I found the way to bridge the gap and solve all the problems listed above while using the standard iPOD earbuds that come with the device. Go to Amazon and buy a set of clear "Eargels" for the JABRA handsfree cell phone headset. The Apple earbuds fit inside the eargels just like the JABRA headset does. The set comes with small medium and large eargels and are fitted for both left and right ears. These eargels are anatomically molded to the shape of a standard ear. True custom molded earbuds cost $200 - these are under $15. Stick the Apple earbuds in the back of the JABRA eargelss and then put them in your ears - they will NEVER fall out, there is about a -5dB reduction in ambient sound, not quite sound isolation but still superior to the ambient sound of the earbuds by themselves, they are WAY, WAY more comfortable than the APPLE earbuds alone and bass response is significantly enhanced.

If you got the money, get the Etymotics ER-4P headphones and order custom earmolds. If you don't - use the APPLE earbuds with the JABRA eargels and you get a lot of the way there for less than $15. If I knew how to get molds like this made I would start a web site and sell them as "Apple Sound Enhancers and Noise Isolation Molded Eargels," then again, maybe I will. I'm gonna need a better name though.....

I ordered clear eargels so the overall look of the iPOD "white on white" coolness could be sustaned. They come in multiple other colors and are otherwise identical.

Posted by Tom on September 24, 2004 at 8:34 AM (PDT) Comment 141

i bought these yesterday and they just plain suck. i can't even hear the bass guitar, the sound quality is thin and annoying & they don't fit right. i'm taking them back today. these are NOT $40 headphones.

Posted by danomyte on October 6, 2004 at 6:42 AM (PDT) Comment 142


I am on my 4th set of these buds and they have just broken aswell... After the 1st pair started sending the sound out of on ear within a week I thought they were faulty, so apple sent me a new pair. then after some goo listening, they broke. Apple sent another pair and said that I should always put them back in the box to avoid damage, because they are actually faulty in design. Then they broke and they said right try one more time and then you can have a refund. Refund please.

They were good earfones and you could listen louder with less noise escaping (no complaints from fellow commuters. But they just dont last. The filaments/wires are weak in the right bud.

Posted by Seb on October 12, 2004 at 6:11 AM (PDT) Comment 143

I noticed some people put them in upside down and report a better fit. So I tried that and it worked but was still awkward. I then tried rotating the earpiece 180 degrees but putting the phones in right side up. This works way better than any configuration i have tired and is a significant improvement to the fit and reduces almost totaly the fiddeliness. It is strange lsitening to songs i have heard a million times and hearing things i had no idea were there. These are way better than the stock buds.

Posted by jpo on October 12, 2004 at 7:43 AM (PDT) Comment 144

these are the best headphones in the world if your wondering which ones to buy here they are get them im on commision

Posted by apple sales man on November 5, 2004 at 6:59 AM (PDT) Comment 145

Last night I purchased the 40GB ipod and I can't believe anyone at Apple ever tested them.

They big enough to fit in an elephant's ear; They fall out of my ear; The black fabric covers have already fallen off and are lost.

If I had four arms I could at least hold them at a correct position, as they sound is good.

I quite amazed that all ipod users have not rebelled against them.

Posted by earshurt on November 12, 2004 at 9:32 AM (PDT) Comment 146

I found the quality to be lacking from the original iPod earphones AT FIRST, but for some reason after a couple of hours of use they seemed to "work in" and give me a better sound then the originals.

Give them a couple days before you send them back.

Posted by Prospekt on December 26, 2004 at 3:33 PM (PDT) Comment 147

I had a strange problem with my Apple In-Ear headphones. I could hear the cable rubbing against my raincoat making a squeaking sound. I also heard a thump thump thump as the cable lightly struck my body as I walked.
These are comically bad headphones, but would be an excellent conductor if someone wanted to get two tin cans and play ‘phone.’

Posted by BlackPippi on January 7, 2005 at 11:57 AM (PDT) Comment 148

i think these things are great midrange earphones. i find them very comfortable, as are the sony ex71's, there really isnt much of a sound differnce, except sony tends to be a little bassier (better if you like blues, rap, r and b). a necessary step up from the stock crap buds.

Posted by sergeantpress on January 10, 2005 at 10:13 PM (PDT) Comment 149

the in ears fit fine, despite what you may have heard. for me, at least. apple's drivers are right on the money, they do not have treble or bass enhancements, which provides "real sound". if you like bass, get the sonys. if you like real sound. get the apples.

