Thursday, April 10, 2008

Gear: Headphones

UPDATE: My Phillips headphones are in a trash can somewhere in Central Park. Before heading out to run, I noticed that they leak sound like there is no tomorrow, which I generally hate in a pair of headphones. I think it is a sign of really, really shoddy craftsmanship. Plus, I personally can't stand being able to hear what other people are listening to when they have headphones in, and I don't want to be one those people who shares their music with the rest of the world. I mean, these things were loud enough that they could have passed for speakers. In the first five minutes of my run, they fell out of my ears about five times. I eventually had to just take them out, and after realizing what crap they are, decided that they are not worth keeping. Angry email to Phillips to follow.

One of my greatest frustrations when I am running is my headphones. I feel like I have had many "wrong" pairs, and I'm still waiting to stumble upon the "right" pair. I've looked at runners' forums, various blogs, and I've tried to find reviews and articles about the elusive right headphone.

When I got my new ipod nano, I was disappointed to find that Apple no longer packages the little black foamy covers for their earbuds with the earbuds themselves. As far as I am concerned, that was the only thing that kept my former pair of falling out of my ears on a regular basis. That pair--that is to say, the earbud with foam cover combo--was decent but the wire ended up breaking. I guess you can only ask so much of a pair of headphones that come packaged with something. From those I switched to a pair of JVC jellies. Those were mediocre, and when I passed my ipod mini on to my sister, I passed the headphones along too, since I now had a shiny new pair of earbuds. Earbuds without foam covers, that is.

As it turns out, it doesn't take much for something to knock those little earbuds right out of my ears. Wind blows them out, if I so much as touch the cord they fall out, hell, they even fall out for mysterious reasons that I cannot attempt to explain. They just won't stay in my ears. So I began a search for some over-ear models. The kind with the hook that goes over your ear and that looks like it couldn't possibly fall out even if it was yanked on. I had tried a Sony pair of these a while ago but found, oddly, that my ears were too small. Upon putting them on my ears, they fell right off. It was like trying to hang a picture in the air, there was just nothing for the hooks to grab on to. They have worked really well, as far as I know, for the friend that I gave them too when I realized they were functionally useless to me.

At Target this past weekend, I thought I had found exactly what I was looking for--white, hook-over-the-ear earbuds that looked small enough for my dainty ears, made by Phillips. I tried them out yesterday, and found them to be only slightly better than the earbuds they replaced. In spite of their hooks (which are actually uncomfortable) they fell out of my ears on a couple of occasions during my 7.5 mile run. While I am running, the last thing I want to deal with is my headphones. I want to put them in, go, and not think about them again until my run is over and I am taking them out. I'm not sure why this is so difficult.

For now I will stick with the Phillips, but only because I paid money for them and am stubborn enough to think that maybe if I find the right way to put them in my ears (which will probably have to be done while the planets are in alignment, and it is a waxing moon, and the third Tuesday of a month with R in it, of course) they will be a blessing instead of the curse they are now.

1 comment:

Binx said...

i still think you should try the ones with the different sized rubber pieces that fits in your ear! or whatever, you know what i mean.