Philips O’Neill SHO9553/10 Specked In-Ear Headphones : Brilliant earbuds, if they’re for you.

The noise cancelling and sound quality are very good and as expected from the manufacturer’s specification of the headphones. The treble is a bit metallic, but bass is good provided when wearing them you push the ear buds in as far as they can go. Also as is with a lot of in ear headphones, any noise created from touching or dangling/swinging about of the loose cables attached to the device, create an amplified vibration and therefore noise which can affect or spoil the music you’re listening too. In my view this is something that is inherent in in-ear devices especially if you push the buds right in for tight grip when wearing them. If you want the best and comfortable wear and noise free experience then the on-ear or over-ear headphones are best for you.

I have tried various “in ear” earphones over the years and they have all suffered from “drop out” – not from the sound, but they end up falling out of my ears during exercise (or when lying on my side in bed reading). And then i tried these earphones. They stay in my ears – one of the main plus points of these earphones. The sound is good too – a strong bass line, and treble sounds fine – but as others have pointed out there is a fair bit of cable noise on them when the cable is knocked or touched. I like these phones a lot – they are comfortable and durable, and dont look too bad either.

I have never been a fan of in-ear earphones but thought i would try these as phillips is a make i trust. I find them very comfortable and the sound quality is excellent and the noise cancelling is also top notch. These earphones have a tangle free braided cloth cord which it has to be said is tangle free and feels much more durable than other headphones i have owned. The only nigggle is that due to the cloth cord when you are on the move you can get scratching due to the cord rubbing together. Overall i would certainly get another set of these but if you intend to use them in a gym or running etc then perhaps you might want to get a different set.

One of the main selling points of these headphones is the “tangle free” claims. I have had excellent headphones in the past that have gone wrong very quickly because of damage to the wiring in the cables. Whilst these ones do tangle a little bit, they are nowhere near as bad as most and untangle quite easily and do not knot. However, the real test of headphones is the quality of sound. The sound is clear with a good balance between bass and treble. They are also good at blocking out external sound through well fitting buds (a choice of three sizes is provided). This is important to me as i listen to audio books on the journey to work and phones that are ineffective at blocking out sound are useless for this as they make the speech difficult to hear. These phones do the job admirably. Firstly, they do pick up sound from the cables themselves as they rub against clothing. Secondly, there is no indication of which is the left hand speaker and which is the right. There are some pictures on the phones themselves but, as far as i can see, nothing to indicate whether these are significant and what they represent. These issues aside, i can recommend these and the price is pretty good too.

Great earphones are a devil to find. I hoped i’d find them with these, but they’re just ok. It took me a while to work out which size earplug to use – the small ones bizarrely – spending a day using the wrong size and having the earphones falling out constantly. Having said that, once i did get them to fit properly the in-ear sound was pretty good. It didn’t sound any louder than before, but it cancelled out external noise excellently. The one major downside is the scratching when you’re on the move. One of the benefits of these earphones is that the cord is a bit like string, so it doesn’t get all tangled up. However, the cord rustles up against your clothing when you start walking and really impinges on your listening. Fine when you’re sitting and stationary, but not great if you’re jogging, for example. So overall, pretty good in-ear sound, but let down by the external scratching.

I don’t agree with some of the other reviews of this product which say noise from the tangle-free cable is intrusive. Admittedly i don’t listen to music when i’m jogging or doing anything too energetic, but for me the sound was excellent when used with a portable player or a laptop, and the noise-cancelling facility was great, working best for me with the mid-sized (default) ear buds – although that preference would be down to the individual. The lead’s nice and long – long enough to plug into the computer when i’m listening to music or watching iplayer at my desk and don’t want to disturb others. The sound’s great, too – lovely breadth of sound with good bass response and clear top frequencies.

