I bought the pro version of the E2Cs -- the e2, from Guitar Center for $70. They do warm up after a few days of use. I found the foam pads the most comfortable, as well as having the best isolation. You must play with them to get the best sound, because the angle into your ear is critical to the way the sound comes out.

My only real complaints were that I could never remember which was the left earpiece and which was the right, which made a big difference in the bass output, and that if your ears are dry inside they move about too easily. I have really dry ears and the foam is kind of "scrapey" unless I dampen the foam with a drop of water.

Also, the best way to insert the earpeces is to twirl each one between your finger and thumb to compress the foam, then pop each in and let the foam expand to fit your ear canal.

Compared to the Sonys, the e2Cs have smoother treble and are less "bright," with a fuller midrange and tight but not bottomless bass. I think they're more natural and less "pumped up."

I totally recommend them for travel, especially airplanes and mass transit like busses and subways. For home use I prefer over-ear phones such as Sennheiser 590s or Grados, because they are more comfortable in general.

Posted by grtgrfx on February 25, 2004 at 5:32 PM (PDT) Comment 61

I'm sorry, I may be the only one here to say this but both the Shure E2c's as well as the Sony EX-71SL are crappy and way too overpriced. I bought the E2c first after reading the reviews here and was thouroughly disappointed. Then I bought the EX-71SL, again after reading the reviews here, thinking they will be better and was disppointed with them as well, although they're a bit better than the Shure one. Both of these earhones I've tested with my old Sony MDR-E821 which are less than $30 and I can hear so much more detail, highs as well as lows on those than these other two overhyped and certainly overpriced earphones. Shure flat out sucks and the EX-71SL couldn't compare to it's lesser predecessor. The sounds on both of those are dull and flat. With the EX-71SL, I thought I went wrong and should've bought the EX-70 which are hard to find, but they say they're exactly like the EX-71Sl, and if that's the case, they suck as well.
Plus, I don't know what the hell people are writing about but they are not at all comfortable to wear and they continously fall off. In-ear designs are not so cool.
Standard design are so much more manageable and you don't need to lodge
it inside your ear canal to find the sound quality you're looking for. Also, believe it or not, the 3rd Gen. ipod earphones are way better than these two!
I had to write this because I lost almost $150 on some truly crappy products from what I thought was credible reviews.

Posted by John on February 28, 2004 at 3:02 PM (PDT) Comment 62

I keep hearing people talk about the bad feel of the plastic plugs. I was wondering if anyone tried the put the plugs in boiling water for a few miniutes to get them soft. Then when they cool just a little put them in your ear and see if that changes the shape just enough. Also what about a little baby oil to see if that helps with the problem of finding the right fit.

Posted by Colin Buckley on March 9, 2004 at 12:08 PM (PDT) Comment 63

Has anyone used these for running? I have to continuously adjust Apple's buds on long runs, so I'm looking into inner-ear phones. I don't really care about sound isolation, I'm just looking for a secure fit during physical activity. I'd buy the E2s now, but the review mentioned heavy cables and ear tugging.


Posted by Dean on April 14, 2004 at 9:22 AM (PDT) Comment 64

Hmmm... I have a hard time believing that Sony earbuds are good, and that the cords are Laptop power lead tough. My laptop's power lead is AT LEAST 3mm THICK. (yes, I learned metrics for this site. There are a LOT of british people...)

Posted by MetalMike on April 27, 2004 at 11:44 AM (PDT) Comment 65

Hey DavidC,

I saw that you went to the audiologist and had ear molds made. That is exactly what I want to do but how did you get the ear buds inserted into the plugs? Thanks in advance for any help you can provide.

Posted by Polkster13 on May 5, 2004 at 6:55 AM (PDT) Comment 66

I took all your words for my newly ordered E2C earphones and I can't wait to get them and as soon they're arived here in my office I will try them on right away. I will then let you all know about its performances and sounds.

