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Gasp! A thread where sound quality is not of concern! Need suggestions for isolation, durability,...

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 

A family member is looking for a set of isolating headphones that meet the following requirements, in order of importance:

 

Isolate well - She wants to use her headphones in loud environments.

 

Budget: Must be under $40 U.S. She will mistreat them. Spending

too much money would be impractical.

 

Convenient - The headphones must not require a steep learning curve. IEM's are out of the question. The headphones must be easy to use by the common layperson. Must be able to insert headphones with one hand (without reaching over and pulling up on ear with the other hand).

 

Durable - I'm looking for headphones that can stand up to abuse. Apparently she "goes through headphones' in under a year. Like hotcakes. I'm assuming she tosses her headphones into her gym bag, and crams them into her pockets, too. I can't convince her to change her habits. And of course, she uses them while exercising - which means sweat on headphones...

 

The reason I listed isolation as the most important factor is because I informed her about the importance of hearing protection. Listening to music in loud environments with headphones that don't provide isolation puts the user at great risk for noise induced hearing loss.

 

I realize that I'm posting this kind of thread in a forum where sound-quality is the most important factor concerning headphones. However, I still feel that head-fi members would be more knowledgeable about the topics I covered in this post, compared to some of the users of some other forums.

 

If this thread becomes successful, I'll recommend the pair of headphones suggested to friends who are looking for a "beater" to use during situations where sound-quality is NOT a priority.

 

Thanks for your time.

 

P.S. I figured that isolation + durability + other factors (without regard to sound quality) make my issue unique enough to start a new thread. I did make a cursory search.

post #2 of 7

if your not willing to use an IEM I don't know how you will ever achieve strong isolation especially for $40. You may wish to recommend simple earcups designed to block out noise. If not you might be able to look at the cheapest sony active noise canceling headphones but I don't think they will work in really loud environments.

post #3 of 7
Quote:
Originally Posted by vYu223 View Post


Convenient - The headphones must not require a steep learning curve. IEM's are out of the question. The headphones must be easy to use by the common layperson. Must be able to insert headphones with one hand (without reaching over and pulling up on ear with the other hand).

 

 

I personally think that IEMs do not necessarily have a steep learning curve.  I would guess that anyone could just pick them up and put them on without any problems.  I only use that "pull up on ear" trick when I want a fairly deep insertion but most of the time I could just put them on with one hand.

 

I would say that you should not disregard IEMs just because they need some getting used to.  I use IEMs at the gym a lot and they provide some very good isolation.

 

If you just wanna try them out, you should be able to grab some $12 IEMs.  Granted the SQ won't be lifechanging at that price range but you should be able to experience fitting them in.  You can probably grab some cheap SkullCandys at any electronic store in your area.  Or better yet, grab a Meelec M6, cheap with good SQ.
 

post #4 of 7

Trade her in for an upgrade.

post #5 of 7

steep learning curve? confused_face%281%29.gif

 

just stick it in your ear and enjoy!  not every IEM requires some complicated cranial gyrations to listen to!

 

an IEM is absolutely the correct solution here, that is the only way you will get any decent isolation in a comfortable and compact package for under $40... just make sure to get one that is of compact size and has a light cord so regular insertion is easy.  My wife has a cheap pair of Sony IEM earbud thingies from Best Buy that you can just plop in your ear and enjoy.  They sound good enough for her and are easy to use.

post #6 of 7
I would suggest IEMs, but if your girlfriend would just throw them into bags without any case for protection, I'm sure that majority of the budget IEMS would not be able to last a month.
post #7 of 7

M9 will be great for IEM, as for Headphones I don't know.

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Head-Fi.org › Forums › Equipment Forums › Portable Headphones, Earphones and In-Ear Monitors › Gasp! A thread where sound quality is not of concern! Need suggestions for isolation, durability, and convenience.