Yeah, BOSS, you go ahead and do that.

Posted by mafo on January 20, 2004 at 4:00 PM (PDT) Comment 21

like what want and buy what want.... mafo is right on... go ahead BOSS, do just that.

i think the apple buds lack some bass, but you can compensate by enhancing base in the eq and it more than makes up for it in the ability to reproduce clean trible.

Posted by stretchingcanvas on January 20, 2004 at 4:47 PM (PDT) Comment 22

What I want to know is, do these produce the same echoing effect that the EX71's do? I would think it's cause the EX71 cord is so thin, if they don't then I might considering getting a pair and getting replacement holders from audiocubes.

Posted by steve on January 20, 2004 at 5:11 PM (PDT) Comment 23

Someone please help? I need prof. advice from you folks... Please smile?

Posted by Me on January 20, 2004 at 5:55 PM (PDT) Comment 24

prof, get the 71s, i got them and now cannot use the ipod ones (partly cos they feel like they cut my ears). if anything, the comfort is 10x better than the apple stock buds and atleast twice as good.

Posted by timmy on January 20, 2004 at 7:08 PM (PDT) Comment 25

good review. boss has issues. decent buds for the money but obviously not the best out there. fit is different for everyone so everyones gonna have a certain opinon.

Posted by Q on January 20, 2004 at 7:42 PM (PDT) Comment 26

Yeah I guess that's the problem ("fit is different for everyone"). So, I will be purchasing a Sony MDR-EX71SL Fontopia Earphone.

Do people prefer this over any other earphone for this price? Or do they prefer the 51s, or the 70s?

What's the 71s echoing effect?

Thanks people, your advices are greatly appreciated!

Posted by Me on January 21, 2004 at 3:23 AM (PDT) Comment 27

I'm looking into an alternative to the ear buds that come with iPod. Sony, Shure, etymotics...etc. why wouldn't the old fashioned "over the head ear cupped headphoneds" work better. what are the drawbacks. Who makes a good headphone? What about the Bose?

Posted by rich on January 21, 2004 at 4:00 AM (PDT) Comment 28

Oh my God, these things suck!! I bought mine and listened to them. They're terrible compared to the stock earphones. I'm no audiophile, so I thought maybe it was just me. I let an audiophile friend of mine try them and he concurred. I sent them back to Apple that day.

Last night I bought a pair of Sony earbuds. Sound quality is much better than these, and marginally better than the stock earphones, but the ergonomics of the Sony pair is bad.

Posted by rdlink on January 21, 2004 at 9:51 AM (PDT) Comment 29

I agree with "Q" and "Me", fit IS different for everyone.

However, I've used the Sony EX70 and EX71 for a while and now I use Apple's in-ear earbuds. For me, Apple's fit better AND sound better than Sony's. I do not have any problems with the Apple version falling out. Since I've been using in-ear earbuds for quite some time now, I'm quite comfortable with inserting them a little deeper than I used to. This has made a tremendous difference. With all in-ear earbuds, it is extremely important to get a good seal with the ear canal.

I've also spoken to other people using Apple's in-ear design who were not as happy with them as me and I mentioned the ear canal sealling issue to them. Some of those people who tried it again were much happier with the sound quality after inserting the earbud deeper. Etymotic has some useful instructions on inserting earbuds on their webpage:

Just scroll down about half way and you'll see their instructions.

It seems that it is partly a matter of educating people to properly use in-ear earbuds. But, clearly, some of the people above are experienced in using this style of earbud and should know what their doing. As mentioned above, fit IS different for everybody, and some people may never be happy with the fit... but I'm a happy camper. For the price, I prefer the Apple version.

Posted by Ben on January 21, 2004 at 9:55 AM (PDT) Comment 30

For those of you who have switched your 71s inserts onto the apple phones could you please tell me what size apple inserts worked best for you and then what size sony inserts worked best after the conversion. I use the small apple inserts and need to know what size sony inserts i need to order for the best fit.

Posted by gogoman on January 21, 2004 at 11:21 AM (PDT) Comment 31

BTW: I had a good seal on these when they were in my ears. In fact they were sealed so well that I could feel them pulling on my sinuses. The sound still sucked.

Me, the EX71s that I just bought last night sound good, but I don't like the way they're built. They cord from the right ear goes around your chin and attaches to the left ear bud by your left cheek, and the connector there sits up next to your cheek. The cord without the extension isn't long enough, and when you put the extension on it's just more weight hanging off of your ears.

While I like the sound of the EX71 I wouldn't recommend them.

Posted by rdlink on January 21, 2004 at 11:46 AM (PDT) Comment 32

I have Sony EX71 and Shure E3C. I bought the Apples too. The fit sucks! The shape of the earpieces, for most people, is just WRONG! They just fall out, just like the review says.

Its a shame, because the sound is actually quite good. (based on using them with the Sony earpieces). Someone should be fired for such a silly mistake!!!

Posted by parannoya on January 21, 2004 at 12:34 PM (PDT) Comment 33

I have dug deep and paid out for the Bang & Olufsen earphones which are suspended over the ear and not only remove the irritating hiss from the original "buds" but are more comfortable over long periods and should fit everyone. Together, the sound, fit and look are really something. A lot of money but well worth it to you afficianados out there, give them a try!

