"Great Concept, Poor Execution"1.5 starson by wilmi10
Pros: Great Return Policy
Cons: Sound Quality, fit/comfort, Ruggedness
Summary: I spend a lot of time on the Railroad and subway in and out of NYC. Since the original IPOD headphones have poor sound quality, no noise reduction to the outside world, and have a hard time staying in my ears, I decided it was time for an after-market ear-bud headset.
My first attempt was a Christmas gift from my wife of the NEW Bose in-ear headphones. I have used Bose technology in the past and have typically never been disappointed with the sound quality. Suffice to say, these things didn't cut the mustard on fit, comfort, quality and most-importantly sound. They provide 3 different size earbuds (Small, Medium & Large) of which none of them felt comfortable or fit properly. The wire on the headset is extremely thin and frail in comparison to other manufacturers, and definitely has the potential to wear with frequent use. I was impressed with the amount of bass these little guys kick off, but the acoustics didn't live up to the standards of what I would expect from a $99 Bose Headset. (I must admit they did put a ton of money into marketing these earphones, which would have probably been better spent on engineering a better product)One of my colleagues received the same gift from his wife and had all the same complaints that I had.
While discussing my dilemma with a co-worker (Not much to do at work Christmas week, so headphones seemed like a logical topic of discussion), he broke out his Shure e2c earphones. After disinfecting the silicone eargels, I placed them in my ear and plugged them into the IPOD. I was extremely impressed with the comfort, design and durability. When it comes to sound-quality, the acoustics were awesome, but the bass was near non-existent. Shure¡¦s website claims the e4c has much improved bass, however street price is $260 bucks. My co-worker agreed that the e2c¡¦s were a bit week on bass, but a cheaper alternative to his original headphones which were stolen, the Super.fi 5 Pro. He mentioned how much he loved his Super.fi¡¦s and should have purchased another pair.
After reading a ton of reviews on the Super.fi 5 Pro by Ultimate Ears, It was a toss-up between the 5pro and 5EB (Extended Bass) version for improved bass response. The true test came when I visited the local electronics store. They had both headphones on display, and made the disposable foam ear-tips available to try them out. The minute I plugged the 5pro into my ipod and powered it up, I was immediately sold. These were comfortable, durable, and sound quality was amazing for low¡¦s and hi¡¦s. Found the bass to be more than sufficient on several different music types. I tried the 5EB and felt the bass was even more powerful, but acoustics/sound quality seemed to suffer minimally. I enjoy clean sounding music with a comfortable amount of bass to complement the entire listening experience (I should get a job with CNET with my descriptions ƒº ) The fit was amazing, and these truly blocked out almost all outside noise. This made it much easier to listen to music at a volume that won¡¦t kill my hearing as quickly. Several options of ear-tip included. At a cost of $189 plus tax, they dropped them in the bag and I went on my merry way. The only reason I didn¡¦t rate them a 10 was because of cost, but hey, you get what you pay for..
The Bose headphones are now in a UPS box awaiting delivery back to South Carolina.