Pros: Price, Clarity, Soundstage
Cons: Comfort, Bass, Fit, Quality
This review was written from the perspective of the average user, someone who will buy these for iPod use. I did not use an amp for this review because the average user more than likely won't have one.
Came in a hard plastic case, wasn't a fan of the yellow, but everything necessary came, including various ear tips. Not the best packaging, but it wasn't bad.
Before I had the RE0 I owned the Apple Dual Driver IEMs and various earbuds, even Skullcandy (don't ask why) and compared to them the RE0 ranked one of the worse. The first gripe is the terrible design of the IEM itself, I can't imagine anyone could have though it was a good idea to put ridges on the metal that is in direct contact with the ear. I've heard numerous complaints of irritation caused by the ridges, including myself. A friend suggested to try the double flanged tips. I tried but they were horribly flimsy and the sizes given were either too big, or too small. I generally fit in mediums, so I found this weird. I resorted to the basic tips. After fighting to get a decent seal, irritating my ear in the process, they were finally in and secure, though they were the least comfortable IEM I had ever had in, yes worse than Skullcandy.
The ridges make another appearance here. I want to reiterate, who thought the ridges would be a good idea? The cables were as thin and frail feeling as the Skullcandy's I had used in the past, which definitely isn't a good sign. The Apple Dual Driver IEMs cable certainly felt much sturdier.
This is where the RE0 get the most praise, and I admit, they do sound pretty good. They sound was reminiscent of my Ad700, but for some reason not as fun to listen to. These are very cold sounding headphones, analytical if you will, in my opinion. I can't say I had fun listening to any genre on these, though, and I repeat, they do sound good.
The mids and highs were clear. There is no disputing this. For the price I think they may be the cleanest sounding IEMs in this department. The lows were very unimpressive. You could certainly hear them, but there was no feeling to them. The extension on them was non-existent. The bass was punchy, but very thin.
The soundstage was pretty decent for an IEM of their price I must say, probably the best in this price bracket. No complaints here.
Isolation was nothing special here. I could hear my surroundings alright with no music playing. Microponics aren't too bad compared to others.
Overall the headphones left me with an analytical feeling. I felt like I was dissecting each track, which made music listening very boring. These are also not good for varied genres, anything with distortion or heavy bass was unlistenable for me, the RE0 simply sucked all of the life out of them. They didn't really shine with any genre, but clean music sounded alright on them.
For the price these are not bad, but they are blindly recommended over much better choices. There are far more comfortable IEMs with a better build feel to them for under $100. Sadly though those IEMs MSRP for ~$100, these retailed for $250 at launch. For $79 I think they are fairly priced, but certainly don't deserve the praise they receive in my opinion.
Please keep in mind my ratings are in comparison to similarly priced IEMs, not $1,000 IEMs.