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View Full Version : Earpods are pretty impressive




iEvolution
Sep 17, 2012, 04:26 PM
Just got my earpods...

They are not lying about the earpods rivaling more expensive sets, they have good bass response and are much much more full than the previous generation of buds.

They aren't as great as my Sennheiser HD 485s or have the clarity of my Bose OEs but these things are probably the best buds you'll find that aren't in ear or cans.

I haven't had a chance to wear them while active but I will report back later they seem a little slick and gives me the impression they may be hard to keep in the ear.

I've owned at least 20 cheapie sets and several more expensive ones including Klipsch One headphones, Bose OEs, Sennheiser HD 485s, audio-technica ATH-M40fs, and Sennheiser HD555s, these beat out all the cheapies and definitely up there with the more expensive sets.

For 30 you can't find better I guarantee.



basesloaded190
Sep 17, 2012, 04:28 PM
Nilay Patel from The Verge seems to disagree with you:

"I bought these Skullcandy buds in desperation at LGA for $30 and they're dramatically better than EarPods. You can do better still."

Technarchy
Sep 17, 2012, 06:24 PM
The few reviews online have been good so far.

Looking forward to getting first hand experience.

Policar
Sep 17, 2012, 06:32 PM
There's a very interesting article on inner fidelity (this crazy, ultra-technical website for the headphone-obsessed) that measures the generation of iPod earbuds prior to this against a broad range of other brands, up to and including $50 Sennheisers, I think.

Very surprisingly, the iPod earbuds had the best build quality and measured as having the best sound. They're strongly maligned, but a lot of it just might be how they sit in your ears; placed correctly, apparently they sound very good. So it's quite possible these new ones are great.

I was really spoiled by my UE10s, but the second cable just broke and it's almost as expensive to replace the cable as it is to buy a new pair at this point. These don't measure that well, fwiw, but I love the sound of them.

agitoTech
Sep 17, 2012, 07:31 PM
I don't think they will beat out my Ultimate Ears UE13's...

txflyfish
Sep 18, 2012, 01:26 AM
They're really cool looking...I really enjoyed them. At this price range you can't expect too much, but I was pleasantly surprised by the sound signature. This is coming from a CIEM - custom cable - CLAS - AMP setup

iEvolution
Sep 18, 2012, 01:53 AM
I don't think they will beat out my Ultimate Ears UE13's...

Well Id hope not considering the price difference, LOL.

I'm just saying for the price they are probably the best bud-style (not in-ears or cans) you can buy. They aren't going to replace high end audio head phones (or in-ears) but they are good for the price.

Sol
Sep 18, 2012, 02:53 AM
The amount of work that Apple put into the improved earpod design is amazing considering that ultimately these are disposable headphones. Sure, you can find something more expensive, flashier and better sounding than whatever gets bundled with the iOS device of your choosing but the problem with all headphones is that after prolonged use, some part of them will fail (usually the cord) and they will need to be replaced. No point spending too much on anything if you know that it will break at some point.

Guacamole
Sep 18, 2012, 07:49 AM
Are these smaller than the old ones? I couldn't use Apple earphones as they always fall off my ears, too big for me

oplix
Sep 18, 2012, 08:19 AM
The amount of work that Apple put into the improved earpod design is amazing considering that ultimately these are disposable headphones. Sure, you can find something more expensive, flashier and better sounding than whatever gets bundled with the iOS device of your choosing but the problem with all headphones is that after prolonged use, some part of them will fail (usually the cord) and they will need to be replaced. No point spending too much on anything if you know that it will break at some point.

They didn't do anything amazing. Lets be honest cheap headphones haven't progressed much in the last two decades. All apple did was bring disposable head phones into the 21st century. That's still not saying much.

Dagless
Sep 18, 2012, 09:29 AM
They do sound great, I'm quite impressed by them. They also fit my ear a bit better than the old ones.

txflyfish
Sep 18, 2012, 09:31 AM
They feel more secure when I inserted them, but I can't feel they're there either.

Did anybody notice any sensitivity differences vs the old ones? I don't remember exactly but I think I was driving the earpods roughly at the same volume as the old earphones (~70% max in a coffee shop)

DUCKofD3ATH
Sep 18, 2012, 11:17 AM
I've practically got a subscription plan with Amazon in that I buy at least two of their $13 buck Philips SHE6000/28 In-Ear Surround Sound Headphones per year.

They have good bass and clear sound, they just don't take more than six month's worth of abuse (i.e. having them yanked off when they hook on doorknobs, yanked off off when I drop the iPod touch, etc.)

Can anybody give me a comparison of how the Apple Earpods rate sound wise vs the Philips' earbuds?

