I always have had periods in the last 15 years, when running was becoming more and more difficult. For instance after a period of fast running, returning to base and low heart rate training. When work and family life are so busy, that in the morning you cannot even open your eyes without a pair of pliers. When having little niggles and micro-injuries. When there is a question mark in your future, little financial hiccups, relation and friendship issues. There is always something what want to stop you from running. However, when there is entertainment and motivation, that is easier to pick up the shoes. That is what I am looking for sometimes. A little help. I never looked for excuses, nor for options to not to have it hard. I however time to time, need to take my mind off from the task and just go with the flow.
I tried multiple earphones for music, audiobooks and podcasts, white noise and binaural beats. I never really found something what is good for all and can workout in all situations. My best earphones were the Yurbuds JBL combo long time ago. I never really found anything that can stay long and pain free in my ears neaither beforehand, nor after.
First of all I chose this model over the others as this is the only one having a USB C charger in the AS line up. I like simple. I don’t look for cables all the time, and want to have no issues if I lost, broke or forgot the cable. Phone, battery, earphone, USB C ! Easy ! Secondly, I decided to have this brand as everyone swears about it. However we talk mostly about ultra runners and nature bathers. The type of athlete who needs to be aware of the environment and need balance. Balance I mean as a bodily function and part of coordination.
I run a lot in the mountains and I I don’t want to have a mountain bike flying into my face, nor want to surprise a wild boar, or be surprised by a shepherd dog. I also need my ears open if I did downclimbing, scrambling, downhill running. Equilibrium is coming from the ears ! Important !
I have been testing the OM for almost a month now. No chafing, problems or any physical issues going on. I can tell that it works extremely well at all intensities and all angles in the nature. Well, the design is kind of okay only for summer though, as when running in cold with multiple layers, the back-neck of your clothes, the hood and the top of a tall back-pack will push on the back of the headphones every time you turn your head and will annoy you.
There however, can be a lot of negatives for most of you. First is sound quality. That is total BS ! I mean, try putting on a 10€ headphone from aliexpress and it will outperform it on every single musicy way. Bass is non-existent and volume is super low. I mean that out in nature alone, it is fine. Try running in the streets of Paris and you’ll hear absolutely nothing ! The treble is very present, not too annoying, but it kind of replacing the bass and the drums feel like somebody’s clapping on saucepans with a wooden spoon. If for you music quality is an absolute must, you will jump on any Aftershokz model with a pair of after-ski boots ! I mean that it is bad ! As a fun test, I tried all kind of musics. Offspring, Slayer, H-Blockx, Rhapsody. That caused a big headache. Oakenfold, Carl Cox, Dave Seaman ? Listening to them with no bass ? Xzibit, DMX ? BAAAAADDDD ! Piano and guitar acoustic musics are kind of OK; but who wants to listen to Chopin on the trails right ? Reggae roots can go all right too and maybe some light pop what you listened previously on LP. I would compare the music quality of the best stock autoradio’s audio quality from the 80s. In a LADA for example.
I however listen to audiobooks and podcasts. For me that is excellent entertainment and putting my mind off the task. I do a lot of hiking with a heavy pack and also do a lot of base training for ultra trail running recently. I absolutely adore the Aftershokz. The BT connection is stable, you need a phone with you though 😀 It causes no hotspots, nor in cold, neither in the heat. I am looking forward to use them every single time ! Like always I’d prefer more battery life, but honestly I train 2-3 hours daily with maybe a couple of 5-6h outings the weekend. I just charge it daily just like my phone. I have USB C hanging out from my computer and all my sockets. Yeah My Adidas RPT01 with it’s 40 hours of battery life needs to be charged on the first day of each month. But the purpose of the two are different !
That narrows down the user range a lot and makes it very specific. However there are lot of trail runners and outdoor athletes who are looking for security over anything else as a first line of feature ! Then all day comfort ! The Aftershokz phones cuts very clearly both ! I am 100% satisfied and happy with the phones and have absolutely not regretted getting one !