These are smart earphones, the first thing you notice is that the cables are covered in a braided fabric, this makes them quite stiff; philips claim they are tangle-free and this appears to work. At first i couldn’t tell which were the left and right earpieces and resorted to a web-site to play left and right tones to find out, i then noticed that what i thought was design squiggles on the earpieces were in fact highly stylised left and right symbols; the symbol for right is slightly more ornatein use the sound isolation is good, philips supply three differently sized ear-buds; sound is good, they have a clear, open sound with deep bass. The problem comes with the stiffness of the cables, any slight movement causes acoustic coupling to the earpieces which manifests itself as rumbling and banging. The implication is that these are intended for sports use and this renders them useless; also the braid covering the cables means that they will be impossible to clean if you get any sweat or dirt on them. Tangle-free cables are a good idea, just not this way.

The ones that came with my ipod hurt (i seem to have weird shaped ears) and most in-ear ‘phones are uncomfortable after a short while. I found that the ‘marshmallow’ range from jvc are budget earphones which fit snugly and remain comfortable for extended periods of time. I was more than willing to give these a try however and my first impressions were very good. These earphones come with three different sized covers, the medium sized cover is already fitted, depending on your preference you can easily switch them for the large or smaller covers. All three sets are soft and flexible, they easily slide into place and remain in your ear securely. Sound quality is excellent for a small earphone. It’s not going to give you the same depth as a large ‘over the ear’ set of headphones but it is the best sound quality i’ve experienced from an in-ear set. Pushed to the limits of volume they start to distort, but it’s much less obvious than others i’ve used. They also block out external noise pretty well, you can still hear what’s going on in the background but it’s very distant and doesn’t impinge on whatever you’re listening to.

  • Five Stars
  • Look Both Ways !
  • Don’t get in a tangle

Philips O’Neill SHO9553/10 Specked In-Ear Headphones

Product description, O’Neill – Philips The Specked Unisex Headphones

Manufacturer’s Description, The perfect accessory for your on-the-go lifestyle, Philips O’Neill The Specked in-ear headphones make music the constant companion on your journey. Compact enough to fit in a pocket or the palm of your hand, The Specked combines premium sound quality and unique style. The Specked may be small, but don’t underestimate the strength of this tough in-ear headphone. A strain-resistant, tangle-free cable and reinforced aluminium connectors make The Specked as durable as they come, while powerful 9-millimeter drivers provide superior audio quality. Also, the Specked comes with a choice of three sets of differently sized and coloured ear sleeves for a fully customised, stylish fit.

Philips O’Neill SHO9553/28 The Specked In-Ear Headphones (White Out),

  • Dynamic 9-millimeter drivers deliver premium sound quality
  • Tough tangle-free fabric cable and reinforced aluminium connectors for strength
  • Soft ear sleeves in three colours and sizes for optimum fit
  • Cool specked design
  • One-year limited warranty
  • Perfect Mix of Style and Sound Quality,

    Inspired by street art and digital media, The Specked sports a cool, specked look with brightly coloured ear sleeves. The 9-millimeter speakers deliver crisp, clear sound with deep, dynamic bass, and the ear buds feature improved sound leakage reduction–so you’re the only one who can hear and feel your music–not your neighbours.

    Clear, Accurate Sound,

    Using sound-isolation technology, The Specked delivers crisp, clear sound even at low volume levels. The snug-fitting ear buds overcome noisy environments, so you can enjoy the latest music without distraction.

    Soft Ear Sleeves in Different Colours and Sizes,

    The Specked’s soft ear sleeves provide padding and noise reduction, allowing you to engage fully with the music. Three colour options let you coordinate your ear sleeves to your outfit–or even your mood. And in three different sizes, they’re guaranteed to give you the right fit for your ears.

    Lightweight and Durable for Extended Life,

    The Specked is lightweight, perfect to take on a run or to the gym. And they’re durable too. Unlike headphones with plastic cables, The Specked is constructed with a tough, strain-resistant, tangle-free fabric cable that won’t bunch up and disrupt your listening experience. Strong aluminium connectors reinforce the audio jack to prevent breakage.

    About Philips O’Neill Headphones,

    O’Neill and Philips have joined forces to launch a co-branded, premium line of headphones delivering long-lasting durability and comfort. Sharing a tradition of enhancing the lives of active people through the introduction of innovative and meaningful products, O’Neill and Philips have come together to create a line of high-performance headphones specifically designed to withstand the brutal demands that accompany every active lifestyle.

