Whether you’re a student, an athlete, or just a person who loves music, you cannot deny that headphones are an essential a part of your daily life, right?
Young and old alike have used headphones for different purposes. Some use it for professional uses, especially musicians.
But, some people simply use it to relax and listen to good music.
In this age of technology, smartphones cannot exist without its own pair of headphones.
Two promising products exist in the market right now: Shure SE535 and Westone UM Pro 30.
But, which of these products deserve your ear?
What You Really Want
There are a lot of headphones for sale nowadays. Most of them are offered at low prices. However, low-priced products often go along with cheap quality.
Whether you like it or not, seeing cheap headphones online is a bait.
As a person, you have different uses for headphones. In this Shure SE535 vs. Westone UM Pro 30 review, the type of headphones that will be compared are in-ear headphones. In-ear headphones or earbuds are headphone types that go inside your ear.
Not all in-ear headphones promise good quality. The first problem in choosing in-ear headphones is whether the earbud stays in your ear during prolonged use. Take for example a person who goes for a jog every morning. Jogging requires continuous movement, and these movements can sometimes cause earbuds to fall out. That’s not a good thing, right?
Another example is a student who is studying for a final exam. This student listens to music to maintain focus.
Of course, the earbuds should isolate background noise. And sometimes, you hear a vibration when the earbud cable hit your shirt.
But what if the earbuds can’t isolate noise properly? A good earbud should isolate background noise properly.
Why? It’s because instead of feeling relaxed or focused with your earbuds on, you’d feel irritated because the background noise interferes with the music you’re listening to.
Earbud users also face this unspoken truth: after prolonged use, earbuds can feel itchy already. Most earbuds for sale really don’t offer a cleaning tool. And it would be really a plus factor if a cleaning tool is included.
In addition, earbuds break if it has been used for quite some time.
But what if it the cable gets cut in two? Can the cables be replaced or repaired at the least? That’s an underlying problem.
The weight of the earbuds is also a problem. Prolonged use of earbuds can create a strain in your ear canal. For people who rely on earbuds to isolate unnecessary noise, strains can affect their productivity.
In this Shure SE535 vs. Westone UM Pro 30 review, you’ll see that these problems will be addressed with how Shure SE535 and Westone UM Pro 30 solves these earbud obstacles that earbud-users experience.
What You Need to Know Beforehand
Before buying earphones, you need to know the basics first. This Shure SE535 vs. Westone UM Pro 30 review will incorporate these specs in the review below.
- Frequency response – this is how a device responds to changes in frequencies. Frequencies are measured in Hertz (Hz). High frequencies determine the quality of the treble. Low frequencies determine the quality of the bass.
- Impedance – it is the electricity consumption of the earphone, or how the earphone converts electrical signals to acoustical signals. Devices that have headphone jacks have different amplifications. Earbuds have different impedance levels; and the higher the impedance, the stronger amplification it can handle.
- Sensitivity – sometimes called sound pressure level, it is how the earbud increases sound pressure and compensates with the frequency.
What You Should Be Looking For
Of course, you want something that is worth your money. You don’t want to spend two hundred bucks or more for low-quality earbuds that have a useful life of six months or less.
A good pair of earbuds can last for a year at least. Below are some qualitative factors that will you should consider in looking for the best headphones that will suit your preference.
- Portability. An earbud is portable if it has a case and can be easily packed. Do the cables tangle easily? Can the case fit in your pocket or purse?
- Comfortability. Some people use earbuds for long periods of time. Earbuds, in particular, are in-ear headphones. Does the size of the earbud make your ear feel worn out? Does the earbud fall out easily from your ear? Is the earbud too big or too small?
- Sound isolation. Earbuds nowadays compete with sound isolation, and most people prefer earbuds that can isolate background noise. Earbud manufacturers isolate sound by physically creating a barrier to block background noise. Can you still hear loud background noises when wearing the earbud? Are background noises still too loud?
What Shure SE535 has to Offer
- "-CL" designates the product's color variation (clear).
- Triple high-definition drivers deliver spacious sound and rich bass for cinematic audio in a convenient and portable package.
- Detachable cable system enables multiple connectivity options for long-term device compatibility, upgrades, and ease of maintenance.
- Sound Isolating design blocks up to 37 dB of outside noise for immersive listening no matter where you are.
- Secure, over-the-ear configuration keeps earphones in place and cables out of the way for unmatched, long-wearing comfort.
The Shure SE535 has been around since 2010. Below are the pros and cons of the SE535:
- Shure released a Lightning Cable Option for their SE535s for the latest iPhone 7. In fact, a Shure representative stated that the company has been working with this lightning cable option ever since rumors of the “jackless” iPhone became viral.
- Shure hails the SE535 for its active noise cancellation. The product’s package contains a set of ear tips with various sizes. With this feature in SE535, people, especially students who need to focus for their final exams, can now maintain their focus.
- The sound of SE535 is splendid. Not to mention its bass. SE535’s bass is rich and solid. It has a realistic sound and gives the user a reason to use it more. Running with a low frequency of 18 Hertz (Hz), high frequency of 19000 Hz, SE535 produces a clear sound that doesn’t need full volume to hear, thanks to its 119 decibels (dB) of sensitivity. You’re hearing good music that is not really damaging your hearing.
