December 16, 2009
iLounge recently announced the winners of their 2009 Best of Show Awards. After testing, considerable discussion and deliberation, they have decided to award a Best of Show Finalist Award to the MetroFi 170vi because of what it represents – a relatively strong, highly affordable combination of quality earphones and microphone functionality with a nice design.
They also gave merit to Ultimate Ears’ new series of low-end MetroFi earphones, which consist of the entry-priced MetroFi 170 ($50) and 170vi ($60) series, the former for iPods, the latter with a microphone and remote button for iPhones, as well as the more deluxe MetroFi 220 ($80) and 220vi ($90), with similar microphone differentiation.
Also mentioned, but did not receive an award is the MetroFi 220vi, which looks nicer and sounds a little better, but costs more. Both pairs do a nice job of matching the classic Ultimate Ears sound signature, with good treble detail to offset strong bass, and though fans of the company’s many more expensive earphones won’t be blown away by the audio quality, either model would be a solid, sharp-looking starter pair of canal phones to upgrade from Apple’s iPod and iPhone stock earphones.
November 21, 2009
Ultimate Ears also offers a family of quality IEMs called the Custom family. The Custom line of monitors are custom-molded to fit the ears of the buyer. Custom molds are made with the help of an audiologist. Each monitor from the Custom line is suited for different types of music and/or recording.
- The UE11 PRO with Quadruple Balanced Armature Driver Technology, Single High-end Frequencies Driver, Single Mid Frequencies Driver, and Dual Low-End Frequencies with Three-way integrated Passive Crossover
- The UE10 Pro with Triple Balanced Armature Driver Technology, Single High-End Frequencies Driver, Dual Mid-Low Frequencies Drivers with Integrated Passive Crossover Circuit Board.
- The UE7 Pro with Triple Balanced Armature Driver Technology, Single High-End Frequencies Driver, Dual Mid-Low Frequencies Drivers with Integrated Passive Crossover.
- The UE5 Pro With Dual Balanced Armature Drivers, Single High-End Frequencies Driver, Single Mid-Low Frequencies Driver with integrated Passive Crossover
- The UE4 Pro with Dual balanced armature drivers, single high-end frequencies driver, single mid-low frequencies driver with an integrated passive crossover network.
All current Ultimate Ears Customs are now available with an ambient option. Getting fitted for Custom IEMs require a trip to the audiologist, as they perfectly match the inside of an individuals ear. However, fitting is free at the Ultimate Ears facility in Irvine.
November 21, 2009
Ultimate Ears’ mainstream offering is the Super.Fi family of in-ear monitors as follows:
- The Loud Enough, designed for children 6 and up, with a 10mm mylar driver and limits sound pressure levels to 60%.
- The MetroFi 100 with a 10mm mylar driver.
- The MetroFi 100vi, designed for the iPhone, with a 10mm mylar driver and inline microphone.
- The MetroFi 170 with a small, high-energy dynamic driver
- The MetroFi 170vi, designed for the iPhone with a small, high-energy dynamic driver and inline microphone.
- The MetroFi 220, with a small, high-energy, titanium high-performance dynamic driver.
- The MetroFi 220vi, designed for the iPhone with a small, high-energy, titanium High-performance dynamic driver and inline microphone.
- The SuperFi 3 Studio with one balanced armature driver.
- The SuperFi 4 with a proprietary balanced armature speaker.
- The SuperFi 5 with one Proprietary balanced armature driver.
- The SuperFi 5vi designed for iPhone, with one Proprietary balanced armature driver.
- The SuperFi 5 EB with one balanced armature and one 13.5mm diaphragm driver.
- The SuperFi 5 Pro with Dual balanced armature drivers with pre-emptive inline crossover.
- The Ultimate Ears 700 with Dual Micro balanced armature in-ear monitor with pre-emptive inline crossover.
- The TripleFi 10 Pro with three balanced armature in-ear monitor with pre-emptive inline crossover.
- The TripleFi 10vi Pro, designed for the iPhone, with three balanced armature in-ear monitor with pre-emptive inline crossover and inline microphone.
Like all earphones the Ultimate Ears consumer earphones require the user to test varying sizes of ear cushions (included with the purchase) in order to achieve the proper fit, ensuring environmentally-friendly noise isolation.
November 21, 2009
Ultimate Ears, was founded by Jerry Harvey and Alex Van Halen in 1995. Van Halen, the drummer for rock band Van Halen, had his earphone stop working suddenly in the middle of a concert. Harvey, Van Halen’s touring monitor engineer, created the custom molded earpiece for him. Other band members became interested and Harvey crafted further sets. Other musicians that saw the in-ear monitors were interested and it appeared that there was a market.
After 7 years of making custom in-ear monitors for professional musicians, in 2002 Ultimate Ears expanded into the consumer market. They came out with universal fit, high end earphones using similar dual armature technology that was used in the custom in-ear monitors. Several years later Ultimate Ears introduced a triple armature product called the TripleFi as well as earphones with diaphragm speakers which allowed them to offer lower price points. Today UE offers complete product lines of consumer earphones and custom fit in-ear monitors.
Ultimate Ears was acquired by Logitech on August 14, 2008. The $34 million deal gave Logitech its first in-ear earphones product line.