Etymotic HF5 review | Speaker Authority

Etymotic HF5 review | Speaker Authority
5 (100%) 1 vote

Etymotic HF5 Review

In this Etymotic HF5 review, we will go into the details and give an overview of its features. Not only that, but we will analyze reviews to show the pros and cons of this product. Throughout our research, we found these headphones to be a quality pair that those looking in the high-ranged price should most definitely consider.  They have excellent noise isolation, which is definitely a great option for those trying to block out  sound on noisy public transportation, or perhaps even to block out the nearby roadway traffic.


Price level:



Durable cord-Kevlar-reinforced cable provides great durability.

Noise isolation-Highest documented noise isolation out of any of the earphones or headphones around today. These headphones have 35 dB – 42 dB noise isolation (this depends on which eartips are used).

Frequency response-20 Hz-16 kHz.

Excellent drivers-AcuuDrivers result in a top performance with precision matched, perfectly balanced armature drivers.

Fantastic sound accuracy-More than an 85% response accuracy from the 20Hz-120 kHz range.

Great filters-AcuuFilters help to protect the drivers against earwax and debris. They are even user-replaceable for ultimate convenience.

Eartips-The headphones come with a variety of AcuuFit eartips for ultimate comfort and fit. The tight seal helps provide the best noise isolation in the market.


Stereo plug-The 3.5-mm stereo plug is a standard size plug so you can insert it into your normal devices, such as phone and mp3 player.

Public Opinion

We sifted through hundreds of user reviews to find out what consumers thought were the best qualities and worst attributes. Once we meticulously went through these, we found out what the most mentioned aspects were. We realize that product descriptions can only do so much to help you decide if a product is right for you or not. The real way to discover if you will enjoy a product is if you find out what other people’s opinions were on it. In this way, you can get the most realistic view. It is better to know exactly what you will be getting than for it to be a surprise. Surprises can be fun, no doubt, but when it comes to buying things, you do not want any bad surprises. Through our analysis below, we attempt to present as fair and as balanced of a view as possible. This way you know what the true positives and negatives are.


The Good

Sound isolation

  • Many reviewers mentioned the sound isolation. The sound isolation was definitely the most praised aspect of these earphones. It was noted as extremely effective. In fact, some felt it was almost too effective since it was so easy to get caught up in the music, podcast, or other media they were listening to. These are a great option for those trying to block out unpleasant sound while on public transportation. This is also a great feature for those who live in noisy areas near construction zones or busy roadways. Those working with loud tools, or who often do yard work with noisy mowers and weed wackers will definitely enjoy these. The Etymotic Research HF5 Earphones would make a wonderful gift for a student living in noisy dorms who is trying to focus on their studies.

Sound quality

  • Users reported crisp, clear sound that they were well pleased with. Some reviewers found that they needed wear in time before the earphones reached their full sound potential, so it is a good idea to wait before you judge their quality. Many mentioned that the bass was not overdone. Unlike many mid-range headphones, the Etymotic Research HF5 Earphones produces more balanced sound. It has a large range and very accurate frequency responses. The mids and highs were especially praised.


The Bad

Eartips length and comfort

  • Some consumers found the eartips to be too long. Others found the style to be uncomfortable, although some did get used to them after a while.

Tricky eartips insertion

  • A few found inserting the eartips to be tricky to put in. It requires both hands to properly insert them. These are especially difficult the first few times, as it is a learning process. The reason they are somewhat difficult to put in is because they need to block out outside noise. Videos online can help if you struggle to put them in.


  • There were some reviews praising these earphones for gentle bass, saying that it was not overdone like on many other sets. However, other reviewers disagreed, instead declaring the bass was weak. Truly, it comes down to a matter of taste. This set focuses more on balanced sound, not bass. These are best for those loving the details in music. There is crispness and clarity.


Great Sound Isolation

These are an excellent choice for someone who likes to have earphones that block out surrounding noises. Because these are so great at sound isolation, they are perfect if you love getting lost in music. Sometimes it is relaxing to shut out the outside world and find a calm center in beautiful sounds. These would work especially well on noisy places like a plane, trolley, or bus, where the surrounding sounds may be harsh and annoying.

Etymotic Research HF5 Earphones FAQs

What colors do these headphones come in?

  • You have the options of black or cobalt blue.

Do these headphones work well for exercise, or do they tend to fall out?

  • If you use the proper ear tips, they will stay in well.

How much does the sound leak on these earphones?

  • Sound leakage seems to be minimal.


The Verdict

These are fantastic earphones for those who like to shut out the outside world once in awhile. Because of this, these are great for travelers who commute on noisy places such as trains, planes, or busses. It is also a wonderful choice for connoisseurs who prefer balanced sound to overly heavy bass. The beautiful highs and mids, along with the great range and precise frequency response, make these excellent earphones.


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