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17 of 19 people found the following review helpful
Based on some of the reviews on this product, and the image above, I think Phillips may have listened to complaints and made some changes to the earbuds. The pair I just bought came with an entirely different set of cups than the ones pictured above, considerably narrower at the end that goes into the ear. The ones pictured here came as a separate pair of cups, unattached to the earbuds. So, it looks like Phillips made some adjustments to help them fit better for most people. I've only been using mine for the last day, but I wore them during my commute to work (which involves a fair amount of walking) and didn't have any trouble with them falling out.

The sound is satisfactory, and a bit better than I expected from a $20 pair of earbuds. I use them with my iPod and noticed that with the Phillips earbuds I had to reduce the volume from the level I used with the original iPod earbuds. As for the virtual-surround, the sound is somewhat richer than with the iPod earbuds, and more external noise is cancelled out.

My only complaint is the chord is designed to be worn around the neck, but works best if you wear your player on your left. I tend to wear mine on the right. A slight adustment, with the chord crossing in front of me took care of that, so I didn't experience any tugging.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
on April 6, 2007
I give these earbuds 5 stars compared to other brands in the same price range. I'm sure you could spend more money and get better sound, but for this price you won't find any better. The "surround sound" feature lives up to its billing. I've tried other earbuds and none can match the sound.

The earbuds I purchased came with two sets of inserts - one straight and one tapered - to achieve the level of comfort you're looking for. The tapered insert works great with my ears. They are comfortable and *never* fall out no matter how vigourous the motion. Even an incidental light tug on the cord doesn't dislodge the earbud.

So if you're looking for an inexpensive pair of earbuds that are comfortable and stay in your ear - this is what you should buy.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on February 8, 2007
(this is a reposting of my older review with some updates)

...........any logic behind the plethora of complaints about these buds falling out of people's ears. Obviously these people do not know how to properly use them. They are not to be worn like standard earbuds. These buds are designed to go directly into the ear canal, which means you have to push the tips snugly into the canal. These are the most comfortable earphones I have ever had, and I've never once had either one fall out. They took a little getting used to at first, admittingly, but now I usually can't even tell I'm wearing them. They also don't start to hurt after extended periods of use, unlike regular earbuds. They come with two different sizes of silicon tips. I think most people will probably find the smaller tips to work better, but experiment on your own (just don't lose them). The cords are asymetrical, which really doesn't bother me. The short one goes in the left ear, and the longer one is meant to be worn around the back of the neck to the right ear. I usually just wear it around the front, though, however ridiculous it may look.

The sound is simply amazing--very crisp, clear, and well balanced. The bass seemed weak at first, but that was only because I was coming from earbuds that had very strong, almost overpowering bass. These Philips buds do have nice bass, but they also allow the midrange and treble to sound clearly as they should. If your player has an equalizer, you can further tweak them to suit your taste. These buds are powerful too - you will find that you don't have to have the volume up as high as you do with other phones/buds. Also very durable! I've accidentally stepped on them numerous times and still they work fine (and I'm by no means a small person). Last summer I tried a pair of $40 Sony in-canal buds which were promptly returned to the store - these Philips were way better in terms of sound and comfort.

The only major downfall is the supplied case. I will agree with other reviewers that it is moronically designed. Though a Masters in engineering would be helpful, I was able to get it figured out after playing with it awhile. Another fault is the lack of replacement silicon tips if you should happen to lose any. But I've had mine since May 2006 and I have yet to lose any of the four tips.

These earbuds may look uncomfortable at first glance, but don't let that or the many negative reviews dissuade you. I think I can safely say that most of the negatives come from people who (a) don't have them, (b) think they look ugly/uncomfortable, or (c) don't know how to use them. They sound wonderful, are very affordable, and are very comfortable once you learn how to wear them properly.

UPDATE REGARDING THE CASE:
It seems the people at Phillips must be reading these reviews, as the case has been redesigned. I picked up a new pair of these at my local Wal-Mart today after losing the pair I'd had for more than a year, and the case is now a much more user-friendly zipper pouch. The black earbuds must not sell as well, as these all still had the old case, but all of the white ones on the shelf were in a redesigned package with the new case. Hats off to Phillips for listening to their customers!!!!!
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8 of 10 people found the following review helpful
on September 18, 2006
Not since the development of the original Sony Walkman has personal music equipment garnered the attention that MP3 players and I-Pods have in the last 5 years.

