MDR-EX71SL/81LP VS. A44L/A35G for walking
Mar 10, 2006 at 9:29 PM Thread Starter Post #1 of 10

nick81

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ive been searching all over the net for quite a long time. i found this forum. so that i can get some experienced opinions.

ive used the a35g and a34l's before. now i am getting interested in the 71sl or 81lp earbuds from sony. i have read tons of positive as well negative reviews. some say the bass is too weak and some say the bass is strong. some say they are comfortable and some say they are terrible.

is there anyone who has used the verticles and the earbuds who can give an opinion. i want to know if any of those in-ear earbuds are better than the a44ls?

thanks,
nick
 
Mar 10, 2006 at 10:15 PM Post #2 of 10

LaBreaHead

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I have the Sony 71's (among others, including more-isolating Shure and Etymotic IEMs), and when taking music along on a walk, I've used the Sony's most often. They still isolate somewhat, though, so be careful with traffic, etc.

In my opinion, the Sony's are the most comfortable, easiest to wear/use. Not great audiophile sound, but a "fun" bassy sound that may or may not impress you coming out of such small earphones on the go. Many, many people find them too bassy; curiously, I've also read many opinions claiming they were too shrill or screechy. Also, some people have had problems with the coating on the cords; I haven't ... check these forums for opinions and comments (and treat any earphones/headphones carefully -- protect against crushing, abrasion, etc.).

People on these forums say the new Creatives and Sennheisers are better -- I haven't tried those (yet). But I like the Sony's, for what they are -- a fun, affordable improvement on stock earbuds. (The 51's cost less and are basically the same, except for the cord: one long cord for the 51's, and a very short cord for the 71's, with a long extension .. check around for descriptions of the "neck chain" cords. I like that the 51's and 71's can be manipulated within the ear, to find a fit that gives the best sound; I would imagine that the 81's are less maneuverable, due to the ear clips.)
 
Mar 13, 2006 at 4:39 AM Post #4 of 10

LaBreaHead

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"i want to know if any of those in-ear earbuds are better than the a44ls"

I had not heard a thing about them, one way or the other. (I had to look them up to see what you were referring to. I realize now that I've seen them, but haven't heard any opinions.) I have no idea how these are considered -- by individuals, or by Head-Fi posters collectively. So, I can't say ...
 
Mar 13, 2006 at 5:15 AM Post #5 of 10

nsjong

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I have to say, they have less bass, but more of the highs and mids.

But rather getting the EX71 or the EX81, just go for the Creative EP630. Cheaper and sound at least 10 times better. Not to mention MUCH more durable.
 
Mar 13, 2006 at 5:33 AM Post #6 of 10

threepointone

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the ex71s definitely have bass.
I've had the a44s before (or at least some headphones that look a lot like the a44s--sony has some crazy naming schemes), and even before i got my sennheiser 280s (before my entry into the audiophile world), they were my absolute least favorite headphones. They had virtually no bass at all compared to the ex71s which I would say now actually have too much bass.

I haven't ever tried the phillips before, but from what I've read around here, I'd say they're a good bet.
 
Mar 13, 2006 at 5:47 AM Post #7 of 10

hekoman

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I have a pair of A44's. I find them to be aobve average for the price you can usaully find them for. They are not near as good as the KSC-75's but I don't know of muvh that is until you get much more expensive. I am sorry, I have never heard the EX71/81's though, so I will just compare them to what I have, the UM1's. I find that the A44's are about on par with my UM1's, though the UM1's obviously have isolation where as the A44's have next to no isolation. They still isolate better then my KSC-75's and my MS2i's. I think I would refer to them as semi-open. Since I find them about on par with my UM1's I would assume that they do sound better than the EX71/81's, though i am sure they have much less bass, but I bet the A44's stomp the EX71/81 im the details. I have found that the A44's are relitivly detailed cans. The main problem with the A44's it can be a tad tricky to get it to sound good though.

The main problem with side firing headphones (such as the A44's) is that it really depends on the persons ear and positioning of the drivers in the ear as to what sound you will get. Right when i put on the headhones, they usauly sound very bright (like most crappy earbuds). If I push the headband just a tad back on my head the drivers make a better seal with the front of my ear, so the bass increases and the highs start to get muddled. If I push the handband towards the front of my head the bass get very recessed and the headhones turn extremly bright. Also as I push the drivers further into my ear the bass will increase. The key I have found is adjusting it till I am happy with the sounds, and I can also adjust the sounds for different music types.

This is not to say that they are that great a pair of cans though. The mids and highs are always a little muddled and there is almost no bass impact to speak of. Maybe I am just spoiled by my MS2i's though.

Also from what I have heard about the EX71/81's durability, or lack thereof, that the A44's would last you much longer. My pair of A44's have lasted my about 7 months now and they still look brand new, although I do not use them everyday. I thikn that just for walking around you would enjoy the EX71/81 more due to their more bass heavy nature and more "fun" quality to the sounds. And I am sure that you ears would thank you for the added isolation so you would not have to turn up the volume as much to drown out external noises.
 
Mar 13, 2006 at 6:03 AM Post #8 of 10

CoppellStereo1

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I have the Sony EX-81, and they are comfortable, and sound well. They sound even better with a small amp. I use them while biking mainly, there is some wind noise, but not as bad as some. but as someone mentioned, I am having problems with my cord casing, any suggestions? ive tried electical tape, but no luck
 
Mar 13, 2006 at 5:56 PM Post #9 of 10

nick81

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thanks guys. ive got a good perspective on the headphones. now im going to have to choose from the creative, koss, sonys that you mentioned. little bit more complicated now. but alteast i figured out that the a44l's are not so good with bass, which is my main interest in the headphones.
 

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