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I ”upgraded” from the 2nd gen 18+ with the True Tone drivers & 2-pin connection. This latest 3rd gen w/True Tone Plus drivers & IPX connection is airier with a larger soundstage. Vocals sound more forward and clear. Treble has more sparkle as well. Previous gen has a smoother natural tonality. Overall this 3rd gen has a brighter more reference tuning. I wouldn't call this 3rd generation an upgrade so much as a whole new IEM. Both great IEMs, but different signatures. If you are looking for the UE 18+ of the past, you may want to look elsewhere or find a used one. I do miss the beautiful burled walnut faceplate on my gen 2. Hopefully for future drops Massdrop can offer more faceplate options besides just black and clear.