Review & Comparison, Last Update December 30, 2016
Earbuds are a special type of miniature headphones, which were designed as more convenient and portable alternative to full-sized headphones. Earbuds have their peculiarities, pros and cons, finding which will be simpler after reading our review with the 5 best modern earbuds models....Read more...Read less
Earphones, both earbuds and IEMs (in-ear monitors) are very convenient accessories, which are made as miniature speakers for plugging directly into the ears and are used for listening to music and audio records from MP3-players, DAPs, and other mobile devices. Earbuds are loved by mobile devices owners as they are much more compact and lightweight than full-size or over-the-ear headphones and you can take them with you almost anywhere and use them on the go. In addition, earbuds sit more snug in your ears and allow achieving a much better seal and noise isolation than over-the-ear and on-ear headphones thus improving the overall quality of listening.
When choosing any earphones including earbuds the first thing that requires your attention is the Sound Quality. While there is a whole range of measured parameters that are widely regarded representative of earbuds sound quality from an “objective” point of view it all boils down to how much you personally like the sound of certain earbuds. So eventually the subjective perception prevails when choosing between several models. Please keep in mind that in-ear headphones/earbuds are only a link in the “audio record-source device-earphones” chain though affecting an overall listening experience most of all.
Thus, such a parameter as earphones amplitude-frequency response or simply frequency response (the way the earbuds respond to input signals of different frequency in terms of output sound amplitude) that can hardly be defined as good or bad and determines an earbuds model “signature” usually plays a much more important role than other technical parameters. In addition, we all have different music genre preferences so those who like metal and rock music, as well as some electronic music styles, might find earbuds with more punchy and pronounced bass a better option. With that, those who like jazz, instrumental or acoustic music usually consider earbuds that accentuate middle and high frequencies more enjoyable. On the other hand, the same person may choose some earbuds for vocal-oriented music and prefer models with different frequency response for instrumental and more intense music.
As your music listening sessions may last several hours a day the next important parameter that needs to be considered is Convenience of use. You need to pay attention to earbuds design if you want to choose the earbuds model that suits you most. Due to the fact that you're probably going to use this accessory every day you need to make sure the looks and aesthetics of the earbuds you’ve chosen fit you and emphasize your personal style. We strongly suggest you take note of earbuds cable as the quality of this cable affects the earbuds longevity. The cable length and flexibility are of much importance as they directly influence the convenience of earbuds handling and wearing. Another important convenience feature of modern earbuds is an in-line remote control, which allows switching between the tracks, adjusting the volume without even touching your DAP as well as receiving incoming calls when used with a smartphone. With that, the availability of an in-line mic will enable you to use the earbuds as telephone headset and conveniently receive incoming calls with your smartphone resting in your pocket or bag.
Eventually, we came to the point when you should focus on the Distinguishing features of earbuds in question. At that stage, you need to clarify whether the in-line remote control of the earbuds you’ve decided on is operable when paired with your mobile device and enables the full-fledged remote functionality. One of the important distinguishing features an earbuds set has is a supply package. Please, pay attention to the type and the number of eartips included in the supply package. Every person has an individual conch and ear canal sizes, therefore, the more eartip options you are given, the higher the probability of finding the eartips that suit you perfectly and provide the best fit and noise isolation for your IEM or earbuds. Some earbuds manufacturers ship their products with special pouches or boxes (or both) for a comfortable carrying and providing additional protection for the earbuds. Therefore the availability of these accessories adds to the value of certain earbuds.
Each of us, when putting earphones on and turning on favorite music track is definitely willing to enjoy the best possible sound quality. The earbuds you choose influence the sound quality of your mobile audio path most and speaking of Beats By Dr. Dre model the manufacturer has everything figured up. The earbuds themselves have a solid metal housing that provides an enhanced rigidity, which is very important if you pursue an active lifestyle. The Beats sit firmly in ear canals so if you like to do exercises while listening to music do not hesitate to wear them as you will not experience the earbuds falling out. As for the sound quality itself, you will be amazed by the deep and visceral bass these earbuds produce. Those who have a fancy for vocal music will fancy the highly detailed mids of this model by Dr. Dre.
It turns out that the in-line remote control of these earbuds works with the vast majority of modern Android-powered smartphones. The owners of Apple gadgets can also use these earbuds as an accessory, though these Beats earbuds have limited compatibility with some iPhone models and may have some functions disabled.
These earbuds are recommended above all to those who appreciate the sound quality most. The earphones have a good supply package, which includes eartips of different sizes and a special storage pouch that allows you taking the earbuds anywhere you want to go.
