Shootout: We Review The Best $100 Earbuds

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Danthrax66

Ultimate ears recommends playing their earbuds for 24 hours or more to break in the speaker it makes a difference in the bass/lows.

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BeEazy10

I own a pair of Bose IN The Ear EarBuds and the sound quality is amazing and while jogging they never have fallen out of my ear. How do these earbuds hold up to a nice jog?

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carickw

I believe all of these earphones are noise isolating so they will say in the ear better than the Bose. These have silicon or foam tips that form to your ear to block out outside noise and sit firmly in the ear. To some they are uncomfortable because there is pressure against your ear, but I have not found this to be true, and find the earphones with the foam tip to be the most comfortable headphones I have worn, forgetting I have them in.

I'm glad you like your Bose, but I have not really enjoyed their products as the response does not seem natural to me. Compared to some other headphones in the same range, music sounds much different. Also I don't like how the IEMs sit in your ear with no isolation.

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Danthrax66

Bose are overpriced try out the some of these or get a pair of ultimate ear triple.fi 10's ((eah they cost a lot) but you will hear differences.

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JonPhillips

Per the comments about how the article is paginated (multipage, excessively broken up): We're working on the most elegant way to present multi-product review round-ups. We take your comments to heart, and we'll continue to work on the best way to present them. The current kludge you see here has to do with making sure that individual reviews look right -- and read coherently, in a totally self-encapsulated way -- for people who navigate straight to a product review page via google search. Obviously, we still have work to do on this!

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carickw

Having "in-line" mic as one of the criteria for rating seems dumb.

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MrMick

Having an in-line mic in your earbud cable is hardly dumb if your phone doubles as your digital music player and you need to take a phone call. I don't, so it's not an important feature for me personally, but I'm sure it is to a lot of other folks.

Michael Brown, Reviews Editor

Twitter: brownieshq 

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reymomo99

Lame.

Click on

V-Moda
Remix Remote ($89)

Gets you to:

   You are not authorized to access this page.

More Lame!!!

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GJEMaximumPC

Honestly, a lot of audio geeks may dislike what I'm gonna type here, but earphones are for the most part pointless to invest in.  Every earphone set I've had, from major-brand to generic, tends to be relatively the same to me.  And the greatest point to show is that all earphones eventually, within 6 months to a year, start to fall-apart, get too twisted up not to work, or have a cable stripped somehow (and that happens with me all the time even though I look after my possessions)

 I guess if you are an audio-snob, you'll want to invest in expensive things like Bose.  However, if  you're like me, and you can't tell the difference in audio between a 10 dollar pair and a 50 dollar pair, go with the cheapos.  When the cheapos get lost or broken, and it will eventually happen, you won't feel so bad about it.  I got 3 emergency pair of cheapo over-the-ear phones I got from Dollar Tree (colored in tacky lime green too).  The cheapo ones I've got right now have lasted a month, do the job for me, and are still in shape for now. 

 Oh yeah, noise cancellation...  just put the MP3 player of choice up to maximum level.  That cancels out a lot of annoying things. 

 However, if you have to keep up appearances for your friends go ahead and waste  your money on superflous earphones.  Don't want the cool kids taunting you. 

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Danthrax66

lol you think bose makes quality audio parts. You probably got some knockoff earphones if you don't think there is a difference or you have low quality shitty mp3 or a shitty player. You also sound like you abuse your heaphones needlessly I have only had 1 bad pair of headphones and they were cheap shit that the internals of one earpiece broke. I have had ear buds for years and they don't break. Get a pair of genuine sennheiser earphones from amazon (sold by amazon not it's partners) and you will hear a difference. The woodees are also good..

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deject

Yeah crank up the volume and ruin your hearing, why not.  That's a great way to go deaf by the time you're 45.

The other point I want to make is that the source material you're using makes a huge difference.  I bet you're one of those who is totally fine with 128kbit CBR MP3s.  If that's what you're listening to, well then no shit you can't tell the difference between $10 pieces of shit and a decent pair of earbuds.

