Advanced AcousticWerkes W900 Reference Hybrid CIEM – Extended Aural Immersion

Build Quality, Design and Fit

Electing to choose a rather vivid design combination, we were a little apprehensive of how they would look in real life. The time of unveiling gave rise to a moment of elation as all our fears were put to rest. Advanced Acousticwerkes W900 Reference Hybrid CIEM

AAW have produced a bold design masterpiece, the aqua pearl chips shimmering with a myriad of reflections, which are somewhat hypnotic to observe as the colours flicker and change with rays of dancing light. Advanced Acousticwerkes W900 Reference Hybrid CIEM

The copper flakes in the right shell are well placed and give the illusion of the shell being heavier, it is easy to identify the right shell. Advanced Acousticwerkes W900 Reference Hybrid CIEM

A conscious choice of reddish colour selected.

The mother of pearl faceplates have a strong pink undertone, tilting them to reflect the light gives the unmistakable iridescent shimmer associated with this special material. Advanced Acousticwerkes W900 Reference Hybrid CIEM

My experience with many custom earphones has not been the best, in terms of historic fit issues but I am delighted to say that the work done by AAW on these is exceptional. These fit flush and tight without being painful or too deep. An excellent seal is achieved.

Like most professional custom earphone makers AAW offer a refit service to ensure you get exactly what you expect. This was achieved for me straight away with the excellent work carried out by their team and no refit was needed.

The shells had no imperfections at all that I could identify and the acrylic used is strong and has a high quality feel. Everything is really smooth and polished, no seam edges protruding. Each ear nozzle have the bore holes set back a little, leaving a little pocket/hollow. Advanced Acousticwerkes W900 Reference Hybrid CIEM

This is intentional, as the geniuses at AAW have designed a set of different filters to assist with tuning preferences.

Instead of simply using acoustic filters to adjust the amplitude in these frequencies, the hollow space above the nozzle will take these tunable filters to influence how the treble and upper-mid range presents itself.  There is a very interesting feature that I don’t believe any other CIEM has currently.

The filters were not complete at the time of this review but I will be getting them as soon as they are finalised (very soon I am advised), so I will update my impressions and experiences when I get them.

The tunable filters will only be available for the CIEM versions as there is simply not enough space in the universal versions to accommodate them.

As you can probably tell I am very happy with the build, design and fit of these high end flagship earphones. I see no way that this area could be improved upon and with the vast array of plate, shell design combinations, I’m confident all tastes will be catered for.

Burn in

We use 250 hours as standard burn-in for all our earphones and we used the  ‘YY Pro Audio C2x  Advanced earphone run-in machine’ to help take on this task. YY Pro Audio – C2x Advanced Cable Run-In Machine Review

We used this to break in the W900 earphones.

 Digital Audio Player Pairings

Pairing with the Astell and Kern AK380 Copper player

Transparent articulate pairing with the elegant Astell and Kern flagship player, spacious and wide signature synergy. Advanced Acousticwerkes W900 Reference Hybrid CIEM

Pairing with the newly released Sony NW-WM1Z digital audio high end player

Currently becoming my favourite DAP of recent times. The pairing with the W900 gives a very natural signature and lifts the neutral character with slight warmth. Advanced Acousticwerkes W900 Reference Hybrid CIEM

Pairing with the Chord Hugo

As expected the excellent Chord DAC exhibits its reference signature, extremely detailed and refined, slightly more airy. Advanced Acousticwerkes W900 Reference Hybrid CIEM

All paired well with the W900, but my preference was with the Sony NW-WM1Z flagship digital audio player. The rest of the review is based on this pairing.

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