The travails of buying
Muse #354 - buying a feeling
What is it about headphones and me? I wrote about fixing my old wired Bose headphones a while ago. But this time it is not about me. It is my daughter. The little not-so-little one.
All of us at home have several earphones and Bluetooth ear pods in these multi-device-centric living days. But my daughter wanted to find a pair of over-the-head wireless noise-canceling headphones. And what a complex journey it was. Especially in these pandemic times.
When one needs to find a pair of good headphones that work for you, essentially you need to feel it. Ah, once you get that right feeling, then that’s the one for you. Seems like finding a lifemate is easier.
It started with trying out the existing products that we around the house. The Sennheiser wired didn’t fit well, the metal design at the top is too hard on the scalp. Then the Bose Quietcomfort headphones. They were too big for her smaller than average head. So, all options at home got ruled out.
What about the Urbanears Plattan 2 Bluetooth On-Ear Headphone on Amazon. This had great reviews and did not break the bank as her budget was only $100. Came in a couple of days. Right at first blush, it was rejected for being too heavy and the fact that it did not fit well. Had to go back. And the necessary returns hoopla process.
In parallel, another model we saw that seemed well was the Wyze headphones from Amazon US. So, I sneakily ordered it from there. And well, this one did not fit too. Too big. And since it costs a bunch to return cross-border, I decided to write off the $75 investment (sic) and keep it as an additional pair for myself. This journey is just getting started.
A list of online searches narrowed down a bunch of further possibilities. And reading Consumer Reports evaluations also helped. But where do we try out more than about 10 of the models to see what fits well? And works well too.
Just a few days before Christmas, we decided that after 3-4 weeks of headphone perusing, we need to put an end to it. So the two of us bit the bullet, donned our N-95’s and snuck into the local Bestbuy. And an hour of trying out a variety of different over-the-year Bluetooth and noise-canceling models from Sony, Bose, JBL, Jabra, Apple, Beats, Sennheiser, Samsung, Audio Technica, Skull Candy, Jlab, Koss. And then after all these failed, the list was exhausted. In spite of checking out products thrice the budget amount. We were running out of luck.
What about kid headphones from JBL, Jlab, and Jabra - a little plasticky, colorful, and cheap - but will any of these work? No, no, and no.
And finally, only one was left on the list to evaluate - the Jabra 45h. And it wasn’t in stock, neither was there a demo piece to try out. Should we buy it on BestBuy.ca and get it shipped? They did take returns well into the new year and even it was opened. But only the blue was available online and not the black that she wanted.
One last shot buying it on trustworthy Amazon again. And we got it before Christmas day. And boy oh boy, joy oh joy. It worked like magic. The price was right. The weight was right and the fit was right. A match made in heaven. Sometimes miracles do happen.
A few weeks later…
My daughter now came to me and wanted help in buying a one and a half size chair for her bedroom. And we started making a list - price cap, material, feeling, returnability of product, and this went on…
How do we try out chairs on Wayfair and Amazon before we buy? We are stymied. Oh boy, again. The story continues…