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Worst headphones in the world?

post #1 of 37
Thread Starter 

I've gone through so many crappy headphones in the last few years that I have to think about which ones are the worst. I once got a pair of Phillips O'Neills from a Ross in order to get a sale on a shirt, and to my knowledge those are the only headphones I can remember the name of that made my head hurt (excluding free ones).

 

What about you audiophiles, what do you think the worst headphones in the world are? 

 

Edit: Not the stretch o'neills, which are apparently decent, these ones.


Edited by Cam3ron - 2/23/12 at 11:00pm
post #2 of 37

Not counting dollar store earbuds...


The Solo Beats. I have never heard such muddy sound before, especially at the price they charge for them. I have headphones that I paid less than $50 for that still sound better.

 

By the way, I do believe there is another thread just like this. ;)

post #3 of 37


Oh just a few:

http://www.head-fi.org/t/278169/top-10-worst-headphones

http://www.head-fi.org/t/130195/worst-headphone-ever

http://www.head-fi.org/t/128858/what-are-the-worst-headphones-for-the-money

http://www.head-fi.org/t/400025/worst-headphones-ever

http://www.head-fi.org/t/571839/worst-headphone-you-ever-heard

http://www.head-fi.org/t/273413/worst-headphone-flops

http://www.head-fi.org/t/34067/worst-headphone-experience-ever

http://www.head-fi.org/t/31387/worst-headphones-ever-anyone

http://www.head-fi.org/t/24673/worst-headphones-ever

http://www.head-fi.org/t/518799/worst-headphones-you-ever-heard

http://www.head-fi.org/t/82102/worst-200-headphones

http://www.head-fi.org/t/31012/worst-looking-headphones

http://www.head-fi.org/t/315865/whats-the-worst-headphone-you-ever-bought

http://www.head-fi.org/t/477899/worst-headphones-above-100-300

http://www.head-fi.org/t/55256/worst-price-to-performance-headphone

http://www.head-fi.org/t/120966/what-headphone-is-the-worst-for-the-price

http://www.head-fi.org/t/430418/worst-headphones-youve-ever-heard-low-fi-experiences

http://www.head-fi.org/t/586289/competition-of-the-worst-sounding-headphone-for-its-price-bose-cough-monster-beat-cough

 

The word "worst" now looks and sounds incredibly weird to me...

 

And I'm not listing these as an "in your face" - I figure it's more fun to have all of those to read, than just the few pages you'll get of replies here. 

 

As far as my contribution - the most terrible (I told you, the word just looks weird now!) headphones I've heard that actually exist within "high end headphone-dom" were probably the Ultrasone HFI-2400; they were just muddy and had no mids (everything was dominated by the midbass). They're better than a lot of the mainstream crap, I'm sure, but I haven't tried mainstream headphones in probably a decade (apart from Bose (which I would own if they were comfortable; guilty pleasure, I know), and a few minutes with one of the Beats models). I also didn't care too much for the Sennheiser 280, they're just too brittle and boring. 

Quote:
Originally Posted by prayer86 View Post

By the way, I do believe there is another thread just like this. ;)



 

post #4 of 37

There were a pair of Maxell (yeah the cassette tape company) Over Ear Beyerdynamic clone looking thingers someone passed off to me once. OMG sounded like cardboard. Worst.

post #5 of 37
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by obobskivich View Post


Oh just a few:

http://www.head-fi.org/t/278169/top-10-worst-headphones

http://www.head-fi.org/t/130195/worst-headphone-ever

http://www.head-fi.org/t/128858/what-are-the-worst-headphones-for-the-money

http://www.head-fi.org/t/400025/worst-headphones-ever

http://www.head-fi.org/t/571839/worst-headphone-you-ever-heard

http://www.head-fi.org/t/273413/worst-headphone-flops

http://www.head-fi.org/t/34067/worst-headphone-experience-ever

http://www.head-fi.org/t/31387/worst-headphones-ever-anyone

http://www.head-fi.org/t/24673/worst-headphones-ever

http://www.head-fi.org/t/518799/worst-headphones-you-ever-heard

http://www.head-fi.org/t/82102/worst-200-headphones

http://www.head-fi.org/t/31012/worst-looking-headphones

http://www.head-fi.org/t/315865/whats-the-worst-headphone-you-ever-bought

http://www.head-fi.org/t/477899/worst-headphones-above-100-300

http://www.head-fi.org/t/55256/worst-price-to-performance-headphone

http://www.head-fi.org/t/120966/what-headphone-is-the-worst-for-the-price

http://www.head-fi.org/t/430418/worst-headphones-youve-ever-heard-low-fi-experiences

http://www.head-fi.org/t/586289/competition-of-the-worst-sounding-headphone-for-its-price-bose-cough-monster-beat-cough

 

The word "worst" now looks and sounds incredibly weird to me...

 

And I'm not listing these as an "in your face" - I figure it's more fun to have all of those to read, than just the few pages you'll get of replies here. 

