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Etymotic ER-4 Cord Noise Mod

post #1 of 24
Thread Starter 
** EDIT FROM THE FUUUUTURE **
Since my sig is "Grandfathered" be aware this is an old mod that I no longer use. But for those who love the ER4 but hate the microphonics, this is the best solution I could come up with...

this modification for the etymotics er4s or er4p is to a) make them rain resistant, b) keep them securely in the ears c) eliminate the cord noise and d) make getting the seal easy and consistant. this mod does all four very well. it contains some elements of other previous mods, but refined, added to and perfected.

what you'll need:
a) "earhugger" type ear braces as shown here:

you can get these with cheap headphones for about $5 - $10 at many stores. the "ultimate earhugger" model comes with metal clasps to hold the cord in place. otherwise, black thread wrapped around works fine too.

b) clear shrink tubing from radioshack. the one sold in the red, white, blue and clear multipack is exactly the right size for the er4s body.
http://www.radioshack.com/product/in...entPage=search
(thanks lucifix for the correct url.)

c) shure "ultra-soft sleeves" for the e5c canalphones. i have average sized ear canals and the medium size fits well. they are listed as, "Shure Ultra-Soft Sleeves for E1, E3, E4, E5 & E500 (5 Pr) Item No: srtipultra758-5-1" here:
http://store.yahoo.com/earplugstore/sheaandmoac.html

MOD:
1) cut a small lenght of the clear shrink tube about the size of the ety body plus the plug. remove the ety tips and clean the body with a dry cloth. the shrink tube should just fit.

you see how the shrink tube overlaps the plug? this is to keep rain out of the connection. it also adds structural strength to the ety body. since the shrink tube is already snug against the ety body, only a little heat from a blow dryer on low is needed to shrink the clear tube around the plug.

2) remove the earbuds from the earhugger braces and discard or give them away. there is a groove running along the braces. place the ety cord into the groove at the base as shown in the first picture. then slip the clamp over the end or wrap string around it and tie it off.


3) the simplest part: replace the ety tips (sleeves) with the shure ones.

here is what it looks like in:

notice the cord loops around and under the earlobe. it is close enough so it does not scrape against your collar or itself.

good luck and please post any feedback or comments to this thread.
post #2 of 24
that looks VERY cool. how does it do with microphonics?
post #3 of 24
Thread Starter 
cord noise is eliminated 100% with this mod. you can still hear bone induced sound like footsteps, but that isn't nearly as loud or distracting as cord noise.
post #4 of 24
Interesting.

Do you think the Shure tips sound better than the Ety's? I didn't know they were interchangeable. I used the foamies for awhile, and lately I've been favoring the triples and like them better (I think )

The cord looks like it makes a sharp turn down from the connection to the ear hugger. Am I seeing that right? That may not be the best for the wire, long term.

Pretty cool, though. I like the clear tube mod for moisture protection.
post #5 of 24
Thread Starter 
i do like the shure tips better for sound. bass is improved, but best of all for me the seal and internal air pressure is always the same, so i geta consistant sound. that wasn't happening with the triflanges for me.

the wire does take a down turn, but i've been using this every day for months now without a hint of wire wear. there is a little play so the wire isn't bent in half or under pressure.

the best part is i just pop the earhugger braces on, insert the etys, do a quick equalization of air, and that's it. no more fussing around with the seal, or trying to loop the cord over your ears, or cord rubbing noise. no more cord weight putting pressure on your ears. and i feel safe now walking around in the seattle rain. also, when you take then out they dangle safely under your ears, so it's great for work when someone wants to talk with you. the shures are just so much easier to insert and get a good seal. and yes, the bores on the shure tips matches the ety's tube perfectly.
post #6 of 24
That is VERY cool. How close are the tolerances on length. Or does it remain adjustable?
post #7 of 24
Thread Starter 
hi daycart1! thanks!
if you mean the distance from the braces-->wire-->ety's then yes it is adjustable. the wires are held only with a slight clamp, so they do slide in case they get snagged. i haven't had another eardrum blowout from accellerated ety ejection again, though.
post #8 of 24
I'm not 100% sold on the ear huggers yet, but I DEFINITELY want to try the Shure tips. I hear ya about the pressure. I use my portable setup (Ipod, Total Airhead, Ety 4p) every morning to workout and the pressure variation thing gets to me.

The shrink tube sounds good too for a couple different reasons for me. It looks like it would protect the plug not only from rain, but **ahem** sweat from working out. Sounds gross, but I've been worried about that a little.

Also, it looks like it provides some strain relief for the plug too.

Thanks alot for the info!!
post #9 of 24
Thread Starter 
no problem, 3dcadman.

well, if you happen to see some of those cheap earhugger type phones at the store some time, spend the $5 and give it a try. i won't wear mine without them.
post #10 of 24
Very interesting. I'll try to find some earhugger phones (in France) !
post #11 of 24
Hi,

Is this what you are talking about?
http://www.radioshack.com/product/in...entPage=search

I wanted to make sure it is the correct ones before I get it shipped over to me, here in Singapore.
post #12 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by lucifix View Post
Hi,

Is this what you are talking about?
http://www.radioshack.com/product/in...entPage=search

I wanted to make sure it is the correct ones before I get it shipped over to me, here in Singapore.
Stop the link is for heatshrink tube. They can be find in any electronic part store. You don't need international shipping for heatshrink.

If your talking about earhugger those are very crappy headphones that has the advantage of comming with an removable around the ear sleeve since you don't care about the actual phone any wannabe clone would do. Here earhugger a clone from radioshack

http://www.radioshack.com/product/in...entPage=family

But then again. you should try to find them locally first. I don't know about Singapore but there is plenty of cheap clone everywhere here
post #13 of 24
Yes, but I have never ever come across this shrink tubing ever before in Singapore.

It is a mordern city country but I have yet to come across these. We arent really into DIY stuff.

Could someone ship it over pleasE? ill pay.
post #14 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by lucifix View Post
Yes, but I have never ever come across this shrink tubing ever before in Singapore.

It is a mordern city country but I have yet to come across these. We arent really into DIY stuff.

Could someone ship it over pleasE? ill pay.
Here quick google

EDIT: here you go
http://www.rssingapore.com/cgi-bin/b...eID=sgnetscape

EDIT: with all different size
http://www.rssingapore.com/cgi-bin/b...cape&Nr=avl:sg
post #15 of 24
Wow, thanks.
This is more for industrial use... oh well it serves the purose.

May I know the diameter of the tube pleasE?
thanks Dan,
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