Unfortunately, the $15 Ear Pollution Plugz lives up to its name, offering audio quality about on par with the stock 'buds included with most MP3 players. On the plus side, the earphones offer a hint of style, an ultracompact design, and a comfortable fit, so they could work in a pinch for those on a budget, but the similarly-priced Griffin TuneBuds are a better option for those who like bass.
On the plus side, the Ear Pollution Plugz earphones are a step-up from stock earbuds in the fit and comfort department; anyone who finds the hard plastic of standard 'buds uncomfortable will consider the Plugz an improvement. Also, the earpieces are very small and canal-style, which offers some passive sound isolation--always a plus, as it lets you listen to music at low volumes.
Plus, the Plugz come in seven color combos--red and black; silver and black; gold and black; pink and black; blue and black; blue and brown; and pink and white--all of which feature a stylish little radiation logo on the earbuds.
On the downside, the Ear Pollution Plugz definitely feel cheap, which isn't terribly surprising given the price point. We'd consider this set "throwaway" tech; that is, you're probably only going to get a couple months out of the earphones.
Sound quality also proved to be rather unimpressive in testing. The Ear Pollution Plugz earphones' main offense is harsh-sounding audio. On more than one occasion, we had to turn down the music because it came through jarring and overly bright. Also, the Plugz offer very little low-end, and the high-end sounds brittle at times.
CNET ON CARS
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