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Just had my mind blown - Bone conduction headphones.


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11 minutes ago, Crossy said:

A spot of background.

I have to change my mode of commute for various reasons (mostly $$$) so I'll be on the train rather than driving.

Of course this is mind-bendingly boring so listening to music (actually BBC Radio 2) is required.

I can't use earbuds as I don't like the sweaty, blocked feeling and I tend to get ear infections anyway, dont want to increase the risk.

I have a very nice set of closed-cup phones which I use at home (they block the screaming from Madam's Thai soaps whilst I enjoy the cricket), but having seen how dorkish others look when wearing similar on the train ...

I also feel for my fellow passengers and wish to avoid them having to listen to a tinny version of Ken Bruce (I need to listen at high volume due to hearing loss).

 

Enter bone-conduction headphones.

They purport to be everything I need, nothing in the ear (no blocked feeling and you can hear the enviroment), almost invisible (so you don't look like you just stepped of the flight deck) and there's no tinny version of your music broadcast to all and sundry.

 

After some research I bought a set of Aftershokz Aeropex from the Aftershokz store on Lazada. At a splash under 6,000 Baht they don't exactly fit in the "low cost" price bracket, there are rather cheaper (2,500 Baht) options from the same stable but I went for the long talk time (8 hours), light weight (26g) and IP67 water resistance (not quite good enough for swimming but getting caught in the rain isn't an issue).

 

afc0627f556f854417b1cc9b429dd2cd.jpeg

 

So they arrived this afternoon. A bit of a charge (comes with two magnetic charge leads) I paired them with the phone and put on Ken Bruce. I admit I wasn't expecting ultra-fi sound, but I was extremely pleasantly surprised with the depth of the bass, not squeeky. Definitely listenable and they go far louder than I'm comfortable with without any significant sound leakage.

 

Not a technology everyone has come across, but for those of us who like to cycle or jog on our more than somewhat risky roads being able to hear what's going on around you has to be a valuable safety enhancement. Definitely worth a look (ok listen).

 

I bought some for my wife who has the tiniest ears known to man, as she was always complaining about not being able to find comfortable earbuds which were her size. I tried them myself, its a bit disconcerting at first, being able to hear everything in the room, plus the sound from the earphones, also a tiny, tickle of a buzz against the ear if you turn the volume up full, but great tech, love them.

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Must admit to never having heard of bone conductor ear phones.

I do tend to listen to music on my daily skytrain commute to Silom every day and normally, go for the “stepping off the flight deck” look with Bluetooth headphones. I do feel a bit of a helmet but this sounds promising.

Will give them a go. Cheers for the review. 

 

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I like to listen to audiobooks while swimming for 90 minutes every day, so, I have tried every type of swimming MP3 player I could get my hands on.

I was recently intrigued to discover the swimming version of these bone conduction headphones, the AfterShokz Xtrainerz. The Lazada price of around 5,500 THB would be well worth it if the sound is clear and they last for at least a year. Just a pity they wouldn't be able to connect to my Apple Watch via Bluetooth.

My usual (non-swimming) earphones are my Airpods Pro, just wonderful, far better than my Bose QC35 noise canceling headphones.

 

Edited by donnacha
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2 minutes ago, donnacha said:

I like to listen to audiobooks while swimming for 90 minutes every day, so, I have tried every type of swimming MP3 player I could get my hands on. I was recently intrigued to discover the swimming version of these bone conduction headphones, the AfterShokz Xtrainerz. The Lazada price of around 5,500 THB would be well worth it if the sound is clear and they last for at least a year.

 

If the performance of the Aeropex is anything to go by you should be well happy with the Xtrainerz. Obviously you are still going to get the glugging noises in the ears unless you wear earplugs as well.

 

The Aeropex has a 2 year warranty, one assumes (dangerous I know) that the Xtrainerz are similar.

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40 minutes ago, Crossy said:

A spot of background.

I have to change my mode of commute for various reasons (mostly $$$) so I'll be on the train rather than driving.

Of course this is mind-bendingly boring so listening to music (actually BBC Radio 2) is required.

I can't use earbuds as I don't like the sweaty, blocked feeling and I tend to get ear infections anyway, dont want to increase the risk.

I have a very nice set of closed-cup phones which I use at home (they block the screaming from Madam's Thai soaps whilst I enjoy the cricket), but having seen how dorkish others look when wearing similar on the train ...

