Sunday, September 28, 2008

The BEST headphones/earbuds period.

I've found them again. They are marketted as the Sony MDR-E828LP. And sells for $10. Yes, you read that right. I bought the same ones about 10 years ago at the UCSD bookstore for about $20 (everything is overpriced there). There is something magical about the Twin Turbo circuit for enhanced bass response. Earbuds in general usually do lack bass, and these don't boost the bass. It just seems like it accurately reproduces them. And for some reason, these are the only earbuds that Sony seems to make that has the Twin Turbo circuit inside. And I do remember my brother listening something with my earbuds and him saying how good they were.

One day, when my dad was driving me home from college, I must have closed the door while half the headphone was still outside the car. And it wasn't salvagable after about 100 miles of driving. I've gone back to the UCSD bookstore more than a few occasions to see if they still carried the same ones years later. But all they sold were the cheaper versions without the Twin Turbo circuitry. And I must have bought those a few times and were disappointed every time. Since then I have gone through about 8 different pairs of headphones and earbuds, spending hundreds of dollars of trying to find something I once lost. Why? The earbuds are that good. You experience music at a much higher level. You can literally close your eyes, sit in a dark room, maybe close your ears to ensure no other sounds escape, and you can get lost in your songs. Its a moving experience.

So just yesterday, I was walking through Walmart because I had just gone through my last pair of descent earbuds, and lo and behold, the only Sony ones they had were the ones I had failed to find in the last 10 years. Maybe I had found them on amazon before, but I had gone with their higher priced earbuds that do not have the twin turbo stuff, and after paying more and more thinking I was going to get something better each time I bought something, I gave up. I have the perfect headphones once again, and I had forgotten how much I used to love being totally immersed in music.

Next time I'm at Walmart, I'm just going to buy 3 or 4 more of these because for some reason Sony is not putting their best technology in their newer earbuds. And even in amazon, they are almost impossible to find if you don't know exactly what you're looking for. They may disappear one day, and earbuds having a life of only a few years, it will be a worthwhile investment.

The only negative thing about these earbuds is that every imperfection in the mp3 is exposed. All the mp3's I got while I had these headphones years back are perfect because I used to download 10 of the same songs, and choose the perfect one. But recently, I hadn't had anything of this caliber to judge the minute differences so all my mp3s are not perfect, and I can hear all the imperfections now. You can hear the differences between the Fraunhofer, Xing, LAME encoders. You can tell differences between 128 vs 160 vs 192 vs 256kbps bitrates.

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