Koss don't remember the model number but I got mine for $14.95. They completely seal off the ear canal and because of construction will stick in your ear good enough to pull a full-face helmet on over them.
Bose are nice but the db is rather low for spirited riding. The Koss' are good but don't fit under my helmet in such a way as to NOT cause pain. The Shure's were the ticket for me. I also bought a "mini amp" at Best Buy for around $30 or so to get the sound up for the "really" spirited rides.
This is exactly what I use. Cheap (about $15 bucks for the Koss earbuds and $1 for the foam earplugs) and very effective. Just drill a hole down the center of the foam earplugs, remove the earpieces from the Koss phones and glue the foam plugs in place. They fit snugly in your ear, block out all the extraneous noise and sound great. I have a stereo in my Eglide with hi-performance speakers, but these things are 10x better for a fraction of the price.
I have the Bose IE and while they sound good (a lot of people disagree with me on this...) they do not isolate at all. Great for some things, not so great for riding.
I also have Shure E2c and SE210. The E2c are somewhat large for in helmet use, and the included tips are not ideal (foams work well but don't last very long, "flex sleeves" are not that comfortable for me). Sound pretty good though, especially with a few mods. The SE210s are much smaller, sound better, and come with better tips - I would recommend these of the ones I listed. I have never worn any of them while riding though, however I do wear earplugs (Etymotics) if I'm on the highway for any extended period of time.
From the comments on the etymotic, I would probably go with them if they satisfy one final requirement: the lack of sound fatigue may be good, but how comfortable are they... foilrat mentioned one version (the ER-4 in particular) stick out quite a bit... Is this the same with the other etymotic earphones?
I use a full-face helmet and like it on the tighter side... can anyone give me an experience-based comparison between the comfort level of the Shure vs. the Etymotic earphones when wearing all day with a helmet?
btw... thank everyone for all the replies so far! It has been very helpful!
I just posted below about probably choosing the etymotic earphones because
1) I figured that results may vary when modifying your own items both in the initial craftsmanship and eventual durability, and
2) I wanted to just go ahead and buy superior quality and not have to worry about upgrading later when I want better... you know, spend $100 now (or maybe $150 in the etymotic case) instead of spending $20 and then eventually shelling out the $100 later on anyway.
However, if I do get the etymotic earphones and end up tearing them up, I'll either have to go with the cheap option above, or the simple option (just regular ol' earplugs - no music).
I guess my main concern was I wanted something that I could just buy and plug in... no worries... Thanks for the input... who knows... I may just decide I can't part with $100+ and revert to the cheaper option...
I do plugs and and the helmet speaker set up from my HJC Chatterbox, so no experience on speaker-plugs. I highly recomend a Boostaroo power amp in line with the MP3. Saves battery power on the player. Runs on 2 AA, fits in my jacket pocket along with my player.
You should be aware of the distinction between 'noise blocking' and 'noise cancelling' The Sure is noise blocking, it utilizes passive resistance to soundwaves by blocking the ear canal except for the sound port of the bud. I use the Sure E2c. Never had 'em on a bike but they work well enough in the back of a C-130 so I think the noise blocking is adequate. I use the foam sleeves, the rubber ones don't fit me well.
Noise cancelling implies active electronic technology which transmits soundwaves to cancel incoming waves at certain frequencies. The Philips look like they are worth a try, the buds look like they perform some noise blocking to augment the noise cancelling technology. $20 is cheap and you can return 'em to wal mart if they don't work well enough.
The Bose do not appear to be noise blocking (evidenced by the open mesh on the back which allows outside noise into the ear canal) or noise-cancelling. Probably not a good choice.