For the past 4-5 years, I've been wearing Sony MDR E10's, which I really liked. Clearer than any other earphone I've listened to (which is to say they beat the complimentary airline phones and Apple ones) and durable enough to last 1-2 years of abuse. Most importantly, they cost ~$10, so every time I'd break a pair I'd just buy another one.
However, I finally want to up the ante and spend a little bit more to hopefully get a better earphone. Here are the criteria:
- Earbud, not canalphone, IEM, etc. If it's got a silicone/foam tip, I don't want it.
- $20-$30. I don't want to spend a ton because the fact is I'm probably going to break them eventually. I keep my earbuds loose in my pocket so they get smashed, I drop them sometimes, I run with them so they may get sweaty, etc. Willing to go bit higher ($45?) if I like a more expensive pair and just get another pair of E10's for running (I'm guessing the sweat is what does the most damage) but they'll still get tossed around in my pocket a lot.
- Preferably no volume control. I don't need it and it's more bulk. L shaped plug is also a minor plus, but not important.
- Easily available (in the US), preferably online from a reputable site. This is the hard part - I've done a bit of research on head-fi and other sites, read similar threads and guides - but many of them are a few years old and the headphones they reviewed are hard to find/prices have gone up.
For example, two of the most commonly suggested earphones I saw were the Sennheiser MX580 and the Yuin PK3, but when I searched for them online I found them on ebay for ~$50 and $36 respectively, which seems to be more than what they used to cost. I'd still spring for the PK3's if I couldn't find anything better, but I'd rather not wait a month for them to ship from China.
I'm also looking at the Sennheiser MX365 for $17 off amazon. The amazon reviews are good but I haven't see much from head-fi on them.