In-ear headhones for iPod Touch - realistic options

Discussion in 'iPod touch' started by PeteB, Jan 19, 2009.

  1. PeteB macrumors 6502a

    PeteB

    Joined:
    Jan 14, 2008
    #1
    I realize there's plenty of threads for earphone recommendations, but I'm also aware that the iPod isn't exactly an audiophile device (especially considering the bit-rate served up by iTunes).

    So. Given a moderate budget (up to $250USD), what recommendations are there for in-ear headphones that won't be wasted on the iPod?
     
  2. MaxPower49 macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Sep 11, 2008
    #3
    $250 for earbuds is a moderate budget? :eek:

    I have the ety ER6is (~$60) and I have no complaints about the sound.
     
  3. PeteB thread starter macrumors 6502a

    PeteB

    Joined:
    Jan 14, 2008
    #4
    That's moderate in relation to high-end audiophile stuff.. :D
     
  4. Packersfan27 macrumors 6502

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    May 29, 2008
  5. jampat macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2008
    #6
    You can get almost anything in that price range. Shure SE530's can be picked up used for that (they are going for ~300USD new from headphone.com), Etymotic ER4's sound amazing, ER6's sound great for a lot less money. I've heard that the HF2's are not great so I would avoid them.

    As far as quality of music, if you care enough to drop 250 on phones, encode your own music and that way you decide how it sounds.

    Go to a store, take your iPod, listen to headphones, pick a pair that you like.
     
  6. PeteB thread starter macrumors 6502a

    PeteB

    Joined:
    Jan 14, 2008
    #7
    There's a few threads here on macrumors that they're not significantly better than the standard ear-buds. I'd rather spend a bit more on better quality.
     
  7. Consultant macrumors G5

    Consultant

    Joined:
    Jun 27, 2007
    #8
    iPod works with uncompresed music.
    You can also buy 256bit AAC DRM-free music from iTunes.
    Nothing is "wasted" on iPod. It might be wasted by user's lack of knowledge or lack of ability to search on something that's been beaten to death.
     
  8. Moriarty macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Feb 3, 2008
    #9
    The Shure SE series are good, as are Westones. You can get Shure earphones from the Apple online store, and Westones from RadTech, just to name a few places.

    I have a pair of the cheapest Shures (SE110's) and they're good. The sound quality isn't quite worth the price, but for the sound isolation they give, I'm happy.

    For all your portable hi-fi needs, www.head-fi.org. They have a sub-forum dedicated to in-ear headphones.

    About iTunes sound quality... on a hi-fi separates setup that cost several thousand $, I can tell a difference between 128kbps AAC and the original CD, but it is a surprisingly small difference. High frequencies seem a little bit recessed (earphones tend to suck with high frequencies anyway), but other than that, I can hardly hear any difference at all.

    If you're really worried about sound quality you shouldn't be buying 128kbps iTunes tracks, you should be buying CDs and ripping in Apple Lossless.
     
  9. PeteB thread starter macrumors 6502a

    PeteB

    Joined:
    Jan 14, 2008
    #10
    Thanks for the character assassination.

    The fact remains that the iPod isn't an audiophile device. And not all of my music (or pod casts for that matter) is at CD quality.
     
  10. Consultant macrumors G5

    Consultant

    Joined:
    Jun 27, 2007
    #11
    That's a limitation on your library, not an iPod limit.

    I buy CDs and rip lossless.

    I have a backup DJ setup of which iPod outputs line level audio via dock connector adapter.

    Audiophile are known to carry headphone amp with their portable music players, but as you know those are sort of pricy.

    FYI, full sized headphones will be better bang for the buck than in ear headphones, so you might want to look into that if quality is more important than portability.
     
  11. jampat macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2008
    #12
    At the price range he is looking at and running with iPod as a source, IEM's are a better idea. The iPod has a tiny little headphone amp in it and running most nice big headphones puts you right at the top of it's range. It distorts and sounds really terrible. My senn's sound like garbage attached to an unamped iPod. For the budget he has, you can pick up some really great IEM's that you will have trouble using more than half volume on your iPod with. That leaves some headroom to keep things dynamic.

    As stated above, check out head-fi.org or headphone.com, they are both excellent sources of info (and much less fanboy crap than here).
     
  12. marclapierre13 macrumors 6502a

    marclapierre13

    Joined:
    Jul 7, 2005
    #13
    The new apple in ear headphones with microphone/ remote appear to be good quality, but i have no first hand experience.
     
  13. Sdevante macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Dec 12, 2008
    #14
    Beats by Dre TOUR FTW!

    Or, spend an extra $100 over your budget, and Beats by Dre STUDIO FTW!
     
  14. jampat macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2008
    #15
    From what I have read, they are the worst sounding POS made in a long time and really over priced. Never listened to them though.
     
  15. ajvizzgamer101 macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Mar 3, 2008
    Location:
    United States
    #16
    That what I am getting... Brand I can trust, In-ear, Mic, Volume, White...
     
  16. Mr Kram macrumors 68000

    Mr Kram

    Joined:
    Oct 1, 2008
    #17
    i have a couple pairs of older shure e4c's. they've been great for me.
     
  17. dL. macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Nov 5, 2007
    #18
    The new in-ear headphone from Apple is a steal considering it's only $89 and you get dual driver. You really get to hear the crispness and clarity. The bass is responsive yet not too boomy. Very accurate IEM imo.

    dL
     
  18. Thomasthetug macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jan 18, 2009
    Location:
    Winterpeg, Manitoba
    #19
    Hi i don't want to "hijack" the thread, but i recently got skull candy 'smokin buds' and when i listen to them on my ipod touch 2nd gen the music comes out the ear phones, as well as the speaker, otherwise i love skull candy and recommend them :p.
     
  19. tadad1 macrumors 6502a

    tadad1

    Joined:
    Oct 20, 2008
    #20
    I am currently enjoying the Sleek SA6 with Bass+ and Treble++ tuning ports with my 2nd gen Touch and prefer them for overall sound and comfort over my UE TF10, and Shure SE530. With the VQ Tuning System and replaceable cables they are pretty hard to beat at around $200. If you have a 2nd gen touch I would also recommend picking up one of Sleeks iPhone cables that allow you to remotely control play\pause, next\prev with 1, 2, or 3 clicks of the cable mounted control button.

    Although slightly over your budget they can also pick them up bundled with the Sleek W1 Kleer Technology wireless transmitter for under $300.
     
  20. leifers macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jan 19, 2009
    #21
    yeah...i like skullcandy, nice in-ear earbuds for like 10 bucks, the seem to sound pretty good
     
  21. Thomasthetug macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jan 18, 2009
    Location:
    Winterpeg, Manitoba
    #22
    Ah, i got the smokin buds for a bit more, and i love them. And they started to work again for some reason as i mentioned before the ipod would play through the speaker and earphone now they don't.
     
  22. PeteB thread starter macrumors 6502a

    PeteB

    Joined:
    Jan 14, 2008
    #23
    Thanks for the advice guys. In the end I went for some UE Super.fi 5 Pros that were on sale. I just got them this morning and woah, they're good.

    The only downside is that they're a bit of a fiddle to stick in your ears, but once they're there, they're completely comfortable.

    Finally, I have bass and mid-range again - I've not heard Metallica sound this good in quite a while.
     
  23. dasikes macrumors 6502a

    dasikes

    Joined:
    Jul 10, 2008
    Location:
    Alabama
    #24
    Jeez... $250 as a "moderate" budget... I just don't understand audiophilia...

    Sound quality is important to me, but there is a limit.
     

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