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Old 08-24-2010, 02:29 PM
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Default The secret scam of cheap earbuds

i found this to be a nice and informative write up, though it's not as suprising to me that there is sea of shit (with a crapcherry on top) - phones out there:

http://gizmodo.com/5617200/the-secre...-cheap-earbuds

strangely i cross referenced some passages in my mind with head-fi, don't know why and from where that came up.


EDIT: thread split form here: http://anythingbutipod.com/forum/showthread.php?t=56945 - dfkt
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  #2  
Old 08-24-2010, 03:17 PM
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i found the $100 statement a bit excessive, too. i guess there are some good phones around even at the $40ish range and i really am not that well endowed to buy myself some $100 phones every once and while as i learn that their cables and connections most of the time are imo just as durable as any other budget phones.
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Old 08-25-2010, 01:21 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by deadohiosky View Post
i found the $100 statement a bit excessive, too. i guess there are some good phones around even at the $40ish range and i really am not that well endowed to buy myself some $100 phones every once and while as i learn that their cables and connections most of the time are imo just as durable as any other budget phones.

I agree.
When it comes to head-/earphones there are nice and cheap finds that can sound better than some stuff that is much more expensive. I am not familiar with the world of IEM:s, but when it comes to portable headphones my PX100 that I got new for around $15 when a store had a limited time offer, sound great. Even at their normal price at twice that amount they are a bargain. I'd never go higher than $100 for a pair of headphones.
I am amazed with people paying big sacks of money for stuff like custom made JH13/16/whatever IEM:s, and I follow the threads at Head-fi wearing a grin that is part amused and part amazed.
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Last edited by Danneq; 08-25-2010 at 01:50 AM.
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Old 08-25-2010, 04:18 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by EggyCuppy View Post
I dont really agree with the statement you need to spend at least $100 to get good sound, If your sticking to retail stores that may be somewhat true, but as an example I find both my pl-30 and pl-50's to sound quite good, not as good as some pairs that are 3+x the price but hey Im not likely to spend that kind of money on something that very well could endup dissapearing/being stolen( have had it happen so many times, lost a $300 set of phones once when somebody decided he needed them more then I did....bloody theif...)

also, the linked wooden IEM's in that post are ugly, at least people could go with the Kanen's they are like 4-6bucks shipped from focalprice.....and sound OK(better then most cheapo phones you find here in store shelves)
There's something that's US$79 that'd trash quite a lot of IEMs... The Hippo VB. But yes, generally, from WELL KNOWN companies (Like UE, Shure, etc) for the uninformed tech journalists, you'd have to pay above $100 to get a decent pair.
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Old 08-26-2010, 03:54 AM
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@EggyCuppy

The JVC RX900 seem interesting. I have to look them up! I've got all the DAP:s I need now, but there is always room for headphones!

I am not an IEM person. I know I lose a lot of isolation with earbuds compared to IEM:s, but I prefer the feel of earbuds and headphones.
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Old 08-26-2010, 10:47 AM
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I've never known Gizmodo to really be objective. You can get amazing sounding earphones for as little as 19$ - from MEElectronics, for less than 50$ from a variety of vendors including Mingo, Jays, MEEl, Head-Direct, Victor, the list goes on.
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Old 08-27-2010, 08:29 AM
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They should write an article called "The Secret Scam of Buying Audio equipment or Most Anything."

So much in the consumer world is just rebadged or minor modifications of far cheaper stuff. Even in "High End" audio there are a number of examples of companies taking well made inexpensive equipment and putting it in a fancy box. People then swear the "High End" stuff is far better than the original, even when they are provided plenty of proof that the cheaper and most expensive clone are basically identical.

At least with cheap earbuds you have some justification for these sort of tricks. It's much more disgusting when an expensive portable amp is little more than a CMOY with a battery charging circuit an a fancy case. Or those expensive jeans which are just a much cheaper pair of jeans with a different label an a few tears and wrinkles to make it look worn.

It's all marketing in the end
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Old 08-27-2010, 12:13 PM
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Of course, we've embraced this marketing, the rot of production to developing nations, the holy jeans - all of this we support by buying new stuff, of debating what's good and bad and turning our noses at certain products.

In the end it is marketing because that is what we as capitalists want.
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Old 08-27-2010, 12:45 PM
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Time for some more aggressive marketing, to get these babies back on everyone's heads:

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Old 08-27-2010, 12:51 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dfkt View Post
Time for some more aggressive marketing, to get these babies back on everyone's heads:
*snip of epic Float pic*
Time to trade in the HD650 for some Floats?
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Old 08-27-2010, 01:00 PM
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Jürg Jecklin was a professor at my university, I heard the glorious floats with my own ears.

