Feel Free to Leave These Headphones in While You Drive

It's called bone conduction, and it puts voices in your head

By The Editors
April 24, 2017 9:00 am

Biking, driving, watching the kids: we’ve all worn headphones at times we probably shouldn’t have.

Blame Sarah Koenig.

Luckily, one L.A. tech company has figured out how to turn up the volume without tuning out the world.

Currently up for funding on Kickstarter, Conduit Sport makes bone-conducting headphones that allow you to hear what’s being transmitted (music, a conversation, NPR) without plugging up your ears.

The bone-conduction speaker (BCS) is a piece of metal that moves up and down on your temple while vibrating at a high frequency. “BCS essentially turns your bones into musical instruments,” explains Nicholas Sabharwal, one of the co-founders and CTO. “Only you hear the music.”

conduit headphones (4 images)

When a BCS headphone vibrates in open air, it does nothing. “The movements are too small for it to produce sound in air. However, when you place the BCS on your head, your cheek bone resonates with the vibrations and in turn resonates the inner ear, letting you experience sound.”

That means you can also hear the traffic behind you while biking, your kids squabbling over something that’s not theirs, or even juicy bits of that conversation you’re attempting to eavesdrop on.

Like lots of wireless wraparound headsets, Conduit uses bluetooth technology to connect to your phone, so you can manage calls while they’re in use. It’s also lightweight, sweat-proof and claims to last up to six hours on a single charge.

You’ll still need to look both ways before crossing the road, unfortunately.

Maybe they’ll address that on version 2.0.

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