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Bose Quiet Comfort Headphones
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Axo1ot1
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Jan 23, 2003, 05:41 AM
 
I am thinking of trying to get a pair of these, but I am not so keen on paying the whole $300. Is there any place on the net that I could get them for less?
     
Steve
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Jan 23, 2003, 09:39 AM
 
Do not purchase Bose equipment!

I'm not sure what's special about these headphones, but hardly any Bose equipment is worth the price. There's always much higher quality stuff for a lesser price!

Check out the Arstechnica A/V FAQ answer to headphones. Here's an excerpt:

In the $50-100 range, a wide array of choices start opening up.

The legendary Grado SR-60 is around $60, and many consider it to be an extremely good choice for use on a portable player. Easy to drive, and it has a forward midrange many consider good for rock. If you want the Grado sound but want more bass, the SR-80 is said to have much better bass then the SR-60. They run closer to $100 however.

There are some choices from Sennheiser in this price range, the first being the HD495. Its biggest strengths are its very neutral sound, particularly the mids, and a good, but somewhat grainy treble, however this headphone has a weak bass output, and isn't as well suited to bassy music as a result. It is also harder to drive, and benefits more from using an amplifier.

Sometimes you can find the Sennheiser HD570 for $99 and are rather bright (More treble), with good mids and are slightly weak on bass. They are regarded as good headphones for acoustic music, if that is mainly your thing.

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Jan 23, 2003, 09:51 AM
 
Sony Dj mdr-v700


loud, and great sound. 150$


they feel good on your ears and has a good chord ( like a telephone) and is good for short and long usage
     
macvillage.net
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Jan 23, 2003, 10:36 AM
 
I agree, Bose is overrated.

I found that unless your really picky about awesome quality, even those newer Radio Shack headphones aren't bad... and can be had for cheap too.

Personally, I have an Altec Lancing pair that are real nice. And a Sony. Both are awesome... and much cheaper than Bose.
     
G4ME
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Jan 23, 2003, 10:40 AM
 
but i think he is talking about the bose that cancles the exteranl sounds lowering the external sounds by somthing like -40 db.


but yet again, i think other companies have somthing similar.

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Face Ache
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Jan 23, 2003, 10:40 AM
 
Originally posted by Steve:
Do not purchase Bose equipment!

I'm not sure what's special about these headphones, but hardly any Bose equipment is worth the price. There's always much higher quality stuff for a lesser price!
Do not purchase Apple equipment!

I'm not sure what's special about these computers, but hardly any Apple equipment is worth the price. There's always much higher quality stuff for a lesser price!
     
xi_hyperon
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Jan 23, 2003, 10:45 AM
 
Originally posted by G4ME:
but i think he is talking about the bose that cancles the exteranl sounds lowering the external sounds by somthing like -40 db.


but yet again, i think other companies have somthing similar.
You are right, those are the noise cancelling headphones, so they are naturally going to be more expensive. I borrowed some to use on an overseas flight and man, it really makes a difference. You don't realize how overbearing the sound of the plane is until you've had these on and you finally take 'em off.
     
MrBenn
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Jan 23, 2003, 11:10 AM
 
I'm fascinated by them too, I've no doubt all walkmans/personel mp3 palyers will include this feature in time. When they do it will be very popular. When iPod inculdes it I will put mine on and never take it off again. "Sorry, I can't hear you. I'm not currently accepting sound from the outside world...."

I'd love to know how well they work, I hate that plane noise, drilling into my brain and making me angry.
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daimoni
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Jan 23, 2003, 01:44 PM
 
.
( Last edited by daimoni; Jul 3, 2004 at 11:13 PM. )
     
MrBenn
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Jan 23, 2003, 06:37 PM
 
?
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tikki
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Jan 23, 2003, 06:40 PM
 
I like my Bose WaveRadio. It's the best radio on the market IMO, and it has made me turn off the TV during the day to listen to talk radio or to the local alternative station instead.

