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17 of 18 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Shure Bet
One of the big questions in life is: How is it worthwhile and/or acceptable to listen to music on these.

If you love your music then give it the respect it deserves. Pay the price for a pair of headphones and rediscover/discover the true sound of your music.

That leaves you with two basic choices: in-ear or over-ear.

IE headphones are the...
Published 12 months ago by Adam Finn

versus
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Great sound until they broke after 1 month
These are a great upgrade for your iPod if you save your music at lossless or highest bit rate. I say this because they will show up inferior lower quality recording levels.

The reason they do not get five stars is the fit, which takes some getting used to. Although there is a plethora of different fittings, personally I found there is not one, which fits my...
Published 18 months ago by Tony


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17 of 18 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Shure Bet, 3 July 2013
By 
Adam Finn (London, UK) - See all my reviews
(TOP 500 REVIEWER)    (REAL NAME)   
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
One of the big questions in life is: How is it worthwhile and/or acceptable to listen to music on these.

If you love your music then give it the respect it deserves. Pay the price for a pair of headphones and rediscover/discover the true sound of your music.

That leaves you with two basic choices: in-ear or over-ear.

IE headphones are the best noise-cancelling option; that is, you will not hear anything else. I cannot emphasise how important this is for the sound quality. The air-tight seal will allow you to play the music at a comfortable volume and improves the bass response. Altruistically, this also means that much less noise is getting out allowing you to listen to your guilty pleasures with nothing more than a cheeky smirk suggesting the truth. Whilst you may be able to fit more/bigger drivers in the OE units, the supremacy of the in-ear clarity for the low end is key.

And for practicality, IEs win hands-down. They don't fall out of your ears when you are running or working out, and they are aesthetically more subtle and, in my opinion, less geeky looking.

Shure are mainly concerned with the production of professional studio equipment (i.e. monitors, microphones, mixers and the like). Their foray into consumer electronics stemmed from the natural evolution of what they called 'monitors' mainly designed for the use of DJs in clubs and producers in noisy studios into earphones for the noisy commuters.

Over the last few years i have tried these: Klipsch Image S4 Headphones, Monster Cable Turbine PRO High Performance Multilingual In-Ear Speakers - Copper, Sennheiser CX 300 II Precision Noise Isolating Ear-canal Phones - Black, Beats by Dr. Dre In Ear Tour Headphones with Control Talk for Apple Devices - Black/Red.

And I have used the Shure 215s (previously E2Cs), 315s and 535s.

For value for money and sound quality i think the best choice is the Shure 215s and if money is not an issue- get two sets of 215s (maybe one pair for exercise and one for home and travel usage).

I would have to say its very difficult to tell much difference between the 215s and the 315s but the triple-driver system of the 535s does result in a much more powerful bass punch. Unfortunately this is at the expense of the high end; which can at times become very overwhelmed with complex acoustic and rock music, coming across as tinny. It is with that in mind that I feel the sharp increase in price to the 535s would not be justified if you are listening to a lot high end music, whereas if you primarily listen to deep electronic music you may notice an improvement in quality. But worth the 4X price increase? I don't think so.

Here are some pointers:

- Shures come with foam and plastic buds, each in three different sizes, its pretty important that you spend a while trying each and finding out which suits you best. At first this is not going to feel natural at all, especially if you have never used in-ear headphones before. Give it some time and within a week it will feel right. Also, note that the wire is designed to rest over your ear. Again this is unnatural at first but in time it will feel much more supportive and you will wonder why you ever had the wire tugging down by your earlobe before. My preference is the plastic buds as i sweat alot when i run (as a note these earphones are just amazing for running (a) because they never fall out and stay solidly air-tight (b) because these bass loving headphones work just a treat with trance music and any electronic music (my choice of running music)).

- The actual units are removable from the wire if you pull lightly in a perpendicular direction away from the wire. This is really important. If you are outside the warranty and the wire breaks you don't need to pay for the whole set - you may be able to find them online or just call the Shure service department and they will send you out one for roughly 30. The wire is not specific to the model. As a side note, I have never had a technical issue with the units, it has always been the wire. In the past it was often the curvature around the ear that wore away but Shure have since reinforced this area.

