earbud paired with separate audiologist molding?Hi, total forum newbie and relative audio-ignoramus here, so please go easy on me:-). Great info about earbuds from all of you--awesome earbud breakdown from kostalex! My situation is pretty unique, but I figured I'd seek y'all's advice anyway.
I'm hearing impaired--not horribly so, but enough to need hearing aids. I love listening to music as often as possible, and that usually means portable (via my 80gig Ipod). Until recently, I've been using Sennheiser MX450s, but with a twist: I attach them to a special in-ear molding that I had my audiologist make (i.e., when I want to hear music, I take my hearing aids out and put the mold/Sennheiser bud combo in their place). The point is to get good quality sound into my canal so that I don't have to crank up the volume too much and further damage my hearing. Big headphones are typically out for me b/c they're not in the canal and I have to crank 'em up too much (ditto unaided buds). I can't afford the highest-end custom-made Shure/Ultimate Ears in-ear stuff right now (the hearing aids were expensive enough!:-). And the few non-custom-made in-canal units I've tried were very uncomfortable (compared to the moldings my audiologist made, which exactly fit my canals, of course). So I'm pretty much limited to the molding/earbud combo for now.
The reason I'm posting is because my Senns are starting to short out on one side and I need new buds. I was just gonna get the MX500s (can't seem to find the 450s anymore, and I kinda like the volume control on the 500s anyway, given Ipod's pain-in-the-butt volume control), but then I heard about the Yuins. So to bring my longwinded post to a close, here are my questions: would an 80gig Ipod power the PK1s sufficiently to make it worth the extra cost compared to the PK2s (I wouldn't get an amp)? And is either Yuin unit so much better than Senn MX500s to justify their extra cost (i.e., even the cheaper PK2s are more than thrice the price of the Senns, though still within my budget; the PK1s are at the upper limits of my budget:-)?
And a bonus question: do any of you by any chance have any experience (or know anyone else who has experience) with the special audiologist mold/earbud combo I'm describing? The molds are vastly inferior to UltimateEar-type designs b/c they don't contain any electronics (they're just conduits for bud sounds), so I'm curious to hear if any audiophiles out there have opinions on the quality of sound that comes out them, and whether the Yuin's apparent superiority would really come through when connected to such moldings. Any even vaguely relevant advice would be much much appreciated:-). Thanks!