Thursday, February 16, 2017

Product Review: Aftershokz Sportz Titanium Headphones

It's time for another product review!

Product: Aftershokz Sportz Titanium Headphones

I was very excited to try out these headphones because I have not had the best of luck with ear buds while running.  The Aftershokz headphones were a huge upgrade for me in two ways:

1) The design of the headphones is such that ear piece cradles around each ear and they are connected around the back of your head/neck so they stay put while running;

and

2) The ear pieces do not actually go in your ear.  Rather, they rest on your cheekbones.

Wait.

WHAT?!

Let's back up to when I actually opened the headphones box.  I didn't look at any pictures.  I didn't read the insert.  I put them on and headed down to my treadmill.  I tried putting them in my ear like regular ear buds and was having all sorts of problems.

I hit stop on my treadmill and went back to consult the packaging.

This is when I had a HUGE "DUH" moment.

The whole point of these headphones was NOT to go in your ear.  They work by "bone conduction technology" which means that sound vibrations travel to your inner ear, bypassing your ear drum.  Once I had the headphones on my cheekbone, as intended, they were awesome.  I couldn't believe that they actually provided great sound quality.

The purpose of utilizing this technology in a headphone is that you can also be more aware of your surroundings.  This is a great feature for me whether I run outside or inside.  For example, the other night my husband had a meeting so I was home with the kids.  After they were in bed, I went down to our treadmill to run and because I cannot be on a treadmill without something to listen to, I fired up a podcast but could still have some indication of if they woke up.

Outside, these allow for greater awareness of traffic, which is helpful for me as I have to run about a mile on a busy street to get to any of my regular running routes.  Also, I feel more confident having more sound awareness because I periodically have those "Is someone behind me" moments.

Of course, the trade off of this is that you are not blaring music and disconnecting 100%.  I imagine that my eardrums are happier making this trade off.

The headphones that I tested were corded, which is my preference since I run with a first generation iPod Nano.  (No, I am not kidding.)  The cord didn't bother me as much as my earbuds cord did because they have a little clip that you can adjust and clip on your shirt/bra/jacket so it isn't bouncing and hitting you.  A feature I did NOT test out (because, NANO) is that there is a noise canceling microphone piece with a play/pause/skip button right at your chin level.  Therefore, if you run with your phone, you can easily take a call. Since I put the iPod in my back pocket, I did like having the easy ability to skip tracks.

The other thing to keep in mind is that the headphones have a power switch and have to be charged. The charging is easy - you connect to your computer via a USB cord which is provided.  My first round of use was quick because I was forgetting to power them off when I was done with a run.

My husband recently started running on our treadmill and using my old earbuds with the Nano.  He had the same complaint about the earbuds falling out of his ear.  Being a kind, loving and generous wife (!), I let him test out the Aftershokz Sportz Titanium headphones.  Once he got used to the fact that they weren't in his ear, he really liked them and now uses them for his treadmill runs.

All in all - the Aftershokz Sportz Titanium headphones received two thumbs up in our house!

If you are interested in checking them out, you can go to this link to read more, as well as other reviews.  The headphones are $59.95 and you also get a free stainless steel water bottle with purchase through this link.

Disclaimer: I received a set of Aftershokz Sportz Titanium headphones to review as part of being a BibRave Pro. Learn more about becoming a BibRave Pro (ambassador), and check out BibRave.com to review find and write race reviews!  All opinions are my own and the links within this post do not provide any incentive to me personally, nor does your purchase of the product benefit me personally.

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