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The Headphones Thread

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Im using a pair of creative labs (I think?) canal headphones I picked up for 20 bucks on special from Best Buy (regular 60 bucks). They're comfortable and seem to have good responsiveness, but dang the volume is so high I have to practically set my computer volume's to off to keep the audio reasonable.

 

I dont remember the exact model or whatnot, but instead of using a foam jacket these use a set of soft rubber insert sleeves. they stay relatively clean and are firm enough to keep the headphones in w/o being uncomfortable - doesn't feel like you're sticking a giant bean in yer ear like some rubber heads do.

 

I've been using them for over a year and they seem exceptionally durable and comfortable. I sometimes wish I had a frame I could attach them to though when I'm using them at the comp. They're great with my portable music player though.

 

I highly recommend that style of headphone jacket over foam. Main thing to consider pairing with this though is an inline volume control if you can find one since my model didnt come with one.

 

Actually here's a link so you can see what they look like:

http://us.creative.com/products/product.asp?category=437&subcategory=441&product=17398&listby=

 

The thing to note is that the hard ish looking rubber bud cover is actually *soft* rubber. These are probably the only in ear headphones I've ever enjoyed wearing as I've been a "big horkin over ear headphone" fan forever.

Edited by OzzelsCousinFred

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I do love that Klipsch horn sound. What model(s) have you heard josh? In terms of cost, I'm looking to spend about 200 or so.

 

Perfect. I'm using the Image 5's:

 

http://www.klipsch.com/products/details/image-x5.aspx

 

The sound is gorgeous, they're comfortable, super light, and I get little to no cable noise (dependent upon what shirt / jacket I am wearing of course). Another plus is that the cable length is seemingly perfect. Every earbud set I've used had a cable that was either too long, resulting in tangles and random catches/cable noise or too short, resulting in general annoyance and heavy extenders.

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I've got Klipsch Custom 1s that I picked up in some insane Amazon sale before Christmas for ?17.99, which is what Sennheiser cx300s normally cost there. The Senheisers are worth every penny normally, but the Klipsch do blow them out of the water.

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My Shure E2C's stopped working unless I held my jaw in a specific way (weird, huh), so I upgraded to the Klipsch Custom-2's.

 

I find it a little more difficult to plug-and-play with the Klipsch. I have to fiddle with them a bit to get a proper fit. But once they are in properly, they are very comfortable and sound very rich.

 

Carlos.

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Anyone have or heard anything regarding V-Moda Faze headset? Will be on sale tomorrow at Best Buy for $40. Love my Shure but don't want to keep unplugging my headset everytime a call comes in and can't really afford the Shure's with this feature.

 

http://m.bestbuy.com/m/e/product/detail.jsp?skuId=9392668&pid=1218097977051

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Anyone have or heard anything regarding V-Moda Faze headset? Will be on sale tomorrow at Best Buy for $40. Love my Shure but don't want to keep unplugging my headset everytime a call comes in and can't really afford the Shure's with this feature.

 

http://m.bestbuy.com/m/e/product/detail.jsp?skuId=9392668&pid=1218097977051

 

Shure Makes an adapter for the headsets.. Ive been using it since my original iphone.. works perfectly fine. http://www.amazon.com/Shure-MPA-3C-Music-Adapter-iPhone/dp/B000UD205K

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Blegh. After just 4 months, my SE530's are severely exhibiting the cord cracking issue (two cracks on the right, one in the same place on the left with another right at the connecting base). As evidenced in this thread, I had my E2C's for about 3 years (!!!) before that with more abuse and zero problems. Guess I'll have to figure out how/when I want to send them in for warranty replacement. :(

Yeah so now my replacement SE530's are dying. The right channel drops out randomly, it seems to be an internal wiring problem at the connection base (no visible fraying/cracking). Time to send them back again. Since the original warranty runs out at the end of this month, guess I'll baby the replacements and use the SE110's I picked up (I was out of the country for an extended period when the first set of SE530's died) as my everyday.

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Had the the Klipsch IMAGE S4i's for close to a month now and so far so good. They get daily use during my long commute. The only thing I'm concerned about is the build quality of the cable. Seems a bit thin and frail but very flexible so as not to crack. Just don't tug too hard on the cord/cable. Even the higher end ear buds have issues with their cables so I would rather drop S4i's $99 price tag for a $250+ sounding equivlent then spend much more and encounter the same issues.

