Best Bone-Conduction Headphones of 2024

Best Bone-Conduction Headphones of 2024

$180 on Amazon

Best Bone Conduction Headphones

Showcase Open Run Pro

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$80 on Amazon

Photo of Shox OpenMove Bone Conduction Headphones

Best value cord conduction headphones

Showcase Open Move Bone Conduction Headphones

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$200 at Best Buy

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Best Bone Conduction Headphones for Working from Home

Showcase OpenCom 2 UC

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$130 on Amazon


Top mid-range cord conduction headphones

Showcase Open Run

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$130 on Amazon


Best bone conduction headphones for people with small heads

Showcase Open Run Mini

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$150 on Amazon

shokz-openswim-underwater.png shokz-openswim-underwater.png

Best Bone Conduction Headphones for Swimmers

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What are the best corded headphones overall?

Bone-conduction headphones continue to grow in popularity — especially for runners and bikers — as Shoez, a leading manufacturer of bone-conduction headphones, has improved their design, performance, and performance. And the sound quality has improved steadily over the years. The company's current top-of-the-line OpenRun Pro is the best bone-powered headphone out there, though it may be a bit too expensive for some.

While bone-conduction headphones lack in the bass department (unless you plug your ears with the included foam earplugs), they're appealing for a few reasons. First, because they transmit sound to your ear through your cheekbones, your ears don't have ear tips. And thanks to their open design, you can hear what's going on around you — especially traffic noise — while listening to music or talking on the phone. Also, some race coordinators don't allow runners to wear anything in their ears, which is where headphones like this come in handy.

You can see that this list contains only Shokz products. This is because they are currently the best option. We've tested other bone-conduction headphones — you can find plenty of cheap generic models on Amazon — but we've always felt that the Shokz are more entry-level than any of them. Better than buying OpenMove headphones.

Here's a look at the top models. I will update this list as a new cord conduction headphone is released.

The Best Bone Conduction Headphones for 2024

OpenRun Pro is Shux's current top-of-the-line bone conduction headphones. With ninth-generation bone-conduction headphones, they offer slightly better bass performance than the company's first flagship model, the Aeropax (now known as Shox Open Run). This makes the OpenRun Pro the best bone-powered headphones you can get right now, although they still can't match the sound quality of traditional headphones.

The OpenRun Pro has a lightweight, wraparound titanium frame and is rated for up to 10 hours of music playback, and you can get 1.5 hours of battery life from a 5-minute charge (they have USB-C instead of (There is a proprietary charging cable, which is unfortunate). I found them comfortable to wear, but you may occasionally have to adjust them on your head to relieve potential pressure points. While they sound a bit fuller with more bass — it's an incremental improvement, not a huge leap — like other bone-drive headphones they're strongest in the midrange where vocals linger. So are podcasts, talk radio, newscasts and audiobooks. A hard carrying case is included as well as foam ear tips that you can stick in your ears to get better bass performance (most people use these tips sparingly).

Unlike the high-end models from Shookz, the OpenMove doesn't have such a sleek design. Nor does it feature its own state-of-the-art bone-conduction technology (it's equipped with its seventh-generation technology for its premium Pitch 2.0 sound). But these headphones perform better and better than other budget-priced bone-drive headphones out there. In other words, while they're a step down from both the OpenRun and OpenRun Pro, they're still decent bone-powered headphones that fit securely and comfortably (they do weigh a bit more). Note that during flash sales these prices are occasionally reduced to $55.

A few years ago, Shookz changed its OpenRun (formerly Aeropex) corded headphones to a more communications-friendly headset with an integrated boom microphone called the OpenComm ($160), which is still available today. The second-generation OpenComm 2 UC costs more than the original, but has an upgraded Bluetooth 5.1 chipset that slightly improves performance and now allows for firmware upgrades that are required for Zoom certification. Additionally, the microphone has moved from the left ear to the right and a convenient mute button has been added to the boom microphone — a significant addition.

Because they leave your ears open — sound travels through your cheekbones — they're not for those who want to block out outside noise. Rather, the idea is that you can hear everything around you without covering or jamming your ears. The headset is quite comfortable to wear. Some people find that freeing and lacks the best noise for calls, as callers told me they heard very little background noise even when I was out on the noisy streets of New York. A noise is heard.

While the Shooks are great sounding bone-drive headphones, they aren't great for music because they lack in the bass department. However, they are great for speech, so they work very well as a headset for making calls and listening to podcasts or audiobooks. They also feature multi-point Bluetooth pairing, so you can pair them with your phone and PC and easily switch to your phone if a call comes in while you're on your computer. And they come with either a USB-A or USB-C wireless dongle (you choose) that you plug into your computer for quick and reliable wireless connectivity.

As long as you don't mind a boom microphone, you can also use the OpenCom 2 for sporting activities and are a favorite for runners who want to keep their ears open to hear the outside world for safety reasons. are They are also water resistant. The only downside is that they require a proprietary charging cable instead of USB-C. Battery life is rated at 16 hours of talk time and 8 hours of listening.

To be released in 2021, the Shokz OpenRun is based on the company's previous top-of-the-line bone delivery model, the Aeropax. The Open Run has the same design as the Aeropax, but the headphones have been upgraded with a quick charge feature and Bluetooth 5.1. It has eighth-generation bone conduction technology instead of the ninth-generation technology found in the stepped-up OpenRun Pro (which has slightly better sound quality than the OpenRunPro). The Pro also has slightly better battery life at 10 hours compared to 8 hours for that model. That said, the OpenRun is fully waterproof and dustproof with an IP67 rating while the Pro has an IP55 rating, which means it's dustproof and can deal with constant water spray.

Overall, the Pro has a slightly better design and performance, but it's not a huge difference (perhaps 10% to 15% better) and the OpenRun costs $50 less.

The OpenRun Mini is the only OpenRun headphone with a smaller neck. The OpenRun Mini has a .83-inch smaller band size than the OpenRun, and Shokz says that if the back of your head measures 9.25 inches or less from left to right ear, the Mini is your better choice.

The Shokz OpenSwim is a rebranded version of the AfterShokz Xtrainerz (yes, OpenSwim is a much better name). This model is equipped with Shokz seventh-generation bone conduction technology, so it won't sound as good as the OpenRun Pro, which uses ninth-generation technology, but you probably won't be a critical listener while swimming (more while people are only looking for passable sound while swimming underwater). Note that they do not feature Bluetooth for wireless listening (Bluetooth does not transmit underwater). They have 4GB of onboard storage for playback of MP3 files that you have to load onto the headphones like an old-school MP3 player.

OpenSwim offers up to hours of battery life and is obviously fully waterproof with an IP68 rating.

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