Cheap earbuds that outperform $1,000 alternatives

I am really pleasantly surprised by how good those ubiquitous cheap green Bluetooth earbuds can be. Usually referred to as QY7 regardless of the brand name.

I have two pairs. One (which happened to be “Ruibility” brand, purchased from Amazon) has been flawless, came in a nice box with some extra rubber ear doodads (gaskets? heh), and simply says “Power on. Connected.” when started.

The second was a refurb from iTechDeals, I think the brand name was “QCY”. It’s an older version number. It sometimes drops audio or stutters even when right next to my phone. It came in a plastic bag with nothing else, and says “Welcome to use intelligent voice control headphone. The connected.” when I power them on. (There is no “voice control” feature.)

Physically they are comfortable (to me anyway), and sound surprisingly good for their price. And wireless earbuds are surprisingly freeing; if only they could do away with the cable between them too. :smiley:

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I don’t know how anybody can stand in-ear headphones! Maybe I have only ever tried awful ones, but they just seem like an engineering headache. Sure, it is possible to make good ones, but even this seems to be a solution looking for a problem.

A lot of over-the-ear headphones are uncomfortable when you have a big head and wear glasses. I’ve tried some truly horrible earbuds but some are quite comfortable for extended periods.

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I got a couple pairs of these about 2 years ago and I"m still liking them - Sony MDR-J10.

The cords haven’t pulled out or broken and they sound (to me) 100 times better than my old Phillips ones (which I thought were ok, but not great). There is also a little (bass?) port at the back of each one - I’m sure someone has done a little work on design here (Sony can be trusted for some things!).
I can easily block out unwanted babble as they perform well at high volume (some earbuds I have owned were so weak they were downright annoying).

They do sit well over your ear but they get in the way if you want to wear sunglasses at the same time.
The ones on amazon are going for 49.99, but I paid around US$9 for a pair from China. I doubt there is any difference (even though I have had disappointing experiences with several Chinese-made products in the past).
Eventually, I got out the Dremel and cut off the loops at the top to see if they would stay in my ears - they sit in there just fine without having to be jammed in (I’m not a runner!) and the sound is just as good.

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