nowhere near flat eq. It has a v shaped sound.It has a huge soundstage but i found the separation to be better on the westone 2(maybe cause it lacked bass). Overall, i would definitely recommend this to someone who is not looking for a monitor but something more fun sounding. For those who like to hear the singer's voice stand out, this is not for you.(get shures or westone 2) and for those who like flat eq, this is not for you either. I would also recommend the shure olive tips after you get use to the piercing highs. Pros: -bass (lot of weight to it, and good impact) -not boring! (sound) -price(with discount code) Cons: -highs very sharp(maybe earpiercing) -mids could be more forward -separation not as good as westone 2
I bought these to replace my (broken) Triple.Fi. The Westone is way better, especially on the midrange. It also has more detail and is much more comfortable. The only thing I didn't like is the cable. It is a bit short and looks goofy if you wear it under your chin. If you wear it over your neck, as Westone recommends, the cable tugs a little. Ergonomics could be better - like on the Klipsch X10. No big deal (the W3 is not a nightmare like the Triple.Fi). And the SQ is fantastic. Pros: - sound quality Cons: - cable
First Earphone Solutions did a great job delivering the earphones in only 2 days! Then I was amazed by the sound quality of the Westone 3. More than once I said that the first time I trully listened to music was when I first pluged these earphones! Pros: Great sound quality. Deep bass and amazing response to equalization. It can keep an amazing clarity even sustaining a very deep bass and mid bass. Cons: The silicon tips are useless. Only the Foam ones keep the incredible bass the W3 has to offer. The remote volume control are of a terrible quality.
amazing instrumentals! very good highs and mids, vocals are very good, would you be able to tell me why it said $45 on the box when they were $300, is it so that it ships faster. First review on earphones so keeping it short and sweet. these are amazing but obviously there could be better mid bass, but overall everything was perfect. Comply tips the best fit for me, good dvd too. Pros: detail sound isolation good fit soundstage good value for money on this with discounts! wish I got the free amp now :( tight bass and kicks Cons: the price on the box when they came was $45 so it made me panic! sometimes need to fix the fit but overall a good fit mid bass hump only slightly recessed.
$45 was for insurance. Thanks for the product review.
I use mine almost exclusively on the bus commuting to work. Source is a Sansa Clip+. The Westones offer great sound clarity,good bass, excellent soundstage and reasonable good noise isolation with the right kind of eartips. Pros: Sound clarity, bass, soundstage, transients, "Oomph", weight, wearing comfort Cons: The cord easily gets tangled, needs careful winding.
I've owned the Westone 3 for about 3 weeks now. To cut to the chase, I cannot recommend them enough. They are everything I had hoped they would be and more. I also highly recommend Earphonesolutions. They provide customer service at a level you just can't find anywhere anymore. Before my purchase, they answered all my questions and helped me to finally pick the W3 (I was struggling trying to decide between the IE8, UM3X, and the W3). Now, let me talk some about the W3 and what I like about them. I use them with my Cowon S9, a player I highly recommend. I've always used Cowon players because I love the sound they produce. The music files are FLAC. Before I got the W3 I was listening to MP3 files. With the W3, for the first time I can tell the difference between listening to an MP3 and a FLAC. The W3 are THAT revealing. So I've re-ripped my CDs as FLAC. It's not that the 320 kbps MP3s sound bad, but there is just that extra subtle detail in the highs and lows with FLAC. I primarily listen to film scores, most of which are large orchestras. I also listen to some rock (U2, Joe Satriani, Rush, The Police, and a few others). Previous headphones I've owned and used are the original Bose Triports, Bose Triport OE, Bose Triport IE, Sennheiser PX-100, Sennheiser PX-100 II, Koss Portapro, Sleek Audio SA1, Klipsch S4, and Klipsch Custom 3. They all pale in comparison to the Westone 3. I will say that, as with all IEMs, it took me a while to find the right fit. I don't like any of the included eartips. They either don't seal well, are uncomfortable when they do seal, or muffle the sound. The tips I love to use on them are the medium size Sony hybrids. I had to use the cores from an old set of Complys that I had to get them to fit on the W3. These tips are the best in terms of comfort and sound quality (for me, I know everyone's ears and tastes are different). They seal perfectly, are so comfortable I forget I'm wearing them, and allow the sound to really open up. I'm not sure if it has to do with the larger diameter nozzle opening compared with the tips that Westone includes, but my guess would be probably. The clarity and detail is unbelievable. You really can hear little details that you may have never heard before in your music. The bass is perfect. It is tight and controlled, can hit hard when its in the recording, and can extend so low that it's hard to believe that huge sound is coming from such a tiny device. It really feels like you're standing in a room full of speakers with massive subwoofers. And yet it doesn't muddy up the other frequency ranges of the music at all. If you listen to a lot of music, and if you spend a lot of money on music, you owe it to yourself to invest in a quality set of earphones to listen to that music on. Oh, and the build quality of the W3 is superb. They truly do have the best cable I've ever seen. It's supple, light, doesn't tangle, has no memory effect, feels rugged, and has zero microphonics. The polar opposite are the Klipsch Custom 3 that I own, the cable of which can drive one to madness with its constant kinking and horrible microphonics. So, in quick summary, get yourself a pair of these. Now. You won't regret it. You'll only regret not having bought a pair sooner. Pros: Build Quility is Superb! Outstanding Sound Quality! Perfect Carrying Case! Cons: None of the included eartips work for me.
Exceptional separation with the 3 armatures. Tight fat bass in an overall balanced sound with crisp highs and natural vocals. The Bose phones are muddy and lack clarity in comparison. Haven't tried the Westone 4, but it would have to be tremendous to surpass these wonderful earphones. Truly everyones ears are shaped differently, but with so many eartip options provided, everyone should be able to find a perfect fit. Love having the inline volume control and quality zipped padded case. Primarily used with Sony MP3 player, but sounds completely awesome with my Onkyo CD player - highly reccomended! Pros: Awesome balanced sound, tight fat bass, lots of eartip options provided, inline volume control. Cons: Havent found a thing yet.
The Westone 3 is the best IEMs I have heard to date (this is very subjective as everyone has different sound preferences). They are considered a "fun" kind of IEM and has more bass than many audiophiles would like. However, to me these are exactly the kind of sound I was looking for. Excellent build quality and the cord is one of the best. The shells can be a little large for smaller ears though and I found the nozzle to be a little short for a good seal unless I use the P-Series comply foam tips (included). The soundstage is very wide and you can really hear the 3 drivers going to work. Overall, excellent earphones and service from earphone solutions. I live in Canada and I received my order the day after I ordered them. Pros: Impactful and tight bass V-Shape Sound signature Speed Soundstage Cons: Not a deep enough insertion for perfect seal
I have one main piece of advice. Ditch the ear-tips and get hold of the green/grey shure foam tips - it will make all the difference. I do not like the silicone tips - they hurt my ears. But of the ones that came with the Westone 3 the green silicone ones did sound the most balanced. I found that the included foam tips over-emphasised the bass. Great sounding bass - very clear and I had the ability to pick out all of the elements, not that kind of duff duff base you get one some cheap headphones, but too much for my taste. I guess that given my previous set were the Etymotic ER6i I am used to the lean and mean sound. While I do like a bit more bass than that, I found that the Westone 3 was a bit over the top in the bass for my taste. The bass seemed to dominate and become my focus of attention rather than the sound as a whole. So with the shure tips - what do I think? Amazing - everything just sounds right. Oh so clear, integrated and balanced. Even really bassy recordings like the Neville Brothers. Everything is there - in the right place. I am not sure if I can actually hear the top and bottom end but it is as if, when I listen with the Westones, that the music pokes bits of my soul that makes listening to music so enjoyable. However, it is about the clarity and the separation of the different elements - not that kind of physical bass you have that kicks you in the guts. I have to admit - when I got them I was somewhat disappointed - but now I am stoked. Pros: Great clarity Excellent sound range Enjoyable Great balance - with Shure foam tips Cons: Too much base - with enclosed tips
I purchased these after being very happy with the UM2. I had a little extra cash to spare. Even though the UM2s are still one of my favorite IEMs, and I still use them religiously, the Westone 3s are probably my favorite all-around IEMs (so far). Westone has pretty much mastered the comfort arena in my opinion. I can wear both my UM2s and my W3s for over 8hrs/day, without any discomfort. I use them a lot while studying almost daily @ my local Starbux. In comparison to the UM2s, the W3s sound fuller and the bass is more enriched. However, the UM2s are better built and the cord is tighter wound from base to jack. I suppose this is because the UM2s are made in the USA... Anyhow, I use modified triple-flanged tips on both my UM2 and W3s when I go to the gym (since it helps to fight moister buildup and keep the perspiration away from the inner-electronics), however, when listening in situations that doesn't involve fear of moisture, I use the short comply foam tips. The Westone 3 is definitely the best IEMs I've tried in terms of sound, however, I still get plenty of use of the UM2s. Hearing is believing. And believe me, the (current) price is justified. Pros: Premium sound! Supreme Noise Isolation! Great Bass! Extremely Comfortable! Cons: Cheap (soft) Plastic Casing :( Cord Unwinds by the Earbuds :( They feel fragile in comparison to the Westone UM2 :( (they probably saved money in manufacturing)... They should offer a lifetime guarantee/warranty on these. (They'd sell more if they did).
Bought my Westone 3's on a friends recommendation. He also recommended Earphone Solutions, both have been wise choices.....paul Pros: Noise is not heard, just music, and all of it! Cons: Bud's, no matter who makes them are difficult to put on and remove as opposed to Head Phones
Initially I was apprehensive....for the price were they going to be 4 times better than the Sony earphones I've been using. 4 times better......try 10 times better there's just no comparison. I've been using them for a couple of weeks and I'm stunned at how much of my music I've been missing when using the cheaper earphones Yes, they can be a bit of a pain to get them fitting correctly but once in the clarity and detail is fantastic. Would I recommend.....hell yes....slap your money down and enjoy a whole new world of sound. Pros: Perfect sound without needing to turn the volume up Love the cables.....don't be fooled they may look flimsy but they're not. Cons: It's a bit of learning curve to get them on
Only had them a couple of weeks. Sounds really great! My cheap ZTE Android Blade has no problem driving them - never have max volume any more. But also - the details these buds present also bring out signal noice / bad encoding. Isolation with foam buds is very good. It does take some practice to put in the buds correctly. Not simply in/out. Also the shiny plastic is slippery - not so easy to get a good grip at insert/extract. Pros: Sound clarity & dynamic Isolation Cons: Slippery plastic.
I bought the westone 3 and thought they were very comfortable and that the sound was amazing. Unfortunately the lower part of the wire started coming apart!!I called customer service and told them what happened and that I would like to exchange them for a pair of Shure 535, and they told me that would not be a problem.. I just received my Sure535 and they are not as comfortable as the westone 3, the foam tips are not as deep and is not getting a good seal.. I have to say that the customer service was excellent and I will be buying from them for all my family listening needs... Thanks Mike Pros: Cons:
Have been enjoying Westone 2's for over 3 years with no complaints great sound and all day comfort decided to upgrade to the 3's and very glad I did. Now hearing detail not present or washed out when using the 2's. Sound is warmer overall. Appears there is no burn in time required with the 3's but only expect them to sound better with age Pros: Great sound Exceptional musical detail All day comfort Cons: None
I have had the opportunity to own all 3 and I thought the Westone 3 really stood out as the most versatile of the 3 headphones. The Westone 2 really lacked any bass, the UM3x has a very clinical sound and lacks depth, while the Westone 3 has a much richer, warmer, fuller feel. Yes it probably means you can't listen as long as the bass can be a little overwhelming at times, but its a compromise i am prepared to make to get all the other benefits. Pros: Cons:
these sound terrible....I read All the reviews....one review was correct. The bass is so all powerful....and the midrange is low and resecessed...do not believe the reviews.... things to know...the cable is too short to wear the cable in front...it binds against the throat.also the body is just a little big..hurts the hard parts of the outer ear. these made joni mitchell sound like pat benatar....the tonal quality is all wrong... now I almost threw these away....but i fixed them....I cut the sound tube off half the distance to the tube filter. now bass is tight,not bleeding into midrange...midrange is clear and upfront...and most important,the tone is correct. these still have the other issues... these now play nice with a ipod...lossless ape.ext.... ipod and a fiio E9i,and a portable tv with a sdhc card input. a final thought...if you want bass....buy a phillips iem and save 260 dollars. I have listened to joni mitchell...over my quality home stereo...a lot ...so I know how she sounds. Pros: not much out of the box Cons: tonal quality short cable under chin size and fit ...not quite right...
Dear Robert, Thanks for your feedback. We're glad you "fixed" them :). Perhaps you could email Westone with some suggestions on how to improve the tonal balance. The challenge of course is that everybody listens differently because we all have different "hearing curves". The older we get the more we lose high frequency sounds and there is also the personal taste. The Westone 3 is not designed to be worn with the cables in front. These are designed (like the Shures) to have the cables routed behind the back of the ear towards the back of the head so trying them in front will not work as good. We are sorry you didn't like them and appreciate your feedback. Please let us know if we can help you with anything. Thank you!
These have exceed my expectations from almost every aspect. Sound is tremdous and fit is excellent. Pros: Sound Comfort Cons: Extended warantee (extra year) that was promised from Westone for buying direct was not delivered as promised on web site.
To get the extra 1 year warranty all you need is to register the product and submit with a copy of Earphone Solutions invoice to Westone. You can do that either online or via warranty card.
Hi, I use a modified Musiland MD10 (DAC) with QLS QA550 SDcard .wav player (digital source). I never use cds except to rip to SDcards. The MD10 DAC has a class a headphone amp and is well made. The QLS QA550 is well designed but cheaply made and its main flaw is the simple wall-wart power supply. With this replaced by a laptop power supply mated to an appropriate voltage controller, and about 16 capacitor-choke-capacitor circuits from computer power supplies. Both have been re-shielded internally with all hot parts heatsinked. Some pretty clear, insightful music comes out. These are on a $10 timer set to 45min and I listen when I go to bed, every night. My previous in-ears were Sennheiser cx300 mkII; much cheaper than the Westone 3 and generally considered a two star product. I struggled to choose between the Westone 3 and new 4 as I love mids but you gotta have that sub-bass for the kind of music I mostly listen to (European dance/ progressive electronica). So many people said the W3's have the awesome bass and perfect for my kind of music. Plus in reviews, the low bass was mentioned as being better in the W3 - one reviewer said he'd still go back to the W3 for some kinds of music. That clinched me. I wonder now if I would have preferred the W4. Don't get me wrong, the W3s rock and separate instruments, soundstage and depth brilliantly, and give me many Wow! moments. But I can feel the bass is blooming at mid-low bass at the expense of very low bass. They do go slightly deeper than the Sennheiser; but that low bass is quiet - seems quieter although it might just be in comparison to the higher bass registers. I have to turn the music up to where it nearly hurts to get low bass "feel" then high bass overwhelms and tires. I'm still playing with different tips, unfortunately the ones that sound best to me (not foam) hurt the ears after a while and add to sibilance. All in all, very very good but not as near perfect as I'd hoped, so no 5 stars. I'd give them 4.5 or about 93%. Earphone Solutions offered a great price, a sizable discount and free shipping across the world in a few days - and now I'd never shop elsewhere for cans. THEY get a BIG 5/5 gold stars!!! Simply perfect! Pros: Soundstage, Depth Separation Many tips for different styles /ears Excellent quality Cons: Not really a bargain Lowest sub-bass feels weak to me Mid bass a little overwhelming, may tire
I used to be a person that was happy with stock earphones... but that was when i was about 13 years old and was only interested in cartoons. My first step into higher tier ear-phones was the Bose in-ear line. I soon realized that I had a knack for detail and the Bose earphones with its over powering bass, muddled mids, nonexistent highs and terrible cable/build quality were not delivering. Next I stepped up a couple notches and bought myself the Westone 2. It was love at first sound. The mids and highs are brilliant, the cable and build quality was sturdy and sound ( I wore the W2's everywhere from class to the gym without even a hint of wear and tear), and the bass was there but not if you want a thump in your ear for a nice foray into hip hop/rap/dance but for rock/alternative or any genre in that area, the W2's delivered every time. Now for what I came here to say, the audio greatness that is the Westone 3. I purchased them online and took the over night delivery because I was so excited to listen to them. Personally I find the comply tips give me the best isolation and bass even though I have read that the triple flange and the Shure olives are great for the W3's ( It's all relative so try everything out). I was anxious and scared that I wouldn't get my 350$ worth... but boy, were my fears soon quelled. I listen to every genre out there (EXCEPT COUNTRY.. i don't like tractors) and I mean that truly when I say it and I put the W3's through its pases (All the audio was in FLAC/Apple lossless or 320 KBPS mp3, NOTE: Do try listening some John Mayer or AC/DC lossless on these things .. gives me chills). The highs were crystal clear but not painfully so ( I have read complaints about sibilance in the W3s but I am yet to encounter this). The mids were prominent and consistent even if you turned the volume up. Any instrument on these things , given the audio format/out put device is of good quality, is truly breath taking (Try pianos and electric/acoustic guitar solos... tremendous). The bass is fantastic. It is controlled and sustained. It will take a bow and let the mids and highs take the lead when called for ( example instrumental/vocal solos) but step up and give you a thump when you need it ( hip-hop/dance/techno/dubstep etc etc). Overall what these monitors excel is at balance. They deliver in all ranges and runs perfectly well with your ipod or portable media device. I am by no means an audio professional but a 20 year old, college attending huge music fan. I enjoy nothing more than lying under a tree and listening to some relaxing music may it be from Michael Bublee to Ratatat and/or hitting the gym with some Disturbed or Avenged Sevenfold. If you want a pair of earphones that will service your every music need, the Westone 3 in-ear monitors is what you are looking for. Pros: -Isolation -Amazing highs -Amazing mids -Balanced yet powerful lows -Sound stage -Clarity -Build quality Cons: nothing
Thanks for the great Review Udesh!
I have had some mid priced earphones (shures) and have had some listening time on some "expensive" well reviewed earphones - Monster Coltranes special editions. I am also used to listening to music on a very good - to my ears- home audio system. A well balanced Tube system with Linn espeak speakers. I was not prepared for the level of detail presented by these phones. The sound stage was wide, deep with voices and instruments hung in space. It just seemed so different than what I experienced with other earphones. These were an investment that I don't regret. I travel a lot and can enjoy the music on my macbook pro like never before. Pros: Well made, sounds incredible, comfortable for long listening sessions Cons:
These headphones have incredible sound and when I get them into the right place in my ears I love them. However getting them in the right place takes a lot of effort. Pros: The sound separation is amazing, the quality of the sound is insane! Cons: It's hard to get them seated in your ears and that is a shame since they are very incredible headphones.
Hi Cynthia, Make sure you try the short eartips, that way the earpieces won't be pushed out. Also make sure you are wearing them with the cables going up behind the back of you ear. Thanks for your feedback!