Increases in technology along with freefalling prices in RAM have made high capacity MP3 players and I-Pods available for the first time to hold an adequate quantity of music at very high quality.

In the past, people had to give up sound quality for quantity, as MP3 players were simply incapable of holding enough memory to make it worth while.

Well, that has changed, and with it, has the quality of headphones available for these little powerhouses of music.

One of the most suprising on the block are the Philips HE592 Surround Sound Ear Buds.

Sitting at a price point of approx 15 to 16 dollars next to the other entry level earbuds at your local Wal-Mart or Amazon, these earbuds deliver a performance that far outstrips their dimunitive price.

The Surround Sound, technology is developed by creating a chamber within the earbud in which sound is fired out the back of the earbud, and then ducted back through small chambers on the side of the bud.

Don't ask me how this is supposed to work because it is beyond me, but the proof is in the difference in sound quality when this outward facing port is blocked by your finger, compared to when it is unblocked. The difference is astounding!!!! It's almost worth $20 bucks alone to sit with your fingers and block and unblock the outward firing ports to hear the "difference".

Because these earbuds rely heavily on placement within the ear canal to function at full performance, two sets of silicon sleeves (a small set, on by default, and an extra "wider" sleve for larger ear canals) are provided to help ensure proper fit.

When properly fitted, these earbuds deliver incredibly high fidelity reproduction. Although a bit light on the bass response (which is to be expected from "buds"), the mid range of these phones is phenomenal.

Due to the design of these buds, the drivers are smaller and thus require less power to provide the same volume level, thus can go "louder" than competitors phones at the same power level. This allows the phones to be operated at a lower volume level during listening, thus saving on your battery life. The smaller drivers must also help contribute to their lower price point.

When properly EQ'ed, these phones bring out subtlties in your music that you never knew was there.

One must mention however that these phones are specialty phones and not adequate for every listening condition.

1. For maximum benefit, these phones should be enjoyed in a quiet environment so that the "redirected" sound can properly be reflected back in to your ear. Outside noise such as lawnmowers, aircraft noise and other background noise will adversely affect sound quality. This is due to the fact that outside noise will interfere with the reflected sound indirectly entering the ear through the open ducts in the side. Use of these phones in environments with high background noise is therefore not recommended.

2. Since a proper fit is mandatory for maximum enjoyment, these phones are not adequate for any heavy workouts as movement may jar the phones within the ear canal and disrupt the acoustics.

One should keep these points in mind when considering your purchase. However at $20.00 or less it is a small investment for a pair of phones that will be broken out when the music is the most important thing going on at the time.

Others have complained on their poor fit, and this reviewer nearly returned them for a refund due to his initial impressions on the fit. However, patience and experimentation should equate to an adequate fit and your ears should adapt. By experimenting in placement and trying out both sets of sleeves, I was able to find a placement that was much more comfortable than standard ear buds and provided maximum enjoyment. After two weeks I must say it was well worth the wait. I therefore urge any purchasers of these phones to actually overcome your initial perceived problems with fit, and patiently experiment. It is well worth the effort.

Some other shortcomings of the phones are the asymetric design which leads to the left earbud wire being much shorter than the right. The idea in asymetric wires is that the right wire is redirected around the back of the neck. While in theory this may be a good idea, in execution it leads to the left bud bearing the full weight of the earphone wire, which tends to pull the left bud out of position. This also helps contribute to the earbud's inadequacy in conditions where there is a lot of physical movement of the head. The asymetric wire design is one of the few real shortcomings of this pair, and I would like to see another model released with more traditional symetric wiring.

The silicon and plastic case that holds the phones is also needlessly complex, and much harder to use than it should be. I have relegated myself to using the case simply to hold the spare sleeves, and use a plastic bag to hold the phones, or simply wrap the phones around my Sansa MP3 player when not in use.

While these shortcomings are valid, for less than $20.00 this should not cause the listener to pass up on these phones.

When the right conditions exist, the sound from these phones will actually encourage you to find a nice quiet spot to relax and enjoy your music in ways that you never thought possible.

If you are working out, or mowing the lawn, choose another product. However, if you are sitting or lying down in a nice quiet environment, be prepared for a musical experience that you never thought possible for a sub $20 dollar pair of earbuds.