- Treat third party sellers with caution. Due to the high-end nature of the product Shure have brought together an anti-counterfeiting initiative; this has been in response to a wave of fakes that are flooding the internet. Tell-tale signs are the combination of 'Chinese Warehouses' and a substantial reduction from the RRP. Remember if it seems to good to be true, then it probably isn't. Check Shure's website for an authorised distirbutor list - Shure will deal with these warranty claims directly - or take a product that is fulfilled by Amazon. The issue with third party sellers on Amazon is that they may be unable to verify where they get their stock from. That is to say that they are not purchasing via known wholesalers of Shure's and so they don't know if they are grey imports. This doesn't necessarily mean that you are completely without a warranty just that you will need to go back to the seller. They should have no issue replacing your earphones if they are purchasing via authorised distribution channels. Keep all receipts for the warranty.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Great sound until they broke after 1 month, 28 Dec 2012
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These are a great upgrade for your iPod if you save your music at lossless or highest bit rate. I say this because they will show up inferior lower quality recording levels.

The reason they do not get five stars is the fit, which takes some getting used to. Although there is a plethora of different fittings, personally I found there is not one, which fits my ears efficiently without causing discomfort, I.e. the medium soft foam is comfortable but let's in to much sound and therefore reduces the sound experience. The larger soft foam gives superb isolation and sound quality but causes pain with prolonged listening (two albums or more).

Furthermore the over ear wire fitting is initially complicated to get right and some might find uncomfortable but if you persevere the benefit of quality sound is a worthy reward if you can find a fit that does not hurt your ears.

NEGATIVE FOLLOW UP
My cable broke / has a fault by the jack plug one month after receiving them. I have treated them like a new born child, never coiling, twisting or folding the cable in any way but the wire to the left speaker cuts out when you touch the cable next to the jack plug.

I cannot believe the ridiculous lack of build quality of 40+ cable (replacement cost).
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74 of 81 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Mindblowing, 23 July 2011
I have always been a huge fan on Shure since I first purchased my E4C's a few years back.

Even the E4C's with their single drivers blew me away, but as was frequently reported, the cable (on the E4C's) would wear away and the connection would break - this happened twice, but fortunately both times Shure were absolutely fantastic. I called their customer helpline, explained the problem and the helpful person on the other end simply said to pop them in the post and they'd send out a new pair. No arguments, no excuses or backtracking. Both times they complied willingly. In fact the second time round they replaced them with the new upgraded model SE310's.

Based on my fantastic experience with Shure, once the connection broke again on my SE310's a couple of years later [this time outside my warranty period], I decided to stick with them and upgrade to the SE535. The design of these alone suggests that Shure realised that in previous models they'd been sending out rather too many free replacements - so the SE535's have kevlar coated DETACHABLE cables. Genius. This means that when I fall outside of my warranty period again, IF the cable busts, I'll be able to get a replacement cable instead of forking out what is admittedly enough hard cash to give most people a nasty chin bruise as it thuds to the floor. (Most people who find out how much I spent on earphones do think I'm absolutely mental... BUT they haven't actually HEARD how amazing music CAN sound, which is exactly what these earphones achieve)

So this brings me nicely onto my next and most important part of my review; the sound... This, after all my other waffly guff, is what you are really here to read about.
Let me put it this way, I regularly commute on the tube (the subway trains) in London which is generally rather a noisy affair. Loud clattery trains, and unnecessarily loud tannoy announcements.
Many of the 'iPhone headphone' wearing parade get around this problem by whacking up the volume so loud you wonder why there aren't spots of blood dribbling out their lug-holes. It also means that all the 'non head/earphone-wearing' crowd around them are subjected to what sounds like a distant train transporting a cage of angry insects.

This is NOT the case with the SE535's. Of the wide selection of ear fittings you're given, I personally like to use the foam earplug variety. When these are snugly fitted, I could play the loudest angriest most 'GRRRRRR!' metal song EVER and, as far as everyone around me is concerned, I could be listening to "4 minutes 33" by John Cage.
Further to this, selfishly ignoring the (lack of) experience of others around me, MY OWN experience is phenomenal.

