Regardless of whether you elect to upgrade your iPod to one of the newest models or decide instead to purchase another MP3 player, one thing is undeniable: the earbuds that come packaged with your new device aren't going to provide the best possible listening experience. To that end, I've compiled several tips aimed at helping you ditch crappy headphones in favor of a pair that will treat your ears the way they deserve to be treated.
September products are just in time for those heading back to school and leave plenty of time to spare for the holiday buying season. It never fails: new releases always abound this time of year, and headphones are no exception. Among the many companies launching new product lines, it's easy to miss an announcement here and there. But if you're in the market for a new, inexpensive set of earphones with a low profile and sound-isolating capabilities, don't overlook Ultimate Ears' fall lineup.
The brand, which was purchased by Logitech in 2008, is offering six new sets … Read more
If you own a cell phone with a music player built-in, the best way to take advantage of both capabilities is with a stereo headset. That is, a pair of headphones with an integrated mic and call-answer button.
Plenty of music phones offer stereo Bluetooth capability, which lets you take calls and listen to music through a headset without pesky wires getting in the way. But at this stage in the game, the sound quality is generally not going to be as good as what you can get through a decent wired set.
Better yet, wired headsets are often cheaper … Read more
Apparently listening to halfalogue is frustrating because it takes up more of our mental CPU, so to speak. We can usually deduce what the conversation is about from halfalogue but the act of deduction is distracting.
But guess what? Eavesdropping in general is distracting, not to mention rude. I propose that we all invest in a good pair of noise-canceling earbuds and do what we were told to do in elementary … Read more
Phiaton dubbed the PS 210 headphones a "half in-ear" design, which is a catchy way of saying they don't reach as far into your ear canals as Monster, Etymotic, or Shure's in-ear models do, but they protrude a little more into the ear than earbuds do.
Before we go any further I'd like to tell you a little bit about Phiaton, which may be new to the U.S. headphone market, but looks like it's set to become a major player here. Phiaton is a division of Cresyn, a large South Korean electronics company founded in 1959. It started manufacturing OEM headphones in the 1980s for other companies, and now produces 15 million headphones a month! Phiaton is better-known in Asia and Europe than in the U.S.
Cresyn also manufacturers camera modules for cell phones and has factories in Indonesia and China; Phiaton's U.S. headquarters are based in Irvine, Calif.
The look of PS 210's lightweight aluminum earpieces is distinctive. The headphones come with four sizes of soft black silicon tips to help ensure a comfortable fit.
They're definitely more comfortable and less intrusive than in-ear designs. The PS 210's ear tips rest gently in your outer ear, but that also means the fit is less secure, and the earpieces can fall out, though I'm getting better at keeping them in. The real upside to the half in-ear design approach is that they don't block external sound, so you can still hear the world around you; the downside is you still hear the world around you. … Read more
We know it's not Halloween, but we here at MP3 Insider figured you could use a little horror in your life anyway. OK, so maybe it's a slow news week in MP3 player land, but that just happens to be the perfect excuse to rant about all the terrible choices portable audio device manufacturers have made over the years. But first, Donald and Jasmine eviscerate the awful packaging ensconcing the equally questionable earbuds from newcomer Ankit--trust us, if you've never watched the video before, it's worth it this time. Then, take a trip with us down memory lane that starts with the worst-ever MP3 player reviewed by CNET, and ends with a pair of unfortunate sneakers that never made it to market.
Anyone who has spoken to me for five minutes would probably tell you I'm quite normal. What they don't know is that I harbor a deep, dark secret, a strange deformity that sets me apart from the average person. OK, OK...it's not a secret at all, and I'd hardly call them deformed, but my ears are really ridiculously small. I've literally had people who've never read CNET point out how tiny they are. This is fine by me--I embrace my differences. And now a company called Yurbuds is embracing them, too.
Yurbuds is … Read more
I remain a steadfast fan of noise-isolating earbuds, which I think deliver much better sound--and greater comfort--than your garden-variety earphones.
Don't believe me? Drop a tenner and see for yourself. Buy.com has the Q:Electronics Noise-Isolating Earbuds with Volume Control for $9.99 shipped.
That's right, volume control: These babies have an inline slider that lets you raise and lower the volume without having to reach in your pocket to fiddle with your player's controls. (Why don't all headphones have this?)
The buds' other claim to fame: interchangeable "pads" that come in seven … Read more
We haven't given away an Editors' Choice product in a while, so we figured it was high time we posted one here on the Crave giveaway of the week, particularly since everyone could use a pair of high-quality earbud-style headphones.
In her review of the Klipsch Image S4 earbuds, editor Jasmine France said these 'buds "offer up sound quality on par with and better than sets that cost many times as much; they are a spectacular choice for anyone looking for new earbuds."
Anyone who has listened to me on the MP3 Insider podcast, followed me on Twitter (WeirdEaredJas), or even taken the time to peruse the bio below knows I am cursed with absurdly tiny ears. Heck, you can even see for yourself in the multitude of in-ear photos plastered across the headphone reviews on CNET. Happily for me, I am not alone in my deformity (yes, misery does indeed love company).
In fact, many purveyors of portable audio find standard earbuds uncomfortable and can't get many in-ear headphones to fit properly into the ear. It is for my fellow small-eared … Read more