 

I also really like the fit. Very comfortable and seem to isolate better than other ear buds I've used. The buds are an oval shape rather than perfectly round. They match the shape of the ear canal much better than the typical round silicone buds.

 

http://community.klipsch.com/blogs/markb/archive/2009/08/06/klipsch-busted.aspx

 

Test.png?t=1249570032

 

Hopefully Klipsch, has learned a few lessons from the other manufacturers and I won't run into any issues with the cords. That remains to be seen.

 

BTW, they also come with a 2yr. Warranty.

 

Some reviews:

 

http://reviews.cnet.com/headphones/klipsch-image-s4i-earphones/4505-7877_7-33801629.html

http://gizmodo.com/5338482/klipsch-image-s4i-review

http://www.engadget.com/2009/09/10/klipsch-image-s4i-hands-on-and-impressions/

 

Picked these up today. Great improvement over my skull candy FMJs.

Klipsch IMAGE S4i Premium Noise-Isolating Headset w/3-button Apple control

 

http://www.amazon.com/Klipsch-IMAGE-S4i-Noise-Isolating-3-button/dp/B00264GYMG/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&s=electronics&qid=1260598192&sr=1-2

 

417U6KaEjNL._SL500_AA280_.jpg

Edited by Dave C

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The SE530's are approaching 2 years now, which is the original warranty, just seems ridiculous that I've needed them replaced twice under that when my lower-end Shures have had no issues over much longer periods. Seems like the Sennheiser IE8 has the best modular cable design for a high-end IEM. Literally the entire thing is disconnectable/user-replaceable. Looks like for now they only make a 2ft (part no. 525720) in addition to the supplied 4ft (525719), but I think they both have right-angle connectors instead of straight which would make it annoying to use with e.g. the MPA-3C on an iPhone.

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Weird...got my replacements from Shure and they're labeled as "SER010" instead of SE530 with the invoice description as "new replacement for SE530". Looks the same though.

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Phil, If you haven't grabbed any yet, Amazon has the Klipsch Image X-5's for $150 shipped today as the gold-box DotD. They have gotten really good reviews. Check the return policy as these are not sold by amazon directly.

 

I have the Klipsch custom-2's and I love the sound. My only gripe is that I have to push them in, then retract them a bit to get a good seal for the best bass. Takes 20-30 seconds of finagling to get them just right. My shure's were always plug-and-play.

 

 

Carlos.

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My mother wants for x-mas wireless headphones that can be used with a TV. Her TV has no headphone jack; it may have and RCA line-out, but I'm not sure yet.

 

What are her options, if any?

 

If she has RCA line out, she can buy an RCA to mini adapter, they're well under $10 bucks usually but you'll need to buy a female-to-female jack converter (also about $10) to make the connection. After that any wireless headphones will work just fine. Unfortunately female-to-female jacks can sometimes be difficult to track down

 

Alternatively you could purchase a cable box/tuner VCR or DVD player unit of some variety that has a basic mini output jack or route through a basic stereo system

 

For RCA to headphones:

 

TV RCA inputs > RCA to mini adapter > (female to female converter) < headphones or bluetooth broadcast adapter

 

should look like this

hookup.jpg

 

The female-female and RCA-mini adapters are specialty devices and will take a bit of hunting. I'd suggest going to somewhere like Radioshack

 

(not endorsing the company here, just linking you so you can see a pic)

 

Stereo RCA to mini adapter

http://www.audiogear.com/cgi-bin/shopper.cgi?key=ADPT-2RCFMSM&preadd=action

 

Female to Female mini adapter (I've usually seen these in black but)

http://www.audiogear.com/cgi-bin/shopper.cgi?preadd=action&key=ADPT-MSFMSF&reference=/cgi-bin/shopper.cgi%3Fsearch%3Daction%26keywords%3Dfemale to female Mini%26searchstart%3D30%26template%3DTemplates/SearchResult.html

 

(you have to make sure you're careful to differentiate you're looking for one to connect to headphones, so they don't try to sell you the wrong size connector)

 

It's very important you ask about whether the parts you're using are shielded, if they're not properly shielded Radio Frequency interference will leak into the signal and ruin it. It's also worth noting that wireless headphones sometimes have serious issues with RF interference (at least they used to) so er, save a receipt and be ready to use wired headphones, just in case.

