The headphones supplied with my Apple iPod were abysmal quality and did not do my music justice! I had frustrating times in the gym where I could hear other music and conversations around me, rather than my own music. Coupled with this, I also discovered that the headphones did not keep my music personal but blasted it out, so that I could annoy everyone around me. I imagine we all know how frustrating it is when you next to someone on the bus and you can hear their "personal" music blaring out.
I decided to purchase some more headphone and chose some noise isolating ones. I found the Ultimate Ears by Logitech for a very decent price of £26.00. I bought them online on eBay after a recommendation from a friend. The headphones seemed to specialise in combining music and sport; which is exactly what I wanted them for.
The headphones come on a 115cm thin cable lead. They are orange in colour and the lead is fairly thin. They fasten into a standard sized headphone jack and compatible with most mp3 players or handheld gaming devices. The orange lead is very flexible and seems to be a little weak around the actual headphone jack connector. This point of the lead suffers from a lot of movement and after a few months of using it, it seems a bit wobbly, like it isn't fitting snuggly. My thoughts are that after a period of time and prolonged usage, the lead may lose connection. A good point to the headphones though is that they come in a little hard plastic case, these means they are protected when in my gym bag and not getting knocked around or pulled. this lead has a very small control fastened into the wire that increases the volume or turns it off; this is usual especially when running. There is also a shirt clip in the pack to avoid dangling wires that could get in the way whilst working out. I don't use this as I have an arm band and run the wire under my bra strap!
The actual ear buds of the headphones are very robust feeling and sweat resistant, making them a perfect companion to the gym. The design of these ear phones alarmed me at first as they fit very differently to other earphones. Instead of just slotting in the ear and hanging loose, there is a wire that you fasten behind the ear. This unique design feature prevents gravity pulling them out and causing discomfort. With the wire fastening over your ear lobe, it adds extra security and stops that dragging feeling that I have experienced before when running. There is nothing more uncomfortable than an ear bud that keeps working itself loose. These shapable loops are designed to be moulded to any sized ear.
The ear buds are very comfortable and made from a soft mouldable material. The headphones come with five interchangeable sets of silicone ear buds; these pull off and slide on. They come in a variety of sizes from xxs to large. I only use the small set so find the other sizes a bit useless really. The headphones should be sold in sizes and come with five spare sets of of the same size. This way, you can easily replace a lost ear cushion. It is a nice idea though and perfect for those with smaller ears.
This was the main selling point for me so I was eager to put them to the test. Overall, I found a vast improvement on noise isolation compared with my Apple ear phones and similarly they do a good job of keeping my music to myself. When running in the street and at the gym, I found I did not need the sound turned up as loud as usual and I could not hear as much traffic or other sounds. The headphones don't isolate all sounds; I can still hear the bass of the music in the gym, but they are much better than other headphones.
I was very pleased with the sound quality and even when the headphone volume is turned up loud, it sounds exceptionally clear. They are turned for extra base which gives an impressive sound and projects very well into the ear. There is no tinny sound or crackling, just good quality sounds.
I am very impressed with the sound quality of the headphones; my only concern is that they are not designed to last and will have a shift life span due to the flimsiness of the wiring. The actual headphones are great quality though and as long I do not lose one of the headphone cushions, I should be ok! They come with a two year warranty so you do get a bit of peace of mind with them. The average price for these is around £30, but you can pick them up cheaper if you shop around. These are perfect for the gym and getting sweaty in but I would not recommend them to hardcore music listeners, there are much better earphones available, but for the price, these are more than adequate.