Posted by Alex Nguyen on May 30, 2004 at 11:41 AM (PDT) Comment 67

HI everybody! I have a dilemma. I'm interested in either getting the Shure E3c earphones, or the Etymotic ER-6 earphones. Does anyone (who either knows a great amount about the two or has either the two) have a suggestion? They're a bit expensive and I want to make the Best decistion instead of a costly one. By the way, I'm a big bass fan and I've noticed that a couple of the reviews had negative remarks about the E3c's. Please feel free to email me. Thanks a whole lot!


Posted by John on June 12, 2004 at 7:52 AM (PDT) Comment 68

.(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) is my email. Thanks again


Posted by John Davis on June 12, 2004 at 8:06 AM (PDT) Comment 69

I have small ears (being only 14), do you think the smallest sized ear things would fit me???

Posted by Liz on July 27, 2004 at 10:56 AM (PDT) Comment 70

I have the Sony ex and the Shure e2's for about 6 months. At first, the E2's dissapointed. Very flat sound... very natural, I like electronic music, didn't work well for me... but then I came to get the foam fittings fitting perfectly. The silicon never did fit my ear.

I LOVE THE E2's now, overall. The only problem I have is the convenience of throwing them on at work. They take a couple of minutes to roll out - you all do that right ? Like a rolling pin, smooth them out till they're as thick as the insert itself, and then hold them in your ear until they expand ? If you're not setting them up right - stop ######## about em until you know what you're doing... anyway. After about 3 minutes of toying with em, someone inevitably interrupts me, and I have to take one out entirely, you really can't hear S*** with em in. Actually just makes me mad at the interrupter smile

YOU DON'T HAVE TO PUT THEM DOWN YOUR BACK EITHER. Wrap em around your ear, and in front of you instead. I never do the back.

Buy em unless you can afford more expensive ones. If you kind of like your Apple plugs that come with the Pod, buy the Sonys.

Posted by Rob on August 7, 2004 at 7:58 PM (PDT) Comment 71

I just got the E2c as a gift, been eyeing it for a while now. I am glad to say I can finally hear what Thom Yorke is saying... Thats my review. I was going to ask a question regarding fitting and tips...but I never read the instructions...So when I did I found out you have to

"To insert the earphone, pull the ear upward and outward to straighten out the ear canal. With the cable coming over your ear, compress the sleeve with your fingers and insert the earphone into your ear."

Had better results after that.

Posted by Vikram Babu on August 15, 2004 at 3:17 PM (PDT) Comment 72

I'm in the market for buying new earbuds, but I was wondering, will these earbuds connect to an iPod with a Speck Flipstand used as a case?

Posted by Justin on August 19, 2004 at 3:43 PM (PDT) Comment 73

I cant decide wether I should get the Shure E2c or the E3c anyone know what whould be better

Posted by ipodman on August 23, 2004 at 9:33 AM (PDT) Comment 74

I should first explain that my greatest need/use of headphones is while I'm cycling. I wanted something that not only sounded great, but was comfortable over a long period of time and stayed put.

I've had the Sony's and they DO sound great and are half the price. But they hurt my ears after a period of time (over an hour) and would not stay seated.

The E2C's however, have the foam earpieces and are made to loop behind the ears. That might sound annoying or awkward (and it's a bit awkward at first) but it adds to the snug fit and comfort. Also, the foam earpieces aid in noise-cancelling much more than the regular rubber ones. They also sound awesome.

So...if it's an active environment you're listening in, go with the E2C's and the foam earpieces.

Posted by Peter J. Gargiulo on August 30, 2004 at 10:33 AM (PDT) Comment 75

I dont know if anyone else had noticed this; I bought these 'phones about 2 weeks ago after the "burning in" period I noticed strange buzzing sounds which occured whenever the HDD was spinning up/down. I thought it was a defect so I tok them back, but it turned out it was when the plug touched the metal part of the iPod. Three layers of finely cut stellotape fixed it though. It created a gap between the plug and the metal. Has anyone noticed this?

