This Day On The Street
Continue to site right-arrow
This account is pending registration confirmation. Please click on the link within the confirmation email previously sent you to complete registration.
Need a new registration confirmation email? Click here
Stocks Under $10 with 50-100% upside potential - 14 days FREE!

3 Great Headphones For Business Travel

NEW YORK ( MainStreet) -- Every wonder why those men and women who actually drive the plane -- you know, the pilots -- wear those honkin', industrial-strength earmuffs and microphones? It's not a fashion statement. Those monster headsets keep the din of plane flight out. And quiet and productivity in.

Until recently, probably the best way to get audio tranquillity on the go was with a set of pricey and bulky so-called active noise reduction cans. Those units emit crafty bits of noise that cancel out the roar of the jets and the shrieks of miserable infants.

Next time you travel, put yourself in first class with small in-ear headsets such as the NuForce NE-700M.

No more. Thanks -- yet again -- to smartphones such as the Apple (AAPL) iPhone and Motorola (MOT) Droid, dozens of makers are vying to make high-quality headsets that fit snugly inside your ear canal, offer surprisingly good microphone quality for use with a mobile device and isolate your ears from the outside world.

In-ear headsets must fit properly or they can be both painful and dysfunctional. But get the right device and you will enjoy an audio experience that turns even the harshest plane flight into a joyride. And you can do it all with something that fits in your coat pocket.

On a recent trip to Michigan, I got time to consider three of the latest in-ear models:

Spider International realvoice headset ( $90 at
Who knew the folks at Spider -- a decent audio/video cable company -- had it in 'em to make such a great pair of headsets? But they do. For my money, this company's realvoice headsets are the biggest story in in-ear headsets right now. For $90, you get a great-sounding pair of headphones, a mic that can work with an iPhone and remarkable isolation from the outside world. While less than true first-quality sound, this is as close as you can expect for the money. Remember, you must take the time to fit the different size earplugs to your ears, which can be, uh, hygienically dubious. But get past the ear-goo factor and you can expect some real R&R on your next redeye.

NuForce NE-700M ( $75 at Amazon)
I'm not sure whether it is the aluminum body, the titanium drivers or the company's attention to detail, but the NuForce NE-700M is a $75 headset that not only sounds pretty darn good, but feels like it won't fall to pieces in your pocket. Factor in the slick look, attractive bronze finish and high-quality smartphone mic and, for me anyway, the NuForce is about the sharpest-looking and sounding in-ear headset on the market.

AKG K 390 NC ($200)
I am not -- nor will I ever be -- a big active noise reduction headset fan. The electronics almost always add bulk and cost. I can't stand noodling with all the switches involved. And worst, I can hear the active noise reduction in the music itself. But if you absolutely, positively must have a little switch that turns the outside world off and on, the AKG K 390 NC is worth a close listen. The 390 is exactly what you would expect from one of the world's most storied audio and headphone companies: top-quality construction, an elegant control module that controls several iPhone functions and a top-flight microphone that should work to business telephony standards. Yes, you are paying twice as much as what you spent on your iPhone. But for first-quality active noise reduction headsets, the AKG are probably worth it.

>To submit a news tip, email:


Follow on Twitter and become a fan on Facebook.

This commentary comes from an independent investor or market observer as part of TheStreet guest contributor program. The views expressed are those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of TheStreet or its management.

Select the service that is right for you!

Action Alerts PLUS
Try it NOW

Jim Cramer and Stephanie Link actively manage a real portfolio and reveal their money management tactics while giving advanced notice before every trade.

Product Features:
  • $2.5+ million portfolio
  • Large-cap and dividend focus
  • Intraday trade alerts from Cramer
  • Weekly roundups
TheStreet Quant Ratings
Try it NOW
Only $49.95/yr

Access the tool that DOMINATES the Russell 2000 and the S&P 500.

Product Features:
  • Buy, hold, or sell recommendations for over 4,300 stocks
  • Unlimited research reports on your favorite stocks
  • A custom stock screener
  • Upgrade/downgrade alerts
Stocks Under $10
Try it NOW

David Peltier, uncovers low dollar stocks with extraordinary upside potential that are flying under Wall Street's radar.

Product Features:
  • Model portfolio
  • Stocks trading below $10
  • Intraday trade alerts
  • Weekly roundups
Dividend Stock Advisor
Try it NOW

Jim Cramer's protege, David Peltier, identifies the best of breed dividend stocks that will pay a reliable AND significant income stream.

Product Features:
  • Diversified model portfolio of dividend stocks
  • Alerts when market news affect the portfolio
  • Bi-weekly updates with exact steps to take - BUY, HOLD, SELL
Real Money Pro
Try it NOW

All of Real Money, plus 15 more of Wall Street's sharpest minds delivering actionable trading ideas, a comprehensive look at the market, and fundamental and technical analysis.

Product Features:
  • Real Money + Doug Kass Plus 15 more Wall Street Pros
  • Intraday commentary & news
  • Ultra-actionable trading ideas
Options Profits
Try it NOW

Our options trading pros provide daily market commentary and over 100 monthly option trading ideas and strategies to help you become a well-seasoned trader.

Product Features:
  • 100+ monthly options trading ideas
  • Actionable options commentary & news
  • Real-time trading community
  • Options TV
To begin commenting right away, you can log in below using your Disqus, Facebook, Twitter, OpenID or Yahoo login credentials. Alternatively, you can post a comment as a "guest" just by entering an email address. Your use of the commenting tool is subject to multiple terms of service/use and privacy policies - see here for more details.
Submit an article to us!


DOW 18,030.21 +6.04 0.03%
S&P 500 2,081.88 -0.29 -0.01%
NASDAQ 4,773.4720 +8.0480 0.17%

Brokerage Partners

Rates from

  • Mortgage
  • Credit Cards
  • Auto

Free Newsletters from TheStreet

My Subscriptions:

After the Bell

Before the Bell

Booyah! Newsletter

Midday Bell

TheStreet Top 10 Stories

Winners & Losers

Register for Newsletters
Top Rated Stocks Top Rated Funds Top Rated ETFs