My earbuds, headphones and speakers through the years
This is my first blog post, so I don't know how these are supposed to go, but i'll try. I've been a big fan of music for as long as I can remember and I've gone through a lot of music gear over the years. So, I thought for my first blog post, I can share my experiences with each one of them and how good they actually were compared to your average listening equipment. Everyone's had a chance to listen to music on some kind of earphones or headphone that's not-so-great, anyone who's been on a flight would know what i mean when i say average. With that as a frame of reference, the goal of this blog is to list a few earbuds, headphones and speakers that would just blow your mind when you listen to them, but at the same time come at a reasonable price.
Disclaimer : I'm not comparing professional headphones or monitors in this post, just consumer grade electronics that are usually affordable to most people.
Now let me introduce you to my first earphones(featured in the image below) now when i say my first earphones, i mean my first good ones, i don't count the other ones like cheap in-flight entertainment headphones or most normal headphones that came with like some cheap Walkman or disk-man or phone, in those days. No, these ones were to-date one of the best earphones I've ever had the experience of listening to. I did own one pair of good earphones before this, they were the Sony Walkman FX 673's but i didn't include them in this post cos I was too young when i had them to clearly remember how good they sounded. Anyway, these earphones did sort of come with a Walkman too, the Sony Ericsson W580 Walkman mobile phone, but they had the best sound quality I can remember compared to some much more expensive ones that I was fortunate enough to try later on.
This brings me to my next pair of earphones, which was way, way, way more expensive and they were the Bang & Olufsen A8 Earphones. Of course for the price they came at, it had some bang to it, some, not a lot. I definitely enjoyed listening to them but definitely not as much as I did my first ones(pictured above). I loved them, the sound was very clear but a bit softer on the low frequency response.
My next pair was this. The Sennheiser HD 206. Now these are considered to be professional headphones but they're really affordable and I would definitely recommend them. These were fairly good since they're meant for studio use and are supposed to have a pretty flat response, the sound was crystal clear and had decent bass. This was my first professional headphones so i think they were pretty good. Though this was a professional headphone I'd give it a lower overall rating than the Sony Ericsson and the Bang & Olufsen, only because the frequency response was pretty flat since they were meant for monitoring and i think the other two had a little more color to it.
I was kind of into monitor headphones at the time so my next pair is also a pair of professional DJ headphones. It's the Numark PHX USB. These are a little more responsive than the Sennheiser, since it is supposed to be used for DJing. It has a better bass response. Slightly better than the Sennheiser.
The next on my list is a speaker. Arguably, the best speaker ever. With the best audio output across devices of all categories. This is the Apple iPod HiFi dock. These were not mine, they belonged to a friend of mine, but they let me borrow it for a really long time, so i got to have a lot of fun with it. This little precious thing sounded like heaven. It's my favorite one on the list. I think if angels could talk to humans, this is what they're voices would sound like.
After using my friend's apple iPod Hi-Fi dock, i fell in love with the sound quality so much, i had to buy my own iPod dock and i found this, the Harman/Kardon Go+Play iPod Dock. These were great too, just as good as it's apple counter-part. The sound quality was great, really loud but still something was missing. I can't quite put my finger on it. but it's great nonetheless.
The next pair was the Sony Walkman NWZ-273. It was one of the first wireless earbuds and it had built-in memory to store your songs. It was a really compact Mp3 player, remember Mp3s? Who still uses those? Everything's streaming nowadays. Anyway, this was one of the best Mp3 players apart from the iPod. Definitely another great product from Sony. Sounds amazing. Really good frequency response. But still nothing exceptional like some of the other products featured on this post. Just a really good pair of earbuds. By the way, in case you're wondering why i'm going on about these products, some of which, no one can even buy anymore and they're also not featured on this site, it's because I just wanted to throw some light on what sound quality means and why it makes a difference when you're choosing your next earbuds, speakers or headphones. That said, all the products on this website have sound quality that matches the products listed here, if not better. Click here to choose one of your own now.
This next one is a beautiful product from Bose, the Bose Soundlink Mini. Really compact, packs a lot of bang for the buck and has excellent sound quality. Definitely one of my top 5 across all categories. The sound quality is so crystal clear it's amazing and quite loud for its size, like really, really, loud. The best thing about it is it's Bluetooth so it easily connects to your phone or laptop.
This was my next pair of earbuds, after a long wait, i finally got the iPhone and along with it came the Apple EarPods. This is surprisingly one of the best earbuds that come free with any smart phone. the sound quality is just amazing. That doesn't mean they're better than the Sony Ericsson HPM 70. That's still the best and my all-time favorite earbuds till date.
These beautiful, pearly-white headphones was my next pair. These were really good. Nothing too great, cos I'd had a lot of better ones before this. But they didn't disappoint when it came to sound quality. Which is what matters. Really clear sound quality and pretty good frequency response all-round. They would get at best, a 6/10. That's because the best is yet to come.
That brings me to the last product in my post and easily the number one in the headphones category. They are the Beats Studio Wireless 2. These were hands-down the best headphones I have ever used. Including the professional headphones in this post. That's because the frequency response was so well crafted that any kind of music sounded great on them. They were perfect for all kinds of music. Plus it had noise-cancelling which is great.
|Sony Ericsson HPM 70||Beats Studio Wireless 2||Apple HiFi iPod Dock|
|Number Two||Bang & Olufsen A8||Numark PHX USB||Harman/Kardon Go+Play Dock|
|Number Three||Sony Walkman NWZ-273||Sennheiser HD 206||Bose Soundlink Mini|
The table above ranks the earbuds, headphones and speakers in their Top 3 places.