I am on the ever continuing quest to find the perfect headphones. I have never been a big fan of the bulky over the ear headphones. Standard ear buds are uncomfortable to me. For several years I practically lived attached to Sony MDR-J10’s of various color, but, in the high noise environment of NYC, the cars, trains, and subways, they didn’t have nearly enough sound isolation. I have tried a few different pairs of ear buds that offer moderate sound isolation without getting too expensive. While I may end up biting the bullet and getting a pair of Shure E2C‘s, my latest set is the Sony MDR-EX71SL/WK. It has taken a while to get used to get and to them, to figure out how to put them in for the highest comfort and best isolation, but, once you get used to them, they sound quite good and offer quite a bit of sound isolation. The “buds” are small enough to be comfortable for extended war and they have good bass and good treble. I like ’em. I not not sure if they will be prove to be loud enough in all situations, but, they sound good, are comfortable, and cost about half the price of Shure E2C’s. As with any sound isolating headphone, or any earplugs, you have to get used them. When you walk you can hear your steps. When you chew you can hear it – kind of strange. One good (or bad thing) about the Sony MDR-EX71SL/WK is they come with a short cord and an extension if you need something longer. Since I am now using the iPod Remote Control, it is nice to have the shorter cord.