Initial impressions: Unique Melody Mason v3

Introduction

The Mason v3 is the flagship of the Unique Melody line. It is designed to be the technical master of the line-up. It doesn’t disappoint. These are my first impressions off the Head-Fi Official European Unique Melody Mason v3 and Mentor v3 Tour. I posted an unboxing gallery here, and impressions of the Mentor v3 here. If you are looking for reviews of other Unique Melody gear like the Miracle v2 or the ME.1, click the links.

Impressions

  • The demo version on hand is another dreamweaver edition. This one with a kind of teal-turquoise shade. It’s also very nice, but not quite as cool looking as the colour of the year, ultraviolet.

  • The cable with the Mason v3 is grey and black. I wonder if the blue and grey one that was with the Mentor v3 could included instead.
  • Starting with the copper and bass turned forward. On How do You Want it bass is less forward than Mentor but a bit more textured and defined. Individual vocals have more definition and separation on the Mason V3. Extension is just as good as the Mentor, but emphasis is different.

  • On Why? – As a Card. Violins are really beautiful. Vocals are dryer and clearer with more character than Mentor. Oooh, the Silver cable improves that resolution fuller. Vocal character even better. Brilliant.
  • Listening to Grandaddy – Now it’s On, I discover that the bass switch is more apparent if you listen to the leaner bass for a bit and then turn it up in the middle of a bass line. That’s the good stuff.
  • I still prefer with the bass up a bit on many tracks. Extension on the bass is really good.
  • I really love the mids and treble presentation. It is incredibly transparent. Absolutely fantastic resolution. Great separation and a really broad and well-defined stage. The stage on this is more like a rectangular box with a little bit more height than the Mason and more depth at the 4 rear corners.
  • As with the Mentor, the stage width is really really impressive.

  • Switching to the copper cable gives a smoother signature. Bass is less textured and treble is tamed a little bit. Modest Mouse – Black Cadillacs is a touch bright with the silver cable. The treble presentation is better on this track with the copper, though I miss some of the extra texture and definition in the bass from the silver cable.
  • I love the tuning options. My initial favourite was silver cable with bass boosted.
  • With a little time I noted that opening up the DB-GO valve gives more air and definition to the mids, along with some extra separation without really loosing the bass character, just a little bit of bass quantity. It’s masterfully done. Some tracks I like closed, some I like open. Having the option is pretty excellent.
  • I just love these IEMs. I’m closing my eyes and just grooving to Boys Age – Else. It’s got more resolution than I’ve ever heard on this track. It’s like it’s been released from an unknown cage. The instrument separation is so excellent. The tapestry is just so darn rich with detail.
  • Absolutely superb layering.
  • Included silicone eartips are really good. Very comfortable. I used them for all testing.
  • Everything I listen to just has a bit more stage and separation than I’ve gotten from in-ears when listening to my non-audiophile tracks.
  • Gorgeous ambiance.
  • Tried these out of Questyle QP2R also. Can be played out of the balanced out with minimal hiss, but sounds it’s best when using the iFi iEMatch2.5 in high mode, with high gain, and high bias.
  • I’ve been listening to non-review tracks, meaning tracks that I still have something to discover for the better part of eight hours, and in almost every song I’m discovering new textures, instrument placement, tonal swells with full timing intact, pure unadulterated bliss on almost every track.

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