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Headphones.com Creative Aurvana In Ear 3 giveaway Part 2!!!!!

post #1 of 55
Thread Starter 

Dear Head-fiers,


We are excited to announce that we are giving away a second pair of Creative Aurvana In-Ear 3  earphones to one lucky head-fier. 


We tried to get “creative” (pun intended) when thinking about what would be an awesome theme for this contest.  After a bit of brainstorming, we realized that the contest was staring us right in the face…


DavidMahler feels that the Aurvana 3’s are the best sounding under $150 earphone he’s heard, and he’s pretty confident that they’re “da bomb” (his words), but of course, he hasn’t heard all the earphones ever created….




We ask you head-fiers to consider the price ($150) and name the best sounding IEM you have ever used for that price or under.  Of course, we expect some people to share some of the same opinions on earphones.  That is OK, your choice doesn’t have to be uniquely yours, but your description of why it is your favorite should be uniquely your own.  We don’t ask for a long review here, but simply a description of 150 words or less as to why the earphone you choose is the best you’ve ever used at $150 or less.


The winner will be chosen by our staff for having the most comprehensive and/or unique description as to why they chose their earphone.


The winner will be announced on Cyber Monday (November 28th). 

Check out our Black Friday & Cyber Monday Headphone deals




To read what previous winner Kidcharlemagne thought of the In-Ear 3 please see his review



Good luck to all!


Not feeling lucky? We are happy to extend our exclusive head-fi discount on the In Ear 3.  Click HERE to receive a 15% discount off the In Ear 3 (special discount expires 11/31/11)

Edited by HeadphonesCom - 11/23/11 at 4:32pm
post #2 of 55

This sounds like fun!


My first "good" set of IEM's were Shure e2c's. Before that I had never listened to anything better than $5 cheapo headphones and i-buds. I got them at an apple store and was absolutely ecstatic. When I got home I fired up Dark side of the moon and sat down in my computer chair. The sound literally blew me away, I had never heard anything quite as awesome. There were sounds I had never heard before and all of the instruments stood on their own. Before all the music seemed to be compressed into one sound, but after that I could actually hear the instruments separated out and appreciate the music.


This was a life changing experience for me. I stayed attached to my music almost 24/7 until I met my wife. I lucked out by falling in love with an audiophile. Unfortunately my little e2c's didn't stand up to both of us using them non-stop, the cables eventually cracked near the earpiece and they were rendered useless.


Those were fantastic IEM's and I will never forget them, they changed my life and helped me to appreciate music.

post #3 of 55

Oh bugger, I haven't listened to very many high-quality IEM's.


The best sounding IEM's I've heard under $150 would be the V-Moda Vibes (which are the only earphones I've heard over $25 USD, sadly).


They were my favorite IEM's at the time since they offered more clarity in the mids and highs than any other earphone I had heard before in addition to having a shiny metallic housing which was surprisingly lightweight.

Edited by miceblue - 11/2/11 at 10:28pm
post #4 of 55

The best IEM I've ever heard under $150 is the Ultimate Ears Triple Fi 10.  I purchased it from the Thanksgiving Black Friday sale for $99.  I have owned other IEM's that were more technically proficient (UM3x, RE252, ER4S, etc), but the TF10 is the best balance of fun and great sound.  It was also my first taste of a "top-tier" IEM, and my favorite universal.


One of the things I really like about the Triple Fi 10 is the treble, it has great detail and extension.  It has great bass impact and depth.  The sound stage is also very wide for an IEM.  It is airy and wide. All styles of music sounds great on this earphone, it's not limited to certain genres of music.


I liked my Triple Fi 10 so much I got it reshelled into a custom.  Hopefully, it will immortalize it for a while.

post #5 of 55

All things considered, I would probably say that the Monster Turbine Pro Gold is my favorite headphone that I've gotten for under $150 (not retail, of course).

In terms of sound, the MTPG catered exactly to my needs. I'm an audiophile, but I'm probably a basshead even before that. When I popped the MTPG in my ears for the first time, I was pretty blown away by the skull-thumping bass. It might not have had the detail in the midrange or high end of a headphone like the TF10, but that's a sacrifice I'm willing to make when listening to bass-heavy electronica. And the MTPG definitely doesn't slack in the other ranges. The soundstage is uniquely forward and aggressive, characterizing the set with a distinct and unforgettable signature. I won't argue that they have the most accurate reproduction for their price, but they definitely gave me the most fun for my buck.

Thanks for doing the contest! It's fun to read other's experiences, too.

post #6 of 55

Well, I will try to explain myself but english is not my main language, i'm sorry for the gramatical or ortographic mistakes. :-p


Starts from here:


The best IEM's I've heard are the Westone UM1's, before that I just listen to cheap earbuds and Senns CX300. Here in my country is really hard to find good headphones, and listen to UM1's was a revelation to me: excelent balance, great soundstage, great fit and comfort, sadly a little weak in the bass departament but it's still there, well defined and present.

