Testing with the 2016 GadgetGuy Sound Test, it is easily one of the more unusual reviewing experiences we’ve ever felt. Ever. Ever ever ever.
It’s as if the audio is coming from inside your head, because it sort of is.
With no sound being sent down your ear canal, that isn basically what is going on, and it opens up your ears to hearing the outside world, resulting in one of the more curious sensations, as if the media player lived inside your brain, and not just that random song you keep on singing to yourself.
As for how it sounds, the Aftershockz bonephones produced a sound quality that we mostly anticipated: decent highs, a little bit of muddling in the mids, and a bottom end that was hard to hear unless it was a solid thwack of bass.
Punchy bass is very clear, and it’s so clear that you can feel it tickling the side of your head as it pounds.
Interestingly, we found the audio was quite clear at the bottom end of volume, and here it gives everything a nice background music effect to life, as if you’re walking around with your own soundtrack that no one can hear while you still appear social.
Testing it with the 2016 GadgetGuy Sound Test, we found the highs took priority here, something we could hear as the subtle electronic tones from Imogen Heaps “Headlock” sonf Demi Lovato’s “Cool for the Summer” kicked in, all evident though lacking the ominous sound each tends to offer.
Without that bottom end, the tracks can sound a little empty and shallow, but it’s still quite easy to listen to, with much the same result in R&B from The Weeknd and Mark Ronson.
Punchier pop manages to break through the withdrawn undertones that can’t be handled by the bone conduction earphones, and we found with Sara Bareilles’ “Brave” the sound was bright and punchy, while any rock with an emphasis more on rounded mid-tones and highs sounded not too shabby, even if the drums were hollow in comparison as more of that bass failed to get into our skulls.
Classical and jazz finish up the test, and it’s here you find a sense of clarity as Claude Bolling and Yo-Yo Ma’s “Baroque in Rhythm” lacks the need for excess bottom end, and as such sounds quite good while Dave Brubeck’s “Take Five” pulls out a lovely tonality for the properly acoustic instruments with no excess instruments.
In fact, jazz was one of the surprise areas, because here we found the music was basically beaming to our head with only a skerrick of sound leakage, and that was only if you got within a head’s distance from our own.
Bass is still otherwise missing, though, and if you’re expecting to hear the undertones and low sound in your music, it just won’t happen.