If years of cranking up your tunes to sky-high decibels are taking their toll, the electronics wizards at AfterShokz have created a better way to rock out by bypassing your eardrums completely. The Syracuse, NY-based company, which debuted a trio of headphones at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas this week, uses bone-conduction technology to deliver sound waves directly to your inner ear. Because AfterShockz doesn’t drown out ambient noise like conventional earphones can, you’ll be able to carry on a conversation, pay attention to passing cars, or maintain awareness of your surroundings while your music plays, all while keeping the peace between you and your fellow man (or woman).
Most of what we hear is due to sound waves traveling through the air to the eardrum, AfterShockz explains on its website. But the bones in the head can also transmit the vibrations directly to the inner ear, avoiding the eardrum entirely. “This is how a person hears his or her own voice, and also how whales hear,” the company says.
The bones in the head can also transmit the vibrations directly to the inner ear, avoiding the eardrum entirely.
Originally developed for military special ops and SWAT teams, the headset wraps around the back of your skull before looping in front of your earlobes.
Three models are currently available: the Sport ($59.95), designed for outdoor activities like running, hiking, and cycling; the Mobile, which includes an in-line mic for a cellphone; and the Game ($69.95), which bundles a USB connector and a 9-foot cord for gaming, Skype, or other Voice Over IP technologies. All versions are lightweight and sweat- and water-resistant. You also get a rechargeable battery (good for 15 hours of playtime on a single charge), a water-repellent storage tote, and a lifetime warranty.
And because nobody can hear the music but you, you’ll be able to keep your taste in bands, not to mention audio levels, to yourself. Just try not to sing along.
[Via Discovery News]