Headphones! which one?

Discussion in 'Product Recommendations/Reviews' started by Solafaa, Oct 30, 2004.

  1. Solafaa macrumors 6502a


    Jul 15, 2004
    Daddy said not to talk to strangers
    I am looking to buy a head phone for my laptop and iPod. I dont like the ones that comes with the iPod and looking for something portable and constable. Thanks.
  2. Vanilla macrumors 6502a

    Mar 19, 2002
    Atlanta, GA
    You need to decide first what type of headphones you would like: In-ear types, buds, or std headphone cans (either open or closed).

    I personally replaced my iPod buds with a pair of Shure E2C's, which fit directly into your ear canal, sealing off the outside world with foam (my choice) or soft plastic covers. Fitting them takes a little practice, but after about a week I got the hang of it and no longer need to stand in front of a mirror to install them. The sound is superb, bass response exquisite, you are not distracted by outside noise and neither do you irritate fellow commuters as sound leakage is minimal.

    Well thats my suggestion but as I say, knowing what kind of headphones you would be comfortable with would be a good first step to narrow down your search.

  3. kirk26 macrumors 6502a


    Jun 21, 2003
    West Virginia
  4. cluthz macrumors 68040


    Jun 15, 2004
    Koss PortaPro is cheap, good, portable and good sounding.
    Beware, there is also a SportaPro which is cheaper but not as good (not that their bad)

    If you are looking for more high-end you can opt for the Grado SR80 which is superb!

    Large headphones often requires much power, the iPod can't often give them enuff, and the sound quality will suffer. This also affects the batterylife.
  5. Chimera macrumors 6502

    Oct 29, 2004
    Surrey, England
    I've got Sony MDR-EX71s which are the in ear type as mentioned above, theyre very good for a relatively cheap pair £25 so i guess $30?! Theyre pretty bassy but thats to my liking anyway. If you want to go to a goof forum about headphones look at www.head-fi.org which is what i did.

  6. hobbes3113 macrumors regular


    Oct 18, 2002

    Gotta agree with Vanilla, the E2C's are fantastic.
  7. russed macrumors 68000


    Jan 16, 2004
    generally i have found that any that are made by sony and cost about £20 + are pretty decent and take a lot of wear and tear. mine (mdr-ed268) i got a few years ago and cost £35 and are brilliant. they can be tugged on etc and still dont break though they do have a tendency to get tangled up!
  8. Westside guy macrumors 601

    Westside guy

    Oct 15, 2003
    The soggy side of the Pacific NW
    Regular headphones - I bought some Sennheiser PX-100s off of Amazon for right around $40. I'm quite happy with them. Good bass response, and while they are of the "open" type (which is probably why the bass response is good) there isn't any sound leakage unless the volume is quite high. They are very comfortable to wear, and while they dampen down external sound somewhat they don't really interfere with your ability to hear things you need to hear - i.e. car horns. :D I've seen some oblivious in-ear-phone wearers step out in front of cars and Metro buses. :eek:

    They also fold, which is handy.
  9. stevehaslip macrumors 6502a


    Apr 30, 2004
    The Ocean Floor
    Every pair of earphones that i have bought have self destructed after about 6 months or so. But i bought the Sony MDR-EX71 nearly 3 years back and they are still going strong. I thought that they looked pretty fragile when i got them but they are amazing. (for the money) The EC2's are great from what i've heard from people but aren't they nearly £100??
  10. Duff-Man macrumors 68030


    Dec 26, 2002
    Albuquerque, NM
    Duff-Man says....I use the Sony EX71's as well and like them very much. If they should ever tank out on me I'll have a look at what is new, perhaps the Shure's and the Etymotic's too but they're both a bit more expensive....oh yeah!
  11. dvdh macrumors 6502


    Apr 6, 2004
    Try Grados

    If you are considering regular headphones (such as the sennheisers) be sure to try out a pair of low end Grados as well (the SR60s or SR80s). They have amazing sound quality, are not to heavy and fold flat.
  12. iEric macrumors 6502a

    Jun 26, 2003
    Don't know how much you're willing to pay but I bought the Etymotic ER-6i from toddthevinyljunkie.com and they are SO amazing. It's kinda pricey tho ~$130, US.
    However, this company makes like hearing aids and stuff so when it comes to in-ear buds, they know what they're doing. They have all this maintance stuff like filters and stuff that come with it. It's amazing. the sound, no words can explain and i'm on the bus for 2 hours EVERYDAY and now with these headphones i can't hear what ANYBODY says cause it keeps out noise so well.
    the only downpoint is the price and the fact that the wire of the headphones is thin and MIGHT be easily breakable. I don't know if thats a fact or if it has ever happened, just looks like it could.
  13. Mechcozmo macrumors 603


    Jul 17, 2004
    I have a cheap $5 pair from Target which work nicely. Also the Bose Quiet Comfort 2 headphones. They are large, but they are great for noise canceling. I like em a lot.
  14. Whigga Spitta macrumors 6502

    Apr 21, 2004
    Can you say Chi-City??
    I've had a pair of Bose Quiet Comforts for quite some time, which are a superb pair of headphones paired with my iPod/Powerbook. For on the go, though, I bought some foldable/water resistant Sony headphones which have been nice so far. They're only about $20, so I don't have to take that good of care for them, which is nice.
  15. Loge macrumors 68020


    Jun 24, 2004
    I like the Sennheiser MX550 as an inexpensive alternative to the iPod earphones. They also have a volume control on the cord. For my Powerbook I tend to use Bose TriPort but I think they are rather overpriced (and not too robust, I've had one replacement due to them snapping). I think I'll stick with Sennheisers in the future.
  16. risc macrumors 68030


    Jul 23, 2004
    Melbourne, Australia
    I use Sennheiser PX200s, the are closed collapsible mini format headphones, and for the price have great sound.
  17. kjgnola macrumors regular

    Aug 17, 2004
    New Orleans
    ER-4S Etymotic

    I use the ER-4S and love them. They are pricey, but if you are into good sound these are great.

