Looking for new headphones? There are many, many options. The large e-tailers carry a thousand-plus choices. Picking the right one is a question of priorities.
For those that put a high value on African Zebrano Wood detailing AND Ethiopian Sheepskin Leather ear cushions, Ultrasone offers the Edition 10 for $2,500 (above).
If frequency response of 5 - 42,000Hz (whatever that means) is at the top of the priority list, take a look at the Stax SR-009 ($4,500).
But I've never met anyone with these priorities. Most want headphones that produce good sound, include a microphone, feel comfortable and don’t require a credit application to purchase. Here are some choices we like.
BEST WIRED IN-EAR
Monster iSport Victory
Great all-around headphones that sound good and fit most people, and stays put during a workout.
Pros: sound quality above average, water (sweat) resistant
Cons: a little pricey
Buy at: amazon.com
Also look at:
Sony MDRXB50AP ($55): Surprisingly good sound quality for the price.
Yurbuds Inspire 300 ($40): Designed to be “sweat resistant”, some of our staffers swear this is the best workout headphones for the price.
BEST BLUETOOTH IN-EAR
Even if you sweat like this guy, these headphones won’t let you down. The BlueAnt Pumps even work in the pool for surface swimming (Bluetooth doesn’t work underwater).
Pros: waterproof, battery life, workout-ready
Cons: Sound quality is sacrificed a little less than others
Buy at: myblueant.com
Also look at:
JayBird BlueBuds X ($160): A little pricey, but great sound quality and comfortable, secure fit.
Jam HX-EP310 ($40): We were surprised how good they sound at this price point. A decent choice if you are prone to losing your gear or want wireless headphones at a low cost. Our testing did turn up some echo problems when we made calls, but this was fixed by a reboot.