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Recommendation for noise-cancelling headphones?, List of 6 NC headphones
amirkatz
post Mar 3 2005, 14:52
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Hi,
I plan to buy a pair of portable noise-cancelling headphones, to be connected to an MP3 player, mainly to be used in two scenarios - airplane (economy class sad.gif and open-space office environment (lots of people talking).
After some research I came up with this list (with list prices):
a. Sennheiser PXC 250 ($150)
b. Koss QZ-99 ($60)
c. Koss QZ-5 ($50)
d. Koss QA-Pro ($60)
e. Etymotic ER6 ($140)
f. Sony MDR-NC11 ($150)

Looking for comments and recommendations.

Thanks.
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woody_woodward
post Mar 3 2005, 18:49
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I have used several different models of noise-canceling earphones. I my experience, I found them all to be be very similar in their noice cancelling abilities. The higher priced ones just had better sound quality for whatever I was listening to. I listen to Old time radio and talking books, so super HiFi was not necessary. A couple of weeks ago I picked up a pair at Pep Boys (yes, the auto parts store) for $20. Brand name was Coby, and they work for me.
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CSMR
post Mar 3 2005, 18:57
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Go for an in-ear headphone such as the Etymotic ER6 on your list. Noise reduction doesn't come with a sound quality loss with these phones.
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jacksonta
post Mar 4 2005, 00:11
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I just bought a pair of Shure E5s in-ears after having had a pair of old Sony noise-cancelling ones. These are like night and day. First of all they sound great. Second the noise isolation is stunning. All I can hear aside from the music is my own breathing occasionally. Shure has a range from E2 to E5 - pick the best you can afford and have fun.
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Jojo
post Mar 4 2005, 01:03
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the Bose ones are awesome smile.gif


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DonP
post Mar 4 2005, 02:11
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You won't get total silence from the outside world.. typically 15 dB reduction.

They will work better on low frequency noise than high, and on this point generally work better the closer the sensing mic is to the drivers. As that distance becomes a significant percent of the sound wavelength, the ability to cancel suffers due to uncertain phase delay.
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amirkatz
post Mar 6 2005, 11:48
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Thanks for all the responses. I also checked out the Shure E2/3/5 and as far as I can tell, they do not have active noise cancellation, so I wonder how they compare to to the "real" NC headphones.
I also looked at the Bose QuiteComfort2 and they're way too expensive for me - $300 list.
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mickywicky
post Mar 6 2005, 17:58
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Generally speaking I would not go near active noise-cancelling models. They sound cool and all, but you do lose some sound quality. If you're not afraid of in-ear canalphones, go for Shure or Etymotic's. I have the ER-6 and they're excellent.
For your uses, active noise-cancelling would be good in an airplane, marginally better than canalphones, but in a loud office, the ER-6 and Shure's E2c (to same their entry-level models) are a blessing.
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sehested
post Mar 6 2005, 18:15
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I have been using Sennheiser PXC 250 for more than a year and am very pleased with their performance.

I use them for air travelling and for commuting on my bike to / from work.

Their bass reproduction is excellent and their noise cancelling on airplanes amazing.

They come with an adaptor that allows you to use it with the on-board entertainment center. Since I begun using them I have no problems following the diaglogue of the on-board movie.

I also tried the sony's but they are no where as good as the PXC 250.

I have not tried any of the in-ear solutions, but my experience from wearing earplugs for a prolonged time (8 hours) is that it is more tirering than wearing regular earphones.

That aside I would expect the in-ear solutions to sound better, but to be more uncomfortable when worn for longer periods.
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CSMR
post Mar 7 2005, 06:42
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Eerplugs are often particularly uncomfortable. The in-ear phones are better, but not quite as comfortable as ordinary phones. I know Etymotic provides various tips for the right fit.
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amirkatz
post May 26 2005, 08:26
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I finally bought the Sennheiser PXC 250 ($140 or so in Best Buy) and I'm very happy with them. They come with a nice soft pouch (can be inserted on the belt) with adapter for home strero plug as well as the aircraft plug. The active part is neat (size of a cigar) houses two AAA batteries and can also be clipped on the belt in vertical or horizonal position. They definitley thought very hard about convenience & function.

