The fine folks over at Kicker were kind enough to provide me a few sets of earbuds to review. I received the EB51′s and the EB71′s, which are described as the Premium Full Range Ear Buds and the Noise Isolation In Ear Monitors respectively. They were also kind enough to send over two pairs of each, which means that I have a brand new set of each to give away to a few lucky Gadgetell readers. But more on the giveaway in another post that will come later today, for now lets concentrate on the review.
First, just to give a little history as to my earbud use. I will say that I spend more time than I should wearing earbud style headphones — on some days up to 3, 4 or even 5 hours. That said, I use them at my computer (an iMac and Eee PC netbook), with my iPhone, my HTC Hero and my Zune HD. In other words, I use them with a variety of sources, but nothing that is going to require exceptional sound quality. As far as content, I listen to a mix of Slacker, Pandora, audio and video podcasts as well as Zune Marketplace content and ripped CD’s. Again, nothing that screams audiophile.
What is being reviewed?
- Kicker EB51 Premium Full Range Ear Buds – $15.95
Available in blue, pink, black and yellow.
- Kicker EB71 Noise Isolation In Ear Monitors – $23.95
Available in blue, pink, black, gray and white.
Basically, according to me, what makes for a good set of earbuds is a decent price and a comfortable fit. Unfortunately everyone is different in terms of fit, but I will say that both the EB51′s and EB71′s offered me a great fit. The EB51′s are standard earbuds, however the EB71′s ship with a variety of earpieces to provide a more “custom” fit.
Overall, I would say that both models offered an acceptable sound quality, but like I mentioned I am not listening to high quality sources.
Another nice perk which may be important for some is that both the EB51′s and EB71′s come in a variety of colors. As you can see from the images, I reviewed the yellow EB51′s and the grey EB71′s.
Personally, another item that I consider when purchasing earbuds is price because while a good amount of my use time is indoors in front of a computer, I also spend a fair amount of time using them for running and general house/yard work. In other words, I want decent quality without breaking the bank. You know, just in case, or more accurately for when I ruin them. With that the Kicker EB51′s and EB71′s are in that not breaking the bank category at $15.95 and $23.95 respectively. Although they can be found for a little cheaper on Amazon.
For me, the price is right and these both offered a comfortable fit — even with extended wear. Personally, I liked the EB51′s a little better just because they seemed slightly more comfortable.
The Bottom Line
I will continue to use, and recommend both the EB51′s and EB71′s that I received as review items.