Pain like you’ve never felt

Since every current set or Apple earbuds I own now only works in one ear, I went rummaging through my collection of ancient Apple artifacts, and just under the tangerine clamshell iBook I found these, an extremely old pair of iPod ear buds.

I don’t know what model iPod these came with, but it must have been from a time before human ear canals evolved into the shape we are now familiar with. The plus side is, these things were built like a tank (which makes sense as presumably as they were built during the cold war), and BOTH earbuds currently work.

However, as functional as they may be, my bloody ears have put me in the market for new earbuds, preferably with a inline mic. Suggestions?

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Comments
28 Responses to “Pain like you’ve never felt”
  1. Ryan says:

    Ditto on the Zagg Smartbuds.

  2. Ned says:

    I use Sony’s EX-76 in-ear ‘phones, which I love. No inline mic unfortunately. I’d definitely recommend them if you’re looking for in-ears though :)

  3. Blake says:

    i use scosche earbuds, sound pretty good for the price and have mic/controls http://www.scosche.com/consumer-tech/earphones

  4. MacMarine says:

    Doc

    You have provided me (us) so must insight and entertainment over the years. I am so glad to be able to perhaps pay you back a little. Klipsch has several models that cover specific needs. Klipsch is one of the oldest manufactures of speakers (around 60 years). They not only make speakers for home use but for pro use (Studios to theaters to stadiums). Noted for their clean sound and high efficiency and high build quality. They just started in headphones (earbuds) a few years ago. If you want a sturdy product that is audiophile quality check them out.

    http://www.klipsch.com/na-en/products/headphones-earphones/

    Some other brands to consider are Etymotic, Shure, Grado

    http://www.etymotic.com/

    http://www.shure.com/americas/products/earphones-headphones/index.htm

    http://www.gradolabs.com

    If you want me to get longer winded I’ll email you. Headphones are very subjective (comfort, sound, etc.). So do your best to get some hands on with any before you pull the trigger.

  5. Chris H says:

    Check out some of the offerings from Shure http://store.shure.com/ they are on the expensive side but the sound quality is great and the cords are pretty heavy/durable.

  6. Tom says:

    I’ve been using the sony earbuds with the iphone controls. They’re pretty good. They only cost forty bucks or so, therefore not a bad deal. I’ve been wanting to try Apple’s in-ear headphones, though.

  7. sid says:

    Mod your busted ones!
    I took an old pair of sure E2C buds that had a torn cord, and attached them to the cord of my iPhone 4 buds.
    The buds are really easy to take apart. the wire is connected by a tiny amount of solder and held in with a knot. Note that the knot is necessary to keep the white sleeve from falling off and exposing the wires, but you can untie it so you can slip it out of the buds.
    I have to say that my new franken-buds are the most satisfying ones I’ve ever used.

  8. MfS says:

    I second the Scosche earbuds. They’re inexpensive, have terrific range, solid low end (without being muddy), and the mic sounds BETTER than any headset I’ve ever used (according to the people I talk to on the phone). The clicker is terrific as well.

  9. Chase says:

    Bose makes a set that I absolutely love, and generally I *hate* earbuds as they don’t stay in my ears. These do, and they sound amazing.

  10. stephan says:

    I’m a big fan of the Bose MIE2i earbuds – great sound, great fit, worth the money

  11. john boy says:

    Beyond loving the earbuds included with the iPhone 4, I’m also partial the Shure SE115’s and adding the Music Phone Adapter. The set will cost about $150-$170 but well worth it. They offer “Orange Foam Sleeves” for a certain Dr. with sensitive ears.

    Speaking as a drummer the Shure are great noise canceling buds, I can barely hear an acoustic kit when they are in snug.

  12. Mert PAKSOYLU says:

    Tanks ! No no these are i think from outer space :) My wife washed my apple earphones with my shirt than while she was ironing it she discovered that earphones was washed on 70 Degree celcius with all the other clothes . After 1 hour she gave me the earphones without telling the washing story . And they are still working like day one and its cleaner :)
    Thanks apple for making strog products .