I hear basically NOTHING but the music. I will be stood on the tube platform and a tube train will come screaming into the station with all its clatter, horrible metal-on-metal screeching noises and some tedious platform announcement booming away overhead and I am able to close my eyes and pretend that I am standing in the same room as the song artist(s). The sound is SO clear, the frequency response is awesome.

On the bass level, it's actually quite surreal because when you turn it up a bit on a bassy song, it sounds like you're stood near some über-watt mega subwoofer where normally you would FEEL the bass waves rippling through your body. Unfortunately Shure's current earphone technology doesn't yet provide the physical body-wide bass ripply experience other than in your ears, but my goodness it's awesome.

In short: Amazing. Buy them. Eat baked beans every day for a month with the small change left from your paycheck. At least your ears won't be bleeding.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Well worth it!, 24 Mar 2013
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I bought these as an upgrade to the standard 30-50 in-ear headphones I've been buying for the past few years, like sennheiser CX400, 500 etc and the RHA earbuds.

The se215s are an amazing upgrade in terms of build quality - I say this even though the first set I was sent came with a bad cable. Very robust so far (this contrasts with some of the reviews I've read of these emanating from the US) and the soft carry case is way better than sennheiser or others supply. Hopefully they will last more than the one year I have got out of every other brand....

The sound of these is a revelation! With the foam earbuds (and also to a good degree with the latex ones) there is excellent passive noise isolation: it is as good as having very good quality earplugs in and the behind-the-ear cable routing really minimises the cable-rub noise of other in-ear designs.

The sound is extremely well balanced (for comparison I find RHAs just a little bit tinny, and most sennheisers a bit on the bassy side) and the detail is great - I'm hearing stuff in my old music that I just hadn't picked out before either on phones or on speakers.

They are a real step up from the 30-50 price range and I would recommend to anyone.

One note of caution - I find these very very comfortable indeed (as comfortable as sennheiser cx400II, my previous favourite fit), but I can imagine that if my ears were a different shape, they might not be so ideal. They are very configurable (e.g. angle of cable, form of wire behind ear, cable exit position in relation to ear etc....) but they are bulkier than standard earbuds and I can imagine that they won't work for some....
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic value, incredible sound quality!, 4 Dec 2012
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I bought these as my first set of decent amarture driver earphones and have not been disappointed.

initially they are fiddly to get into your ear but once the action becomes natural the fit is snug, fitted and comfortable for all day listening if you really wanted to!

sound is crisp, sharp and loud. the bass is not on par with headphones but for earphones it is shockingly 'thumping'! the cable is long and very solid, I have given them a lot of abuse and the cable and jack show no sign of damage or wearing at all! and they are replaceable if the time arises!

could not be happier with these earphones, I am a Shure convert and wont be going back to anything else....even if it has a rapper on the box!!
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33 of 37 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Goose pimple inducing, 12 Jan 2011
By 
music lover (rugby, warwickshire United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
These are seriously good. It is like having a completely new collection of cd's. I have hooked these up to my old Sony NWHD5 and transferred music onto it at 352kbs atrac3. No sound enhancement switched on at the player. The 30 minute daily walk to work is a real pleasure, the fit is superb with the foam tips that were in place, I could not hear any external noises. They do take a bit of getting used to to wear them, (they are twisted into the ear), but that will come with practise.
Pure music. I'm hearing notes and sounds I have not heard before, on Bill Perry live in NYC it's as though I am in the room.
OK they are expensive, but you get what you pay for. The cable is like nothing else, the units feel solid and like they will last a lifetime.
I have had Bose in ear units and numerous Sony sets, nothing touches these.
Go on, you are only here once, I'm glad I bought them.
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68 of 77 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars At this price, they really shouldn't sound this good, 14 Sep 2011
I previously owned a paid of Denon AH-C551 earphones, until the right earbud died (I opened up the unit to see if the problem was fixable, but it was just too fiddly for my liking). I loved my Denons - Despite the top end being a bit unrefined (although this softens as the drivers burn in) - They were great value for money.