Edited by OzzelsCousinFred

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Phil, If you haven't grabbed any yet, Amazon has the Klipsch Image X-5's for $150 shipped today as the gold-box DotD. They have gotten really good reviews. Check the return policy as these are not sold by amazon directly.

 

I have the Klipsch custom-2's and I love the sound. My only gripe is that I have to push them in, then retract them a bit to get a good seal for the best bass. Takes 20-30 seconds of finagling to get them just right. My shure's were always plug-and-play.

 

 

Carlos.

 

Im definitely considering these. thanks for the heads up.

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Picked these up today. Great improvement over my skull candy FMJs.

Klipsch IMAGE S4i Premium Noise-Isolating Headset w/3-button Apple control

 

http://www.amazon.com/Klipsch-IMAGE-S4i-Noise-Isolating-3-button/dp/B00264GYMG/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&s=electronics&qid=1260598192&sr=1-2

 

417U6KaEjNL._SL500_AA280_.jpg

 

I'm not a big fan of 'in ear' headphones but these do seem good. Thanks for giving them a mention. I'm in real need of noise isolating headphones as I'm going to be flying a bit in March and my regular pair doesn't serve me well at all on planes (or on the tube trains in London for that matter). I've ordered a set and should have them in a couple of weeks along with a new iPod classic.

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The S4i's do indeed seem very good. I only received them yesterday and have yet to actually go out "into the field" with them so to speak, but will be taking the train at some point this afternoon. I changed the default rubber plugs to a pair of the included alternatives and they fit comfortably (the defaults were wedged so far into my ears that it heightened the sound of my breathing). On a lot of orchestral recordings I can hear the stage ambience, fingers tinkering upon instruments and so on. Impressive. The wire itself is indeed a bit thin though... There is a danger of it getting caught and pulled accidentally. The remote is nice (and was an important factor for me as I tend not to like withdrawing my iPod constantly in public to fiddle with volume and change tracks).

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I've decided it might be time to purchase a new set of headphones. Specifically, I'm looking for a noise-blocking or noise-canceling set for when I travel. The cans I currently use are the Sennheiser HD 600, which are simply put, the best headphones my ears have ever had the pleasure of hearing. The sound quality these things have utterly spoiled me. I have a very difficult time listening to any other headphones, no matter how good they are, and not thinking, "Sure, but the Sennheisers sound so much better." If I could just use them for everything, I would. Unfortunately, with an open back design and large shell, they don't exactly lend themselves well to traveling. Hence, I'm in need of something that will help isolate the sound, both coming in and going out.

 

Kelley mentioned the B&W P5s to me last night on Twitter. Apparently these are the first cans B&W have ever produced and are only available from the Apple Store at this time. They're made specifically to work with the iPod on the iPhone, which words great for me since that's what I own. Has anyone had a chance to try them out yet? I might be heading to the mall tonight and if I do, I could stop at the Apple Store to see if they have a pair to try. The only problem is I'm not entirely sure the Apple Store I normally visit will have them available for a demo.

 

Anyway, I'd like to hear your comments about these headphones or any other recommendations. I'm trying to keep things in the $300 price range so please keep that in mind if you want to offer a suggestion.

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Hmm, for that price range I would still look at the Audio-Technica ATH-ESW9, start off a bit warm and open up nicely with some break in. I use a pair of HD-650s all the time so I know where you're comming from. I doubt that any of the noise canceling cans are going to cut the mustard for you in that price range so look for a good pair of sealed cans. I do own a pair of the Denon AH-NC732, they aren't bad for what they are I guess, come with a nice case and a few cords so you can use them with your ipod, plane jack and so on. But with that said, they are no HD 600s, not by a long shot.

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I managed to get a chance to listen to the P5s last night. Their noise-blocking ability was quite good indeed. Maybe they're not as good as the Bose noise-cancelling phones, but they did a much better job than my Sennheisers. Unfortunately, I can't say I was all that impressed with the sound quality. Compared to what I am used to, they just sound weak and uninspired.

 

I doubt that any of the noise canceling cans are going to cut the mustard for you in that price range so look for a good pair of sealed cans.

 

That's what I'm thinking as well. I can do either that or increase my budget and spend a little more. I'm not in a hurry to make a purchase, so I can wait and save my money for something I really love. After all, I'll probably have them for many years. I'd better make sure I get it right.

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