Hi I'm new here, and probably considered a neophyte at Head-Fi -
however I have long favored listening on headphones - that is back to the days when they were those big clunky things that covered ones ears.
Eventually I purchased a pair of the now legendary Sony MDR-V6 - after reading Consumer Reports sometime around the mid '80s, just after they first came out. They may be a bit too bright for my current tastes, but still sound really good, with good but not intrusive extended bass - and those had been my benchmark since.
I flirted with various earbuds because I like the compact carrying size and by taking advantage of the ear cavity - those tiny speakers can manage to produce such good bass, mids and highs weren't much of a problem - but obviously there were plenty that were pretty brittle and harsh, especially at the low price end.
However I found the Philips HE591 which became the SHE5910 - and I really liked them - seemed for the low price pretty well balanced with good bass extension - I thought I may have preferred them over my Sony MDR-V6.
Then I found Head-Fi.org and am extremely grateful for ljokerl Multi-IEM Review.
So I tried those highly recommended bottom priced IEMs -
first the Brainwavz Beta - they were everything the review said they were and I could tell they were better than the Philips SHE5910 that I had been using (but not by much for my ears).
Just when I was getting used to the Brainwavz Beta - everyone started talking about the Monoprice 8320 - what at $7-8? WoW! I just had to try those - in fact bought two pairs just because it worked out cheaper that way (at just over $8 each shipped) - and yes, another incremental improvement - although they were even more sensitive to microphonics - but wearing over-ear helped mitigate that - they weren't bad - but less comfortable. But hey! great sound quality for $8?
So I had to try a pair, found some for $6 shipped....
Boy! am I impressed (no EQ) - the bass extension/sub-bass is unbelievable at almost any price, much less for a $6 pair of IEMs.
The Philips SHE3580 actually revealed that the test track I had been using to compare headphones did not have much sub-bass! "The Lazarus Heart" by Sting from "Nothing Like the Sun" CD.
I found fairly quickly a great live recording downloadable (free & legal) from Archive.org that had plenty of bass extension - Robert Walter's 20th Congress Live at The Boom Boom Room on 2007-10-11 - tracks are available in Flac as well as vbr2 mp3. If you don't want to wade through all the tracks try this short one: Almendra (4:53) - 30.9 MB (Flac) or 7.2 MB (vbr2 mp3) - the bass by Chris Stillwell along with Eric Kalb's bass drum are great, with easy extension into sub-bass.
I was so impressed I bought another 2 pairs just for back-up -
yeah, I know.... big spender!
Thank you to Joe Bloggs for his thread - and also to Dsnuts Discovery Thread - for making me aware of these Philips SHE3580
I did not expect much out of this headphone and bought just because I can. If nothing else, I thought, I can use this as a disposable headphone on one of my trips and not worry about losing them. But, I could not be more wrong.
This pair has become my daily driver. The 3580 has bass and sub-bass that can compete with $100 headphones. And it is not muddy in the slightest. This is pure, clean and not overpowering bass that sometimes my ATH-M50 does with some songs. The highs are crisp and clear.
Plugged in with my FiiO E7 and sansa clip+ I just got lost for two hours in my own world last night all the while wondering how can these be so good at this price! While I mostly had trance and bass heavy songs on my playlist, Led Zepp's 'Stairway to Heaven" sprung up on shuffle. I certainly missed some lows at the start of the song, but the clarity of the guitar riffs got my ears pointed.
Noise isolation is not great at all, but good enough for me. I don't like to be totally cut off from the world while walking. There was a lot of static noise through the cable that disturbed the music. So now, I make sure there is no loose cable and shove the extra length into my pocket ( it's only 3.9 ft long).
All in all, these are killer IEMs that everyone should try out! I mean everyone...just buy them and give these out as charity so that people can appreciate good music.