Portable music has come a long way. We started out with this in the 80’s…   But boomboxes were heavy, plus, they caused a lot of problems for people like Radio Raheem. People wanted to listen to their music while they walked, or rode buses, but having it just blasting from a boombox was disrespectful, noisy, and got a lot of dirty looks if it included profanity. This meant that companies had to design products that could be small enough to carry, but also that could have small, loudspeakers, or headphones, get plugged in to. The results were Walkmans first, and then CD players, and the headphones looked a little something like this.   I’m sure many of you rocked these headphones on car rides back from grandma’s house plenty of times in your childhoods. But they problem was the were so big and uncomfortable. Also if the little soft padding ripped they would rub up harshly against your ears and made listening to the Backstreet Boys far less enjoyable. Then our little minds were blown when the iPod came out. Not only was the mp3 itself revolutionary since it could hold your entire CD collection, but each one also came with its own set of strange little ear buds that popped right into your earholes. Intrusive…maybe. But eventually you had to convert. Anyone caught with the old school headphones was associated with someone who was still carrying around a CD player and thus was not cool enough to sit next to you on the bus while you wore your sleek, stylish, ear buds.

But now there is a new product that everyone must convert to, and it seems slightly backwards. Before we chastise people for wearing the huge headphones but ever since Dre came out with his new Beats, that is what you will see people sporting around campus.


Now these headphones are quality. They have amazing audio performance, block out almost all outside noise, and cost a small fortune. So the same basic principle applies. iPods were much more expensive than CD players and the small ear buds that came with it signified that you enjoyed the finer things and that you had cash to burn, and it’s the same thing with Beats. However, it is interesting how trends can change so quickly and while before we hated the look of huge clunky headphones, after manufacturers increased performances and jacked up the price, all of sudden music just wasn’t as good without them. So what is your opinion? Buds or Beats?

4 thoughts on “

  1. Buds!!! They’re so much more convenient! I wouldn’t want to carry big headphones. With the buds, I can crumble it up and stash it in my pocket haha! I do understand why people like beats – superior quality. You were spot on with your discussion about how now having an iPod meant being a social outcast. I remember when I had a CD player when I was at the airport and everyone else had iPod. Even though we didn’t know each other, I detected (self-consciously of course) silent exclusion. Haha we both had the Biebs on our passion posts!

  2. I’m definitely all about the ear buds. I have never actually used the Beats headphones, but the cost as well as the fact that I think I would just look kind of strange with them both have discouraged me from ever considering to invest my money in them. I think you bring up an interesting point in how trends can change so quickly and styles can make a comeback. With fashion I feel it is the same way–what used to be the norm in the 70’s and 80’s is now becoming “trendy” in modern days. The bohemian style seems to be making a comeback, and with spring just around the corner (if it ever comes), I think there will be tons of girls sporting high waisted shorts, cool fringe crochet vests, and huge retro sunglasses. It’s almost as if retro is “hipster” now. The Beats headphones have the same type of appeal, besides the amazing audio capability.

  3. Buds, but the padding should be comfortable. For on the go, it’s a hassle to carry and store large headphones, not to mention how awkward they look when walking down the street. Buds are easier to store, usually cost much less, and have become a staple of modern music listening. While there is a resurgence of Beats, I think its more of a fad spurred by the hip hop culture, where bass is idolized. I’ll admit, it’s awesome when the bass drops, but I’ll usually jam in my room, not on the street.

  4. I like them beats. But it depends so much on the situation! Each has its own advantages. Buds are great because the fold down really small and can fit anywhere. I normally keep a pair of iPod buds in a small pocket in my backpack for when I find myself looking for a private audio experience in an unexpected place. However, buds don’t always seem to fit my ears. Beats are good when I really want to hear what I’m listening to. I don’t own a pair of the expensive beats but I often wish I did. Also, I would not be above walking around campus with those clunkers on. In my dorm room I tend to use the older style beats. I have a pair that are newer but are not noise canceling. These are comfy and have good sound quality. Plus, I have always been a little nostalgic for my walkman CD player.

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