However, when they died, I decided that these Shure SE215s were the way to go - And I couldn't be happier at the decision I made. I looked at a great many earphones up to a price of around 130, but plumped for these in the end because they were widely reviewed as having all of Shure's well known qualities (superb build quality, excellent sound isolation, a surprisingly wide soundscape and a pleasant warm tonality), but at a price point well below Shure's top end models.

I can tell you that the reviews do not lie. Despite being single, dynamic driver models, they lack nothing in terms of clarity and separation, either - Which is very impressive given the warm tone and decent bass response given. Incidentally, in terms of the bass - Those of you who are total bass heads probably won't want to invest in these, and would probably be better off going for the (in my opinion horribly unbalanced) Bose or Beats by Dr Dre models. If I had to put the bass response of the Shures on a scale, it would fall at a happy balance between the bass-heavy Bose, and the bass-light Sennheiser in-ears.

In terms of what music they have been tested with - I have listened to a wide range (even wider than usual with the purpose of writing this review). To give but a few examples:

Johnny Cash - Hurt
I happen to love Cash's cover of Nine Inch Nails' classic anyway, but I have to say that this was an eye-opener - You can clearly hear every breath, finger movement on the guitar, and the occasional less-than-clean note played therein. The sheer amount of detail that I had never heard before was astonishing. When the accompaniment kicks in towards the end the track simply soars.

Edward Grieg - Piano Concerto in A Minor
Again, its the clarity and sense of space that are obvious here. The keys on the piano ring out as if it were right in the room with you, and the orchestral accompaniment is clear but never overwhelming as can happen with some dynamic driver based earphones where one frequency sort of "drowns out" the others

Metallica - Call of Ktulu (from S&M)
This is a particularly tricky one as it combines rock and classical music together, which can often get rather muddy (again, especially on dynamic driver earphones). The Shures dealt with the piece extremely well, I feel. The track possibly lacked a slight amount of attack at the top end for the strings to really "sing" over the guitars and drums, but only when compared to multi-driver armature earphones. The clarity was still there, and the bass from the drums and guitars was impressive - Full and powerful without being overly "boomy"

Maroon 5 - Misery
To cover the pop bases I decided to listen to Maroon 5, and the 215s once again excelled here. The vast majority of what we listen to in pop music is squarely in the mid-range, and the detail was superb, and that warm tone was still there.

The fit on these once you get the right sleeves, and you get used to the ear hooks, is exceptional (for me at least). I can happily walk around, get on the train, even run to catch a train just about to leave, without these budging. The fit being so good, of course, means that the sound isolation is second to none, and surely helps with that bass response.

The build quality seems to be exactly the same as the higher priced Shure models I have seen, which is excellent. The high quality detachable cable is, at this price, particularly surprising (given that a replacement cable alone can cost upwards of 30). Its kevlar coating seems to keep it snag and tangle free (one persistent complaint I did have about the Denons), and noise transmission through the cable seems pretty low.

Overall, these are actually better than the Denons I so dearly loved for the past 3 years. I'm still sad to see them gone, but I feel these are more than just a replacement - They are, surprisingly given the price being fairly similar, actually a fairly significant upgrade. If you enjoy a wide range of music and not simply overly-bassy tracks, and want clarity and warmth at the same time, which isn't an easy thing to come by, I would thoroughly recommend these over and above any others I tried, including models from Ultimate-Ears, Sennheiser, Klipsch and Etymotic.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Awesome design and Amazing Sound, 11 July 2012
By 
Mrs. G. Mahendiran "Shanthi" (London, UK) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
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The Shure SE215 earphones sound amazing, the balance and dynamics make music come alive (including great bass response), and if such quality is what you are looking for, these are a great choice for this price range. Whilst reasonably expensive, I feel you get a lot for your money in terms of quality, materials and performance. I already have a good set of headphones and I was acutely aware that earphones are unlikely to produce the same comfort and performance. There were earphones that, according to reviews produced exceptional sound but I found the prices way way out of my budget. Within my price range, the Shure SE215 was the choice I made, and I am glad to say that it was the right one.

In terms of sound, they are excellent, I feel all frequency ranges are represented well and importantly in a balanced way. I really enjoy listening to all genres of music with these and whilst my headphones are better, they cost more and the difference is not as great as I initially expected it to be. Make no mistake, whatever Shure have done with these earphones, they have done it well.

