Your ears have always been good to you, right? So why are you jamming those cheap, uncomfortable, tinny-sounding plastic earbuds into them? You know, the ones that came bundled with your phone or MP3 player, and that consist of about 16 cents' worth of materials.
When it comes to comfort, sound quality, and outside-noise dampening, you can't beat a good pair of in-ear earphones. Like this pair: Newegg has the Klipsch Image S2 In-Ear Headphones for $17.99 shipped. (Earphones, headphones; tomato, tomahto.)
Update: Sold out, I'm afraid. (Keep checking, though, to see if Newegg makes more stock available. It happens!) Here's one alternate option: All4Cellular has the Skullcandy Ink'd in-ear headphones for $9.95, plus $2 for shipping. And they have an in-line mic!
That's after applying coupon code EMCJKKC26 at checkout. (Note: You need to be a Newegg newsletter subscriber in order to use this code.)
If you've never tried a pair of in-ear 'phones, you're missing out. Although pressing them (gently) into your ear canal may seem weird at first, I find this a lot more comfortable than those barely-padded plastic earbuds, which always make my ears hurt after 10 minutes or so.
What's more, there's just no comparison when it comes to sound quality. Music sounds like it's inside your head rather than just next to it. Plus, because the ear tips (the Image S2 comes with three pairs) create a seal inside the canal, they block out a good deal of ambient noise--which means you can keep the volume lower and protect your precious hearing. Win-win!
(There is one downside with these and similar earphones: cord noise. Any movement or rustling of the cord tends to end up in your ears.)
I don't own the Image S2, but I've used plenty of earphones just like it. And given that it has a list price of $49.99, you can't go wrong getting out the door for $17.99. As always, these are available while supplies last. And they might not last long!
Bonus deal: Go Tigers! Woo! Let's hear it for the American League division champs! (Sorry, Yankee fans.) I know, that's not a deal, just something I had to get off my chest. What a series. Anyway, one of the best Blu-ray deals ever is back: Today only, CowBoom has the refurbished Insignia NS-WBRDVD Blu-ray player for $49.99 shipped. Bought one of these earlier this year, and it's been great.