The Facts You May Find Interesting
As it is well known, The Beats company was founded by two people: Andre Romelle Young and Jimmy Iovine. Andre Young better known as Dr. Dre and is not only one of the most highly-paid hip-hop artists but also one of the leading music producers. He cooperates with such top-tier performers as Eminem, 50 Cent (Curtis Jackson), Xzibit, Snoop Dog, Busta Rhymes and The Game. At the time of The Beats company foundation, Jimmy Iovine occupied the position of the Head of Board of Directors of Interscope Records company, which is one of the most famous record labels in the USA. The Beats company made its debut in 2006 on the market with its Beats By Dr. Dre model having an American company called Monster Cable as an exclusive manufacturing partner. The Beats brand that has gained success and popularity very fast was tried to be acquired by third-party companies. Despite these attempts the only company that managed to acquire the The Beats brand was the Apple corporation with the transaction amount of $3 Billion, $1 Billion of which reportedly went to Dr. Dre. Before that the HTC manufacturer bought a 50% share of The Beats equity at $300 Million price consequently selling a 25% share of the label equity at $150 Million with retaining the rights on using the brand’s in-house technologies on their smartphones. It is worth noting that Samsung corporation attempted to acquire the The Beats brand, which was unsuccessful, though.
Beats By Dr. Dre iBeats In-Ear Headphones Full Review
Beats by Dr.Dre OMEL-MR-PN-6694832 Black
LG Tone Pro HBS-750 Wireless Stereo Headset
LG Tone Pro HBS-750 Wireless Stereo Headset
Experience an Unlimited Freedom
If you like to feel the comfort in everything the LG HSB-750 earbuds model will spark interest. The thing is that in-ear headphones set will free your hands completely and eliminate the annoying cable connection. As the HSB-750 earbuds model connects via the Bluetooth connection it is compatible with all the (be it a tablet PC or a smartphone) devices that support this wireless technology. The design of these LG earbuds allows them to rest on your neck owing to the body-contoured 3D neckband. The earbuds themselves are kept attached to the neckband with miniature magnets, thus eliminating inconveniences when wearing the set without keeping the earbuds in your ears. In case of an incoming call the LG HSB-750 earbuds notify you promptly with a vibration signal. Those who like listening to music while going for a run or working out will surely have high regard for this model’s ability to operate for up to 10 hours in music listening mode and up to 15 hours in speaking mode on one charge.
Considering the fact that these earbuds by LG have a wireless connectivity you will be able to use them with any mobile devices regardless of the operating system they run on. The main thing is to establish a connection and synchronize the HBS-750 with your portable device. As the practice shows this wireless earbuds model allows for simultaneous connection to two different devices, after that you will be given an option of choosing which device is to use as a sound signal source. The convenient on-case controls offer the use of play/pause functions as well as switching between tracks, volume adjustment and incoming calls answering and declining. As for the tonal balance of the earbuds itself, they deliver a punchy bass with no lack of middle and high frequencies. One can say these Android and iPod earbuds sound amazing being able to deliver a high-quality sound despite the signal wireless transmission due to aptX technology application. The HD Voice technology available on this model ensures a very clear hearing of your dialog partner with no annoying noise.
We recommend purchasing the LG HBS-750 model to all those people, who lead an active life. Having no connection cables these earbuds are convenient to carry around. The feature of synchronization with two devices at the same time will be highly regarded by those users who frequently use several devices and want a fast switching between them.
LG Tone Pro Wireless Bluetooth Stereo Headset HBS-750
LG Tone Pro HBS-750 Wireless Stereo Headset
Skullcandy Ink'd 2 Earbud
Skullcandy Ink'd 2 Earbud
A Mindful Design
The whole line of Skullcandy accessories and equipment was designed and has been produced for the fans of an active lifestyle and outdoor sports. The Skullcandy headphones, digital audio players, and other products can frequently be spotted worn by snowboarders, skateboarders, fans of cross country, downhill or freeride. One of the distinguishing features of the Ink'd 2 earbuds is several color solutions available. We are sure that everyone can pick the solution to emphasize their style. The color of the earbuds model we chose is black with conspicuous company logos made as skulls engraved on earbuds butt ends. The same logo is applied to the eartips, 2 additional sets of which are included, by the way. Conсerning the sound performance of these Skullcandy earbuds they make highs and mids of a record sound quite naturally thus offering you a refined pleasure when listening to calm and vocal music. The authoritative bass produced by these small in-ear headphones will without fail be loved by all the fans of “heavy” and electronic music.
Irrespective of whether you are a professional or an amateur the Skullcandy Ink'd 2 fits for fans of extreme entertainment and brings you an immense joy of listening to music and audio materials when you concern yourself with a favorite occupation.