After heard that IEM's, all become an avalanche, headphone amps (DIY), better sound cards (From onboard to X-Fi Xtreme Music and now Asus Xonar Essence ST), dacs (GrubDAC, pup1 dac), better headphones (K701, HD-555, Klisch Image S4 (S4's not better than UM1's, just "different")), iPod Nano 4G and Sansa Fuze.

So, I think that's the best IEM's I ever heard, because it really opened a door to a whole new world of music listening... And a hole in my wallet. k701smile.gif


The end.

Edited by anddy78 - 11/2/11 at 4:21pm
post #7 of 55

Best for me (and still using them) are the Brainwavz B2.  Got them for the introductory price of $129.  Interestingly enough I also had the SE425s - but sold them and kept the B2.


The things I love about them:

 - very comfortable, fit flush with my ear, and can sleep with them in

 - excellent isolation (with Shure olives) - great for long-haul plane trips

 - well built, good cable, with low microphonics

 - good accessories - including small carry case

 - really good SQ (to my tastes) - great mids, could use a little more bass (but what is there is punchy and defined), and sparkly and detailed highs


Overall quite balanced - just maybe a touch light on the low end, and a touch high on the upper end - but defintiely enjoyable.


Really good value for money.

post #8 of 55

I have to name the Ultimate Ears 700 the best IEM under $150. I have sampled a great number of IEMs from different companies and price points. To this day, the UE700 remains a personal favorite. I would like to see the Aurvana In-Ear 3, also a dual-BA IEM, challenge that. 


On the outside, the UE700 is preciously small and irresistabily cute. It is no larger than a jelly bean, yet inside the tiny housing there sits two BA drivers. This characteristic alone wins the UE700 much favor and brownie points over other IEMs. The Brainwavz B2 looks unpolished and crude in comparison. The Phiaton PS200 tried to look futuristic but ends up pethatically fat next to the UE700. There are only two other dual-BA IEMs that can hold its own, in terms of looks, against the UE700, Audio-Technica CK10 and Jays q-Jay. 


What I like most about UE700 is its outstanding sound. It is very clean and detailed, second only to my ER4-PT. The treble sparkles but never too bright or shrill. The vocals are deliciously smooth with a hint of warmth. The bass is tight and controlled, although slightly on the thin side. Next to it, my CK10's treble sounds brain-scrapingly shrill and unrefined, ER4-PT sounds a bit cold and lifeless, TF10 sounds thick and muddy, SE535 sounds mundane and unexciting, EX1000 feels bulky and awkwardly uncomfortable. I could go on and just keep name-dropping, but I think my point is clear. 


It's a pity that the UE700 has such piss poor durability (the old, straight plug design), but I am ready to reshell them into customs as soon as my time and budget allows. After all, they are my favorite IEM under $150. 





post #9 of 55

The Atrios M5 are the best $150ish IEMs I've owned.  It has decent bass for IEMs, but I really like the clarity and fit of the IEMs.  Even though they're IEMs, they sound better than any headphones up to the low $100 range that I've used, and extract a remarkable amount of detail from portable media players.


I'd be interested in hearing if these IEMs can replace my M5s, as my M5s have faithfully held up for years through travel across multiple continents, long work sessions, and incidental abuse.  The M5s are comfortable to sleep with whether you're in a plane or a subway, have survived many accidental 'knocking out of the laptop' scenarios, and are a strong independent performer, even without a USB sound card.  Last but not least, they fit so snugly that I don't need any noise cancellation, and sometimes just leave them in to act as mini-earplugs wink.gif

Edited by Elysian - 11/2/11 at 4:54pm
post #10 of 55

Retail price or used? 


Well, the best pair of IEM's for under $150 (if you look hard enough, used) is the Etymotic ER4, which happens to be one of the first IEM's ever created. That doesn't do the current market any favors in regards to how much it's advanced sound-wise. Why is it my favorite? Well, my definition of "awesome" is different from most. For example, I currently have an HE500 loaner (which I really need to mail out--stupid early post office closing times) and while they wow'ed me at first, they don't sound like a quantifiable upgrade from my similar sounding ATH-2's. They sound "good" of course! But, "awesome?" Not incredibly so. They do pretty much everything very well with their very agreeable warm, yet trebly, sound, but due to a strange upper midrange they have, they aren't justifiable for $700.  


The ER4 however, can be described as cold, clinical, and all that good stuff that most people would absolutely hate. Since I'm a freak, that's the exact reason I love the ER4, and really need to get to buying a pair. Why you ask? Well, even though they're brighter than reality, they present a sound that is goosebump-inducing every single time I try them out. Sure, they err on "too detailed," but I adore the minute details they basically thrust into the song. Sure, they don't really have much oomph to speak of in the lower end, but that's A-OK! I'd easily trade that for goosebumps. Sure, they have a really funky cable, but...that's not really okay. Regardless, I like the ER4 because despite their flaws, they still never fail to give the most goosebumps of any headphone I've ever tried. Period. 


