IE Headphones or On ear "portable" headphones -recommendations

Recommendations /comparisons please for a set of either, WIRED IE headphones OR Compact on ear WIRED headphones. With price limitation of up to £200. No intention to be out in all weathers or use during any flexing of limbs!

Sennheiser IE200 have been getting good reviews, within budget too.

Failing that, before I switched to wireless, I was using Shure SE425’s and thought they were great.

I’m not a fan of in-ear phones - I just hate having things in my ears - but I still love my portable Sennheiser PX-100s. I have two pairs and I use them far more than my B&W P7 or P9s. The fold up design and compact case is perfect for slipping into a jacket pocket. They are open but don’t leak so much that they annoy others on the train or plane. Sound-wise they remind me a bit of my Sennheiser HD600s. They cover their tracks very well and just might be all the headphone I could ever want or need when out and about. There are still NOS pairs out there so keep an eye out, and don’t be tempted by the mk2s - not as good!


I prefer old fashioned Earbud’s to IE’s.

I use FIIO EM5:-

FIIO FF3 are also very good:-

No unauthorised commercial links in the Hifi Corner please. Thanks.

Which wireless did you go to from the Shure? Only as as am very impressed with Sennheisers MTW3 that they’ve now peaked my interest in some wired IEMs

With IEMs it’s absolutely critical to choose tips that are a good fit for your ear canal. I use Shure IEMs which sound great, and are supplied with a choice if different rubber or foam tips in different sizes. Their grey silicone rubber tips are a perfect fit for me. All the others do not give a proper seal, and make the headphones sound poor, especially low frequencies which more or less vanish.

I have ACS IEM’s, you go to an audiologist for a mould of your ears so they are a custom perfect fit. Any of the Sennheiser HD25 on ears are decent for the money.

Funnily enough, I’m also using Sennheiser MTW3 and really enjoying them.
Had mobile phone companies not decided to ditch headphone jacks, I’d probably still be using wired earphones.

1 Like

I have loved the Etymotics ER4P with the P to S adapter, and graduated to Shure 535 in 2014. They just died and I was so happy to find a second pair of closeouts on Amazon. The 535 is all I need. The next step up 846 is over $800 now. Not ready to step up here. But I might try these new units at home with my new incoming Nait50 and my current Chord Hugo TT2, now that I have an adapter for the mini headphone plug.

Meze Classic?

The Meze classic are good but I can’t imagine them being practical on the go….

The trend seems to be big over the ear phones and I have to say Sonys wh-1000xm4 fir £250 are hard to beat.

In ears never worked for me despite trying multiple tips - the comply tips just about work but still not for me.


I tried some Comply tips in my Shure SE846. They were completely useless, and went in the bin after a few minutes of trying them.

Custom IEM moulds working for my ‘difficult’ ears that couldn’t tolerate standard tips for any time. Search will show a recent thread on this. Absolutely changed my mobile listening.


This topic was automatically closed 60 days after the last reply. New replies are no longer allowed.