Why are the phones included such a crap?
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Langrath

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On recommendations from this forum I bought Sennheiser mx500 as an in-ear non-canal phone. I am pleased with them. I think they are as good as these kinds of earphones can be.
What I don’t understand is that they can’t deliver better in-ear phones with all those portables that have such a phone included. If Sennheiser can make such a good earphone for $20 why can’t I get an equal good earphone if I buy a minidisk for say $200?
Instead I get crap that sounds ****. Many people don’t understand that it is the phone that makes the sound bad. It would be a selling investment to give a better phone included, especially as Seenheiser has proved that they don't have to be expensive.
Am I the only one that is confused?

Georg
 
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metal_monger

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Its the way buisness works, if a set of senn earbuds cost you 20 bucks...it prolly would cost say Apple half of that or less.

Now lets say ipods included these senn earbuds, ipods have sold in the millions, lets say for the sake of argument they have sold 10 million total ipods. Nultiply those 10 dollars for earbuds times the 10million ipods that have been sold, and that amount is what apple has lost in providing you the superior earbuds.

Now keep in mind audiophiles and informed customers are not the majority, most people think the "ipod sounds great" they dont break it down to the component level.
 
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Rempert

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From the audiophile standpoint (not that I would know anything about being an audiophile
) it's better the way it is now. The company can sell the source to you for less since the headphones are cheaper, and you are going to pick and choose your preferred headphones anyway. Ideally, the unit wouldn't come with any phones at all, but that is clearly not good marketing.

From a business/consumer standpoint, it's an interesting question. You could upgrade the apparent sound quality of the source you are selling people quite a bit at a pretty marginal increase in cost. But for that to have a positive impact on sales, people would have to A) find out about the difference in sound quality and B) either not realize that the difference is a result of the earbuds rather than the player itself, or not extend that realization to the next step that they could take a cheaper unit and buy even better headphones.
 
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In the same line of thought, think about why marantz has a CD17, CD17MkII, CD17MkIII CD17KI....
 
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gpalmer

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Quote:

Originally Posted by Rempert
From the audiophile standpoint (not that I would know anything about being an audiophile
) it's better the way it is now. The company can sell the source to you for less since the headphones are cheaper, and you are going to pick and choose your preferred headphones anyway. Ideally, the unit wouldn't come with any phones at all, but that is clearly not good marketing.

From a business/consumer standpoint, it's an interesting question. You could upgrade the apparent sound quality of the source you are selling people quite a bit at a pretty marginal increase in cost. But for that to have a positive impact on sales, people would have to A) find out about the difference in sound quality and B) either not realize that the difference is a result of the earbuds rather than the player itself, or not extend that realization to the next step that they could take a cheaper unit and buy even better headphones.



I think Rempert pretty well sums it up. This is a general trend in today's audio merchandise. Mass market products are not selected based on sound comparisons rather they are picked based on features on the outisde of the box and price. A crappy headphone fills in a line on the features list just as well as a high quality one would so the money saved can either be taken as profit or used to cut prices and compete more effectively against other manufacturers.

EDIT - Speeling!
 
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peekarwe

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Quote:

Originally Posted by gpalmer
Mass market products are not selected based on sound comparisons rather they are picked based on features on the outisde of the box and price.


Including the specifications. The philips HP1000 (one up from HP890) has frequency response of 5hz to 40,000hz. What does that translate into? Better sound than the DT931s?
 
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gpalmer

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Quote:

Originally Posted by peekarwe
Including the specifications. The philips HP1000 (one up from HP890) has frequency response of 5hz to 40,000hz. What does that translate into? Better sound than the DT931s?


Have you seen the frequency specifications for the bundled headphones included on the side of a retail box? I just checked my NJB3 box and they're not on there. Not that frequency response necessarily correlates to sound quality, but this thread and my comments in it is directed at bundled headphones in particular.
 
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peekarwe

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I rarely see them for bundled earphones. Might have, but can't pinpoint a specific case. In case this rubs up the way with you, I apologise.
 
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Kevin143

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The Rio Karma comes with Sennheiser MX300s, which are certainly an order of magnitude above most other bundled headphones. Although it doesn't seem explicitly marketed that way, Sonicblue seems to be targeting people who care about sound quality with the included MX300s as well as OGG and FLAC support.
 
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gpalmer

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Quote:

Originally Posted by peekarwe
I rarely see them for bundled earphones. Might have, but can't pinpoint a specific case. In case this rubs up the way with you, I apologise.



Not in the least, I didn't mean to give you that impression!
In the example you mentioned where headphones were the main product, I could see the specs for them being there because that is the main product included, which to me would more closely parallel the iPod or music player itself. OTOH, as long as the headphones look good when the consumer is buying them I don't think most companies care.

That's very interesting about the Karma. I'm not sure it would really motivate me since I like my Etymotic ER-4s, but it's nice to see one manufacturer differentiating themselves by quality of sound. LOL, how unexpected in an audio component!
 
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