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Whether you swim for leisure or for sport, your pool time experience can be enhanced by the addition of music, courtesy of waterproof headphones. Gone are the days of blasting your boom box from the dry safety of your lounge chair. Technology has made it possible to take your music with you under the water. But just because you can take a pair of headphones swimming doesn’t mean you should: not all waterproof headphones are going to be of high quality.
What are the best waterproof headphones for swimming? Here are our picks of some of the top waterproof headphones for swimming:
|Many shape options for the best fit
|FINIS Underwater Duo Bone Conduction MP3 Player
|Bone conduction technology leads to better sound quality
|Surge Custom Earphones
|Customized fit for maximum comfort
|Works well in both water and on land
|Plantronics Backbeat Fit
|H20 Audio 100%Waterproof Headphones
|AfterShokz Aeropex Open-Ear MP3 Bone Conduction Headphones
|Sound quality through swimming moves
|HydroActive Neckband Waterproof Earbuds
|Can function in depths of up to ten feet
|Walkman NW-WS623 Bluetooth Waterproof Headphones
|Can use in saltwater
|Underwater Audio Waterproof Headphones
|Great sound quality
|FX-Sport VRX Premium Wireless Sport Headphones
|Over the ear style headphones works in up to 200 ft of water
|Aquapac 100% Waterproof Headphones
|Price lower than most
|Tayogo 8GB Waterproof MP3 Player Bone Conduction Bluetooth Swimming Headphones
|Bone Conduction Technology
In this article, we will take a closer look at these underwater swimming headphones so that you can decide which pair is the best value for your money.
What is Needed for Quality Waterproof Headphones?
There are some undeniable features that help make or break a set of headphones. Some of the things people look for when choosing a set of headphones are:
- Comfort and fit– Nothing is more annoying than when you are in the middle of your workout, and one of your earbuds falls out. How your earbuds fit in your ears is a key feature to a quality set of headphones, and is dependent on the size and shape of the earbuds. Some of the headphones featured in this article go around the head instead
- The quality of sound– It can be difficult to find quality sound headphones as it is, and being underwater poses an even greater challenge to sound quality.
- How they look– Perhaps aesthetics aren’t quite as important as the other factors on this list, but if you are going to be seen in public, you don’t want an awkward-looking device clinging to your head.
- How long they last– Have you ever found the perfect set of headphones, just to have to replace them a month later? Blown out speakers, frayed wires, and fuzzy sound can ruin your listening experience.
- Price– How much are you willing to pay for your headphones? Are you looking for top of the line quality, or can you settle for less for a better price tag? Underwater headphones come at a variety of price points we will take a look at in this article
- Whether they are Bluetooth compatible or not– The last thing you want to do when you are swimming is get tangled up in a bunch of wires. On top of that, Bluetooth capability in your swimming headphones will allow you to access more music, as you won’t be limited to a couple of gigs that might come with the mp3 player version of swimming headphones.
- Battery life– No one wants to stop their swim session to go charge their headphones, so battery life is another important thing to look at.
- Depth in which they function– Just because headphones are waterproof doesn’t mean they will function well at the bottom of the ocean. Make sure you check how deep you can take your swimming headphones, as some only function in a few feet of water, whereas some can go much deeper.
We will look at these features while we explore a variety of headphones so you can find the pair that best fits your underwater needs.
#1 Swimbud Headphones
We’ve all worn the cheap earbuds that feel more like we’re shoving rocks in our ears than a music listening device. And if you’re serious about your swimming, you want to be able to focus without the distraction of an uncomfortable set of headphones.
Swimbud headphones are a strong contender for comfort as they come with four different types and a variety of sizes of earbuds. Since all people and ears are different, it makes sense that these headphones don’t come with a one-size-fits-all approach. The earbud styles the Swimbud headphones offer are:
- Tree tips– provide a watertight plug as an earplug would
- Fin tips– hug the curves of your ear to form a seal to keep water out
- Ergo tips– allow the wearer to hear outside sound so swimmers can maintain some awareness of their surroundings
- Round/mushroom tips– the “typical” earbud shape that most people are used to
This wide range of options comes with a price, and currently, on Amazon, that price is $70. This may be a bit more than a lot of people would like to pay for headphones, but is definitely cheaper than some of the fancier options.