OMG these ears have far exceeded my expectations. I use them in a large stage worship team setting and am able to dial in the perfect mix. First, and most impressive, is that I am able to cut the volume on the Aviom in half because of the power in the Westones. This makes it a much more comfortable experience, especially when playing bass for 3 services in a row. It used to be a painful experience because I had to turn up loud to hear the bass in cheaper buds, and I could only use one in-ear. With the drums kicking at 120+db in the other ear, it was less than ideal. Now, with both ears in, I can pan the instruments from left to right as I like and center the bass for my own "house mix." The clarity and precision of the sound is excellent! The highs are a bit thinner than I would like, but the mids and bass--for a bass player--are right on the money. Using these with my iPod is like hearing music for the first time. Each instrument has it's own presence in space--even underlying/backing instruments that you hadn't even noticed before. Vocal harmonies are each distinguishable voices instead of a single blend. These ears are worth every penny!! Pros: Sound quality, clarity, accuracy Comfort and light weight Cons:
I have used many in-ear headphones (Shure e3c's and UlimateEars SuperFi EB's being the prior two). These Westones have fitted better than the UE's (The UE-EB's were too big and tended to fall out - big head, medium ear canals), and have a much better sound stage than the Shures did. Although I was expecting that they would be less base heavy than the UE-EB's I was pleasantly surprised to find that they did not lack bass response and that I much preferred them as well. Overall I have been exceptionally happy until I intermittently lost the R ear output (almost completely) then the L followed shortly thereafter. Subsequently both ears lost all output. 8-( I have begun the followup for a warranty claim - although at 4 months, I would have hoped not to be doing this for such expensive earphones. The earphones live in a Westone protective container that has silicon beads to absorb any moisture - So they are much more pampered than any of my prior headphones. (The container is fantastic!) Will post to followup the service from Westone .... Pros: Cons:
The Westone 3 are very fun phones. They have tons of bass impact and require very little volume to enjoy their dynamic range. The majority of this bass comes from mid bass and unfortunately it does bleed somewhat into the midrange. It prevents a higher level of clarity and instrument separation that they are fully capable of displaying. If you don't own any other phones that are brighter or clearer, then you may not notice this. It is only after extensive listening that I've come to recognize this trait. Otherwise the midrange is neither recessed or forward and treble is present but not overpowering. Pros: Visceral, fun sound signature Bass impact Comfort and style Cons: Somewhat hazy Detail lost is bass bleed Could use more treble sparkle Vocal can sound too deep
i started to look for a decent pair of earphones after purchasing a 4g ipod touch (previous IEs were sennheisers & beyer dynamics). auditioned for some units in a stereo shop. based on my initial budget of usd80 had the usual popular consumer brands to try. subsequently i was introduced to the Westone 1s. while a little more than my initial budget but found it to be clearer and more balanced. also tested out the westone 3s. decided to purchase Westone 1s as it fits the budget & a great pricing thro earphonesolutions.com. but the tonal balance, musci clarity & bass delivery of the Westone 3s were always lingering whenever i hooked up the Westone 1s. so after 3mths, the temptation was simply too much & overwhelmed my sanity. while the new Westone 4 was just released, i felt the Westone 3 would fit my upgrade budget better & got good advice fr flavio on the suitability of Westone 4s were leaning towards classical music (i auditioned a friend's westone 4 & couldnt agree more). the Westone 3 is probably the best universal fit IEMs i hv ever ever worned or listened to. completely neutral to watever type of music played, always very eager to present any tracks in the most enthusiastic manner & listening experience. bass has fullness and body, not overly blaring. hi-pitch frequencies were presented in a controlled manner and not overbearing. mid-range of female vocals had me virtually feeling, the luscious lips were just gently brushing my ears ... ballads were played and delivered retaining its emotions & rock /rap music were played with continuing enthusiasm, deep heartbeats and a total blood rush !!! well wat more can u ask for for usd 350++. absolute & sheer music ecstacy and musicality-enlightenment together. how is tis possible ? i feel it whenever i hook up my Westone 3s on my ipod as well as my hifi system. thanks flavio, adrianna & team fr earphonesolutions.com again. i will definitely return if another "karma"-fulfilling products becomes available .... tis is my sincere & humble experience from a discreet in-earphones called WESTONE 3. Pros: Cons:
I've had these for about a month now, and as I have or have had many top tier IEM's I think I can give these a pretty fair shake. First off I love Westone's products for their customer service,durable noiseless cables and great resale. I also currently own a pair of their UM3X's so I will attempt to give the pros and cons of these versus the UM3X's for those caught in between. I've owned the UM3X's for nearly two years and if I'm at home or traveling they are generally the pair I reach for, but that may change when I get my customs. They have a really nice presentation and are definitely worth the premium over the UM2. I really like the fact that the UM3/2 can be serviced with the cable being able to be replaced even out of warranty for a relatively low cost. Plus they are American made, putting good people to work here is a plus for me. They also fit my ears better with a slightly deeper insertion than the W series. They simply are more comfortable and fit better. That said, this is a review of the W3 so I will try to steer towards that particular one. As expected from the above statements, these don't fit me quite as well. They fit more shallow, better for smaller ears in general, less intrusive, probably more comfortable for some. They look a little cooler maybe with the black widow paint job, but these are for sound not my coffee table. They could be fluorescent pink for all I care. The W series comes with more "stuff" , eartips, an attenuator, a nicer case etc. The newer removable cable UM series I believe come with a fit kit, mine just had Comply's. Sound- Well I'm not going to use obscure audiophile language, because if you don't speak the language it's meaningless right? The W3's are described as having a "U" shaped sound reproduction graph. That's because the highs and lows sound boosted to some. I guess it all depends on your reference point. The highs are bright, sibilant on some music unfortunately, and the bass can be "boomy" to some. I disagree on the bass, it is more prevalent than some I have used which in my opinion takes away from the mid representation. Depending on your style of music these are either great and revealing or harsh and bloated. I tend to listen to mostly rock in its various incarnations from classic to death/black metal and all shades in between. Rock tends to sound great with a slamming mid-bass and good vocals with a nice extension in to the treble region for the cymbals. These do that. The highs can be slightly harsh for home use. So keep in mind your environment also. At home I prefer the laid back highs (some say rolled off) of the UM3X. In my noisy industrial environment with machinery/conversations/and loud radios, the bass and treble gets overwhelmed by ambient noise, hence my purchase of the W3. It's great for THAT environment and most of my music. The "soundstage" or depth/width of the music representation is better on the W series. To me that makes the music more enjoyable. The 3D effect of instrument placement is simply more engaging than the UM series ( as it is supposed to be the UM is a stage monitor). The W3 sounds more "musical" to me. I guess it all comes down to usage and music preference. I don't think that Westone products are boomy or bass heavy. Some prefer a lighter bass like the Earsonic SM3 (which I think sound like the UM3X with a larger soundstage), or some of the dual/single drivers out there. Grado GR8's sound better and more musical to me than the W3. Less bass, less treble definite focus on creamy mids. BUT no responses from customer service/tend to fall out of my ears/more sound leakage due to shallower fit and a questionable cable. Westone trumps the competition in service, isolation, durability and the ability to be repaired outside of warranty ( except W series). Good people great product despite my left handed compliments, and the best cable on the market. I'm an abnormally heavy user (8-10 hours/day) with toxic body oils that destroy lesser cables. So take my durability comments with a grain of salt all you lighter users out there. Westone cables last me about 1 year, Shure 3-4 months, Sony and the like about a month. These actually make economic sense for me with the warranty. That said Westone will only give you a discount on the W series for a replacement out of warranty ~1/2 of the new price. Wish they were serviceable and is why I am not purchasing the W4's at this point. Not worth it to me at this point die to my 'issues' with the W series. I'm holding out for the UM4. Bought the W3 to bring back the frequencies washed out in my environment. They do that. Perfect for what I need them for, not as good in a quiet environment but then we all hear differently. Hoping Westone will take care of me when repairs are needed out of warranty but I'm comfortable they will and I have backups ! Similar to the UE TF10's but with better bass and mids of that helps Pros: Soundstage Instrument location/separation bass and treble for rock cables Westone service Cons: mids not as realistic as Grado GR8 /Shure 530 Piercing sibilant even painful highs on some tracks, but then I generally prefer less treble. lack of serviceability Some washout of mid representation due to bass UM series fits ME better, results may vary !
I used this ear phone as in ear monitor for our sunday service at church. It works really well, the sound isolation is great as well Pros: Great Sound, easy storage, great outside sound isolation Cons:
Definitely the best I ever had. I'm very happy. Someone described them as having a complete smooth sound and I think that describes them best. For the first time I really notice the difference between the good source material and the not so good as quality reproducers will reveal. Pros: The fit, and the sound. Cons: The wire does seem flimsy but so far no problems.
The best sounding earbuds I've ever experienced. I've owned ie8's, Bose and monster turbine pros copper. The westones blow them all away. Be prepared to be wowed in all frequency ranges. Strong base and great mids and highs. The westons are also some of the most comfortable buds I've tried. I forget their in at times. Pricey but if you Charish your tunes as I do they are worth every penny. My only complaint is that they feel a bit cheap. Wish they had a heftier build like the monsters. I haven't had any issues though and I wear them to the gym etc... Pros: Great fit Superior sound Did I mention how great they sound Cons: Frail feeling Cost
When I first tried the westone3's I wasn't impressed all too much. I tried all the supplied tips and was still wondering what the fuss was all about. I even thought about returning them until I compared them to my other earphones I owned. When I tried my other earphones they sounded tinny and unbalanced from all frequencies. I then put the Westones back on and WOW! They seemed to somehow shine better then when I first tried em. I noticed more detail in all phases of sounds I didn't notice til I tried my other earphones i owned. I guess I didn't realize what I was missing when i first tried em til I compared em to my less detailed monster turbines and ultimate ears 5 pro. The only bad thing about the Westones is I realized how crappy music can sound when I don't use them. Pros: Hearing everything meant to be heard in recorded sound. Cons: Fit issues with the supplied tips Minor discomfort when used for long periods How music can sound when it's a lower quality recording and compression.
Purchased these headphones on sale when the W4's were announced. At first, the fit was quite uncomfortable. Despite trying all of the included tips, my ears would fatigue within 30-50 minutes. I don't know what changed between then and now, but after 2 weeks of regular use it was like night and day. I haven't felt an IEM with a more comfortable fit. Now I can listen to them uninterrupted for as long as I want. As far as the sound quality, you won't be disappointed (assuming you get a proper fit). If you are coming from a standard earbud-type the 25-30db attenuation may take some getting used to, but you will love it when you do. Pros: Sound Quality, Cables, Assortment of tips, Build Quality Cons: Initial fit
I have listened to this headphone with my Cowon J3, iPod, iPhone, and a couple of headphone amps (Naim, etc) and my conclusion is that they are indeed very good, with one major caveat... These headphones are inherently coloured and have a distinct bump in the mid-bass, which tilts the perceived response toward slightly recessed mids and treble. That said, the amount of detail that these headphones are capable of delivering is truly exceptional. Also, their portrayal of bass (albeit slightly exaggerated) is outstanding and has great impact, detail and depth. Mids and treble are coherent, if a bit recessed by comparison, but retain exceptional fluidity, detail and impact. One thing people should be absolutely sure of is finding out which tips fit best and deliver the best sound. I found that experimenting with all the tips revealed certain sonic signatures specific to tips: for example the foam tips reduced the treble while overblowing the bass somewhat, whereas the medium size soft rubber tips has a balance that I much preferred. Overall, great headphones that play music without getting in the way. Whether or not they are worth $350 is perhaps questionable, given the apparently low build quality and fragility... time will tell. Pros: Tiny, block noise, great bass response, great detail Cons: Build quality is questionable (wires feel fragile), slightly exaggerated mid-bass, quite pricey for the apparent quality.
Thanks for the feedback Jake. The Westone cables look fragile but they are actually excellent cables. Thanks again!
I had a Westone UM 2 which lasted me for years and it is durable, now I have just purchased a Westone 3 and the sound it produces is much better than the UM 2 with the additional driver the sound really differs. I have tested the Shure and found that the wires are too wide for sport use as I have been using the UM 2 for sports and it works wonders. Pros: Thin flexible cables. Nice durable casing. Volume controller provided Reasonably priced. Cons: The ear buds frame a bit big compared to UM2. It is not like UM3X which has detachable cable.
I upgraded from a pair or very good Sony's to these... Westone UM3X with detachable cables. The sound is very very clear and concise. Highs, mids and lows seem to balance out very well. I primarily listen to Ambient/Techno/Dance, Techno Rock and some classical from an Ipod Nana and Iphone4. Plugged in my FiiO Headphone Amplifier and the sounds are even better. This small amplifier seems to push the lows a little extra and in my ears the sounds are now perfect. Highly recommend these earphones. Get the money and upgrade, you will not regret it. This combo is excellent. Also recommend the FiiO Amp for any set of headphones. Pros: Sweet smooth evenly balanced lows, mids and highs. Very clear and accurate sound reproduction. Excellent collection of inserts to sample and choose from. Very nice packaging and accessories. Nice carrying case. Very satisfied. Been listening to them non-stop for about 10 hours now and counting. Made a great decision by purchasing these at a great price from Earphone Solutions. Cons: Nothing so far.
Bought it when first came out (after checking all the reviews). First impression was didn't sound that good, didn't have any bass..ipod earbuds was just as good. Put em away and didn't use em for a year. Then one day after thinking about how much money I had spent, decided to really try to use the 3's again. Watched some Westone videos about how to correctly fit and wear them and...Wow! what a difference. You really have to have a good tight fit to get the bass (I found using the triple flange tips with one flange cut off for my right side fits perfect) Also the sound gets better the more you use them (might need a 12 to 24 hour burn in period) Now can't stop wearing em, even at work when have to pull em off to hear when people trying to talk to me...Ha! Pros: Sound is incredible Cons: Trying to find the right fit, but its worth it! Just heard Westone coming out with 4 driver Westone4. Now have to try that one!
I had bought and used it for app. 18 months and one black day suddenly it stopped working. in my opinion it is about a cable problem. I had one year guarantee and it had finished so I wrote the Westone customer service. They told me that cable replacement is 200$ plus cargo and if the problem isn't about cable they can't repair it. Two way Cargo price is app 100$ for me (Turkey). So my westone is in the rubbish box with my tears. But now I bought shure 535, if I compare them; Westone is better for bass but shure is better in middle and lows. Especially westone was in failure about sounds like "s". Also of course cable replacement, iphone controlable extra cable and totally cable quality is shure's other pluses. Pros: bass sounds, triple way Cons: mids and lows you can hear "s" like "t" non replacement cable cable quality customer service -repair options (after guarantee)
When you buy from us your warranty is extended to 2 years when you return the registration card. Please check your paperwork if you purchased from us and if the earphones were registered and we will be glad to help you.
As detailed by others, the sound quality of these earphones is excellent. There is one problem of which owners and prospective buyers should be aware. It is relatively easy to tangle the twisted cables and it seems each time I remove the earphones from the case, I spend a couple of minutes untangling them. While doing this recently, the cable caught one of the ear tips which went flying -- unfortunately into the snow and was lost. In this way I lost the best fitting eartip which can be replaced only by purchasing the entire $28 (including shipping) "fit kit" which would provide me with a 2nd set consisting mainly of ear tips I cannot use. From my perspective, this is a major drawback of these earphones. Pros: Excellent sound. Cons: Very expensive to replace lost or damaged eartips Cables tangle easily.
Send us an email and we will mail some eartips to you :)) Westone is working on packing just that kind of eartips by itself. In the meantime we have packed our own here: http://www.earphonesolutions.com/sieaforweea3.html
Having already owned the Westone UM2, I decided to upgrade to the W3. It's a noticeable, if not substantial improvement. It has good soundstage and excellent detail for an IEM. It is fairly easy to drive and does not need a headphone amp. My only complaints are that it is a bit too bassy which can be easily adjusted if your PMP has EQ settings, and I feel the stems the eartips go on are too short. As a result, I had a hard time getting a good fit with most tips that would otherwise stay in my ears securely. Pros: good soundstage excellent detail Cons: Very bassy ear tip stems are too short a little pricy
I spent a year deciding to spend the 399.00 dollars for the Westone 3's and it was a year spent missing the great sound they provide. They do all that was advertised. It is a simple as that Pros: Clear balanced and complete music and words from the tracks. Better than my "Studio Sony" Headphones. The Westone 3's are, for me, the right fit, size and comfortable over long time in the ear. The sounds are clear and the idea of the three drivers can be heard. Cons: Absolutely nothing.
I bought the Westone-UM2 about 2-3 years ago and thought they were the best earphones i've every used and believe me, I tested quite a few but sceptical of paying so much for these little critters. Now in 2010 after reading many reviews and not getting sick of my UM2, I decided to jump on board the Westone 3's. Does anybody want my UM2 because these westone 3's are simply amazing. Amazing lows and hi hi's and mid mids. Amazing!!!!!! Thats all i can say... Well, Time to go use them :) Pros: Amazing Hi's Amazing LOOOOOOW"s Cons: Nothing.. zilch!!!
I've had these for a couple years now and I can say that they blow the SE535s out of the water. The W3 are by far the most comfortable, sometimes I even fall asleep with them on. The sound quality is outstanding as well. Being a musician and sound engineer, I've had the chance to try the W3 in many situations and they excelled in all of them. Some will say they are somewhat dark (I'm talking about the sound) which they are, but it does not affect the end result in the least, as they offer an exceptional depth in the mids and strong lows, which the SE535s totally lack, and therefore the Shure's end up sounding too brittle. IMO the W3 are well worth the price, plus they are made in the USA! How could you go wrong? Customer service, both at EarphoneSolutions and Westone, is first class, by the way. Pros: The detailing and sound quality is like cream for the ears, you will always return to them and will never go back to your old ear buds. They handle all kinds of music, for there is a natural balance in the frequency range. They are extremely well designed ergonomically and therefore offer unmatched comfort. Comes with a nice little portable case, and everything else you might need. Cons: A little strong in the mids, and missing a bit of air on the top end of the frequency range.
I would consider myself somewhat of an audiophile based on a lifetime of esoteric sound equipment; wanting the best that I could afford during the decades. I can surely attest that unlike other information / digital technologies, sound reproduction has NOT decreased in price as time and advancement in changes increased. I guess what I'm saying is you still get what you pay for. Now, as with most post baby-boomers, I'm in a better position to buy "better" equipment, I can pick and choose what best suits my desires. Enter the W3's. After much research and testing, it came down to a decision between the Shure 535's and the W3's. Without saying too much about the qualities of the Shure's, let me say that my ears much preferred the depth and 3D replication of sound reproduction of the W3's. NO, Westone did not pay me to say this (I wish); fact is, the W3's, although not perfect, are far better than the Shure's. If you like crispy clean high's, with deep, thump & bump lows, you'll love the Westone's - bar none!!! Pros: * Clean, Crisp High's * Distinct, definite superb mid-range vocals and string instruments. * Beautiful, bass; not overwhelming, but "In-Your-Face" bass that was leap years ahead of anything I've heard; the perfect balance that toned down the bass was the strong & effective use of crispy high's. I'm sure the 3-way triple drivers had much to do with that. Cons: * I wasn't pleased with the "flimsy-feel" of the wire or cord; I would have preferred a thicker wire. * It took a little time to get the positioning of the earpiece in place' it felt like I had to put them in upside down with the wire up, placing the wire up and over your ear. Unconventional, but once understood, the soft, memory foam ear-piece creates a tight seal to the inner wall of the ear canal. * I know this is the "dislike" column, but what I posted as negatives really have nothing to do with sound reproduction; they're more little personal annoyances and might not bother you. Buy these, you'll not be disappointed.
Great review Chris. Thanks!
The sound quality is just ok. The craftmanship is muuuuch to be desired in this price range, they are made in china and the cable is low quality it turns white with light twists. DonÂ´t bother buy cheaper ones and also dont bother paying attention to the earphones solutions reviews, they have a HUGE commitment with Westone and it shows, no objectivity at all. Pros: at this price range...nothing Cons: not objective reviews and unjustified price.
Jav, Thanks for your feedback. When it comes to audio, we truly believe that real users have much more to contribute with their own, real life experience than specs and charts which are in fact the most non-objective approach that is. There is no standardized set of parameters when creating these charts and measurements. So instead of assuming an arrogant position and being dismissive of the real world, we choose to be part of it. Our reviews show our personal opinion and we call it like it is: OUR PERSONAL OPINION. And no one can dispute that. You take it for its face value. The charts are just a gimmick that will impress some folks but not most real life users that will use them at the gym, outdoors, when flying, at home, sleeping, running, etc. We trust our customers reviews, feedback and real data collected by us for over 15 years now showing return rate for each and every product we sell. That's a great aggregate measurement that shows satisfaction and defect rate. We now have over 2,000 end user reviews. In reference to the cables, they don't turn white with twists. The cables have white marks so many inches apart so the machine that cuts them can "see" where to cut. That has changed with the last revisions of this product. Westone 3 is assembled in China and then individually tested and packed in Colorado Springs, USA. Almost every product now is made in China and packed in China. Which these days doesn't necessarily mean low quality. The UM1, UM2 and UM3X are still made in the USA. Regardless, everything we promote on our site is of high quality and when something starts to receive too many bad reviews from our customers, the product gets axed. We sell things we would buy ourselves. That's our motto. I understand it can be limiting but we won't be calling a crappy earbud a great thing if in fact they are not. You won't even find them here. Every other month we test a bunch of stuff that is not on the site. And how we test them? We simply use them for a given number of days. We don't measure frequency response and don't publish charts like other companies may choose to do, because in our opinion, they are worthless and actually misrepresent products. They are misleading and false. We prefer to evaluate the earphones and headphones as an end user like everyone we cater to. If we like it, you will see it here. If we don't, you won't. You can read more here about these two approaches of evaluating audio in this article by the famous J. Gordon Holt, audio engineer and the founder of Stereophile magazine: "Subjective audio is the evaluation of reproduced sound quality by ear. It is based on the novel idea that, since audio equipment is made to be listened to, what it sounds like is more important than how it measures. This was a natural outgrowth of the 1950s high-fidelity "revolution," which spawned the notion that a component, and an audio system as a whole, should reproduce what is fed into it, without adding anything to it or subtracting anything from it. Traditional measurements of such things as harmonic distortion, frequency response, and power output can reveal many things a product is doing imperfectly, but there have never been any generally accepted guidelines for equating the measurements with the way they affect the reproduced sound. And there was strong evidence that many of the things people were hearing were not being measured at all." Thanks again for your feedback.
Great Earphones. When properly fitted into your ear, the bass is good, mids and hi's are great too. Takes a couple of times putting them into your ears to get used to getting that good "seal" fit so they work properly. The L & R letters signifying which ear they go in is hard to see in low-lighting, but that is getting nit-picky. You can look at/feel them for 5 seconds and realize which ear they go in. I do have a couple concerns about these however. I've had these earphones now for about 2 years. I have a smaller ear, so even with the small ear tips (both foam and rubber) the earphones got uncomfortable to wear after 40-45 mins. A design flaw I've also noticed is that of the sliding tightener on the cord to tighten/loosen the wire behind your head. I don't know if it is because of the way the cord is, but the tightener to synch up the cord behind your head does not stay in place; never has. Not a problem if you're just sitting around listening to music, but I'm extremely active so this gets annoying. Lastly, if you sweat a lot during exercise (like me), you will find that the earphones get wet easily from trapping the sweat inside your ear. After this happens, they need to left sitting someplace dry for about 2 days to fully dry out before the side that got wet will work again. Otherwise, grab a headband or bandanna to soak up the sweat before it hits your ear. Pros: Great Sound Looks Price comparable to market competitors Cons: Too big for people with small ears Cord tightener doesn't stay in place Traps too much sweat in your ear
Thanks for your review. The cord tightener will stay in place with a little twist. At first mine wouldn't stay in place either but with the twist it worked. For the sweat, you just need to be careful and avoid that the sweat goes inside the nozzle. You may also use this inexpensive accessory, Monitor Saver, which sells for only $9.99 and it's here: http://www.earphonesolutions.com/mosaforallin.html I use them at the gym and haven't had a problem with sweating. If you keep them on during your whole workout it will be very difficult for any sweat to get inside the nozzle. Thanks again for your review!
After comparing the W3 with other top tiers from Monster (turbine pro gold and copper), I prefer this w3 by miles. Bass is very deep though some people might think it as a hump or overblown. The high is sparkling bright with chance of sibilance if not fed by good sources or wrong tips. Overall, I'm very satisfied with the product. I care not of people saying ear monitor should sound this or that, it is about choosing what you like. That is sound that match your style. Pros: Fun sounding Deep bass Sparkly highs Cons: Chance of sibilance
I have been an avid listener of rock/pop and classical music for the last 45 years. Before headphones were available, I would put my head between two speakers to get "closer" to the sound. Then earphones and in-the-ear earphones. The Westone 3 is the ultimate in listening. What a thrill. Using Apple Loss-less on my ipod, I have never heard such clarity, such a....sound signature. And even though I took pleasure in hearing new instruments with great phones such as the Shure SE530 or the Sennheiser HD280pro., the Westone 3 literally takes in all to a new level--"hear it again for the first time". There is such clarity, but also, the "signature", the mix, is perfect. That's why I can listen to "Us and Them" by Pink Floyd, and it not only sounds new, it sounds like THIS IS THE WAY IT SHOULD SOUND!" Every track--this is the way it should sound. For lovers of songs, the price is worth it--the experience is priceless. The Westone 3 is that good. Pros: Cons:
Thanks for the great review Patrick from Nashville :)
I have to admit, I was a bit reluctant to spend this much money on a pair of ear buds, but because I was so happy with my UM1's, I decided to give myself a bit of a gift. They are without question the best I've ever owned. The sound quality, highs, lows, bases, have absolutely no comparison. Others have said that because they are a bit larger than others, the fit is not as good, but for me, the fit is perfect. It's important that you place them in your ears, and then wrap the chord around the ear. I use them for gym workouts, and they are always in place. They came with several accessories for fit, but I prefer the foam fits for the best. I use them daily, and so the foam things need to be replace about every 2-3 months for that good fit, but worth it. Yes, they are expensive, but after two months of using them, I'll never buy any other pair Pros: The most outstanding sound I've ever experienced. The fit for me is perfect with the foam inserts Cons: They are costly, but worth it The foam inserts only last about 2-3 months with daily use.