Patriot24
Sep 18, 2012, 11:26 AM
I don't understand why everyone keeps comparing the EarPods to noise isolating buds and then complaining about the sound quality. Of course isolating buds are going to provide better sound than non-isolating EarPods.

They come free with some devices or sit on a store shelf where you have the option to purchase them. If they don't meet your needs, then simply do not use/purchase them.

At the end of the day, not everyone is a discerning audiophile as we are made to believe. I'm sure they're fine.

Appleseeds
Sep 18, 2012, 11:56 AM
I don't think they will beat out my Ultimate Ears UE13's...

I really don't think they are intended to. :rolleyes:

C.G.B. Spender
Sep 18, 2012, 12:47 PM
That's like showing a red pen and arguing what kind of red it is. All numbers aside your ear still decides.

Sol
Sep 18, 2012, 10:59 PM
They didn't do anything amazing. Lets be honest cheap headphones haven't progressed much in the last two decades. All apple did was bring disposable head phones into the 21st century. That's still not saying much.

The design is new. It seems to take parts from earphones (size of speaker) and combine it with elements of in-ear headphones (directing sound into the ear canal). The sound is designed to be directed where is counts and environmental noise is still audible which is good for safety reasons. The icing on the cake is that noise pollution becomes somewhat minimised and as a frequent bus passenger I for one can appreciate that. By the way, what's wrong with people that they would listen to music that loud regardless of the people around them? Too many sociopaths in the world just doing what they feel like and unfortunately they have made the iPod and iPhone another means with which to spoil something like a fifteen minute bus trip for other people.

curmudgeon32
Sep 19, 2012, 01:58 PM
From everything I've read, a new pair of head/earphones need to be run in for a while before they sound their best. I guess it's the cones needing to be flexed for a while before they reach their optimum response.

Zeke D
Sep 28, 2012, 10:57 PM
I plan on my wife getting me a pair for use with my iPod and iPad. I have found that due to the shape of my ears, only the Sony over the head ear buds work for me.

Blackberryroid
Sep 28, 2012, 11:22 PM
No, they aren't impressive. Not even close.

From thread http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?t=1457651

Too little bass. I need to turn up the equalizer to make me dance. When I make the equalizer, though, I feel like I'm listening to cheap earphones.

In layman's terms, it's not good enough. The beats (not the headphones) aren't really booming.

And did I mention how horrible it sounds in public with noise? They aren't even trying to isolate the noise.

They should have taken Apple's In-Ear, boost the bass a lot, then bundle it. That's just perfect.

What are your thoughts?

myrtlebee
Sep 28, 2012, 11:57 PM
I would have to disagree. Too bass-heavy. I use my iPod primarily for bedtime listening and it got annoying real quick coming from years of using the old Apple earbuds. Also made my ears feel just slightly "pressurized" - the feeling you get while ascending to a higher elevation while driving. Beyond that, I think it is an attractive design and I loved the remote and mic - very comfortable to click. The travel case sucks ass - good luck trying to wrap them back in there without fiddling with it for 5 minutes.

iEvolution
Sep 29, 2012, 05:33 PM
No, they aren't impressive. Not even close.

From thread http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?t=1457651

Find me a bud style that is as good as these at this price.

Not talking about in ears nor am I comparing them to head phones.

Best bud style earphones I've found. They are definitely a step up from the previous generation.

I love how so many people think that heavy bass is the only thing that matters.

mrbradg1
Oct 2, 2012, 09:01 AM
Someone from Head-fi put foamies on them and reported that they stay in the ear better and it gives them a warmer sound.

MrBrad.

george-brooks
Oct 2, 2012, 09:12 AM
I'm really impressed with the earpods. They're super comfortable and have fantastic bass response for their size. Sure, they're not going to beat more expensive earbuds made by real headphone companies, but for the free headphones that come with my phone I'm very VERY impressed. Big improvement over previous gen.

MonkeySee....
Oct 2, 2012, 09:19 AM
No, they aren't impressive. Not even close.

From thread http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?t=1457651

You're very wrong on many levels. The Earpods are exceptional. Even Woz thinks so and I value his opinion much higher than yours :)

DMSWE
Oct 2, 2012, 10:05 AM
Weren't the earpods supposed to have some kind of noise cancellation?

Still posters in this thread and posters elsewhere on forums, as well as Engadgets review, indicates that they are as useless as the old ones in noisy environments. Did I misunderstand the noise canceling bit?

I can only speak for myself, but the noise of a 1M+ city (esp. around the subway) makes over- or in-ear headphones a must. Me, I like neither of them (hate my Klipsch s4i, but they're the best I could find) and was hoping for the earpods to be good enough at blocking noise.

Blackberryroid
Oct 2, 2012, 04:23 PM
Find me a bud style that is as good as these at this price.

Not talking about in ears nor am I comparing them to head phones.