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Axo1ot1  (op)
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Jan 23, 2003, 06:43 PM
 
Don't tell me what to get. I already decided. I just want to know where to get it for cheap. I have it on much better autority than any website you can throw at me that these are the headphones for me. I have tried the Grado SR80s and yes they are very nice, but they suck ass for use in a recording environment, and let in tons of outside sound. My sound design teacher at NYU Film School (read: a professional with enough skill to impart knowledge to the next generation) reccommended these to me.
     
tikki
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Jan 23, 2003, 06:47 PM
 
Originally posted by Axo1ot1:
Don't tell me what to get. I already decided. I just want to know where to get it for cheap. I have it on much better autority than any website you can throw at me that these are the headphones for me.
You are my hero. More people need to be that blunt.

work: maczealots blog: carpeaqua
     
Steve
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Jan 23, 2003, 06:51 PM
 
My sound design teacher at NYU Film School (read: a professional with enough skill to impart knowledge to the next generation) reccommended these to me.
No offense, but any "professional" that recommends Bose equipment either has a ton of money to spend or they buy into useless marketing drivel that comes from Bose.

The fact of the matter is, you can get much better headphones (especially noise-cancelling ones) for a lot cheaper than Bose, and they would sound better too.

But if your mind is already made up, check www.pricegrabber.com and Google's new shopping tool, www.froogle.com .
( Last edited by Steve; Jan 23, 2003 at 07:23 PM. )

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Steve
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Jan 23, 2003, 06:57 PM
 
database errors made me double post
( Last edited by Steve; Jan 23, 2003 at 07:22 PM. )

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G4ME
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Jan 23, 2003, 07:04 PM
 
wow when did google come out with that, about time. looks good for a beta

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Brien
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Jan 23, 2003, 07:04 PM
 
I saw noise-canceling headphones at madcally's booth at MwSF.
     
Steve
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Jan 23, 2003, 07:21 PM
 
another database error post
( Last edited by Steve; Jan 23, 2003 at 08:14 PM. )

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Kenneth
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Jan 23, 2003, 07:26 PM
 
I saw those BOSE headphone on last year MWSF, didn't see it this year. It was quite good while playing with iTunes, it really works on the noisy environment. Meanwhile, for $300 I might get something else.
     
G4ME
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Jan 23, 2003, 07:26 PM
 
never seen a tripple post, over two other posts, someone wants the extra count.

I GOT WASTED WITH PHIL SHERRY!!!
     
Steve
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Jan 23, 2003, 08:14 PM
 
It's hard when I keep getting database errors and try to post it

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Phanguye
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Jan 23, 2003, 08:21 PM
 
my friend got them and he sold them within a month of getting them for a significant lose... but do whatever you want, www.pricewatch.com is good too
     
Xtopolop
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Jan 23, 2003, 10:10 PM
 
Originally posted by Apple Pro Underwear:
Sony Dj mdr-v700


loud, and great sound. 150$


they feel good on your ears and has a good chord ( like a telephone) and is good for short and long usage
I second the Sony MDR-V700's (~$90 from etronics.com).

I got them w/ my 10 GB iPod and absolutely love them. They're pretty standard gear for DJ's, look great, and sound even better. The Sennheizer HD-25 Studio Monitor headphones are actually supposed to sound even better, but the look just doesn't appeal to me.

I agree, Bose is overrated/priced.
     
Tristrami
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Jan 24, 2003, 12:15 AM
 
Do not buy the Bose $300 headphones. They suck. Buy the Sony MDR V700. You can pick up a set for $129 at the Apple Store, and they're fantastic.
( Last edited by Tristrami; Jan 24, 2003 at 01:06 AM. )
     
crazyjohnson
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Jan 24, 2003, 12:51 AM
 
Sennheiser!
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Jan 24, 2003, 01:30 AM
 
If you want something with really high quality, and that will still block out extraneous sounds, try these

http://www.etymotic.com/ and take a look at the er-4 model

these are seriously high quality sound (reckoned to be one of the best headsets in the world) and don't require batteries. They are the same price range as the Bose, but better quality (IMHO) and better sound blocking. Wearing them in the ear is an acquired taste, but you can get custom earmolds made that accept the drivers.

When I was engineering live events, I used to have custom plugs with changeable filters (different levels of attenuation frequency ranges) and they were comfortable for many hours at a time.

I'm not telling you not to buy bose, that's your choice, but if you're going to spend that sort of money, I wouldn't take anyone's word for it, no matter how well qualified. Particularly not with something as personal as sound. if you can try out both, I would really recommend it. You may find you prefer one to the other, but at least you'll know.