This may be my 3rd review I canât remember. I wrote a review on this website when the Westone 3âs were brand new back in December 2008. I loved them then and I love them even more today. They are just so great people ask me about them and how much I paid for them. And I tell them $400 followed by and I would not trade them for any other ear bud out there. With all the reviews out there. There are some great ones so read them all. One that is true is that the bass can be muddy on some songs. But let me tell you this doesnât bother me at all. The bass is amazing on these things just amazing. You can really tell that you have 3 different drivers with such low to no distortion even at high volumes. I bump these things and they love taking it. The #1 thing I love about these ear buds is how great they sound. I had a few different ear buds before the Westone 3âs and what I hated was ear fatigue. The 8 kHz treble would always hurt my ears but with minimal EQ work these are a dream. I listen and listen and listen to these buds and just enjoy the sound. Nicely blended, crisp in all frequencyâs and comfortable all together. Also I have had no problems with wires fraying, breaking, or cutting out. I hope this continues for many more years. You would think for $400 they would last forever but we know better. But like I said so fare (2 years) so good. I love them very much and if anything ever happened to them I would buy a new pair unless Westone come out with something even better. When it comes to Ear Buds Westone is the way to go. Pros: Sound, Comfort, Low Ear Fatigue, Long Lasting Durablility. Cons: Would like to see how they could up the treble without increasing ear fatigue. Treble is there but I want to hear every ting and tang.
These headphones truly are worth the cost. I have been looking for good headphones my entire life and my search is over. The sound is the best I've heard from any speaker anywhere. Pros: SOUND, SOUND, SOUND ! Cons: I wish they came with a few more of the medium foam tips but I will just buy more sets.
Bought a set of Shure's from the apple store, returned them, even after discovering what everyone else already knows, that the fit and material of sleeves is a key factor that affects the sound of inner ear monitors more than anything else. Came to Earphone Solutions from a google search, validated that their pricing was extremely competitive, and that it seemed the Westone 3's were the stuff. I am very particular, and still haven't found sleeve nirvana with the included sleeves (though the memory foam ('Comply tip') ones are ridiculously comfortable, they result in slightly 'floppy' base response, I settled on the soft flex sleeve, though fit is not quite right, sound is better balanced across all styles of music. Found the Shure's shrill in the trebles with one sleeve and sloppy in the base with another. Westones are well balanced with any sleeve, but each provides a slightly different emphasis. Imaging MUCH better on the Westones, voices very nicely separated. Trebles 'breathe' nicely without being shrill, but still more clipping than my ear pillows. Only complaint with the Westones is the inability to truly get strong and crisp base response (though this is inseparable from the search for perfect sleeves). For that I turn to my ear pillows. Pros: Great staging, resolution Clear separation of voices Barely perceptible crossover fade Cons: Can't quite get the perfect fit (could be my ear shape) Each sleeve is a compromise of some sort (not limited to Westones) Still not base nirvana
Dear Klaitner, Thanks for the great review. Please make sure you try the Triple Flange sleeves. If the bass is still leaking you are a great candidate for the Shure PA910 Large size. Thank you.
These are very good, although they do take some adjustment. They do seem quite balanced, more so than the Ultimate Ears TripleFis but the bass can be a bit muddy at times. They also require some break-in and definitely grow on you the more you use them. While quite a bit larger than the Westone 1s, they still fit very comfortably in my ears and work very well with the Complytips. Since music sounds so rich through these I find myself turning the volume down quite often, which really allows me to listen more attentively and discover new small details. Pros: Cons:
Wow. I've been listening for about 8-9 hours today as I just got these the other day. They are soooo comfortable, the sound is just excellent well balanced and crystal clear. After reading a lot of the reviews here and deciding for months whether to upgrade from UE 5's and going to W3, UE 10's or Shure530's, I am so happy I picked these. The comfort is a huge upgrade, I can't even tell I have these on, it's like the beautiful sound is built into my head. And the Westone 3's are the Perfect balance of all sounds, rich music and solid base with such clarity. Thanks everyone for the reviews! Pros: Cons:
Thanks Paul from Maryland! We are very glad you're happy. Please don't hesitate to contact us for any help: 1-888-473-9661 or my direct line 1-321-939-0228. Flavio
These earphones are simply incredible. To think one can obtain the sound quality like this, in earphones mind you, is amazing. The sounds are clear, clean and crisp across all field ranges. Instruments come through distinctively, not muddied in a collage of noise as low end earphones provide. Are the Westone 3âs better than other high-end earphones? Sorry, I canât help you there. These are my first high-end earphones. Iâve read many reviews they areâ¦and I do put my research time when it comes to electronics. They answered my question though; will I REALLY hear a significant difference and are they REALLY worth that kind of money? I am telling you they are. I will buy another pair should anything happen to these. You just wonât be disappointed. That said, you still need to keep some perspective on this: First, come on people, they are earphones. Seems some reviewers expect to hear their $10,000 home audio system through them. Some expect bass that will make their bodies shake like their homes and cars do when cranked up. Such expectations I find to be unfair to any company making earphones. As far as I am concerned, when these are placed in your ear correctly; all the sound ranges, including bass, are on the mark. And this applies to different types of music taste as well. Also, donât expect to take a bad source and hear great sound. Low bit rates give low sound quality. I hope this review helps. Pros: Sound Quality Build Quality Accessories Price vs Performance Cons: None - Suggestion to include microphone
well, it's been 15 months of every day all day work use with same pair (no lie! I work out doors in very harsh conditions). I did purchase a second pair as back ups about 4 months ago and they are build a little different than my first pair. The second pair has a more softer pliable cable and slimmer jack, more base and mid range but seem to have a little less balance than the first pair which can cause a little more fatigue for all day use. BUT i use the second pair when I drive my motorcycle because of the bass needed for a better balance with a lot of surrounding noise ie my loud exhaust and wind. One other thing if you are spending $400 on earphones then spend a $100 more on custom ear molds and it will blow your mind! You have not heard these earphones until you have molds, and that applies to ANY earphone! no If's and's or buts. Your bass response will increase 20-50% depending on your current fit, and user comfort buy 100%. Pros: Cons:
Kelly, Thanks for the great review. On a side note, I have found that custom molds is not for everyone. In my case, and some of our other customers, the custom molds reach too far in and end up being less comfortable than the included universal fit ComplyTips. So my advice is to get the earphones and if you are not happy with the sound and comfort, then you can think of spending the extra money on custom molds, but knowing that it may not be the magic bullet and actually work against you. It's just very personal. Thank you!
I'm a casual user who uses my ear buds in perhaps places where most don't, so maybe this review could be helpful for someone out there like me looking for some really good earphones with noise isolation. I use them almost exclusively while using my tractor which is quite loud as you may expect, and without a doubt these are the best buds I've used so far. I've used Shure SE210, SE420, SE530, and lots of other less expensive types and none come close to what the Westone's can do. I replaced a pair of the SE530's with these which I was very pleased with until for some unknown reason the right ear bud quit working properly, so I decided to look and see what else may be available that maybe would compare with them. After reading some of the reviews on this site about how well the Westone's reproduced bass (bass being one of the Shure's weak points for me) I decided to give them a try. So yesterday I receive them and go out and bush hog for over 4 hours solid. First impressions: Excellent fit (stayed in my ears better and no sore spot afterward, and yes I know how to fit them properly), they are even better at blocking the diesel tractor noise(so well in fact that at times I had to look back at the mower to see if it was in gear), the bass is there for the listening even at low levels and no distortion of the highs and mids since I didn't have to turn them up as loud to hear the bass or drown out the tractor noise, and lastly the slick cord works better for me than the sticky rubber surface of the Shures. Only a couple of short comings for me. The highs aren't as high now since there is so much bass coming through, but this is really easy to fix (changed the EQ from latin to rock) and is probably better for me anyway. The other thing is the cord. I like how with the Shure's the in-line volume adjuster is up higher instead of right at the ipod since I keep my ipod in a front pocket. I tried using the extra extension cord I had, but that was just way to much cord hanging around waiting to get hung up on something and it really hurts the ole ears when you rip these things out of your ears! All in all, I gave the Westone 3's 5 stars and would give the Shure SE530's 4 stars. Are any of these things worth the money? Yes, if you use them like I do then they definitely are. These things are truly a pleasure to use and they sound very good, or at least they do to me. Pros: Great fit for me Great at blocking noise Bass-tight and distortion free Comfortable even after hours of wear Cons: Cord-just because of how I use them. Most people wouldn't even notice or care where the volume control is. The highs are just a tad buried by the bass, but I use bass heavy eq settings and will try out some other choices since these produce bass so well! Price-I will keep plucking down the bucks because these things work, but at $400 bucks a pair it gets exspensive to replace them.
Thanks Stephen for the great review!
Great clear sound and solid bass. Keeps outside sound out. Pros: Sound and fit Cons: Nothing, but a lower price would be nice
The Westone 3's are my favorite in-ear monitor set yet. The build quality is superb. The driver units seem very solid and well manufactured, and the braided cable is flexible and doesn't catch on anything. It's very non-microphonic, something hard to come by. I've been using these in NYC with my iPhone - walking around the city and traveling on the subway. I find that the impedance is low enough and the efficiency of the phones is great enough that I only have the volume control up about 30%-40%, even with the surrounding noise at high levels. It's also due to the amazing fit I get with the Comply "Standard" deep fitting foam tips (several varieties come with the 3's - silicone tips, flanges, and three different styles of Comply tips (Standard, Short, and Slim)). The Comply's just work for me, fit extremely comfortable and block out a good amount of noise. So much so that I feel fine wearing them on the loud C train commute (whereas I used to only wear closed back circumaural Sennheisers to achieve similar noise blocking). I probably have yet to truly break in this set, but I will note that the soundstage is just about the best I've ever heard in any in-ear phones. The frequency range seems to me represented fairly flat. Maybe a bump in the low-mids and a slight roll-off of the ultra-highs. These don't appear as deficiencies to me - the sound is pleasing and non-fatiguing. I believe that this is the state of the art for in-ear monitors - I haven't ventured into the realm of customs like the UE11s, but I can't imagine getting it that much better. The only thing I feel lacking is a sense of space that is larger than my head - this however is an effect that I've never been able to achieve with headphones of any variety, only with high fidelity speakers reproducing in a room moving air. I don't expect that effect, but it would be the one thing to make this a perfect 5-star review. That said, I feel the Westone 3 will satisfy the majority of portable music listeners, and the design is so unobtrusive and comfortable that they will continue to have success in the field. Pros: Outstanding fit, noise blocking, solid construction, accurate and satisfying reproduction Cons: Case could be of better quality materials for the price, tips can be expensive and I anticipate going through them at least one pair a month.
Very Nice Pros: Everything Cons: Nothing
I purchased the Westone 3's a couple weeks ago and they just keep getting better ! I read that balanced armature earphones need no period of break in. Out of the box i thought OMG what have i done here.... on many recordings they were spitting sparks with sibilance, the bass was thick and muddy. Where was the creamy smooth midrange I get with my Shures? Overall, I began to think that the Westones , although very good, were simply not "musical " My personal experience tends to side with all the posters that advise many hours of burn-in for optimal output because things are a LOT different now ! The sound is absolutely delicious with all the transparency to let you "see " deep into the mix ( I have Magnepan loudspeakers.... I know all about transparency ) Try the different tips ...all canal earphones are nothing without a good seal. Disregard the posters complaining of poor bass. They commented before they found the right fit. The large grey silicone olives are the only ones that work for me. Everybody's different. And thank-you EarphoneSolutions for the excellent service. You are everything an internet retailer should be ! Pros: Cons:
so ive been deciding on getting very high end IEMs for quite a while. i was sold strictly by marketing by the dr. dre beats headphones not to long ago and to be honest they do sound pretty good. i dj a lot so this review should be helpful for those looking for IEMs for djing. that said, essential to djing is almost exclusively basslines and if the headphones cant produce bass then you're in trouble. the dres obviously did this very well. what i noticed about these IEMs is that the bass response is much tighter then the dres which is EXTREMELY helpful for beatmatching. the mids and highs are far better then the dres as well. i also owned shure se210 which were decent for highs and ok for mids but did not excel at all for lows and sound isolation. that is another outstanding feature of the Westone 3s. the sound isolation is incredible...for me anyways. i use the small foam tips and the fit is FLAWLESS. they do not stick out all and you can sleep with them on. Pros: incredible sound isolation flawless ear fit extremely tight bass response mids and highs are very well balanced. Cons: really nothing, if you want to be stingy then the design of them i guess?...not the coolest looking ear buds but who cares really? maybe cause im used to the dres and they are by far the sickest looking headphones around.
received them in the mail today and have been comparing them to my Shure SE530 and UE triple fi. This is what i gathered so far. Westone 3 has hardest hitting bass out of all these 3 top of line universal IEM. The triple fi has more sparkle in the top end and the bass register can go lower than bot the SE530 and westone 3, but that is not to say that the bass is better than either the shure or westone, IMO a lot of the mid bass has been compromised in the triple fi. I have read that most people say the Westone 3 are suppose to be bright sounding but IMO they sound about just right in this regard, they are nowhere as bright sounding as the triple fi which is a tad too bright and yes I have tried the silicon tips on my westones. The SE530 IMO still has the warmest and smoothest mid, after all that is Shure's signature sound. Bass performance between westone 3 and SE530 are a lot closer than compared to the triple fi. I prefer the harder hitting bass of the Westone 3. The shure can get a bit boomy/muffled sometime if not amped or feeding it a decent amount of power. Over the Westone 3 is my new favourite IEM, the overall sound of the Westone IMO beats both the SE530 and triple fi. I also own several other IEMs such as the Sleek SA6, klipsch X10 and the westone 3 sound is much better than both of those other two earphones. Pros: Hard hitting bass, very detailed. Better than the SE530 in the low end. Smooth and warm mid only second to the SE530. The high end is just about right without being too fatiguing (ie triple fi) to listen to for longer sessions. Cons: The shape of the earpieces. That extra wedge thats present on the inner side gets annoying for me (side thats facing your eye when you wear it). It can get a bit painful for me if wearing for a long period of time. Perhaps I just have a funny ear anatomy. It design and built of it looks cheap next to my shiny gunmetal polished SE530 but that is not to say that they lack in the built quality which is still very very good. Not as comfortable as the UM2, SE530 and klipsch X10 which is by far the most comfortable IEM ever made IMO.
For extra comfort with the Westone 3 you can try pulling the eartip a little bit outwards from the nozzle as that will make the eartip reach farther in without you having to push them too much.
After my SE-530 Shure broke (which I bought from e-bay, unauthorized dealer) and could not be fixed, I had to look for a new earphones that I wish would sound better or at least equivalent to my previous ones And after a long time of reading reviews and comparisons, I decided to buy Westone 3 from Earphone Solutions which seemed very trustworthy authorized dealer. When it arrived (It arrived much faster than I expected ,thanks to the Earphone Solutions,) and I put them on, I was so amazed at how comfortably these earphones fitted in my ears ( even better than my previous SE-530) And in terms of the sound quality, I had to wait like a week or two to recognize the true sound quality of Westone 3. What I mostly like about Westone 3 is that it is capable of transferring highs, mids, and lows in a very clear and natural way, without any bad noise of highs, mids, and lows trying to blend. T hey all sounded nice and very cohesive all together. However, I would not suggest W-3 to a person who likes to hear rock or metal songs that requires great highs,but I would more prefer to people who likes hip hop or R&B which requires good base and lows. Pros: Cons:
Actually the sound is great once you get the fit adjusted and are using the right sleeves. I have a pair of UM2s which fit much better, feel better, and the sound excellent, though a little different than the Westone 3. I like them a lot, but I'm not sure I'd buy them again. If money is an issue, then I'd go for the UM2s over the Westone 3s - but it's a close call. Pros: Sound is very good and I don't notice any fatigue after listening for long periods. Cons: The fit. Not as comfortable as the UM2s. The sound tubes are too short. Choice of tip/sleeve is critical.
I decided to see (hear?!) if there was truly a difference with the Westone 3's true 3-way triple driver technology. Let me start by saying I am NOT an audiophile - I just know what I like. I have previously used the Ultimate Ears Super Fi 5 Pro and the Shure SE530-PTH earphones. I have not been disappointed by either one of them. I still use them both (attached to different music/video devices) and I have no regrets. When I got the Westone 3's, the first thing I noticed was the cables. They were very easy to move around the ears and they were very malleable - a definite plus for those of us who wrap the cables around their player. I didn't get the feeling that I might be doing damage to the cables as I sometimes get with other earphones. Once I got the proper (included) ear-tips on, I decided to hook them up to my Zune HD. Wow! what an experience right off the bat! Songs I had been listening to on other player/earphone combination's sounded even better with the Westone 3's (3's from now on). But was it the Zune HD or the earphone's? The difference in the sound was so magnificent, I had to try the 3's on my iPod Touch 3G, an iRiver Clix2 and an older Sony Walkman. Since I had the same songs on all of the players, the test was easy to perform. I listened to the same song on each player one right after the other (Yeah, I know, I have no life), listening to different styles of music - Oldies (60's, 70's and 80's), Big Band/Swing era, Jazz and Reggae. What I found was that even to my non-audiophile ears, the 3's were the best. The music seemed to be coming from inside my head (insert there is nothing else in there comment) but there was separation of high's low's and mid-range tones so I heard things I hadn't heard before. And the separation was still there and melded in perfectly throughout the entire listening experience. Needless to say, I am completely satisfied with the 3's and if any of my other earphones die, I would definitely replace them with another pair of 3's. And I would purchase them from Earphone Solutions because besides having excellent shipping times (I want my new toys NOW!), I prefer dealing with authorized resellers in case something should go wrong. Pros: Sound is incredible - better than any other earphones I've used. The cables don't get in the way and don't give me the feeling they might break if wrapped around the player. Enough ear-tip choices to get the correct fit. Cons: I could only afford one right now!
Have been using these for 3 weeks. The sound is clear but a little in the background and the bass is not very strong. Listening to both classical & rock music. I have fiddled around with the earphone/eartip position and not had any improvement with the bass - not that I have a very bass-strong sound preference. With the provided comply eartips the earphones are very comfortable and provide very good isolation from other sounds. I bought these in the hope they would be more comfortable than the Shure E4C's I had been using (they are much better) and also have a better sound, or at least a more easily obtainable high quality sound (I am not yet convinced). I have tried the various eartips and sizes and find the Comply tips to be the best for me but still not getting the bass I could get with the E4C's and some fiddling. Pros: Comfort Leads are very flexible and unobtrusive Cons: Little bass
Ian, If you are getting little bass with the Westone 3, you should try the eartips PA910-Large. There is definitely some bass leaking out... Thanks for the review!
These are comfortable and the best sounding earphones I've tried. I also have sennheiser cx-400ii as my best comparison. The westone's are better, but the sennheiser at about $80 are a better bang for your buck. I guess that is the price you pay for the best. Pros: Crisp sound & excellent range for a small package. The cable doesn't knot up like a cheap pair. A wide selection of fitted ear pieces. Cons: Sometimes when excercising the bigger earpiece twists in my ear which will change the sound on this type of earphone. Not a serious problem with this, it's my only complaint other than price.
Hi Matt, Please make sure you route the cables behind the back of your ear, towards the back of your head as shown on our video. That way they should not twist.
the 3's are absolutely fabulous! I am no discerning audiophile, but I own Etymotic ER 4P's, HF 2's Ultimate Ears Super.5i Pros and I must say the 3's take the cake! Yes, I know they have 3 drivers and all, but I have come to the conclusion that while the Etys and UE's do cater to specific types of music, the 3's offer the complete, holistic experience across all genres of music. My recommendation is to go buy them now, or go buy cheap ones and start saving $$$ to get these. You will not be disappointed. Pros: Provide a great experience across all genres. Cons: that I will get addicted to them and will not use my Ety's or UE's that much - Law of diminishing returns......
I have ordered two sets of these in ears for my church band. They absolutely love them! My Bass player and drummers love the punch of the low end and the fact that the highs are still clear! I will be ordering several more of these in the near future! Pros: Size, sound quality, foam tips are comfortable and create great isolation Cons: The L&R symbols on the inside of the ear piece that indicate which ear to place the bud in are practically non existent in low lighting.
I have been using the Kilpsch Image 10 headphones for about a year now. The best, I was told...??? Very comfortable, nice sound reproduction, but poorly made. They last about 4 to 6 months and then the earbuds would start coming off the wires and eventually break, exposing wire and then the drivers go and they are worthless. I call the company they will not do anything about it. They have a year warranty, but say the earphones are not serviceable. So I have 4 pair of useless earphones... So, I have to find something with all the qualities that the Klipsch had, comfort and sound reproduction, but something that was quality built, something that was worth $300 to $500 that would last as well. Well, my answer was found, in a desperate search on the internet, with these Westone Triple Driver Earphones. They sound awesome, and I settle form anything but the very best. I'm nor sure what this "True 3-Way Triple Driver" thing is about... but I hear parts of the music I didn't even know were there. Comfort, bit of a challenge for me... it took about three weeks for me to find the perfect set of ear tips (that came with the earphone kit), but when I found them...I look forward to putting them on. Now they are extremely comfortable and fit like a glove and isolate the ambient sound nicely. I don't feel like they are jammed in my ear canal, nor do I feel they are about to fall out either. BIG ISSUE WITH ME. These headphones show no signs of wear or tear after two months. They are much higher quality than other traditionally built earphones. They are built with strong interlaced wires that come out of each earphone, that are thicker than most single wire earphones, so much so...I don't think I'll be replacing them any time soon. Don't get me wrong, they are not cumbersome, either. The sound reproduction, comfort and stability in the ear, is the best I've seen. Only time will tell about the longevity of the earphones... But thus far...no problems to speak of. You will not be unhappy with your purchase of these and, I am a very discerning customer! Pros: Comfort, sound reproduction, sturdy, you hear "all" the music Cons: the lows could be a little more dramatic, but would probably take way from the mids and highs. The acclimation time to get the perfect fit (but it's certainly worth it...)
I bought westone 3 primary for iphone listening. I love it. The sound is as pure as it get. I don't know how to describe the sound but all I know is when I'm listening to it I can hear instruments and stroke of a guitar I have never able to hear before. My current headphone include Bose quiet comfort 15 ( for travel ) Klipsch s4 ( for casual) Sennheiser cx300 (for casual). Fitting was awkward at first. Please note all my songs are at least 320kps. Caution: Westone 3 will reveal bad recordings. Pros: Sound. Sound. Sound. Cons: Addictive.
