I had the chance to review these. I won't beat around the bush. I didn't like them for the price.
The following is my review:
I am always looking for the ultimate iPhone compatible earphone. The Klipsch Image X10i are an expensive offering, but their sleek design and excellent microphone and Apple remote implementation are definitely enticing. Let’s take a look…
THE FIT & FINISH
The Klipsch Image X10i come with attractive carrying pouch, which is both hard (protective) and sealed with a magnetic “flip-top” like door. It is definitely the nicest carrying pouch that I’ve seen. It also comes with an airline adapter and 1/4 inch adapter. One of the best attributes of the Image X10i is the silicone sleeves (small, medium and large) which are uniquely oval-shaped to fill the ear canal more comfortably, while offering a superior seal. Klipsch’s ear tip design impresses me since I am usually skeptical of anything silicone in my ear. I usually reach for a pair of comply-foam tips instead, but in this instance I did not find this modification to be necessary. However, I did not like that the Image X10i are designed to be inserted up into the ear with the cable hanging down, instead of behind the ear. For me, earphones designed this way are almost always extremely microphonic and not as comfortable. The Klipsch Image X10i was no exception in this regard.
Some of the best aspects of the X10i are the handy Apple Remote buttons and the superior mic which I found made for an excellent earphone-iPhone experience. The remote control is implemented at the Y-Split section of the cable with the microphone positioned on the back. This microphone does not need to be positioned near the mouth for the sound to be clear, but Klipsch added a helpful shirt clip for those who prefer to have the microphone nearer to their mouth.
ALL ABOUT THE SOUND…
For me, a $350 price tag should boast far superior sonic quality than significantly lesser-priced earphones. I’m not sure the Image X10i does. While the sound is warm and enjoyable when I’m looking for a fun sound for some rock & hip hop, I found the overall tone to be too colored for the asking price. The bass seems to take over a bit; the treble is rolled off a bit; the soundstage narrower than comparatively priced earphones, and the overall sound is just not all that transparent. I expect more from the sound quality of an earphone at this cost.
While listening to Pink Floyd’s “Comfortably Numb” I was underwhelmed by what I perceived as clutter and boom. I quickly switched to Nas’ “New York State of Mind” and the earphone’s tonal balance appeared to deal much better. With Charles Mingus’ “Goodbye Pork Pie Hat” I found the sound far too murky when the bass dropped in and it really detracted from the listening experience. With reggae, the X10i was very impactful and enjoyable. Overall the sound quality was not a winner for me; not for the price.
The Klipsch Image X10i is one of the more expensive in ears on the market today. How they compare against other offerings will depend on what you are looking for from an in-ear headphone. The X10i are one of the smallest and sleekest earphones in the +$300 market today. They are also one of the few at this price to offer a built-in mic and Apple remote. However, it is ultimately my opinion that better earphones are to be had at this price, if sound is priority. I will not say the X10i are a bad sounding earphone, but I will suggest that when in consideration of sound quality alone, I do not feel that the Image X10i are competitively priced. However, people looking for a sleek, attractive, comfortable earphone for their iPhone may still find that the Klipsch Image X10i to be an excellent purchase.