An important aspect of earphones are the fit, and this has a dramatic effect on your enjoyment both in terms of sound quality and comfort. Shure have addressed these aspects together in the unique design. I was a little sceptical about how comfortable and secure they would be but upon trying them, I was able to wear them literally all day without any discomfort whatsoever and they did not come out once.

They were supplied with a range of earbuds, in small, medium and large, in both the traditional rubber and in a foam variety. I find the foam ones really great as they mould to your ear canal, whatever the shape. Most earphones I have had hurt my ears after a few hours but with the Shure SE215 combined with the foam tips, this problem is no longer experienced. They seem to exert minimal pressure to the ear canal whilst ensuring a good fit and this contributes to comfort and sound quality.

The design requires the cable to loop over the ear with the majority of the earphone sitting in the recess of your ear. Again, I was worried that the large part that sits in the ear and the loop over the ear would be potential rubbing grounds and lead to pain after a few hours. Remarkably, this does not happen. The piece that sits in the recess, barely touches your ear at all. When you initially get them, you will notice the cable near the actual earphone piece is coated with a layer of plastic that is not as flexible as the rest of the cable. You need to bend them around your ear and tighten the left/right splitter around your chin for a while until it holds its shape. After a day or so, you no longer need to do this chin business as they will have moulded perfectly.

Once the fit has settled in, in terms of comfort, they are amazing and an added benefit, is that they do not come out easily. You could happily go running around with them and even if you pull, you have to use substantial force before they come out. This is all due to the loop around the ear. Again, I am surprised and pleased to say that the loop does not cause me any discomfort whatsoever.

The cable is an aspect that I am very happy with as this is usually the part that breaks. The cable of the Shure SE215 of a high quality and is built to last. Even if you somehow manage to break the cable, it is replaceable as they clip into the actual ear piece. The 3.5mm connector is also plastic and rigid, thus the connection is protected. I expect these earphones based upon these characteristics to last several years at least. The product is also supplied with a soft case that has a clip which can be attached to a belt loop etc. It offers no real protection however, for if you for example stood upon it, the earphones would take the hit.

If you are willing to spend the money, I feel that for the price, these earphones are an excellent choice rewarding you with a lot for your money. Whilst my headphones sound better, these are not far off and that is remarkable for earphones. All frequency ranges are balanced and represented well. The fit is an important consideration as without a good one, the experience is spoiled in terms of sound, comfort and usability, but the Shure SE215 certainly deliver a great fit. For me the design of the shure SE215 is ingenious, many of the benefits not becoming fully apparent until I actually tried them. I can wear them all day without any discomfort and they are extremely secure and will not come out until you want them to. They come supplied with all the buds you could want, including foam ones which fit to your specific ear canal. All these aspects contribute to an excellent sounding set of earphones.

I'm an extremely happy owner and my commendations go to Shure for a great product.
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15 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Actually worth the money., 9 Mar 2011
It's a long review, but for a pair of headphones that launched at [], it should be!

A bit of background to where I'm coming from: I am very frustrated music lover, sick and tired of having to replace headphones once a month due to something within the cable snapping. While I had never delved into triple digits in a headphone before (can you blame me?), I could definetly tell what sounded good and what sounded cheap.

The best pairs of earphones I have had before these, are the Creztive Zen Aurvanas (which would have been great if they had lasted more than three weeks), and the Shure E2Cs, which had as much bass as a mouse on helium... and also died within weeks (due to a now-fixed common problem with Shure headphones - the cable splitting).

I was entertaining the notion of spending more this time around. I was personally looking at the Monster Turbine Pro Golds, whih were well reviewed. I nearly made the leap when I discovered the existence of these puppies. While I initially laughed at their launch price of 450, once I saw that the cable is completely detachable and replaceable, I immediately fell in love.

I felt trepidation at the prospect of getting Shures again - the E2Cs were a massive disappointment to me. But, after searching professional reviews, they were unanimous - these were the best headphones you could get. Their only alternative was to get the previous model, as at the time they were down as low as [] while these were being reviewed at ][ - so when I saw the opportunity to buy these for [].. despite being a student, I only held out for 24 hours!

