Earbuds with neckband for running
May 3, 2020 11:41 AM   Subscribe

I'm looking for some earbuds or earphones for running - however, I must have weird ear canals because I have never found a pair that stay in my ears for more than a few seconds (I've tried a lot of different ones including ones that claim to guarantee to fit). What has worked for me in the past is a pair of earbuds with a rigid neckband to hold them place.

I used to own a pair of Sennheiser PMX 80 but they eventually fell apart, and they seem to be discontinued. Is there something similar on the market now? Looking for a budget of $100 CAD or less.

I'm not looking for:
- ordinary earbuds
- around the ear hook style since I have tried these and find them awkward
- over the ear headphones since these cut out too much ambient noise
- earbuds with a neckband but that don't hold the earbuds rigidly in place like these
- Bluetooth would be nice but not necessary.

posted by piyushnz to Shopping (14 answers total) 7 users marked this as a favorite
I've had similar issues and love the Anker NB10. I'm not sure what you mean by "around the ear hook style". These do go around the ear but then connect to a band, rather than just hanging from the hook. Only about $25 US, and Bluetooth.
posted by Mr.Know-it-some at 12:18 PM on May 3, 2020

Most earbuds fall out of my ears too. Plantronics Backbeat Fit and Aftershockz have both worked well for me.
posted by stopgap at 12:27 PM on May 3, 2020 [1 favorite]

I know this isn't exactly what you are asking for, but the Skullcandy Jib+ Active caught my eye at the store the other day and aren't expensive ($25), so I got them and they stayed in during an entire day of yardwork. The little extra piece fits in the curve above your ear canal and really does help keep them in.
posted by hankscorpio83 at 12:29 PM on May 3, 2020

While you’re searching for the ideal pair, you might try buying a cheap pack of BudLoks to help your current pair of ear buds stay in your ears better. I have the same problem with most earbuds (slipping out of my ear canals) and have found that BudLoks work in a pinch.
posted by skye.dancer at 1:05 PM on May 3, 2020

There are sleep earphones that are inside a headband thing
posted by Jacqueline at 1:09 PM on May 3, 2020

the aftershokz aeropex are my exercise earphones of choice.

they're bone conduction so they don't go in your ears at all, which means you can hear what's going on around you. you wear them like a backwards pair of glasses so they don't slip at all.

during quarantine i've been wearing mine for like 16 hours a day and regularly forget they're on my head until the very end of the night. i'm even comfortably wearing a regular pair of over-ear headphones over them right now at my computer (although that doesn't work with every earphone).
posted by noloveforned at 1:40 PM on May 3, 2020 [3 favorites]

The Anker NB10s look pretty close to what I'm after. I'm not sure how the head band at the back works though, seems a bit awkward with the extra rubber band.

The aftershokz aeropex sound intriguing, but are outside my budget. Is the cheaper titanium model worth it?
posted by piyushnz at 6:21 PM on May 3, 2020 [1 favorite]

I've got the Aftershokz Titaniums, wear them when running, and like them. I've recently discovered that the microphone on them is rather weak and low quality, but the speaker sound quality is fine.
posted by BinaryApe at 10:37 PM on May 3, 2020 [2 favorites]

I have the titaniums around my neck right now because I've been using them for FaceTime off and on all day. The sound quality is good, though not perfect, and they tickle at top volume, but they are ridiculously comfortable and have decent battery life to boot. They're legal for cycling in when, here, anything that covers both ears is not.

They're round my neck right now because the one problem I have with them is they're hard to lay down in - the band pushes them into odd positions.
posted by How much is that froggie in the window at 10:40 PM on May 3, 2020

I have the same problem with earbud-expelling ear canals and I love my Aftershokz Titaniums. They were a gift but I believe they were right around $100 CAD at the Running Room. The Bluetooth turned out to be a vital function, because one of the problems I had was the cords moving around and pulling out the earbuds.

I mainly listen to podcasts while running, though, so the poorer sound quality doesn't bother me as much. I also feel more safe being able to hear footsteps from behind, traffic sounds, etc. more clearly. These days I have to jump out into the road more often to give pedestrians their 2m and more awareness of my surroundings is important.
posted by pierogi24 at 5:41 AM on May 4, 2020

Anker NB10s ...I'm not sure how the head band at the back works though, seems a bit awkward with the extra rubber band.

That effectively shortens or lengthens the head band. You adjust it until the band is very slightly snug against the back of your head. The first time takes a minute or two to figure it out, then it's very easy to adjust.
posted by Mr.Know-it-some at 7:54 AM on May 4, 2020

Another vote for the aftershokz titanium. Great for outdoor exercise because I have more situational awareness with them, but can still hear my podcast or music or whatnot. I prefer the smaller size.
posted by latkes at 10:48 AM on May 4, 2020

I have the Soundpeats Force which is a neckband Bluetooth wireless. The sound quality is similar to Monoprice blue/green xbass. Anyway, here is a highly rated one from Sony that definitely does not break the bank. Soundpeats and Anker are decent brands that are enough of a low price point that it does not hurt to experiment.
posted by jadepearl at 7:58 PM on May 4, 2020

Sorry jadepearl, the neckband in those don't hold the earbuds in place so these probably wouldn't work for me. I've discovered that Costco Canada has both the aftershocks titanium and airs so I will give one of those a go (I think they give me 90 days to return if I don't like them). Thanks everyone!
posted by piyushnz at 4:41 PM on May 5, 2020

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