Company: Ultimate Ears/Logitech
Model: Metrofi 170/vi, 220/vi
Compatible: All iPods, iPhones
Ultimate Ears MetroFi 170, 170vi, 220 + 220vi Earphones
It's been years since Ultimate Ears first announced its Metro.fi initiative, designed to broaden the company's super-premium series of in-ear headphones downwards into the $100-and-less market; way back when, we heard supposedly finished Metro.fis, then Ultimate Ears changed them, and then - as the company was being acquired by Logitech - we lost track of whatever was going on with the company. Flash forward to early 2009 and Metro.fi has re-emerged as MetroFi, with four new designs: the basic $50 MetroFi 170, a mic-equipped version called MetroFi 170vi ($60), and flashier versions called the MetroFi 220 ($80) and mic-equipped MetroFi 220vi ($90). The 170 and 220 are virtually identical to one another except for the 220's partically chromed casing and a slight tweak to the driver that increases apparent treble performance, while the vi versions each have a good microphone that's separated from a single play/pause/call button found lower on the cabling. Shown in January, they will be available in February, each packaged with three sizes of silicone eartips and a carrying case.