Shure SE115 Noise Isolating Earphones - Shure SE115 Earphones

By Hugo Jobling



Our Score:


Being at the lower-end of Shure's range, the SE115 earphones don't come in quite as comprehensive a bundle as the 'prosumer' models. That said, the package still isn't exactly stingy, including everything I can see the average user wanting. The SE115s themselves feel like they should survive the rigours of regular use, more so than a pair of Klipsch Image X5 earphones certainly.

A soft case - with, for some reason, a karabiner attached - is provided to protect the 'phones in transit. Inside this are three sizes of silicone tips and the same number of foam tips. Last and probably least too is an earwax cleaning tool, for keeping the SE115s pristine.

It's amazing how quickly wax can build up over time; or maybe there's a swarm of bees in my head and I just don't know it. You decide. Either way, I find a fingernail more useful than the dedicated tool for my purposes, but I'm sure someone reading this will disagree.

As ever, Shure's foam is wonderfully comfortable and does a brilliant job of isolating external sound. And as we all know, the more effective a set of earphones are at excluding external sound, the better the audio experience. Furthermore, good isolation also means less audio bleed, which in turn means lower required listening volumes. All that from a simple cone-shaped piece of foam!


May 14, 2009, 6:51 am

where do the shure se102's fit into their range? are they better or worse than these?


May 14, 2009, 7:08 am

I bought a pair of the SE110's for flying and have to say they didn't sound that much better than 2 cheap Phillips noise cancelling earphones previously purchased, used without the electronics on - the hiss was so annoying switched on. also I don't think the sound isolation is that good, they don't mask the hiss of airflow over the plane anything like industrial earplugs/headphones I use for work. agreed they sound much better than bundled earphones but I think I need to try some of the top end earphones to see if they are that good but I could never justify paying that kind of money. p.s. they don't include that stupid airplane adapter, have only flown one airline with just the standard 3.5mm jack plug.


May 14, 2009, 9:02 am

Same question, Shure 115+102=what's the difference?


May 14, 2009, 1:28 pm

Sorry, but mine is the £50-£70 area. I really don't want to spend more than £70 quid for something that I know I'm going to use nearly every day, and wear out the thin wiring before the warranty's up. I hate that balancing the weight of the earpiece forces a trade off with the cable build quality.


May 14, 2009, 2:07 pm

@GoldenGuy: That's precisely my argument for why it is worth spending lots of money on headphones. If it's something you use everyday then they quickly pay for themselves in terms of satisfaction. Unfortunately, if you're like me it also means you become complacent about having them with you all the time and end up losing them but that's really a whole other issue.


May 14, 2009, 2:14 pm

The SE102s aren't as good as these. Whether they're £30 or so 'not as good' I'm not so sure.


May 14, 2009, 2:39 pm

"the shure se 115 fit between the se 110 and se 210 in name and price" that is definitely wrong as I got my se 210's for £60

Luan Bach

May 14, 2009, 6:02 pm

Hugo, where did you get that Baby One More Time cover from ? I think I heard it on an episode of Life and it sounded good.


May 14, 2009, 7:32 pm

Andrew - I was talking MSRP at that point.

Luan - Out-of-State Plates (

The cover in Life was Travis, incidentally, but it's not as good a version as FoW. Bowling for Soup have a good rock-ier version which I like, too.

Luan Bach

May 14, 2009, 10:04 pm

Thanks Hugo. I'm watching a bid on ebay for the cd at the moment. :-)


May 15, 2009, 3:27 am

spotify it ;)


May 15, 2009, 4:09 pm

I see your point Ed and I certainly won't argue with the differences in sound quality. I trade up on my mp3 player earphones ASAP. (I currently have some humble CX-400's, though I did have CX-95's before that, that I quite liked.)

No my point was that in my experience, there isn't a big enough improvement in the build quality, and I end up wearing out the 30 quid phones just as quickly as the £60-£70 ones, just before the warranty is up. I should also add that it's not like I drive over them or anything! For some reason earphone wiring just hasn't been perfected in my view - at least with anything in the mid range that I know of. Perhaps trading up to the beginning of the top end might see some build quality improvements, but I have my doubts.


May 17, 2009, 1:58 am

It still applies as the MSRP for the white se 210's are £99.99 as are the pink se 115's.

I personally can't see the market for these earphones to be honest, even taking into account the other colours, as if they do indeed slip in between the se 210' and se 110's in price as in theory they should, but probably won't to it being a new model, which suppliers usually charge more for than older models, then there will be an actual price difference of £10 max which when spending £50-£70 on earphones isn't really an issue. Also the black ones look the same as the rest whilst the other colours would merely attract attension to the unfashionable (large and strange over ear cable method) earphones themselves.

I personally would prefer them to make a cheaper version of the se420's - same quality, to replace my se 210's which whilst superb for the


May 17, 2009, 2:00 am

opps err PS my se 210's are good but do lack bass, quite noticeably at time, however judging by numerous reviews (including yourselves) the se 420's do step it up a notch or two, which would be just right.

Hans Gruber

December 23, 2010, 2:20 am

Advanced MP3 Players are selling these in pink colour only for £39.99 (you can get a further 10% off using voucher code avlover). Even if they are pink, it's still a bargain. Functionality over um, looking a bit, um, girly? Gonna paint mine and walk around with black ears instead...

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