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Cheap isolation for flying?

post #1 of 12
Thread Starter 

What would you recommend for relatively cheap earphones for the occasional airplane trip?  Isolation and comfort are the most important factors, so long as sound is within reason.  I don't fly that much, so would prefer not paying more than about $50. 

post #2 of 12

I've never heard them, so cannot really attest for their sound quality, but for $60, you can get the Etymotic MC5. I have a pair of Etymotic ER4S, and they're really great for airplanes. Some people find the triple flange tips uncomfortable, but they work great for me and I find them pretty comfortable.

 

http://www.amazon.com/Etymotic-Research-Isolating-In-Ear-Earphones/dp/B003S3RFIQ/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1345160638&sr=8-1&keywords=etymotic

 

I took a 14 hour flight to Hong Kong last December, and I brought a bunch of different IEM's with me to test, and I found the Etymotics to be the best as far as blocking out noise. My Westone 4 with Shure olive tips were surprisingly good also. I personally found this setup to be more comfortable than the Etymotics for long hours though. My customs weren't bad, but didn't block out as much as the earlier two. I also brought along a set of Ultimate Ears TF10, and they were terrible, as were the Sennheiser IE8's, which I would highly recommend AGAINST for flights.  

post #3 of 12
Thread Starter 

I was thinking more of IEMs.  Sorry for not making that clear

post #4 of 12

Also... when you look, look mainly into balanced armature IEM's over dynamic drivers, because the dynamic drivers need some sort of vent, which compromises isolation. 

post #5 of 12
Quote:
Originally Posted by PANGES View Post

I've never heard them, so cannot really attest for their sound quality, but for $60, you can get the Etymotic MC5. I have a pair of Etymotic ER4S, and they're really great for airplanes. Some people find the triple flange tips uncomfortable, but they work great for me and I find them pretty comfortable.

 

http://www.amazon.com/Etymotic-Research-Isolating-In-Ear-Earphones/dp/B003S3RFIQ/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1345160638&sr=8-1&keywords=etymotic

 

I took a 14 hour flight to Hong Kong last December, and I brought a bunch of different IEM's with me to test, and I found the Etymotics to be the best as far as blocking out noise. My Westone 4 with Shure olive tips were surprisingly good also. I personally found this setup to be more comfortable than the Etymotics for long hours though. My customs weren't bad, but didn't block out as much as the earlier two. I also brought along a set of Ultimate Ears TF10, and they were terrible, as were the Sennheiser IE8's, which I would highly recommend AGAINST for flights.  

Just curious which customs are you using? Usually customs should have better isolation than universals. I have ES5 and W4R, and for me, the ES5 isolate better than my W4R with 3-flanges/Shure olive tips...

post #6 of 12
Quote:
Originally Posted by hkppl View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by PANGES View Post

I've never heard them, so cannot really attest for their sound quality, but for $60, you can get the Etymotic MC5. I have a pair of Etymotic ER4S, and they're really great for airplanes. Some people find the triple flange tips uncomfortable, but they work great for me and I find them pretty comfortable.

 

http://www.amazon.com/Etymotic-Research-Isolating-In-Ear-Earphones/dp/B003S3RFIQ/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1345160638&sr=8-1&keywords=etymotic

 

I took a 14 hour flight to Hong Kong last December, and I brought a bunch of different IEM's with me to test, and I found the Etymotics to be the best as far as blocking out noise. My Westone 4 with Shure olive tips were surprisingly good also. I personally found this setup to be more comfortable than the Etymotics for long hours though. My customs weren't bad, but didn't block out as much as the earlier two. I also brought along a set of Ultimate Ears TF10, and they were terrible, as were the Sennheiser IE8's, which I would highly recommend AGAINST for flights.  

Just curious which customs are you using? Usually customs should have better isolation than universals. I have ES5 and W4R, and for me, the ES5 isolate better than my W4R with 3-flanges/Shure olive tips...

 

I had a pair of reshelled UE TF10's, and currently own a pair of UE4 Pro and UE11 Pro. It may have been the first, because My UE4 are much looser than the UE11, which isolate a bit better. I didn't have the UE11's on my trip since I bought them a couple months after I came back, but even so, I would still say the W4 are the same if not slightly better than my UE11 still.

 

Perhaps the ES5's "flex tip" thing has something to do with you having more isolation, or possibly I shove the olives in more than I should. lol. It could be a number of things, but that's how it ended up working out for me. 

post #7 of 12
Quote:
Originally Posted by PANGES View Post

 

I had a pair of reshelled UE TF10's, and currently own a pair of UE4 Pro and UE11 Pro. It may have been the first, because My UE4 are much looser than the UE11, which isolate a bit better. I didn't have the UE11's on my trip since I bought them a couple months after I came back, but even so, I would still say the W4 are the same if not slightly better than my UE11 still.

 

Perhaps the ES5's "flex tip" thing has something to do with you having more isolation, or possibly I shove the olives in more than I should. lol. It could be a number of things, but that's how it ended up working out for me. 

lol i see bigsmile_face.gif

 

Actually I ordered my ES5 with acrylic tip (not the soft one) because I have heard some "horror" stories about the soft tips lol, but still, the ES5 I got has better isolation than my W4R. For me, the level of isolation is ES5 > W4R+3-flanges tips > W4R + Shure olive

 

OP: sorry for hi-jacking your thread smile.gif. And I agree that the Ety series really got reasonable price for their great musical performance and their 3-flanges tips do provide great isolation, as long as you can withstand the uncomfortable the first few times you put it itto your ear canal...


Edited by hkppl - 8/16/12 at 9:11pm
post #8 of 12

Find $30 more and get the Shure SE215's from earphonesolutions with the %15 off they will be around $85 I think? Great isolation, great sound and a little extra bass.
 

post #9 of 12
Thread Starter 

The MC5 may be the best choice.  Everyone seems to like the isolation and build quality, although views on comfort and sound quality vary widely.  I'd imagine the comfort would be about the same as similar sized IEMs with similar tips, but perhaps I'm missing something.

 

I had a rather bad experience with Shure regarding repair a few years ago and don't intend to deal with them again.

post #10 of 12

+1 for Etymotic MC5

Their triple flanges are still offer the best isolation.

post #11 of 12

+2 on the MC5, at your price.  Combined with the deeper insertion of the 3-flange tips, it is the closed body (no vent/port) of all the Ety phones that creates the superior isolation. 

post #12 of 12

Agreed on Shure SE-215 for isolation, not as much as Etymotic, whose deep insertion requirement can be off-putting. Another good but less isolator than the Shure at your fifty dollar figure is at Amazon, the Logitech Ultimate Ears 600.

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