Getting ready for your morning jog?
You have your water bottle and your very best headphones for running and you are ready to go.
Motivated and excited to start your day with a bang, you head off at a slow pace. You start picking up speed and suddenly the earphones pop out.
Frustrated at the disruption of your rhythm, you push them back in.
You continue with your run but it happens again. This is the moment you realise that your earphones aren’t actually that great after all.
This has happened to me before too and it certainly ruined my morning run. As soon as I got home, I made it my mission to finding the best set available on the market in 2015.
Deciding on which product to buy can be a difficult decision because you have so much choice available nowadays. Even when you have all of your requirements laid out, it can still be a hard and you might feel that there is no right answer. To be honest, you are on the right path and it comes down to personal preference.
Firstly, you need to decide what your budget is. If you want a product associated with great sound quality, excellent comfort and a modern appearance then be prepared to pay a high price. However, if you want a more budget-friendly pair then you will be able to find those too. But before you start looking at different products, you also need to decide the type of earphones you prefer. The best product can come in different styles including in-ear (also known as ear buds), ear hook and neckband.
I know how difficult and time consuming it can be to carry out all this research so I have done it all here. I have drawn up a comparison table while also listing my 3 most favourite products. I understand that some people might find it difficult to spend a premium price on earphones so I have also listed the top 3 affordable products you can buy in 2015. These products will suit you regardless of whether you are a veteran, an athlete or just stepping into your running shoes the first time.
The 3 Best Running Headphones
According to Bose, these Bose SIE2i Sport earphones are specifically engineered for exercise. Along with the famous sound quality delivered by Bose, this product is sweat-proof and weather-resistant so you have no excuses to skip your training session if it is raining. No matter how intense your exercise is, you can count on these earphones to remain in place. This means that you no longer need to worry about abandoning those energizing morning runs. Another major plus point is that there is a built-in microphone which can be operated with a single touch to receive any phone calls while you are out. This one touch easy functionality also works with music. A bonus feature is that the packaging includes an exclusive Reebok fitness armband to hold you mp3 device. The whole thing sounds perfect with the earphones having a sporty appearance while also being available in different colours.
Overall, this set is probably my favorite when doing most activities but it can be quite pricey. Spending such a vast sum of money on earphones doesn’t really make sense. However, if you are looking for a top of the range product then the Bose SIE2i Sport earphones are your best bet.
When Usain Bolt trains, I bet he uses these sport headphones to train. Just looking at them gives me that feeling. They look absolutely fantastic.
Based on a sport clip which fits and stays in your ear, the Monster iSport Victorys are the perfect match. They are not only sweat proof but you can even wash them. Furthermore, the total noise isolation means that you are able to carry on with your morning run without being disturbed by your noisy outdoor surroundings. Incorporating a convenient hands-free control, you will also be able to take your call without needing to stop. Overall, these are perfect for running as they provide an awesome fit with amazing sound quality.
Again with most similar sets, these are quite expensive and unless you are very much into buying the high end stuff, it does not make sense to spend so much on a product which can stop working spontaneously. They are only available in black and lime green colour which may not suit some people.
Sony MDR-W08L– Best Vertical In-The-Ear
This Sony product is one of the top headphones for running while also being a great alternative for those who are not very fond of ear buds. With a great design and the extremely light weight, this product will stay in even if you have small ears. Furthermore, it is also associated with great comfort which will allow you to keep pushing. You will not encounter any problems with sweat so the Sony MDR-W08L Vertical might suit you best.
Despite the above positive points, this product is quite pricey and I personally don’t think it’s worth buying at this price. Another common problem with these earphones is that they are not very long lasting. This means that it is highly likely that one or both sides will stop working especially if you are a heavy user during exercise.
Affordable Jogging Headphones
Panasonic RPHJE120D ear buds have been created with a great ergo-fit design which provides excellent comfort and perfect fitting. Priced at a measly $10, these earphones are definitely the best affordable set when compared to models in the same price range. The sound quality is powerful with excellent bass and sound isolation. This is what surprised me the most. This product will even last you a long time depending on your usage. Basically, if you need simple ear buds without any hook or clip then these are the best by a mile.
At a bargain price of $10, it would be wrong of me to pick out specific cons. They’re decent and will do the job. Obviously, don’t expect them to rival the more premium sets as an audiophile would probably laugh at these.
This is another incredibly cheap set which is available in a wide range of colours. The price is a major plus point and it also comes with 3 different ear cover sizes. This means that this product can be adjusted to fit most ear sizes. The JVC HAFX5B will fit into your ears securely during your workout and remain comfortable throughout. You cannot go wrong with these at this price. The rich bass and great sound quality further boosts the rating of this product so I would highly recommend it.
As mentioned before, you should not compare these jogging earphones with more premium and expensive products. These will be sufficient to get by and should last you a few months but at $10, don’t be surprised if they stop working suddenly.
The Skullcancy S4CHFZ-033 Chops Buds are reasonably affordable earphones for running by a big brand. The design is great with an ear hanger which can be adjusted for a secure fit. Despite the price, these do not look cheap and the build quality is decent. These earphones also come with a short cord and an extension. The short cord will not get in your way during exercise so will allow a fully efficient jog.
Where the Skullcandy S4CHFZ-033 Chops Buds disappoint is the sound quality. While they provide reasonable sound clarity, there is a clear lack of bass. So if you like to blast out music while jogging, be prepared for disappointment. All in all, this product is comfortable, light weight and the price definitely makes it one of the best accessories for jogging.
My Thoughts and Recommendations
With so many choices available, choosing the right product can be a very difficult task. Whatever product you decide to get, let me just say that there is no right and wrong answer. I have compared and reviewed the best products within both the higher end budget and more affordable budget.
I would like to believe that I’m a hardcore runner so I know how it feels to choose between these products. I quite like my music and usually would prefer to have the product with the highest quality. Usually, I would say that you should spend a little bit more and get a premium quality product for the best sound clarity with bass and durability. However in this case, it is indeed a tough decision due to the price difference between the premium products and the more affordable ones.
I usually have a pair of premium earphones specifically to listen to my music, so for an exercising activity, I would much prefer to keep a cheaper pair. At the end of the day, it all depends on your budget and requirements. The cheaper products will still last you a couple of months and the risk of losing or breaking this type of accessory means it will be a safer bet to stick to a more affordable set.
A lot of athletes look to get aesthetic products which go with their sporty personality. If this is something you would prefer, I would recommend the Bose SIE2i Sport or Monster iSport Victory. However, if you’re not too fussy regarding the quality, then I would stick with the Panasonic RPHJE120D set. This set will most certainly do the job and looks sporty in appearance too. The one main problem I mentioned was that from my experience these cheaper products can stop working suddenly. However, I would still much rather go for a $10 product and replace it after a few months of use rather than spending $100 on a top of the range pair. This is especially true if you’re not very good at taking care of these accessories. You should also keep in mind that you could randomly lose your expensive earphones.