Aftershokz Wraparound Sport Headphones with Bone Conduction Technology

Review Category


3 Stars


The bone conduction headphones made by aftershokz have many applications where one must still have virtually unobstructed hearing: cyclists, joggers, folks who are blind or visually impaired using audio devices for anynumber of reasons, or people who simply want to listen to music privately yet still be able to hear what is happening around them.  I would most certainly not recommend these for the average audiophile.   Perhaps I'm the wrong kind of bonehead since, regardless of position, I get mostly midrange.  However, I fall into the blind category and use a talking gps to get the same information our sighted counterparts take for granted. I have the model with the microphone which allows me to answer my IPhone and still use the built-in Voiceover program, which all apple devices have by default, to manage any of the phone functions as required and I don't loose any of the speech as one does when not using headsets. Be warned that you may need to adjust to the new concept and slight repositioning of the sound sources is a key factor in improving the audio.  While I hope for a better design from some manufacturer in the near future (hopefully aftershokz since they treat their customers so very well) they fit the purpose for which they were purchased.  I do find the present design a little clunky though I like the fact that the mike hads some cable between the headphones and microphone.  The cable from the mike/battery box is long enough for the tallest person; I stick mine down my shirt and bring it at belt level since that's where my IPhone lives inside it's ballistic case.  One can quickly detach the mike to take a call and speak quietly; the mike seems to provide good quality audio.  The battery, unfortunately not user replaceable, is included in this little box which also contains the on/off button and answering button; there is a clip for attaching to some article of clothing, such as a collar and the clip is not hard on the garment.  I see no need for an on/off switch since that function could be sensed by a chip which would automaticly turn on the headset when plugged in, and off when disconnected.  The buttons themselves can barely be felt and I intend to get some "lock dots" to make them more tactile.

For the sake of multi-device usage, an additional short cable is provided to accomodate phones which might have different wiring for their mike-headset plug; no need for this extra cable when using the IPhone 4S.  I believe the same holds true for all apple products.  The package includes a relatively useless carying pouch which has only a small strip of velcro holding it closed which allows the included USB adapter to easily slide out.  Mating pouch-length magnetic strips would be much better and a belt-loop is very sadly missing.  To charge the headset, you simply plug the jack into the USB adapter and attach it either to your computer or in my case, the charger which came with my IPhone.  I've used them for as much as 15 hours without a charge, then did so so they wouldn't crap out in the middle of something important.  You wear this headset by placing the band around the back of the head and hooking it over the ears, something like putting on glasses backwards.  This model would have done better to have that band as thin as the arms on glasses since it seem to contain no electronics.  Due to the present bulk, some folks may find that, in combination of required glasses, there ears look a little like some car doors about to open.

My ideal set would of course be bluetooth with a mike which one could move close to the mouth to avoid having to talk louder which would also help eliminate background noise for the caller.  When not in use, it might be stored magneticly on a metal portion of the headband.  Further, my dream set would have the two stiff multi-directional swivels near each driver for more precise adjustments.  Storage bulk would be greatly decreased were such a set to have a way to make them flat, unlike the model I own.  A customer-replaceable battery is an absolute MUST!!!

Devices Accessory Was Used With



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Submitted by David Woodbridge on Sunday, July 22, 2012

I use these ear phones as well. Work very nicely with VoiceOver on both my Mac, and all my iOS devices. Only thing that concerns me is loosing the little usb charger for the ear phones, but I leave it mainly in one of my iOS device chargers. Works well with my iPod nano, particularly with the FM radio. I know its great that you don't have your ears blocked by in ear phones. However, sometimes I feel just as distracted if I am concentrating on the audio, and not really listening to what is going on around me.