Thursday, April 23, 2015

Highway robbery

How can one explain the need for earphones? Need. Operative word. A couple of days ago, as I was grumbling about how I need to buy a new pair of earphones, mum cut into my soliloquy, asking “Why do you need earphones?” Out of habit, and primarily out of mental reflex, I rolled my eyes and pretended I did not hear her. I had figured that it was a rhetorical question anyway.

For  days, I had frequented the mall, particularly the stores that sold audio equipments, in hopes that I would be able to find a decent pair of earphones that didn’t cost as much as Apple’s proprietary ‘Earpods’. Now, the Earpods has an excellent sound quality , but it just costs way too much. Read highway robbery. I am very particular when it comes to audio quality; carefully noting the values of frequencies (high and low), sensitivity, and impedance. But let’s not get technical here. I can blame this pernickety attitude towards audio quality on my dad who’s very keen on sounds, and my very first Creative mp3 whose earphones had superb quality.

Although I did find reputable brands such as Philips, Samsung, and Sony, and they didn’t cost nearly as much as the Earpods, its specs didn’t quite meet the preference I had. If you can get your hands on a pair of earphones that has an impedance value of 32ohms, take good care of it. Take a fucking good care of it; treat it like a newborn baby. Seriously. On the market, the values of sensitivity and frequencies on most earphones have little to no differences; the impedance, however, can differ from 16ohms to 32ohms. Apple’s Earpods has an impedance of 23ohms on paper and it costs 1,990. A few months ago, I bought a great pair of Samsung earphones for 600 pesos that surprisingly had 32ohms for impedance. But I lost it between pining over a guy and having had too much beer on a Friday night.

So why do I need earphones?
1. I listen to music a lot. I don’t think it’s possible for me to get through the day without music.

2. There are times when I just want to drown out the noise around me and drift away into the world inside my head. And in that world, it is a punishable crime to listen to teen movie actors with nasal problems singing “You don’t know me, you don’t know me” shit.

3. It keeps creepy old guys from attempting to have conversations with me. Although there are those who are just too stubborn, or perhaps too deluded, to take a hint. Holy shit, you’re as old as my mum.

4. Have you ever gone to a party where you don’t know anyone at all? Well, except for the host who, unfortunately, seems to have forgotten he invited you, and has therefore gotten lost with his other friends in a corner talking about NBA or, worse, Manny Pacquiao. I don’t mind such tragic situation, trust me, as long as there’s food and beer, and, yes, I have my earphones on.

5. It saves me the pain of having to endure way too much EDM at the bar while I’m waiting for my friends. Play that darn dance music all you want, and turn up the volume while you’re at it; Lana Del Rey is keeping my company while I’m chugging down beer, thinking ‘Where the fuck are you guys?’

6. When there’s a certain song  I really like, I’m going to play it on repeat for days, sometimes weeks; we all know how annoying that can be when it’s being played on loud speakers. Thank God, I’m not a DJ, yeah?

This morning, I bought a pair of Apple Earpods. I walked out of the store feeling like I was robbed. Apple’s trademark highway robbery feel. But hearing that good sound quality blaring in my ears for the first time in six days was like diving into a pool at the end of an insanely hot day.