#2 FINIS Duo Underwater Bone Conduction MP3 Player
Another more unconventional option to explore is the FINIS Duo Underwater Bone Conduction MP3 Player. That’s right– this option for underwater music listening is not a set of headphones, but an MP3 player that transmits sound in an unconventional way. As the name implies, the FINIS Duo Underwater Bone Conduction MP3 Player is placed over the wearer’s temples and conducts the sound through the bones– no earbuds needed.
The lack of earbuds or anything that you stick into your ear makes the need to form a seal to keep water out obsolete. There also won’t be any chance of this device falling out of your ear.
Instead, you will be swimming around with a small device pinned against your temple, which for some people may be a more comfortable option. You just have to be comfortable with the fact that you might get some strange looks from onlookers unfamiliar with this technology.
The FINIS Duo Underwater Bone Conduction MP3 Player will also take you back to the pre-Spotify/Pandora days of actually having to upload songs to an MP3 player. This device can hold about 1000 songs or 60 hours worth of playback.
#3 Surge Custom Earphones
Now, let’s say comfort and fit are not just important to you, but really, really important. Maybe you want headphones that feel like they were made especially for your ear. If this sounds like you, then Surge Custom Earphones should be your pick.
As the name implies, Surge Custom Earphones are customized to your ear. For these headphones, you take the following steps:
- Order your kit from the company
- You actually have to go to the audiologist and get mold taken of your ear.
- Send the mold back to the company
- Wait patiently (or impatiently) for your new headphones
You know you’re invested in quality earphones if you are making a doctor’s appointment in your quest to get the perfect fit.
Of course, you will pay for this perfection. You are going to pay:
- $129.99 for just the custom fitting molds. These molds do not include the actual earphones.
- $159.99 if you want the molds to include the earbuds
- At least $50 for your trip to the audiologist to make the mods
If you are willing to invest the money, you can have headphones made just for your unique ears.
#4 I360 SwiMp3
If you look at the specifications of many of the headphones that are meant for use underwater, you will read that they aren’t meant for use on land, as the sound quality does not hold up on land. Therefore, it may seem that if you purchase a pair of headphones to use underwater, you will also have to purchase a separate pair to use while on land.
This, of course, is just more money coming out of your pocket. If you don’t love the idea of having to purchase two pairs of headphones to fit all of your sporting needs, then consider the i360 SwiMP3 player. This headphones/player combination is meant to work both while you are swimming and while you are dry.
This MP3/headphones combination has 4 GB worth of storage, which, as you likely know, isn’t a ton of room to hold your favorite tunes. It will hold about 1,000 songs (which at one time may have been a lot, but doesn’t seem to impress much anymore).
Buyers of this pair of headphones did have a few complaints:
- These headphones don’t always stay on very well, perhaps making them better suited for land than underwater where the water can pull them out
- They are not for sale on Amazon– your Prime benefits will have to sit on the sidelines for this purchase
- They seem to be only for sale in pounds, not American dollars
Check out this website to purchase these headphones.
#5 Plantronics Backbeat Fit
Let’s face it– technology has spoiled us. Wired headphones are all but obsolete technology now. Bluetooth is the standard when it comes to headphones. But is this wireless technology available for those who wish to take their headphones for a swim?
Fortunately for those who will accept nothing but the latest technology, some swimming headphones do have Bluetooth capabilities. Take, for example, the Plantronics Backbeat Fit that comes Bluetooth-ready.
Some other benefits include:
- You can suck a full hour’s worth of play out of a 15-minute charge
- A clip that goes around the wearer’s ear, making them stay in place
- The price is pretty reasonable at $79.99
Be warned, though– the Plantronics Backbeat Fit headphones are not for heavy-duty swimming– they can only be submerged up to three feet. These ones may be better for a light splashing around at the pool with your friends than a swimming workout.
#6 H20 Audio 100% Waterproof Headphones
Choosing the price to spend on a topic can be a bit of a double-edged sword. Everybody loves a good deal; however, if you fail to invest enough to get a quality product, all of the money you spend is wasted money.