Posted by Todoroki on November 23, 2004 at 7:09 PM (PDT) Comment 76

Just got these yesterday. They are pretty comfortable. Not really impressed with the sound quality. From what I read in some of the other reviews, I was expecting better sound quality. The sound seems "muddy" with the high end lacking. Maybe they just need breaking in. As for the sound isolation. They're great. Blocks out just about everything. And they are fairly comfortable. Just not impressed with the sound quality.

Posted by johnebravo on November 30, 2004 at 12:22 PM (PDT) Comment 77

i got these for 67$ on amazon great head phones

Posted by codo on January 2, 2005 at 12:07 PM (PDT) Comment 78

I just returned my Ec2 earphones. I tried hard to like them, however the included pair with my Ipod shuffle outpreformed them. I really noticed a difference between the two. The Shure's had a noticlble lack of base. A bit of a pain to put in and out of your ears. I could see that these would be good for a musician, where you put them in once for a long duration of time. I found myslelf struggling with them anytime I had to take them in and out (ordering coffee, telling the taxi where to go, etc....) Not worth it for me.

Posted by bbob pouch on January 24, 2005 at 7:19 AM (PDT) Comment 79

I just ordered a pair of these and I was wondering if the sony rubber plugs fit on these. I own a pair of ex71's as well and I wanted to use the plugs from it on the shures because I think they would be more comfortable.

Posted by Havo on January 25, 2005 at 5:49 PM (PDT) Comment 80

Love them.

Not terribly techie so can't comment as some of the other posters have. However, love the isolating feature. Get on better with the silicon plugs not the foams (unlike a lot of others I think).

Also find them great for running. They wedge nicely in the ear so I don't lose them as I go along. There are no big padded bits to get soggy or fall off (like the Apple ones). I've read that you can hear the 'pounding' of your feet as you run and I agree. However, I think this 'pounding' is very quiet, particularly in comparison to the person on the treadmill next to me!

Posted by ChrisMouse on January 27, 2005 at 2:56 AM (PDT) Comment 81

got these last week, first impressions:
regarding the size of rubber plugs use this guide.
large - for shrek
medium - for shaq
small - for me and most humans.

if that does not work try the foams.
i like the rubber/plastic as it is less messy and the seal is good.
For very small ears i can see the outside cartilage of your ears being pressed against the cone part of the phones - you may then want to try the e3.
The case is tight but doable.
The noise isolation is good and the sound is very nice. i am sure that you can get better phones than these but i realy don't care if i can't hear the 15th voice layer on the Tori Amos song or the sound of Tito Punte's jacket button scraping on the cymbals in the 1972 recording of Mambo Diablo...

for the money this is a good pair of earphones that deliver good isolation and great sound.

Posted by nyocean on February 13, 2005 at 3:36 AM (PDT) Comment 82

whadda u know?
my ears are bigger than i thought... after a while i tried the medium plastic plugs and have an even better seal than with the small ones!

Posted by nyocean on February 15, 2005 at 7:55 AM (PDT) Comment 83

Just received my pair of E2c. I've been using the Sony's MDR-EX51 and... What a difference! Is impressive! After reading so many posts in different forums, I was a not shure about them. Finally, I decided to order them and didn't notice any problem in achieving a good seal. The medium sleeves fit perfectly in my ears. The sound is rich, and the bass is clear (not muddy, as in the EX51's). They are worth the money I paid. Have only 5 days with them, and surprised by the comfort (others have experimented problems). My ears have been made for them!!!

I've read about the "break in" subject and can't believe that my E2c's can sound better. Of course, I'm a newby and my only reference are the EX51's. From now, I am saving money for a pair of E5c (or E6, when they become available).

I recommend this earphones without any reserve!!!!

Posted by andresborbon on March 25, 2005 at 10:16 AM (PDT) Comment 84

I went from the EX71s to the E2cs. The EX71s are great earbuds, but the E2cs are just incredible. My wife is a concert pianist and she too is impressed with the E2cs.

Posted by ablessg on April 24, 2005 at 7:23 PM (PDT) Comment 85
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