    One other great thing about these is that while traveling by air you cannot hear a thing going on around, no annoying neighbors and engine noise is gone.

    I wish I had waited for the 6i's as I would love to have the white cable, yes I know it is a bit much.
  18. puckhead193 macrumors G3


    May 25, 2004
    I have those and they are amazing. Everyone who tryed them wants them but they can't afford them, but if u have the cash, and travel alot on planes.... u have a kick a$$ set of headphones and are worth carrying them
  19. mkrishnan Moderator emeritus


    Jan 9, 2004
    Grand Rapids, MI, USA
    Anyone use noise-cancelling *in ears*? I've been more and more put off by the amount of noise walking around Gainesville recently... :( I'm not expecting anything like what the QuietComforts do (those are *amazing* but I don't use over-ear headphones often enough to justify it).

    The ratings say they give you 10 dB of noise reduction, which should be noticeable walking around outside, albeit probably not good enough for using on an airplane. And I guess you have to put a separate battery in them? :(
  20. vga4life macrumors 6502

    Jun 16, 2004
    I fly a lot and have owned a lot of headphones in my life (including several models of active noise-reduction headphones, dating back to the original Noisebuster models). I'm over ANR headphones. They simply don't sound as good as other types of headphones, they chew up batteries, and they don't block much more noise.

    For traditional headphones I recommend Beyerdynamic DT250-80's. Sealed, closed-ear circumaural phones. Not cheap (~$180) but they block about as much noise as any ANR headphones I've ever owned (~10db isolation) and sound ten times better. They're also the most comfortable phones I've ever owned - I wear them for hours on end at work or on planes and they simply never get uncomfortable. (With circumaural phones, the pads go around one's ears, rather than resting on them. I find the latter very uncomfortable after an hour or so.) Also, unlike most sealed studio phones, these are sensitive enough to be driven by portable audio gear (i.e. no need for a headphone amp).

    Good in-ear phones block even more noise than ANR phones. There would really be no point to ANR with something like etymotics or shure in-ear headphones because they already cut something like 15 - 25 db of noise - as much or more than any current ANR technology is capable of. Shure e2c's are a great value for ~$100 and will sound better than any ANR phones.

    just my opinion,
  21. nbs2 macrumors 68030


    Mar 31, 2004
    A geographical oddity
    cheap alternative to the 71s

    I use the MDR-EX51 from Sony. It's a bit cheaper than the 71s, with no real loss in sound quality. At least, nothing I've noticed. I got mine for $20. The 71s are a bit more and the E2C is a little more than that. My only problem with the E2C is it looks kind of white-ish (someone can correct me?). Living in downtown Baltimore, I feel a bit more comfortable with having a set of plain black phones either in my ears or hanging around my shoulders.

    A good website you can checkout for deals is http://bensbargains.net
  22. lasuther macrumors 6502a

    Feb 13, 2004
    Grand Haven, Michigan
    I use etymotics and highly recommend them. The ER6 is very good. I also recommend the low end Grado's and Sennhieser 580 or 600. If you travel or want to reduce outside noise, go with the etymotics.

  23. mkrishnan Moderator emeritus


    Jan 9, 2004
    Grand Rapids, MI, USA
    Hmmm...I'm going to have to get a pair of in-ears with the rubber earplug style noise isolators, like the sony's or something. Are the etymotics available in white? :D
  24. plasticparadox macrumors 6502

    May 24, 2003
    I use the Apple In-Ear Headphones. No problems here. I really like the case that comes with them - helps me keep the wires organized.
  25. Sabbath macrumors 6502a


    Sep 18, 2003
    I use the Etymotics ER-6 but I don't find them as wonderful as everyone else, especially considering how much they cost. They easily distort as you turn the sound up, and I find even with them right deep in my ears they don't block all the sound out, so you do have to turn them up on public transport and when walking around busy areas (where I use my iPod most). They sound great in a quiet area with acoustic or what i'll call light music, if you throw any bass heavy rock or hip hop at them they tend to distort if you have much volume, or a rock or hip hop equalizer setting. Additionally to get the best out of them you do have to tailor the equaliser to each song, which is a major pain if you have a playlist of various music types. I find myself going back to the original iPod headphones for general listening out and about and only using the ER-6s somewhere quiet like a library or a plane. Although I do understand the more expensive Etymotics are much better.

    I used to have a pair of Koss portapros, which sounded much better, but were very ugly, a bit uncomfortable and not really practical for all round use. I also had a pair of the original Sony in ear headphones that were great for the price and could be used in any situation, so I would just go for the Sony or apple in ear headphones if I was getting new headphones.

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