One relatively low-priced waterproof headphones option that received all-around decent reviews is the H20 Audio 100% Waterproof Headphones. These headphones are currently featured on Amazon for $39.99. Some reviewers noted that the earbuds did slip out of their ears occasionally, so it’s up to you to decide if you want to trade some functionality for a reduced price.
Some reviewers raved that these headphones lasted longer than they expected, while others complained about their H20 Audio headphones breaking. Overall it comes down to how often you are going to use them and how well you take care of them, as well as what money you are willing to spend.
#7 AfterShokz Aeropex Open-Ear MP3 Bone Conduction Headphones
Here is another unconventional headphones option that uses bone conduction technology. One reason that bone conduction technology is good for use while swimming is because nothing is in your ears, meaning you can still hear what is going on around you. This is a good safety feature as you don’t want to be completely cut off from the world while practicing a sport in a public place.
Buyers of these earphones on Amazon raved about the ability to flip and turn in the water without the sound coming from this device losing quality.
AfterShokz makes a similar pair of headphones that are not made for underwater use, but that have Bluetooth capabilities. Therefore, if you are impressed by the quality and function of these headphones, you can buy a pair for your time out of the water as well.
These headphones are currently selling on Amazon for $149.95, making them one of the pricier options on our list, but sometimes you get what you pay for, and for this option, that may just be the case.
One complaint that should be noted about this option is that the MP3 player has only 4 GB worth of space, meaning you probably can’t fit your entire music collection on this device at once.
#8 HydroActive Neckband Waterproof Earbuds
Some of us aren’t particularly talented when it comes to swimming, and may simply splash around the surface of the pool while chatting it up with friends. However, if you are someone that likes to dive deep beneath the surface, one feature you will need to pay attention to when it comes to choosing a pair of waterproof headphones for swimming is the depth that the headphones can function well in.
Some headphones can only function in a few feet of water, making them just fine for the casual swimmer. If that is not for you, consider the HydroActive Neckband Waterproof Earbuds. These earbuds function in up to ten feet of water, making them suitable for most standard pool depths.
As the name suggests, these headphones feature a neckband that wraps around the back of the head. It lands below the ears, and therefore stays far away from your swim cap and/or goggles. Some people may find this style more comfortable than ones that wrap higher up on the head.
These headphones are currently featured on Amazon for a price of $90 (originally $110), making them a middle-of-the-road option cost-wise.
#9 Walkman NW-WS623 Bluetooth Waterproof Headphones
While we have talked about using waterproof headphones to enjoy your music (or podcasts, or audiobooks) while swimming, what about those of us who would like to use them in the ocean? Imagine enjoying a sunny day wading through the shallow waves with your friends and family, accompanied by your favorite music. Will your waterproof headphones hold up?
If you were the proud owner of the Walkman NW-WS623 Bluetooth Waterproof Headphones, you would be in luck! These fancy headphones function in both fresh and saltwater, meaning you can enjoy your music at the pool, in the shower, in the hot tub, at the lake, and even while at the beach.
Keep in mind that they are only meant to be under salt water for 30 minutes, so they aren’t meant for heavy-duty ocean swimmers or deep-sea divers.
Some other things to note about these headphones:
- A three-minute charge will get you an hour’s worth of use- perfect for the irresponsible procrastinating headphone owner.
- They have a full battery life of twelve hours, making it one of the longer battery lives on this list.
- They function in both hot and cold weather– from 23 degrees Fahrenheit to 113 degrees Fahrenheit.
- They have Bluetooth technology.
While these headphones may sound too good to be true, you will pay the price for the technology. These headphones are currently being sold on Amazon for $146.52, making these some of the more costly headphones on our list. However, given all of the features listed above, the price may be worth it for this piece of technology.
#10 Underwater Audio Waterproof Headphones
These underwater headphones work with the IPod Shuffle. Unlike other headphones on this list, these headphones do not have a built-in MP3 player.
This pair of headphones has an excellent battery life– 15 hours to be exact. This means, depending on your swimming habits, you could go several swimming sessions without having to charge these headphones again.