At $20 bucks a pop, you can easily afford a general use set of buds, while reserving these for those "special times".

Kudos to Phillips for developing a product that when used in it's intended environment delivers an experience unmatched to anything else in it's price point.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on August 10, 2006
I picked these up at a local store along with a pair of JVC earbuds to compare them to- (similar to the sony mdr brand) The Philips had a much better midrange response and, in my opinion, much more potential, with the aid of an EQ, to be a fantastic pair of inexpensive headphones. While the natural (flat) frequency response of the earphones is a bit 'pronounced' in the midrange, I found that by using the EQ in "itunes" to bring the mids down and the highs and lows up just a bit -they transformed into a -beautiful- sounding pair of headphones.. for both rock and classical. I used a pair of Sennheiser Studio Monitors ($275) as a reference source to compare the earbuds to. Also, these are P E R F E C T for listening to while your head is on a pillow :) They are flat on the outside, and Very comfortable sitting inside your ears.. so if you sleep on your side, you cant even tell they are there. The HE592s are incredibly efficient - needing far less energy to push the drivers (equating to lower volume settings on your personal player and slightly extended battery life :) -I recently listened to a pair of ipod sony earbuds and couldn't believe how low the volume was with the setting at full on the player... -they just couldn't get loud enough and the sound was very tinny..

These are Much better and a deliver a lot more bang for the $$ in terms of prolonged listening.

In short, so long as you have a few EQ options with your mp3 player, you will enjoy great sounding audio while smiling about only having spent about $20 :) -I hope this was helpful. Happy listening!

Jesse (Very picky Audio engineer. Seattle, WA)
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on February 3, 2006
As an avid music listener, I love these. Here is why:

They fit perfectly in my ear, unlike the standard-issue iPod earbuds that just kind of sit in the opening of your ear, these nestle snugly into the canal, creating a great seal that blocks out a good deal of noise. From what I gather, this is pretty subjective from wearer to wearer, but after wearing them for extended periods of time, I have no complaints.

I am a student and always study while listening to music, so i really appreciate the noise reduction to block out some of the Starbucks buzz.

The surround sound is a really innovative and pleasing feature. I was skeptical at first, but was pleasantly surprised - the product lives up to the hype on the package, very impressive virtual surround sound. The sound quality is also quite nice, especially in high volumes.

They look sleek, but not flashy; Love the around-the-neck style chord; and the case eh...that's where the fifth star went - it is a good concept, but it needs some refinement: no protective quality, earbuds hard to get in and out.

Note: You may care to know that the entire chord (from earbud to tip) is white, unlike the above picture shows.

Overall, a really nice set of earbuds for a pretty reasonable price - go for it.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on April 4, 2007
I bought these earbuds tonight and I immediately noticed a vast difference in sound quality between these and my previous ipod ear set. I was tempted to buy the Philips Noise Canceling earbuds, but decided on this pair for convenience and portability. Plus, living in a large, urban center, such as NYC, I didn't want to completely block out sound, due to safety etc.

Jazz and melodic music sounds clean and crisp! My only complaint is the asymmetrical design (one cord is shorter than the other and rests behind your neck). I'm not quite comfortable with it, but I think it will grow on me. I like the idea of having the cord behind my neck and not hanging in front. Also, the cord case and extra ear cups are a little tricky to keep all together. I suggest keeing the extra pair at home or in a desk, so as not to lose it while traveling or on the road.

I bought these over the Sony headphones, because of the quality of the Philips company. Great value, too. Better than I expected. I do not need to turn the volume either.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on February 8, 2006
Yes the silicone covers for the headphones are easy to lose.

But there is a solution!

Though I have not found the covers sold seperately from the headphones, I came up with a little solution.

Crazy Glue.

I kid you not.

One little squeeze on the covers, place on ear buds, twist, and let dry.

Those little buggers will not fall off.

True story.

The sound itself is not bad - not as much bass as I had hoped, but incredible, loud sound none-the-less. I got my girlfriend to buy these, as I loved the quality, and I bought myself a second pair, glueing the large covers on one set, and the small ones on the other...They work wonderfully.

Has no one though of this before?

