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Very very strange product, serves a purpose, but strangely
on May 15, 2013
I've had several over the ear headphones, and several for iOS devices like these. These however are a paradox in design.
first things: Compared to other Sony iOS products, the L-shaped jack is HUGE, it's very large and long, at over 1.25" from the tip of the plug to the back of the "L" and it's strain relief is the type that is not molded to the cord, but a simple sleeve with holes in it, made of very weak plastic. the cord is also unusual for Sony: instead of a singular wire like most of their products, it has two-sets-of-wires, molded together, but the kind that are meant to be 'pulled-apart'. These are cosmetic comparison to several other Sony headphones and earbuds I have, but they look and feel very cheap.
THEN It gets WEIRD. There is an in-line remote for iOS devices that is in-line with the left side earpiece (which is also unusual, most have it on the right for right-handed use) this remote is GIANT. 1.5" x .25" x .35" - compared to an apple inline remote that is sleek and thin, this is a giant box of plastic. It is hollow, and you can tell. on one side is rubberized buttons, but they are beneath the surface of the strangest designed button-tactile shapes, a + and - symbols that are so thin and shallow that human fingers cannot discern you are touching anything - making the tactile nature useless for figuring out which is plus and which is minus. then in the middle is a tiny dot .0625" in diameter, that is also shallow. You must squeeze these very very hard to make them work, and the center button actually hurts a little to press because it digs into your skin due to how hard you have to press it.
The ear pieces: everyone's ears are different. I'm sure some people's ears fit these perfectly, mine however have the issue where they will fit very comfortably, but the ear piece pops out of my ear, like it doesn't protrude far enough toward the ear canal to stay in place, the design of the ear loops seem to *pull* the earpiece away from my ears, and unless these are seated snugly in your ear canal, you don't hear much.
There is nothing but bass. WEAK bass, tinny, strange, boxy, muffled bass. If you have an iPhone, you'll have to turn on "Bass-reducer" or "treble-enhancer" EQ setting to get anything resembling normal sound balance. Here's a for instance: if you put on Star Trek The Next Generation on Netflix, the hum of the ship is so loud that you can barely make out voice dialog. that is not normal. I think these may actually be defective, but turning on either of the aforementioned EQ modes mitigates the issue.
Lastly the best part: the clip. It's a genius design tht works very well, with a cantilever design, you pull it apart and it scissors open, and clamp it down on a piece of clothing to keep it all from tugging. This clip is EXTREMELY important, because without it, the earphones would pull down from the weight of the cord and cause the earpieces to pop out of your ears more often than they might.
I'm overall unsatisfied with these and will continue my quest. My favorite so far have been the Philips ear loop headphones with iOS remote, they have been sold out on Amazon for over a month tho, otherwise I'd buy another pair of those and return these.