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Author Topic: Headphone Question: Bose or Etymotic Research?  (Read 1853 times)
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« on: November 17, 2004, 10:47:34 PM »

I recently got turned on to the amazing difference between good quality headphones and the trash that usually comes standard with most portable audio devices.  My entry into the world of better-than-garbage headphones came in the form of the relatively inexpensive Grado SR-60s, which have served me well.

Now, I've moved and am lucky enough to be enjoying commuting hell every day on the commuter rail into Boston.  The Grado's are nice with my iPod in a quiet environment, but they do nothing to block out the ambient noise on the train (conversations, cell phones, train noise).  So, I'm looking into some noise cancelling options.  My two front runners are:

Etymotic Research ER-4 MicroPro Earphones ($249.99)  These don't offer active noise cancelling, but due to the in ear design, they are supposed to be excellent at the task.


Bose Quiet Comfort 2 Noice Cancelling Headphones ($299.99 - $100 discount) These do actually include active noise cancelling circuitry.

I'm going to check out the Bose headphones this weekend, but I wanted to see if anyone had any thoughts, opinions or experiences with either one before I venture out.  Thanks for the help!

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« Reply #1 on: November 18, 2004, 12:36:51 AM »

Man those are some crazy prices for headphones. Ill never pay over $20 for set.

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« Reply #2 on: November 18, 2004, 01:15:29 AM »

I've heard only good things about the ER-4's.  

I've never heard anyone recommend a Bose product, much less any noise-cancelling headphone.

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« Reply #3 on: November 18, 2004, 03:16:03 AM »

I own the Bose headphones and they're great.  I have a noisy PC and they totally cancel it out.  It's gotten to the point when I feel guilty using my regular speakers instead of them.  They are definitly the Ferrari of headphones.  If you've got the money, go for it.
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« Reply #4 on: November 18, 2004, 03:47:16 AM »

Bose, the Ferrari of headphones?  I don't know about that.  Audiophile stuff gets pretty crazy.  But there's a world of difference between the $20 headphones and even slightly better quality ones.

You may already know about it, but if you don't, you should go to headroom.  They have excellent prices and really good buyer's guides (see for the Etymotics you're interested in).

HeadRoom has a nice sub-$100 buyer's guid at

Oh, and the review that almost made me buy the Etymotics is at  He has a lot of good headphone reviews there.
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