Hello. Something new today.
Today I will be reviewing the Westone 3.
First, a disclaimer: I am by no means a true blue audiophile. I can discern between a good and bad pair of earphones, I can tell the difference in sound between a 128 kbps MP3 and 320 kbps MP3, but I cannot tell the difference between a copper and silver wire (in terms of sounds), or an Mp3 file from an uncompressed FLAC file.
Previously, I have owned mostly Ultimate Ears earphones (before they merged with Logitech). I am familiar with the Triple Fi 10, the Super Fi 5, the Super Fi 5 Extended Bass, and the Super Fi 3.
I am currently using a pair of Ultimate Ears Super Fi 5 Extended Bass, which has been reshelled by Unique Melody. That is to say the original casing has been changed into a mould that has been custom fit to my ears.
This pair of earphones were the most bassy pair of earphones in the world. Dual driver hybrid- a mix of a balanced armature and a dynamic driver.
Oh right, technical jargon. You can google it, but basically these are two types of “mini-speakers”, if you will, that drive sound through your earphones. A balanced armature driver allows for greater sensitivity, but lacks in low frequency sound, meaning that it lacks in bass. A dynamic driver works the opposite, allowing less sensitivity which it makes up for in “boomier” bass.
Therefore, if you compare two single-driver earphones, a one with the balanced armature will deliver sound with punchier bass, meaning that for soundtracks with constant deep bass, you would hear bass that is constantly thumping, as compared to the dynamic driver earphone, where the bass would be “stretched”, meaning that the bass would have that reverberating quality to it.
Like a grossly overweight person having their love handles flapping in the wind.
Sorry for the imagery.
Oh right, introducing the Westone 3!
The Westone 3s are a triple balanced armature driver universal in ear headphones. Three balanced armature diver- one for the highs, one for the mids, and one for the lows (bass).
Or in simple English, damn good earphones.
I’ve been using my custom earphones for a while now, and one thing that nagged me was that the dynamic drivers, while great for booming bass, was fatiguing. I could not keep the earphones on for too long, as my ears would grow tired from the excessive booming of the low frequencies.
My custom earphones always seem to shake my eardrums so hard I can sometimes feel my earwax being shaken out.
I’ve been eyeing a pair of Westone 3s for a while. Heard and read great reviews about them, but the price was the only thing keeping me away from it. So, I jumped at the opportunity to own a pair which I saw for cheap.
Putting them on, the first thing that struck me was the bass. It was not as heavy and fatiguing, but it was adequate. The bass response was extremely good- the thumps were fast, responsive, and I wasn’t reminded of a overweight exhibitionist brandishing his lard chops in the wind.
It was like a seasoned boxer, giving quick one-two jabs of bass into my eargina. Fisting. It was an orgasm of sound.
Furthermore, the highs and mids, which were usually obscured by the biblical amount of bass in my custom earphones, showed itself in the Westones. It gave greater clarity to my music, and there were details that I have never heard in my music that I heard using these earphones.
The high frequencies were not shrill, not too overpowering. So were the mids. The Westones, which had a dedicated driver for each of the range of frequencies, mean that none of the sounds were needlessly overpowering. It was a refreshing, clear, and somewhat spunky sound compared to the almost dull, muddy thumps of my custom earphones.
Caveats? Well, I’ve been with this pair of earphones for about a month now, and one of the things that are bothering me is the lack of detachable cables. My customs came with detachable cables. I am not a careful person. As much as I try, I sometimes am a colossal oaf. My earphone cables often catch onto doors, or seats or whatever I happen to be in the general vicinity of. To spend so much on a pair of earphones, I would have hoped that Westone would at least make detachable cables for them.
Side note- I think the Westone 3s have been discontinued. Their successor, the Westone W30, comes with detachable cables. It is also maternally fornicatingly expensive.
Which brings me tot he other caveat- the Westone 3s, if can still get them, are also goddamn expensive. I only bought them because I found a pair at a bargain, at second hand prices.
So, if you are someone who cannot tell the difference between a 30 bucks earphone from a 300 bucks earphone, this is definitely not for you. Borrow them from me if you want, and discern for yourself if you want to get a pair. Even then, I do not recommend getting them at their full retail price.
Disclaimer: This is not a sponsored post. I bought this glob of jizz with my own shekels.