Running is a go-to sport for many when they’ve had a bad day, need some inspiration, or simply need some alone time. The best companion for runners during a sweaty run is often their music. Are you one of them?
If so, you know that blocking yourself from the world has its flip-side too. Singapore’s traffic is organized, but it can be deadly, be it on the roads, parks, or park connectors. These areas are often swarmed with other runners, errant cyclists, prams, and falling tree branches.
That’s why in recent years, bone conduction headphones have gained popularity in the sports fashion industry. One of the brands in this market is Sony, who recently released the Sony Float Run headphones priced at S$199. In this review, we’ll take a look at these headphones from the perspective of a runner. You can find her on Strava with the username “Rambutan Yiyi.” Here’s her review:
When it comes to headphones for running, there are a few key factors that many runners consider. These factors include comfort and fit, durability and sweat resistance, sound quality, wireless connectivity, battery life and ease of use. Let me break down my take on each of these factors and more.
Comfort and Fit:
Weighing only 33g, the Sony Float Run is comfortable to wear for extended periods, even for someone like me who wears plastic glasses and has a helix ear stud. I tried it on for about 6 hours while doing housework and going for a run. Throughout these activities, it stayed snug and securely in place, thanks to its unique over-the-ear design, relieving pressure on the ears. The flexible neckband also allows it to rest comfortably around my head and should be able to accommodate varying head circumferences easily. There’s no need for adjustable ear hooks or interchangeable ear tips.
Durability and Sweat Resistance
The Sony Float Run headphones have an IPX4 rating, making them essentially sweat- and splash-resistant. For runners, this is important. When was the last time you washed your headphones, especially your AirPods? While the IPX4 rating does not mean they are waterproof, it’s good enough for you to rinse them after each sweaty run, even under Singapore’s hot and humid climate.
The sound quality of the Sony Float Run headphones is surprisingly good, with clear audio, balanced tones, and, most importantly, decent bass. When I first turned them on, I had a moment of wonder, thinking, “Is this surround sound?” I also appreciate the friendly audio reminder when the headphones are turned on, informing me of the battery charge and Bluetooth connectivity. However, it’s worth noting that if you enjoy loud music while running or if you’re near a highway, the volume range will reach its limit. You can still converse with your friends even with the music on, just at a slightly lower volume.
Sony has been a wireless headphones manufacturer for a long time, so the wireless connectivity between the headphones and my phone has been a breeze. Pairing the two devices is straightforward and simple. It’s a small convenience that has a huge impact on our overall running experience. Just ask any runners about it.
The battery life on the Sony Float Run headphones is great. They offer up to 10 hours of playtime when fully charged, and a quick 10-minute charge gives you an hour of juice. These numbers hold up well in real-world usage. So, all in all, it’s good.
If you’re concerned about using a proprietary charging cable, don’t be. The headphones have a USB-C charging port, so you can use any Type-C cable available to charge them anytime.
Controls and Ease of Use
While the Sony Float Run headphones are essentially a plug-and-play device, they also come with essential features like intuitive controls for adjusting volume, skipping tracks, taking calls, and more. The right earpiece is marked with a red icon for easy orientation when putting them on.
This is my first time trying out bone conduction headphones, and I’m truly impressed. I’m amazed by the sound quality, battery life, ease of connectivity, and user-friendly experience. These headphones fulfill the essential needs of sports enthusiasts. If you’re an avid outdoor runner and run in a relatively quiet place, the Sony Float Run headphones are worth considering. They help you stay aware of your surroundings, ensuring safety every time you head out for a quick sweat.