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Sennheiser CX 400 II Precision Noise Isolating Ear-canal Phones with Integrated Volume Control - Black
Sennheiser CX 400 II Precision Noise Isolating Ear-canal Phones with Integrated Volume Control - Black
Price: 64.95

13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Looking for new earphones? You have my sympathy..., 22 May 2012
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
OK, let's get one thing clear from the start. If you're after a pair of in-ear, noise isolating, superb all-round sound reproduction earphones for <40, you simply can't look past Sennheiser's CX300 II or CX 400 II series (if independent volume control isn't essential to you, plumb for the cheaper former). Believe me, over the last 5 years I've been through my share of different makes and models and always grudgingly return to Sennheiser; in this price bracket, the likes of Sony, SkullCandy, Radiopaq, Panasonic, et al just don't come close.

Why grudgingly? They simply don't last.

Mind you, there are a hell of a lot of fakes on the market (***only ever buy from directly***) so be cautious of reviews mentioning faults/sound degradation after only a few weeks. However, any comments referencing left/right phones failing after 6 months will generally be bang on the money.

In the last 2 years I've been through one pair of CX 300 IIs and two pairs of CX 400 IIs. Each has developed the same problem after roughly 6-9 months of 1-2 hrs usage per day max. First, the sound becomes muffled in both phones, switching between stereo/mono. Then everything mysteriously returns to apparent normality for a few days. And then the right earphone fails. Every single time. And as much as I try to convince myself that the sudden imbalance to the left phone has always been present, my heart realises my Sennheisers are once again toast.

So why haven't I given up on them? Why am I back with a third set of CX 400 IIs in 18 months? Several reasons: the audio quality and isolation (used on public transport, car journeys, planes, walking near traffic) really are so superior to anyone else, switching to another brand would be to cut off one's nose to spite one's face. Also, as fellow Blackberry owners with sensitive hearing may empathise with, the minimum volume within the Music Player is far too loud when trying to relax in a quiet area, so earphones with independent volume control are an absolute must; there are *very few* if any alternatives with said function equal to the CX 400 II.

Finally, there's the 2 year warranty. Ah, you see, this is why it is extremely important that you purchase from an authorised seller. Because when your CX 400 II's perish, and they will, you're entitled to a replacement pair/refund. No quibbles.

These earphones are wonderful when they work and as such all the more annoying when they oh-so-predictably fail. From experience, their sound quality, noise isolation and exterior build aren't surpassed at this price point. So, go ahead, order them, you'll more than likely adore them. Just keep that warranty handy.
Comment Comments (2) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Apr 3, 2014 8:10 PM BST

Bang Bang It's Reeves & Mortimer [DVD]
Bang Bang It's Reeves & Mortimer [DVD]
Dvd ~ Vic Reeves
Price: 4.74

4.0 out of 5 stars On the whole, a lot of Fun..., 10 Oct 2010
Often described by fans as the surrealist double act's finest work, Bang Bang - It's Reeves & Mortimer is certainly a comedy gem. But be warned: it's a rough diamond that won't necessarily appeal to fans of "Shooting Stars" or even "Smell of".

On whether or not this is indeed Vic and Bob's greatest achievement, I'm not sure I agree. It's definitely underrated by some but certain criticisms of the series aren't entirely unwarranted. The studio pieces, arguably the highlights of "Smell of", feel rushed and forced here, with too many dissolving into cheap fart gags or half-baked pan fights. I feel the series' stand-out episode is the fifth one wherein a dearth of studio banter is notable. As a result, the episode flows nicely with each sketch filtering into the next without the hosts' interruptions.

And, in my opinion at least, it's the filmed sketches that make this DVD worth buying, the majority of which more than make up for the lacklustre studio gags. From the lunacy of the Car Door blokes to the adventures of Reeves' finest comedy creation, Tom Fun and his best friend Derek, these pieces keep the laughs coming with an array of off-the-wall characters whilst some are even ahead of their time (see The Club).

An honourable mention goes to the opening musical numbers which, whilst (again) not reaching the originality heights of "Smell of", are thoroughly enjoyable and linger long in the memory.

At the end of the day, it comes down to this: if you're a Reeves & Mortimer nut you'll already have this DVD, in which case this review will be irrelevant to you. If, however, you've enjoyed some of the duo's other work and are wavering over purchasing this one due to the mixed reaction then I say go for it (especially at this price). But be prepared that this may just be a step too far, though you're sure to at least have a bit of fun along the way!

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