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Etymotic HF5 Earphones/Headset (Blue)

4.1 out of 5 stars 32 customer reviews

Price: CDN$ 178.79 & FREE Shipping. Details
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18 new from CDN$ 164.50
Cobalt
Without Mic
  • Best Sound Accuracy: 85%+ response accuracy from 20 Hz-120 kHz; Achieves highest output sensitivity in its class with 105 dB SPL sensitivity at 1kHz at 0.1 mV; AccuDriver high performance, precision matched, balanced armature drivers.
  • Best Noise Isolation: 35-42 dB noise isolation; documented highest noise isolation of any earphones or headphones on the market today.
  • Best style and fit: cobalt soft-touch finish; an assortment of noise-isolating ACCU Fit eartip options to ensure proper seal and comfort; CustomFit option available
  • Best durability and warranty: 2 year replacement warranty; Kevlar-reinforced cable for durability; ACCU Filter user-replaceable filters that protect the balanced armature drivers from ear wax and debris.
  • 3.5mm stereo phone plug
  • Super-high accuracy provides a near-perfect listening experience
  • 3-flanged earpiece provides up to 35dB of isolation
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System Requirements

Color Name: Cobalt | Style: Without Mic
  • Platform: Not Machine Specific
  • Media: Electronics
  • Item Quantity: 1

Product Details

Color Name: Cobalt | Style: Without Mic
  • Product Dimensions: 9.5 x 5.1 x 17.1 cm ; 113 g
  • Shipping Weight: 136 g
  • Item model number: ER5-COBALT
  • ASIN: B000XP8DJC
  • Date first available at Amazon.ca: July 26 2009
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars 32 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #42,326 in Electronics (See Top 100 in Electronics)
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Product Description

Color Name:Cobalt  |  Style:Without Mic

Amazon.ca Product Description

Etymotic Research HF5--High Clarity, Great Fit, and Maximum Noise Isolation. The HF5 delivers a near-perfect music experience, even in high surrounding noise conditions. Like Etymotic's earlier generations of in-ear earphones, the HF5 is built on superior noise isolation, so you experience total sound immersion when listening to your music. The HF5 is compatible with all iPod models and music players that accept a 3.5mm plug. This package includes the HF5 in-ear earphones, assorted eartips for your comfort, a filter changing tool with filters, and a protective carrying pouch.

From the Manufacturer

Etymotic Research HF5--High Clarity, Great Fit, and Maximum Noise Isolation

Made by Etymotic Research, the people who created in-ear earphones, the HF5 delivers Etymotic's world-renowned sound quality in a pair of comfortable, convenient earphones. The HF5 provides a near-perfect music experience.

The HF5 works with all MP3 players and iPod models, as well as the iPhone and any other device that operates with a 3.5 mm stereo plug. The HF5 can be worn with the cables in front or in back of the head, and the cable slider can be adjusted by moving it up or down for a snug fit.



The HF5 comes in black, Ruby, and Cobalt to match your style

Amazing response accuracy means unmatched crystal-clear sound

Designing the HF5: Etymotic Research Focuses on Noise Isolation and Response Accuracy

Keeping Things Quiet with 35+ dB Noise Isolation

The special 3-flanged earpieces that come with the HF5 provide 35 dB noise isolation or more (depending on the eartip used), making it one of the highest-rated products on the market for both active and passive noise-canceling headphones. With 35 dB of isolation, you won't need to turn the music up as loud to hear every nuance of your favorite artists, saving your hearing and preventing "ear fatigue". Once you obtain a proper seal in the ear, watch the world disappear, leaving you with your favorite music reproduced with remarkable clarity.

How Etymotic Research Measures Response Accuracy

The accuracy score is perhaps the single most important tool for earphone design. A perfect recording of a live performance played through earphones with 100% accuracy would produce the same sound at the eardrum as the live performance. A complicating factor is that the acoustic resonance and horn effects of the ear change a flat signal entering the open ear to an eardrum signal with the approximate frequency characteristic of the target curve. A perfect earphone will create that same frequency characteristic at the eardrum.

Hitting the "Target Curve"

Target curves on Etymotic Research graphs indicate 100% accuracy: The open ear diffuse-field response of the KEMAR® mannequin modified to compensate for the high frequency boost added to high-quality recordings. This modification (approximately 5 dB at 10 kHz) is necessary to avoid earphones sounding too bright on commercial recordings. Commercial recordings have a high-frequency boost that compensates for the high frequency roll-off in studio monitor loudspeakers and high-quality stereo loudspeakers and earphones.

Earphone response is measured on a KEMAR® manikin that has the same acoustic properties as the average head and ear. 25-band accuracy scores are calculated by summing the difference between the earphone response and the target response in each 1.3 -octave band from 50 Hz to 12.5 kHz.

In the 1970s, Consumers Union used an "Accuracy Score" to rate loudspeakers. Consumer Reports reported that it was possible to predict listeners' loudspeaker ratings within 8% from a calculation based on one-third-octave frequency response measurements converted to loudness in sones. The average error in loudness from a perfect system, subtracted from 100%, gives the accuracy score. Etymotic Research extended this 21-band calculation to a 25-band calculation and routinely uses the 25-band accuracy score in all earphone designs.

