The AT ANC7 is certainly one of the better noise-cancelling cans available. While most noise cancelling cans sound funny - like something is sucked out from the mids/highs, or imbalanced - too much bass, treble relative to the rest of the spectrum, the ANC7 does not have this problem with the noise-cancellation activated. Somehow the AT designers got the cancellation correct - ie firing external noise in reverse phase while not affecting the signal from the source. While it may not be the most reveiling, it certainly sounds musical.
I use my Westone UM-1 for flights and for my daily train commute. I've tried a variety of tips - Comply, yellow foamies, tri-flange and diy from some Flents plugs. They all work well - especially when new, but I do find the tri-flanges the least comfortable. Much better isolation than my old Aiwa NC 'phones. I just got some black Shure tips, I'm going to try those on my next flight.
I'll put in a plug for the SE530's. Had mine for a couple of weeks now along with two flights and the medium olive foamies are working great for me. Maybe I'm used to them now and/or break in time but the sound is amazing and isolation very good. They really knock the noise floor down to where the music comes through cleanly and I'm not running them very loud straight out of an iPod. I don't know if they're as comfy as livewires but even after 3-4 hours I'm OK. I didn't go for the PTH module and glad I skipped it. The last thing I want to hear is the pilot/flight attendant running their yaps and making excuses for being late as usual. I've listened to a pair of Bose QC2's - Chevy Aveo vs. SL500 or something roughly close to that. QC3's go for $300 - I got the SE530's for $50 more and they're ridiculously easy to travel with. The clamshell case is 100 times better than the one I had with the E2's.
Originally Posted by volsfan0911 /img/forum/go_quote.gif I'll put in a plug for the SE530's. Had mine for a couple of weeks now along with two flights and the medium olive foamies are working great for me.
I have the PXC-300s and found them a little uncomfortable and they don't cut out the noise as well as the SE530s. I used the Etys 4Ps previously and I find their tips (plastic and foam) not as comfortable, and the cable is too microphonic.
I thought I was the only crazy one using two sets of headphone on the airplane. Aparently this is not the case.
For those of you having a good IEM already, and do not wish to pay up too much like the Bose QC, you can buy a cheat, but rather comfortable and portable Maxell NC phone. I bought mine at Walmart for thirtysome bucks. The only drawback, comparing with the Bose option, is you have to deal with the extra cable. But this is not too bad if you don't move around. Also you might have to guess at what the flight attendance is talking to you.
Well, if its active canceling you are after then go for QC2. If you have got no problem in inserting IEMs then you have got quite a range to spend for the same price as Bose's. If you are after SQ as well then try some Shure SE530s or Ultimate Triple Fis. They both are awesome when it comes to sound quality and isolation, but Shure's have got the upper hand in isolation with olive foamies.
Any good IEM will work. If you don't want to spend alot, you can always sub the Altec-Lansing IM616s or 716s for the ER4Ps, or my favorite IEMs, the Atrio M5s, which do not require an amp and are very non-fatiguing for long flights. You can read about the Atrios on this forum. Not as detailed as the ER4Ps, which I owned and sold, but have deep, clean bass, and good enough mids/highs. Again, the non-fatiguing aspect is good for traveling as well.
ER4S. They have flat bass. Either you didn't have a seal, they were defective or needed the filters changed (usually only affects highs, though), your amp/source wasn't matched right to it, or you have low-freq hearing damage. If you're a basshead, that last one is a definite possibility...in which case you're stuck with bass heavy speakers/cans forever now.