The best bone conduction headphones are not designed to totally block out the outside world. They’re meant to allow you to listen to music or podcasts while remaining aware of the sounds around you.

They’re designed for those who don’t want to plug their ears with earphones but still want to hear decent sound quality. As a result, the best bone conduction headphones are ideal for use in crowded areas or when participating in outdoor activities.

What is the mechanism through which bone conduction headphones work? Essentially, it is a technique that utilizes transducers to transmit vibrations via your cheekbones and jaw up to your inner ear. Your brain then begins analyzing the sound vibrations, converting them to the content streamed through the headphones.

While bone conduction headphones are ideal for fitness enthusiasts looking to increase their awareness of their surroundings, they can also be handy in any situation when you need to hear a mix of your own music and ambient noise, such as when strolling along a crowded street.

The following are our top recommendations for the best bone conduction headphones.

 

Aftershokz Aeropex

Tech Reviews - AfterShokz Aeropex - Tech News

  • Weight: 26g
  • Water resistance rating: IP67
  • Battery life: 8 hours
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The Aeropex is the flagship model in the AfterShokz line. It features a small and light design, as well as a moderate improvement in sound quality over competing bone conduction headphones.

They’re 30% smaller and 13% lighter than the company’s Trekz Air headphones, and they come with an IP67 water-resistance certification, making them ideal for exercise and use in the rain.

Despite their slim form, they have two physical volume controls and an increased water-resistance rating due to the use of a proprietary charging system. Dual noise-canceling microphones are also included for those occasions when you need to take a call.

On the audio front, AfterShokz has tweaked its approach of delivering audio to the ears to boost bass performance and provide less vibration and sound leakage than the brand’s previous headphones.

The bass and clarity have been slightly improved, but the difference is evident, and the battery life has been increased to eight hours, with the same quick-charge capability as the Trekz Air.

 

Aftershokz Trekz Air

Tech Reviews - AFTERSHOKZ Air - Tech News

  • Weight: 30g
  • Water resistance rating: IP55
  • Battery life: 6 hours
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The AfterShokz Trekz Air packs a punch in terms of functionality and audio quality at a substantially lower price.

Although they are not as tiny or as light as the Aeropex, they do feature an IP55 rating, making them suitable for sweaty exercises. Their unique wraparound titanium frame distributes their 30g weight evenly, ensuring they’re easy to wear and keep in place.

The headphones connect through Bluetooth and offer volume settings and a mute button to quickly and easily turn off the music if you need to hold a conversation.

The sound quality is comparable to that of bone conduction headphones, although they will struggle to be heard in more crowded places. Due to the possibility of experiencing some of the tickling sensation associated with bone conduction at maximum volume, they are best worn at moderate volumes.

The Trekz Air features a six-hour battery life and a quick-charge option that provides an hour of listening time in just 15 minutes.

 

Tayogo Bone Conduction Headphones

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  • Weight: 35g
  • Water resistance rating: IP55
  • Battery life: 6 hours
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At $40, Tayogo’s bone conduction headphones are significantly more affordable than its competitors. While they lack some extra features and are not waterproof, these are sturdy and reliable headphones for the price.

Numerous users praise these headphones for their ability to stay securely in place while exercising. Overall, the sound quality and balance are excellent, albeit they may provide a minor tickling feeling when operated at high volume. These can last up to 6 hours on a full charge, a few hours less than more expensive models.

While some bone conduction headphones are incompatible with glasses, some have been built specifically for those who need to wear them. The volume and power buttons are conveniently located and easy to use.

While these are not high-end, Tayogo has built a solid pair of inexpensive headphones that benefit from bone conduction technology without the outrageous price tag.

 

Pyle Bone Conduction Headphones

Tech Reviews - Pyle Bone Conduction Headphones - Tech News

  • Weight: 40g
  • Water resistance rating: IPX6
  • Battery life: 2-3 hours
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Pyle’s bone conduction headphones are entirely waterproof, IPX6 rated, and they come at a reasonable price. Pyle’s Bone Conduction Headphones may be a good choice for those who have a hard time dealing with fragile devices.

