Pros Ultra-light, the closed design shuts out a lot of external noise, fantastic sound reproduction, especially bass, and MUCH cheaper than the audiophile headphones CNet normally lauds. Dunno 'bout you, but the vicissitudes of being out and about with headph
Cons They're white? WHITE?! You can get the same thing in black, so if you don't want to look like a (i)Pod person, you do have a choice! The hard case is a joke. It's difficult to get the 'phones, with their protective case and the cord AND the extension c
Pros Good sound, tolerable fit
Cons Atrocious quality - broke in 2 days!
Summary Initially - I was very excited to have this player. The sound is good and the fit is pretty tolerable for being way inside your year. The one glaring drawback is that the headphone cord is way too short and the extension cord is ridiculously long. You end up having the extension cord with a stupid looking tie on it just to put your iPOD on your waist.
The worst thing was the quality of the wire. After trying to adjust it, it literally broke - the cover on the wiring just fell off. Trust me - this thing is NOT built to last - it is awful. Sony customer service is equally awful, it took almost an hour to get a workorder so I could send it to them. AND there's a good chance they won't cover such damage under warranty. PLEASE do not buy these headphones - spend the extra money on others.
Pros good sound and 3 sizes of earpieces
Cons The cord for the right headphone goes around your neck. This is great at first but if you work out with them often, you'll soon notice a problem. The cord is NOT water resistant. Whatever kind of material they used soaks up sweat and eventually becomes
Pros Solid audio quality; Inexpensive
Cons No in-line volume control
Summary Sony delivers 100% on the quality/price ratio. For one tenth the cost of a pair $300 headphones from Shure you get balanced audio with some oomph. I say SOME oomph and not a LOT of oomph because these are certainly not going to envelop you in sound as would a supra-aural set of cans would. But do you really want to spend that much money on something you're going to whip out on the subway? Save those big boys for some late night DVD study hour while the lady is asleep.
A note on the "long" extension cord that so many people are complaining about: please, people! Wind it up and put it in the little case (which is an inch and a half long btw) like you're supposed to! And hey, if you're so serious about audio, why doesn't your mp3 player have a remote?? All you have to do is set the extension aside and connect the buds to the remote.
Oh, and also, when you're not using the buds, put them safely away in the bigger case. You're Zen Micro has a case to protect it right? So do your earbuds.
Final words: GOOD sound (score of 7) at a PERFECT value (score of 10) equals a total score of 8.5 -- which I will round up to 9
Pros They sound good for the price range. Very large frequency range, with quick response times.
Cons Construction is lacking. Sheathe for the cord is sub par, and has required electrical tape to prevent futher degredation. The included cases are practically useless.
Summary After owning a pair practically since the day they showed up in a local store (about 6 months ago) I have been very pleased with the earbuds themselves.
The quality of the sound is very good, if only Sony has paired that quality with better construction. the sheathe that the wires to the earbuds themselves is very fragile. Even though I have diligently attempted to store them in the cases that they came with, my cord now has many cuts. The wires inderneath this sheathe have no very little insulation and the sheathe does not fit snug. This has caused it to stretch in some areas and facilitated it becoming completely detached from the left earbud (I have remedied this with a quick application of electrical tape, at the cost of having a black stripe on my otherwise white earbuds. It does look rather ridiculous).
As for the two cases that are included with the earbuds, one for the earbuds themselves and another for all the accompanying cords and different rubber things you place in your ear. The earpud case appears to have been designed to keep them clean but is not built solidly enough reliably to stay shut. I lost this case within the first month of usage, never missed it. The second case has one major downfall, the door hinge. It is cheaply constructed, and pops off easily. the minor downfall of this case is its size, being just barely large enough to hold the earbuds and their extension cable (a must if you have anything too large to fit in a breast pocket) if you wind it around 2-4 fingers (depending on the size of your fingers of course). Otherwise, the case is very strong, I have stepped on it (I weigh about 200lbs, and can typically be found wearing tactical boots), rolled my desk chair over it, and dropped textbooks on it. The only damage thus far has been that blasted door flying off and across the floor. This can be fixed with the application of electrical tape (or duct tape, if you prefer), but the door still pops off its hinges.
Overall, these earbuds are very good for an emerging audiophile on a tight budget.