People’s knowledge of earphones and headphones are very limited to the common types; In-ear and ear bud earphones, and over/on ear headphones, but there is another type of headphones which exist in the market and I cannot make out why this is not popular. Introducing you to Merlin’s Audiova Conduction Headphones.
How do these work?
They are worn normally around the back of your head but unlike normal headphones, the conduction speakers are ahead of one’s ear.
Why is it like this?
The simple answer to this is, the Audiova headphones conduct sound to your inner ear through your cheekbones, leaving your ears free for ambient sound awareness from around you. Ever feel like your earphones block your ears from breathing or from outside noise? With these, there is nothing blocking your ear canal.
Where would this work?
Everywhere! If you ever need heaphones, these would come in handy.
Unlike traditional earphones or headphones, nothing is blocking your ears, which means you can hear your music/audio clearly but you also hear everything around you and this makes it perfect for when you’re outdoors (a major safety plus point) and when you’re doing sports.
I have personally taken these headphones to the Gym, which highlights another important feature on the Merlin Audiova Condution Headphones, due to the fact that they do not follow the typical speaker technology, they are water/sweat proof – even good for underwater use! Imagine listening to music while you swim!
So, what is in the box?
The box is pretty straight forward and includes an instruction guide, the headphones and a micro-usb charging cable.
The device is good for up to 6 hours of use (I personally managed 4.5 hours) with a standby time of up to 10 days. Charging is not very slow and I managed a full charge from dead in 3 hours. Audio is transmitted via Bluetooth 3.0 but it did not do very well with a distance more than 17-20 feet (scenarios would vary) but I was never further away than my mobile/computer than that.
The device is 145x145mm and weighs only 43g which makes it quite comfortable to carry and wear.
How is the sound quality?
Being that these are headphones, sound is quite an important aspect and happily the Merlin Audiova Condution Headphones does a decent job. It is not superb for heavy music users as the bass and music quality is not in your hear, but for the casual user, this is very good.
How is it to love with?
This is a bit of a tricky one. From one end, this makes things a lot more convenient as you can hear your surroundings, never get the feeling you’re blocked by your earphones or uncomfortable when sweating but on the other end, due to the way these work, people around you will actually hear your music/audio as it is not in your ear as well.
Think of it this way, this is like an external speaker directing all its audio power to your cheekbones and ears. Some people may not want others to hear their music and others may find it as a distraction or as an inconvenience, so this depends on application. Outdoors sports? yes! Indoors in a library? No.
What features does it have?
I am glad I asked that question.
On the side of the device (where the battery and controls are) sits a few buttons; Power and volume rocker. The USB power is also located there with a rubber flap for water protection. These pretty much handle the whole operation of the device. The power button acts as the on/off button and also bluetooth pairing. The volume rocker manages the volume and audio selection (forward, backwards, etc). The LED indicator has a few colors and frequencies representing the various modes and options.
Closer to the tip, the cheekbone conductor, sits the call end/pause button along with the microphone.
Pairing and using the device is pretty straight forward and simple. It did not lose connections at any point during my review of it.
I would say there is a slight concern with the quality of device for the long-run. There are soft touch rubbers, and glossy plastics and I am not sure how it would fair up with a lot of use. The rubber covering the USB port was not a super tight fit on my review unit.
Another thing I was concerned about was its fit. It worked pretty well for me but was a bit loose for one of my friends. Being that the design is a fixed size, some people might find the device too big or too small, although it is fairly flexible. perhaps an adjustment strap of some sort would have come in handy.
How much is it worth?
The Merlin Audiova Condution Headphones goes for around 70-90$ depending on where it is purchased and for outdoor/sporting use, this is pretty decent. I know of other outdoor oriented headphones/earphones around this price range but as mentioned earlier, the class of headphones this is, makes it much more convenient to use.