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The Best Bone Conduction Headphones

Last updated: 1 month ago, Oct. 21. 2020
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    Discover the best bone conduction headphones you can get today.

    Comparison: The Best Bone Conduction Headphones in 2020

      BadgeRatingPriceBatterySweat-
    Resistant
    i
    Higher IPX is better.
    Connection

    AfterShokz
    Aeropex
    The Best Bone Conduction Headphonesbest overall
    More info
    4.6$$$$
    ($120-$200)
    8 hoursIP67
    (IPX7)
    wireless
    Bluetooth 5.0
    AfterShokz
    Trekz Air
    The Best Bone Conduction Headphonesrunner-up
    More info
    4.5$$$
    ($80-$120)
    7 hoursIP55
    (IPX5)
    wireless
    Bluetooth
    AfterShokz
    Trekz Titanium
    The Best Bone Conduction Headphonesbest value
    More info
    4.5$$
    ($30-$80)
    6 hoursIP55
    (IPX5)
    wireless
    Bluetooth
    Vidonn F3The Best Bone Conduction HeadphonesMore info4.2$$
    ($30-$80)
    8 hoursIP65wireless
    Bluetooth
    Pyre PSWBT550.5The Best Bone Conduction Headphonesbest cheap
    More info
    3.9$$
    ($30-$80)
    5 hoursIPX6wireless
    Bluetooth

    Tayogo Bone Conduction Headphones
    The Best Bone Conduction Headphonesbest wired
    More info
    3.9$$
    ($30-$80)
    6 hoursSweatproofwireless
    Bluetooth

    Wireless bone conduction headphones are an exciting alternative to regular headphones. They’re an especially suitable replacement for workout headphones.

    And lately, they’ve gotten better than ever before (thanks to AfterShokz headphones).

    Take a look at the best bone conduction headphones you can get right now.

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      Related:

      Best workout headphones

      Best running headphones

      Swimming headphones

      The Best Bone Conduction Headphones

      1. AfterShokz Aeropex – editor’s pick

      AfterShokz Aeropex bone conduction headphones

      The best bone conduction headphones on the market right now.

      Bone conduction headphones are a relatively new option. As they don’t cover your ear lobes, you can still hear what’s going on around you while listening to music.

      Read the full review.

      Type: Bone conduction headphones
      Back design: Open-air
      Water-resistance: IP67 (IPX7)
      Connection: Wireless, Bluetooth 5.0
      Battery life: Up to 8 hours

      Why Buy These?

      Bone conduction headphones give you perfect awareness of your surroundings as the sound vibrates through your bones instead of eardrums.

      AfterShokz Aeropex have quality, rubbery ear hooks and stay in place while you exercise. They’re designed for a full-on active lifestyle and offer plenty of stability thanks to the hooks.

      Waterproof and dustproof design (IP67) protects them from water and small particles like sand and dust. So, you can confidently use them in places other headphones would die in.

      The AfterShokz Aeropex are the better model from the brand’s previous version, the AfterShokz Air. Compared to these they have a longer battery and are 30% lighter.

      The Bad

      You might not like the feel of the vibrations on your head. It can take some getting used to. Bone conduction headphones also don’t quite compete with traditional, regular headphones in sound.

      The Sound

      The sound quality is definitely the best you can get from bone conduction technology.

      The bass has been improved from the Air model, but it isn’t completely perfect. There are also multiple sound presets to choose from.

      The Verdict

      If you want to keep your hearing unaffected and want the best sound quality available with bone conduction, look no further than the AfterShokz Aeropex (full review here).


      2. AfterShokz Trekz Air

      AfterShokz Trekz Air bone conduction headphones

      AfterShokz Trekz Air are the previous flagship model that has been upgraded with the Aeropex but they’re still a great option.

      Type: Bone conduction headphones
      Back design: Open-air
      Water-resistance: Yes, IP55 (IPX5)
      Connection: Wireless Bluetooth
      Battery life: Up to 7 hours (standby time 20 days)

      Should You Buy These?

      If you’re looking for one of the best wireless bone conduction headphones that beat the competition, then read on.

      The sleek ergonomic design makes them suitable for all situations. They are extremely lightweight. So, you can wear them comfortably for hours, not like conventional headphones.

      On top of a comfortable fit, they are amazingly stable. You can use them for all types of sports, even for fast running. IP55 casing protects them from dust and water, so you’re safe in any weather.

      Nonetheless, they don’t cover your ears, so they don’t offer any noise isolation. Though that comes in handy if you want to run on busy streets and have awareness.

      Also, you get remote buttons to manage your tracks and a good-sounding microphone for calling. You get a decently long battery life too. It can last up to 7 hours. Plus, you can simultaneously connect 2 devices via Bluetooth.

      The Bad

      Small remote buttons are too close to each other, so they might be hard to use if you have bigger fingers.