How could I spend so much money on a pair of earphones? How could I have waited so long to make up my mind about buying the Westone 3's? As an audiophile and a music nut, I needed earphones that would give me all: clarity, frequency response from top to bottom; no harshness; no boom; sound staging, presence -- I could go on and on. If you are looking for the best, go no further. Spend the money even if you have to lie to your wife or husband about how much they cost -- "those are more expensive than your 160GB ipod". Take the abuse and the questioning. Accept the scornful look on your friend's faces when you tell them how much you spent. Ignore everyone and everything except your ears and what you hear inside your head when you listen to music. These are the best there is. The wonderful people at Earphone Solutions are to be commended for their patience in helping me to make the decision. Everything they said is true. Believe them. When you get the Westone 3 burn them in as advised. Plug them in to your iPod and let it play all day and all night for days. Don't even listen to them or else you will consider sending them back. Like good speakers they need a burn-in period. The wait is worth it. Keep playing with the placement in your ears and with the choice of buds. It is worth the torture of getting used to them. Don't let anyone else listen to them unless they really understand what music and sound are all about. And even then, make sure that they understand that the process of fitting them properly may mean that they will not hear what you hear. But who cares? As long as you are happy - and you will be very happy with the Westone 3's -- they are worth the price; they are worth the burn-in time, and they are worth getting used to. My tastes run from the Baroque to Brasilian music; from opera to Chico Buarque. It all sounds great on the Westone 3. I did not get paid for this review, I just am so happy with my choice of the Westone 3 and the wonderful people at Earphone Solutions that I thought I would share my glee. Howard Pros: Cons:
I owned a Sony MDR EX700SL and liked it very much. Unfortunately, the small cover on the Sony IEM fell off and lost, I went for repair, Sony claimed they were not able to fix it due to the small cover is not available in their spare part list, completely disappointed with Sony poor quality product. Then decided to give a try to W3. WOW, it is different level with MDR EX700SL. The MDR EX700SL sound is clear and nice, but W3 just brings it to another level in all aspects. Very happy with this product. Pros: Very clear sound. Deep bass. I can hear the sound much clearer that hardly be heard by other IEM Cons: If money is not an issue, then none.
I went to Colorado to do some skiing and ice climbing and managed to loose my Shure SE530. After dragging my feet to replace them I finally did with the Westone 3 based on the evaluations and reviews at Earphone Solutions and other web sites. When I first plugged them in I was blown away with the added clarity over the SE530. There has not been one thing I have not liked about them other than the markings for R and L being too small for this aging kid, but was solved with my daughters fingernail polish. Red dot is right, green dot is left. I liked my SE530's but I love!!!!! my Westone 3's. I hate to admit it, but I am glad I lost them. Pros: Cons:
The shipping has been great; right on time and quick. Along with the great quality of the sound as expected from the reviews and company descriptions. Very clear, crisp sounds of all frequencies and no distortions. This is as pure as sound can get from a pair of earphones in my opinion. Pros: Looks, sound, quality! Cons: Hard to get used to wearing at the beginning (this becomes a non-issue as you use it a few times(
Works great. Like the wires to the earphones. Great sounds. Pros: Cons:
I usually don't write reviews but i was compelled to by the great satifaction i get from this marvelous product. I've owned the se530, Qjays,E4cs, the superfi 5pros and many others but these are the best so far.great natural sounding with good highs decent midrange and excellent bass. After one year they sound better than ever. build quality is good no issues in that dept. I use these with my Sony X Walkman with no equalization and wow its like im front row center at a live concert. Worth every penny! Pros: a more dynamic fun sound than the others mentioned. great highs lows and mids great build quality comfortable Cons: isolation not quite as good as some others but still good.
Those earphones are truly great. I have come to like them as much if not more than my Grado SR325i headphones. Compared side-by-side to those, the W3's highs are a little less emphasized (which is OK considering the Grado's are somewhat more pronounced). They are not recessed though and sound truly nice. You get the sound for your money! One thing to note though is that they seemed to sound very so-so when I first took them out of the box. Some say there isn't any break-in to do on those, but either they did have a very short and intense break-in period, or I had a really bad seal (though I thought it was good, being used to the Shure E2C in-ears). I tried all the tips in the following day and settled for the large rubber ones, which give me an incredible amount of bass while keeping the mids and highs intact and clear. Overall, I feel it was a good purchase! I love all my audio stuff now. :) Pros: - Very "musical" and "natural" sound. - Lots of *good* bass. - Very good highs and mids. - Cable quality is great compared to my previous Shure E2C, and it is very pliable. - Highs are less strident than my Grado SR325i but are not recessed either. They sound great. Cons: - Not as comfortable as I hoped, although they are not bad at all after getting used to them for a while. I preferred the shape of my E2C's. - Tips make a lot of difference. I had to use the large rubber ones to get a good seal. On my E2C's the medium rubber ones did the job.
As a devout audiophile, I've tried all the recent top of the lines over the last three years and I really mean all of them. The Westone 3 way clearly brings out the lows, miss, and highs with beautiful balance. Though not noise cancelling, it's much easier to get thru TSA at airports than my over ear Sennheisers. Also, it's remarkably comfortable, enough so that I can fall asleep on a pillow and not feel "bulge". When I ride my bike or motorcycle, they fit nicely inside helmets. You get more than you pay for! Pros: Sound distinction Cons: Nothing so far
I have a pair of Shure SE530 that are starting to fray. I wanted a backup for on the go stuff and while Shure get repaired. I know that these are much cheaper than SE530 and I don't have SE420 to compare with. However, to me, these don't sound near as good as SE530. The high and low ranges aren't there like the SE530. The Westone build quality seems very good and the they make a good backup pair so I would recommend them, but to my ears the SE530 is still the King. Pros: Cons:
Until recently if I wanted to just sit back and listen to music, I used Senheiser DH 600 headphones connected to my Denon AVR playing FLAC files. The Denon provides this feature from USB memory sticks. The problem was that I was tethered to the AVR. MP3 players and earphones were for working out, sitting at the beach, etc.when quality wasn't important. I then found the Cowon D2+ with 16gb + 32SDHC memory, enough for FLAC files and went looking for earphones which could compliment. The people at Earphone Solutions suggested the Westone 3. They were a little more expensive than I wanted, but decided to go ahead and give them a try. Wow, I have discovered another way to really enjoy music. The Westone 3's are everything I was led to believe, and hoped, they would be. The bass is tight, not boomy, the mid range is clean and sharp. And with the bright high end, percusive instruments sizzle (not exactly a technical term). The combination of the CowonD2+ and the Westone 3 compare to my HD600/Denon AVR and in some cases seem to be better. I would highly recommend the Westone 3 for serious listening Pros: Clean, Sharp and Bright sound. Comfortable fit. By far best earphones I've used. Cons: The size of the R and L on the phones is too small for my eyes, a red or white mark would help
Someone broke into my car and stole my UM-1's (I know...stupid). I took the opportunity to upgrade and if I ever find the crook I'll thank him. I play drums in a worship setting with an Aviom system. I can now hear everyone on stage and all of the intricacies they are playing. I didn't realize we had a bass player before the Westone 3. Nice!! Pros: Fit, sound, sturdy cord, carrying case is a nice size. Cons: My daughter plays bass and now wants the Westone 3. Yikes! I can't afford another set right now.
(First, sorry for my English, i'm Spaniard) For clean music maybe are the best option available... natural Bass and perfect highs... but when you play some electric guitars on it, rock, heavy I prefer my UM2 by far... the clarity is awesome on clean sounds it's unnatural on guitar distortions. Pros: - Perfect for clean sounds, new age, jazz, electronic... Cons: - Rock, heavy...
Thanks Nando. That's a great point. The UM series (UM2 and UM3X) are optimized for stage monitoring while the Westone 3 and Westone 2 are optimized for playback with iPods, etc.
I lived with the Westone UM2s for a couple of years, and I honestly didn't think anything could touch them. But after I broke them and shipped them off to Westone for repair, I couldn't stand being without a replacement. I found some 3s at a good price and took the plunge. After about 5 minutes I was relieved that my investment had paid off. Simply superb in sonic quality, detail, super tight and powerful bass, and accuracy (it's like getting a new music collection). Second, extremely comfortable (easy to sleep with). Third, good sound isolation with the multitude of ear fittings that come with the 3s. Lastly, the Westone customer service is second to none. Buy these, you'll be glad you did. Pros: - audio quality - comfort - sound isolation - Westone customer service Cons: - none
The sound is great no question about it. They stay comfortably in my ear. I was worried about having trouble getting a seal to appreciate the bass but it was really easy. After a few times they are easy to put in. Why it's important which one goes in which ear is beyond me but I guess there is a good reason. The little "L" and little "R" are so small and written in the same color so it is a nuisance to read even with glasses on. Small detail. Are they great yes, are they an epiphany...not really. I've never owned another good pair and I wonder are they really that much better than one of the good $125 sets? I wish I could compare. Pros: Great sound quality Quick delivery Completely blocks outside noise. Cons: Expensive I wasn't impressed by the vaunted non tangle wiring.
I just received a pair of Westones 3's as a Xmas gift from my wife (proof of a happy marriage). I have been using Shure E2c's for years with my iPods. The Westone's are a huge improvement. I am now hearing elements of the music that I have heretofore missed. The sound spectrum seems well balanced and suits my tastes. The earphones fit very well and block out most ambient noise. My only complaint is that the volume controller is located too close to the end of the cord. When I use my iPod outside, I have to keep it inside of my coat to prevent the battery from getting too cold. This makes it difficult to access the controller. Pros: Sound quality Fit Materials and construction. Cons: Location of volume controller.
I would say it's the sound presentation is where the Westone 3 really shines,the clarity,clean and warm sound are simply amazing. I pair this earphones with cowon S9 mp3 player which also offers a warm and softer sound and great sound quality, the combination of these really brings out the best I ever gonna get. Overall this earphone performs better and precise more than anything else to my knowledge, other than that it should be good top choice iem in the market. Pros: great sound quality best comfort w/ P series comply flexible cord good design Cons: None
These are the best earphones (IEM) I have ever heard - simply incredible! Yes, they are expensive, but they sound like it! The right seal (experiment with the tips) and once you find "it" - you are in audio nirvana! Everything I have thrown at them (256 bit rate min) sounds absolutely beautiful - Al Dimeola "KIss My Axe" (The Embrace) bone crushing bass - WOW! But these truly do sound great with all music - there is balance here - Bass, midrange, and high end they're all there. Just amazing! Yep, it's a car payment - but if you really enjoy music...well, it's money well spent. One other thing I need to add to my review - I purchased my Westone 3 earphones from Earphone Solutions. This company is outstanding! The products, personnel, and service provided to the customer is superior. My order was processed and shipped at warp speed! These people truly do have "the customer comes first" attitude! Thank you Earphone Solutions for offering people products like the Westone 3 Earphones - What a great product! Pros: Sound incredible! Comfortable fit Quality Product Cons: They ain't cheap-but are worth every penny!
Don't waste your money. These are over hyped!! Shures, Ultimate Ears and others are comparable and cost less. Pros: None Heard much better for alot less Cons: PRICE!!! Sound for the PRICE!!!
i thought this site was unbiased, but after giving my opinion of these, it was never posted. i didn't post a harsh review, just what i though of these honestly. i've tried these on two seperate occassions thinking maybe i didn't get the right fit or what not, but for me, which i clearly stated on my review they didn't post, these didn't sound the best. i stated the triple.fi were the better choice for me. oh well, this company lost a customer Pros: i guess weight of these Cons: cord not good for exercising, sound, value, site seems VERY biased towards these, how can these have a 5 rating when not all the reviews are 5 stars
Dear Will, All our reviews are posted unless they have: 1) Faul language 2) They are "mono-word". For example: "good" or "bad" which we think are pretty much useless for our visitors. So unless your previous review was one of the above, the only other explanation we have is that it was not processed or delayed by the server. The Westone 3 shows 4.5 stars from customers (it should go down now with your 1 star review) and 5 stars from Earphone Solutions' editor. We have 2 cleared marked rating systems: "Our Rating" and "Customer Reviews" and they don't have to agree. For example, we got great fit, comfort and sound with the Westone 3. The UE Triple.fis had over-extended highs in the opinion of the group of reviewers at ES. And some could not keep them in their ears because the nozzle was too wide. When they came out, we actually recommended the UE 5PRO instead because we thought the sound was more balanced. Oh yes, they also cost half the price of the Triple.Fi. So just because it had 3 drivers per earpiece and cost much more than the 5PRO (made by UE as well), we did not rate it higher, but lower. That's how we keep in business since 1995. We tell it like it is. It's the opinion of the group which may differ from anybody. All feedbacks are valuable because there are no 2 human beings alike. So our own review is just as good as the next person. The only difference is that we have many more models to compare against than the average user and we always use the same group of 12 people (4 females and 8 males). Thanks for your review.
By no way am i trashing this company or westone. I've had EXCELLENT service from this company and was impressed by the UM2's. I bought these when they first came out and was not impressed and sold them. For 400 dollars, i figured they were beyond good. i was wrong! I bought another set of these when my triple.fi died and after trying the different tips and finally getting a good seal, i was once again reminded why i was not happy with the first set i had then sold. i tried all many different settings on my ipod and was very disappointed again. i will buy another set of triple.fi's. i don't know whay there is soooo much hatred from this site since they sold them before and they held them in high regards. oh well, for my money, the triple.fi's hands down are a better buy. a big selling plus for me is the replaceable cords. i think it is a better option, since no matter the warranty says or how highly touted the company is, the fact is, if the cord is damaged, it is your fault and you either get stuck with a high repair cost or you just have to buy another set and blow 400+ dollars. Maybe it is just me, but i saw no comfort difference between these and the triple.fi's. Pros: I don't know of any (at least for me) Cons: Price Sound Price
Dear Will from Italy, We apologize for this inconvenience. I personally own both UM2 and Westone 3 and find the Westone 3 quite more open. They sound bolder and brighter. You may well have received a defective product. I do prefer the UM3X for longer periods of listening (8-10 hours mostly during overnight flights) because in these cases they are less fatiguing sound wise. The Westone 3 will shine and sound beautifully but my personal threshold is 3 hours with the Weston3. Please contact us and we will provide you with instructions on getting an exchange. We apologize if your review took too long to be posted but we have just recovered 300+ reviews that were sent to a different folder by mistake. With the "new" reviews being posted now, we will be well over 2,000 customer reviews. Grazzie Mille!
My last review of Westone 3 in 12/08 was short, with a copy of a link to the review on a forum, but the link is wrecked so I'm reposting it in it's entirety. I have no need to update the review from Dec 2008, they still rock! However, as proof that I stand by my original review - I will add that I lost my W3 this summer and at Rocky Mountain Audio Fest October 2009 I listened to the W3 and UM3X again, and I traded my Sennheiser IE8 for a second pair of W3 to replace them. I also have a new set of UM56 custom molded tips on order to use with them. First I am going to share some of my journey through the world of IEM before I move on to discussing the W3 sound. I started off with Shure E2c as my first IEM in Jan 07, and I loved them and used them for listening to music as I would fall asleep every night. I went through the usual upgrades of E3c, then E4c by the time I joined Head-Fi in August 2007. After that came the SE310 and Super.fi 5 Pro, and then SE500 series earphones by September 07. I also ordered Livewires customs about the same time and when they arrived I was thrilled. At that time (09/07) I rated my Livewires customs as being slightly better than the Shure E500/SE530, but I didn't have them with me for my 1st demo of the Westone 3 on 10/3/07 because they were being re-dipped to make the fit tighter. The Livewires presented a clearer picture into the music with more detail and better frequency balance. With the Livewires there was a degree of transparency and realism that the Shure did not offer, although the SE530 had a big soundstage and could come close to the head-stage of the Livewires. When I compared the SE530 directly to the Westone 3 that day, the side by side comparison left no question in my mind that the Westone 3 did EVERYthing much better. My reference or "control" at the time was my Senn HD600 and Ultrasone HFI-700, where I felt the SE530 were like an IEM version of the HD600, and the Denon C700 were like an IEM version of the HFI-700. But neither of those full size headphones were just right either, but that is another journey. The thing I loved about the SE530 the most was the rich mids and powerful bass; but with black foam tips I was losing some highs, and with silicone tips I was losing bass in exchange for a plasticky sounding treble. The yellow foam tips sounded great but were itchy and would wear out in only 1-2 weeks of constant use. While the E500/SE530 fit had been good with any of the tips, the Westone UM-56 tips helped the sound the most and I got to enjoy excellent sound in comfort for a whole week. After I fell asleep with the SE530 and UM-56 tips in my ears, and woke up to find that the sound tube snapped off the left earpiece, it convinced me to move the SE530 into a custom acrylic shell for a better frequency response (success, but a one of a kind and not to be repeated custom after a 4 month effort). That left me with only the C700 as my only decent universal IEM, and my search continued. I bought Altec Lansing IM716 but that didn't do it for me - bass mode was fun but lacked the detail I wanted, and the HD mode had no bass. I took a trip to San Francisco in December 2008 for my dad's funeral and unamped the IM716 were useless on the airplane with my iPod touch. When the Westone 3 were delayed (and the IM716 didn't win me over) I decided to try some Triple.fi 10 pro around Xmas 07, while the SE530 were still out being converted into customs at the time. I found the Triple.fi to be a more refined version of the Denon C700 or HFI-700, and at first I liked them more than anything. But the more I used the Triple.fi the more I realized the sound was colored and they had problems. Within 2 weeks I was trading the Triple.fi plus cash for some Stax headphones. As far as sound signature was concerned, I felt the SE530 had been less "colored" than the Triple.fi 10 Pro which had a boxy acoustic suspension sound, where I felt like I was listening to a small bookshelf speaker trying to do big bass. The Triple.fi also did not feel as refined as my SE530 or HD600 (although they were very good and killed the Super.fi 5 Pro) - nor were they as transparent but instead they sounded more like a tiny high quality speaker next to my ear, rather than opening the window to the real instruments or performance. The second thing I hated about the Triple.fi was the fit - only with a Complys T400 (or T500) foam tip could I get any kind of a reasonable fit and isolation with the Triples. Yet, with the Shure I could get a good fit with black olive foam tips, yellow foam tips, single flange or modded triple flange cut into a bi-flange with shorter stalk, or my Westone UM-56 custom tips. After I got my SE530 customs back in March 2008 (tuned for less bass and better treble), they were sounding very similar to my Livewires and became one of my favorites. While the SE530 customs have maybe 1-2 db less bass than the Livewires and some mild sibilance issues, they had a wider more enveloping soundstage, but otherwise are very similar. So I believe that the stock sound of the SE530 was simply how Shure decided to "tune" them. In addition to my two custom IEM, I'd had the Denon AH-C700 since May 2007 and liked them un-amped out of a 5.5 iPod video or 2G nano which tend to have a softer rolled off sound. But the C700 were like having a "pre-equalized" earphone that didn't quite sound right once plugged into a proper amplifier or upgraded source, and I wanted at least one universal IEM that sounded as good as my full size headphones (Edition 9 then being what I wanted in an IEM). I've always loved the C700 mids but plugged into a portable amp the C700 would become a little edgy or harsh in the highs, and bass would become a little too much, and sometimes a little sloppy with some amps. The C700's bass and treble boost was one of the reasons why I hated the bright yet punchy RSA Tomahawk amp with them, while I previously loved the Tomahawk with stock SE530. That disappointment in the TH prompted me to pick up a second pair of Super.fi 5 Pro, with which I quickly re-discovered why I had sold them in the first place - the midrange suckout and grainy treble made them even worse than the C700 to my ears. I then sold the Super.fi and bought q-JAYS, which at first I was thrilled with because they reminded me a lot of the stock SE530 sound - but over time I came to realize the problem with the q-JAYS was that they "sounded so much like the stock SE530" The highs would seem rolled off and dark if they were inserted deep into the ear canal, so the frequency balance was a little skewed despite the very refined and detailed sound, unless I barely pushed them into my ears. Then a friend loaned me his Sleek SA6 and Klispch Image X10 summer 2008 to add to review, and while I thought the SA6 were just a little bland I fell in love with the Klipsch. I found they had powerful bass like the SE530 with rich warm mids but a better sparkly treble than the SE530 or q-JAYS, yet with no grain to the treble like the C700 or Super.fi 5 Pro. This was all while also maintaining a sense of transparency and realism that I only got from my Livewires and SE530 customs, even though the Klipsch X10 are a more forward sounding headphone. This prompted me to sell the q-JAYS right and Super.fi 5 pro, and buy the Image X10. Over the months I actually used the Klipsch X10 more often than my customs because they could be easily and quickly inserted with one hand, were comfortable, and could be quickly removed when I needed to hear someone talking to me (plus I tend to leave the SE530 customs at home since they cannot be replaced). Another issue I have that makes IEM choices so difficult is living with chronic tinnitus in my right ear, without hearing loss but with a form of "roaring crowd" distortion that plagues me when certain frequencies are enhanced or resonate within my right ear canal. This started after a life-saving course of Vancomycin antibiotic in 2002 which damaged my otic nerve or inner ear. My Freq Show customs (May 08) cause a big problem for me in this area, but the X10 also have just a slight boost in the lower mids where the bass encroaches on the lower-mids just a little, and then I can experience the distortion in my ear (mostly with piano and female vocals). While it is not as bad with the X10 as it is with the Freq Show, it can still interfere with the enjoyment sometimes. Heck, I even have to wear Ety music earplugs for the church worship band (with me on the back row) because of the right ear distortion problem. So one reason I use IEM a lot is so that I can get isolation and listen to music at normal volume levels and avoid the "roaring crowd" distortion (the need for low volume listening is why the Edition 9, D2000 and O2 Mk2 are so good for me). So, until I got the Westone 3 the only universal IEM to come close to my ideal had been the Klipsch Image X10, which I sold within 24 hours after hearing the final production Westone 3 over Thansgiving 2008. I can actually turn up the volume with the W3 and have minimal problems with my right ear not sounding distorted. While I had planned to keep the Klispch and save my pennies to buy a new pair of W3 later, the Westone 3's auditory pleasures left me no choice but to start selling things to be able to keep the W3. After