Good deal for the price. great sound, comfortable fit, and a harmonious experience throughout. Go ahead. Get them. They ain't half bad.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
on February 25, 2007
I have found these ear buds, the Philips HE592 series to be a very comfortable selection and overall I am quiet satisfied with both the sound and durability. The end result is that I would give these ear buds between 4 and 4.5 stars (out of a possible 5).

The story of how I ended up buying these ear buds goes something like this, note that I was looking for a suitable replacement for the stock ear buds that came with my Blue iPod Nano 4GB player which I also enjoy very much. See, I originally was not going to purchase this item because the sales person at my local Wal-Mart store warned me against this item because he has a pair and did not like the sound quality. Being the independent kinda guy that I am I figured that I would research this item and make an educated decision of my own accord before just not buying them. After a couple of weeks I stopped by my local Best Buy. This is when it got very interesting because the audio department rep told me not to buy these either because she prefers the Sony's much more than these for her iPod. Before I knew it I had another young sales rep of about 19 or 20 backing up her story telling me that she is an "audio professional" and that I "should really listen to her professional opinion". Before long one of the "managers", a very dorky guy (I work in IT and do know dorky but he took the cake during this particular segue) in his mid to late 40's joined in this anti-Philips protest so just to (a) be a jerk, and (b) prove that I am not a sheep I went ahead and bought them even though three employees were insisting that I am wasting my $15. For $15 plus tax these ear buds turned out to be an excellent selection despite the opinion of all these "professionals".

The Pros

1. They really do stay in your ear and quiet comfortably too. You need to make sure that you are using the correct set of silicon cups and that they are firmly yet gently pressed into your ear canal. This is how they work by design.

2. The sound is very rich and deep; though the bass is not perfect using the EQ on your iPod can do wonders for this unit.

3. The plug is plated with 24K gold, a nice touch for a $15 item.

4. You get a case (see issues below) and an additional set of silicon cups. Having these extras included is a great value for the price!

5. Though these ear buds are not officially Noise Cancelling; I find that they do in fact provide a decent level of Noise Reduction.

6. Durable Construction is one of my favorite things about these; since I detest the case I keep them in my pockets in my winter coat and throw them around a lot. They are really built tough!

The Cons

1. The Bass is a bit shabby but overall the sound quality gets 4.5 out of 5 stars. The EQ on the iPod tends to compensate for this to some degree though it is not perfect. I have heard however that these produce better sound than both the Sony and Bose ear buds which are dramatically more costly.

2. The left side cord is approx. 4 times shorter than the right side counterpart which is by design. This is supposed to make wearing it behind the head easier but I find it an annoyance. Philips, please make the cord length the same with the next revision of this product!

3. The case is not all that great and the other set of silicon ear tips regularly falls out hence the reason why I don't use the case. Go figure, It's a $15 product in which the core unit is more than decent!

Overall (kinda like Jerry's final thought)

If you're still contemplating buying these than please don't be a sheep and go out right now and buy yourself a pair or even better order them online through Amazon today! If I would have listened to everyone's opinion I would have lost out on this great product! So buy them then go home and take care of yourself and each other :-)
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on February 19, 2006
I must admit I was not sure how the "in the ear" design really worked until I got these for my iPod. This is my first pair of earbuds which are the "in your ear" design. The sound was nice and I liked the "surround sound" effects, things were clear so on that I give them 4 stars (could have used more bass effects-- and I don't listen to Rap)-- but more 80's music, pop and such.

However, I don't think I have "small ear cannels" but apparently I must! Although I sort of thought it was the "cableing system". There is this little piece of rubber hanging just below your left ear with this LONG CORD going to the earbud in your right ear. So when I moved it would "tug" at the earbud in that ear it it would work it's way out and then "hang" on my ear- near my earlobe! Sort of The place that "old fashioned" ear buds sit!

I did purchase these before reading the reviews here! If I had, I may have not purchased them. I bought them yesterday, and tried them then and today, now my ears are HURTING from my trying to "work with them" to make them fit. As I said the popping out was mostly on my left side, so that's probably due to the cableing design, but maybe I do have smaller ears-- could be a combination effect.

Needless to say, I'm not going to be using them anymore. Now need my ears to "heal" a bit to not be so tender! Now wondering if ALL "in-the-ear" systems will do the same thing? Maybe some with FOAM inserts into the cannel instead of the silicone maybe better?

Ouchie is all I can say about how these fit! :(
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