Looking to replace an in-ear headset for a gaming laptop


CGA President, Tribe of Judah Founder & President
Staff member
The left earbud on my Plantronics .Audio 480 headset has stopped working. :(

I can use my other earbuds (which I got as a freebie bonus with a pack of razor blades--not kidding, the earbuds are great) and my laptop's built-in mic, but I'd rather have a proper headset. And the Plantronics "Virtual Phone Booth" has spoiled me.

I can't get a standard headset as I almost always have to keep my right earbud out to listen for requests from my wife to help with the baby.

I usually detest in-ear headsets, but the .Audio 480 came with "memory foam" earbud covers that I loved.

I'm tempted to try to grab my X-Acto knife and some electrical tape and try to repair the headset.

If I'm unable to fix the headset, what would you all recommend as a replacement? Remember: It has to be in-ear and work well with a gaming laptop. Memory foam earbud caps and noise cancellation are highly desired features as well.

EDIT: Using the Sony MDR-NC11 noise canceling headphones and my laptop's built-in mic in the meantime. My efforts with the X-Acto knife were unsuccessful. :( But at least I didn't cut myself.
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New Member
I personally haven't used these but I figure it might give you a starting point.

SteelSeries (dedicated gaming accessory company so prices might be steep):
SteelSeries Siberia in-ear headset (w/ microphone)
SteelSeries Siberia in-ear headphone

Razer (Also a dedicated gaming accessory company):
Razer Moray+ (w/ microphone)
Razer Moray Earphones

Thermaltake ISURUS In-Ear Gaming Headset (w/ microphone)

Other than that I can only direct you to this review on Cnet: Best earbuds for less than $100

Oh and if you're in a pinch for cash-- you can't go wrong with Skull Candy

Hope I helped ^^

Abba San

Legacy of Elijah [LoE] - Proud Grandfather
Thanks, Ethan. That is helpful. I'm trying to find a pair of ear-buds, too.

I'm getting ready to take a trip with my new Xoom and need sound on the go.

Tek, keep us posted on your progress.


Active Member
I use the Razor product and love it. I got it for like $30 at Fry's.

It is not memory foam but the sizes on the buds works nicely for me.

The sound is amazing. I heard stuff in WoW that I had never heard before.


CGA President, Tribe of Judah Founder & President
Staff member
I had hoped to find a replacement headset with a adjustable boom mic, but I've searched around and have to find anything similar to the .Audio 480.

I had also hoped to spend no more than I did on the .Audio 480 ($13), but that seems like a fool's hope. Nevertheless, I can't bring myself to spend $35-50 on a replacement 480 after buying the first headset for $13.

For now, I'll stick with my MDR-NC11 headphones (which I bought for $10 from a friend) and my laptop's built-in mic. I thought the mic quality would be significantly less than when I was using the 480, but TeamSpeak users assure me I come through just as clear as I did before.

Side note: The earbud covers that come with the MDR-NC11 are terrible, but the memory foam earbuds that come with the .Audio 480 are fantastic. Fortunately, they also fit the MDR-NC11. w00t!

EDIT: But if I could find that Razer Moray+ for $30 shipped, I think I'd have to spend some gift money and pick it up.

EDIT#2: And thanks to everyone for their suggestions!

EDIT#3: Okay, I have to admit, I'm really tempted to pick up the Moray+ for $34.44 shipped from this eBay auction. That DS adapter would come in handy for Pokemon trades.
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