Lend Me Your Ears: Mike Calvo Reviews 3 Sets of Headphones

I’ve been traveling for a number of years with Serotek, and one thing I’ll never leave home without is a set of headphones. Recently, I went on a quest to find the perfect set for my needs. Before we jump in to the review, I should first mention my criteria for a good set of headphones. I want something that has great bass response, is comfortable to wear for a long period of time, and isn’t going to break the bank.

When shopping for headphones, or any audio gear for that matter, there are a couple of things to keep in mind. The first is that everyone’s opinion of what makes for a   good  product is completely different. You can read glowing reviews all day, and still be unhappy with the product when it’s finally in your hands. Conversely, you might choose a product that everyone else hates, but it sounds great to you and that’s what matters. It’s also important to remember that the sound quality of speakers or earphones will improve over time. So, you will be able to have the best idea of how they will sound after about 40 hours of use. This is because the speakers move, and the coils warm up, so they sound better with age.

Let’s talk a little about earbuds. Earbuds are great when I’m on a plane and I want to tune out the world. As I’ve looked for earbuds, I’ve played with everything from Dr. Dre to Bose, and I don’t like ones that sound tinny. I love the

Radius Atomic Bass 2 – Black Carrying Case Tangle Free Slider $39.95.

These things do not sound tinny, go in your ears very well, and cancel out the noise. They are like similar products from Bose, except that you don’t have to carry a power pack or pay the premium. They give you incredible bass output by means of a small capsule that rests in the outer ear, along with the standard piece that goes into the ear canal. These work amazingly well, for example, when listening to a described movie with the Victor Reader Stream or other mobiel device. You can use them to listen to a movie, and it’s easy to completely immerse yourself in the  experience. These are especially nice when you consider their low price point. If you’re looking for something to control an iPhone or other device, There is a similarly  priced model which includes  an inline mic and buttons to control music playback.

While earbuds certainly have their place, if I’m walking around the house and watching my kids, for example, I want something a little different. I want to keep one ear open, but don’t want to sacrifice sound quality. I looked at many over-the-ear styles, and even asked for recommendations from the people I follow on Twitter and other social networks. In my research, there were two sets of headphones that were consistently mentioned, and for good reason apparently. Out of all the headphones I tried, I liked these two the best.. The

Sennheiser PX 100-II On Ear Miniheadphone (Black) $67.95

 are the slightly more expensive of the two. Sennheiser is well-known as a name you can count on by people who are in to broadcasting and pro gear. This set comes in a denim-type case with an adapter that allows them to be used in a 1/4 or 1/8 inch jack. I have one complaint  about any over-the-ear solution, and this model is no exception. With this style of headphones, people can sort of hear what you’re listening to. This is more the case with music than with an audio book, since the music is usually a little louder. That minor inconvenience aside, these are awesome! The bass and the highs are both clear and natural-sounding, and that’s a must for me with any set of headphones. The X100’s, which preceded the unit I’m reviewing,  can still be bought online, but there are a couple features that make the X100-II’s stand out. One is a non-tangle cord, so there is one cable that comes from the left ear only. They have a one year LIMITED warranty, and it’s important to find out exactly what that warranty covers. Overall, you’re never going to go wrong with Sennheiser gear, but you’re also going to pay a bit of a premium to own it.

 The second set of over-the-ear headphones I reviewed is  the

Koss PortaPro Headphones with Case $31.35.

One of the things that amazed me about these earphones is that they’ve been around since 1984 and have never changed their design, and they continue to be one of the top sellers on Amazon for portable headphones. They look a little more retro and not as sleek as the Senheissers, but that doesn’t affect their sound. There are a  couple of features I really like. They have a sliding adjustable headband which helps a lot in getting the most comfortable fit, and that’s important if you’re going to be wearing them for long periods of time.. There are also switches that move the earpieces a little away from your ears so they fit a little more comfortably. They’ve got a Y-shaped, under the chin cable and are a little larger than the Sennheisers. They are made of metal, where the Sennheisers are plastic, and they don’t come with an adapter. As with the Sennheisers, the bass and the highs on these headphones are amazing, and are rated at 20 to 20,000 hertz. Unlike the Sennheisers, which are in their second iteration at minimum, these have never changed. And for half the price, no one I’ve shown them to can hear a $35 difference. The Koss warranty is amazing because it’s a NO QUESTIONS ASKED, LIFETIME warranty. They’re made here in the USA and are great-sounding earphones. The fact that the Koss headphones have survived the transitions through various kinds of players — from Walkman, through CD player, through MP3 player — is part of what makes them my favorites, especially out of the two over-ear styles.

I don’t think you’ll regret a purchase of any of the three sets of headphones I’ve covered here. If you want to purchase these and support the Serotalk Podcast Network at the same time, you can

use the Amazon affiliate links provided in this article.

If there’s a category of products you’d like us to review, write us at resources@serotalk.com

Listen to 20 Minute MP3 Where Mike Calvo Discusses His Top 3 Choices for Affordable Yet Good-Sounding Headphones.

Thank you for listening, and we welcome your comments as well.

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One Response to Lend Me Your Ears: Mike Calvo Reviews 3 Sets of Headphones

  1. James Mannion says:

    Thanks for this review and others like it. I really like when you do such reviews. I had been thinking about ordering the Koss PortaPro Headphones for a while and just did place the order for them after listening to this. I wanted to share another suggestion that I also have and like. They are the Audio Technica m-50 studio headphones. They may not have been eligible for this comparison or to be considered for your needs because they are not all that portable, however with that said they do come with a carrying bag and they do fold to an extent. They could be carried in a backpack or something. These headphones are very comfortable though and they do sound very good with great detail and a great bass response for sure. I don’t see their products mentioned a lot and I think it might just be that people aren’t as aware of them. I believe they are respected by professionals though from what I read.

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