Mon | Oct 23, 2017

Tech Times | Panasonic bone conduction headset

Published:Monday | June 26, 2017 | 12:29 AMDanielle Mullings
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What comes in the Box?

- Carrying case
- 2 adjustable bands
- 1 rechargeable battery
- 1 charger for rechargeable battery

What is Bone Conduction?

This is a method of audio transmission in which the sound vibrations are sent through the upper cheekbones of the face. Because of this, it is not placed in the traditional area over or in the ears. Instead, the earbuds are positioned in front of the ears.

Audio Quality

The sound is filled with clarity but lacks bass and volume. I had to max the volume to hear it well as I felt more vibration than sound and as such, the sound was not clear in noisy environments. The audio was similar to just placing an earphone in front of your ears. Though it is not designed to be used in this way, I did notice that if the headset is positioned in the ear, the sound is much better.

The headset is able to provide sound for up to five hours per charge with the rechargeable battery and charger that comes in the pack. It also supports hands-free talking on incoming calls. In addition, it has echo-cancellation features which limit the sound of echoes from your voice and the caller’s. This is useful when both of your hands are occupied.

Finally, the headset uses Bluetooth and is able to function up to 10 metres away from the source, which is roughly half the length of a cricket pitch or the length of two compact cars.

2/10

Ease of Use

The headset has an LED light that flashes different colours to indicate the state it is in. Bluetooth pairing is very simple, all you have to do is hold down the Bluetooth button and it will show up in your phone’s Bluetooth devices.

The headset also has buttons on the side hanging over the right ear that allow you to move to the next/previous track and pause the audio. On the left ear, buttons allow you to increase/decrease volume and answer/end calls.

I would have preferred if all the buttons were in one place as I kept forgetting which side had which buttons.

6/10


Build and Design

The bone conduction design is beneficial because your ears are left uncovered, thereby allowing you to still be able to hear your surroundings and music simultaneously. Athletes and runners would benefit most from this as they can listen to music whilst jogging on the road and still hear nearby cars. In addition, the headset will not be affected by sweat as it is water-resistant.

However, the design does affect the audibility of the sound as it is not as voluminous as traditional headphones. Another drawback is that the headset becomes a bit uncomfortable at high volumes as the sound vibrates against your upper cheekbone, which is an unusual feeling.

I also found it difficult to adjust the fit of the headset to my head, so it hung a bit loosely, possibly due to majority of the weight being at the back end. Since the headset goes over the back the head, if the user has a lot of hair it may also prove challenging to use.

4/10
 

Overall, I found the headset uncomfortable and could not use it for a prolonged period of time. However, I do appreciate the innovative bone conduction design that supports simultaneously listening to music and your surroundings.

Price $5,000

The products mentioned in this article were provided courtesy of Royale Computers and Accessories. Telephone: 906-1067, 906-1068, and 754-5048.