As for looking at stats for equipment, I can only refer people to an old Linn hifi poster, which was an Andy Warhol style print of a banana. Underneath it said, "it's as relevent as specifications in hifi". The suggestion being that it doesn't matter what the specs say, it's how it sounds to YOUR ears. What I like in a hifi, is going to be different to what someone else likes.

Trust me, I spent last saturday listening to a $25000 hifi, with a single cd deck, amp and speakers. Mind blowing is all I can say. I want those speakers so badly.

If you want to know how the electronic noise cancelling headsets work, take a look here:

http://www.anrheadsets.com/tutorial101.html
http://www.anrheadsets.com/tutorial201.html

this is the company that makes the aviation headset that I use. I tried the bose and the lightspeed and the lightspeed were better to my ears, at half the cost. Your mileage, as they say, may vary.

If you want more information that you can cope with on headphones, try these sights

http://headwize2.powerpill.org/index.htm
http://www.headphone.com

Happy listening,

J.
By all means let's be open-minded, but not so open-minded that our brains drop out - Richard Dawkins
     
Steve
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Jan 24, 2003, 07:34 PM
 
^^^ Great post.

I didn't have time to get into other options but the ones pointed out are great alternatives to the Bose headphones.

Axo1ot1: Go listen to a few different sets of headphones and see what you like and can justify spending .

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Axo1ot1  (op)
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Jan 25, 2003, 01:45 AM
 
I heard the Bose at the Apple Store today. I couldn't find anything that approximated what I'll be listening to on them, but I found some techno stuff to test the bass etc. on. They really do an amazing job of eliminating background noise. There were people talking music playing cars driving by I put the headphones on and it just stopped. It was really cool. Unfortunately the left cone was blown out so the bass on that side sounded like a flatulent rhinoceros so I couldn't give them a good sound test.
     
phantomdragonz
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Jan 25, 2003, 03:02 AM
 
I have a pair of the v700's.... they rock.... I REALLY love em.... I need a new pair though I think mine are falty.... they are cracked and the ear pads are hard as a rock.... but I love em.. I highly reccomend them....

P.D.
     
Nicoleto
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Aug 9, 2003, 07:36 PM
 
Perhaps you should take a look at these.

http://www.shure.com/earphones/eseries_e5c.asp
     
Sherwin
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Aug 9, 2003, 09:17 PM
 
Originally posted by Axo1ot1:
Don't tell me what to get. I already decided. I just want to know where to get it for cheap. I have it on much better autority than any website you can throw at me that these are the headphones for me. I have tried the Grado SR80s and yes they are very nice, but they suck ass for use in a recording environment, and let in tons of outside sound. My sound design teacher at NYU Film School (read: a professional with enough skill to impart knowledge to the next generation) reccommended these to me.
Trust me. If you're looking at pro gear you should be looking at Beyer DT150/250. Sorry, but IMHO everything else is consumer masquerading as pro.

You'll be able to wear these for 12 hours straight and they'll outlast your career (on account of being completely field serviceable). As for external noise cancellation, it should be enough to say that they're designed to be used by people who stand in front of peaked Marshall stacks and still want to hear both tracks of Tibetan finger cymbals.

I'm a professional (having lectured/produced, etc).
     
Angus_D
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Aug 10, 2003, 06:28 AM
 
Originally posted by Nicoleto:
Perhaps you should take a look at these.

http://www.shure.com/earphones/eseries_e5c.asp
I know someone who bought a pair e2cs and he says they rock, so I'm sure the e5c are up to scratch
     
MichaelB43
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Sep 5, 2003, 11:16 PM
 
Since I own a pair of the Bose QC's, I thought I'd chime in here. Many of the posters on this thread obviuosly have little experience with attempting to block out the noise of an airliner with headphones.

The drone of the airplane engines will go RIGHT THROUGH most headphone earcups, just like bass from a big subwoofer goes through that car that pulls up next to you with the stereo cranked. Cancelling such a noise requires "active" cancellation. In other words, the headphones need to create sound exactly 180 degrees out of phase with the jet engine noise, so that the two sound waves bounce into one another, effectively cancelling one another out.