- The best feature of SE535 is its replaceable cable. You can replace a broken cable because it’s detachable.
- It contains a cleaning tool and an airplane adapter.
- SE535 is pricey and it is not something that you just toss in your bag.
- It has a low impedance level. The SE535 is at high risk of blowouts if connected to devices that have high amplification.
What Westone UM Pro 30 Has to Offer
- TRIPLE BALANCED-ARMATURE DRIVERS WITH THREEWAY CROSSOVER: The UM Pro 30 features three proprietary balanced-armature drivers with a 3-way passive crossover and is our most popular IEM. Designed for performing musicians, the UM Pro 30 has a soundstage that features powerful lows, articulate mid-range, and crystal-clear highs. The UM Pro 30 has the performance, power, and output for any stage and will meet the demands of the most discerning musician and music lover alike.
- THE MOST COMPACT, LOW PROFILE, ERGONOMIC DESIGN IN THE WORLD: Designed and built to perform in the most demanding environments, the compact, low-profile, ergonomic design of the UM Pro 30 is incredibly comfortable, and can be worn for hours and hours. Westone's silicone and comfort foam eartips enhance the performance of our IEMs by providing superior noise isolation and ensuring a superb fit.
- TWISTED MMCX AUDIO CABLE: Westone's professional-quality MMCX Audio Twisted Cable is manufactured using high-strength, high-flex, ultra-low resistance tensile wire, which is reinforced with a special aramid fiber. Twisted to help reduce cable noise and keep the cable light-weight, flexible, and comfortable, our cable features MMCX Audio Connectors and 3.5mm stereo plug. Built to withstand the rigors of the road, Westone's MMCX Audio Cable is perfect for use on-stage, or for personal listening
- TECHNICAL SPECS: The Westone UM Pro 30 features three balanced-armature drivers and a 3-way passive crossover, with 124 dB @ 1mW sensitivity, 20Hz - 18kHz frequency response, and an impedance of 57 ohms @ 1kHz
- IN THE BOX + WARRANTY: Purchase includes; 1 pair Westone UM Pro 30 In-Ear Monitors, MMCX Audio Twisted Cable, 5 pair Patented STAR Silicone Eartips, 5 pair TRUE-FIT Comfort Foam Eartips, Impact-Resistant Monitor Vault, Cleaning Tool, and a 2-year warranty. Connectivity Technology: Wired
Westone UM Pro 30 has some bullets to fire in this review. UM Pro 30 wins two things–for sure–in this review: comfort and portability.
- UM Pro 30 units contain ear tips made of foam and silicone. The foam ear tips are gentle to the ears.
- Another win for UM Pro 30 is its memory wire feature in cables. It solves the tangling problem of most earbud products. In fact, the memory wire of UM Pro 30 is not metallic or plastic. It’s made of soft rubber.
- The UM Pro 30 package also includes a cleaning tool. It is a great help in maintaining the quality of the ear tips.
- UM Pro 30 has a monitor vault. This serves as a case for the earphones when not in use. Westone’s monitor vault is weather resistant, thus making it ideal for backpackers. The monitor vault contains an O-ring to keep the cables tidy. This is another plus point for the UM Pro 30 in this Shure SE535 vs. Westone UM Pro 30 review.
- It has detachable cable wires like the SE535.
- Unfortunately, the UM Pro 30’s sound can sometimes be thick. It’s hard to differentiate the instruments, especially the bass.
- UM Pro 30’s high sometimes lack presence. The highs are precise, but the mids and the lows overpower it most of the time.
- Using UM Pro 30’s foam is not performing well for noise cancellation.
- It has a high impedance which makes it a disadvantage for smartphones. This high impedance consumes more electricity.
However, UM Pro 30’s cables are also detachable like Shure’s SE535.
In fact, Shure’s detachable cable has become a standard for most detachable earbud cables. With detachable cables on both products, it is a tie for this review.
The Verdict: Shure SE535 vs. Westone UM Pro 30
For this review, both products showed good features. But, Shure SE535 wins this comparison.
The SE535 model showed flexibility as it provided a lightning cable option for iPhone users. It also provides an airplane adapter, which gives SE535 a plus factor.
Aside from that, the SE535’s sound is better compared to the UM Pro 30. Choosing the right earbud tip can make SE535’s active noise cancellation more effective.
The availability of various ear tips can help you find the right size. With the right size, there is a low chance that the earbud will fall out on its own.
SE535 is safe to the ears because of its low sensitivity level compared to the UM Pro 30. This can help protect your hearing. Also, it can deliver a crisper and clearer sound even at a lower volume.
And Just like what we reviewed for the Westone UM Pro 10 vs. Shure SE215, Shure is always expensive but as always quality can defeat even the highest price tags!
The Shure SE535 wins this Shure SE535 vs. Westone UM Pro 30 comparison review. Though SE535 is a bit pricey, the quality it gives is worth your price.
- Editor Rating
- Rated 5 stars
- Shure SE535 vs. Westone UM Pro 30: Which is the Better Option?
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Looking for an earbud that's worth your money? Read this Shure SE535 vs. Westone UM Pro 30 and know what earbud is best for you.