This pair can be used at maximum volume for up to 3 hours and has a standby time of 240 hours. The 4.1 Bluetooth technology has a range of up to 35 feet and can be easily paired.

The durable design helps keep them in place on your head — and reduces the likelihood of breakage due to accidental drops. They are certainly not the lightest headphones out there and the audio quality falls short of AfterShokz. Nevertheless, they are quite sturdy and include a one-year warranty.

 

Vidonn F1 Titanium

Tech Reviews - Vidonn Bone - Tech News

  • Weight: 36.8g
  • Water resistance rating: IP65
  • Battery life: 8-10 hours
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Vidonn is a Chinese startup founded in 2013, and their F1 Titanium offers a great alternative to major brands.

The F1 headphones are comparable in terms of durability and comfort to the AfterShokz Trekz Titanium for all active sports. The sound isn’t quite as good as the AfterShokz line, and a stronger level of bass would help.

Both the CVC and noise-reduction technologies compare favorably to those offered by more expensive models. Additionally, the F1 is sweatproof to IP55 standards.

In general, for bone conduction headphones priced around $70, the F1 Titanium features many of the same characteristics as pairs costing more than $100. What’s missing is a carrying case and a sound that’s sharp, clean, and bass-filled. Vidonn offers a one-year limited guarantee, whereas AfterShokz gives a two-year limited warranty.

 

Aftershokz Xtrainerz

Tech Reviews - Aftershokz New Xtrainerz - Tech News

  • Weight: 30g
  • Water resistance rating: IP68
  • Battery life: 8 hours
  • Storage: 4GB
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The Xtrainerz is the only set from AfterShokz that has an MP3 player and can be used as waterproof swimming headphones.

They share the Aeropex’s thin, lightweight design, and their increased IP68 water resistance means they can withstand being up to two meters underwater for 30 minutes.

With 4GB of storage, you can drag and drop different file formats like MP3, FLAC, and AAC, and they match the Aeropex’s battery life of eight hours.

The Xtrainerz makes a superb underwater sound and provides outstanding clarity when submerged. However, due to the lack of Bluetooth connectivity, you will be unable to stream music via apps or make or receive phone calls.

 

H2O Audio Sonar

Tech Reviews - H2O Audio Sonar - Tech News

  • Weight: 141g
  • Water resistance rating: IPX8
  • Battery life: 7 hours
  • Storage: 8GB
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The H2O Audio Sonar are waterproof bone conduction headphones that securely attach to your swimming goggles and send sound directly to your auditory nerve without the use of earplugs (although you still can).

The buttons are large and have prominent marks, making them easy to operate with damp hands and switch tracks by feel.

Unlike many submersible headphones, the H2O Audio Sonar also supports Bluetooth music streaming — albeit the range of Bluetooth underwater is limited. Because the signal is only around four inches wide when the receiver is underwater, you’ll need to attach your smartwatch to your goggles (streaming from a phone is not possible).

While having another option is beneficial if you frequently use your watch to stream music, the Audio Sonar’s big 8GB onboard storage should be more than enough for the majority of swimmers.

 

Zulu Exero

Tech Reviews - Zulu Exero - Tech News

  • Weight: 28g
  • Water resistance rating: IPX5
  • Battery life: 6 hours
  • Storage: 8GB
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Zulu Audio is a maker of out-of-ear audio systems that provide high-quality, safe listening, particularly for outdoor activities. And Zulu Exero is one of the company’s top bone conduction headphones at the moment.

Unlike some bone conduction headphones, which lay directly on the user’s cheeks, the Zulu Exero rests on the upper portion of the user’s cheekbones. This brings it much closer to the ear, allowing you to hear the sound more clearly while still hearing your surroundings.

A drawback with the majority of bone conduction headphones is that the volume is typically low, or that when turned up, the vibration on the cheek becomes unbearable. Zulu Exero’s design overcomes this issue by ensuring that you can hear your music loud and clear even at its lowest volume setting.

Additionally, these headphones have a simple in-line control that allows you to perform nearly any task. With a single click, you may play/pause, boost the volume, mute the microphone, or even answer calls and access your favorite voice assistant.

 

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