 

While there is no doubt that a lot of the audiophile market is total bullshit, that doesn't mean people are snobs because they want to spend more for better earbuds.  It doesn't bother me  that you don't care what headphones you use, if you're cool with listening to terrible sound, then by all means continue on.  I like to have better sound than that, and I'm willing to pay more for it.  This has nothing about brands or looking cool.

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carickw

Even if you were to spend $500+ on headphones, why would that make you a snob? If you buy (or build) a computer for $4K+ when you could buy one for $300 does that make you a snob as well? If you spend that much on a computer, you can appreciate the difference, and to you, the cost is justified. The same is true for "audiophiles."

 There is clear separation between budget headphones, midrange headphones, and audiophile headphones at least to me. If you don't see that, buy what you want and let me buy what I want without being a douche about it. 

 With that being said, I wish the Westone UM1s were compared here. I really enjoyed them while I had them.

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Stinky Fartface

Since when did everyone who cares even a little about audio quality get branded a "snob?" Seriously I don't think a desire to listen to music that doesn't sound like it's being pumped through a tin can should give me such elite status. These are $100 earbuds we're talking about here. You want snobbery you could easily spend 10x more for dubious advantages.

 Personally, audio-douches like you who insult everyone for remotely being interested in audio quality are much more annoying than the "snobs" that show up in the audiophile circles. Intentional ignorance is nothing to be proud of.

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machew100

If you listen to a pair of gummi's aka piece of crap $10 wal mart earbuds, then go listen to anything in the $100 range, you will go "wow, i never heard that before" to at least something in your favorite songs.  For most people that have crappy headphones, they go "I didn't know this song had bass" or "I never heard the soft vocals in the background" etc.  It's things along those lines that just open your music up to the point where it's worth spending the extra money for details if you honestly consider yourself a big fan of music.  You owe it to yourself to hear what so many people enjoy at at least a moderate level of quality, not low.  Also, if you looked into earbuds at ALL and think that they're worthless because they break, you're missing a huge point; certain companies offer lifetime warranties.  For instance, Koss offers a lifetime warranty on nearly all their products, and for people like you that should be a huge selling point.  If you are worried about durability, search specifically for companies with lifetime warranties, it's that easy.  Don't depreciate your music with crappy gummi earbuds, especially if you're going to spend $100 on an mp3 player.  While you're at it, make sure get some decent audio bitrate and ignore P.O.S. 96 kb/s boost mobile ringtone quality files.  In short, avoid anything from Limewire.  Being the "audio geek" I am, I think it's sad people don't care about audio quality.

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bmomjian

Multipage, Boo.  Even "Print" format doesn't show the entire article.  I am not interested enough to jump through hoops to read this.  I hope the author enjoyed writing it, because I am not going to read it.

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ABouman

Sorry all - bit of a snafu there, but it should be all taken care of now!

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nsvander

The VMODA page still has a permission error!!!  Epic Fail!!!

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Number Six

The very last review page: http://www.maximumpc.com/article/reviews/vmoda_remix_remote

Still gives permission error.

-Six

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Number Six

.

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Number Six

Also, it would be great if you could have used a known killer set of earphones, the Shure E4g for example, as a zero-point reference.

Review of the E4g's are here:
http://www.maximumpc.com/article/Shure-E4g-Earbuds

You also mention that the Klipsch have an "in-line mac."  That's pretty impressive and must be the worlds smallest Apple computer ever.

-Six

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kiaghi7

That nobody is allowed to see them!

 

Your concept of reality would be torn asunder and the world as you know it would cease to be... Down would be up, dogs would have litters of kittens, ice cream would taste like liver and brussel's sprouts!!!

 

Well... Either that or somebody royally screwed up in setting the link authorities to "public" rather than "private"...

 

I'm still leaning toward my original assessment though...

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Citizen Snips

it says I'm not authorized to click any of the review links

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winmaster

Apparently Maximumpc.com doesn't think that we are qualified to read earbud reviews. Fine then, I can't afford to spend that much on earbuds anyway.  

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 

The quick brown fox jumps over the lazy dog.

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Peanut Fox

OK.  So you know where you stand then ;)

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