These headphones were rated as the number one pick for underwater waterproof headphones for swimming by Bass Head Speakers. The biggest reason Bass Head Speakers were a fan of these headphones was that they have superior sound quality.
Brace yourself for the price of these headphones: they are currently being sold on Amazon for the large price tag of $280. But before you let this price upset you, realize that the iPod Shuffle is included in this price.
Of course, the iPod Shuffle that comes with these headphones is also waterproof, which is likely why the price is so high. It also comes with a small bottle of fit goo, which is goo that’s meant to help create that waterproof seal in your ear that’s so important when using waterproof earphones.
On Amazon, this product has a multitude of raving reviews. Reviewers comment that these headphones:
- Are durable
- Have great sound quality
- Work like they are supposed to in the water.
Perhaps the high price of these headphones is justified by the benefits they provide to the buyer.
#11 FX-Sport VRX Premium Wireless Sport Headphones
So far, we’ve looked at earphones with earbuds that are placed in the ears as well as bond-conductor types that go over the temples. But what about the classic, over the ear style headphones?
For those who prefer their headphones to fit over their ears, whether for comfort purposes or sound quality purposes, there are the FX-Sport VRX Premium Wireless Sport Headphones. These headphones come with a multitude of desirable features that make them stand out from other swimming headphone options. These headphones are loaded with features such as:
- Pre-recorded workouts that will even play over your music
- 8 GB of space
- Work in and out of the water
- Will perform at great depths (up to 200 feet)
One thing that makes these headphones so unique is that they come pre-loaded with hours upon hours of workouts. If you would prefer to use your own workout, you have the capability of recording your own as well. This way, you can stay focused and stay on track while burning calories.
Don’t worry, though. If you don’t want to listen to workout instructions (or if you are using these headphones for leisure), you can listen to music as well. These headphones come with 8 GB worth of space. In fact, if you would like the best of both worlds, you can actually have the workout prompts play over your music.
The one drawback to these headphones is that they aren’t waterproof out of the box. You need to make a separate purchase of a silicone skin to give them waterproof capabilities. While this is an extra expense, you can be confident that you will not be sacrificing sound quality due to built-in waterproof capabilities.
These headphones will cost you about $159, which actually doesn’t sound like such a steep price given all of the features. This price point is in line with some of the other headphones on our list that don’t have quite so many possibilities.
One way in which these headphones way outperform many other headphones is their depth capabilities. These headphones will perform up to 200 feet underwater. That should cover all of the swimming pools you might find.
The downside to purchasing these headphones is that they aren’t sold by Amazon. If you are lucky, you might be able to buy them off of Amazon from a third party seller. You can find them directly on the FX Sport website here.
#12 Aquapac 100% Waterproof Headphones
Let’s take a look at another set of headphones: the Aquapac 100% Waterproof Headphones. These headphones feature an ear clip that curves around your ear to ensure they stay in. They also can withstand 30 feet of water.
The Aquapac manufacturers state that the pressure of depths greater than 10 feet is not suitable for underwater headphones, as the pressure can create hearing damage. This calls into question some of the headphones that work in depths greater than 10 feet, as this technology may not be necessary.
Probably the best part of these headphones is the price, which is only $40.11. These headphones are way cheaper than other options that are currently on the market.
If you purchase these headphones on Amazon, they come with free Amazon support.
#13 Tayogo 8GB Waterproof MP3 Player Bone Conduction Bluetooth Swimming Headphones
We will end our list with one last set of headphones that features both bone conduction technology and Bluetooth capability. However, don’t necessarily expect Bluetooth technology to work underwater, as the water can mess up the signal. Bluetooth technology can be enjoyed once you get out of the water to dry off.
The Tayogo 8GB Waterproof MP3 Player Bone Conduction Bluetooth Swimming Headphones are heat resistant up to 60 degrees celsius, meaning you can take these headphones into the hot tub with you.
They are comfortably made out of silicone, so you don’t have to worry about hard pieces of plastic digging into your head.
What’s Best for You?
So there you have it– 13 of the top picks for the best waterproof headphones for swimming. What is the top pick depends on your needs, such as budget and how vigorous of a swimmer you are. Enjoy listening to your music in the water!