If you’re the owner of an iPhone, then you’ve no doubt begrudged the stupid recessed headphone jack and spent many a night lying awake, hoping for a resolution to come swiftly in the night. If you don’t own an iPhone, you probably have no idea what I’m talking about, so move along. There’s nothing to see here.
Alright, now that they’re gone, I’m going to be frank with you all. I have a love-hate relationship with the iPhone. I know I slandered it to no end before its release, but after the price drop, I couldn’t help myself — I needed a new iPod and I’m an AT&T customer, what choice did I have really?
While the device has its problems, for the sake of this review, we’re only going to focus on one: Apple’s crazy decision to use a recessed headphone jack; a decision that, without a clunky adapter, rendered useless every decent set of headphones out there. And even with the adapter, your headphones have no mic or toggle button, which is one of the coolest things of the iPhone. It was a conundrum of epic proportions.
Six months out, however, we have some options. Biggs recently recommended the V-Moda Vibe Duo, a completely valid solution priced at a reasonable $89. They include all the features found on the Apple’s exorbitantly priced, piece of crap stock headphones, except they don’t suck. The one major setback is that the cloth cords, while very cool looking and seemingly sturdy, tend to knot up — a nuisance I couldn’t bare.
Fortunately for me (and all iPhone owners, really), headphone heartthrob Ultimate Ears has decided to dive into the iPhone arena with the Super.fi 4vi ear buds. Built from the same drivers found in UE’s Super.fi line, the 4vi incorporates a mic and a toggle button. The toggle, I should note, is aces. Unlike the V-Moda and Apple, UE created a separate toggle box that isn’t attached to the microphone. This is a particular advantage over the Vibe Duo whose toggle button is clumsily placed and nearly impossible to push quickly (and impossible to push with gloves on).
In terms of sound, the 4vi is far and away the best iPhone specific headphones that I currently know of. While not exactly in the same class as earbuds like the Triple.fi 10 pros, the 4vi model achieves a full range of sound in a tightly packed package with attractive aluminum canisters. The included silicone tips allow you to completely shut out ambient noises, so no more being subjected to beggars, tourists, crappy street musicians, people handing out stupid fliers and, most importantly beggars. Good times.
Like all UE products, the 4vi offer superior sound quality at a price, $150 in this case. Sure it’s half as much as you spent on your iPhone, but you own an iPhone, you’re not one to skimp on status symbols.
But if you simply can’t muster the scratch for a pair, you’re in luck. We’re giving away one pair of the Super.fi 4vi in an old school CrunchGear reader response contest. Between now and Monday at 1 p.m. EST comment your little hearts out on any CrunchGear post.
We will select a winner based on various criteria including frequency of posts, quality of said posts and, if all else fails, coin tosses. To win, you MUST enter your email address in the commenter information field. Comments without email addresses will not be counted as entries. Now get started.