Best bud style earphones I've found. They are definitely a step up from the previous generation.

I love how so many people think that heavy bass is the only thing that matters.

Why would you even want that bud-style? The best bud-style is always in-ear, it always has stronger bass and better noise isolation. You can't really enjoy your music if your bud style is the same as the EarPods, the noise will not be blocked.

Anyways, Samsung has richer bass and better noise isolation. It doesn't even have a price, it comes with the Galaxy S3.

Apple should have taken their In-ear earphones, make the bass richer and bundle it with the iPhone 5.

----------

Weren't the earpods supposed to have some kind of noise cancellation?


No. You can hear every bit of noise even with the EarPods on, it's not designed for noise cancellation.

guspasho
Oct 2, 2012, 06:52 PM
They were never intended to be isolating or have massive amounts of bass. If you are looking for either, look elsewhere. Fortunately for me, I dislike both of those things, so for $30, I think they sound great. (Yes, I went and paid for them, I was curious about them but not about the iPods.) I can enjoy most music with them and still hear what's going on around me, without hearing my own breathing and cord movement amplified, and without my music drowning in bass. I said most music because heavy metal still doesn't sound right, especially toned-down guitars, but I've never found an earbud or IEM that gets those right. Apparently I have to get custom-molded tips, but that seems like too much work right now, and I'm happy to listen to something else until I have my Sony MDR-V6s or loudspeakers available.

My only complaint is the left and right earpods sit in my ear differently, so the sound level is always higher in my left ear. I'd love if there was a way to equalize the levels to compensate for that.

Jimbo47
Oct 2, 2012, 11:31 PM
I just got them today but like them so far. The best sounding earbuds I've ever owned. But the most I've ever spent is $25, so I can't really compare to a more expensive brand. But the sound is impressive. They are comfortable, but I have to find the right positioning to get the best sound and the best comfort at the same time, which is kind of difficult.

kaielement
Oct 3, 2012, 02:00 AM
Wondering how they feel after wearing them for long periods of time?

DMSWE
Oct 3, 2012, 05:51 AM
[...]My only complaint is the left and right earpods sit in my ear differently, so the sound level is always higher in my left ear. I'd love if there was a way to equalize the levels to compensate for that.

Well, assuming that you're using an iPhone, there is but it's hidden under Settings > General > Accessibility instead of the obvious - Sounds.

Tyga
Oct 3, 2012, 06:38 AM
I listen to primarily bass-heavy music, and I have to agree with OP. The earpods are a massive improvement over the previous generation earbuds. The bass is noticeably heavier, and the remote control gives a very satisfying click. I have some $80 Skullcandys at the moment; if they ever go out, I'd just get another set of $30 earpods. Very good value for the cost.

DMSWE
Oct 3, 2012, 07:03 AM
I listen to primarily bass-heavy music, and I have to agree with OP. The earpods are a massive improvement over the previous generation earbuds. The bass is noticeably heavier, and the remote control gives a very satisfying click. I have some $80 Skullcandys at the moment; if they ever go out, I'd just get another set of $30 earpods. Very good value for the cost.

Previous generations earbuds are not a very good comparison though as they are some of the worst earbuds I've ever had included with a phone/mp3-player.

guspasho
Oct 4, 2012, 04:15 PM
Well, assuming that you're using an iPhone, there is but it's hidden under Settings > General > Accessibility instead of the obvious - Sounds.

Brilliant! Thank you! The only drawback now is I use different headphones when I'm on the bus and when I'm at my desk at work, but at least I can switch back and forth now. Thanks again!

dabbler
Oct 5, 2012, 01:36 AM
I used them for 1 week, they seemed much better than the original design, however 3 days into week one - the pain! Oh how my ears hurt, the hard plastic has bruised the inside of my ear, not at all comfortable. Maybe I have odd ears?!

Any way picked up some b&w c5's, not only are they comfortable, they sound a LOT better than the pods.

sectime
Oct 5, 2012, 01:55 AM
Nilay Patel from The Verge seems to disagree with you:

"I bought these Skullcandy buds in desperation at LGA for $30 and they're dramatically better than EarPods. You can do better still."
He is wrong , and do you have your own opinion? I really like them and are the most comfortable for long term use I have used

Drunken Master
Oct 5, 2012, 02:44 AM
Why would you even want that bud-style? The best bud-style is always in-ear, it always has stronger bass and better noise isolation.

But sometimes people don't want to block out the whole world, like when riding on a subway.

It's also annoying to hear your own breathing, every little bite your teeth make, every time you move the headphone cord...and god forbid you want to snack on something with your in-ear headphones on. I think they make prisoners in Guantanamo do that.

Blackberryroid
Oct 5, 2012, 05:14 AM
But sometimes people don't want to block out the whole world, like when riding on a subway.

