By bypassing your eardrum to send music through your bones straight to the inner ear, these headphones have come up with a genius idea … but there are problems
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What no earbuds? Trying on the AfterShockz Titanium headphones for the first time is weird. Aimed at the sports market, these headphones loop around your ears and use a static neckband to stay in place. However, the killer app is that they use bone conduction transceivers instead of earbuds to get the music into your brain. Woah …
Look, no buds
In-earphones work by sending sound straight to your inner ear via your eardrum. The AfterShockz Titanium headphones are a little different; two bone conduction transceivers are placed just in front of your ear, at the top of your jawbone. They pass sound through your jawbone straight to your cochlear, bypassing your eardrum. If that sounds rather strange, it also feels very odd at first. But after a while, it starts to be natural. You begin to feel the music.
Bass in your face
You can actually feel low-frequency sound reverberating through your head, though we’re only talking a slight sensation, and nothing overwhelmingly uncomfortable. However, the AfterShockz Titanium headphones do have an issue with volume. If you wear them around your home or office, they perform brilliantly, allowing you to hear and feel music, and also hear conversations happening around you. They also link to the phone via Bluetooth, so they are completely wireless, giving you the freedom to walk about 10 m from the phone. However, in busy and loud environments, it’s sometimes difficult to hear the music.
However, where the AfterShockz Titanium headphones really fall down is through the slightly loose fitting on the neckband. The neckband appears to protrude rather too much and moves during exercise. That’s despite a tiny 36g weight. We were also disappointed by its short six-hour battery life. So while we love the innovations inside the AfterShockz Titanium headphones, and we will definitely keep an ear on bone conduction in the future, we’re not convinced that this is the finished article.
Price as reviewed: UK £99 / US $129.95