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Bone conduction technology isn't new, but it's gotten a lot better when it comes to use in consumer level headphones over the past year.
In essence, bone conduction headphones sit on your cheekbones and transport sound through your bones straight into your inner ear, bypassing the ear canal entirely. There's a couple of benefits to these types of headphones, but most notably, they make you more able to hear your surroundings and can be great for things like cycling and running near traffic.
Since starting Headphone Critics, we've had the chance to test a bunch of different headphones. This list is our picks for the best bone conduction headphones we've tested thus far.
According to our tests, the best best bone conduction headphones are the Aftershokz Air. These ultralight headphones offer some of the best sound quality of any pair of bone conduction headphones on the market. They stay in place, and the controls are intuitive and easy to use. Keep reading to see more about these headphones and some of the others we picked.
7 Best Bone Conduction Headphones of 2020:
Great for a wide range of situations, especially working out. You also will have added safety through reflective strips.
High-quality headphones with everything you need. Also features reflective strips for better visibility at night.
The lightweight design is comfortable to be for long periods. You can also connect to Bluetooth.
An ergonomic design keeps the headphones in place without being painful. You can also use them for a wide range of occasions.
A long battery life will make sure they don’t die on you during workouts. You also get a one year warranty.
These headphones allow you to enjoy music as you work out, without worrying about sweat. They are also Bluetooth connected.
Aftershokz have solidified their position as the best brand in the bone conduction headphone market. They're well-known for providing the best bass performance with less sound leakage and vibration than other top headphone brands. What's more, you get to enjoy multipoint pairing and reliable connectivity of up to 33 feet. There are two Aftershokz headphones on this list, and the Air is the newer, lighter version. As far as sound quality goes, these headphones are the best you can get with bone conduction technology at this point.
With that being said, the technology itself has limits, and when you compare the audio of the Trekz air to traditional headphones, the traditional headphones win every time.
People don't buy bone conduction headphones for their good sound quality. They buy them because of unmatched situational awareness. Unlike traditional headphones, Trekz Air headphones allow you to hear background noise. So, if you're a jogger or cyclist and need to listen to what's happening around you, these bone conduction headphones give you that capability.
The controls are easy to use, and the headphones themselves are lightweight and stay in place. Not to mention, the Trekz Air will help you maximize your day as it boasts about six hours of battery life, along with a 10-day standby time. If you're in the market for a pair of bone conduction headphones, these are the best of the best on the market right now.
If you want a pair of bone conduction headphones, you are going to see Aftershokz bone conduction headphones on all the lists of must-haves. This brand is known for premium bone conduction headphones that are designed to fit all of your needs, even if you don't know you need it yet.
At just over an ounce, the Aftershokz Trekz Titanium headphones are a lightweight titanium design that wraps around the back of your head for a more secure and comfortable fit. It also shares a resemblance with the Aftershokz Trekz Air, along with an IP55 rating to protect your device against light rain and sweat. Plus, it's designed with titanium alloy, thus making it more durable than other models. The headphones are also flexible so you won’t feel like your head is being squished.
Aftershokz utilizes PremiumPitch and LeakSlayer technology to allow for greater frequency range and no worries about the audio being heard by others. You get to enjoy that deep bass, while also having a dual noise-canceling microphone. That means you get high-quality audio, without worrying about interference. Bluetooth connectivity also makes it easy to make calls.
Just like the Aftershokz Trekz Air, the Trekz Titanium leaks sound and doesn't isolate any background noise. However, it's still a viable alternative to other bone conduction headphones. Generally, it's an ideal option for street sports as it allows ambient noise through.
Because of their open-ear design and construction, most bone conduction headphones don't produce quality sound, especially when using them in noisy environments. But this is where Tayogo bone conduction headphones shine. If you want to enjoy music as you work out, but don’t want to miss out on the bass, Tayogo has you covered. The deep bass capabilities and secure fit make it easy to get into your music without worrying about the headphones causing you to miss out. What's more, this pair delivers relatively loud volume, thus providing excellent sound quality than other bone conduction headphones. A built-in microphone and Bluetooth connectivity allow you to make and take calls hands-free.
These headphones have a similar design to Aftershokz headphones, so if you've used the Trekz Air or Trekz Titanium before, you'll know what to expect with the Tayogo bone conduction headphones. They come in three different colors and are easy to use for casual use, work or exercise. You can also rest assured that the headphones will stay in place as you go because it hugs your head and right behind your ears for the best overall fit.
You’ll also love the long lasting battery life – each side of the headphone has a built-in 200mAh lithium battery that only takes two hours to charge and gives you as much as six hours of continuous usage. Overall, the Tayogo proves to be a reliable daily partner in all your communications and listening experience, whether you’re at the gym, traveling or on the go.
