While cycling the streets of London there is plenty to keep you distracted: honking motorists, distracted pedestrians, traffic lights and slovenly cyclists. On a long bike ride, it could be nice to be able to listen to some music or the radio.
Ah, if only there was some safe way to allow the avid cyclist to listen to tunes while cycling.
Thanks to a partnership between Sennheiser and Adidas, cyclists and other enthusiastic sportsmen now have uniquely designed headphones. With several models, the biggest names in headphones and athletic gear have come together to provide several models of athlete-friendly headphones.
We’ll talk about how these headphones can be appropriate for cycling later on tin the article.
The good news about the Sennheiser/Adidas athletic headphones is that the specs are identical for the most part. The major difference is the shape of each, which allows each person to decide what model provides the best fit. Those who run, for example, may choose a different style of headphone than those of you who spend most of your time on a bicycle.
So here are the specs you really want to know about, so let’s get to it;
- 2 year warranty
- 120dB sound max
- 3.5mm plug – angled
- Remote controlled
- 18-20,000Hz frequency
- i-device optimised for Apple users
- Water resistant
Now we know what makes them similar, let’s get into specifics about their differences.
The PX 685i model of cycling headphones is just what a sportsman requires; they are lightweight, ergonomically designed, water-resistant and optimised for Apple devices. You don’t have to worry about the headphones slipping off or becoming uncomfortable after a long workout because they have soft cushioning around the head and earphones plus an anti-slip grip.
If you’re looking for traditionally made headphones complete with the headband then this model is preferred.
The PMX model has a super-light headband that can comfortably rest on the neck when not in use, thanks to the unique design that wraps around the crown rather than the top of the head. You cyclists who opt to use helmets will find the PMX mode handy because it fits well under half-helmets.
The OCX model of sport headphones is ideal for anyone into intense physical activity. With the adjustable wraparound ear bands you don’t have to worry about losing one ear bud as is customary with most headphones. The snug fit of the OCX 685i is a sportsman’s dream in design alone, but they are also extremely lightweight and cushioned so you get the most comfortable fit during your workout.
What about safety?
I know that many of you are thinking who would listen to headphones while barreling down a congested city street during rush hour. That’s a fair point and in fact is exactly why we’re talking specifically about the Sennheiser/Adidas athletic headphones. The unique design of the PX and PMX 685i with the ear buds resting over the ear canals allows cyclists to listen casually to music without drowning out background noises for a safer ride.
Of course headphones during cycling work best for long rides in the countryside, rather than the city as they are likely to distract from signs and signals that alert you to your surroundings. It’s probably not the best idea to use any headphones during heavy traffic or an intense race, but when you take a long leisurely ride away from city congestion these headphones are ideal.
An alternative option, if you enjoy music during your rides, then this little neat speaker that costs less than £10 delivers incredible sound. You’d need to fit it in a bag on your handlebars or panniers but at least you’ll be able to clearly hear your surroundings. The downside is, not everyone around you really wants to listen to your music so it’s only really appropriate if you are cycling somewhere with hardly anyone else nearby.
While price is always a factor when buying new products it is important to also recognize the cost of a product as well. The PX 685i and the PMX 685i, which are ideal for cyclists, range from £30 to £40, which is really a small price to pay for a bit of music while on a long ride. The non-cyclist friendly headphones range from £27 to £60, but they are perfect for other physical activities.
When purchasing items such as this it is important to remember that nothing is 100% waterproof, but these headphones are designed to protect against sweat and rain. In fact it is recommended that users wash headphones under running water after each use and allow to air dry before storing.
There are some concerns with the actual durability of these headphones, but with a 2 year warranty backed by the Sennheiser name, it’s safe to say you’ll get more than your money’s worth.
The biggest problem is that these headphones are optimised for Apple products which means Android users will not be able to control their devices using the remote or voice control. With Apple products being so ubiquitous this makes a kind of sense, but is limiting for non-Apple users.
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As seen on The Guardian, BBC and The Independent.