listening to the Westone 3 for an hour and then switching back to the the Klipsch, I actually felt the Klipsch sounded thin and bodyless vs the Westone 3. Once my ears acclimated to the Image X10 for 30 minutes, the Klipsch sounded very good again and made me wonder if I was out of my mind for thinking that they sounded thin and lacked substance. But switching from the X10 back to the Westone 3 again was simply striking, I dare say stunning. The Westone 3 have such a full body and a weighty presence to the sound that they are the one IEM that I have heard that comes anywhere close to the sense of space and power or authority of a full size headphone. It is the same feeling when listening to a piano on my Edition 9 or woodied re-cabled Denon D2000, O2 Mk2 or even balanced HD600 that gives you the sense that the piano is in the same room with you, and takes up floor space and air space. Yes, the size of the soundstage is smaller with the IEM, but the Westone 3 have such bass control, micro-detail and proper decay that the sense of instruments and singers being present in the room is no less substantial. When I switched from the Image to the W3 the sound opened up to a huge space, the bass and weight of the instruments struck me in full and everything sounded so much fuller and more real. A few IEM can offer some out of head soundstage, and that includes the Westone 3, SE530 (stock and customs), Livewires, NE-7M, depodded IM716 - but only the Westone 3 adds such body and substance to the instruments. This is what I have always imagined a UE11Pro must sound like. The W3 bass has great texture, and is very detailed and quick. It has good presence and power at the proper or appropriate levels one expects with the particular music that is being played. If the bass is supposed to be loud in the music then it is loud with the W3, and if it is not then it isn't. In electronic music like Infected Mushroom "B.P. Empire" the bass is pervasive and pounding and beats you mercilessly; while in music like Guinea Pig "Kool Cats" the string bass is tight and crisp, and totally believable with sharp attack and realistic decay. Comparing the Denon C700 bass to the Westone 3 makes the Denon C700 sound positively muddy, while the Klipsch Image X10 have very good bass but still lack the weight and punch of the Westone 3. Typically one does not describe bass in an IEM as "tactile" but these offer the illusion of a very "speaker-like bass response". I have made this same description of the Edition 9 bass response, and it is equally fitting for the Westone 3. This is just as helpful with classical music as with jazz, rock, or electronic, since the hall's resonance is a low deep echo that puts you right there in the audience in the front row (fortunately not on stage). Also, these play easily down to 20Hz with test tones, and don't seem to have any bass peaks or anomalies. The midrange is tonally rich, and a little forward rather than recessed when compared to the Denon C700 and Super.fi 5 Pro, and therefore more engaging. Nonetheless, it does not make the venue sound smaller like some forward sounding headphones like the Grado RS-2. It is also very smooth in the mids, without grain but with good detail. So acoustic guitars are crisp, and electric guitars are crunchy but not boring into your head. You can easily hear a hand thump against the wood of the guitar along with the true tone of the string, and the sound of the fingers scratching against the string sounds right. Listening to violins presents the full range of sound from the low pitched woodiness to the rough draw of the bow across the string. Saxophones have the right balance of low resonant breathiness and higher frequency reediness, while the clackity sounds of the saxophone keys comes from the exact same location as the rest of the instrument - as opposed to sounding like my Stax Lambdas where the noise from the keys almost seems to came from a different point in space. Piano key strikes have all the resonant frequencies reach me at the same time, and don't seem to come at me from different heights like they used to with my old Super.fi 5 Pro and Triple.fi 10 Pro. The weight or thump of the piano keys and pedals can be heard behind the main melody being played, rather than going missing like with my C700. And, the pianos do not have an exaggerated low midrange that can cause my right inner ear resonance problem to surface. Vocals are full and believable, without sounding boxy or boomy. There are no exaggerated low mids to make any vocals sound close mic'd when they are not, while with the Klipsch X10 there is a hint of enhanced low-midrange vocals in Shelby Lynn "Just a Little Lovin'" that make her voice seem more like listening to an amplified voice than a natural one. The highs are smooth and detailed, and crisp with a nice sparkle. On recordings with no sibilance there is none, and it adds nothing. Playing my test CD for sibilance, Diana Krall "Girl in the Other Room", does allow one to tell that the CD is mastered with some sibilance in there, but it doesn't rear it's ugly head and impede the enjoyment of the music like with my Denon C700 or my old HFI-780. The Image X10 also have very nice highs, but with a deep ear canal insertion some of the sparkle can be lost like with the q-JAYS, but the Westone 3 seem to be immune to that effect so far. The Denon C700 highs seem harsh in comparison, and more suited to a soft sounding MP3 player like 1st or 2nd Gen nano or 5.5G iPod video. And, although I don't have stock SE530 anymore, there is no doubt that the Westone 3 have better treble extension which may still be better than my custom tuned SE530 customs. My 46 year old hearing ends at about 16KHz, so take that with a grain of salt. It is my understanding that typical balanced armature drivers have around a 16Khz physical limit anyways. One thing that struck me about the Westone 3 is how it all comes together in the end to make beautiful music - that the low, mid and high frequency ranges all have a cohesive solitary presentation that makes it sound like one single driver, without apparent overlap of the various drivers or gaps between each driver's covered range. With the Super.fi 5 Pro I always felt like I was listening to 2 separate drivers that didn't quite reach the other's limits, with the q-JAYS and SE530 I felt like the high-frequency driver didn't quite match the bass driver's higher efficiency, and with the Triple.fi I felt like there was too much overlap between the bass driver and the midrange driver or that something was doubled up near the upper low-end. The most impressive thing is that this results in a great image and headstage. Music doesn't seem to come from the back of my skull like with many IEM, but rather seems to be centered on my forehead and extends in front of and inside my head, and to each side or even to the outside of each ear sometimes (depending on the recording). Instruments and singers all have a place on the stage, and they are not squished together or fuzzy along the edges. I can almost tell which way the piano is angled on the stage or in the studio by how close or far away the high notes are vs the low notes. The soundstage is not as big or even as 3D as some of my full size circum-aural headphones, but the depth is at least as good as my supra-aural ATH-ESW10JPN which do NOT sound like closed headphones at all. I have tried several different pairs of universal tips with the W3. I had two pair of tips that I previously had tried with the Shure SE530 - the Complys P-series foam tips, and some cut down triple flanges that I took off the smallest flange off the tip and shortened the stalk. I have also tried the stock triple flange and single flange soft grey silicone tips, as well as the T-series Complys and my Westone UM-56 custom fit tips (I don't care for the harder clear plastic tips). The tips do make a difference in sound, but that is a plus in the sense that you can use the tips to tune the Westone 3 to match your amp or source or music. At this point I have to say my favorite tip with the Westone 3 is my Westone UM-56 custom tips, followed by the medium single flange silicone tips. The longer P-series Complys cut a little more treble than I would like, but the detail remains intact and the sound is euphonic and romantic like a Stax O2 Mk2 (not euphoric). The T-Series Complys are better than the P-series, with less high end loss and are closer to the UM-56 and single flange silicone. The modded triple-flange cut to a bi-flange that I liked with the SE530 are not as good with the Westone 3 and cut some of the bass while boosting the treble slightly, and in the process become less romantic or euphonic sounding. The only tip to give me a problem was the stock triple flange, which make the W3 stick out of my ears too far. So I modded another pair of triple flange, but left them as a triple flange and only gave them a shorter stalk, and those sound about as good as the single flange tips with good frequency balance but are not as comfortable as the bi-flange (while sounding much better than the bi-flange). So, I can get great sound out of the W3 with most of the tips that they come with, if I shorten the stalk of the triple flange to pull the W3 closer to my ears, and I can get them to sound even better with my Westone UM-56 custom tips. The Westone 3 sit nice and flush in my ears with the UM56, and they tuck-in 100% better than my SE530 did with the same UM-56 tips. The sound and fit/isolation that I am getting with this IEM/tip combo took away my desire to try some $1200 UE11pro customs. My W3 with EM-56 tips fit flawlessly - not loose or too tight of a seal, and isolation is tremendous. Conclusion: In my case, I can honestly say at this point that the Westone 3 with my Westone UM-56 custom tips are THE BEST universal or custom IEM that I have ever heard for under $800. The frequency balance with the UM-56 tips could not be better, and it is like they were made for each other (they were actually). Simply put, the Westone 3 with my UM-56 custom tips beats them all with a fuller richer and more substantial sound signature that even makes the Image X10 and SE530 seem a little thin by comparison. It's like comparing a Stax O2 Mk2 to a Stax Lambda series headphone; but not dark sounding like an O2, rather I just mean the jump in sound quality and detail and texture and weight. After getting the Stax O2 I sold my Lambda Signature, and likewise after only a few hours with the Westone 3 I sold my Image X10. My next favorite universal IEM is still the Klipsch Image X10, which come very close to doing everything right, but in the end they just can't match the Westone 3 which is in a whole new league all by itself now. I do prefer the Livewires custom IEM over the Image X10, but the Westone 3 has taken it's place as my new #1, as Livewires are displaced to the #2 slot. Pros: Versatility. Can tune the sound with different tips as needed. Full size headphone sound in an IEM. Cons: Sometimes need to try every tip available to get the best sound. Sound changes depending on the tips and how deep you insert them. Sound tube is a little short.
Before the Westone 3's I used to own the Shure SE530's which while were great in their prime, were bested by the warmth and tone of the Westone 3's. They truly are a work of art and have a brilliant stereo spectrum. However I ran into a few problems, my first one was when the earphones arrived there was a defect which produced low distortion in my right earphone when high-bass frequencies were played. That and my cord wore out after a year. Pros: Great stereo spectrum, warm and harmonics are a delight. Cons: Harmonic defect, easily frayed cord that stopped my left earphone working completely. I had to use shure sleeves for comfort, because the Westone sleeves were quite uncomfortable.
I have been a long time user of in-ear earphones. Ever since I tried my first Shure plugs 7 years ago, I could never use anything else without being disappointed. I went from the basic Shure E2, which were flat compared with my next Shure E4's. Then I tried to invest in something better, and tried Ultimate Ears SuperFi, but I was disappointed by the lack of mids, poor fit, little noise isolation and big uncomfortable size. I ended up with the Shure SE530, a true masterpiece, which I enjoyed for over two years. Water damage in one of the plugs made me consider buying new ones, but since there were no new Shure products, I gave a shot a these Westone 3. All I can say is 'wow'. I read somewhere that Westone helped Shure made their in-ears, and I think it might be true, because these are perfection. All the problems from the SE530 are solved here: true 3-way with clearly defined highs, mids and bass, the cable does not make noise when it moves and the foams are very comfortable and better fit. I listen to orchestral music mostly and the experience is comparable to the best over the ear headphones you can buy. Each of the three drivers delivers comfortable in their own range: the bass is precise and powerful, the mids are present and clear, and the highs are clean and defined. Pros: - 3-way drivers deliver best range separation and a layered and precise sound. - Comfortable and noiseless cable - Better memory foams that really take the shape of your ear canal without putting too much preasure. Cons: - No modular cable to enable customization (adding a mike,push to hear, etc)
I have been looking for a good upgrade to my iPod earphones for quite awhile. I started off with the Shure SE110, which had a nice low end but lacked clarity in the higher rangers. I then upgraded to the Etymotic HF5 which has great clarity but insufficient low end for my tastes. After reading countless reviews, I decided to try out the Westone 3. I couldn't be happier with these earphones. Excellent clarity, well rounded low end, they're comfortable, constructed well; I'm having a hard time finding something negative to say about them. The Westone 3s are definitely worth checking out. I can't imagine wanting anything more from earphones. Pros: Great sound quality: clear highs, nice mids, solid lows. Solid build construction. Comfortable. Cons: For my personal tastes, I wish the cord was a little shorter. I wear my iPod on a lanyard during my workday and the cord sometimes gets a little unruly to manage. Nothing a cheap cord winder can't fix!
I bought these very expensive earphones based on Earphones Solutions "Best Earphones". Who ever is doing the testing over there needs a hearing test. The word "muffled" would explain these perfectly, and this is coming from someone who owns several Grado headphones. I also have Etymotics E6's which sound better than these at a fraction of the cost. I feel completely ripped off. Buyer beware with Westone! Pros: Cons:
Hi Chet, I do most of the auditions... :) Plus another 11 "guests" that vote on the rankings. It could be a defective product or if you push the eartips too far in, the foam opening might close which would make the earphones sound muffled. The other thing to do is check inside the nozzle for any plastic debris.
WellI just got my earphones and was thrilled that they lived up to the hype and marketing , I love listening to Eric Clapton the Rainbow Concert ,and this is coming through so clear hi and lows and the feeling is euphoric . Comfortable and I can recommend these to any one obsessed with QUALITY. Pros: All Good Cons: I have none its a miracle this small package gives what it does .
Over the last few years I've spent a small fortune on Shure headphones, culminating in the SE530-PTH, but due to the extremely poor build quality, finally hit a wall of utter frustration and decided to give the Westone 3 a shot. As other reviewers have pointed out, the lows on these earpods are astounding. I have re-heard bass on tracks which the SE530's seem to have ignored. It's heart-pumpingly clear, vibrant and addictive sound reproduction that comes out of the Westones. The highs may not be quite as crystal clear as some may desire, but whether or not this matters to you depends a lot on your type of music. For me, these hit the sweet spot. They're incredibly light, and with the Comply foam tips, incredibly comfortable. I actually look forward to having an excuse to use my iPod now for extended periods of time! The only serious concern I have is over the cable. The L-plug is a bit of a nuisance with an iPod as it forces an orientation in your pocket which adds additional stress on the cable, and the cable itself is extremely thin. I'm hoping that's not a sign of fragility, but I already find myself becoming a bit paranoid that the longevity of these earpods may be limited only by their cabling... Overall, amazing sound, extremely comfortable and the best earpods I've used to-date! Pros: Sound quality Lightness Comfort Did I mention sound quality? Cons: L-plug Wires seem a bit thin Cable length, needs a few more centimetres...
Well I have to write the review again I think is because I forgot to title it but it wasn't in the page and I believe is important...he Chord has small rubber points in several parts like the ones found in a new tire which speaks of the lack of detail attention, furthermore at the second chord end the one that goes to your ears the chord gets WHITE at the slightest twist, got you thinking of the durability of the cable mine almost new is marked in several points.. I live in Mexico City so practically I'm just hoping they don't fail on me pretty soon. I have used them 20 hours or so.So I treat them like fragile feathers. I will gladly submit photos if someone asked. I wonder if this would happen if made in the US. Pros: good sound not excellent. Cons: The CHORD GETS WHITE AT THE SLIGHTEST TWIST.
Javs, thanks for the opportunity to explain this. Those white marks are part of the wire which marks every 1 foot of the cable so if you were to unwind them you would see that those marks are exactly the same distance between each other. It's just to facilitate the cutting process at the factory. It is not sign of any wearing off but rather a mark for the machine to "see" where to cut the wires after so many feet pass through. So nothing to worry there :))
Possibly a niche review. I bought these to protect me from neighbor wrath. I have used them for a couple of weeks for classical music. I am comparing them to my front pair of speakers (Klipsch SF-2) using my Onkyo 989 and both CDs and FM Stereo radio. Sound Quality: Excellent within the specified range. Compared to my Klipsch, the Westone3s don't quiet reach the tinkley highest notes or the lowest notes, but within the range, the sound is on par with my external speakers. The violin in violin concertos sounds so pure it almost hurts. Pianos do great except as you near the ends of the keyboard. Very impressive. Ear Tips: As previous reviews have said, a good seal is *essential* to sound quality, as is the signal source (for me, radio without hiss). I am quite sensitive to anything pressing on me (I use a pocket watch because of the wristband). While the large size grey foam ear tips made an excellent seal, the pressure got to me in 10 minutes, and the medium size was too small to make a seal. I ended up with the triple flange, but they stuck out too far, and I felt it too deep in the ear. First I tried snipping half of the post; helped the phone to sit properly just outside the ear, but I also had to snip the third flange, and then the phone would set a little to far in. Ordered the 3-pair box of triple flange, cut off the third flange and a tiny bit of the post, and voila! Great Fit, Less Filling! Learning Curve: After I achieved a good ear tip setting, I noticed after a week that sound quality seemed to improve. Trained as a psychologist, I noticed (probably) it was not the earphones breaking in but rather my brain was adjusting to the sound. You have to learn how to listen to sound all over again, because without all that air between the sound source and the ear, the sound quality changes a lot. I also have noticed that, while at first I was not able to achieve a good seal with either the soft black tips or the slightly less soft milky-white tips, while I was waiting for my box of triple flange tips, I was able to reach a good seal with the soft milky-white tips (large size). I suspect there is also a learning curve in actually getting the phones in place in the ear. Pros: Excellent sound quality within it's specified range...not quite the highs and lows of a good pair of floor speakers, but within range: Excellent and comparable to my speakers in stereo mode. Several tip options are available as well as customs for a price. The reviews you all have read! They offered essential preparation for me. Cons: I Wanted tip sizes between medium and large. Insertion into ear - still about half the time they pop out of my fingers before I can get them into the ear. Product description on how to insert was not nearly detailed enough; I'm still not sure I'm doing it the 'recommended' way.
I really enjoy the sound and comfort that the Westone 3 earphones provide. I can hear vocals that were missing in mid-range Shure and Ultimate Ears earphones. The bass is pronounced, but nears distortion when my iPod is at full volume. This is not apparent when I connect the Westone 3's to my laptop, so this leads me to believe that a dedicated amp is best when playing these earphones with an iPod. Although, that is only for bass heavy tracks in my opinion. Pros: Quality build, excellent cord that isn't tangled easily, superb sound, comfortable for long periods Cons: Expensive, could be a tad more efficient
I own the whole gambit of IEMs including the Shure E3c, E5c, E500, UE Triple Fi 10 Pros, as well as the Westone UM2. Needless to say I was expecting quite a lot from the 3s. When the infamous production delay happened (possibly moving production to China?), I inquired to Westone about it and asked that since they already had a 3-way custom model, why not simply take those drivers and house them in a universal-fit mold. They replied that a certain range in the mids had been boosted in said customs (the ES-3 I believe) expressly for professional use and that they were in the process of balancing these for use by "audiophiles". This midrange frequency that was cut down is, I strongly suspect, the same range which the Shures are famous for in their sound signature. My suspicion is that if they would've taken my suggestion, their product, with its superior bass and treble response, would've actually started to take some of Shure's market share away from them. And since Shure had apparently assisted Westone in developing their original over-the-ear earpieces, they didn't want to step on the bigger company's toes, probably for fear of some kind of leveraged buy-out. You don't want to make a product too perfect these days or you won't be in business very long!! Pros: Superior fit, bass response Cons: Seemingly intentional virtual elimination of midrange, much too sibilant for dialogue, absolutely needs heavy sound equalization (which distorts the Shures, not these).
"And since Shure had apparently assisted Westone in developing their original over-the-ear earpieces" Actually it would have been the other way around. Westone is completing 50 years in the "in-ear" business, while Shure is over 80 years in the microphone business but only 14 in the "in-ear". Most industry insiders state that Westone would have helped develop the first Shure in-ear earphones in the early nineties: the E1, and then the first dual driver E5. Regardless they are both great and reputable companies.
Sound is just amazing. Every music gender blows me away. I hear to any kind of music and they deliver the best sound I've heard. They fit perfectly. I had the Triple Fi's, and I had a very hard time finding the perfect fit. My ears hurt just remembering. With these babies, I don't worry any more. Pros: Cons:
I've had the SE530s for 2 yrs. and the Westone 3s for almost a month. I enjoy both systems but have to say IMO the overall clarity and distinct separation of vocals and instrumentals the Westone 3 offers has won me over. Chris Botti & Sting,John Mayer, and K. T. Tunstall all sound Live to me. Sound Isolation is definitely the way to go with airline travel and your ears don't get hot . I use the 3s exclusively when I want to be carried away by the music. Westone 3s are IMO the best personal sound system for my $$$$$$. Thanks Westone and Earphone Solutions. Pros: Great cables, Great sound, Great fit. Cons: Still Searching
I bought the W3 to replace a Shure E4 set that the cord went bad on me. I had a long drive ahead of me and was looking forward to seeing how these did with road noise. My first listen was to Daft Punk Alive 2007. No problems hearing the bass over the hum of the tires. The sound stage was very full. I followed that with Bruce Hornsby and then with Puccini's La Boheme. The sound was good throughout. In some places the bass was a bit too present, but that may have been my ears not used to hearing it. Great earbuds; I'm looking forward to many hours of enjoyment. Pros: Great sound, good isolation, blocks external noise extremely well. Cons: Possible con: The cords are very thin. I'm hoping they don't break inside and start shorting out. We'll see.
The cables look thiner but they are all wire and the most durable among all the models we sell :)
westone 3 ï¿½n sesi kesinlikle harika shure se530 bile yanï¿½na yaklaï¿½amaz westone 3 kesin kusursuz Pros: Cons: kablosu biraz uzun suhure gibi 2 parï¿½a olsaydï¿½ daha gï¿½zel olurdu
I no longer find myself stressing over earbuds, comfort, and possible compromising of music with my Shure. Westone has paved the way for my audiophile falanderings. Pros: Cons:
I'm involved in music since 40 years and have never ever encountered a product that impressed me more than the Westone 3 earphones. Even my phenomenal Kharma CRM 3.2 FE speakers, TAS speaker of the year, did not surprise me more than the W3. Even out of the box, connected to an ordinary iPod, the experience has to be lived since you would not believe the musical qualities of the Westone 3. A true musical bargain! Pros: Sound - Fit - Comfort - Quality Cons: None
Best earphones I have ever had. I've owned 3 other pair, more in the mid-price range. These are worth the extra dollars. Earphone Solutions got these shipped to me very quickly and in perfect condition. Pros: Fantastic sound. I'm hearing things I never knew were on my ipod. Good fit and comfortable. Cons: None for me.
This is the best USD I spend in earphones. Pros: pure sound Cons:
I highly recommend these earphones. They deliver clear and concise sound even when driving or riding my Harley (with a full face helmet). If the price is within your range, they are worth it. Pros: Great sound. Cons: Little bead that slides up the cord to help keep them in place slips back down when you move your head.
Hi Tom, the trick with the sliding sleeve is to give it a twist once you reach the point where you want it to stay.
