Thanks to Apple’s ubiquitous advertising, you can walk around town with wires hanging out of your ears without getting strange looks from passersby. Etymotic Research’s ety8 Bluetooth earphones shorten the wires, but these anything-but-discreet earbuds are guaranteed to draw a few sets of eyeballs your way.
The relentless snare drum crack on “Jack of Speed” was enough to make some of the lesser earbuds beg for mercy, but the Etymotic ER-6 Isolators delivered it nearly perfectly. More importantly, they served up Beck’s bass with equal authority.
It’s been our experience that you get what you pay for, more often than not. The ExtremeMac FS1 earbuds, however, fall into the “not” territory. The $150 for-sale sign hanging on these little buggers easily qualifies them as the most expensive earphones of the group, but they certainly didn’t sound like it.
Even after finding a good fit, many people have trouble with earbuds inexorably sliding out of their ear canal. Sennheiser thinks it has the solution—it’s called Twist-to-Fit— but we found this invention to be far worse than the problem.