I also feel for my fellow passengers and wish to avoid them having to listen to a tinny version of Ken Bruce (I need to listen at high volume due to hearing loss).

 

Enter bone-conduction headphones.

They purport to be everything I need, nothing in the ear (no blocked feeling and you can hear the enviroment), almost invisible (so you don't look like you just stepped of the flight deck) and there's no tinny version of your music broadcast to all and sundry.

 

After some research I bought a set of Aftershokz Aeropex from the Aftershokz store on Lazada. At a splash under 6,000 Baht they don't exactly fit in the "low cost" price bracket, there are rather cheaper (2,500 Baht) options from the same stable but I went for the long talk time (8 hours), light weight (26g) and IP67 water resistance (not quite good enough for swimming but getting caught in the rain isn't an issue).

 

afc0627f556f854417b1cc9b429dd2cd.jpeg

 

So they arrived this afternoon. A bit of a charge (comes with two magnetic charge leads) I paired them with the phone and put on Ken Bruce. I admit I wasn't expecting ultra-fi sound, but I was extremely pleasantly surprised with the depth of the bass, not squeeky. Definitely listenable and they go far louder than I'm comfortable with without any significant sound leakage.

 

Not a technology everyone has come across, but for those of us who like to cycle or jog on our more than somewhat risky roads being able to hear what's going on around you has to be a valuable safety enhancement. Definitely worth a look (ok listen).

 

Do they help you win at Popmaster?    LOL

Edited by KannikaP
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Just now, Crossy said:

If the performance of the Aeropex is anything to go by you should be well happy with the Xtrainerz. Obviously you are still going to get the glugging noises in the ears unless you wear earplugs as well.


Right. It would be interesting to see if they would still be useable with the presumably louder noise from one of those Endless Pool / counter current swimming machines. But, yes, earplugs probably required in both cases.
 

4 minutes ago, Crossy said:

The Aeropex has a 2 year warranty, one assumes (dangerous I know) that the Xtrainerz are similar.


Yes, that appears to be the case. Thanks Crossy.

 

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Just now, KannikaP said:

Do they help you win at Popmater?    LOL

 

Nope!

 

2 minutes ago, Golden Triangle said:

@Crossy how well do you do with Popmaster ? I'm normally lucky if I can get above 10, currently listening to yesterday's Steve Wright, such a funny show at times.

 

I'm lucky to get into double figures, I did once get a 3-in-Ten (Mud hits IIRC).

 

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3 minutes ago, Golden Triangle said:

@Crossy how well do you do with Popmaster ? I'm normally lucky if I can get above 10, currently listening to yesterday's Steve Wright, such a funny show at times.

 

Love it when Ken (or Gary) ask how many points do they think they will score. Oh, in the mid teens they reply. There is only ONE mid teen score ....15

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1 minute ago, KannikaP said:

Love it when Ken (or Gary) ask how many points do they think they will score. Oh, in the mid teens they reply. There is only ONE mid teen score ....15

 

And then they go on to get 39 followed by winning Champion's League at christmas.

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3 minutes ago, OneMoreFarang said:

Interesting. I like to hear your "long term" review maybe after a month.

I think lots of headphones seem to be good at the beginning (especially if we just paid a lot of money for them). But after some time they are uncomfortable to wear or the sound it not so good, whatever.

So please update us when you used them for some time.

 

Wilco, they are incredibly light with just a slight pressure from the headband, should be easy enough to forget you're wearing them.

 

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55 minutes ago, Crossy said:

At a splash under 6,000 Baht

 

How many BTS tickets is that? Should have stuck to driving. 555

 

Did you get the pink ones?

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41 minutes ago, DeepSea said:

I tried them myself, its a bit disconcerting at first, being able to hear everything in the room, plus the sound from the earphones

Just add industrial strength earplugs, et voila 🙂

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Living in Thailand I find that I need headphones that block as much outside noise as possible.

Those phones do sound good though if you are lucky enough to be somewhere without the constant  noise.

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2 minutes ago, VocalNeal said:

How many BTS tickets is that? Should have stuck to driving. 555

Did you get the pink ones?

 

Coming on the train saves 1,150 Baht a week just on road tolls (so paid for within 2 months even without accounting for fuel costs), as to BTS tickets remember who I work for :whistling:

 

Got the black ones 🙂

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1 minute ago, Crossy said:

 

Coming on the train saves 1,150 Baht a week just on road tolls (so paid for within 2 months even without accounting for fuel costs), as to BTS tickets remember who I work for :whistling:

 

Got the black ones 🙂

 

I had a mate with a Spanish wife who worked for Bombardier? signalling. Not sure where he ended up. Reg I think.

