Low-end earbuds
Feb 8, 2008 at 12:43 AM Thread Starter Post #1 of 28


New Head-Fier
Dec 25, 2006
I'm looking to buy some earbuds, here are the parameters I'd prefer:

- Durability... I have a tendency to be rough on my portable 'phones, I've already destroyed some Marshmallows and EP-630s, so something more durable would be nice.

- Sound quality... I listen to mostly classical music, so the two buds I mentioned previously were a little too bass-focused for me, though still generally adequate. I really just want something decent-sounding for classical.

- Comfort... I'm usually okay with most designs, even if they're a bit uncomfortable I get used to them. The main thing here is that I like to fall asleep listening to music. If possible, I'd like something that doesn't become super-uncomfortable when squashed between head and pillow.

- Price... Like I said, I'm not looking for high-end stuff here, there's too much risk if I buy something very expensive, particularly if it isn't durable. I'd like to set a tentative budget at $40, and lower is, of course, always better. I might be able to stretch that if there really isn't anything available.

Well I think that covers what I'm looking for, so what are my options?
Feb 8, 2008 at 1:36 AM Post #3 of 28
Ahh, sorry, I forgot to mention one thing: I'd like the earbuds to have at least some seal since I'll be using these on the bus and stuff. I might be completely wrong since I'm not familiar with the PK3s, but those are normal, non-sealing buds, no? Maybe I used the wrong word, "earbud", should I say canalphones or IEMs... pah.

Thanks for the recommendation though
Feb 8, 2008 at 1:39 AM Post #4 of 28
I'd recommend checking out the D33 isolating earbuds at ifrogz.com.

Regular price is $19.95, but they put them on sale at half off quite frequently. I picked up a pair about two weeks ago when they had them for ten bucks and I gotta say I really like them.

They may be too bass-heavy for some tastes, but I find that if I purposely don't give them a solid seal they sound very good. Surprisingly good in fact, especially after about 24 hours of burn-in. Cord noise is less than my Sennheiser CX300's. I use them as my work earbuds all the time, because I tend to be pretty rough on earbuds also.

They're J-corded, but I actually prefer that also because I move a lot of boxes and often work with shrinkwrap and I find they stay out of my way better.

Stravinsky's Rite of Spring sounds great on them, BTW....

The build seems pretty solid also, but hey, for ten bucks, if they self-destruct, no biggie.

Next time they go on sale I think I'm going to order 2-3 more pairs just as backups.

Feb 8, 2008 at 1:43 AM Post #5 of 28
Feb 9, 2008 at 3:29 PM Post #7 of 28
I'll take a look at the D-33s...

I had the Marshmallows before and they were okay, just not so durable. Also not the greatest for classical music.

The Klipsch ones are too expensive for me
Feb 10, 2008 at 5:55 PM Post #10 of 28
They appear to be the same thing as the A4tech earphones talked about in another thread.

But for $4 shipped how can you lose?
Feb 10, 2008 at 6:11 PM Post #11 of 28
sony ex51 or ex71 is ultra comfortable, i never had anything better than those in that department

but its sound has some bloated bass, and not clear i guess definitely not good for classics.
Feb 11, 2008 at 8:58 PM Post #12 of 28
If you're looking for cheap durability it's hard to kill Skullcandy ink'd and smokin' buds. As for sound you'd have to decide yourself if they are good enough - they are ok for what they cost imo.
Feb 11, 2008 at 9:46 PM Post #13 of 28
ink'd smokin buds are really good if you can find them for ~$10, it's the best skullcandy 'phone i've heard, IMO.
Feb 11, 2008 at 10:09 PM Post #14 of 28
I have a set of creative earbuds that came with my Vision M that I use for sleeping. They are kind of large but fit me decently and don't fall out even with turning over. I find the sound quality very good even though many here automaticly dismiss packaged earbuds. You might want to post a want to buy listing for these you might get them for the cost of shipping from someone. I had an extra set that I gave to a headfier that traded his EP630 for my CX300 straight up. I couldn't find a model number or any info on the creative website. If isolation is not needed you might want to check out the Koss K75 clip ons currently on sale at Radio Shack....I have not heard them but they are a huge favorite hear for a budget can....currently only $15
Feb 11, 2008 at 10:39 PM Post #15 of 28
I just bought my friend the KSC75s, but I'd like to have sealing buds.

Given that I'm looking for a seal and as cheap a price as possible, I think I'm narrowed down to these choices:

Mysterious DealExtreme earbuds for $3.90 shipped:
DealExtreme: $3.90 In-Ear Stereo Earbuds (3.5mm Metallic Orange)

Skullcandy Ink'd Smokin' Buds for $12.99 + tax with in-store pickup:
Buy the Skullcandy Ink'd Smokin' Bud Earbud Headphones - Blue and other Headphones at circuitcity.com

iFrogz Earpollution D-33: Only an option if I can really find them for $20 or less

What do you think?

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