      The Sound

      Their sound signature is somewhat balanced with a slight lack of bass. Mids are more in front, so the vocals are crystal clear. But if you want to listen to heavy bass music, you might look elsewhere.

      Bone conduction isn’t the best for deep bass, but the Trekz Air provide a more than satisfactory listening experience, with an audio quality that’s great for all kinds of music genres.

      The Verdict

      AfterShokz Trekz Air are remarkably comfortable and stable, have water protection, and decent battery life. These are wireless bone conduction headphones done right, the best in its class.


      3. AfterShokz Trekz Titanium

      AfterShokz Titanium bone conduction headphones

      AfterShokz Trekz Titanium are one of the best bone conduction headphones in terms of value and here are the reasons why.

      Type: Bone conduction headphones
      Back design: Open-air
      Water-resistance: Yes, IP55
      Connection: Wireless Bluetooth
      Battery life: Up to 6 hours (standby time 10 days)

      Should You Buy These?

      If you’re looking for the best-value bone conduction headphones, then Trekz Titanium are it. The older model is still competitive today and costs a considerable amount less than the Trekz Air.

      Their name comes from their design – the neckband is made out of titanium. That’s why these bone conduction headphones are highly durable. You can use them for many sports activities. And, they are stable enough to survive your heaviest workouts.

      Although this AfterShokz headset isn’t waterproof, it has an IP55 rating, which makes it sweat-resistant. This means sweat doesn’t harm them but don’t drop them in water.

      Also, six hours of battery life on a single charge makes them comparable with premium workout headphones.

      The Bad

      There are no remote buttons. You can only manage your music with your device. Plus, they might be uncomfortable if the headband is too loose or too tight (there’s no way to adjust), especially if you wear them for a long time.

      The Sound

      The sound signature is rather balanced, with some bass which is surprising for this kind of headphones. You will enjoy their sound quality with all music genres, while perfectly hearing your surroundings.

      The Verdict

      AfterShokz Trekz Titanium are amazingly stable and durable wireless bone conduction headphones. With an open-air design and a more reasonable price (under $100), these are one of the most popular headphones for runners.


      4. Vidonn F3

      Vidonn F3 bone conduction headphones

      Excellent bone conduction headphones for runners with a slimmer, more colorful body than Vidonn F1.

      Type: Bone conduction headphones
      Back design: Open-air
      Water-resistance: Yes, IP65
      Connection: Wireless Bluetooth
      Battery life: Up to 8 hours

      Should You Buy These?

      These are slightly smaller than their first-gen brother, giving an overall better fit. They’re still very lightweight and made from the same titanium alloy, which ensures excellent durability.

      You can use them during workouts without a problem. With a very high IP65 rating, they can battle both the sweat and dust. Sadly, you can’t use them in the pool since Bluetooth doesn’t work underwater.

      Vidonn also improved on call quality, giving F3 Qualcomm’s chip for eliminating background noise. You don’t have to reach for the charger frequently since these bone conduction headphones last up to 8 hours.

      The Bad

      There is no way of controlling the volume besides using a transmitting device.

      The Sound

      Of course, you can’t expect amazing sound quality out of any bone conduction headphone. However, paired with earplugs, you can make these sound reasonably good. They can be quite full, with good midrange clarity. Although, plugging your ears does eliminate the benefits of bone conduction headphones.

      The Verdict

      Vidonn F3 are an improved bone conduction headphones compared to their popular predecessor Vidonn F1, with all the right tweaks. They fit and sound better, are lighter, and come in different colors.


      5. Pyle PSWBT550.5

      Pyle-PSWBT550.5 bone conduction headphones

      Reasonably priced bone conduction headphones with a high IPX6 rating and an easy to operate side panel.

      Type: Bone conduction headphones
      Back design: Open-back
      Water-resistance: Yes, IPX6
      Connection: Wireless Bluetooth
      Battery life: Up to 5 hours

      Should You Buy These?

      Pyle’s wrap comfortably around your neck and your ears, keeping them in place no matter what you’re doing. An IPX6 rating ensures that no matter how sweaty your workout gets, these bone conduction headphones will still work.

      For more effortless operation, there are multiple buttons located on a side panel. You can even control the volume of the playback, which is something that not many offer. Of course, you can also answer phone calls and skip tracks on the fly.

      Inside there is a 200mAh battery, which boasts an impressive 240 hours or 10 days of standby time. There is no official rating for actual battery life, but you can expect them to last around 5 hours. That is long enough for a good workout session.

      The Bad

      You can’t adjust the fit.

      The Sound

      As with all bone conduction headphones, to help with sound quality, make sure to use earplugs. Overall, there isn’t much bass, but you do hear a decent amount of music to keep you energized during sports activities.

      The Verdict

      Pyre PSWBT550.5 are a decent pair of bone conduction headphones with all the necessary qualities.


