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Originally published on SoundStage! Xperience

Massdrop x NuForce EDC3 earphones measurements can be found by clicking this link.

Reviewers' ChoiceAll by themselves, the Massdrop x NuForce EDC3 earphones tell the story of where the audio biz is headed in 2018. Although the EDC3s pack three balanced-armature drivers into each tiny earpiece, they cost just $99 USD -- about 25% of what three-driver earphones typically cost a few years ago. They’re sold not through retail outlets or even conventional e-tailers, but through Massdrop, a Web-only entity that sells products based on requests and feedback from its own online communities. Five years ago, no one would have believed you could get three-driver earphones for $99, and no one would have heard of Massdrop.

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Originally published on SoundStage! Xperience

Monoprice Monolith M300 earphones measurements can be found by clicking this link.

Products like the Monolith M300 in-ear earphones show how different Monoprice is from other audio brands. Other than their name and logo, Monoprice makes no pretense of brand identity in their products. Their focus is working with various overseas manufacturers to deliver products of (usually) reasonably good quality in all sorts of categories, at prices so low that few other companies can match them. However, the Monolith M300 earphones reflect what seems to be a minor sideline for Monoprice: products that look like knockoffs of well-regarded models made by other companies.

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Originally published on SoundStage! Xperience

Brainwavz B200 earphones measurements can be found by clicking this link.

Reviewers should beware the influence of manufacturers’ marketing copy, but we’re human and fallible. So a press release promising that a new set of earphones is “tuned to produce a balanced and accurate sound signature, with little to no coloring in the sound” still piques my interest, even when I know manufacturers’ statements aren’t reliable indicators of their products’ performance. But the Brainwavz B200s ($199 USD) have a couple of things going for them that lend credence to the company’s claims.

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Originally published on SoundStage! Xperience

1More Quad Driver earphones measurements can be found by clicking this link.

Reviewers' ChoiceHeadphone enthusiasts were surprised last year by the debut of the 1More brand. First, they were shocked by the low prices: 1More offered its Triple Driver hybrid balanced/dynamic earphones for just $99.99 USD, one-third the price most companies charge for such a product. Then they were surprised to find that the Triple Drivers included a generous suite of extras: six sizes of eartips in silicone and three in foam, plus a very nice and practical travel case. And they were stunned to hear how good the Triple Drivers sounded -- far better than all but a few earphones costing less than $200.

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Originally published on SoundStage! Xperience

Audeze iSine10 earphones measurements can be found by clicking this link.

Reviewers' ChoiceI’ve been reviewing headphones and earphones since 2008, but the Audeze iSine10s are the first I’ve encountered that create their own category. The iSine10s ($399 USD with Lightning and analog cables, $349 with analog cable only) differ from all other earphones not only in their sound, appearance, and the way they work, but even in the ways you’ll use them.

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Originally published on SoundStage! Xperience

Audiofly AF1120 earphones measurements can be found by clicking this link.

Reviewers' ChoiceWe audiophiles think of ourselves as sophisticated, discerning consumers, but the “more is better” trend in earphones makes me wonder. In this case, “more” means more drivers. You can now buy earphones, such as 64 Audio’s A12s, with as many as 12 drivers per earpiece. Yet you can also buy high-end earphones, such as Sennheiser’s IE 800s, with just a single driver per ear. And, of course, you can get models in between, such as Audiofly’s six-driver AF1120 earphones ($699.99 USD).

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