Anyways, enough of meticulously engineered and hand-crafted listening devices - back to cheap, generic stuff bashing.
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Old 08-27-2010, 01:05 PM
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OK then....shopping results for "iBuds"
http://www.google.com/products?q=iBu...ed=0CDcQrQQwAA
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Old 08-27-2010, 01:11 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dfkt View Post
Jürg Jecklin was a professor at my university, I heard the glorious floats with my own ears.
Wait, you heard them??? How did they sound???

And, just to stay somewhat on topic:

The JVC Flats (I don't think they'll EVER be confused w/the Floats,....) are a really cheap pair of headphones - the the SQ is unmistakeably high quality: JVC Flats
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Old 08-27-2010, 01:27 PM
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@ odigg, well said I agree and there's loads of rebadged products even outside the electronics field, hell they even do it with consumable products like coffee ...
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Old 08-27-2010, 03:02 PM
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@ odigg, well said I agree and there's loads of rebadged products even outside the electronics field, hell they even do it with consumable products like coffee ...
10000% true. Walk into any Costco, Duane Reade/RightAid/Walgreens, WalMart/etc - off brands/rebrands are everywhere, often designated as being "exclusive" to the store.

As if touting that the coffee beans are "a Target exclusive" somehow makes them more appealing to people with half a brain....

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Old 08-27-2010, 03:25 PM
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Forget about how they sound - if wearing those Jecklin Floats means I too will live in a house with that kind of view, I say...

Sign Me Up!
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Old 08-27-2010, 03:30 PM
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Originally Posted by shigzeo View Post
In the end it is marketing because that is what we as capitalists want.
One rather depressing point is that there are no shortage of engineers who went into engineering because they wanted to design and make nice stuff. Unfortunately they (along with everybody else in the corporate world) realized that the quality of a product is far less important than how that product is sold.

You can imagine this doesn't inspire engineers in their choice of career.

Gizmodo is complaining about the "average Joe" consumer. What about the "elite" consumers? What about all the people who spend hours researching products on forums and end up getting sucked into marketing and hype without realizing it?

As for the float headphones, they should get Lady Gaga to wear it. That would fit perfectly with her regular ensembles and drive up the sales 1000%
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Old 08-27-2010, 07:04 PM
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You guys really don't know what the Floats are, do you? Heh, do a Google, learn something.
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Old 08-27-2010, 08:11 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by EggyCuppy View Post
sad part, lady gaga waring them would probably get the ipod crowd to buy them, ad some ugly rhinestones and bling and it would fit the apple image after all :P

and Im assuming you mean the head-fi/s:flo2/HiFiMan crowd :P
Okay, you are generalising waaaaay too much. The reason is that the 'iPod crowd', as you call them, are a rather large group. There are blingy people there as there are in every group, but they don't outnumber the blingy people in any other group by ratio.

I think the people in the S:Flo camp are so worried about defending their player that they say, has no bling factor. The truth is that it is a useless touch screen. The reason it's there? To satisfy the bling crowd. I have this player - it is THE worst touch screen I've ever used.

The player lacks music-playback basic amenities common to the lowliest if iPods: gapless playback, ID3Tag support, real playlists.

I know that I am preaching to a suspect audience, but hating the iPod for bling is stupid. Look at the other players. They are either: shinier, or more shouty about features. iPod isn't about the bling and if you think it is, you live in a very strange part of the world. How can a player that has 30-50% of the market be about anything but normalcy?

Normalcy isn't bling... if everyone owns something, there is no bling factor in it.

Not a single company besides Sony (and maybe microsoft) bundle good earphones with their players. The worst I've used is my D2 earphones that died very quickly, after one bicycle ride. The AMP3Pro ones aren't bad, but in general, every one is rubbish.

At the same time, if a player costs more becasue 'good' earphoens are bundled, it is annoying. I'd rather save money with low end earphones (if there are saving to be had) and upgrade myself. Surprisingly, there are a lot of people who do this, but even if they don't who cares.

Everyone listens to what they want to listen to in the way they want to. Who cares if it is a Cowon or a Sony, or a HiFiMan or an iPod? If you have problems with the company they listen to, it shows your own weakness to marketing rather than theirs.
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Old 08-27-2010, 08:44 PM
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Yo, my Cowon J3 is more "blingy" than most iPods - w/the exception of the touch. What difference does it make? I wanted it, and that's what mattered. I was exposed to it, saw how great it is, and decided. Most iPod owners don't know any better - why fault them? Really, look around you - how many even know there are even other brands of portables?

Marketing and the media decide what becomes popular, and what your buddy owns,.........
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