      6. Tayogo Bone Conduction Headphones – best budget

      Tayogo Bone Conduction Headphones

      The best budget bone conduction headphones for those who want to listen to music and still hear everything around them.

      Type: Bone conduction headphones
      Back design: Open-back
      Water-resistance: Sweatproof
      Connection: Wireless Bluetooth
      Battery life: Up to 6 hours

      Should You Buy These?

      Bone conduction headphones can be quite expensive, especially for well-known brands. However, you can get these Tayogo’s for under $40. Thankfully, there aren’t many compromises in build quality. You are still getting fully sweatproof rubbery construction, perfect for gym-goers.

      There are control buttons located on the band so that you keep your smartphone in the pocket at all times. You can control everything from volume, skipping tracks, answering calls, and pausing the music.

      Tayogo headphones support Bluetooth connection version 5.0, offering you a reliable connection with minimal stutters. Battery life is also pretty good, with around 6 hours on a single charge.

      The Bad

      You can’t use them if you wear glasses.

      Sound leakage if you drive them too hard.

      The Sound

      It’s quite similar to the top models since they’re all bound to the technology’s limitations. The sound feels a bit distant with minimal low frequencies. Plugging in some earplugs does help, but that is not the point with bone conduction headphones like these.

      The Verdict

      If you need to be always aware of your surroundings and don’t want to spend much money, these bone conduction headphones are the way to go.


      More About Bone Conduction Headphones

      How Does Bone Conduction Headphones Work?

      Bone conduction sends the sound vibrations directly to the Cochlea through skull bones, bypassing the external and middle ear. Once the internal ear receives the sound waves it creates a brain signal so you can hear it.

      It’s a simple technology that uses bone-conducting to transmit sound to the inner ear. Both normal hearing and hearing-impaired people can use it effectively.

      Did you know you hear your own voice deeper than it actually is because bone conducts lower frequencies better than air? That’s why your voice sounds different than you expect.

      Who invented bone conduction?

      Ludwig van Beethoven—a famous composer and pianist—invented it by losing most of his hearing in his late 20s. He bit into a rod attached to a piano to hear music through bone conduction.

      Though, allegedly bone-conducting knowledge has been known before by a physician Girolamo Cardano in the 16th century.

      Can Bone Conduction Headphones Cause Hearing Loss?

      Bone conduction headphones can’t cause hearing loss through eardrum damage but can harm the inner ear (Cochlea) injury if abused.

      So, you don’t have to worry about external and middle ear damage but if used for too long at too high “volume” you can damage your Cochlea.

      Are Bone Conduction Headphones Safe?

      In terms of hearing safety bone conduction stereo headphones are at least as safe as regular headphones if not more. Because you bypass the eardrums and go straight to the internal ear, there are fewer “parts” to damage.

      Also, because your outer ear is completely open to the air, you get perfect environment awareness (no noise isolation). You hear all sounds just like if you didn’t wear any headphones. It’s maximum protection for street runners or any other activity where you need to listen to the world around you.

      And, at the same time, you hear the music in your head loud and clear.

      Can a Deaf Person Hear with Bone Conduction?

      Some deaf people can hear with bone conducting technology. If the eardrums are damaged and don’t send the vibrations to the inner ear (Cochlea), a person can use bone conduction to hear.

      If a person is deaf because of the inner ear or neural problems, then bone conduction isn’t effective. Basically, bone conducting replaces the external and middle ear and sends the sound directly to the inner ear which then sends the signal to the brains.

      Here’s a good explanation of hearing loss and how they test it.

      Are Bone Conduction Headphones as Good as Regular Headphones?

      In terms of build quality, comfort, and fit the bone-conducting headphones are the same as traditional headphones. But when it comes to sound quality, bone conduction is slightly lagging behind.

      You can find good-sounding workout headphones with bone conduction technology but won’t find any audiophile headphones with it.

      The main issue is that these headphones lack rich bass. Open ear design with bone conduction isn’t best suited for that.

      Who is Bone Conduction Best Suited for?

      Bone conduction headphones are for people who can hear normally or have an eardrum-related hearing impairment (difficulties with detecting air conduction).

      If you find regular earbuds uncomfortable, you might test these. The “earphones” don’t go into your ear canal or over your ear but just rest on the outer side of your skull.

      Also, if you’re hearing-impaired and you know your inner ear works normally (conductive hearing loss), then bone-conducting headphones are the best choice for you because you’ll actually hear them.

      Who Uses Bone Conduction Headphones?

      The technology has been mostly developed for the military that uses it for communication on the battlefield where awareness is crucial.

      It’s also extensively used in hearing aids for people with conductive hearing loss.

      Lately, you can now find bone conduction headphones for swimmers and as alternative workout headphones for runners and gym-goers.

      It’s a proven technology that works and offers significant advantages for the right use.

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