Panasonic RP-HC55 In-Ear only Headphones - Silver Reviews

Panasonic RP-HC55 In-Ear only Headphones - Silver

6 ratings (3 Epinions reviews)
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Great noise reduction, but uncomfortable.

Oct 24, 2009
Review by  
Rated a Very Helpful Review

Pros:Noise cancellation is great. Sound quality and volume are very good.

Cons:Earbuds are uncomfortable over long wear, and dislodge way too easily.

The Bottom Line: None of the three sizes of included ear insert sizes keept earbuds in my ears. Ears start hurting after about an hour. Noise cancellation and sound quality are great.

I bought these noise cancelling headphones about 6 months ago because they were rated # 1 in the category by the Consumer Reports magazine. I am now looking for alternative headphones because I am not satisfied with these ones.

The headphones come with a small soft carrying sack that is big enough for the headpones and for my iPod nano. The AAA battery goes into a compartment on the cord that also has the volume control slider.  This battery unit has a plastic clip to attach to your shirt pocket or somewhere else on your clothing.  If you don't attach it, the unit is heavy enough to pull uncomfortably on the earbuds.  There is a small LED that shows you whether the unit is on or off.

The headphones come with semi-transparent ear inserts in three different sizes. It is easy to put them on or take them off the earbuds. The biggest problem for me is that the earbuds would not stay securely in my ears with either of the three sets of inserts. Medium seemed a bit too large, and Small was a bit too small.

The earbuds would stay in my ear as long as I sat with my head straight and did not move.  As soon as I would lower my head, one of the earbuds would become loose and sometimes fall out completely.

The other problem that I've been having is of comfort: while perfectly fine up to an hour, my ears would start to hurt if I tried to use the headphones for something like an hour and a half to watch an entire movie on the plane.

Now that I've covered the negatives, let me mention the positives: these headphones are by far the best I've tried at cancelling out external noises on an airplane.  They successfully deal with the wide range of constant noises from low-frequency drone, to high-frequency whine of the engines and wind.

The headphones also offer excellent sound quality in my opinion.  I was happy withe the treble as well as the bass.

Lastly, with either my iPod, my Blackberry, or the airplane entertainment systems I never felt like there was not enough volume. It is, however, fairly hard to adjust volume precisely with the slider on the control unit / battery comparment. Most of the time I resorted to setting this volume control to the highest setting, and using the volume controls on whatever audio device I was listening to.

The headphones lack any sort of mute / monitor button that is available on some other headphones.  So when you need to hear what's going on around you, you either need to take earbuds out, or turn off headphones.

Recommend this product? No

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