Review Westone UM3x RC “Sweet Old Champion” (English Review)

Writer : Mikku

Cans : Westone UM3X RC (RC stands for Removable Cable)
Driver : Triple Balanced Armature, 3 crossovers
Price : Discontinued item, around 300$ in secondhand market
Technical spec :
Sensitivity: 124dB/mW
Frequency Response: 20Hz-18kHz
Impedance: 56 OHMS

I still remember the first time I tried um3x around 4 years ago, back then my best iem is only a VSD3S and I was blown away by how good um3x is, how smooth their housings are and how comfortable they fit in my ears….. and now they are so rare that it’s kinda hard to find them, fortunately I got em from a best friend in an excellent condition, in fact he is lending em to me and before I know.. I already fall in loave with them again and decided to buy em.

I have tried so many kind of iems and for me right now they suit me the best, I’ll tell you the reason later, but I need to tell you that I can’t help but feel sad knowing that they are a discontinued product, and I have tried latest westone’s iem from um pro series, am pro series, and their W series, for me personally none of em could replace the um3x
Build & Ergonomics :

They are made of sturdy looking plastic and damn yeah they are durable, I gotta say they have more convincing feels than shure’s (except the mighty 846) their small yet long nozzle is thicker and even the housing feels thicker, they are using 2 pin connection which is my favorite connector for iems (I have some problems with mmcx, after almost half a year all of em faced a same problem, the connectors are starting to get jiggly and somehow losing the sound connection), and unfortunately all of westone’s new products are using mmcx

Ergonomic is just brilliant, fit so good in your ears, and isolates very well, all of westone’s product are brilliant in this area

(comparison with another iem, iems on the photos : UM3x, W4R, StageDiver4, LCD i4), also show how it fits so well with my ears

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fit perfectly with my small ears (i’m using linum music cable in this photo)

Sound :

I use my simple XDuuo X10 as my primary source and using wide genres of music, starting from k-pop like taeyeon and BTS, Japanese anime songs, to western pop such as owl city and even western rock like linkin park, some orchestra song like Hans Zimmer’s and acoustic like depapepe’s and vocal jazz like Diana Krall also opera singer like Il divo and Josh Groban

Low : how should I put it…. It is VERY controlled with a good amount of punch, it is definitely much bigger than neutral but they are tight and fast, hearing Pentatonix’s “can’t hold us” is pure bliss, every deep note is portrayed in a very detailed and somehow exciting way, more punch in the mid bass area but they could dig quite deep. For those basshead who loves their bass details, you gotta try this product for sure

Mid  : well I always believe that balanced armature has its own forte in this region compared to other type of iem drivers such as electrostatic, planar, and the conventional dynamic, in my experience a properly tuned balanced armature iems could produce the smoothest midrange, giving zero peaks at all, for example the famous fitear togo 334, cypherlabs c6iem, and this um3x, all of em are warm, smooth yet clear, they have zero upper mid peaks that makes vocal sound incredibly smooth and non fatiguing, yet somehow lacks the emotion from some singer that definitely needs a little bit of peak to sound powerful such as Celine Dion and Andrea Bocelli’s “The Prayer” sounds a little bit dull and not as powerful as I would’ve want. But for those who needs detailed smooth vocal, these are perfect, even badly recorded music will sounds smooth and addicting (trust me, thanks to its smoothness I began to hear more of my old audio collections again)

High : one of its weakest point, I guess the keyword of um3x sound is “non fatiguing” and it is portrayed In all of its aspects, good midbass punch but not too big, buttery smooth vocal, and yes…. Smooth treble indeed, but don’t get me wrong.. they are not as rolled off as c6iem or 334 v1, but retain a good amount of treble to make acoustic music sounds laidback yet still natural, I guess it’s really genius… but yes if you’re a hardcore of instruments.. skip this one they don’t have enough extension and presence to deliver emotions from classical or orchestra music.

The overall signature of um3x is smooth and non fatiguing, an L shaped freq response with rolloff at upper mids

technicality:

It is actually quite detailed, but its darkness hides the truth, as well as soundstage and imaging, they’re not wide nor deep, they are intimate ad narrow, I find the layering aspect to be actually great, so yeah it’s a mixed feeling in this department

But I would say that one would buy this because of tonal aspect not technicality

Comparison :
VS Westone 4R : two of em share a similar traits like very good ergonomics, non  fatiguing upper mid and treble but that being said, 4R has wider soundstage and more recessed vocals, making a mild U shaped sound, UM3x’s bass hits harder and more detailed

VS Inear SD4 : SD4 is more V shaped but in technical department like both upper and lower extension, imaging, soundstage SD4 is much better, yet UM3x is more punchy in mid bass, more forward low mids and more roll off upper treble, making the sound so much smoother and forgiving

VS UM Pro 30 : actually they are more similar than different, but somehow um pro isn’t as smooth as the um3x… although um pro indeed has the larger soundstage yet the vocals feels less fluid than the original um3x

VS W30 japan edition : W is more V shaped, giving more punch in the mid bass and more recessed vocal , also it adds more sparkle in the upper end, it is a totally different iem

VS W50 : W50 has even more body and punch in the bass, giving an even darker signature, and more bass bleed to the midrange, it is a basshead iem, they are just as smooth

Pros: ergonomics, non fatiguing sound, creamy smooth vocal, detailed bass

Cons: discontinued, rolloff upper mid – treble, a bit claustrophobic

Reccomended Genres : vocal, mainstream pop

Score
Build : 9/10
Fit : 9/10
Bass : 9/10
Mid : 9/10
Treble : 7/10
Detail : 7/10
Soundstage : 5/10
Imaging : 5/10
Value : 8/10

Rank: B

 

 

 

 

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