The Skull Brand Mark
Today you can see skull symbols on many decorations, accessories, clothes and many other things. Despite the commonly held opinion a skull not only symbolizes death but opposing, confronting the death thus regarded a controversial symbol. The symbolic of this kind consolidates various social groups and is very ancient. For example, the skull symbol was used by those warriors of Roman empire who achieved victory in a battle. A skull image was frequently accompanied by a popular “Memento Mori” inscription, which means “remember that you must die” translated from Latin. Some people put fear into this symbol though by others it was regarded a symbol of struggle and resistance. It may be that the Skullcandy company applies skull symbols to its products to reflect a humanity’s aspiration for going beyond the set barriers and experience a true power of music. Using the skull logo the Skullcandy company seems to inspire its supporters to set new records and achievements.
The main feature that differentiates these Apple earbuds from other earbuds models in our review is the absence of soft silicone eartips. Notwithstanding that absence a special ergonomic earbuds shape allows their comfortable plugging into ears and getting the most out of music experience. The Apple MD827LL model was designed with ear anatomy and geometry in mind that is why these earbuds can be securely plugged into the ears. The manufacturer equipped this model with powerful drivers for you to experience your favorite music in full. Moreover, these Apple earbuds are a topnotch hands-free solution and enable you to answer incoming calls. With that, these earbuds enable you to hear an interlocutor clearly and distinctively ensuring a comfortable conversation. Apple MD827LL/A are compatible with the vast majority of iPhone, iPad, and iPod models and are in a great demand among the Apple lovers. However not all iPad models support the operation of the built-in volume controls on these iPod earbuds, that is why we recommend you to confirm whether the earbuds are compatible with your tablet PC or not. In regards to the supply package, we consider the included original case for the earbuds storage and transportation to be very practical. With the original case, you can be sure that your EarPods will be safe and intact and the cord will not entangle when putting them in a pocket or a bag.
As it is seen these EarPods, as other products by Apple have a very good build quality. The manufacturer offers a 1-year warranty for this model, which means the manufacturer is 100% sure about the earbuds quality. The EarPods are encased in plastic, however, this material has a high water and sweat resistance. So, if you are accidentally caught in the rain and get these earbuds with mic wet you should not worry about their future use as they will work as reliably as before. In a warm season or when doing an intense training you sweat much in these circumstances there are many known cases of equipment failures and faults caused by perspiration. However, as we noticed these issues do not concern you if you use Apple EarPods.
In the light of the mentioned above, we can safely recommend these excellent earbuds to all iPhone users and owners of other Apple gadgets. Not only the Apple MD827LL can empathize your personal style but can provide a maximum comfort in operating your mobile device and make music listening a savor.
If you tasked yourself with finding an optimal earbuds model from the point of view of use simplicity and sound quality we call your attention to G-Cord Stereo Sound Noise Isolating Earbuds. The first thing we noticed about these earbuds is the L-shaped plug, which is very convenient in practice. When wearing straight-shaped plug erbuds in a pocket or a bag plugged into your mobile device the cord near the plug or the plug itself can get twisted or broken. In such case you will need to recable the earbuds or even buy a new pair as many models on the market have low repairability. The G-Cord earbuds are more rugged and handy in this respect thus are definitely worth a due regard. Another big advantage of these earbuds reviewed is their vast compatibility, which allows you to pair them with most smartphones by different brands, tablet PCs, digital music players and other portable devices. The in-line remote control of the G-Cord Stereo model was designed for simple use and one button operation. By using different button hold duration you can play/pause tracks, receive or decline incoming calls and activate the mute function.
It is safe to say that buying these G-Cord earbuds won’t make you regret your choice. Offering a high sound quality with an enforced bass will undoubtedly appeal to those who prefer listening to energetic and fast-paced music. These earbuds are pretty hardwearing and convenient with a versatility that makes them compatible with practically any mobile device.
Some Information on Headphones Background
The headphones history began not so long ago, in 1899 with the invention of the device bearing a slight resemblance to modern headphones. The very name of this audio accessory is composed of two English words: “head” and “phones”. At the time of emergence of this device granting the opportunity to listen to concert and church choir singing records in dedicated places was a very popular service rendered in Britain. The device, through which people listened to these records resembled headphones but was equipped with a handle used to hold the device while listening.
An important issue concerning the headphones handling is that the cable may get entangled when worn in your pocket. Not so long ago a group of scientists has conducted an interesting experiment. They used about 3,400 headphone pairs in their research and discovered that earbuds cables can tie in knots of 120 kinds. The researchers figured out that to form a knot an earbuds cable needs only a few seconds. Some of you may find it surprising but earbuds can also be used as a microphone if you plug them into the corresponding socket (assuming you use an adapter from 3-pin earphones stereo plug to 2-pin mic mono plug) though with little efficiency. The case is that drivers of earbuds and microphones actually use the same principle of operation but different aims and approaches.
More Products to Consider
If you want to have your mobile devices always charged and ready to work we recommend you picking one of the best Power Banks, which are examined in one of our reviews.