 

As far as my contribution - the most terrible (I told you, the word just looks weird now!) headphones I've heard that actually exist within "high end headphone-dom" were probably the Ultrasone HFI-2400; they were just muddy and had no mids (everything was dominated by the midbass). They're better than a lot of the mainstream crap, I'm sure, but I haven't tried mainstream headphones in probably a decade (apart from Bose (which I would own if they were comfortable; guilty pleasure, I know), and a few minutes with one of the Beats models). I also didn't care too much for the Sennheiser 280, they're just too brittle and boring. 


 


Yeah it looks weird to me too. Note that this thread refers to "the world" and not "ever", extremely different.

 

post #6 of 37

Does the airline earbuds count? tongue.gif

post #7 of 37
Quote:
Originally Posted by jackwess View Post

Does the airline earbuds count? tongue.gif

I'd have to say the ones they give out on sight-seeing buses are worse. Half the time one side doesn't work. The other half have loose jacks.
post #8 of 37

 

 This thread is 'Deja Vu' in a big way.

post #9 of 37


Ah, very good then! beerchug.gif

Quote:
Originally Posted by Cam3ron View Post
Note that this thread refers to "the world" and not "ever", extremely different.

 



 

post #10 of 37

Those iBud earphones. Not because they are the worst sonically but because they give people such a bad impression of what is considered good and bad about audio.

 

Also because they are ungodly uncomfortable with their relatively large earpiece and the way it is crammed into your ear. Also the build quality is terrible and in the past (a long time ago I might add) either the cable or the earpiece itself falls apart after a month or two. Also I see lots of people use them on the train or bus, which means that they must jack up the volume so they can hear the music over the noise, damaging their hearing over time. I mean seriously, sometimes I can hear their music while I have my TF10's in my ear and am listening to some quiet passages of a song. That is the worst part about those iBuds.

 

And yet time after time people keep going back to these earphones because they don't know about the better alternatives. There's going to be a lot more hearing impaired people in the future because of these iBuds, and that's why they are the worst headphones in the world.

post #11 of 37

In terms of most disappointing (not exactly the worst outright), the Klipsch Reference One surprised me in a very bad way. Why would such a great company make a headphone that sounds like Beats Solos?

post #12 of 37

These aren't headphones but.

 

 

The Turtle Beach Z1 headset (it was just boring and had nothing special) but it was built so poorly. It broke as soon as I took it out of the box. Two in a row actually. The second worked for about a day and then the sound stopped coming out of the right speaker.

 

Sound quality was nothing special either. Not worth nearly $30

post #13 of 37
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by ssrock64 View Post

In terms of most disappointing (not exactly the worst outright), the Klipsch Reference One surprised me in a very bad way. Why would such a great company make a headphone that sounds like Beats Solos?



The most disappointing for me are probably the Bose AE2. I loved trying on the noice cancelling bose headphones and thought that getting the sound without the noise cancelling for half the price would be worth it. I was wrong though, and prefer my JVC Gummy's over them.

post #14 of 37

I feel sorry for the other people I see walking around my school with a pair of trash $200 beats around their neck that think they are so cool. When a $40 pair of JVC 700's probably dominates them in every way. Besides the fact the JVC's look goofy.

 

I asked someone if I could listen to their beats. I don't know which model but I know she hadn't had it for long but it was long enough It was probably burned in well. The audio was CRAP. It was no better then my $20 Rosewill headset. It also sounded a lot more muffled like there was a thin wall between my ear and the speakers.


Edited by Supertoaster - 2/24/12 at 6:14pm
post #15 of 37


This is a really good point. I've had my hearing protectors in (I carry Etyplugs on my keys, I have a weird knack for finding really loud events and I figured it was worth keeping them with me) and can still hear the bleed out from iBuds or whatever other inexpensive on-ear/in-ear nonsense that people have cranked way up. I just can't imagine the headaches and the pain associated with it, then again, I think (but am not going to test it out) as your hearing goes away, you have to make this louder and louder to still be able to hear at the same level?

Quote:
Originally Posted by ProjectDenz View Post

Those iBud earphones. Not because they are the worst sonically but because they give people such a bad impression of what is considered good and bad about audio.

 

Also because they are ungodly uncomfortable with their relatively large earpiece and the way it is crammed into your ear. Also the build quality is terrible and in the past (a long time ago I might add) either the cable or the earpiece itself falls apart after a month or two. Also I see lots of people use them on the train or bus, which means that they must jack up the volume so they can hear the music over the noise, damaging their hearing over time. I mean seriously, sometimes I can hear their music while I have my TF10's in my ear and am listening to some quiet passages of a song. That is the worst part about those iBuds.

 

And yet time after time people keep going back to these earphones because they don't know about the better alternatives. There's going to be a lot more hearing impaired people in the future because of these iBuds, and that's why they are the worst headphones in the world.



 

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