Saturday, March 3, 2007

Sennheiser CX300 review

My first in-ear earphones was the Sony NC-11 which I returned because while they sounded great, they tend to channel echos to the ears every time the cable touches my shirt. Since then I stayed clear off in-ear phones until I finally bought the EX71. They were the best budget earphones back then without resorting to professional graded earphones from Shure and Etymotic. After the EX71 broke I went through a number of earphones looking for a replacement, including the Shure e2c (which lasted me about a year before it too broke).

The Sennheiser CX300, at less than £20 if you shop around wisely, is a nice in-ear passive noise isolation earphones that Jennifer ordered to replaced her own broken EX71. These are canal phones that goes into the canal of your ears, sealing outside noise so that you can enjoy your music in peace. It works just as well as the EX71 when using it on the Tube, sealing out noisy passengers and rattling trains. Because the drivers are inside and because of the lack of ambient noise, those using in-ear phones like the CX300 are capable of enjoying their music with less volume.

The CX300 is as comfy as the EX71, with Sennheiser (like Sony and Shure) providing different caps for different ear size. The caps are silicon made and soft like the ones provided by Sony. They fit in snugly into the ear and we had no problems with the earphones accidentally falling out. While not as tough as the e2c, the CX300 does seem to be capable of withstanding most abuses provided you treat it well. The sound quality is not as great as the e2c, but at the price you can't really complain. It is still much much better than stock earbuds that are provided with your digital music player and is capable of providing so much more detail and warmth than a £5 set. Bass, mids and trebles are all good.

We like the CX300. It is available in black, grey and white and retails for £30. Shop around and you will definitely save some money (mymemory is one such suggestion). The only issue I had with the CX300 is the rather thin cords which tangles easily and may also break if it is tugged with force, as well as some microphonic issues (echos when caable rubs against something).


Bass-driven stereo sound
Frequency response: 18Hz - 21kHz
Cable length: Asymmetrical, L: 170 mm; R: 510 mm, (850 mm divider to plug)
Impedance: 16 Ohm
Sound pressure level (SPL): 112 dB (1 kHz, 1 Vrms)
Jack plug: 3.5 mm stereo (angled)
Ear coupling: intraaural (ear canal fit)
Transducer principle: dynamic, open

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