I exchanged a pair of Shure 420's for the Westone 3's. The Shure's were really great, but still seemed small on sound. Westone 3 is the only IEM I have heard that compares to my home tube system (30k). If you have the space on your iPod def. sync your CD's in AIFF or Wav. These IEM's will reveal the limitations of a 128k recording.. Pros: Cons:
The Westone 3s are very good. They are fair and accurate, clean and detailed. They are comfortable to wear and appear to be well-built. I'm glad the included volume control can be disconnected, as I prefer not to use it. My only real comparison is my old Etymotic ER6i's, which are of course a far cheaper, single-driver earphone. The Westone 3's are in a different league, as you'd expect. As a sound designer, I spend a lot of time wearing headphones, and I'm pretty sure I know what I'm hearing. What I'm hearing is great. However, my old Etymotics are a better seal for my ears than the Westones, and exclude outside noise much more efficiently. Here's the main thing: the Westone 3's are disappointing in the bass department. I had hoped, at this cost, and with three drivers, that I could expect something pretty wonderful. But the bass is only just there. There doesn't seem to be an issue with extension, by which I mean that the lowest notes are reproduced, but the level is far too low in the mix for the bass to properly contribute. I have listened extensively to rock, pop, jazz and classical. So, four stars, not five. Pros: Cons:
The W3 earphones have great sound and are perhaps the most comfortable I've ever used. No microphonic noise from cord movement and very light weight. Pros: Cons:
Excellent earphones. I had an old SHURE E5c set, which I love(d). I have misplaced these, and have not had a head to head comparison to these earphones, but I am sure that these Westone 3s are better. Excellent clarity, soundstage, even bass is great. With higher quality recordings-lossless AAC or 256k mp3 you can hear much more. I highly recommend these earphones. Once you listen to these it is hard to go back to anything else. Phones used with ipod nano and ipod classic120Gb. Pros: Cons:
These earphones truly do have a superior sound. However, the largest size ear foams do not fit enough to block out the noise in the area around me. I had an inexpensive pair of Koss earphones that had a larger foam ear fit and I loved the soundproof in the gym. Now I hear the gym music and clanking of bars. I really do not want to spend the several hundred dollars more for the custom fit earpiece, especially after spending so much for the actual headphones. I wish they would have at least included a size equal to the standard quiet earplugs they sell in drug stores. Pros: Cons:
I was surprised to lean that Westone very quietly has moved manufacturing to China (at least for the Westone 3 model). They declined to respond to my inquiry as to why, which is unfortunate. At any rate, if you cared about this -- now you can know without having to buy (and return) a pair. Pros: Cons:
I got this product quite fast and was able to fly with them within a week of ordering. Pros: Cons:
I have been using my W3's, combined with the UM56 inner canal sleeves for about 3 weeks now, and all I can say is "WOW". I started off using the w3âs a few months back with the included sleeves, and felt something lacking, even a bit disappointed. In my discussion with Flavio about this, he suggested I try the UM56's. THANK YOU Flavoi! It took a few tries with the UM56's, but when those sleeves slide into that "second bend" in the ear canal, all I can compare it with is it's like going from standard TV to HiDef. Stunning sound. It is no longer a matter of left and right but a complete and totally consuming sound field. Close your eyes and you are âinâ the music. I feel totally emerged, be it classical, rock, jazz, trance/dance, anything sounds so pure and full. Especially with âLiveâ music, the resonance and ambiance is spectacular. The highs, lows and in-betweens sound just great, so clean and distinctive, especially on low volumes, where it sounds even better. I have also experimented with and have found music recorded in the 192kbps range and higher do indeed have a distinctly better quality for that âfull soundâ reproduction. In summary, these are spectacular ear phones for anyone expecting high quality music reproduction and will settle for no less. These are âITâ. Sorry for lack of technical jargon, I am merely a music lover, and these are my ultimate end. No need to look further. The combination of the W3âs and UM56âs is the way to go, hands down. Thanks to the folks at Earphones Solutions, Flavio & Adriana, for turning me on to these, and thanks to Dale Douglass @ Westone for the help with the UM56âs. The journey has only begun and it has been spectacular Robbie Meyer Chandler AZ Pros: Cons:
I'm a drummer who always looking for better sound for my music whenever i do performance, itried so many different in ear monitor start from cheapest (OSP) to super expensive (shure SCL5) and i got custom dual driver from hearyourself also ($300). Those are sound nice for me but when i first tried this earpiece, i love it so much (i think this much better than the other earphone i owned). For $399 it's worth for best quality and performance. My drum kit sounded really natural and soft also made me enjoy the music that i play. High, mid, & low mix verry well (*****). One think that i'm wondering why they are assembling in China instead of USA ? But Overal is good and perfect Andre Pros: Cons:
Before I heard about the Westone 3s, I read numerous reviews and tried a pair of Shure SE 530s. In short, I was terribly disappointed. The sound was incredibly bright and harsh. I mostly listen to classical music - piano, chamber, choral and some opera - and was looking for an earphone that captured the warmth of the music, especially the strings. With the Shures, the strings sounded thin and reedy, and the piano had a "plinky" sound in the high notes and hardly any bass. I wouldn't say the Westone 3s are perfect but the difference between the two is certainly substantial with the Westones providing much of the "warmth" and "natural" sound I was looking for. They also fit well - in my ears anyway - and the noise cancellation is very good. So, all in all I'm a satisfied customer. Excellent work Westone. Pros: Cons:
These sound distinctly better thamn my UM-2s with the same great fit. I still prefer the black foam sleeves as the grey ones poke my ear. Pros: Cons:
Ordered my UM3s to replace a set of Shure SE530s that I misplaced last year (gasp). I tried them out first with the foam tips and was underwhelmed because of the lack of treble. I have since switched to the soft rubber "black olive" tips which I have been using for the past couple weeks. I now find the UM3's to be highly satisfying. They have incredible transparency and a more open soundstage than the SE530s. They have tight and solid bass. I am quite happy with my (admittedly large) investment. Pros: Cons:
First a little background... I'm in my mid-fifties and although I am by no means a true audiophile, I have owned a number of headphones, earphones and other equipment through the years. Hearing damage to the left ear some years ago ruined the headphone listening experience for me however. It nearly killed me when I put my Stax phones up for sale on eBay but listening to them was by that point only depressing. I received an iPod as a gift about two years ago and although I played briefly with the earphones, I used it mainly as a music source for long work related car trips until discovering the open source firmware replacement Rockbox about a year ago. Its crossfeed feature has all but eliminated the discomfort and one-sidedness that the headphone/earphone experience had become. So much so, that last summer I purchased a set of Shure SE110s as an upgrade to the Apple buds; and those, with the crossfeed, really got me back into the fun of it again. I decided a month or so ago that an upgrade may be in order and started reading the online reviews of various headphones and earphones. Because I would be using the iPod as the primary source, whatever purchased would need to be portable. Lightweight, open air phones would be desirable but being as I also sometimes like to listen to music while in bed, the sound leakage could be a problem. That narrowed the choice to another set of earphones / IEMs. I liked the SE110s; so as an upgrade, the SE530s, were tops on my list. I figured that they probably had a similar sound signature. I also found out about and became interested in the Westone 3s. Its sound signature sounded as though it would be even more to my liking, so I decided to take the gamble. I must now tell you that when I first listened to these phones that I was severely disappointed. These things had a high end that was so hot that it sizzled. It sounded as though Van Morrison was spitting in my ears. Cymbals were not smooth but instead grainy. No combination of settings, including everything turned off, changed this much except shelving the high end from 6kHz up by at least 3 decibels. I was disappointed enough to even get online and check out the return policy of Earphone Solutions. Not wanting to be rash and since I had a little while, I decided to see if a âbreaking inâ would help. I left the Westones plugged into a constantly playing radio for several days and much to my relief, the next listening session was incredible. I had to check the EQ settings more than once to make sure that I had turned off the high shelf of Rockbox's equalizer. I'm not informed enough to say that the âbreak inâ is what changed these 'phones from âglass cuttersâ to awesome, but who knows? It's also entirely possible that acclimation to the local climate has as much, if not more, to do with it. By that I mean that Earphone Solutions is located in Florida, warm and humid. These 'phones made the trip from there to Pennsylvania in early March, to a colder and much, much drier climate. Many homes in the Northeastern United States use a forced air heating system and it's worth noting that without any humidification going on, which I do not have, the indoor humidity levels are lower than that of a desert. Lord only knows what else they went through on their journey here. I can see that it could be possible that it took a few days for the tiny drivers to get adjusted to that. It comes down to this... I'm glad that I didn't write the Westone 3s off because I would now be missing something special. Perhaps Earphone Solutions or Westone should make note of this. I can say at this point that I am totally satisfied with the Westones. Through the years I've found that there are certain pieces of gear that I have owned that I learned I could trust to always give me an enjoyable listening experience. When listening to them, I wouldn't be thinking about how much better things might sound with something else. As I write this, I am fondly recalling the Denon DL-103 phono cartridge, the Marshall Leach head amp and the Stax headphones. The Westone 3s have now joined that list. Other observations about these 'phones: With the SE110s, rarely did a listening session exceed more than 45 minutes. Listening fatigue would set in and I had to get them out of my ears. With the Westone 3s, I have now had several sessions go more than 3 hours. I would have kept going too if I didn't have to stop listening for other reasons. They really do reveal details in music that I never noticed before. I've actually caught lyrics that previously were too muddy/murky to discern. With the increased bass of their sound signature and their incredible detail, I don't find myself with the volume as loud as before. Their imaging is noticeably different than that of the 110s and my favorite crossfeed settings did not have the same effect. I had been using a combination of Rockbox crossfeed and custom channel separation settings with the Shures that not only got the sound out of my ears but also gave me a distinctive center channel that was moved well out in front. With the Westones, these settings did not yield the same result. Vocals and instruments weren't as focused and the center was pulled back even with the rest of the music. After experimentation, I am currently using a combination of the default Rockbox crossfeed settings plus a biophonic EQ curve suggested by binaural recordist Ron Cole (easy to do with the parametric EQ). Oh.... My.... Gawd. I now enjoy a panorama of sound, evenly spread out, with vocals and musical instruments distinctly focused, all with the gorgeous detail revealed by the Westones. What must these things sound like to people with perfectly fine hearing and without the need to use this sound processing? I'm somewhat envious. A couple of minor suggestions: I could use a 3 to 6 more inches of cable in the 'Y' area beyond the point where the cable splits. I don't have a small head and like to run the cable over the ears and down the front of my body. As they are; the cables, if run this way, are snug against my neck and besides bugging me, seem to pick up jaw muscle noise and my heartbeat, probably from touching the area near one or both jugulars. I know they suggest running the cables behind my head but I really don't care for that, especially while lying down. As I mentioned before, I like to listen to these while in bed. I've wondered about this before with other phones too, including the Shures... but does Sony have some sort of patent on the little bump or raised dot that they always seem to put on the left earpiece of all their sets? When in the dark, finding the proper left and right orientation with this is practically instantaneous. Yes, I know that the Westones have a little 'L' and 'R' on the earpieces. You try and feel which-is-which in the dark. I know that with a little bit of fondling I can find which earpiece goes to which ear but something like one of those Sony bumps would make it much quicker. That gives me an idea... maybe some super glue and a piece of something the size of a grain of sand would do the trick? Pros: Cons:
From my listening experience the Westone 3 is a very great universal three way speaker. From my listening sessions it was clear that yes indeed a three way speaker is better sounding than that of a two way or 2.5 way design such as the Shure SE530's. I tested these earphones out to see how a triple driver design would really stack up against my custom dual driver Sensa 2X-S and Shure SE530's. I wanted to know if a three way speaker design would really be superior to that of a two way. In the follow aspects what stood out most to me was the Westone three's had much more bass and the high end was a bit more clear than either of my other pair. The midrange is also a bit more focused and I can hear the instruments a bit more clearly. I was a bit shocked to find they were better in these aspects than my customs. Although they cannot rival the extended high end of my Sensa 2X-S I think they no doubt are the best universal three way monitor around. The customs do stand out in the sense that they make the music sound more natural to my ears at least were all universal monitors I have tried seem to make the sound seem similar while only improving on aspects of clarity and range. I must also note I found the Westone sleeves to be far more comfortable than that of the Shure's! In ending my review I have concluded that I am going to end my quest for the ultimate in ear monitor and dwell into the UE-11 Pro custom monitor. But for anyone not wanting to drop a grand on in ear monitors I would highly recommend if you want the best in universal monitors please don't hesitate and pick up the Westone 3's! Pros: Cons:
Excellent product. Enjoy the full sound and accurate sound. Outstanding with iPod. Pros: Cons:
Wow. These are so comfortable and the sound is amazing. I would recommend these to anybody who is serious about there music. Great customer service. Do yourself a favor and buy these, well worth the $. Pros: Cons:
The Westone 3 are almost perfect !! Well it's two weeks now. The sound is so accurate that good recordings sound great and poor recordings sound bad. I listen to music with them on my Iphone 3G every day all day, I am a contractor that works out side and has the luxury of being able to listen to music when I work. I put them in my ears at 5:30 am and take them out at 6:00pm with NO removal that is how comfortable they are(comply ear tips) lite and well shaped (took me a day to figure out best tips)that you forget you have them stuck half way to your brain. The cable design is soft pliable and non existent compared to most. The part about giving them time for burn in is BS if they don't sound good off the bat you are "A" not wearing them properly or "B" your music device and or recording sucks. If you really really want to put the W3's to the test then listen to I Mother Earth the Scenery & Fish album- Earth,Sky & "C" song It has every type of instrument in it and the sound quality will blow you away. How westone is able to produce warm clear lows Mids and highs in such a small package with no distortion and very very little over lap sets them high on my scale. The only problem with true sound reproduction if it sounds like a duck and it sounds like a duck and it sounds like a duck, it's a duck. The only reason I give them 4 stars is westone does not offer the Ipnone/PDA compatible cable with the mic and answer button like my triple FI 10's. So if high quality sound reproduction for under 500 dollars is your goal then Westone 3 is your best bet. But because I have to be available at all times to my clients and need my music to keep my sanity,I love my UE VI 10's that have a little less bass a ton of highs and Mids with the built in mic and answer button that doubles as a pause FF/RW button that I find indispensable. So when Westone offers this feature on the 3's it will be a five star and the ultimate pair of off the shelf ear-bud's Pros: Cons:
but i think shure 530 is the best earphones. I will more basses for westone 3 Pros: Cons:
The Westone 3s are perfect. They have a great, listenable sound with excellent detail, they fit nicely in the ear, and they are very comfortable. SOUND: The Westone 3s have a great balance between high, mid, and low frequencies. It seems that there is an incentive to make earphone âimpressiveâ by boosting the high-frequencies and making all the details more noticeable. However, this is sounds unnatural and actually tired your ears when listening for long durations. I would compare this to shopping for a TV. TVs are always overly-bright when displayed in a store on factory default settings. It really draws your eye to the TV and makes it seem impressive, but it looks pretty unnatural and actually strains your eyes. Unfortunately, unlike TVs, headphones donât have settings (except for the Sennheiser IE8s, to some extent) and you have to use either EQ or an amp, which is not an idea solution for portable audio â the amp makes it less portable and the EQ on most mp3 players causes horrible distortion. Anyway, because the Westone 3s donât play this game, they have a balanced sound. The high frequencies are very accurate, so all the detail is there, but it is not in-your-face, which makes them more listenable. There is plenty of low frequency (bass) for popular music, but it is certainly not excessive. The bass seems to go deep enough for an earphone. I certainly don't feel like I'm missing out on low end. However, I think the bass response depends somewhat on how the earphones are positioned in your ear, so it probably will vary from person to person and from listen to listen. FIT: In terms of comfort, the Westone 3s are awesome. They fit nicely in your outer ear (see the picture) and are quite light. In the past, Iâve used silicone ear-tips, but I find that the foam ones included are even more comfortable and provide incredible sound isolation; they are basically ear plugs. The cable is a good length and will reach a hip pocket with no weird extension cables. The over-the-ear design is great for reducing microphonics (noise from the cord being bumped), keeps the cable out of your face, and should help prevent stress on the cable-earphone connection. Unfortunately, the cable appears to not be modular, which means accidentally pulling the cable out of the earphones could ruin them. Fortunately, cable-earphone connection seems durable and the over-the-ear design should prevent accidental stress on the connection. MY CHOICE: I didnât really want to pay to try all the different earphones in the price range, so I chose after reading lots of reviews and comparisons. Based on what Iâve read, the Westone 3s have the best mix of highs, mids, and lows and you arenât sacrificing any detail. If you really like lots of treble, you could consider the Ultimate Ears Triple.Fi 10s or maybe the Shure SE530s. The Sennheiser IE8s are supposed to be pretty awesome too, but Iâm a little skeptical about whether a single-driver design can produce better sound. Also, the tunable bass response sounds kind of gimmicky. Based on the limited number of reviews available when I purchased, the impression I got was that the IE8s have deeper bass, but they are less detailed overall. There are probably more reviews and opinions now, so it would be worth looking into. Regardless, my experience with the Westone 3s has been excellent. Everything about them is great and there are no major downsides, so they should not be overlooked! Pros: Cons:
I've had the Shure e3, Shure e4, and dozens of other headphones and earphones over the year. The Westone 3 has by far the best sound from an earphone that I've ever heard. However, let me preface the rest of my review by mentioning that it took me a long time to find the right eartips for the Westone 3. At first, I went with the eartips from my Shure e4. They did not work well. In fact, I spent a couple hours going back and forth from comfort foam to soft flex to triple flange (as is and cut/modified) to flex sleeves and back again. It was a lengthy and at times frustrating process because I know what a good seal is supposed to feel like a la my experience with earphones over the past few years. With my shures, I used to embed the eartip into my canal much more snugly since the Shure design was more tube-like and thus easier to seat. The Westone 3 is much trickier since it's 'flatter'. The foam eartips worked relatively well but they didn't give that super-solid fitment and enclosure that provided truly dynamic bass. With a lot of experimentation, I ultimately ended with the large grey soft flex eartips. The key is good fitment and it took me a while to get used to inserting the Westone 3 in my ears. Indeed, in the beginning, I would fidget with them almost all the time. Now, however, I've gotten to the point where I can pop them right in. Frankly, I think it was the same process with the Shures, but that was so long ago that I've forgotten the 'break-in' process. Anyway, the reason I mention my travails is because it is imperative with earphones that one gets a solid fit, seal, and insertion. If there are any gaps between the eartip and your ear/canal, the sound is negatively impacted...and tremendously so on the mid and bottom end. So, stick with it until you find what works completely best for you (meaning, try all the eartips, and the Westone 3 comes with many). Anyway, that said, on to the review. What can I say? The sound is sweet. The instructions are spot on when they urge you to turn the equalizer OFF. I've been shopping for new hifi speakers recently and damned if these earphones are pretty good by comparison. The bass is extraordinary. I find myself noticing percussion and sound effects on tracks that I never knew were there. Frankly, the same goes for the midrange. The soundstage is just expansive. I feel like I'm enveloped by the music. I can't iterate enough how fantastic jazz, classical, rock and vocals sound. On listening to Dire Straits', Mark Knoppfler's husky voice is dramatic, the drums are crisp, and his guitar has a clarity that was all but muffled with earlier earphones that I've used. The principle of having 3 distinct drivers to power the lows, mids and highs really does result in a more dynamic listening experience. With classical music, the strings sound alive and rich. This is truly where the enhanced texture of the bass really matters because the bigger string instruments carry a low end that really dies on other earphones. The Westone's ability to properly generate the richness across the bass clef really makes the hairs stand on my arm. In particular, Yo Yo Ma's rendition of Bach's Cello Sonatas was just fantastic. I went back and listened to my old Shures and noticed that on a flat EQ, there simply was no lower tonality on the tracks at all. I had compensated by goosing the bass on the EQ. Frankly, the Westone almost, but not quite, bordered on having too much bass. With my old EQ settings, the bass was bloated and overpowering. The guys at Westone really got it right here because I'm not able to listen to the music unpolluted by any DSP in the MP3 player. I guess the last thing to mention is how much better I now like wearing the Westones because of the different eartip that I'm now using. Because it's larger, it doesn't sit inside my ear canal as deeply and consequently, it's basically unnoticeable. I literally can listen for hours without fatigue. Moreover, sitting here at my computer typing the review, I'm already pining for the opportunity to pop them back in for my walk home. The cable is also fantastic in that it's pre-twisted so they don't get tangled as easily. Just a lot of little thought put into the details. Good stuff all around and completely recommended. Pros: Cons:
A superb pair of earphones, very comfortable, fit right in my ear so I can lie against a pillow with them on. Very cool design, really pleased I found them. Very good customer service, despite my moaning and awkwardness, dealt with me very well. Would recommend them anytime: the website, the product and the service. Pros: Cons:
The sound with the Westone 3's is absolutely incredible. The clarity here is incredible. Instruments which previously were hidden in the background of the music are now clearly and wonderfully present. However there is no loss of lower end or mid range (thanks to the three-way design). This leads to a sound which is warm, deep, and very tight in the low end, detailed, smooth, and pleasantly present in the mid range, and silky, smooth, quick, and detailed in the upper range. All in all an absolutely incredible audible experience. However finding a good fit with the included tips is essential for optimum sound to be achieved. Thanks to Westone and Earphone Solutions (received product very quickly as promised) for this wonderful product! Pros: Cons:
it is the best you can carry but you can hear better music in a car which has an avarage speaker system Pros: Cons:
Having read various reviews of the 3's I was sceptical about the claims made for them, but also curious. As I was not satisfied with the Ultimate Ears Triple Fi's I was using - principally a comfort issue - I decided to splash the cash. The 3's arrived 2 days later and after trying the various ear tips for fit and comfort I can only say WOW! They are so comfortable you forget you're wearing them. But more importantly they sound incredible, none of the claims made for them are over exaggerated. The sound stage wraps around you, they are incredibly detailed, superbly balanced with tight punchy bass, warm mid range and a crisp, clean treble. I can't my ipod touch could sound so good. As you may have guessed I love these phones. However, there is a downside, they do show up recordings for what they are and the quality varies enormously. But having experienced them I can't imagine life without them. The best purchase I've ever made? Pros: Cons:
Excellent - far better than the UM2's that accidentally ended in washing machine after six months. Superior clarity, separation, and spacialization. Disappointed that it is so hard to read "L" and "R" on the earphones. Pros: Cons:
westone 3 son unos in ear increibles, estoy muy contento con ellos, soy ingeniero de sonido y los uso en todas mis giras, son los mejores que he escuchado nunca, tengo que felicitaros por el producto, la atencion recibida y la rapidez de la entrega, se los recomendaria a todos los profesionales del sonido directo, creo que son una herramienta imprescindible para cualquier ingeniero de sonido que se precie. Pros: Cons:
As background, I am an avid music listener but know nothing about the technical aspects of sound. My reference point is either, I like the quality of a particular sound or I do not. Before purchasing my Westone 3âs, I used Shure SE420-Kâs and Triple.Fi 10âs by Ultimate Ears. As to music, I listen predominantly to jazz, classical, trance and progressive. Without question, the quality of sound produced by the Westone 3âs far surpass my experience with either the Shure or Triple.Fi 10âs. Within seconds of listening, one senses additional âlayersâ of music that previously went unheard. The Westone 3âs produce a warmth and brilliance that gives life to the energy and passion of music. A purely subjective observation: if I listen to low Bit Rate recordings, perhaps 128kbps or less, the Westone 3âs do not distinguish themselves so markedly and to my ears, seem only marginally better than the Triple.Fi 10âs and about equal to the Shure SE420âs. On the other hand, with each incremental increase in sound quality, the Westone 3âs extend their lead to the point where listening to music with anything else, becomes disappointing. Before purchasing the Westone 3âs, I regarded myself as a bystander to music; someone on the edge of passing sound; given the 3âs brilliance and opulence however, you âareâ the music and the pleasure of listening becomes extraordinary. In addition to unmatchable sound quality, the Westone 3âs braided cables do not tangle allowing me to avoid the complex puzzle of snarls other cables inexplicably create to frustrate me. If I were to find fault, it would be with the selection of eartips provided with the Westone 3âs; none (for me at least) provides a truly âcomfortableâ fit. In this regard, the Shure black closed-cell foam eartips do a much better job isolating noise and ensuring a remarkable fit. Second but less important is the Westone soft-shell travel case that may not provide adequate protection for business travelers; once again, I would defer to Shure and their hard-shell case. Whether any of this has been useful or not, I am uncertain but to my mind, the Westone 3âs have established the new baseline for sound-quality excellence. Minor changes to the accessories would further increase their remarkable lead. Pros: Cons:
I have owned several earphones and certainly the Westone 3 tru 3 way driver earphones are my favorite so far. I found an overall well balanced sound and very detailed. Very comfortable to wear and good exterior sound isolation Pros: Cons:
I just recently received my Westone 3's as a replacement for a pair of Shure S430 in canal monitors which were stolen from my car. I labored long and hard reading numerous reviews across varying web sites before making the decision to purchase the 3's from Earphone Solutions. I was inclined to go with the UM - Tripe fi but, ultimately I think I purchased the best in ear monitor solution on the planet in the Westone 3's. I am an audiophime whose home rig is anchored my Lexicon Amp/Processor and Krell LAT 2's and a Martin Logan Descent subwoofer. In my opinion, however, the W-3's rival even these fine components in producing a truly musical, hi-fidelity signal in a tiny package. Since purchasing these in canal earphones (partnered with an iphone 3G) I have been rediscovering some of my favorite old cuts and finding new and finer details throughout my musical library. The dedicated 3 armature system pioneered by Westone combined with the comfort of their well fitting foam tips had the W-3's performin perfectly out of the box! The comfort, sound isolation and incredible detail and clarity of the W-3's has to be experienced to be believed. I purchased them blind, based only upon the review provided by Earphone Solutions after their visit to Westone Headquarters in Boulder, CO for the unveiling o the W-3 in ear monitors. The combination of incredible clarity, mid, bass and high end separation and overall signal quality makes them , in my mind the equal to my Krell LAT 2 monitors or overall listening satisfaction. KUDOS to Westone for delivering on the best in ear monitor solution in today's market Pros: Cons:
These earphones are simply gorgeous. They fit perfectly and have a fantastic sound. Absolutely worth the money. Pros: Cons:
Having owned and later sold the following earphones. Um1, Um2, se530, ue superfi 10, er6i, se500pth, i feel i can offer a real opinion upon these earphones, these people complaining about certain elements of these earphones, need to make sure they're a good fitting, as for me i feel there is ample seperation of the mid highs and lows. for me they offered the complete packaged in terms of a balance of detail and smooth sound signiture that doesn't leave your ears fatigue. These iem are just a joy to listen to, i would say unamped they sound better then any of the other earphones i've owned, but once these are amped ( graham slee solo ) you can really see what they;re capable of! after hearing these amped i sold my se530 and my super.fi10 as they;re not in the same league imo. Althogh these are not my rewired hd650's, they're on the move, as close to enjoyable as i am able to have. from a former se530 fanboy, lets hope shure bring out something to challange these Pros: Cons:
I've tried most of the upper end devices, and had settled on UM 2's for the past three years. I was completely satisfied with them--and still am, for that matter. But a side-by-side between the UM 2's and the W 3 shows just how far Westone has come. Nothing I have compared them with has come close. Clean, clear, efficient, balanced, pleasing, smooth and comfortable all come to mind as descriptors. They are as close to perfection as anything on the market, and as a previous reviewer noted, I too can't imagine where Westone--or anyone else--can go from here. It's as good as it gets. Pros: Cons:
My first venture into high end in-ear earphones and the experience is extraordinary. The fit is comfortable and secure right out of the box and the sound is amazing. The separation and clarity is fantastic, rivaled only by premium floor standing speakers. The instructions on insertion and care are very helpful but would have liked greater discussion on changing out earpieces. While expensive, these Westone 3's are a marvelous listening experience and worth every penny. Pros: Cons:
I am not a technical bod of any description and shall leave that to those who like to spout technical terms and phrases.......nor am I a musician (not even slightly) I do however know exactly what I like to listen to and how I want it to sound. I'm old enough to be able to spend my money on 'high end' products and have been around the block, from a musical perspective, quite a few times; just about every genre you care to name sits in my collection. I own some 530's and was somewhat nervous about replacing them with these W3's since they have performed admirably thank you very much. All the technical blurb and words from those in the 'biz' was very convincing, but nonetheless gobbeldygook to a layman like me. I just want to know do they sound good, do they give me goose bumps at the right moments, do they make me (heaven forbid) break out into spontaneous sing-along? I'm a hardcore mountain biker so it's the outside environment that they are being used in. The answer, after a few weeks of tweaking, is yes they do! There's no doubt that they make my goose bumps just that little bit bigger than those created by the 530's. Someone in this review panel suggested turning off the equalizer on whatever music machine I'm using which I have never done before - result? Stunning! They get my vote, I prefer them over the 530's BUT, as is evidenced by this review panel - it's so personal and so subjective that quite frankly, if you get the chance to test drive them first then do so 'cos you won't want to buy another pair (of either flavour) once you've made your choice. Pros: Cons:
The Westone 3 really is as good as the reviews say it is. The lows, mids, highs are all there. It sounds like a better version of the UE super.fi 10. Although the Shure 530 sounds great too and in my opinion has a better vocal component and soundstage effect, the Westone 3 price is more attractive. Pros: Cons:
I received my Westone 3s with great anticipation, having only used cheap earphones previously. However, I was greatly disappointed when I plugged them in to my iPod. I then realized there was a problem with the wiring. I contacted Westone, they were very helpful, and sent them back. Within a day I received a new pair of 3s within a day or two. They are great !!! I'm not a dedicated, know-it-all audiophile, but I know what sounds good to me and the Westone 3s sound great !! Pros: Cons:
I was personally disappointed with these IEMs considering their price. Good and bad things: For the good, they are very comfortable and light. I would compare the comfort to that of the UM1 (which I own), the cable is improved, is lighter and more flexible (it does not get stiff in cold weather like the old westone cable). If you like Bass they have plenty, and percussion instruments sound great with these, punchy and natural. For the bad, I found that while their bass frequencies sound great for percussion, it makes bass guitars sound bloated and unnatural. The low frequencies are so prominent they cover up some of the mids detracting greatly in sound quality. The mids and highs are good except for there being a drop in response just above male vocal frequencies, which made female vocals a bit lacking on the top. But perhaps the biggest flaw I found after the bass, was the complete lack of "air" in the mix, which to me kills a headphone. If you mostly listen to electronic music I think these are very much worth the money, otherwise I would not recommend them. But your mileage may vary, as they say, since it seems a lot of people DO really like these. I have worked as a live sound engineer for 7 years and perhaps that conditions me to like a more analytical sound, I want to be able to listen to the instruments and recognize their sound as what they really sound like live, perhaps if you don't know what the instruments are supposed to sound like, headphone colouring is more acceptable. Pros: Cons:
I am an older audiofile, & have been a consumer of audio equipment since the '50's. My equipment tastes run to McIntosh, Marantz, B&W, etc. - - not too eclectic by today's standards, but still right up there near the upper end of the quality/performance scale. My music tastes run from Jazz, Pop, and some limited Rock to Classical, Choral, and Organ. Having witnessed the evolution to true high quality sound reproduction in the personal portable player category over the years it is very gratifying to experience the warm audible delights of these Westone 3 in-ear headphones. They truly fully satisfy my sonic/soundstage preferences. I have avoided purchasing this type of product over the years, due to sonic inadequacies of earlier designs. These earphones have broken through that barrier and fully satisfy the emotional, sonic & soundstage experiences I seek when listening to my music. It is expected that future higher end products of this type will emerge to knock this one from its current "best one yet" perch, but I for one will remain quite satisfied with these earphones. All of the accolades for configuration and build quality by your other reviewers apply here, and I couldn't be happier with my purchase. Kudos to Westone in their pursuit of excellence, and Kudos to Earphone Solutions for providing this excellent site in its dedication to fully informing the customer and thus to enable a most comfortable buying decision Pros: Cons:
I 'm a little bit desapointed by this ear, I was expecting more than UM2 for this price it 's not the case the trefle is too short, the medium trefle is too present and the bass is behind. The position in the ear is not confortable, so I 'm not really satisfied and I 'm going to sell it. Pros: Cons:
the selection of tip is key to the sound of W3, at this stage I am still going through break in, but I feel that so far music is a bit too "laid back" Pros: Cons:
The sound,comfort, cord length are all awesome and I love the volume control. However, two things I don't like is the cord isn't detachable so if you accidently get the cord hung up you'll have to send it in if you break the wire.Also if you choose not to use the volume control wire the regular end won't fit with some ipod cases. Pros: Cons:
been a while since I got my Westone 3, been spending quite some time with it and totally loved it!! Before Westone 3, I used to have Shure E530 and UE Triple fi, but both of them werent exactly what I was looking for, while Shure E530 had the best fit, the sound quality especially the bass cannot compare to UE which I love the most and UE Triple fi just gets in my nerves everytime I tried to get the best seal with it, and I dont like the design. I was frustated looking for a good IEM for me, I was thinking of something between Shure E530 with good comfort and UE Triple Fi with good sound, and Westone 3 is exactly the answer. The low is really controlled, the mid is better than Triple Fi and the treble is almost as good as Shures.. What I like the most is it's easy to get a good seal with it and eventhough I have tinnitus, I can totally enjoy the music with Westone 3!! Pros: Cons:
Purchased W3s with great anticipation but I regret this decision now. I keep testing it to a range of devices (NWZ-A826, S615, Rio Karma and Cowon D2, vaio UX280P and two other PCs, etc.) and file types (wav, flac, mp3, aac, wma etc). Even though W3s fit comfortably and are undeniably balanced and warm, they sound muddy (read: when compared to Shure SE530). Let me try to explain in my own words: The mids are clearly inferior and bass is Ã¢â¬Åover entrenchedÃ¢â¬Â across the spectrum, up to the point where highs come into play. The soundstage is much more plain than compared to SE530. Its ironic that SE530s that do not have dedicated driver for mids best Westone3s with dedicated driver. My other complaint with the phones are that they sound "piercing", so disturbingly that gives me headache and desire to remove them after 30 min. of use. No change of EQ settings and eartips help it. Third, again, comparing to SE530 they provide significantly less isolation and believe me, I tested it in a variety of environments (home, subway, etc.) and all ten types of supplied eartips. I asked several friends to compare these two and everyone agreed that while Westone 3s sound decent, they fade in comparison with Se530s in terms of clarity, richness of the sound and isolation. What can I say in conclusion? Sure, these are a very high quality phones and built with great thought put in them, but listening to them does not bring any joy, if you know what I mean. No sudden smile on your face that SE530 does. You never hear that full sound that is so rich, alive and attentive to details as Se530 does. If I'd never used these before, I'd think Westone 3s are great, but Se530s set the bar higher and you can't ignore it. P.S. Oh yes, if you are using audio files compressed at 192 and lower (in the case of mp3, for example), reconsider buying another phones. Westone 3s are not very tolerant towards highly compressed fillies. They sound horrible! Again, Shure famously wins here. The point of view expressed here is solely mine and based with my intensive (6 day with W3s and 1 year with Se530) usage and comparison of these two phones. I really hope they grow on me since I feel like I wasted a lot of money for the new Westone 3s, while I already had a better alternative and a winner at home. Long live SE530s! Pros: Cons:
I recently purchased the Westone 3 headphones after owning the UM2 for about 45 days. The reason I bought them was due to how impressed I was from the UM2 and for 100$ more I couldnt resist. Needless to say the UM2 were in such good shape that I gave them to my brother for his christmas present and kept the Westone3s for myself. They are better, and a step up, and you can hear the 3 drivers. I do think the UM2s played louder at a lower volume level on my ipod touch but that hasnt made any impact. Both are amazing headphones with the W3 even better in treble and bass. I now burn all my music in the highest quality because you can hear the difference with these and im running out of space on my ipod touch. If you can afford the money go with these for $399 they are worth it, in my opinion. Same cords as UM2, many more ear piece options though I only like the foam tips, these are awesome. Pros: Cons:
Obviously, from all the accolades, these phones sound great- perfectly balanced across the entire spectrum, with deep bass and clear highs. I tried to pick out "holes" in the sound, and just couldn't find any. To really enjoy them, you will want a really good source, and leave out any kinds of enhancement. But thing that I really love the most is that they are really comfortable, and can be worn for hours using the comply foam tips. They fit into the ear canal perfectly (like a hearing aid, so suppose they are showing their pedigree). I also have a pair of Shure E500PTH which also sound great but they aren't comfortable for long term wear- I would find my ears feeling sore after about 3-4 hours and had to stop listening. No such problem with these Westones. You really can't go wrong picking up a pair of these if you are serious about sound and comfort. Pros: Cons:
âI want a balanced sound that perhaps offers the SE530sâ outstanding soundstaging but with tighter, less-intrusive bass, plus most importantly a clearer, fuller, more prominent midrange, and the âairyâ extension on the highs that probably only electrostatic sound can provide.â I wrote that on this web site last August in a review praising the UM2 in-ear headphones, Westoneâs outstanding two-way system that, to my mind (and ears) trumps their competition by a wide margin. In that same review I said Iâd be first in line when Westone finally delivered their triple armature system. And I was. Well, pretty close to the front anyway. Iâve been living with the 3s for about a month now and several times during sampling I had to remind myself these are itty-bitty, ECHs! The technology available to create something this grand in such a small size is remarkable and something to be grateful for, but individual designers still have to apply that technology. And Westone has, again, trumped everyone in my opinion based on the ECHs I either own or have had the opportunity to sample. In fact, the 3s are almost too good for portable devices. If you donât believe me, run them through a high-end home system. Iâve been doing both and have been tremendously impressed with how they sound within my system. Oh, and also when connected to an iPod. Almost forgot! ï Once again, the bass is tight. It neither intrudes upon nor overwhelms the mids. Itâsâ¦balanced. Well, of course! Howeverâas John Belushi used to sayââBut, Noooo!â It just doesnât happen that easily. As I mentioned in my UM2 discussion, bass is a tricky thing to balance in speakers and headphones, particularly in classical music recording. Because Westone have âbalancedâ the bass here, the most important area of music reproduction, the midrange, is left free, warm and detailed. And the difficult high end is revelatory. By that I mean, Iâm hearing high detail that I knew was there in pieces Iâm very familiar with but didnât always hear via iPod. (Just to clarify, I transfer music uncompressed using Appleâs AIFF, i.e., WAV, format.) The wicked test for the 3s was, however, in my home system. I have two, but donât want to clutter this long review with more information than anyone wants. I use separate amp, preamp and D/A conversion. I also have an A/V amp for home theatre. For headphone listening Iâve a pair of Beyer DT880s and the Stax SR-202s. However, I currently run those through a Luxman amp used solely for that purpose until I can afford to upgrade SRM-252II driver unit. All Cardas interconnects (and speaker cable), either Microtwin or Quadlink. For playing CDs, I use either my Oppo DV-983H or the DV-981HD. (Waiting for their Blu-ray player due out soon!) By definition, all ECHs are closed systems. So Iâm not going to compare the Stax, or even the Beyers (which are open phones) to the 3s. The 3s simply stand on their own against all other ECHs. They should probably be compared principally to the UE Triple.fi and Shureâs SE530. I wish I owned a pair of these because I think the 3s would equal or surpass them based on my experience with the E500s. Also, I believe Sennheiser has delivered a triple armature unit, but I havenât heard any of their ECH products. Iâve used several recordings as sound samples ranging from remastered analogs to more recent strtictly digital recordings. The fact that there are still sonic issues inherent in digital recording is not for this discussion since, for better or worse, thatâs what weâre listening to these days. Mostly. (Iâm leaving out any discussion of vinyl because I havenât gotten round to sampling it yet. Iâm saving the best for last. Perhaps another time!) I ran the gamut of solo voice, large symphonic work, Wagner and Strauss operas, solo piano, heavy choral involvement, and so on: - Christa Ludwigâs famous 1964 recordings for RCA of scenes from Ariadne and Goetterdaemmerung - Nicolai Geddaâs four-disc âBest ofâ set which ranges from the 1950s through the â80s - Gilelsâ Brahms Concerti - Kempffâs Beethoven Sonatas - Klempererâs 1964 Messiah to gain the benefit of the spectacular Philharmonia Chorus and Kingsway Hall - Karajanâs magnificent 1980 Parsifal with the Berlin Philharmonic recorded in the Philharmonie - Boehmâs 1967 Siegfried recorded live at Bayreuth - Klempererâs 1962 Mahler Second, again recorded in Kingsway and featuring the Philharmonia Chorus and Orchestra - Basil Poledourisâs grand, thunderous score for 1981âs Conan, the Barbarian recorded with the Orchestra & Chorus of Santa Cecilia, and the Radio Symphony of Rome; produced for Varese by Robert Townson - James Hornerâs splendid score for 1994âs Legends of the Fall with the London Symphony Orchestra - John Williamsâs scores for the last (uh, first) three Star Wars films also with the LSO and the LSO Chorus - Williamsâs 20th Anniversary reissue of the E.T. soundtrack - Charles Gerhardtâs benchmark recordings of Korngold and other great film composers from the early 1970s, recorded in Kingsway under the supervision of premier genius engineer, Kenneth Wilkinson - Miklos Rozsaâs monumental and stunning score for El Cid reconstructed by Tadlow Music on three discs and recorded in 2007 by James Fitzpatrickâhe is Tadlowâand Nic Raine conducting the City of Prague Philharmonic Orchestra and Chorus - Rozsaâs complete multi-track recordings of the Ben-Hur soundtrack recorded in 1958 on the M-G-M soundstages, resurrected and restored by Rhino and Turner Sound Most of this music will test any system, and if it plays well then any pop/rock/jazz, whatever, will present no problems to the 3s. And, indeed, after all that, Rod Stewart, Frank Sinatra (the Mobile Fidelity remaster of âOnly the Lonelyâ as well as the comprehensive Columbia Years)â¦Glenn Miller, Paul & Artie, Fleetwood Mac, even The Everly Brothers(!) and anything else thrown at the 3s sounded just fine, thank you! The Miller originals, by the way, were really beautifully remastered by Proper Records and the 3s didnât miss any of it. The Conan score alone contains just about anything one could want to âtestâ speakers, or any part of a high-end system! However, Hornerâs Legends and Rozsaâs El Cid are more recent recordings. Selections 5 (âDeath of Samuelâ) and 11 (âRevengeâ) on the Legends CDâjust two examples, mind youâare simply stunning. Horner uses all his trademarks here, and listening is actually a lot better than sitting through the film which didnât live up to the score, unfortunately. As I mentioned in my August review, I own the UE Triple.fis. Theyâre very good in my system, very explosive, but they do lack the warmth and musicality of the 3s. The UEâs soundstaging doesnât have quite the easy pinpointing of the 3s: There are the upper strings stage right; the lower stage left; the brass and horns in the center back; the winds forward center, and so forth. I had the opportunity to spend a lot of time with the Shure SE530âs predecessor, the E500s, and was startled at the soundstaging Shure achieved. The most impressive thing about them, I think, but surpassed, or certainly equaled, by the 3s. Also, as I mentioned in the earlier review, with prolonged listening bass seemed to swamp the mids on the Shures. I was always conscious of this and found it intrusive. Because of the superb soundstaging Westone has built into them, along with the smooth balanced sound throughout the spectrum, the 3s seem to wrap the music around you. It almost seems to be coming from within you, the listener, and you can focus on any detail at any time, or simply allow the music to flow through you. In the closed, dynamic headphone environment, the listening experience is very personalâone of the points of this kind of headphone. Almost forgot: fit. I still forget Iâm wearing these even though the body is slightly fatter than the UM2s, as youâd expect, and theyâve a slightly shorter nozzle. However, the grey, soft rubber tips are still the most comfortable choice for me and Westoneâs own, included in the package, are slightly softer than those Iâd ordered from Shure for my UM2s. So what else could I want from such teeny-tiny giants? Maybe Westoneâs custom fit earpieces since Iâm guessing the 3s might be hiding a secret or two yet, theyâre obviously that good. Oh, and guysâ¦just one thing: For those of us old enough to remember when we didnât need glasses, perhaps the logo on the left earpiece could have been blue? I solved this problem by âcoloringâ in the letter âRâ on the inside of the right earpiece with a Pentel Metallic Gold pen. Now I can see without my glasses which side isâ¦right. But I donât think Iâll send them back to you to put a blue logo on my left earpiece! Althoughâ¦I COULD use my UM2s while you did thatâ¦ahem. Thank you, Westone. That doesnât sound sufficient for what youâve done here, but I donât know what else to say. Pros: Cons:
I own an extraordinary headset by ableplanet. The Westone 3 were on par, and a little better because of the very natural sound. I had to use the 3-fold adapter to get full bass. Pros: Cons:
i'm the type of person who wants the best of the best and if i know that i bought something that is not that, then i'll stress it out untill i do. For my birthday i went to please myslef with the Se 530pth because many thought that it was simply fantastic. Now when i went to buy them, the store offers a free demo for any earphone and the Westones Blew my mind, so much definition, and tight base. As though if u close your eyes you can imagine your self in personal concert. Simply astonishing ps. i heard that you need to play it for at least 100 hours to break the very high end earphones in. just a sugestion Pros: Cons:
I have purchased, Shure, Bose, Panasonic, and various other types of Ear Phones for my I Pod and C D Player, The Westone 3 are the best of all that I have tried so far by a long shot. The high pitches as well as low pitches are clearly defined and without distortion. I would strongly recommend these to anybody who wants to seriously listen to serious music! L J White I like to listen to good Classical Music as well as Pros: Cons:
I was happy to get them, but when i tried them, i wasn't exactly pleased with them. I tried different settings on my ipod, even turning off the eq, but was i disappointed. i am looking at returning them or exchanging them for the UM2. Maybe others will be happy with them, but for me, the long wait was a waste of time. Pros: Cons:
