Universals VS customs IEMs

Discussion in 'Recording/Live Sound' started by mike_miller, Jan 25, 2012.

  1. mike_miller

    mike_miller Member

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    Hi guys,

    I would like to get some feedback from people using IEMs for live monitoring.. is there a vast difference between universal and customs IEMs? (Considering the fact that we compare both being triple-driver iems.)

    Besides the fit, would there be a difference in terms of sound quality if you are using it live for monitoring?

    Cheers!
     
  2. ldizzle

    ldizzle Supporting Member

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    yes. customs will facilitate better sound due to no loss of sound from poor fitting foams.

    ..but honestly i still use foams because its not THAT big of a difference.
     
  3. rickenbackerkid

    rickenbackerkid Member

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    I have had both and I can honestly say that customs are in a world on their own. Sound, comfort, quality, it's all miles ahead of universals.

    Universals keep losing their seal, so half the time, you aren't getting the full quality of sound. Customs sit right and stay sealed, so you get the full bass.

    I love my 1964-T. great stuff.
     
  4. jrm

    jrm Member

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    We've been on in-ears for a couple years now at my church. We started off with universals and upgraded to customs. The difference is huge (IMO). The sound quality is much better, the isolation is better, the bass is better (due to the seal created), etc... The multiple drivers improve the sound quality and separation greatly. The comfort of customs is far better than universals as well.

    I've got a set of Westone ES3 and Westone ES5. I love them both. A few times I've forgotten them at home and had to press into use a set of Westone UM2. Though the UM2 are very nice, the difference is very noticeable and I can't wait to get my customs back in.

    Good luck! They are worth every penny to me. An added bonus is how awesome they are to travel with. With 25db of ambient sound attenuation, I never have to hear another screaming baby on a plane!
     
  5. VicAjax

    VicAjax Male Supermodel

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    you can also easily get custom molds made for just about any universal IEM. might save a couple hundred bucks that way, if you need to.
     
  6. KidArchitect

    KidArchitect Member

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    Hopefully I'm not hijacking this thread (I think it's on topic) - but, I'm currently using Westone UM2s.

    Was considering getting the custom tips made - UM56s - does anyone have experience with these? Worth the extra $100? At practice the foams seem fine, but on stage, it's loud as hell, so I'm having to turn up my in ears a bit more than i'd like to...
     
  7. twotoneguitars

    twotoneguitars Member

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    Definitely molded IEM. With universals the sound is sill entering your ear from "outside". With molds it's like the sound originates inside your head, so the music sort of becomes you. It's weird at first, but a glorious weird, and then you get used to being one with the music and you wonder why you didn't get molds sooner.
     
  8. mike_miller

    mike_miller Member

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    Thanks for the feedback guys.. I would probably go for 1964 iems then.. since they seem to be cheaper (or almost) than the shures se535. Westones or JHs seems to be really expensive. One question though, is it common to get a misfit the first time round with custom IEMs?
     
  9. walterw

    walterw Gold Supporting Member

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    huh.

    i'm using the UM-3Xs with the regular shure ball tips, and there's plenty of isolation, so i don't have to be loud in my ears at all.

    i get a little drum leakage, but it just serves to let me skip putting drums in my mix, while still protecting me. (i pull the ears out on stage and it's like a jet plane taking off by comparison!)
     
  10. jrm

    jrm Member

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    Mike, I've had three different sets of in-ears made and I've never had an issue with a misfit. Just make sure that you find a good audiologist! Sometimes you can call the manufacturer and ask if they have an audiologist in your area that they recommend. They might be able to direct you to a person who does really good molds.
     

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