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Etymotic - Shure - Sony? HELP!! Really Confused

Discussion in 'Headphones, Earphones & Portable Music' started by Suave, Jan 19, 2005.

  1. Suave

    Suave
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    Hello all,

    I want to buy a set of in canal earphones. I was just going to buy the Sony MDR-EX71SL as they are cheap but have read that they sound pretty harsh.

    I have been looking at models from Shure & Etymotic and was looking for some input as to which are the best value for money. The Shure E2c, Shure E3c or the Etymotic ER6 or ER6i. I have read good things about all of these models but really do not want to spend more than I have to. I orginally thought £25, then it went up to £50 etc! I know that Shure are bringing out an E4c but I guess that will be out of my budget as is the other Etymotic models. I just dont know what to do and which gives best sound and value. I understand Sony have just launched the MDR-EX81SL which replaces the 71Sl and is supposed to have dealt with all the problems that the 71SL had. They look pretty cool and are only $55! All you Shure, Etymotic & Sony fans -Please help me out!

    Thank You!
    Suave!
     
  2. alexs2

    alexs2
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    The Shures and Etymotics are not cheap,and rival a lot of upmarket conventional 'phones in terms of price,but can also compete on quality grounds too.
    Personally,I have no experience of the Shures,but others here will add their views on that score.....as far as the Etymotics go,for isolation,and for sound quality,they really are very good,but will require a bit of adjustment time,for you to get used to having a set of ear-canal phones.....you also have to ensure the seal between the phones and your ear is secure,or all the bass and sound isolation is lost,although that is true of all ear-canal phones to some degree.
     
  3. davet010

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    Shure e2c's are excellent...best personal stereo headphones I've had. As with Alexs' post, you need to fit the right size buds on (you get three different sets with the Shures), but once in, you will notice the difference
     
  4. Zigster

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    I just bought a pair of Shure e2c's yesterday to replace my original iPod 'phones which were crackling in the left ear.

    I did try the Apple in-ear 'phones but I absolutely hated the sound - I think I may not have had them fitted correctly as it sounded like someone had turned up the treble and turned down the bass. They also seemed awkward to insert.

    The Shure's seem much easier to fit. I had to swap the buds to the smallest size but that was a 30 second job. I tried both them and my original iPod ones (avec crackle) on the train to work this morning and the difference was startling. It may be largely to do with the sound isolation with the Shures (I made the mistake of not turning down the volume when swapping headphones :blush: which hurt a little) but I thought the Shure's were wonderful. I listened a variety of songs: Jeff Buckley "Hallelujah", New Order "Substance", ... and they all sounded wonderful compared to my old 'phones.

    I can't imagine how good the e3c's are (the e5c's are an absolutely ridiculous price), although I would guess the bulk of the improved sound can be had by the e2c's.

    The downside: getting them in the UK! They were £70 from the Apple shop, although I think you can get them cheaper on eBay - I chose not to in case I wanted to return them. I think the wife has assumed they are quite cheap as they are small in-ear jobs.
     
  5. doctorjuggles

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    I've heard all three pairs, and I own the 'ridiculous' E5s. In my opinion, the E2s are the best price/performance cans, expecially for a newcomer. The E3s are good phones, but they don't really give you the same jump as the E2s give you over normal phones, or the same jump as the E5s give you over the E3s. What I mean by that is, if you own rubbish earphones and then use the E2s, you'll more than likely go 'wow, that's good.'
    And if you own the E3s and then get the E5s, again you'll go 'wow, what a difference.'
    But if you owned the E2s and upgraded to the E3s, you'd probably be a little bit less enthusiastic about the jump in quality. It's a better set of cans, but probably not enough to make all that much difference, especially to someone new to the audiophile world.

    I can't really comment on the Etymotics though, sorry.

    If you want to see a review I wrote about the E3 vs E5 (with a few references to the EX71) let me know and I'll give you the link.
     
  6. Zigster

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    Lucky man!

    I checked out the price of the Shure e5c's before I bought my e2c's. $475 :eek: on amazon.com compared to $99 for the e2c's. There's currently a pair of e5c's on UK eBay for £331 :eek: :eek: compared to the e2c's for a little over £50.

    I'm s(h)ure they sound absolutely wonderful and I'd love to give them a go but that's more than my iPod cost!
     
  7. extremelydodgy

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    I have the E5, E3c and ER-6i. I've had the ER-4P, ER-4S and the E2c. I'd say the best bang for the buck by far is the Shure E2c. You get the most important things that a canalphone gives you (isolation, efficiency and a clear delivery of sound in your ears) at the lowest price.
     
  8. Kano

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    Another vote for the Shures E2c. I was disappointed at the sound at first but after a while of playing about with them I found the correct fitting and the sound is superb (tube journeys are now bliss).

    Only problems I can see is your ears will take time to adjust to them and may hurt a little. But over time time this will disappear.
     
  9. Matt Horne

    Matt Horne
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    I had the e2c's very nice but in the end the upgrade bug got me and I bought the e5's as well.. got them from ebay cost about £210 as the exchange rate was very good... personally I think they are brilliant headphones.. and are easily for me the most comfortable I have ever used.. The isloation is great and makes my train commute very pleasant.

    The e2c's are a good place to start though without breaking the bank. Sorry I cannot comment on the Etymotics .. I was always put off a bit by how far they seem to go into the ear canal..

    Cheers

    Matt
     

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