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Reviewed on Jun 27, 2017

Shure SE315 HEADPHONES REVIEW

Usage Ratings - Version 1.2
6.0
Mixed Usage
5.8
Critical Listening
6.2
Commute/Travel
6.9
Sports/Fitness
6.1
Office
5.7
TV
5.3
Gaming
Type : In-ear
Enclosure : Closed-Back
Wireless : No
Noise-Cancelling : No
Mic : No
Transducer : Hybrid

The Shure SE315 are well-built headphones with a comfortable and stable fit. They're easy to carry around in your pocket, and they're decent headphones for sports since they won't easily fall out of your ears. Unfortunately, their sound quality is disappointing and may be a deal breaker for most listeners, especially in their price range.

Test Results
Design 7.6
Sound 5.2
Isolation 8.1
Microphone 0
Active Features 0
Connectivity 4.8
Pros
  • Minimal leakage and decent isolation.
  • Durable build quality.
  • Stable and portable design.
Cons
  • Below-average sound quality.
  • No controls.
  1. Update 2/16/2018: Converted to Test Bench 1.2.
  2. Update 8/10/2017: Converted to Test Bench 1.1. Learn more about our new versioned test bench system here.

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7.6

Design

The SE315 have a simple ear-hook design that's stable enough for sports. They're more comfortable than typical in-ears thanks to the shape of the ear buds and the wide variety of tips they offer. Although, they're a bit bulkier than most in-ears they're still quite portable and come with a good case that will easily fit into your pockets. The audio cable is thick, durable and replaceable if it ever gets damaged which adds to their durability. Unfortunately, they don't provide a second cable in the box which would have been ideal and they also have no control scheme.

Style

The Shure SE315 have an ear-hook design and angled earbuds that better fit the contours of your ears. The ear buds look and feel premium and the audio cable is thick and heavily rubberized. Like the SE425 they have a transparent variation that stands out a bit more than the all black color scheme.

7.5 Comfort
Weight : 0.06 lbs
Clamping Force
:
0 lbs

The Shure 315 have an in-ear fit that's comfortable enough to wear for long periods of time. They have a wide variety of differently sized tips, some made of memory foam that better conform to the shape of your ear canal. They're also worn like an ear-hook design, so the earbuds are shaped to fit snugly within the contours of your ears. This makes them more comfortable than typical in-ears, although if you're not a fan of the in-ear fit, they may still get a bit fatiguing after wearing them for a while.

0 Controls
Ease of use : N/A
Feedback : N/A
Call/Music Control : No
Volume Control : No
Microphone Control : N/A
Channel Mixing
:
N/A
Noise Canceling Control : N/A
Talk-Through
:
N/A
Additional Buttons : N/A
9.2 Breathability
Avg.Temp.Difference : 0.8 C
8.6 Portability
L : 2 "
W : 2 "
H : 1.5 "
Volume : 6 Cu. Inches
Transmitter required : N/A

The SE 315 are as portable as most in-ear headphones. They easily fit into your pockets and aren't much of a hassle to carry on you at all times. They also come with a sturdy carrying case that will also fit into your pockets although it does add a bit of bulk to the headphones.

7.5 Case
Type : Soft case
L : 3.2 "
W : 4.7 "
H : 1.4 "
Volume : 21 Cu. Inches

Comes with a sturdy hard case. It's decently portable and protects the headphones from impacts and drops as well as minor water exposure. It does add a bit of bulk to the headphones, but the case is still portable while being big enough to carry all the accessories.

8.0 Build Quality

These headphones have a sturdy design and replaceable parts for added durability. The ear buds are dense and hard to damage even if you accidentally drop them a few times. The cable is thick, rubberized and also detachable so they can be swapped out for another cable or a wireless adapter to make the in-ear buds wireless. Unfortunately, no extra cables are provided out of the box which is somewhat disappointing for their price especially when compared to the Westone W40.