Posted by Lord Snooty on January 21, 2004 at 1:26 PM (PDT) Comment 34

I also have the Bang and Olufsen earphones. $ 160.00, but well worth it. A great pices of equipment, sound great and fit great!!!

Posted by Andy on January 21, 2004 at 2:42 PM (PDT) Comment 35

like I said before, fit is different for everyone. I do think, however, that since so many people are complaining about seal/fit that there was some slip up somewhere with the human factors portion of the design. They look great but in order for them to be successul they have to fit the 95 percentile of human beings and ears are all different in so many different ways it's hard to get a magic solution. I like to listen to music but I'm not shelling out 160 bucks for B&O earphones. Good for the money, better things are out there but you pay for them out the nose. The only way you can really see if these things work for you is to try them and that goes for etymotics, sony and apple.

Posted by Q on January 21, 2004 at 3:53 PM (PDT) Comment 36

I noticed that he said the apples sound sharp and thin. This is how my EX-71s sounded when I just got them... it's because they weren't broken in. Another thing is that you can order the earpieces from Sony, prolly in black to match the other earbuds. My suggestions is always keep two. The stock earbuds are great for when you are somewhere where people might be talking to you or trying to get your attention. You can actually have a conversation with someone or just know that they are trying to talk to you when you have those on. With ear-plugging ones, you can't really talk to someone, and someone will have to physically tap you to get your attention. Just thought I'd mention that.

Posted by Sam on January 21, 2004 at 5:24 PM (PDT) Comment 37

I like the Apple earphones. Yes, they do sound a thinner than the Sony's (71s), which I also own (in white from But, they do sound clear to me. The Sony's have so much bass that the sound is (as someone said earlier) muddied up a bit. As for fit, haven't had any slippage problems. They seem just a comfy to me as the Sony's. I've also owned the Shure e2's and was highly unimpressed. They are bulky, awkward to wear, and the sound was inferior to the Sony's which are also cheaper.

I have been curious about the FutureSonics, but to be honest, the looks throw me off. I know it's a petty issue. But... important to me. I did speak to someone at FS who even admitted that Sony's would probably have more bass. The FS are made to reduce ear fatigue. Regardless, I didn't buy them. Has anyone tested them versus the Sony's?

Posted by dean on January 21, 2004 at 5:28 PM (PDT) Comment 38

I absolutely hate the ER-6 in-ears, they are way too tinny, no bass whatsoever. The Sony MX70s are the clear winner from what I've tried so far, but I still find them extremely uncomfortable; and don't get me started about their cord. Brutal. I love my original iPod earbuds. Easiest to take in and out, etc etc. I want to try the Apple ones, but I'm not a big fan of the in ear.

Posted by Andrew on January 21, 2004 at 8:53 PM (PDT) Comment 39

I'm an audio buff and love quality sound. Unfortunately, these new "plugs" are the worst I ever purchased! Do not buy them since they easily fall out of your ears and have horrible, tinny and anoying sound quality. Thumbs down to Apple for making such crap - I love Apple, but cmon....

Posted by Mike Cefaratti on January 22, 2004 at 8:11 AM (PDT) Comment 40

Some Sony MDR-G72 phones will help a little in your quest to get decent sound from an iPod.

Posted by Gary Wright on January 22, 2004 at 7:39 PM (PDT) Comment 41

Hey, I just got a new 3g ipod, but i don't really like the headphones. after a while they kind of hurt my ears. I don't normally like the feeling of in-ear headphones, but most of the ones i get are pretty cheap(around 15-20 bucks). Does anyone else get this problem. If i get a more expensive pair do you think it will help. I like how convenient in-ears are, just not the comfort.

Posted by Brian Pierce on January 23, 2004 at 9:21 AM (PDT) Comment 42

Get some Sennheiser MX500's. They are only 18.00 and sound better than all this stuff. So what if they aren't in-ear. They get awesome bass response. Available at NewEgg, Amazon, and

Posted by Zach on January 23, 2004 at 10:14 AM (PDT) Comment 43

I just got my Apple in-ears and they sounds so much better than the shipping 'phones..I'm hearing instruments that i never knew existed in my music. They fit perfectly in my ears, insert easily and don't fall out, solid seal, suction and all..Amzing to me, i'm no complete audiophile but i appreciate good sound. So I would highly recommend these buds.

Posted by Jonathan Coffman on January 23, 2004 at 12:40 PM (PDT) Comment 44

Thank you Mike Cefaratti!! Up until I read your post I thought I was watching the digital-age version of the Emperor's New Clothes. How can so many people claim good sound out of these pieces of crap?!!

The iPod rocks, and the sound on the factory earphones is pretty good. But the $40 earbuds really do suck. Tinny is the word I was looking for. They fit my ears pretty good, though. Just terrible sound.

Tried the Sony EX71s, too, and while they sound good they are terrible ergonomically. I bit the bullet and bought the ER-6s from Etymotics. We'll see if they're worth $99.

Posted by rdlink on January 23, 2004 at 2:57 PM (PDT) Comment 45
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