Posted by sergeantpress on January 11, 2005 at 9:52 PM (PDT) Comment 150

I read the reviews but I bought these yesterday anyway. Oh, they are the worst earphones I've ever owned, even worse than those I bought for $4.99 at the drugstore 15 years ago.

The fit was okay. I had to fiddle for a while because I read Apple's sit about how to get a good seal.

Where I have issues is the sound. Like "Blackpippa" everytime I moved, the wire leading to the iPod from the buds would brush against my shirt, giving me loud feedback. Not only that, but even when I moved my head from side to side, I would hear this "wooshing" sound. I listen to soft music while I study so yes, this would be a problem for me. I don't know about the tinny or metallic sound, or the lack of bass other reviews talk about -- I'm not that advanced. I just use my iPod when I work out or occasionally when I study and I just want something that sounds good.

I was disappointed because I kind of wanted the cool white headphones but I returned them this morning, and exchanged them for Sony's Bass Booster earbuds for $20.55. They're not so comfortable, but the sound is infinitively better.

Posted by Islareina on January 14, 2005 at 8:03 AM (PDT) Comment 151

i have now own both sets of headphones, and was amused to hear your suggestion of combing the apple earbuds wtih the sony rubber earpieces, as i have been using them like that for over 8 months. that way i get the aesthetics of the sleek white and they stay in my ear snugly. altough the sound quality of the sony's is slightly better than the apple's, there is no comparison as to which look better when using and listening on my 12" powerbook. another factor to keep in mind is the annoying (to me at least) element of the sony earphones which that setup with the left earbud on a short leash and that swooping wire under your chin to the right earbud. i fail to understand the logic of the uneven length, whereas apple's simple symmetry is as always, perfect.

Posted by thecasioconspiracy on January 22, 2005 at 3:12 PM (PDT) Comment 152

I have a pair of apple earbuds, and just like everybody else says, they slip out of your ears like greased lightening.
there is a 29 cent solution, instead of buying a new pair of headphones of sending them back. this is what you do: take a foam earplug, like the ones they used to give you on the plane. cut it in two halves, and flatten each half, and poke a hole in them with a pen. remove the silicon sleeves, and put the apple earbud through the hole in the earplug, and Voila! a low cost solution to the 'sliding out the ears' problem.

Posted by creative thinker on January 28, 2005 at 6:18 PM (PDT) Comment 153

I bought these yesterday and they sound terrible, is there something wrong with my pair? And yes the fit isnt too hot, not happy!

Posted by applebum on February 4, 2005 at 7:14 AM (PDT) Comment 154

For those of you wondering about replacing the stock silicone earbud caps with the Sony replacements that can be found at

First as for sizing, go up one or two sizes from the apple size that you usually use. If you use a Med. in the Apple replacements get the Large in Sony's.

Second, this makes the apple earphones perfect. They sound better than the Sony's very flat compared to the sony's. And, now they fit perfect, and are as or more comfortable than the Sony 71's. And they don't have the annoying too short, too long issue that the Sony 71's have.

Third, aesthetically they look the exact same when they are in your ears as they do with the apple silicone caps.

I have both the Sony's and the Apple's and finally, after mixing the two, I feel I have a perfect set of in-ear headphones...normal length cord, good fit, superb sound isolation, no more falling out, and still look the same.

Posted by johndengler on February 5, 2005 at 3:53 PM (PDT) Comment 155

i loved these, then they broke
I was trying to take off the silicone cover thing and the whole thing broke

Posted by adidas10254 on February 6, 2005 at 11:20 AM (PDT) Comment 156

I've ordered sony replacement buds size M from audiocubes. I use size M with my Apple In-ear.

So, johndenglers, do you think that these sonys are going to be to small or dont fit? How big is the difference?

Posted by KBB on February 8, 2005 at 7:55 AM (PDT) Comment 157

I think some people are being a little harsh on these things. Mine fit perfectly in my ears, never falling out. I may just have wierd ears and maybe the guys who designed them did too but i reckon they rock. The sound quality is excellent if they fit in your ears correctly, though if they are not in right then u cant expect brilliant quality, they were not designed that way. Try them before u buy them, but if they fit in, they rule.

Posted by Levens on February 27, 2005 at 7:51 AM (PDT) Comment 158

I have just received my in ear headphones ordered from the States (i'm in the UK), and they sound really weird and 'tinny'. I'm not sure if there is a fault with them or if that's how they are meant to sound - looking at these reviews it seems perhaps not as tinny as mine! Has anyone else had the same problem or does it seem like mine are faulty? And also if i need to exchange them, can i take them into a UK store if they were bought in the US?? Any help appreciated, thanks.

