I don't get how people can listen to these off onboard sound and be happy with them, maybe its just my music preferance, but without an amp I found them slow, boring, grainy, and a little muddy. Since I didn't want to invest in an amp I returned them, I had them for about 1-2 weeks and there were no cracks. I guess I got lucky with that. For the record I listen to very fast and very heavy metal, and some electronica and blues. It did great with the electronic genres, and ok with the blues, but for metal it was a complete letdown. However after trying these I cannot go back to my Grados, I now know what a soundstage is. Take my impressions with a grain of salt though, as I only could try them out of onboard sound and my dad's stereo, which is just an old Sony 5 slot CD player.