    What’s in the Box,

    Philips O’Neill SHO9553/28 The Specked In-Ear Headphones (White Out) and three sets of ear sleeves.


    • Black Bordeaux
    • Powder White
    • Comfort,

      • Noise-isolating, super-soft ear cushions
      • Auto-fit cushioned headband
      • Stretchy neoprene padding
      • Durability,

        • Flexible, stress-crack-resistant, temperature-resistant material
        • Flexible super-stretch headband
        • Cable stress relief
        • Tangle-free fabric cable and reinforced connectors
        • Sound,

          40-millimeter drivers

          • White Black Check
          • Black Ice
          • Purple Plaid
          • Rebel Red
            • Adjustable, padded headband
            • Folds flat for easy storage and portability
                • Bold Black
                • Ultra Fuchsia
                • Royal Blue
                • White Out
                • Royal Purple
                • Orange
                • Three sizes of ear sleeves

                  • 9-millimeter drivers
                  • Noise-isolating soft ear sleeves
                  • Noise-isolating soft ear caps

                    • 13-millimeter drivers
                    • Mic, volume, and track control for iPhone/iPod/iPad
                    • Buy on Amazon

                      Quite what a wetsuit manufacturer knows about earphones is up for debate here, but at least o’neill and philips got their contributions the right way around – o’neill didn’t bring their electronics expertise, and philips didn’t bring their wetsuit knowledge. These are a funky pair of earbuds, but are a bit disapointing. The ‘specked’ finish looks disconcertingly like they’ve ear wax on them. The ‘l’ and ‘r’ to tell you which ear is which is written in a almost illegible gothic font and they look a bit girly. (which is fine of course if you are a girl, but not so much if you’re a bloke trying to look hardcore at the gym). I hoped these would replace my trusty¬†creative labs ep-630 noise isolating earphones ‘ black (eco packaging)¬†headphones but the sound quality, while excellent, isn’t noticeably better. The biggest drawback though, and one which makes them almost unusable, is the noise the cable makes. Now, i know that all in-ear style headphones tend to make thumps and rumbles when you knock the cable, but these philips are ridiculous. The cables seem particularly sensitive, and the generated noise seems to be far more intrusive than my creative’s, immediately being annoying and quickly becoming unbearable. It’s a shame, because the sound is really very good – lots of space and a pleasant sensation of listening to ordinary speakers rather than headphones.

                      Crikey, this is a nice little piece of kita philips / o’neill hybrid which manages topunch way above its weight. I tested “the speckled” on a high-end portable cd player(call me old-fashioned) and the wolfcave’s seismicdomestic sound-system. It’s very good in factthe ear-pieces are very comfortable indeed. There are threedifferent sizes of “soft ear sleeves” for tiny, middlingand huge aural appendages. There is very little sound “leakage”. I asked three fellow passengers on the train home tonightwhether they could hear any trace of the lady gaga “remix”album i was listening to and they convincingly declared that theycould not. This is a very good thing indeed. (hearing the persistent”tch-tch-tch-tch” of travelling sociopaths’ desert island discsis enough to make me want to bite their legs off – or worse)the earphones are well designed. I particularly enjoyed the”tough tangle-free cable” (once i had managed to untangle it)and the rather pretty multi-coloured (but subtle) speckles which,i assume, give the product its name.

                      I’m happy with these headphones, and have tried similar ‘total isolation’ sets in the past. The only issue with such items is, they seem to be aimed at sports users, but for runners like me the most dangerous thing you can do is run without being able to hear a single bit of background noise. Obviously, this is not the fault of this item, but something to bear in mind if this is your intended use. I did find the design a little bit feminine (especially if you have to use the pink (small) ear buds), but the construction of the cables is a real leap forward and they are much better than my other set of similar headphones. It has never occured to me before, as mentioned by another reviewer, that some headphones could drain a battery of a player quicker than others. I haven’t really tried these long enough to comment, but would hope that these would be better than very cheap or ‘included’ sets?overall, recommended, but other brands are available at a lesser cost.

