I bought a Logitech H110 for $20 NZD (about $16 USD)
It's the most awful sounding headphone I've ever heard...
The LP and Vibe were both designed before Val got a Head-Fi account (not to mention that the Vibe is a bargain-basement product anyways as far as IEMs go). Every product since then has sounded significantly better.
beats studio. The inner driver pad is hard plastic that just scratch up your ears, really uncomfortable. The bass overwhelms everything else and is quite muffled, lots of impact but not very detailed, and the highs have that muffled sound you get when you like blast laptop speakers or cheap airplane headphone, where they get all distorted.
the marshall headphones were really crappy too.
For £320, the B&W P7 is pretty bad. Muffled with bloated bass & treble that manages to be both rolled off and rough. The Beats Studio 2013, in sound quality alone, is superior and is cheaper.
The P7's stomp on the 2013 Beats to my ears. Sound staging clues are AWOL on the Beats...sounds like the music is being played in a closet. Are they better than the really horrible original Beats? Sure, but they are no where on the level of the P7s to my ears.
I haven't been exposed to many cheap headphones but the worst I've ever bought was the Brainwavz M5 earbuds. They had huge boomy bass that covered almost all the mids and the highs where almost not there except for a huge spike at 10khz that caused massive sibilance. Maybe mine were bad or the reviews are from people who just don't know but I hated them.
klipSSCCCHHH SSSSS4 (klipsch s4)
those things had bass that bled to mids, recessed upper mids, and worst of all, ear piercing SSSSIBILANCCCE (sibilance ).
they were pretty comfy though.
I was new to headphone audio at the time, and i bought them because of some review in cnet saying they rivaled earphones many times their price.
Yeah, I almost jumped on the band wagon with the klipsch back then. It is very easy to stumble upon and you are lead to believe it's a pretty good headphone until you dig deeper into the subject.
I am sooo glad I didn't get those.
I have an S4i for casual out-around-town listening that I've had for years, and I've never bothered to get something better after my old Westone 3 was broken. They're not terrible, but they're certainly not worth the asking price.
That's nice, but the pair I heard failed to live up to the measurements. I've played both on one of the better smartphones for SQ, the Galaxy Note 2 w/ Neutron Player, and the Beats were unquestionably better. They also have below average comfort and a poorly designed headband which creates a pressure point on my head over long-term use.
If a company cannot release a £320 headphone targeted for portable devices without QC issues and basic ergonomics, they are entitled for criticism, just as surely as Beats were.