Date Wed 29 December 2010 Tags gadgets

In November 2009 I bought a pair of Ultimate Ears Metro.Fi 220 Noise Isolating Earphones from Advancedmp3players. I have been very happy with these, but a week or so ago, I noticed that I was listening in mono. After a few tests it turns out that the left channel was almost muted. I tried the earphones on a few different devices, so it was definitely an earphone problem, not an audio player problem. I take care of my earphones and these weren't cheap (around £30), so I was annoyed that they lasted just over a year. They have a nice little slider on the part where the earpieces split from the main cable. You can push this up to keep the two earpieces together when you are not using the earphones, which helps to stop them tangling. The earpiece for the right hand channel was a different colour, which meant it was easy to get the correct channel in the correct ear.

Thinking about getting a new pair, I realized that almost everything I listen to is speech (Podcasts, Audiobooks, radio recordings), so getting earphones with outstanding music performance was a waste of money. The natty little slider thing was very useful, so I wanted my new pair to have this feature. I prefer in ear noise isolating phones and interchangeable buds, so I could get a got fit were essential features.

I was out on my bike and on a whim dropped into Argos to see what they had available. Browsing through the catalogue I saw some Sony MDR-EX35LP earphones. These had the little slider widgets and came with interchangeable ear buds. There was also a cord tidy included, although I already have several Proporta ones. Even better they were reduced from £19.99 to £9.99. The phones I had before the Ultimate ears pair were Sony and lasted much longer than a year. A few minutes later I was happily cycling away from Argos listening to a Podcast through both ears.

Ultimate Ears Update.

After doing some Googling, I discovered that my Ultimate Ears had a two year warranty. More Googling revealed that Ultimate Ears were owned by Logitech and I finally landed at Logitech's Customer Support Page.

I filled in the form explaining that my left earpiece was broken and submitted it. Later on that day I received a reply asking me for proof of purchase. Luckily it was an on line purchase, so I had a record of the transaction which I forwarded to Logitech. Almost immediately I received a reply saying that they no longer had the Metro Fi 220 earphones, but offering me a choice of two other pairs. I chose the Ultimate Ears™ 200 Noise-Isolating Earphones. Within a couple of hours I received another email saying that the new pair would be dispatched soon. Logitech didn't even want me to return the old pair. So well done Logitech for excellent customer service.

I received the new earphones a couple of days after dispatch and they every bit as good as the old pair. I will be using the Sony earphones as a spare pair in future.


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