Earphones such as the Etymotic will NOT block out the drone of airplane engines. That being said, they will probably block many frequencies you run into back on earth quite effectively, and they will sound better than the Bose for music. However, for a flight, forget about it.

Pro headphones such as the Beyer's I'm sure will sound fantastic and isolate the listener from ambient noise. However, ambient noise and the drone of jet engines are two VERY different beasts. It is a joke to suggest that these could replace an active noise cancelling headphone for reducing noise in flight.

I have tried a number of different noise cancelling headphones on flights, including the Sony (not sure which model, as I swapped mine with another flyer to try them out). While the Sony's sound great, it does NOT do nearly as an effective job cancelling airplane engine noise as compared with the Bose (which the Sony owner clearly indicated).

So, if you want a pair of headphones that sound better than the Bose for less money, they are certainly out there. However, if you want a pair of headphones that sound fine, but cancel as much airliner noise as possible, you cannot beat the Bose. That is why they are mostly purchased by frequent fliers and not audiophiles.

As a sidenote, the Quiet Comfort II just came out, which are a big improvement over the originals. They supposedly offer much better audio performance, and fold flat. Maybe at some point I will upgrade. Not so much for the performance, as mine sound fine to me, but the fold flat design makes them much more portable.

As for the Bose bashers, such as Steve, I doubt they have actually tried these on a long flight. But I do realize many people love bashing Bose.
( Last edited by MichaelB43; Sep 5, 2003 at 11:30 PM. )
     
maxintosh
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Sep 6, 2003, 12:25 AM
 
I agree. I had a pair of Sony noise-cancelling headphones and they blew. All they did was make the sound more high-pitched. I've heard good things about Bose's noise cancelling technology. And their WAVE radios kick ass.

On another note, I really don't like Froogle for the simple reason that you can't sort your results by price! I want low-to-high prices, darnit!
     
Sherwin
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Sep 6, 2003, 06:17 AM
 
Originally posted by MichaelB43:
Pro headphones such as the Beyer's I'm sure will sound fantastic and isolate the listener from ambient noise. However, ambient noise and the drone of jet engines are two VERY different beasts. It is a joke to suggest that these could replace an active noise cancelling headphone for reducing noise in flight.
The OP never said anything about needing the things on planes - by the sound of it he's a film school student looking to listen to his work. Thus, pro headphones are the most suitable for him.
     
Eug
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Sep 6, 2003, 08:49 AM
 
Earphones such as the Etymotic will NOT block out the drone of airplane engines.
Yes they do. I own the Etymotics. Put on the Etymotics and the airplane engine's drone disappears.

Perhaps you misunderstand what they are. They are not "earphones" in the traditional sense. They are earplugs that also produce sound, and a very good sound I might add.

I'm sooooo glad I don't have to deal with the bulkiness and weight of the Bose headphones. I have not listened to them myself, but every description I've seen from people who have used both the Etymotics and the Bose (first version), say the Etymotics win for sound quality hands down. (I don't know about how the Etymotics fare against the Quiet Comfort II since I haven't seen any reviews comparing the two yet.) I have been told that first version of the Bose is much better than other noise cancellation phones on the market, but that's not saying much. I've tried several, and they all suck @ss.

The main drawback of the Etymotics is the same as why they're so popular. They're earplugs. If you don't like earplugs you won't like the Etymotics. Personally, it took me 30 minutes to get used to them.

The main drawback of the Bose headphones is they don't cancel out noise like human voices, etc. (but the Etymotics do). Get ready for a painful flight if there is a crying baby in front of you. No engine noise, but the crying will come in loud and clear.
( Last edited by Eug; Sep 6, 2003 at 08:59 AM. )
     
voyageur
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Sep 6, 2003, 01:04 PM
 
The Apple Store is selling last year's Bose noise-cancelling headphones (the original model) to educational customers for $199.
     
Kilbey
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Sep 6, 2003, 02:44 PM
 
Originally posted by maxintosh:
***SNIP***
On another note, I really don't like Froogle for the simple reason that you can't sort your results by price! I want low-to-high prices, darnit!
On the left hand side of the screen is an option for sorting by low to high or high to low.
     
msh
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Sep 6, 2003, 04:11 PM
 
Originally posted by Eug:
Yes they do. I own the Etymotics. Put on the Etymotics and the airplane engine's drone disappears.