Posted by s5000 on March 5, 2005 at 8:49 AM (PDT) Comment 159

I have the seinheiser mx 500 earphone with Griffin ear jams. They complement each other perfectly. The seinheiser earphones are very good with high to mid freq delivering crystal clear sound while the ear jams delivers flawless bass. I think its how you mix and match your earphones that matter when you want the song to sound like you want it to.

Posted by Vinod on March 20, 2005 at 8:58 PM (PDT) Comment 160

just bought some of these with my educational discount. they're worth every penny.

Posted by rules on March 26, 2005 at 6:23 PM (PDT) Comment 161

Somebody please help I bought these and its been a year and the left speaker is much louder than the right email the solution to .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) getting it checked by a pro tomorrow.

Posted by TheCritic on April 4, 2005 at 8:23 AM (PDT) Comment 162

I'm switching for the standard ipod headphones to in-ear type headphones . . . I went to my local Sony Store and they didn't have the EX71 in stock; just the EX51's. So, I bought a pair and returned them 5 min later. The reason being was that the way the cable was designed; the lower case y style cable. So, when at picked-up a pair of the Apple iPod In-Ear headphones and was pleased to see that they use the upper case Y style cable. So for those who get what I mean by Y and y could you tell me if the EX71 use Y style cable? Because if so I'll buy some and return the apple in-ear pair.

Posted by audible.com_listener on April 5, 2005 at 7:25 PM (PDT) Comment 163

Just for the record (although this thread is old), I found that for price vs. performance, the best thing to do is buy the Apple in-ear buds, a set of the Shure E2 flex sleeves (the clear ones), and then super-glue the sleeves to the ear buds. They go in deep, they stay, and the sound is delicious. (The super glue is necessary because you don't want to do like I did and have one of the sleeves stuck in your ear for an entire subway ride, during which you are trying not to panic about looking like a chump in the emergency room. Panic was unnecessary: a straightened paper clip took it out quite nicely.)

Posted by Grant Barrett on April 6, 2005 at 8:54 AM (PDT) Comment 164

I don't know how you can say they sound bad? Some of you even say they're worse than the stock buds! I admit they do sound horrible out of the box, but have you ever heard of "break-in"? If not, I suggest you play your headphones for 24hours straight at a volume that's slightly higher than you're accustomed to. After that, your headphones will be "broken-into" and hopefully they sound a lot better. This technique applies to ALL headphones and what I think happens is the speaker membrane loosens up...

Have fun!

Posted by milkpowder on April 7, 2005 at 9:59 PM (PDT) Comment 165
« First  <  4 5 6 7 8 >
related reviews

Apple TV adds FOX Now, CNBC channels
Popular Bitcoin wallet app Blockchain returns to App Store
Report: Apple Stores to support carrier early iPhone upgrade programs
Report: Apple buying talk radio app Swell
Congress passes bill to legalize phone unlocking
Bose sues Beats over noise-canceling patents
iLounge Game Spotlight: Modern Combat 5: Blackout
Apps of the Week: ShipAntics, Modern Combat 5, This American Life 3.0 + more
Report: Apple could launch own mobile wallet this fall
Report: Apple ‘tentatively’ plans mid-September iPhone event

related reviews

Kenu Airframe+ Portable Car Mount
Incipio offGRID Smart Bluetooth Low Energy-Enabled Portable 6000mAh Backup Battery
Divoom Voombox Travel Rugged Portable Wireless Speaker
Logitech protection+ for iPhone 5/5s and +trip
Beats Powerbeats2 Wireless
Incipio Steno Ultra-Thin Bluetooth Keyboard Folio for iPad Air
OtterBox Resurgence Power Case for iPhone 5/5s
Gumdrop Cases FoamTech Case for iPad Air
Ztylus Camera Case + RV-2 Revolver Lens for iPhone 5/5s
JBL Synchros Reflect In-Ear Sport Headphones

related reviews

What’s New in iTunes 12
iLounge Picks: Five Great Summer Party Speakers
Editorial: Endings And Beginnings
Live From CE Week 2014: Brand New iPad, iPhone + Mac Accessories!
What’s New In iOS 8 For iPad, iPhone + iPod touch
iLounge Multi-Editorial: WWDC 2014’s iOS 8, OS X Yosemite + More
The Complete Guide to Apple TV Channels
iHistory: From iPod + iTunes to iPhone, Apple TV + iPad, 2001 to 2010
iHistory: From iPod + iTunes to iPhone, Apple TV + iPad: 2011 to Today
Viewing only downloaded iTunes Match tracks