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2 minutes ago, fishtank said:

Living in Thailand I find that I need headphones that block as much outside noise as possible.

Those phones do sound good though if you are lucky enough to be somewhere without the constant  noise.

 

They do come with earplugs which sort of negates the nothing in the ear concept.

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I never tried those things but I would be interested to know if they are any use for riding with a helmet on a scooter.

I have some wireless earbuds (cheap ones) that I am pretty sure would fall off when taking the helmet off or even while riding

 

even on the back of one, if you get the chance to try and see if you can hear anything but wind.

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Interesting thankd for teh report  ,how long to deliver as Lazada seem to source local a few dats and China a few months to here recently.

 

Also do they have bluetooth mike so you can interrupt Ken Bruce if someone calls on a linked phone?

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45 minutes ago, RubbaJohnny said:

Interesting thankd for teh report  ,how long to deliver as Lazada seem to source local a few dats and China a few months to here recently.

 

Also do they have bluetooth mike so you can interrupt Ken Bruce if someone calls on a linked phone?

 

Ordered 18th (Thursday) delivered today 23rd.

 

Yes, full call functionality plus pause, play etc etc.

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2 hours ago, kekalot said:

I never tried those things but I would be interested to know if they are any use for riding with a helmet on a scooter.

I have some wireless earbuds (cheap ones) that I am pretty sure would fall off when taking the helmet off or even while riding

 

even on the back of one, if you get the chance to try and see if you can hear anything but wind.

 

The problem is going to be the band round the back of the neck, I think it would interfere with anything but the Thai jelly-mould helmets. A bicycle helmet would probably OK for the cyclists.

 

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A minor bump has occured on the road to audio bliss.

 

The "universal securing protruberances" as supplied with the standard human (ears) are not completely suitable for supporting the Aeropex and mask plus spectacles.

 

Careful logistical planning is needed to avoid cat's-cradle tangles and/or blindness.

 

 

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  • 1 month later...
On 2/23/2021 at 3:12 PM, OneMoreFarang said:

Interesting. I like to hear your "long term" review maybe after a month.

I think lots of headphones seem to be good at the beginning (especially if we just paid a lot of money for them). But after some time they are uncomfortable to wear or the sound it not so good, whatever.

So please update us when you used them for some time.

 

Well here we are about a month later, so as requested, a quick update.

 

I'm still very happy with the beasts, wear all day 6AM to 4PM with no issues. Still sound as good as they did new. Not having to muck about with them to have face to face conversations is a great boon.

 

Battery life is amazing to be honest, managed a week of Ken Bruce plus several hours of Zoom meetings on one charge before a gentle "charge me" reminder. Routine now is to put them on charge in the car, the trip to/from the station (about an hour total) is more than enough to leave them fully charged each morning.

 

Itsy-bitsy issue. They support multi-device operation, and whilst I got them connected to my phone and PC I couldn't get them to work reliably in headset mode on both devices, music plays fine on the PC but couldn't get Zoom to work. Fixed by simply disconnecting from the phone (turn off BlueTooth), turn on PC Bluetooth, doing my Zoom then turning on phone BlueTooth again.

 

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2 hours ago, Crossy said:

music plays fine on the PC but couldn't get Zoom to work

Thanks for the one month later review. Good that you still like it.

 

You should should be able to fix that PC problem in the OS settings and/or Zoom settings. If you always use headphones on the PC then it should be easy. If you use sometimes speakers and sometimes headphones then it can be more challenging. 

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4 minutes ago, OneMoreFarang said:

Thanks for the one month later review. Good that you still like it.

 

You should should be able to fix that PC problem in the OS settings and/or Zoom settings. If you always use headphones on the PC then it should be easy. If you use sometimes speakers and sometimes headphones then it can be more challenging. 

 

Yeah, I fiddled with it for a while, before filing it as "too hard".

 

Works fine when only connected to the PC, it's when in multi-device mode that things go awry.

 

It takes far longer for the other meeting participants to bother logging on than it does for me to swap devices. I invariably spend 10-15 minutes talking to myself before actually getting going.

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  • 2 weeks later...

"Not having to muck about with them to have face to face conversations is a great boon. "

 

Even better when the person talking is boring the <deleted> out of you or talking nonsense you can just listen to the music instead ....55555

 

Appreciated the update, thanks.

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