I was on here years and then stopped because I didn't have any Apple devices. I've gotten an iPhone XR. I am looking for headphones, and good holy gods, let the troubles begin!
Right now I'm running Sennheiser HD25 Light headphones into a 3.5 to lightning adapter. That works fine, except for two major issues.
1. If I have music going at a decent level, they don't really let me hear a lot of what's going on around me.
2. They have no controls, not surprising since they weren't made for a phone, until recently they were hooked to a Victor Stream. So if I'm working out, walking either around the house or on a treadmill, and I want to skip a track or something, I have to stop and pull the phone out of my pocket or the armband it's in and use two hands to do whatever on the phone.
No problem, I think to myself, I've heard there are headphones with transparency that let's you hear what's going on around you. So I ordered a set of Tribit Flybuds Pro C3 or whatever they're called. The app was hardly accessible, the personalized thing where it tested your hearing didn't work at all, and the modes switched between one that sounded pretty decent and one that sounded like it was all midrange and treble, neither of which had any transparency. They fell out of my ears just sitting and messing with them, so I returned them, I'm not necessarily a huge fan of earbuds anyway.
I've looked at other earbuds anyway, because that seems to be what's mostly out there. I can get Anchor ones with transparency, but they're not really rated for sports. I'm not doing crazy sports, but I am using them to work out and I sweat, so they're gonna have to do something. I can get sports ones, but they'll just block my ears anyway, and I already have decent headphones if I'm not worried about potentially hearing my surroundings, though I would get controls.
I've looked at the Sony Link Buds, and the Link Buds S. Apparently the originals don't sound that great, no bass to speak of to hear reviewers tell it, and the S which are noise reducing and have a transparency feature apparently have weird controls that don't let you do certain things, e.g. change volume from the earbuds.
I've seriously considered audio glasses, except the Bose Temppo seem to be the best, but they are A. expensive, and B. apparently bleed sound, which makes sense since they use directed speakers. Hearing music and having your ears totally unblocked was kind of cool though. But I'm not sure I need people haring my music or speech synth yammering away or whatever. So I'm told bone conduction headphones aren't that great in terms of sound quality either.
So after all of that, if you're still here, let me see if I can sum up what I'm looking for, which I wouldn't have thought would be too terribly hard to find, but I am apparently wrong.
1. Phone controls, by which I mean volume, track forward and back, stuff like that. I'm actually not using the phone as a phone, it has no cell service, but since anything that has controls seems to let you deal with calls, that's no problem.
2. Something that sounds decent.
3. Something that let's me hear my surroundings, if necessary.
4. Preferably something that doesn't cost the damn moon, Bose Quiet Comfort seems to be highly recommended, but they cost $330. The phone, used, is only costing me $125. I guess if I'm considering audio glasses at all I'm willing to pay more for audio than the phone costs, but $330 for earbuds is insane.
5. If we're going with headphones rather than earbuds, probably what I'd prefer, I'm looking for on-ear headphones, i.e. the smaller ones that sit against your ears, not the big clamshell things that entirely surround your ear. I thought we might have gotten lucky with the Anchor space something or other, but from what my wife can see, they actually surround the ear.
I've read every headphone review posted here, and none of them, excluding the Sony Link Buds, see above, really seems to capture what I'm after, or even discusses the ability to hear your surroundings, most of the time. I'm willing to pay a bit for decent sound, but I'd like to keep it around 100-200 if possible, rather than 300 plus. So if anybody's got any recommendations, I'd really appreciate it. Pro tip, if your recommendation contains the words beats or skull, no. I want serious headphones, not corporate marketing gibberish.