I've used them during flights and I now use them in the office to mask out conversations in my room as well as in adjacent rooms.

Bottom line - good buy.

Amir
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rohangc
post May 26 2005, 19:34
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I am somewhat skeptical about using the in-ear type phones. I think, if you are even slightly careless, you might end up damaging your ears with them. As it is prolonged listening to ordinary headphones itself is considered dangerous. Just my opinion, anyway.
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snookerdoodle
post May 26 2005, 19:46
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QUOTE (rohangc @ May 26 2005, 12:34 PM)
I am somewhat skeptical about using the in-ear type phones. I think, if you are even slightly careless, you might end up damaging your ears with them. As it is prolonged listening to ordinary headphones itself is considered dangerous. Just my opinion, anyway.
*


I have one of the Shure (I can't remember, and it's not marked on them anywhere) in-canals and believe that just the opposite is true. I tend to play them at much lower volumes.

A buddy who is also a recording engineer swears by the etymotics.

The downside in an office is that they're too good - folks walk into my office and have to smack me upside the head to get my attention. At least I think that's why they smack me upside the head... wink.gif

Mark
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Jebus
post May 26 2005, 20:17
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I think the Shure E2Cs should be at the top of your list. They aren't even on there!
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MusicLover
post May 26 2005, 21:44
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Take a look at Sony 71s for about 50 bucks, or thier clone Panasonic HJE-50 for 25, half the price!
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HotshotGG
post May 26 2005, 22:24
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QUOTE
I have been using Sennheiser PXC 250 for more than a year and am very pleased with their performance.

I use them for air travelling and for commuting on my bike to / from work.

Their bass reproduction is excellent and their noise cancelling on airplanes amazing
.

I just recently started using the pair of PXC 250 I got for Christmas I was reluctant to use them until I actually was going to put them to good use. I am proud say I am very impressed with them. The bass response and reproduction diaphram is really well constructed and the carrying case is always a plus! I also like the fact they are closed cans. I haven't got around to trying the noise cancellation on them as I haven't had to, but I am willing to bet it's top notch as well. I recommend picking up a pair wink.gif.

This post has been edited by HotshotGG: May 26 2005, 22:30


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damaki
post Feb 24 2007, 21:16
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I'm reviving this old thread because there does not seem to have much change on this. I am the owner of some Etymotic ER6 but since I have got some smallish exzema in one of my ears, I cannot really use it for long periods.
The point is that I would like to have advices about the Bose cancelling headsets and the Sennheinser PXC 300. The Sennheiser ones seems to have good reviews, but I'd like some more personal, concrete experiences.
It is mostly for train/bus usage.


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metalica732
post Mar 4 2007, 05:22
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I have the Shure E3c's and they absolutly pwn. They have perfect sound and very punchy bass that won't wimp out on you it's a great pair of buds.
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kanak
post Mar 4 2007, 05:38
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QUOTE (damaki @ Feb 25 2007, 02:16) *
I'm reviving this old thread because there does not seem to have much change on this. I am the owner of some Etymotic ER6 but since I have got some smallish exzema in one of my ears, I cannot really use it for long periods.
The point is that I would like to have advices about the Bose cancelling headsets and the Sennheinser PXC 300. The Sennheiser ones seems to have good reviews, but I'd like some more personal, concrete experiences.
It is mostly for train/bus usage.


I've posted my experience with the Shure e2c over here

(didn't want to double post). Hope that's helpful to you. Feel free to ask questions.
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CiTay
post Mar 4 2007, 17:28
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He already bought Sennheiser PXC 250, guys...
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