How bone conduction headphones work – and why you should try them

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Headphones have come a long way over the years and it is now possible to buy a pair to match and compliment any musical style. As with the more regular models, the Bone Conduction headphones are a neat variation on the theme and will be of particular interest if you’re a fan of fitness in the great outdoors. In some scenarios they are even beneficial for certain types of hearing impairment.

Bone conduction headphones are placed just above your cheekbones so that the vibrations pass through your jaw, bypassing your eardrum. Instead of using vibrations moving through the air, sound is passed directly through the bone to the cochlea as is the case with traditional headphone designs.

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An obvious benefit is that nothing is being inserted into your ear canal, but the real appeal with bone conduction headphones is that you can continue with your outdoor activities, while also being able to hear what’s around you. What’s happening near And, as mentioned, the fact that the sound waves are passing through bone instead of your eardrums may also make conduction phones a potential solution for some people with hearing disabilities. Indeed, the idea was considered by headphone manufacturers before early hearing aid designs made use of this technology.

Thinking about getting a set of bone conduction headphones? We’ve rounded up the best deals on our top models right here.

comfort level

Another positive with using bone conduction headphones is that, because they are mounted on the side of your skull, nothing uncomfortable or intrusive in your ears or in your ears. Earbuds have become the phone of choice for many, but they can be intrusive and not quite as hygienic as you would know if you ever owned a pair. Reusing earbuds for long periods of time can become an unpleasant experience, even if the sound quality still deters you from putting them off.

Likewise, many of us prefer the standard old school headphone design, which sits on your head and over your ears. While this style of headphones is as popular as ever, their downside is that they can be heavy to wear and aren’t always suited for outdoor activities. The way they spin can be annoying in the extreme if you’re doing anything more than a light jog.

They also cut out outside noise, which is a good thing in many ways, but not so hot if you want to know what’s going on around or behind you. Bone conduction headphones however are not a perfect solution and they can cause fatigue like any other headphone if you wear them for too long.

Even the best headphones you can buy don’t always suit everyone. Bone conduction headphones are no different and ideally need to be tried on first to make sure you stick with them. Buying headphones is a subjective thing and everyone has different needs, which is probably why the headphone market is as big as it gets.

be alert

However, unlike many traditional headphones you can buy, the real advantage of bone conduction headphones is that your ears aren’t isolated from what’s going on around you. In fact, because bone conduction headphones don’t sit on your ears or in your ears, they allow you to hear other sounds. This is obviously going to be very useful if you’re out and about in the field, but still want to know who or what you have.

It is also possible to purchase bone conduction headphones that have been specifically designed to suit a wide variety of activities. Therefore, it is possible to purchase Bone Conduction waterproof headphones designed with swimming in mind, along with more articulated models for running and outdoor activities such as cycling.

Some bone conduction headphones are specifically designed for swimming

It’s important to look closely at the specifications of bone conduction headphones though. While many are sweat-resistant, you’ll need to buy a pair that’s specifically designed for swimming to make sure they keep working once you’re in the water.

There are also models that are built with a greater communication angle in mind, so if you need to regularly make and receive calls when you’re out and about, a pair of bone conductive headphones with plenty of talk time capability I am worth considering.

ear-friendly

Another bonus of bone conduction headphones is that they are less likely to damage your hearing. It’s easy to overlook or ignore the harmful effects of playing music too loud, especially when it’s right next to your ears. In fact, like many diseases, the negative effects are noticeable only after the damage has been done. Bone conduction headphones minimize the impact on your inner ear, simply because they are externally attached.

However, bone conduction headphones can still be problematic for your hearing if you turn up the volume, even if they don’t sit right in your ears. As is the case with most things, it’s a matter of everything in moderation, so use your bone conduction headphones appropriately and they should return the favor for your hearing.

a sound option

Bone conduction headphones have a few drawbacks. Users often report that audio quality is affected as a result of having or not having them in their ears. This is a fair trade-off though, as any loss of audio quality is compensated for by allowing the user to hear other things. A pair of bone conduction headphones seem like an obvious item of running kit to consider if you’re out for a jog and want to keep your wits about you.

The same can be said if you are in any other scenario where it is important to keep an ear for any extraneous sounds. Many people like to listen to music while working, which is not such a big deal if you are sitting at a desk and working from home. However, if you work in a situation where listing music is allowed, but you still need to be alert to any dangers, or managers may be at large, bone conduction headphones are worth considering. can be.

Which brings us neatly to the best bone conduction headphones in 2022 guide we’ve compiled that features a hand-picked selection of the latest and greatest models you can buy. Unsurprisingly, the Aftershockz brand (or Shokz as they are now known) is one you’ll hear most often in relation to bone conduction headphones. They have a great selection to suit a variety of budgets, but you can also get solid offers from Vidonn, Tayogo, and H20, among others.

However, the options are less plentiful than what you’ll find in the rest of the best headphones on the market. The same goes for the best wireless headphones and best wireless earbuds. Still, it makes perfect sense to use bone conduction headphones for some audio needs.


This article is part of Nerdshala’s Get Fit in 2022 series – a collection of ideas and guides to help you get off to the right start to your New Year’s health goals, whatever your current level of fitness.

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