7.5 Stability

The SE 315 are stable, wired in-ear headphones. They have a pseudo ear-hook design that's flexible and not as stiff other ear-hook models. This makes them stable enough to run with, and they won't fall out of your ears unless you physically pull them out or the audio cable gets hook on something. This makes them above-average headphones for working out, but, the flexible hooks are not as stable as some of the true ear-hook designs that we've previously tested.

Cable
Detachable : Yes
Length : 5 ft
Connection : 1/8" TRS

Comes with a detachable audio 1/8 TRS cable.

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5.2

Sound

The SE315 are a poor sounding pair of closed-back in-ears. The have a well-extended Bass that unfortunately sounds boomy, a muddy and honky sounding Mid range, and a Treble that lacks air and detail. They also have a poor Soundstage and a mediocre distortion performance. On the plus side, they image well, and given a good fit can perform quite consistently.

7.5 Bass
Std. Err.
:
3.27 dB
Low-Frequency Extension
:
46.21 Hz
Low-Bass
:
-3.12 dB
Mid-Bass
:
0.22 dB
High-Bass
:
5.15 dB

Good Bass Range performance. Low-bass which is responsible for thump and rumble is lacking by about 3dB. Bass has a tilt towards high-bass, which is overemphasized by up to 6dB. This makes the Bass of these headphones noticeably boomy.

4.5 Mid
Std. Err.
:
7.31 dB
Low-Mid
:
6.52 dB
Mid-Mid
:
5.38 dB
High-Mid
:
9.32 dB

Poor Mid Range performance. Low-mid and mid are consistently over our target by more than 5dB which makes these headphones muddy and mid-rangy. High-mid is hyped by more than 10dB, pushing the vocals to the front and making them sound honky.

4.7 Treble
Std. Err.
:
6.25 dB
Low-Treble
:
0.18 dB
Mid-Treble
:
-5.2 dB
High-Treble
:
-16.85 dB

Poor Treble Range performance. Low-treble is relatively balanced, but the dip around 6KHz hurts the detail and clarity of vocals/leads. High-treble shows more than 15dB of underemphasis, taking the air and brilliance out of the Treble.

8.7 Frequency Response Consistency
Avg. Std. Deviation
:
0.27 dB

Excellent frequency response consistency. If the user is able to achieve a proper seal and fit using the variety of tips that comes with the SE315, then they should be able to achieve consistent performance each time.

9.0 Imaging
Weighted Group Delay
:
0.08
Weighted Amplitude Mismatch
:
0.24
Weighted Frequency Mismatch
:
1.97
Weighted Phase Mismatch
:
3.74
1.1 Soundstage
PRTF Accuracy (Std. Dev.)
:
N/A
PRTF Size (Avg.)
:
N/A
PRTF Distance
:
N/A
Openness
:
2.9
Acoustic Space Excitation
:
0
Correlated Crosstalk
:
0 dB
6.0 Total Harmonic Distortion
Weighted THD @ 90
:
56.171
Weighted THD @ 100
:
71.518

Mediocre Harmonic Distortion performance. The overall level of distortion is elevated in Bass and Mid range, regardless of the level. The Treble range shows less distortion than the Bass and Mid ranges, also regardless of the level, which is good.

8.1

Isolation

The SE315 passively a decent amount of ambient noise. They do fairly well in loud environments thanks to the seal they create within your ears, which prevents a lot of noise from entering your audio. They also barely leak so they're a great option to use in quieter settings when you don't want to distract the people around you. They're not as good as noise-cancelling headphones but they provide enough isolation to be above-average commuting headphones.

7.1 Noise Isolation
Isolation Audio
:
Overall Attenuation
:
-20.79 dB
Bass
:
-0.77 dB
Mid
:
-17.7 dB
Treble
:
-45.4 dB
Self-Noise
:
0 dB

Decent Isolation performance. These in-ears do not isolate below 300Hz, which is inferior to some other in-ears we have measured. However, in the Mid and Treble ranges they achieve 18dB and 45dB of reduction respectively. Both values being good.

