Etymotic MC5

General Information

The Etymotic mc5 are a new line of colourful headphones that have a few features that make it rather unique. With a stylish look, the earbuds produce high-quality sound as they use passive-noise isolation that's similar to other noise-isolation headphones. Along with being very comfortable as owners can choose from different earbud tips, the product is available in black, blue, green and red.

Latest reviews

Pros: Complete noise isolation
Even, crystal clear sound
Durable cable
Very useful accessories
Cons: J shaped plug
Tri-flange tips can get uncomfortable after a while
Only come with 1 pair of foam ear tips
I’ve had the Etymotic MC5 for over a year and a half and thoroughly enjoy them. They have excellent noise isolation; especially when using the foam tips. The sound comes out very crystal clear without distortion. The cable has held up to much wear and tear throughout my time owning this iem. My main complaints are that the jack is not right angled; but rather J shaped making it easier to damage the headphone jack. Also, if you wear it for very long periods of time with the tri-flange tips you will feel some irritation. Said irritation is non existent in the foam tips. When I purchased my MC5, there wasn’t an option for in-line controls. Nowadays they do give you the option of in-line controls or not.
I’m really impressed with the accessories that come with the MC5. You get 3 sizes of tri flange tips, basic tips and one pair of foam tips. Also, you get a filter kit to clean out your IEM, ie a tiny filter and a small steel rod to retrieve and insert said filters. You also get a shirt clip; however I myself don’t care for shirt clips as they’re more of a burden than a help in my personal experience.
If you’ve never bought a pair of Etymotic in ear headphones before, this would be a great introduction to the brand; especially if you want absolute noise isolation. As soon as you put the MC5 in your ears fully; you will not hear any outside noises even when no audio is being played. When wearing these, be very aware of your surroundings as you will be deaf to the world when these headphones are properly inserted in your ears; especially when using the foam tips. The foam tips seemed to have even more noise isolation than the tri-flange tips.
     Considering that the MC5 is your first Etymotic buy, why don't you take a look at the ER4 variats (P, PT, S, etc.)? They have been considered a legend of sorts because of their popularity as being one of the flattest earphones you can get at that price. 
     Great review, btw, and one that really constitutes a review -- it's your opinion, nothing more, nothing less, and that's what makes it great. Thank you!
Pros: Neutral, Analytical, Isolation, Build quality
Cons: Comfort
I've purchased my MC5's from Ebay around a year ago (If I remember correctly.)
Since then I've kept them as a backup IEM whenever my main IEM would break on me.
The build quality on these are just fantastic, I've tried recabling one before but I broke one of the drivers on it because my soldering iron was too hot.
But yeah, the build quality is really good, the cable is of average thickness however it is strong.
The metal housings are quite strong aswell, the thickness of the housing is big (1mm if I remember correctly)
The plastic on the housing is decent, however on my pair a very small piece of the plastic on the corner where it connects to the metal broke off.
But it doesn't seem like an issue to me. The strain reliefs are flexible but very strong, especially where the cable connects to the earpiece.
Sonically I found the MC5's very neutral and boring at first but after listening for longer periods with them you'll start noticing how much detail these IEMs produce.
The bass is obviously not huge in quanitity but the quality however is good. Its quite tight, and extends well.
Mids are detailed aswell, I found vocals lifeless at first but after a while I really started to enjoy vocals, the detail just makes it alot more immersive in my opinion.
Highs sound good, its detailed but its not sparkly. It also doesn't extend very far and they can be quite sibilant with poor recordings.
Soundstage is average, its not very wide but depth is quite good. Compared to the Vsonic GR06 soundstage depth seems a bit better with the MC5's
Comfort is okay with these, atleast for me. I can insert them quite deep into my ears since I have deep ear canals. But poeple who have narrow ears might hate the MC5's, yes there are foam tips included with them but they feel very rough, as if they're sandpaper. But yeah, comfort hugely depends on your ears.
Isolation is what I love with these IEMs, I can't hear poeple talking around me. I can barely hear a TV playing at around %50 volume from 4-5 meters away. I wouldn't recommend using these while cycling or doing anything that requires you to hear the area around you. I would recommend them for poeple that travel with a bus or a train.
Overall, I really recommend the MC5's for poeple who are looking for an analytical and neutral IEM that isolates really well. I'm now a fan of Etymotic, especially because of the build quality. Can't wait to buy the ER-4S.
Update: Also, it matters how deep it is inserted. I just decided to try out short single flange tips on my MC5's and now the soundstage is a bit wider and theres also a bit more bass. Highs extend further when using short tips with a big barrel.
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