Headphones? If so, Phitek Blackbox M14?
Jun 3, 2009 at 1:46 PM Thread Starter Post #1 of 12


Jun 24, 2008
As the title suggests, I have multiple questions...

First, I'm debating between headphones and IEMs. Truthfully, I don't like wearing big bulky headphones, but I find that IEMs offer little to no noise cancellation. Presently, I own a pair of Westone UM1s, and while I love the sound quality, I just can't notice it on a busy/noisy commute. Should I be looking at noise canceling headphones instead? I'm open to all comments/suggestions (keep in mind that I prefer a smaller profile).

Now, if headphones are the proper way to go, has anyone tried the Phitek Blackbox M14? What are some comparable models that I should be looking at? What makes this model particularly attractive is the price. The retail price is $249 CAD, but I can get them for $175 CAD (new) after tax and shipping. When suggesting alternatives, please keep that price-point in mind.

Here are the specs listed on the website (Phitek Blackbox M14):

Noise Cancellation:
Technology - Phitek Systems ANRTM
Active Noise Cancellation - Up to 22dB under 1kHz

Audio frequency response - 20Hz to 22kHz +/-3dB
Driver unit - 40mm dynamic
Magnet type - Neodymium
Speaker impedance - 32 Ohm

Size & Weight:
Dimensions (mm) - 174 x 163 x 80 (HxWxD)
Weight - 180g

Cord and Connectors:
Cord Length - 1.6m detachable
Connector - 3.5mm stereo

- 6.5mm audio adaptor
- 3.5mm dual pin airline adaptor
- Compact carry case
- AAA battery

Thanks for the help/suggestions!
Jun 3, 2009 at 2:01 PM Post #2 of 12
Are you sure you are putting the iems on correctly?
Jun 3, 2009 at 2:20 PM Post #3 of 12

Originally Posted by Ishcabible /img/forum/go_quote.gif
Are you sure you are putting the iems on correctly?


Although I sometimes have trouble securing the left piece (left ear canal is slightly large), I usually get a pretty secure fit. The IEMs eliminate some of the background noise, but it's usually not enough. On a usual commute, I have to navigate through various crowds while also taking the bus and (extremely noisy) subway.

Forgot to mention, I'll probably be using an iPod at 320kps. Musical preference is blues and/or rock.
Jun 3, 2009 at 2:30 PM Post #4 of 12
Well, ime, noise cancelling reduces less noise than iems...
Jun 3, 2009 at 2:33 PM Post #5 of 12

Originally Posted by Ishcabible /img/forum/go_quote.gif
Well, ime, noise cancelling reduces less noise than iems...

Beautiful. This is the common-sense stuff I need to be told.

So, with that in mind, what IEMs would you recommend? Can I expect anything better than the Westone UM1s for about $175 CAD (after tax/shipping)?
Jun 3, 2009 at 2:49 PM Post #6 of 12
Umm, I've heard that the ER6s isolate wonderfully.

There is a chance you won't like their sound though. I think someone sells single driver customs for around $100. I have no idea what the taxes will be though.

Alternatively, you can try this. You can use any iems.
Jul 10, 2009 at 11:08 AM Post #9 of 12
I'm pretty sure that Phitek either make noise cancelling headphones for Goldring, Audio Technica and Creative or use the same OEM.

Form factor of the M14 is very similar to ATH-ANC7. The M10 looks almost identical with Goldring NS1000. I note that frequency responses etc are not the same between these headphones so they perhaps aren't identical. Creative Aurvana X-Fi Noise Cancelling headphones also look very similar but have additional creative tech onboard as well as noise cancelling.
Jul 25, 2009 at 9:27 PM Post #10 of 12
How would the Blackbox M14 compare to the Bose QC3?
Sep 4, 2009 at 6:26 PM Post #11 of 12
Sep 4, 2009 at 8:01 PM Post #12 of 12
I wouldn't take a NC can on a train/bus/subway since you're going to be in crammed quarters and people are going to look at you funny (NC cans often look odd). The QC3's are a decent pick if you can snag em for $100 on Craigslist (Used). They isolate insanely well. QC2's are usually fake.

EDIT: I went ahead and took a peek at the toronto CL and this is the only almost-reasonably priced Bose can. http://toronto.en.craigslist.ca/tor/ele/1352307669.html

You can always haggle

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