If you're reading this, then you've either misplaced the earphones that came with your phone or realized long ago why those tinny, static-spewing things were free. Stellar audio is expensive, but asking about the price tag isn't the only way to hear the difference in quality. Here are the best models on the market for less than $500.
Foldable on-ear headphones are supposed to combine the full-throated audio of full-size "cans" with the portability of earbuds. This rarely happens, but V-Moda's XS headphones succeed where others fail, compressing down to fit in virtually any bag while providing the kind of sophisticated audio profile you'd normally associate with over-the-ear models. Their highlight is in the mid tones, which many headphones overlook, but where the SX seemed to drag vocals out of the audio mix. [$212; v-moda.com]