The Jaybird Tiger Eye Earphones.
Laura is an earphone expert. She listens to music, talk radio and even computer games while wearing them.
I’m more of a headphone guy. The more mass around my head, the better. It just feels more manly in the studio. However – to this day, my most trusted traveling earphones ride with me on long trips. At almost 6 miles in the air, it’s the only way to go.
I can tell you first hand that a GOOD pair of earphones are easy to find, but put quite a dent in the budget. It’s sad, but the sub-$100 earphones I’ve tried (until now) just don’t cut it. They either fall apart, color the sound terribly or both.
When the Jaybirds arrived at Studio1A, Laura had them out of their attractive boxes before I could even check them out.
These phones are created with the athlete in mind – great for jogging and working out. Being quite the athlete myself (most broadcast and IT engineers are), I swabbed the Endorphin Rush models with alcohol and gave them a try. Excellent sound. Keep in mind that these are sub-$100 models; both of them! Laura and I agree that the Endorphin Rush model is our favorite. The Endorphin has superior noise canceling, a larger driver (10mm) but no microphone.
Microphone? Yes – the Tiger Eyes are designed with the iPhone* in mind, but it’s compatible with most 3.5mm phone jacks. Push a micro-switch on the earphone cable and you’re talking. Another click and you’re back to music or podcasts. We don’t own an iPhone, but love the iPod Touch*! The Tiger Eyes have a slightly smaller (8mm) driver and just a little less bass response. The design also lets the outside world into your ears, just a bit. I suspect this was part of the design since you always want a little auditory input when jogging.
With a price difference of just $10 between the Tiger Eyes and Endorphin Rush, the answer for me was clear. However, I’m not an iPhone user and like to shut out the world when I’m reclining …ah, I mean working out. Both models sound amazing for this price point. They won’t replace my in-ear monitors, but they’re also 1/7th the price! For under $100, you get exceptional sound, titanium protection for the sensitive driver and a cable/connector that appear to be every bit as good as pro models.
Ok, the inevitable gross part. Ear wax. Needless to say, keep these clean. I use rubbing alcohol on a swab every time. I hope that doesn’t hurt them, but so far they are clean and clear. Oh, speaking of gross – there is also a LIFETIME “sweat warranty” too. I’ll just let you read about that.
Really – if you’re looking for a pair of good sounding earphones that won’t break the bank, try these.
Price at record time – Tiger Eyes $89, Endorphin Rush $99
*iPhone, iPod and iPod Touch are registered trademarks of Apple, Inc.
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