I want to buy the E888. I think I'll buy them the next time I go to Japan. I know a headphone shop in Tokyo that has a very good selection of new and second hand headphones. Then I can compare.
I have only listened to the MX980 for a few minutes in the headphone store in Tokyo. I want to buy the MX980, but I think it's too expensive right now. I hope the price will drop. If it is an old and rare vintage earbud, I have no problems paying $200 or more if it's working well. It's a collectors item and I don't know when I'll come across one again. If it's a modern earbud and it will not be discontinued soon, I am not prepared to spend as much.
I don't think that the older earbuds beat the MX980. But I don't think the MX980 walks all over them. Some people prefer the Yuin PK1 or the Blox TM5, some prefer the MX980. The PK1 is described as having a more laid back tube amp like sound while the MX980 is more forward. It depends on your preferences. I don't think there's a perfect earbud. But I think there are earbuds that can be very good at either creating a good sound, be it bassy or airy or full of treble, or they can create a relatively neutral sound.
Edited by Danneq - 1/20/12 at 2:47pm