I own se530s, um2 and now the 3's I'm not a youngster I am in my late forty's and I have a relatively good ear I use a a classic ipod 120gb and have all my files in apple losses format bottom line is the 3's have no equal or competition as far as I'm concerned they sound good no matter what you listen to. I have run sound boards for bands and have herd some out standing sound systems and know I have there equal right in my pocket, or maybe even better. They fit your ear very well supper comfortable and have tons of tips to get the right fit well worth the wait GOOD JOB WESTONE!!! Pros: Cons:
I upgraded from a pair of Shure SE310s, and have noticed a large improvement. The Westone 3 in-ear-monitors have incredible bass reproduction. Listening to bass-heavy artists like Beck or Gorillaz, whose beats make even my giant Klipsch speakers distort, come through crystal clear and strong with these headphones. No rumbling or popping, just smooth perfect bass. At the same time, the trebles and mids shine through without interference. I have noticed that the mids are ever so slightly recessed: it's not really a problem, as these headphones have a great, creamy, musical sound that feels like warm honey is being poured into your ears. They are very comfortable, and I have worn them for 5 hour stretches without any discomfort. They isolate noise very well, but not as well as the Shures, which cuts both ways: loud noises, like the subway, encroach a little more on your listening experience, but in most cases you can also keep these phones in your ears while having a brief conversation on the street or at the register in a store and still hear most of what the other person is saying. These phones are about as good as I think I can expect from any in-ear-monitor. I will probably never buy another pair of buds, unless it's to replace this pair. Cans are a separate story, just because of their reputation for an expanded sound stage. The Westone 3s have a good degree of separation anyway, but there are physical limitations to the effects you can achieve with one style of headphone vs. another. Bottom line: if you want IEMs, get this pair: you can do no better. Pros: Cons:
Super sound, but one needs acrobatic skills to insert them and ability to think in reverse. Not a fast lane product! Also chord dangles like string and can knot if not careful. Generally not a good mobile product-better for couches! Pros: Cons:
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I am waiting for my friends to bring the Westone 3's over to southern France where I am now living. They arrive on the 30th. I can't wait to see them. I am more anxious about trying the earphones. (forgive me, friends) I will let you know how I like them as soon as possible. Just for the record, it was a pleasure doing business with you all. Very helpful. No hustle. Two of my favorites. My Best, Eric Gethers Pros: Cons:
Owned shure SE530, Westone um2, shure E4C, and Shure E2's. Had Westone 3 for a few weeks. they are the best headphones i've ever heard and the most comfortable. Did actually feel a bit weird when i first started using them as it feels like there's nothing in your ears! treble is noticably better than se530's. Pros: Cons:
I got these to replace a set of SE530's. I find that the Westone's to sound cleaner than the Shure's. The fit I would rate the same and the Westone cords, being more pliable, I would rate as better. Awesome sound; great value. Pros: Cons:
These are the best earphones I have ever owned, I thought the 2's were great but the 3's surpass them. Gave my 2's to the wife and won't let her use the 3's because she will want a pair too. Well worth the $$, and shipping was excellent. Pros: Cons:
The world of IEMS is a tough place to be in without reviews and actually trying them out for yourself. Being an audiophile, its hard to please oneself if you truly want to listen to music at a quality that is as close as the live performance itself. I have started off with the shure se310 which is a single driver earphone and personally, its one of the best single driver earphones I have ever owned. When I had the budget to set the level a bit higher, reivews was all I had between the shure se530 and westone um2, but since I'm more of a bass listener, the um2's really delivered superbly. When earphonesolutions confirmed the release of the westone 3, there is no way I'm not getting my hands on them. And just like a heavenly blessing, they sound unbelievable! Its like you couldn't imagine something so small can create such an outstanding sounstage. The highs were perfect, the mids glorious, and the heart-pumping deep bass is awesome. After listening to a lot of hip-hop songs (I luv your girl - The dream feat. young jeezy) has been really the song that tests the bass of these babies. I just couldn't stop playing the song over and over again. But dont get me wrong, they are not only for hip-hop listeners, they sound great in all genres. Anybody who has the extra cash should get one, you wont be disappointed. Thank you earphonesolutions for your passion in the business. Pros: Cons:
Flavio, laptop + amp is dead quiet. Checked this during quiet passages in a song as well as with playback paused. I'll get back to you on the other items. Right now I'm enjoying the best d@mn universal fit true 3 driver earphones on the planet too much. :} For perspective here are the other earphones/headphones that I own: (A pair of Boise Tri Port headphones and a pair of Sony noise cancelling headphones have already been sent to Ebay) Apple iPod earbuds - Don't use anymore. Unknown Sony earphones that were my first "I gotta get something better than these iPod earbuds" purchase. These are used if I want noise isolation and don't care too much if they get lost/damaged. Sennheiser 424 HDs - Had these since the late 70s/early 80s. They pretty much spend their existence plugged into my conventional home stereo for the times when I am watching a movie late and don't want to use the speakers. They are a large "on ear" open design. I've replaced the leads once and the sponges a few times. Grado 80s - my choice when listening while I work at home (laptop + amp) and have to stay "connected" to things like ringing phones, doorbells, family members, pets, etc. Sennheiser PX100s - Small on ear headphones that I can wear in public and are typically used without an amp. They collapse down kind of like eyeglasses for storage and don't make me look like a ham radio operator... Sennheiser CX300B - Followed the Sony earphones. Pretty good sound, terrible cord noise, weird popping/crackling when I insert them, pretty good comfort once in. Probably going away via Ebay. Shure SE210 - Went with these to address cord noise of CX300Bs, they are not as heavy bass wise. They project out from the ear more than I would like. Ebay worthy at this point as well. Which brought me to the purchase of the Westone 3s... First, I reviewed closed and open cans and decided that in ears were the way to go. Took a brief look at custom fit, maybe the 3s will go that route someday if possible. Candidates: Westone 3s, UE Triple fi 10 Pro, IE 40, SE530 Just kept cycling through write-ups, feature comparison, etc. Talked to the folks at your end as well as Westone. Why the 3s won: True 3 element design, eartip selection, rave reviews everywhere I looked, price point, (sub $400 is pretty much it for me) and close to ear design. Why I am very pleased so far: Comfort. Left the foams on for now, will try other tips over the next few days. Appearance. Very low profile. I wear glasses so I've been wearing them without looping the wires over the top of my ears. I get a bit more cord length and the is no cord to interact with the temple bars of my glasses. Cord. Quite, extremely limp design hangs great right out of the box with no "fold up memory" Sound. Tons of detail, very wide stage, frequency response, where has all of this sound been hiding? Price point. Don't know if this is an introductory price or not. Huge bang to buck ratio. The smile on my face may have to be surgically removed. Regards, Jim Contos Pros: Cons:
Simply the best there is out there. I have yet to purchase the custom impressions for these but with bi-flange sleeves, shure black foams, and comply standards these produce the best sound i've ever heard from any pair of canalphones. The UM2's simply do not compare in terms of balance, richness, and bass. A headphone amp is not even required to get most of the performance out of these. I would recommend these to anyone, they are priced right for what you get. Once again, a very happy buyer. Pros: Cons:
I purchased the W3's kind of on faith that the 3 drivers would improve the sound experience of my Shure SE530's. I can report that my expectations have been exceeded especially in the mid and bass ranges. I listen to mostly classical and even though I am really familiar with the music, with the W3's it is so much easier to hear the complex sonorities of a full orchestra and distinguish separate musical lines of the various instruments. Clarity. Clarity. Clarity. I'd thought the bass on the SE530's was really good. Now it sounds muddy in comparison to the W3s. I didn't really expect the hype to be true that some others have written that they could hear things in the music they hadn't before. But I have to say that I was surprised to discover an "extra" guitar track in a Leonard Cohen album I've listened to for years. And I thought I new that album inside and out. The one area I've chosen to "made an adjustment" is in the treble... but it's me, not the earphones. I prefer jarringly crisp treble. The W3's to my ears are balanced, and I prefer my treble slightly out of balance. Making a slightly brighter eq for the treble gave me exactly what I wanted. I couldn't be happier with the sound. I agree with a previous reviewer on this site that the flexible cords of the W3's are an improvement on the stiffer ones on the SE530's. I always worried about the Shure insulation cracking as the insulation aged and the the strain of on-and-off wearing took its toll. Unfortunately, just that very thing happened just before I bought the W3's and the SE530's have to go back for repair. I like being able to wind the W3 cord more easily without having to worry so much about this issue. Everyone's ears have different geometry. The W3's fit my ears slightly better than the SE530's but more importantly, the foam tips stay in my ear canals a lot better. Both earphones are comfortable, but I found myself adjusting the SE530's in a way that I just don't have to with the W3's. I now feel I have the most perfect earphones I've ever bought, and although they're expensive I don't have a single regret about the purchase. Pros: Cons:
I've had a pair of Westone UM2s for 2 years now. I thought the UM2s were the best until I tried the Westone 3s! Very balanced sound. At first, I thought the W3s were not as lound as the UM2s, then I realized that they didn't sound as loud because of the balance. They have very good seperation. I've heard instruments in songs that I didn't realize were there. Highly recommended. They are a big improvement in sound for only 100 dollars more than the UM2s. Pros: Cons:
Having used several Shure models, I find these to be a more comfortable fit, and a far superior sound. I love them and would recommend them to anybody who wants the best. Pros: Cons:
I've tried almost all the earphones out there, and settled on the UM2's. To me they sound the best by a substantial margin, and also are the most comfortable (except for the UM1 :). UM2 has always been in a class by itself in that it sounds incredibly NATURAL. Also the deep rich bass is a wonderful bonus. Other earphones strike me as either too tilted towards treble (artificially exaggerated treble detail) or towards bass, or, somehow just sounding less refined and natural. Now I've sold one of my UM2's and replaced it with the Westone 3. The 3 is a solid upgrade over the UM2. It has the same family sound - rich and natural - with slightly more extended and detailed treble and also slightly more extended and detailed bass. It strikes me as almost as comfortable as the UM2. I don't agree that the 3 "demolishes" the UM2. I strongly recommend UM2 and 3 at their respective price points, for the music fan that values comfort and a natural sound. Art ps: Break-in is important. Plug them into your iPod, put the iPod on repeat (careful with that volume!), and let it run 50 hours. Pros: Cons:
I am comparing the new Westone 3 to both Shure SE530 and E5C IEMâs all with the flange inserts using an iPod video. My first observation was that the cords were too thin, however, I soon discovered that the cord on the Westone 3 can be replaced! How nice since I just had to send my SE530âs in for the cracked cable problem. Shure did send me a brand new pair. After using them for a while, I completely reversed my opinion on the cords. They are much more easy to manage and hang much better providing more comfort than the SE530. I also much prefer the angled input jack of the Westone 3. As for appearance of the monitors, my first thought was that the Westone 3âs were not quite as sexy looking as the SE530âs and I thought that they would not provide as much comfort. In actuality, they are just a tad more comfortable than my SE530âs. Very nice fit. When I first started using them, I thought they sounded strange, however, this was only for a couple minutes. Maybe these need a short break in period??? I did a direct comparison between the Westone 3, SE530 and E5C listening to Vivaldiâs Four Seasons, Christmas Carols recorded by the Morman Tabernacle Choir, some hard rock (Buckethead), Rap and old Stones recordings. In all cases, the Westone 3 just sounded better. Much more range. You really notice a difference in the sound of cymbals for example. Also, the bass is much more powerful. All in all the depth of these IEMâs is just fantastic. I am really enjoying my new Westone 3 IEMâs. Thanks to Earphonesolutions.com for providing such wonderful service. The only disappointment I have is that they are not made in the US . Pros: Cons:
Eccellenti...sono tranquillamente paragonabili alle Shure SE530 che costano di piÃ¹; anzi il cavo Ã¨ molto piÃ¹ flessibile e meglio concepito di quello delle Shure (troppo rigido...tende a rompersi). Le consiglio vivamente. Pros: Cons:
My last earphones before I got the W3s were the Shure SE530PTH. The W3s are clearly the better earphones IMHO. They are stunningly musical and natural sounding, reach unbelievably deep down and on top of everthing offer great useability thanks to the super-mellow/flexible cable that you do not feel when wearing them and that can be rolled up to a very small roll. All in all a great earphone and it really gives me great pleasure. Heartily recommended! Pros: Cons:
Allow about 100 hrs for break in before rateing these. Once broken in they are outstanding. Pros: Cons:
I've used the UM2's for the last few years, and before that a Shure earbud and these things blow the UM 2 out of the water. Everything you've read it true - the fit is superb, the sound amazing and the cord is perfect. Because it's twisted strands, you don't hear sounds when you bump against it (when jogging for example) like the thicker Shure cables. Couldn't be happier with the purchase. They look great too. Great for working out or just deep listening - let the sound overtake you. Pros: Cons:
Iâm in music heaven. I have had and tried decent earbuds and headphones. As Earbuds go I have had the V-Moda Vibes as my everyday use and have tried the Shure 530âs for a month while working at a golf course mowing lawn. I will have to say I feel in love with the Shure 530âs the sound isolation was great specially when mowing LOL and the clean treble was awesome. There was no comparison to my crappy V-moda Vibes. Unfortunately I was not able to keep the Shures do to the price tag. So I was forced to go back to the V-modaâs O yeah not to mention I had to use the 1-year warranty 3 times. The wire split and the buds stopped working. Real quick I have also tried a cheaper pair of Shures, good but not enough bass, those were returned. Also Bose earbuds great sounding if you are in a very quit place all the time. They had absolutely no sound isolation. But yet sounded good. OK headphones I have tried the Sennheiser PX 100. Great headphones for the price but the sound leakage can wake people up. Same goes for the Grado SR125âs. I compared this headphones to the Westone 3âs and it litally took me about 5 secâs to get the Westones back in my ears. Bass and midrange took the cake hands down compared to the Grado SR125âs Ok that is the earbuds/headphones I have tried. Lets talk about the Westone 3âs. I will make this real easy BUY THEM. I received them about a week ago and was only able to use them with my laptop. The buds still sounded great yet I was getting a lot of feedback from my laptop. Do you think that stopped my addiction to listening to them every night, and I do mean every night after work? I had to listen to them, I wanted to hear all the sounds I was missing in almost every other earbud/headphones available. If you are going to be using the Westone 3âs with an MP3 play, I recived my first player today. After much research I went with the Sony NWZ-A729 do to all the reviews stating this MP3 player has amazing sound quality. I figured how could I not buy the best MP3 player to go with the best earbuds. The sound is unexplainable but I will try. Bass? I have an 12â JL Audio in my car, I could literally compare the tight responsive bass from this 12â sub to these tiny earbuds. Midrange? Amazing, present and keeps listening pleasant with no ear fatigue. Treble? This is my favorite part because usually when you have earbuds/headphones you either get bass or Treble. Well not anymore Bass and midrange are great and you may think great no Treble and then all of a sudden they releases the treble and you smile. It is all there. I LOVE the Westoneâs. I have been listening to them while writing this review and I donât want to take them out. Remember how I returned my Shure 530âs, you think I am returning the Westones? These are worth every penny and I will NOT be returning them, THEY ARE MINE GET YOUR OWN TRUST ME. Sorry so long I just had to speak my mind on such a amazing creation. Iâm in music heaven. Pros: Cons:
The Westone 3 did to my UM1 what the UM1 did to other earphones. It made my UM1 sound like some cheap earphones. The UM1 made me hear music that normal earphones couldnt and I thought that was pretty impressive, save for a weak bass. The W3 showed me music that my UM1 couldnt show, coupled with the clarity and rich bass. Now I'm not audiophile, but when I tested the W3, I was shaking and totally blown away. I was rather skeptical when reviews rated the W3 as the number 1 IEM, but now I have to totally agree after hearing it with my own ears. While the UM2 was slightly clearer sounding with stronger bass than the UM1, I didnt feel that it was that much better than I had to have it. When I listened to the W3, I just knew I NEED to get it. The improvement over the UM1 and 2 is trememdous. Totally worth the price for the superb quality Pros: Cons:
Before I purchased the Westone 3, I was really worried how the sound quality would be like, as I have never tried them before and I was satisfied with my UM1. However, after I received the Westone 3 and put them into my ears, I knew immediately that I made a wise choice. All of a sudden, the sound quality of my "very good UM1" became stuffy and imbalanced. Sound from Westone 3 is very clear and layered, as if you were listening to a live concert at a concert hall!! I personally prefer slightly stronger bass and weaker treble in which UM1 was perfect for me that I found Westone 3 a little too sharp in the beginning. But once I have got used to the clarity and detailed sound output from Westone 3, I do not think I could go back to my UM1 be as satisfied as before. In terms of comfortableness, it is as good as the UM1, especially that you have a great variety of earplugs to choose for your personal preference. The soundproof would, however, be depended on the earplug that you use. All in all, the price is totally worth it. Pros: Cons:
These are certainly the best headphines I've ever heard. Probably overkill for some but if you really enjoy the music and it's not just background noise, you can't go wrong with these. Solid workmanship and unbeatable clarity ... A new high-water mark. Pros: Cons:
For the last week I have compared my E530s to my new 3's, unamped out of my Iphone 3g and then amped out of my predator via ALO silver from a Nano using my best samples on my train commute into my office. I have used my Shures now every day for almost 2 years as I bought them when they first came out. i have considered them to be the best of the best for sound, fit and finish. I tried the Triple Fis and neither the fit or signature ever did it for me. There is nothing I have heard to date the sounds better across the spectrum in universal fit IEMS than the 3âs. The 3s, IMO beat the E530s across the board and yes again IMO even in the mids.. the highs are the best I have heard to date (over an ER4P or S), the bottom is just superb and the fit in my ear with the mid soft flex tips is about as perfect as I have found to date. I like the olives but they get messed up and the soft flexes seem to slip in and out easy with a solid feel. I wear these 5 days a week for 3-4 hours. I alternated IEMS on the routes out and back for 5 days with amped and unamped samples. There was not a song or a day that the 3s didnt clearly come out on top and I was really hoping they were close out of courtesy to my faithful Shures. Unamped they both can be driven just fine off an IPhone, amped they both sound better in the bottom end and presence and depth of field along with imaging seem to improve, but not like an amp makes say a Senn or Beyer stand out. Both are very comfortable, but I would have to say that after an hour the Westones just completely disappear.. the Shures you always know are there but stay comfortable. Both have good isolation, but again the Westones for me using soft flex tips beat out the Shures with Olives (my previous favorites). I just received my new E530s as a return, courtesy of Shure, and gave them to a friend at work who would appreciate them, they were on top of their game 2 years ago and right up until Westone started to ship the 3, I have respect for both companies and what they accomplished. It seems like a lot of fan fair for the Westones like there was for the Shures when they came out.. but in my mind there is clearly a new champion for universal fit IEMS, regardless of driver count or cost, these 3âs are just superb. Every IEM I have listened to has holes, My new X10s, ER4P/S, E530, IM760 all of them.. The 3âs just do everything so well and I cannot tell where the cross over points are none of the 3 armatures stand out, they all just work flawlessly together and I get the crisp highs, the smooth mids and the tight bottom end that I have been looking for. I wont be actively looking for another IEM like I have been these past 2 yearsâ¦ I could actually get used to wearing these at home more in place of my full sized cans (RS1, D2000,650, DT880 and 770) they are that good, something I would never have considered with my E530s. Again, hats off to Westone for taking the heat and waiting to get these right, its clear that everything they wanted is in the final product. Superb product and easily worth the full price of 399. Compared to even discounted prices for the 530 they are a great value. Pros: Cons:
Since buying a pair of Shure E3's back in the day I've been happy to check out the latest and greatest pair of in-ear earbuds. This has basically meant my climbing the Shure ladder to the SE530's. Which until now have been my favorite pair. That is until I picked up a pair of the Westone 3's. Same big sound as as SE530's but with an overall cleaner and tighter sound. This will probably only make sense to Shure fans but imagine taking the best of the SE420 and SE530 and putting it together. That's what the Westone 3's are like to me. The Westone 3's offer full, big, and rich sound without ever sounding "loose". Highs are clean, the mids pop, and the base pounds just the way I would want. Very comfortable, probably more so than the competing Shure products mostly because the attached cables are so thin and light. Though I suppose this does give the Westone 3's a feeling of being more fragile. Pros: Cons:
I have tried or owned just about all of the top rated and/or popular earphones over the past 2 years. I have a very long review of the Westone 3 linked below, and they simply crush the competition: http://www.earphonesolutions.com/reofwe3bylag.html Pros: Cons:
Wow, I am impressed! These sound really good. When I need headphones, I am used to reaching for my Sony 7506's, but obviously these are not the best match to a portable music player. I have been looking for some good in ear earphones for a while after returning a set of Etymotic 6i's that I absolutely hated. I also tried some Shure E3c's and didn't care for those either... The UM3's showed up today, and even after some limited listening, I am very impressed. Nice balanced output with outstanding clarity. And they are comfortable to wear! With the foam tips you can barely feel them. I might still look into custom mold for them though. I thought I might be able to use my existing musician plugs, but they don't match up. The molded part would have to be limited to the section that fits in your ear canal. A friend of mine A-B them against his top of the line Future Sonic in ear monitors and said they sound at least as good as his (which cost $900). For the money they can't be beat. Pros: Cons:
Westone Announcement sent to Earphone Solutions in March 2007: "45 + 20 = 3 ...Many customers dissatisfied with the comfort or retention of their stock earbuds have opted to see a hearing care professional for custom adapter earpieces. Others, frustrated that they cannot appreciate the full fidelity of the music with stock earbuds, have upgraded to higher end universal earphones such as our UM1 and UM2, and even the custom ES1 and ES2. Looking at this trend, we took note that our existing line of music products was designed, and the sound shaped, for the performance musician. But an on-stage musician looks for something a little different in their sound than an audiophile would. With that thought in mind, we have developed the new Westone 3, a true three-way universal fit earphone, featuring separate low, mid and high frequency drivers in each earpiece. The sound accuracy and frequency range is unbelievable. The feedback we've received from testing has been very encouraging and there is already a lot of positive "buzz" for the product appearing in online blogs and forums... We are certainly excited about the positive feedback for the Westone 3 and its potential in the market. (By the way, if you have been wondering about the arithmetic in our headline, don't worry - it's not more "new math" that you'll need to learn. It's just marketing speak for "The new Westone 3 is the result of over 45 years of making products for the human ear and 20 years of involvement in the music industry.") Pros: Cons:
Question & Answers
Questions on Westone B30 3-Driver Earphone Extended Bass
Is this a replacement for the Westone 3? If yes, is it essentially an updated version with removable cable and same sound signature?
- Tech Support answered:
- In interview with Karl Cartwright in mid May 2014, he stated that the new W30 is the model that had the most work done. It was a "clean-sheet design" as he was not personally happy with the "fun" adjective often used to describe the sound of the W3. So he worked really hard on this project to make sure the W30 had an accurate sound. The bass was "more controlled" on the W30. The objective was to get a flat smooth response that would render the utmost fidelity to the original recording. For that different drivers were used, completely different crossover tuning and overall acoustics were changed. We listened to the new W30 and we find the sound quality to be quite superior than the predecessor W3.
is the W30 the same mold at the W3's?
- Tech Support answered:
- Yes, they are the same size and fit the same way.