In terms of popularity, the AfterShokz Aeropex is one of the most well-known bone conduction headphones available today. While it isn’t the best choice for those who are concerned with sound quality, it is a wonderful choice for those who want to be aware of their surroundings at all times while listening to music.
As long as you understand that the Aeropex is not intended to shut out background noise, you’ll be satisfied with it.AfterShokz (now known as Shokz) has a firm grasp on the bone conduction headphones industry, and the company offers a number of items oriented specifically at sports in its lineup.
Because of its software-powered transparency mode and mono listening capabilities, the AfterShokz Aeropex provides a convenient way to hear what is going on around you. Our favourite thing about bone conduction headphones is that they don’t clog up your ears, which is great for people who have specific sensitivities. However, they’re generally far from flawless.
The AfterShokz Aeropex has been in our possession for two weeks, and we can confidently state that it is an excellent headset for a certain niche audience. Let’s see whether it’s a good fit for your requirements.
In terms of ease of use, the Aeropex is a rather straightforward wireless headset with only three controls and a two-pin charging connection. Unlike other wireless headphones, the Aeropex transmits music through your skull bones by vibrations rather than through speakers that direct sound directly into your ear canals.
This distinguishes it from other wireless headphones on the market. Although it appears to be frightening, the technology has been available for decades.
It’s easy to be tempted to stuff the spherical bits into your ears when you first see them, but resist the temptation. The earbud-shaped components of the headphones must be placed just in front of your ear canal so that they rest on your cheekbones in order to be effectively used (see here).
Two buds are connected by a band that can be stretched to fit a number of different head sizes. When the band comes into contact with my ears, it forms an arch, and the whole thing feels comfortable whether I’m at my computer or out on a stroll.
When I remove a mask while wearing the Aeropex, I accidently shift the headset around or turn it off completely. Not to mention the fact that wearing both a mask and spectacles while wearing the Aeropex would make anyone seem like a tangled web of wires.
If you place a high value on safety and avoid certain types of workouts, the AfterShokz Aeropex is a good set of workout headphones to consider. The headset will be appreciated by runners, bikers, and even rock climbers, but it is not the best choice for someone who does bench presses.
Because the Aeropex wraps around the back of your head with a few centimetres of space between your skull and the band, any position in which your head leans back against something will push the headset forward and away from your cheekbone, resulting in crooked headphones when you stand up again.
The Aeropex is particularly effective for rock climbing since it keeps out of the way and interferes with movement only infrequently. On occasion, I accidentally knock it out of place on overhangs, but it’s a simple matter to reposition it. It is also a good choice for runners because the band only flops slightly and does not jiggle the headset out of place when running.
For outdoor sports, bone conduction headphones such as the Aeropex are a wonderful option.
When I’m cycling, I like the Aeropex since it allows me to hear everything around me, including passing automobiles and other bikers.
Sure, you can achieve the same result with a portable speaker, but the Shokz headset provides greater safety and a more private listening experience. Even still, getting the band to perform harmoniously while wearing a helmet is difficult, and it never feels totally comfortable in the process.
Despite the Aeropex’s peculiar fit, I enjoy how it keeps me in touch with my surroundings, whether it’s friends cheering me on as I climb or a barking dog at the end of the block. When compared to the amount of situational awareness required, adjusting the fit is a little bother.
With the AfterShokz Aeropex, you only receive the basic SBC Bluetooth codec, which means that you won’t be able to transmit high-quality audio to any device.
Even if the Aeropex supported AAC or aptX, you wouldn’t be able to hear the higher-quality music because the headset does nothing to shield your ears from the outside environment. No matter how many codecs it supports, a bone conduction headset can never sound as nice as a pair of earbuds that seal to your ears or a pair of headphones that are correctly suited to you.
Due to the fact that the AfterShokz Aeropex is equipped with Bluetooth 5.0, it has no possibility of supporting LE Audio or the LC3 codec when the time comes.
While this is a bit frustrating, there are some advantages, such as more consistent communication and increased battery economy when compared to Bluetooth 4.2 goods, to consider. Interestingly, the Aeropex supports Bluetooth multipoint, allowing you to connect to two devices at the same time, making it a good choice for business use.
The Aeropex is powered by a lithium-polymer battery with a capacity of 145mAh, which is good for an official battery life of 8 hours, and my experience confirms this. The headset has a standby period of ten days and requires two hours to recharge completely.
Unfortunately, you’ll have to utilise a special charging cable that magnetically latches into a two-pin socket on the right side of the Aeropex in order to charge the device. If you misplace your cable, you’ll have to purchase a replacement from Shokz.
When you charge the headset, an LED will illuminate to indicate the battery status: red indicates that it is charging, and solid blue indicates that it is completely charged. If the battery indicator flashes red every two seconds, the battery is running low.
The AfterShokz Aeropex does not filter out background noise since it leaves your ears fully unoccluded, allowing you to hear everything clearly. This lack of isolation is a feature, not a flaw, in the system. If you’re looking for noise-canceling headphones, there are many of alternatives available for athletes and everyday customers alike.
When using the AfterShokz Aeropex, there is no sub-bass, which should come as no surprise given that it does not touch your outer ear, much alone form any type of seal with your ear canal. In order to compensate for this, the bass response is noticeably stronger than the midrange response.
Using this type of sound makes sense since bass notes in music are typically the first to be affected by auditory masking, and because most athletes prefer a powerful bass output during exercises.
Lows, midpoints, and peaks
As a result of the difficulty in reproducing an ideal match with the Aeropex, the sound quality is uneven. It sounds pretty fantastic when I position the headset squarely on my cheekbone, just in front of my ear, and the song 17 anymore by marcos g is playing.
His voice are perfectly audible, however the claps that precede the bass drop at 0:25 are significantly softer than I’m used to. That goes for the ensuing bass drop a split second later, which continues for the majority of the song’s length.
When I move the headset up or forward by a centimetre, the volume and quality of the audio drop dramatically. In addition, if I listen to music on my phone while eating, the sound is erratic due to my jaw slightly misplacing the Aeropex with each mouthful of food.
Despite this, the sound quality of this headset is excellent, and it sounds far better than the now-retired Trekz Titanium from AfterShokz. Because of the lack of sub-bass response, the Aeropex performs best when reproducing spoken word content, such as podcasts or audiobooks, rather than music.
However, while the AfterShokz Aeropex is not a particularly good phone headset, it does include a serviceable microphone.
As long as you only make phone calls in a peaceful area, the person on the other end will be able to hear you just fine on the other end of the line.
In contrast, if you decide to go for a stroll on a windy day, the person on the other end of the phone line may become agitated by the amount of background noise that is generated. Listen to the audio below and let us know what you think!
The AfterShokz Aeropex understands how to fill a niche, and if you’re someone who like to exercise outside or who wears hearing aids and wants to listen to music at the same time, this might be the ideal solution for you.
When I’m riding my Aeropex about town, I’m secure in my abilities, and I enjoy hearing the sounds of the city in tandem with my music. While not particularly impressive, the sound quality is respectable for something that does not directly contact with your hearing.
Despite this, the Aeropex has certain disadvantages, such as the unique charging method and its low value when compared to rival headsets. If sound quality, comfort, fit stability, or features are important to you, there are considerably better alternatives available to you than you may think for the average listener.