Shure's aural black magic

So, you've got a black iPod nano and a PSP (a good start), but your demanding ears are still after some noise-cancellers? Shure's new black E Series c

So, you've got a black iPod nano and a PSP (a good start), but your demanding ears are still after some noise-cancellers? Shure's new black E Series could be just the thing.

The three models (E2c, E3c and E4c) still offer the same audiophile quality sound, but have a crucial lick of black paint with chrome highlights that make them an ideal Christmas present for your black iPod nano.

They're also a bespoke, commuting-friendly replacement for the curiously-coloured white headphones that come with the PSP.

Shure's in-ear trio work differently to cans like the Sennheiser PXC-250s, which use noise-cancelling technology. Instead, the E series twist into your ear to provide a noise-proof seal. Like Etymotic's ER-6 isolators, we've found they work particularly well on long plane journeys, and on trains where one-way mobile phone chatter about shopping lists can cause untold pain.

The £79 E2cs are the entry-level model and were given a five-star thumbs up in Stuff's noise-cancelling headphones test.  The lighter E3cs (£149) have WideBand Microdriver technology that apparently helps deliver extended frequencies, while the £219 E4cs are strictly for deep-pocketed audiophiles.

Shure will also be launching some I-Series earphones which will double as as a handsfree kit for your mobile or smartphone in Q1 next year.

The E-series are available now from Shure's UK website.