The Akaso Aero bone conduction headphones are designed to brave the elements of outdoor sports and exercise. Akaso utilizes an ergonomic design in their Aero bone conduction headphones to make sure you get a comfortable fit for long periods of use. This helps to reduce the amount of pressure on your head like you get with all types of headphones. Its open-ear design ensures that you enjoy your music without missing any surrounding voice. This keeps you safe and comfortable during outdoor exercises. In addition to the comfortable design, you also get 33 feet of range between you and the device you are using.
These bone conducting headphones are also sweatproof and IPX5 certified to protect your gadget from sweat, dust, and water splash. So you can feel free to feel the burn without worrying about the headphones sliding or malfunctioning. And of course, you have Bluetooth connectivity to make and take calls. With Bluetooth 5.0 technology, the Akaso Aero bone conduction headphones offer a reliable 10m wireless range, so you'll get higher quality signals and faster transmission speed.
Unfortunately, the Akaso Aero bone conduction headphones come with a proprietary magnetic induction cable. This means that you won't be able to charge your headphones with any USB or micro USB charging cable. Another downside is that these BT headphones aren't completely waterproof. You can't use them for diving or place them in water for an extended time.
Like other headphones on the list, Yamipho bone conduction headphones are perfect for sports and other outdoor physical activities. Whether you are running, walking, playing sports, or just want to relax and listen to some music, these wireless bone conduction headphones will stay in place. The ergonomic design keeps the headphones where they are placed, no matter how much you are sweating or if it is raining.
Yamipho wireless bone conduction headphones rely on dynamic magnetic HiFi grade technology to provide superior music quality. They also use microphone noise reduction technology that makes calls clearer and offers less sound leakage. These headphones are ideal for long-term wear as they're IP65 waterproof to resist sweat and rain. Plus, their titanium alloy and ABS materials make them lightweight and durable. They boast a built-in 240mAh lithium battery that allows you to enjoy continuous playback time of up to nine hours and a 10-day standby time.
You can make and take phone calls with Bluetooth connectivity and workout without worrying about wires tangling as you go. What's more, exposure to loud noise and strong wind won't affect your communication thanks to the headphone's excellent sonic performance. There is a one year warranty if you have any problems with your product. They will repair or replace your headphones if something goes wrong, so you can feel secure in your purchase.
If you are looking for wireless bone conduction headphones that will work for your exercising and professional needs, while still saving money, you should try Arndox. Specially designed for sports, these bone conduction headphones are IP56 waterproof to resist sweat and light rain for outdoor activities like cycling, running and jogging. Each side of the headphones comes with a built-in 170mAh lithium battery. With only two hours needed to fully charge your headphones, you then get 20 days of standby time with five hours of playtime, which is incredibly impressive when compared to other regular headphones. You can charge the Arndox headphones from your car after a workout session, from the laptop through a USB port, or plug it into an adapter and use a wall outlet to charge it.
Arndox Bluetooth headphones are lightweight and they don't easily fall out irrespective of the type of strenuous exercise you're engaged in. Unlike ordinary earphones, they work by vibrations, transmitting sound through your cheekbone to the cochlea, thus preventing hearing impairment and other ear problems. As true wireless headphones, Arndox headphones feature the latest Bluetooth V5.0 technology that provides faster pairing and a stable connection. You can now free yourself from cable mess and stream audio and music directly from your smartphone or tablet via secure Bluetooth connectivity.
There is also a range of 49 feet between your headphones and the device you are connecting to. The design is waterproof and is all black to make it sleek and professional. This means you can easily make and take calls without needing to take your headphones off every time it rings. Most users like this pair of bone conducting headphones because they're easily pairable with other devices. Additionally, the automatic pause and built-in microphone make hands-free calling simple. Arndox provides a 356 days warranty and a 60-day hassle-free return policy, meaning your purchase is risk-free.
If you want to have music while you work out, but don’t have a lot of money to spare, you should consider these headphones. They are sweatproof and provide you with high definition stereo grade sound, while still being good for those with tight budgets. The headphones can connect to Bluetooth and makes it easy to play your songs on your phone, without having to worry about wires getting in the way. You have a range of 33 feet from your device to move around if you prefer not to carry it on you. Meanwhile, enjoy its high-quality HD stereo sound for the best audio experience!
Better listening experience than in ear earbuds and over-ear headphones; these headphones offer top-quality sound without damaging or pressuring your eardrum for maximum comfort. Compatible with Android, iOS, and other mobile devices, the Huasiru bone conduction headphones offer a faster and more efficient connection. They come with a built-in 180 mAh battery that you can charge in just an hour to receive six hours of continuous playback time and ten days of standby time.
The Huasiru headphone also boasts an open ear design to give you the best of both worlds – immerse in your music while still being aware of your environment. And, its waterproof, ergonomic design protects your headphones from light rain, and keeps them in peak condition. With the Huasiru brand, you get great design, high quality audio and better safety and health for your hearing. Plus, it comes with a solid frame that ensures security around your head during workouts and a microphone that enables easy access to phone calls.
