If there is one thing I am prepared to lecture/rant/bore anyone about it is Apple earphones. So let's get this out the way: they're awful and potentially dangerous and in an ideal world we should all have these...
Custom fit earphones are the holy grail of sound isolation, comfort and - since you don't need to blast the volume to make up for all that bled audio - safety, but their costs could hit the £1k mark, until now. In a partnership with bespoke audio experts ACS (Advanced Communication Solutions), the friendly chaps at Etymotic have launched the first personalised earphone programme for iPod and iPhone users and boy, judging by what I see on the tube every day, do you lot need it!
The union sees users able to purchase Etymotic's top notch hf2 earphones (for my money still the best dedicated iPhone buds out there) with a custom fit voucher redeemable at any one of 300 approved ear impression outlets. From here owners simply require a 15 minute appointment and within a few weeks your very own moulded silicon buds will be in your possession.
"People are listening to their iPhones and iPods more often and for longer periods of time," said Etymotic worldwide director of consumer products sales, Michael Shaver. "Active users such as athletes and business travellers have extended needs. Most Etymotic customers can achieve a comfortable fit with the array of ear tips we include with our products, but the hf2 custom•fit delivers the same level of comfort that performing musicians require during live performances."
The 'Etymotic hf2 Custom Fit' range goes on sale from 28 April in black, red and blue finishes and will also be available from Apple stores both online and on the high street. The price? Here's the killer: the custom fit voucher costs just £90 to redeem while the hf2s themselves retain their £99 RRP.
So if I see any one of you out there still wearing those infuriating white Apple earphones come May there'll be hell to pay...
Update: Existing hf2 owners should know the custom moulds are compatible with your earphones so Etymotic recommends you contact ACS directly if you'd like to get your own bespoke buds.