Altec Lansing Bliss Platinum Earphones: Strong Enough Sound for a Man, But Size-Balanced for a Woman [Review]



Review by Kelly Keltner

Before encountering Altec Lansing’s women-specific Bliss Platinum earphones ($70), I had never considered the idea that my ears might be too feminine and precious to handle having a larger earpiece forcibly shoved into their delicate canals. Now I know that, like many things, most earpieces are made for men and we poor, sweet ladies must go about life making do with too-big things. Altec Lansing hopes to solve that issue by giving ultra-precious lady ears a much-needed rest from all the bigness with the Bliss Platinum.

The Bliss Platinum comes with three eartips (extra small, small and medium) that are specifically designed for women’s ears, as well as a pair of double-flange eartips for improved noise isolation. After thoroughly testing each set, I still found myself opting for the big, manly, double-flange tips. While the lady-safe eartips were a bit more comfortable, it still felt as they weren’t cutting out as much outside noise as a larger eartip. Oddly enough, because of their smaller nature, there seemed to be a bit more shoving required than normal to achieve the proper fit, but since this is possibly a concept that most women are familiar with, this probably won’t be too much of an issue for most pairs of lady ears.

Cosmetically, the earpieces are already gunning for the “I want my ear canals to look pretty while listening to my music” market with earpieces that look a bit like diamond ear studs (if diamond ear studs were made out of plastic). Admittedly, I did experience a moment of “ooh shiny!” upon seeing the look of the earpieces. They are, well, cute.

Luckily for the Bliss Platinum, Altec Lansing didn’t sacrifice audio quality for a female-friendly design. Once I had the earpieces positioned properly in my ears, all my unladylike music sounded just as rich and full as it did in any of the Bliss’ tough, rugged, manly-man counterparts. Most importantly, the bass didn’t sound watered-down as it sometimes does with other IEMs.

The cloth-covered cables do leave the cable tangle-free just as the sales copy promises. However, they are also very attractive to cats — more so than any other cable I’ve ever owned, so make sure to hide these from your feline friends.


Overall, the Bliss Platinum provides a quality audio experience and does seem to be a bit easier on the ear canals than other IEMs, leaving your canals open and ready for any audio you wish to insert into them.

[xrr rating=80%]

  • imajoebob

    I was surprised when my sister told me she didn’t like her iPod earbuds because they were too big for her ears, and I was surprised I didn’t realize that ear size is (somewhat) gender influenced.  Duh.

    I really like the cloth cords.  A great retro look.

  • tiresius

    Got news for earphone manufacturer– people come in all sizes, and can even have different size ears on one side or the other.
      But do most earphone manufacturers even give lip service to this?  Not really.  Except for those of include different sized bud covers (e.g. small, medium, and large).  There are even some who use one size in one ear and another size in the other.  One of the many reasons I’ve never used my Apple earbuds.  Go figure.  Duh!

  • aga

    Not just ladies who have small ear canals, I’m a guy who also finds most buds are too big.

    If it was’nt for the faux diamond finish, I would consider getting a pair for myself, but I don’t want to look like Elton (heaven forbid)!

  • iHate_Is_Back

    Last time I checked to my knowledge ear canal size had nothing to do with gender. Most of these companies design their plugs using a master plug that’s based on thousands upon thousands of people’s ear canal measurements that are then extrapolated and used to form a general across the board master plug designed to fit most people. The thing is no matter how many peoples ear canals they measure most people will never get an exact fit because everyone’s ear canal is different. Some companies like Sony have gone the extra mile by packaging extra rubber tips in order for the consumer to have a better chance of finding a better fitting plug for their buds. That’s why so many people aren’t crazy about plugs because even if they do fit well enough and isolate well enough they’re usually pretty uncomfortable to wear for long periods of time. That’s why over the last few years some people have paid the extra money and have opted for custom IEM’s which offer by far better isolation and comfort. If you have the cash a custom IEM can’t be beat and there’s even good entry level priced customs available now.

  • jriley23

    I’ve used these and there great for running. Don’t slip like most others.