Perhaps you misunderstand what they are. They are not "earphones" in the traditional sense. They are earplugs that also produce sound, and a very good sound I might add.

I'm sooooo glad I don't have to deal with the bulkiness and weight of the Bose headphones. I have not listened to them myself, but every description I've seen from people who have used both the Etymotics and the Bose (first version), say the Etymotics win for sound quality hands down. (I don't know about how the Etymotics fare against the Quiet Comfort II since I haven't seen any reviews comparing the two yet.) I have been told that first version of the Bose is much better than other noise cancellation phones on the market, but that's not saying much. I've tried several, and they all suck @ss.

The main drawback of the Etymotics is the same as why they're so popular. They're earplugs. If you don't like earplugs you won't like the Etymotics. Personally, it took me 30 minutes to get used to them.

The main drawback of the Bose headphones is they don't cancel out noise like human voices, etc. (but the Etymotics do). Get ready for a painful flight if there is a crying baby in front of you. No engine noise, but the crying will come in loud and clear.
I have a pair of Ety's and I second Eug's recommendation. They sound great, very accurate and provide excellent isolation. I haven't flown with them yet, but from my experience with them and my experiences flying, they will do fine at cutting out the drone.

Plus, they don't need batteries; they will always work. They are sonically very accurate. I would be concerned about the Bose's active noise suppression affecting the frequency response of the headphones. I would also be concerned of the frequency response of Bose headphones themselves. Bose equipment seems tweaked for better sound. Not what you want for professional audio use; accuracy and neutrality is key for pro use.

Also, I love my Grado's. But you certainly don't want to use them in any situation that requires sound isolation. They bleed like crazy and pickup outside sound very easily. That is just the nature of their design.
     
waxcrash
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Sep 9, 2003, 06:33 PM
 
I agree with most of the posters here that you should pass on Bose. I admit they sound very good, but for less money you can get headphones that sound the same or better.

I personally recommend Sennheiser's HD 280 Professional. I use it with my iPod and it sounds better than most high end stereo systems. You can pick them up for $100.

More info here.
     
qnxde
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Sep 9, 2003, 07:46 PM
 
From http://www.intellexual.net/bose.html

It is estimated that Bose has spent more dollars on advertising last year than ALL other high-end companies COMBINED. Does it have an effect? Sadly, yes. A few years back, the United States Air Force signed Bose onto a multi-million-dollar contract to design noise cancellation headsets for Air Force flight crews. Bose won the contract over two other companies simply because of their "more established name" (brand recognition). The concept of a noise cancellation headset is to actively monitor the noise frequencies emitted from a jet engine and the turbulent wind, and reproduce the exact signal 180 degrees out of phase, thus theoretically canceling it out completely. Many reputable manufacturers have successful done so as well. Bose produced a model that cost approximately $1000 per unit, which failed to cancel out a significant amount of noise. The company used the contract as an opportunity to unload obsolete parts from years back. Bose pawned off thousands of outdated interface connectors for which there were no longer commercially available mating jacks, and incorporated them into the headsets. The Air Force, proud as it was, didn't scrap the project, but instead spent countless millions more replacing the consoles in a number of aircraft to make them compatible with the said headsets. In the end though, the Air Force did terminate the contract when test crews found that the headsets were ineffective and non-durable. This whole mess was created over a brand name's alleged reputation and prestige. Bose is now selling a downgraded version of these headsets to commercial airlines and to the consumer public. They now work to a minor degree, but are not surprisingly still easily outperformed by their competitors. These consumer market headsets are also very, very poorly crafted. I browse many online audio forums and have heard stories about these very expensive headsets falling apart prematurely.

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maxintosh
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Sep 9, 2003, 08:38 PM
 
Originally posted by Kilbey:
On the left hand side of the screen is an option for sorting by low to high or high to low.
Ooh, that's new... I think... I didn't see that sidebar at all the last time I visited.
     
benb
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Sep 9, 2003, 09:27 PM
 
So, anybody know how the Etymotics ER-6 sound? I want new earbuds for the iPod, but there is no way I'll ever put down $220 for earbuds. I would pay $130 however.

