Shure SE535 review

At first glance these Shure buds seem expensive, but if you've got the cash then they're worth investigating Tested at £330

What Hi-Fi? Verdict

The SE535s are still a great pair of luxury earphones, but rivals have caught up


  • +

    Punchy, pacey performance

  • +

    very comfortable

  • +

    impressive sound isolation


  • -

    Not quite as transparent as their closest rivals

Why you can trust What Hi-Fi? Our expert team reviews products in dedicated test rooms, to help you make the best choice for your budget. Find out more about how we test.

These top-end Shures are off to a great start if a good fit is high on your list of priorities.

They’re a little fiddly to get in the ears, but their snug fit and wrap-around cables keep them firmly in place.

At the time of writing, the SE535s’ suggested price is about £470, but a quick shop around shows they’re available for far less, as the price we’ve quoted suggests.

The SE535 are an advanced design. They have twin mid/bass drivers and a dedicated tweeter per side and can dig deep when the music demands. Tinie Tempah’s Pass Out thumps out with real venom, and a decent sense of pace.

Wide dynamic reach
The Shures may not be quite as transparent as their closest rivals, but they’re still able to unravel a complex piece of music and make it understandable.

Their dynamic reach is wide and they can play loudly without an issue.

Add convincing tonal balance and a fine turn of speed to the list of plusses and it becomes clear that the SE 535s are a bit special.

The Shures’ price made us think hard about giving them five stars. In the end the superior performance of their closest peers such as Grado's GR10 was enough to knock the Shures down, but there’s still much to love.

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What Hi-Fi?

What Hi-Fi?, founded in 1976, is the world's leading independent guide to buying and owning hi-fi and home entertainment products. Our comprehensive tests help you buy the very best for your money, with our advice sections giving you step-by-step information on how to get even more from your music and movies. Everything is tested by our dedicated team of in-house reviewers in our custom-built test rooms in London, Reading and Bath. Our coveted five-star rating and Awards are recognised all over the world as the ultimate seal of approval, so you can buy with absolute confidence.

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