It's also annoying to hear your own breathing, every little bite your teeth make, every time you move the headphone cord...and god forbid you want to snack on something with your in-ear headphones on. I think they make prisoners in Guantanamo do that.

Still a better sound than not actually hearing your song in noisy environments...

Drunken Master
Oct 5, 2012, 08:21 AM
Still a better sound than not actually hearing your song in noisy environments...

I give up.

Mike in Kansas
Oct 5, 2012, 02:51 PM
I give up.

I've been following this conversation, laughing the whole time. I get the same type of argument from my 11 year old daughter...! She will ask a question and then proceed to tell you why all your answers are wrong, and why her 11 year old friends know better than you. She hasn't grown up enough yet to be able to understand the perspective of anyone else other than herself - it's foreign to her to think that both she AND someone else could be right at the same time!

SunnyStudioNeo
Oct 5, 2012, 04:07 PM
I Love the design. And definitely cost effective.

oneMadRssn
Oct 5, 2012, 05:25 PM
They're way too quiet for me. When riding the T (that's Bostonian for Metro), I had to have the earpods on full volume and they were still not loud enough to overcome the sound of the train at some points. Meanwhile, the $25 Zagg Smart.Buds do that just fine, on less than half volume.

In a quiet room, the Earpods sound ok. Certainly better than the earlier apple earbuds, but I expect better from a $30 set.

For those that don't know: The Yuin PK3 is probably the best set non-in-ear earbuds you can buy for less than $40. Hands down, no debate. Every single audiophile forum on the internet agrees.

notyourattorney
Oct 5, 2012, 07:49 PM
They didn't do anything amazing. Lets be honest cheap headphones haven't progressed much in the last two decades. All apple did was bring disposable head phones into the 21st century. That's still not saying much.

This is Apple in a nutshell right here. Sure, "all they did" was improve something. Something that needed to be improved. Something the improvement of which improves the quality of our lives. Not like curing cancer improvements, but hey, the things cost $30, free with an iDevice.

So you can downplay that: "All Apple did" But you know what? Nobody else did it. Not Sony, not Google, not Shure, not Grado. Sure, anyone could have taken Xerox's mouse and desktop metaphor and sold it to the mass market. But nobody else did. Anyone could have put a proper web browser and proper MP3 player in a phone, but nobody else did. Apple is not the only company to innovate, but they have a remarkable track record of doing things that improve, or even revolutionize, industries, which in hindsight seem so obvious, so derivative, yet for years NOBODY ELSE DID.

sazivad
Oct 5, 2012, 08:46 PM
I think the bottom line with EarPods is that they're better than the normal earbuds, which is good, since most people don't know better than to just use the headphones that come with the iPhone, etc. that they buy.

However, if you're serious about sound, it's not the headphone for you.

Drunken Master
Oct 5, 2012, 09:13 PM
I've been following this conversation, laughing the whole time. I get the same type of argument from my 11 year old daughter...! She will ask a question and then proceed to tell you why all your answers are wrong, and why her 11 year old friends know better than you. She hasn't grown up enough yet to be able to understand the perspective of anyone else other than herself - it's foreign to her to think that both she AND someone else could be right at the same time!

No, he's wrong, I'm right.

Seriously though, I have a pair of in-ear headphones but I only use them when flying. The only other time I really use my headphones is while jogging and popping on a pair of in-ears for that sounds lousy.

cnev3
Oct 12, 2012, 05:03 PM
I've heard more than a couple apple fans say that the original earbuds were good. So I am a bit inclined to be skeptical about people saying the new ones rival $100 earbuds.

And it amazed me to see, when i'd go out on the street, how many people were using the craptastic earbuds. I think its because they were trying to show off, by using the white earbuds.

Yeah I bought a top of the line iPhone, and I used decent quality earbuds, that were black.

Jessica Lares
Oct 12, 2012, 05:36 PM
I think they're good. They actually stay in my ears, and don't irritate them. Not the best, but I would buy another pair.

dmccloud
Oct 15, 2012, 08:31 PM
No, they aren't impressive. Not even close.

From thread http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?t=1457651

First of all, quoting yourself as an authoritative source is kinda lame. Second, the ear pods are not designed to compete with higher end headphones, but with models such as the Apple Earbuds, sub $30 SkullCandy/Sony/JVC, etc. Compared to the SkullCandy headphones I was using, the Ear Pods are noticeably better, and because of the design, I can actually keep the volume at a lower level than with other headphones (even my noise canceling Sony set requires a higher volume.)

ermusician
Oct 16, 2012, 01:06 PM
I love them! Definitely better than the previous ones. I mostly listen to my music on my Bose Quiet Comfort 15's but the new earpods are better for when I'm walking around campus. One thing I don't like; they don't cancel out ANY noise whatsoever.