Well, I might if they sound that much better. But man, thats a new iPod.
     
MichaelB43
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Sep 9, 2003, 11:47 PM
 
Originally posted by qnxde:
From http://www.intellexual.net/bose.html
That website review is ridiculous. Hardcore component fans always hate Bose. While there are certainly many systems that produce better sound than a Bose Lifestyle system, none are as simple to use and fit the decor of a room better. The fact is, the products last, they look great, don't take over a room, and have incredibly high spousal approval.

Take a look at this guy's setup on the website. While it may sound incredible, can you see this system in your living room? I personally cannot. My wife would have my head. I guess when I was 18 years old his system would be the absolute coolest. Now that I am in my mid-thirties with child, this guy's system would seem ridiculous to me in my house.

Some people just can't accept the fact that many people like Bose. Many find the sound pleasing, love the looks of it, and enjoy the excellent customer service the company is known for. God forbid someone likes the way Bose sounds. People such as the guy on this website make it their personal mission to "enlighten the masses" by teaching them that what they like is actually bad. What a waste of effort. I don't think he realizes just how intimidating a system such as his is to the "average" audio consumer.

And HELLO, Bose spends many times as much on marketing because they sell many times as much product. It's not rocket science to figure this out! Also, they appeal to a wider audience, so they advertise in a wider range of publications.

I have two systems at home. One is a Denon system with Paradigm speakers, and the other is a Lifestyle 35. I yanked the Denon system out of my living room and use the Bose. I plan on using the Denon in the basement for a Home Theater to be built. I love both my systems. They both sound great to me, but the Bose "fits" our living room better. It is very unobtrusive, visually appealing, and VERY easy for my wife, parents, and others to use. When I had the Denon system running, no one else could figure out how to play a movie except me!
     
cSurfr
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Sep 10, 2003, 12:00 AM
 
I personally used a set of these on a 14 hour flight over to UAE this past year. I flew on a KC-10 (same as dc-10 but with a boom). These are amazing, and they really did block a lot of the engine noise as well as noise from the ac packs. Not only good for music, but good for sleeping as well.


cs
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Eug
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Sep 10, 2003, 09:17 AM
 
Originally posted by qnxde:
From http://www.intellexual.net/bose.html
I've seen that before, and as much as I don't like most Bose stuff (including their Lifestyle products), I call bullsh!t on that so-called article.

AFAIK, that urban legend about the Air Force has never been confirmed.
     
steveismyman
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Sep 10, 2003, 10:35 AM
 
Steve is better tahn you!
     
macroy
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Sep 10, 2003, 12:33 PM
 
Well... since folks are bashing BOSE... I have to throw my .02 in.

I purchased a Lifestyles 30 (?) system a couple years back. With it, I got the Wave Radio for free. I paid roughly $3500 for the system. My main reason for getting this was the attractiveness and savings in my time to do the research for seperate head unit/amplifier/speakers etc... (although looking back, I still paid dearly for that saved time).

While its been a pretty decent system for my home theater, I would not get a bose system again. As a previous post mentioned, its small and looks great, however the biggest issue I have is its lack of expansion ability (It support Dolby 5.1 - but not DTS which is pretty mainstream). In addition, the connector on the sub that receive the input from the unit has failed TWICE! ($100 a pop to fix). That's unacceptable in my opinion. I never used thier support since all issues occured after the warranty period.

Now, the WAVE radio is nice. Although I only use it as an alarm in the mornings. Definitely wouldn't spend $300 on it though.

I've since done the research and have found that I could've gotten some nice systems with more power and expandbility (Polk, JVC, Yamaha etc...) for the price I paid.

Bottom line - The bose system does its job, but its not worth what I paid for it.
     
kikkoman
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Sep 10, 2003, 01:06 PM
 
If you don't mind earphones, definitely consider the sealed models from Shure or Etymotic. As Eug said these are more like earplugs that produce sound. They provide excellent isolation and their compact size makes them excellent for travel. The Shure E2c looks like a good deal at $99.
     
typoon
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Sep 10, 2003, 04:18 PM
 
Originally posted by Axo1ot1:
I am thinking of trying to get a pair of these, but I am not so keen on paying the whole $300. Is there any place on the net that I could get them for less?
Have you tried ebay?
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