Doctor's Review: Medicine on the Move

January 20, 2022
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Now hear this

A step in a retro direction

Koss came out with the PortaPros in 1984 and hasn’t messed with them since – not in their look or their technology. That’s how popular they are. People are willing to overlook their retro styling — remember Lost in Space? — because they’re darn good headphones. They feel secure, are comfortable to wear, fold down for travel and offer great sound. One caveat: the adjustable sliders get caught in fly-away hair. $US50 and they come with a lifetime warranty. Available at

The gold standard

Bose's QuietComfort noise-cancelling headphones are luxurious and pricey. If you want the pure sound of silence and no interference when you’re listening to music, expect to pay upwards of $300. The latest, the QuietComfort 15, uses all the most recent technology and run on AAA batteries that have an average 35-hour life. They fold flat, come with a protective carrying case as well as a two-prong adapter for plane travel and an extra cord. $350. Available at

The runner

If you need a set of cans that stay fixed to your head while you project yourself on and off the ground, consider Sony’s latest Active Headphones. At $50, the MDR-AS50G are designed in such a way that the earphones stay secure even without the band over the ear. That said, not all ears are built the same so try before you buy. They’re not ideal for street use – unless you actually like being a hazard to others — you can’t wear just one earbud and they do block out a lot of noise. $60. Available at

Chill out on the cheap

If you want noise-cancelling but don’t want to pay for a set of Bose, Audio-Technica’s ATH-ANC25 QuietPoint may be an option. They apparently block up to 80 percent of environmental noise and offer good sound quality and portability. Around $US100. Available at

Pssst… Hey bud…

If earbuds are your thing, make them Klipsch Image S4. For around $85, they offer exceptional sound quality. They're also comfortable and come with extras such as a storage box and cleaning tool. These are earbuds for music lovers who respect all five senses; not for the decibel-demented fanatic. Available at

This article was accurate when it was published. Please confirm rates and details directly with the companies in question.


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