  13. Justin says:

    Apart from the in-ear buds, all of Apples ear buds have been super uncomfortable for me.

    I’ve been a fan of Shure, and I believe they make inline mics for them too.

    If you don’t need an inline mic or earbuds, the P5’s from Bower and Wilkins are the most amazing headphones I’ve ever had the privilege to listening too. And I can say that when they were being powered by an iPod.

  14. GlowingApple says:

    Add my vote to the Shure in-ear headphones.

    They’re sound isolating, and they do a great job of it. I work in a chemistry lab, and they do a great job blocking out the drone of the ventilation system. They are a little on the pricey side, but the sound quality is excellent. They’re also designed to be modular, and they sell an in-line volume control and in-line mic. I use both with my iPhone.

  15. vidiot says:

    My Sennheiser CX400’s are the best… have yet to hear better. Gave up the closed-ear noise reduction airplane phones, and these aren’t even NR… just a good in-ear seal. Model number may have changed slightly these days.

  16. imajoebob says:

    I agree with @vidiot. Sennheisers are wonderful. You can’t beat the specs and the price is surprising. Just remember to break them in for about 20 hours before you make any final judgement. I have the CX300-II and they’re great. They’re also pretty sturdy. I (literally) pulled one of the buds out of the dog’s mouth, and while it has a couple scratches, it works perfectly. If you don’t like isolating models I recommend the Sport 70-series. I had the MX-70s and the bass was phenomenal for an open ear model (the treble was great too). The MM-70 has the in-line microphone. They’re also probably the prime choice of counterfeiters, so be careful who you buy them from. If you email them, Sennheiser will probably recommend both some models and a reseller.

    They may not match the $500 Etymotic stuff, but dollar for dollar you won’t find better consumer earbuds anywhere. If you want to spend 500 bucks (or lots more) they make a professional line used by musicians on stage.

    That old pair of yours was from around the 5.5 classic generation. That’s around the time they got rid of the foam and went with the gray around the speaker.

  17. Court says:

    I vote the zagg smart/aqua buds. The unique “hanging tight” config makes all the difference and sound quality is great.

    I wrote a mini review here:

    http://www.fitcatalyst.com/are-these-the-best-workout-earbuds/

  18. Ed says:

    I really like the Etymotic ER-6i. When one side went out, I unsoldered the “bud” part and soldered them onto the Apple headset, thus restoring sound to both ears as well as giving me the inline mic.

    I used it for three years until one side went out again. Repeat soldering procedure with the iPhone 4 headset, now I have volume control.

  19. what about koss i150?

    w/ lifelong warranty, could be the right one for your needs …

    http://www.koss.com/koss/kossweb.nsf/p?openform&pc^eb^i150

  20. Sam says:

    +1 to Shure earbuds, love my E2’s

    I’ve got a pair of those Apple headphones you’ve got there. Mine came with my 3rd Gen iPod (the one before the click wheel).

  21. Gudjon says:

    I have a pair of Bose MIE2 and I’m very happy with them. Fit comfortably in the ear and sound great.

    http://www.amazon.com/Bose-MIE2-Mobile-Headset/dp/B0047QOSUQ/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1302878028&sr=8-1

  22. Steve says:

    Been having pain with the buds even lately. I’ve switch to Motorola Rokr S305 bluetooth over-the-ear-and-behind-the-neck phones. The ear pain and ringing have gone almost entirely away.

  23. Rick Andrade says:

    Doc…Tangerine Clamshell? I have a graphite one! It has the Max Memory of something like 768 MB… and has a 40 GB SSD hard drive in it…. LOL. I had the CD/DVD-ROM Drive Bezel Fixed…. it really Rocks !!!!

    I love my own clamshell. Sometimes I take it to starbucks or Panera Bread…LOL. People are like…. “That thing surfs the web?” I am like hell yeah…this is the first laptop with wifi!

    :-) Oh, of course it has a Tiger in its tank… i.e. OS X 10.4.11

    Rick

  24. Teegan says:

    Hey, look! Those are the ear buds I use!

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