So, they arrive - in the meantime, I nearly take a panic attack once I've realised exactly how much I had spent! However, I can tell you, that, without a doubt, these headphones sounded so good that I no longer felt bad about spending so much! They were that good! Unlike the E2Cs, these have three individual drivers - two of which are dedicated woofers. Get an airtight seal with these phones, and you will not hear bass like it. Rather than artificially boosted bass in cheaper headphones I've had before, like Sonys or Skullcandys, the bass sounds like it has genuine substance - less "turning the bass up to 11", more "plucking a bass guitar yourself".

I'm not a certified audiophile by any means, but I can appreciate the quality of these things by a mile. Listening to Ride the Lightning by Metallica, it sounds less like they're playing into recording equipment, and more like Kirk Hammett is shredding right at my ear! While I initially cringed at the ad blurb describing the drivers as "high-definition", I actually think that it's an accurate description of what they sound like, compared to cheaper headphones. To use a gaming metaphor, it's like owning an Xbox 360 with an older telly, only to get a new TV and play in HD for the first time - the clarity is absolutely outstanding! I'm currently listening to an HTC Desire HD, and I had absolutely no idea MP3s could convey such amazing sound!

Having different components within the earbud dedicated to different sound ranges makes all the difference. Even on the heaviest electronic tracks, the hardest shreds and fastest guitar solos, you can clearly hear every layer of music, where even slightly lesser headphones would just produce a disorted mess. Sometimes I thought it was artistically intentional - turns out it's not!

Everything from UNKLE to Eminem, Metallica to Sleigh Bells, Justice to Nirvana, even quieter stuff like Phil Wickham, Coldplay, Radiohead and Phoenix, sound completely different and so much better. Tracks that I've listened to until I've gotten sick of them sound as fresh as the first time I heard them!

At the end of the day, if I had went with cheaper in-ears, such as IE8s or Moster Turbine Pros, and heard these, I'd have felt regret for a long, long time. They may be cheaper, and have artificaially enhanced bass catering for modern tastes... but that's exactly what they would be - cheap alternatives with the bass shoved up. These SE535s are designed to be *accurate* - you can modily the sound to your tastes with equalizers AFTER, if you wish. I personally have SRS WOW HD enabled on my Desire HD, which is basically an amp built straight to the phone, and to my ears it seems to enhance the sound further and add an extra load of punchiness.

Also, the fact that I can just replace the (kevlar reinforced) cable easily is great (in fact it's what sold these to me). Don't feel like these have an expiry date!

At the end of the day, there are many, many voices that say that these are actually worth the money. I concur. It still sounds partially insane that I would be labelling 300 for these a great price, but... well, I am. They're that good. Go figure.

Also, I'd rather not listen to music, and go without, than use the bundled HTC ones. In fact, I did go without, for a month. They're very crap, even compared to 15 Sonys. So for the guy that believes that they sound better, well, power to ya. Some people like pain, some people are into coprophagia!

If you're on the fence, get off the fence and buy them, if you're affluent enough to do so. Or, in my case, if you can justify four weeks worth of part-time wages! (No regrets after hearing them)
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14 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Audio pleasure!, 9 Sep 2011
I have spent a lot of money on many different earphones in the last three years. I had some q-jays, shure scl2, then some from sony in the 40-70 range and I ended up with Shure SE530 which was really dissapointing experience ( I mostly listen to rock,pop maybe thats why, who knows) When I saw the SE215, I just said to myself I have to give them a try. That was probably the best decision I could have done. These earphones produces very enjoyable audio experience, it so much fun listening to them. Everytime I put the SE215 on, I can't stop smiling. Therefore I can truly recommend these earphones for everyday use since the price is not high and the fun factor is fantastic.

There is, of course, one cosmetic drawback: It is difficult to find perfect fit first time you try it. The cable has some extra plastic coating(up to 3cm from the earphones) so you can create tight form around your ears. I consider this solution being not very comfortable and you have to be carefull too, because it seems you can break the connection cable-earphone when trying too hard.
Anyway, great earphones, do not hesitate!
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