How Bone Conduction Headphones Work
Because bone conduction headphones are not as common as standard headphones, a lot of people don’t understand how they work. The best way to truly understand how these headphones work is to understand how sound travels into your inner ear or the cochlea and allows you to hear the music.
As we know, sound travels via the air. It goes through the air into your ear - outer ear, middle ear, and finally reaches the cochlea. Once there, the sound vibrations send a signal to your brain that tells it you are hearing something.
Bone conduction headphones work in an interesting fashion because the sound travels through your facial bones and straight into your inner ear. The headphones just sit perfectly atop your head in order for the most effective sound to travel through your facial bones and into your ear. This technology is also being used with surgically implanted hearing aids. So, users with hearing damage will benefit the most from these types of headphones.
In essence, bone conduction headphones operate by vibrating against the cheekbone and upper jaw bones. The vibration sends notice to the inner ear letting them know sound is being sent. To achieve this, they rely on a transducer that converts sound waves into vibrations before sending them through the facial bone to the cochlea. The sound wave is then transformed into electrical signals before being sent to your brain. These types of headphones are great for people with hearing deficiencies because they are very good at reproducing a sound that is true to life because of the way they are designed.
While sound quality and sound leakage is important when choosing headphones, there are other features in bone conduction headphones that make them worthwhile.
What to Look For In The Best Bone Conduction Headphones
Traditional headphones transmit sound directly into your ear canal. Wireless bone conduction technology offers a new experience that regular headphones don't provide. They come with plates that rest right on top of your cheekbones or jaws, projecting sound to your inner ear and bypassing your eardrum and ear canal. When buying bone conduction headphones there are specific things that you should look for, such as hours of playtime on a single charge, standby time, and waterproof rating. Other factors include;
Comfort is one of the main points of a good pair of bone conduction headphones. Because they sit on top of your head and outside of your ears, you want to be sure that they are on the comfortable side as opposed to being entirely uncomfortable. Unlike in-ear headphones, you won’t have to deal with a small ear bud going inside of your ear. This makes none conduction headphones a bit more comfortable.
You want your headphones to stay in place while you are wearing them. You are looking for a pair of headphones that not only has good battery life and seamless connectivity but also will be comfortable through any situation.
The main reason that someone dives into buying headphones is to listen to your favorite things - music, podcast, ebook. Whatever it is you are going to listen to you are going to want a sound quality that matches that need. With bone conduction headphones, you are going to receive a sound quality that is much different than that of “noise canceling” headphones.Bone conduction headphones are specifically designed to keep noise out of the eardrum area and in the cochlea area only via your skull and jaw bones. Remember, these headphones won't deliver the same audio quality as in-ear headphones. So, for a richer, more detailed, and sharpest sound quality, earbuds and headphones perform better than bone conduction models. Some people may find that the sound quality of bone conduction headphones will take a little getting used to at first. But overall, most people agree that it will be well worth it in the end.
The right style of headphones will give you your desired look to complement your choice of fashion. With bone conduction headphones, you are attempting to be the best you that you can be. Why not allow the headphones to send the messages as well.
There are a variety of styles available for you to choose from. You can choose from slick and subtle headphones that don’t look so obvious. Alternatively, you can grab a pair of brightly colored neon headphones that will scream for attention and fit any vibrant attire.
Durability is one of those things that will let you know how far you can “beat up” your headphones before they will become useless to you. Normally, bone conduction headphones are being purchased for outdoor activities. With high intensity activities comes high impact and results. Accidents happen and you want to be sure that your headphones are not a casualty of the process. Bone conduction headphones that come with added strength and stability will save you a world of trouble by being strong enough to not break down when something happens.
Who Needs A Pair of Bone Conduction Headphones?
Owning a pair of bone conduction headphones is a great option for many people, especially people who want to listen to music while still being able to pay attention to their surroundings. Those who suffer with hearing loss or other ear issues will benefit the most from bone conduction headphones as they have helped many be able to listen to music or other things via headphones once again where traditional headphones failed.
If you have normal hearing but are active in sports, a bone conduction headphone could be a good option for you. If you are someone who runs long distances or bikes often, bone conduction headphones will keep you aware of your surroundings, like traffic, so you can remain safe while doing what you enjoy.
It is also nice to use bone conduction headphones while you are working. You are able to still know what is going on in your office while being comfortable with what is flowing in and out of your ears.
Bone conduction headphones are a fantastic innovation in our society today and offer a great alternative to traditional headphones. They allow those who are suffering from hearing damage to take part in listening to music again. Meanwhile, it is a healthy alternative for those who worry about inner ear damage. We hope that this guide allows you to find a pair of bone conduction headphones that fit your needs and style. Bone conduction headphones are life changing and we hope your choice changes yours.
One thought on “Best Bone Conduction Headphones For Running, Cycling & More”
I was wondering why you did not list the Aftershokz Aeropex, which is the latest offering of Aeropex with IP67 rating against water and sweat damage, plus Bluetooth 5.0.