Help - earphones for small-eared insomniac!

Discussion in 'Ask The Experts' started by Nightowl, Mar 19, 2013.

  1. Nightowl

    Nightowl Casual Listener

    Mar 18, 2013

    After previous failures, I'm looking for some earphones that will stay comfortably in my relatively small ears while listening in bed during the wee small hours. In desperation (and with the "encouragement" of Mrs Nightowl!), I tried a Google search and found a thread from this Forum from last year about earphones for people with small ears.

    From that it looks as though a reasonable shortlist might be the Phonak 012/112, Westone UM1 or Shure SE215. Would that still be right, and which one might top it for me?

    I have a budget of about £120. I've got a pretty eclectic taste in music, but if something could handle a range from Choral through Orchestral to Earth Wind & Fire in full flow I'd be a happy bunny. I'm not a bass-head, but I do like a good "full" sound.

    My alternative at the moment is using my full-size open-back headphones, which requires a minimalist approach to movement, and also doesn't do much for marital harmony...

    Any advice very gratefully received - by both of us!
    Last edited: Mar 27, 2013
  2. krismusic

    krismusic Dynamic Driver

    Oct 6, 2009
    Hi. I am afraid I am going to encourage you to spend more money!
    I just bought a pair of ACS T-15's and am amazed how tiny they are and how good they sound. They are £150 but the real kicker is that the custom tips that are available for them take comfort and isolation to a whole different level. The tips are another £135.
    I am just about to post a review so have a look in " Portable Headphones and Earphones" if you are interested.
    Having said all that I know that the Phonak are designed to be very comfortable. I don't know anything about the othe makes you have short listed.
    The great thing about hifiheadphones is that they have absolutely brilliant customer service. I strongly recvomend that you give them a call and have a chat. The other thing is that they let you return your purchase for exchange or refund if you are not happy. I don't know how they make money but they couldn't be more helpful.
    Good luck to you and the Mrs.
    Last edited: Mar 19, 2013
  3. Nightowl

    Nightowl Casual Listener

    Mar 18, 2013
    An update...

    Having benefitted from the advice I found on this forum I thought I should do a quick report-back for anyone else in my position. That’s the need for headphone advice, not insomnia!

    I took krismusic’s advice and gave the guys a ring. Good move! I’ve now had a pair of Phonak 112’s for a few weeks, which I just love – great sound, and so comfortable I can forget I have them in. I’ve been using them with the Comply tips that came with them, which have been a revelation after years of silicone ones. The Phonak silicone tips were an improvement on those, but the foam ones are something else.

    For anyone like me who wasn’t familiar with the Phonaks, they come with interchangeable filters – grey that highlight mids, and black for more bass and high frequencies. I also had the chance to try out the green filters that come with the 012’s – the “perfect bass” ones. I was expecting my preference to be between black and green (both of which I enjoyed, though to my ears the black had a bit more detail). The grey filters though have, completely unexpectedly, won me over. So clean and detailed a sound, especially with vocals. I also find them much easier to listen to for longer periods - a big plus for me.

    Anyway, that’s just personal preferences. But for me they’ve been a great buy. And Mrs Nightowl is just as pleased!

    I'd also like to say to anyone else reading this like me in a state of technical ignorance and terminal indecision – give these guys a ring. You won’t regret it.

    Thanks all.
    Last edited: May 2, 2013

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