10 Leakage
Leakage Audio
:
Overall Leakage @ 1ft
:
18.05 dB

Excellent Leakage performance. The SE315 has one of the quietest leakages we have measured so far. The do not leak in the Bass and Mid ranges, and their Treble range leakage barely reaches audible levels

0

Microphone

Integrated
:
N/A
In-line
:
N/A
Boom
:
N/A
Detachable Boom
:
N/A
0 Recording Quality
Recorded Speech
:
N/A
LFE
:
N/A
FR Std. Dev.
:
N/A
HFE
:
N/A
Weighted THD
:
N/A
Gain
:
N/A
0 Noise Handling
Speech + Pink Noise : N/A
Speech + Subway Noise : N/A
SpNR
:
N/A
0

Active Features

No active features

N/A Battery
Battery Type
:
N/A
Battery Life
:
N/A
Charge Time
:
N/A
Power Saving Feature
:
N/A
Audio while charging
:
N/A
Passive Playback
:
N/A
0 App Support
App Name : N/A
iOS : N/A
Android : N/A
Mac OS : N/A
Windows : N/A
Equalizer
:
N/A
ANC control
:
N/A
Mic Control : N/A
Room effects
:
N/A
Playback control
:
Button Mapping : N/A
Surround Sound : N/A

No compatible app.

4.8

Connectivity

0 Bluetooth
Bluetooth Version
:
N/A
Multi-Device Pairing
:
N/A
NFC Pairing
:
N/A
7.2 Wired
OS Compatibility
:
Not OS specific
Analog Audio
:
Yes
USB Audio
:
No
PS4 Compatible
:
Audio Only
Xbox One Compatible
:
Audio Only
PC Compatible
:
Audio Only
0 Base/Dock
Type
:
N/A
Optical Input
:
N/A
Line In
:
N/A
Line Out
:
N/A
USB Input
:
N/A
RCA Input
:
N/A
PS4 Compatible
:
N/A
Xbox One Compatible
:
N/A
PC Compatible
:
N/A
Power Supply
:
N/A
Dock Charging
:
N/A
0 Wireless Range
Obstructed Range
:
N/A
Line of Sight Range
:
N/A
10 Latency
Default Latency
:
0 ms
aptX Latency
:
N/A
aptX(LL) Latency
:
N/A

In the box

  • Shure SE315 Headphones
  • Audio cable
  • Earbud tips (x9)
  • Wax removal tool
  • Carrying case
  • Manuals

6.0 Mixed Usage

The Shure SE 315 are mediocre mixed usage headphones. They have a compact and stable design and isolate fairly well. Unfortunately, they have a poor sound quality for casual and critical listeners and they lack any controls which makes them a bit more difficult to use with mobile devices.

5.8 Critical Listening

Below-average for critical listeners. They have decent bass but an overemphasized mid range that makes them sound too warm and muddy for most listeners. They also tend to push instruments and vocals to the front of the mix which with their slight lack of clarity makes their boomy sound quality even worse. Unfortunately, they also have a poor soundstage due to their closed back in-ear design which means they won't be the ideal headphones for critical listeners.

6.2 Commute/Travel

Decent for commuting and traveling. They're comfortable and they're easy to carry on you at all times. They also block a fairly decent amount of ambient noise but they have no controls.

6.9 Sports/Fitness

Above-average for sports. They have a good ear-hook design that's stable enough to run with and they're decently comfortable for an in-ear design. Unfortunately, they don't have any controls and the audio cable may get tangled or hooked on something when exercising.

6.1 Office

Decent for office use. They barely leak so you won't distract your colleagues even at higher volumes. Unfortunately, they have a subpar sound that may disappoint serious listeners.

5.7 TV

Above-average for Home Theater. They're more comfortable than typical in-ears so you can wear them for hours. They also have a no latency since they're wired. Unfortunately, they have a mediocre at best sound quality and a short audio cable that won't be ideal to comfortably watch movies from your couch unless you have an extension cord.

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