If you often find yourself in a situation where you need to be aware of your surroundings but would also like to be able to listen to music, then a good set of bone conduction headphones may be right for you.
Instead of going inside or on top of your years, essentially blocking out most other sounds, bone conduction headphones transmit sound thought the bones in your skull. Without getting too technical, here’s the gist: most headphones use air conduction to transmit sound to your eardrum. The eardrum then converts this sound to vibration, which is transmitted to the cochlea—the inner ear.
However, some “sounds” (read: vibrations) are heard directly by the cochlea, bypassing the eardrum altogether. That’s where bone conduction comes in: instead of using air conduction to send sounds to your eardrum, this step is bypassed. The bones in your skull transmit vibrations directly to the inner ear, allowing you to hear the sounds.
Before you decide to jump into the world of bone conduction headphones, however, there’s one thing worth pointing out: because they’re not blocking outside noise like most air conduction headphones do, sound quality won’t be quite as good. And perhaps more importantly, they won’t be as loud either—especially on the lower end. Still, most should be loud enough for casual listening, especially in situations where traditional headphones won’t work.
Now, with today’s science lesson out of the way, it’s time to take a look at some of the best bone conduction headphones available on the market today.
The Best Premium Pick: AfterShokz Trekz Air ($150)
When it comes to premium bone conduction headphones, one name…
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