Other in-the-ear earphone manufacturers do not report accuracy scores, but Etymotic Research has tested all competitive products. The accuracy scores of Etymotic Research earphones are higher than those of most loudspeakers, and well above all competitive earphones, except electrostatic headphones that cost thousands of dollars.


What Critics Are Saying

"They're cool looking (with the right tips, they look like sci-fi laser pistols), have little to no cable movement noise and reproduce sound in a way that is both perfectly clear and highly enjoyable. Everything about these gives the impression of quality, from the brushed aluminum finish to the way that music suddenly sounds distinctly layered in a way that it didn't before, and that it doesn't on many similarly priced units. [...] The tighter seal that these offer to most people is conducive to better listening, and the isolation properties are superb. You can't hear anything else with these guys in. Every manufacturer should have something like this." --John Herman, Gizmodo.com



Technical Specifications

  • Frequency response: 20 Hz -16 kHz
  • Noise isolation: 35- 42 dB (depending on eartip used)
  • Acoustic polarity: + electrical = + acoustic
  • Transducer type: Balanced armature
  • Sensitivity (1 kHz): 105 dB SPL for a 0.1 VRMS input
  • Impedance: 16 Ohms (nominal)
  • Maximum output: 120 dB SPL
  • Cable: 4 ft
  • Weight: less than 1 oz


Customer Questions & Answers

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Style Name: Without MicColor: Black Verified Purchase
While they re-produce the sound quite accurately, the lows aren't as noticeable and the bass is almost non-existent. Difficult to find quality tips as the only ones that were half-decent (triple flange) became flattened. After a while they also slipped off very easily. While they're still good headphones, I can't justify the price. They aren't flashy headphones which can be a good thing when you're travelling.
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Style Name: Without MicColor: Black Verified Purchase
great sound but a royal pain to get the in ear piece to sit where they're supposed to. I've tried all the different adapters that come with (and that's a huge bonus, lots of choice) but the ones that have the most noise reduction are the ones that hurt the most. I'll keep working them to see if it's just a break in period but I will say this, on a recent long flight with these bad boys in I didn't hear much in the way of plane noise and next to nothing in the way of crying baby noise, just the clear amazing sound from the music I was listening to.
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Style Name: Without MicColor: Cobalt Verified Purchase
Pros:
-FANTASTIC noise isolation with the triple flange, had Shures before and these are WAY better
-excellent clear response. Combined with the noise isolation I'm hearing all sorts of little detail I never heard before
-Very light

Cons:
-Not bass heavy. I've gotten so used to earbuds/headphones with bass boost it sometimes sounds wrong. This isn't really a con, but you should know.
-For the first week I'd thought I'd wasted my money, I actually bruised my ear canal putting them in. I thought my ear canal was too small. Later realized I had large each canals, and I needed the large tip so that it would properly seal (I guess before I was ramming the small tip too far in my ear.

Tips for wearing:
-You MUST get it in your each canal. Once you get used to it, it's easy, but it takes a while to find them consistently.
-Try the different tips.
-I usually put a tiny bit of moisture on the first flange (it's gross but I touch it to my inner lip). Not too much, or it'll just out (and feel really disgusting and itch).
-Put it in 90-180 degrees from the angle you want and "twist" it in to place as you're inserting.
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Style Name: Without MicColor: Black Verified Purchase
Great sound and good noise isolation. After prolonged listening, does get a bit uncomfortable. Stretching the ears a bit when taking the buds after listening is a good idea to open the seal between earcanal and buds. Haven't tried the foam buds yet
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Style Name: Without MicColor: Cobalt Verified Purchase
First of all, it was very difficult to get these to fit properly. And even then to position them to get good sound, which I was never overly satisfied with. Very thin. But I was prepared to live with them. And then they broke after 3 months! One channel simply cut out. I have use sparingly and treated gently. It was advertised have having a durable build.

I actually switched to this after having used the Brainwave M3 for a couple of years. They broke after three years. I loved their sound, but was prepared to try something different that sounded better (ratings for the Etymotic HF5 were high,though I do not understand why) and that were more durable. These lost out on 4 counts-sound, fit, price and durability. I would recommend to anyone, do not waste you money on these.
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Style Name: Without MicColor: Black Verified Purchase
Great for traveling by airplane. I have some hearing loss so hate having the volume loud enough to hear with regular earphones. These block a lot of the ambient noise, allowing me to use the lowest airline volume setting (which is still too loud)
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Style Name: Without MicColor: Black Verified Purchase
- The passive isolation is perfect for the spiritual seekers
- Excellent sound quality
- Large tips fit perfectly (you need to try and find the good tips or you won't get the quality and isolation)
- The sound produce is very accurate and balanced. As a musician this is what I'm looking for.
- With accuracy however, if the quality of the track is s***, then you hear s***.
- I owned Bose 20i and the active noise isolation hurt my ears. I can't notice a difference in quality with the HF5s (for half the price!).
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Style Name: Without MicColor: Black Verified Purchase
So smooth, exactly what I was looking for, and sealed well in the ear canal. Some have complained about the bass, but I feel the reproduction is accurate, if not somewhat accentuated. It's nice to have one premium set of in-ear headphones.
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Color Name: Cobalt | Style: Without Mic