Edited to clean up the terrible prose. I still have no idea how I managed to write something that made me cringe as much as I did. blink.gif

Edited by Ishcabible - 11/23/11 at 12:38pm
post #11 of 55

Well, I am quite new to headphone audiophilia and have never worn an IEM, So this post will be about which ones I would want for under $150.  I would purchase a shure se215 for two reasons:

This particular IEM, from what I understand, is comfortable due to the memory foam tips that are included.  The "stay in the ear design" looks like it sits nicely in the ear canal and leaves room for the cable.

Good bass response, even if it is very slightly accentuated, sounds nice to me for the type of music that I like and that is what these IEM's sound like from what I've seen and read.  The se215's go for about $100. If I win the Creative Aurvana's, I'll buy the se215's and compare!

post #12 of 55

Imho, the Ultimate Ears 600 is so far the best IEM I have heard under $150. When I tried the UM3X a few weeks ago, it freakishly sounded like the UE600 but the UM3X has a better bass punch, more clarity and a much better instrument separation. Looking at the huge price difference between the two, my mouth is sealed. UE600 retails for about AUD$150 but I got them for less than $70. I am not a basshead so I am not really concerned about the lack of bass.


The UE600 is quite small and fits nicely in my ears. I use the silicone tips which are soft and comfortable. Clarity is pleasing and it sounds sweet n' smooth. For people with a budget, I can happily say that they're the best under $150. 


My wallet's happy. My ears are happy. Wanna put a frown on 'em? Bring It On.

post #13 of 55

I only own 2 pairs of earphones:

1) Apple earphone...


2) Monster Turbine Pro Copper that my friend got me. It sounds considerably better than my pair of Apple earphones except i am not a big fan of the earbuds provided. It came with a variety of earbuds but only the foam one fitted best and most comfortably so...


Hope i could win this and expand my hearing pleasure =]

post #14 of 55

Ive got the VSonic GR07 for 144 shipped from Lendmeurears about 5 weeks ago during their old stock promotion.


Initial impressions we're very 'meh' and I understand that they may sound 'boring' due to a balanced sound, but I felt the IE7s and TF10s were much more fun. The IE7 and Westone UM1 had far better comfort and CABLE QUALITY! The cables on the GR07 is BAD! tough, springy and very stiff, they wont stay behind my ears at all! (cable guides do help). After a few days of use, I felt the temptation to cut my 'losses' by returning or putting them on sale.


Then after a week in, my ears start opening up to them and I'm absolutely floored by their sonic abilities. Starting from bottom up, their bass, controlled and not exaggerated with the right amount of decay along with extension, texture and detail that is unheard of! They reach down very low while offering an amazing detail and texture on bass notes that I've never encountered in an IEM before, not the IE7, Shure se530 or TF10 (though the TF10 does have great impact, GR07 has this classy, matured and controlled take on bass). For me this is the perfect bass. Their mids are creamy and lush, with a hint of sweetness, yet never overtly lush like the IE7 or unrealistic like most BA driver IEMs I've heard. Their treble is not as hot and exciting as the TF10s but they do extend almost as high and are crisp, clear and detailed all the way without ever sounding too shrill or sibilant. There is something about a very well made single dynamic driver that sounds more cohesive/coherent and natural than any multi-driver BA IEM can ever produce, and this is a very well made dynamic.


Simply put, plugged straight into my iPhone 4, I'm loving them more and more everyday. When listening to a large playlist, sometimes there are some songs which I feel I'm not in the mood to listen to and have a tendency of skipping them, but with the GR07, I rarely feel that desire, which to me is an earmark of a tremendous tremendous product. For under 150, the sonic abilities of the GR07 is astounding!!


Quoting Steve Job's last words..

'Oh Wow.. Oh wow..    oh wow......'






Edit: Shaving off some words to meet the 150 word limit

Edited by wilzc - 11/21/11 at 4:02am
post #15 of 55

I essentially threw out my old iBuds in favor of Altec Lansing backbeat 106's, but they broke twice. A month or two later, I moved up to the Backbeat Titanium 326NP, which still serves me strong to this day, two years later, I think. I can say this is probably one of my best buys for something under $30, despite a shipping error. Their MSRP was $100 at some point; I've forgotten exactly when.


I don't remember with great detail how they sounded out of package, but I believe it was slightly laid back, with a heavier emphasis on the bass. A month and 50 hours of music later, they seem to have opened - they become very aggressive sounding IEMs, easily driven by smartphones. Vocals (male and female) come out strong and clear, with a bit of bleed into the highs. The spectrum does seem to bleed a bit, though not to the point it ruins the IEMs. I will note it only occurs with a bass guitar, oddly enough.


The bass response became clear and on-time, neither too fast nor too slow for my tastes. With the dual flange tips, I think they're probably the best IEMs I have, with great isolation(the sound of cars rushing by at 40-50mph becomes extremely muted), and narrow but still...Accurate soundstage. You can tell when something is far off in the distance, infront, etc. Perhaps not as good as other IEMs, but for something under $40(if available), it's a great little piece. Considering it's been dragged 30 feet on pavement and it still works.

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