                      I haven’t seen headphones that look like these before with their braided cord-cable and speckled design. They make a refreshing change from the standard black or white plastic with the inevitable thin, tangly cable that quickly becomes twisted and always feels it’s about to snap. These are completely different and the cord feels more like a woven nylon bootlace but with a sleek and quality feel – and it lives up to its claim of remaining tangle-free. One each earpiece, gold-coloured lettering indicates ‘right’ and ‘left’ but i’d thought this was just a decorative squiggle until i read other reviews and realised what it wasas for the headphones, these are exceptionally comfortable to wear and supplied with ear pads of three sizes to get that perfect fit. All are made from a light rubbery compound and washable making them more hygienic than some alternatives. There is an unexpected slight issue of noise from the cable rubbing against clothing when used during movement – so they are perhaps not the best headphones to use while active eg jogging. However, for general use, they’re so comfy you’ll forget you’re wearing them and will soon switch off from the outside world with these sound-isolating phone and lose yourself in the superb sound quality they offer.

                      Me and headphones have not had the easiest of histories. I think this will be about my tenth pair in 18 months. Now i’ve come to realise that with the sport i use them for and the amount of travelling i tend to do on coaches, normal headphones just don’t stand up to that sort of treatment which is actually quite annoying considering the lack of decently durable headphones out there. But finally i have found exactly what i need. These headphones sound ok (for true audiophiles i would get these for travel/sport and splash out on an extra pair that you keep safe) and although i have only had them for two weeks i have been to morocco and italy on planes, coaches and taxies and there is no sign of any wear. Sound: ok, good noise isolation and bass is decent but i know most people won’t care too much. All in all for the price and durability, excellent sound. Look: on some models the colours seem to clash to me but i think this white and gold look is really good. There are metallic parts like at the jack which i like. The actual heads are slim, not bulky and fit well as long as you push them in properly.

                      Finding a good, branded, durable, and budget earphone is not that easy. As a rule; the more costly it is, the more quality you get. Design: white and gold looks really cool, fashionable and trendy. The cable is made up of a tangle free fabric rather than the common rubber cord. It has an eye catching design making it looks decent and expensive. Comfort:with 3 soft ear sleeve, you can find the right fit and comfort for your ear. You don’t have to worry that it will fall out of your ear no matter what active activities you’re doing; running, working in gym, travelling, cycling, etc. It is very light and even in an hours of using it, you wont feel any discomfort and feels as you’re not wearing anything. Sound: it’s made by philips- one of the reputable electronics manufacturing industry. The sounds deliver by this earphone brings pleasurable listening experience no matter what musical genres you are into.

                      The phillips o”neill specked headphones give good audio playback, and the specked design helps them stand out from the crowd, from other in-ear iphone / mp3 player headphones. The bass response is good, and like most phillips headphones, they fit comfortably, and also come with spare ear buds, that are easy to fit. The only niggle for me is that when on the move, the movement of the lead does feed through to the headphones, which is distracting.

                      I’ve been trialling these for a couple of days. I’ve previously used sennheiser earbuds, and many other earphones. The sound quality is great, maybe on par with others in their class. It’s all about the noise canceling, which is fabulous when you want it. It does presents a genuine hazard from walking in traffic though, and sort of cuts you off from the rest of the human race. The tangle free cable are brilliant. They’re covered in fabric, sort of like a tiny iron cable, unlike the slippery or rubbery cables normally used. And they really don’t tangle; it’s a new one on me and a genuine innovation. As a 38 year old man, the white and gold colour are way too bling for me personally. Also, the slightly bulkier cables mean they’re not discrete at all, less so than ipod earphones, for example.

                      • Five Stars
                      • Look Both Ways !
                      • Don’t get in a tangle

                      Philips O’Neill SHO9553/10 Specked In-Ear Headphones

                      These headphones are really durable but this might compromise sound quality a little. They are perfect for me because they will last a long time and this is what i wanted. I got the white/gold ones and they look really good.

                      Lasted a while and was good.

                      Features and Spesification

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                      • Powerful 9mm drivers deliver a deep, dynamic bass
                      • Tough tangle-free cable and reinforced connectors
                      • Supreme comfort
                      • Sound isolating soft ear sleeves
                      • 3 sizes of ear sleeves for a customized fit