Having taken another look at the headphones I agree that they don't reflect so much in real life but they definately reflect. Because the mesh on a real headphone is much finer it appears more of a grey colour than shiny metal. It's not so easy as just turning the reflectivity on the attribute editor down though, I have used just one shader to texture the earphone, as there are 3 differently reflective materials that make each bud I am relying on diffuse, alpha and reflectivity maps so I'd need to change them in Photoshop first.
As far as rendering goes, my machine isn't slow (AMD Opteron 165, 2Gig RAM, QuadroFX540) but because of the render settings that I'm using (FG Rays 2000 with secondary bounce enabled, Raytrace Shadows at 20 Rays and 40 Depth Limit and the rest at production quality with a resolution of 1600x1200 at 144 pixels per inch) it still takes the fat end of an hour to render (I wish I had a machine that could deal with it in 4 minutes!!).
Cheers for your thoughts, I will get it sorted when I'm not so busy with uni stuff.