In 2014, several companies started to develop wireless headphones with built-in memory and the ability to measure heart rate, intended for sports and fitness. The first company with headphones, which measure the pulse, once was the Motorola, but the popularity of this product is not earned, but gave impetus to the development of the whole direction, so Motorola have happened often. But other companies do not have blown up the market. The reason, in my opinion, is the lack of synchronization of training with some of the services that focus on their programs. Perhaps the best wireless headphones for jogging until recently Jabra Sport Pulse, they have protection from sweat and water (can not swim), a button to control calls and music, but it requires a connection to the device, its memory is not. In the Jabra, realizing the need for synchronization of the data pulse, added to the opportunity for a range of popular programs, such as, Strava, Runkeeper, Endomondo, Runtastic, MapMyFitness, but some others not listed. Also, the headset is not able to measure the distance traveled, the other time it measures the cadence and also sends it to your phone. Therefore, many heart rate monitor will not work with this headset, it is not said, and it’s annoying.
The next stage in the development of headsets for fitness and sports can safely assume that an approach in which the headset turns into a small computer, which not only measures the heart rate, but may consider distance, it has its own memory and plays the music you have downloaded it. With this approach created several devices, the most interesting of the financed – a wireless earplugs The Dash is powered by Bragi. They have become a pioneer in this direction and promised to the market and the users very much – 4 GB of internal memory, built-in accelerometer to measure the distance traveled, surround sound and full protection against water. In a very short time on Kickstarter campaign received more than $ 3 million, these headphones have become one of the key development area for many companies.
Touch control, pairing two headphones to each other, nice design and the lack of competition on the horizon. For the 2014 product look revolutionary. But, as often happens, to bring the concept to realization has taken too long, and many times turned out not so unambiguous. For example, the sports component was not very accurate pulse sensor frequently crashes, and save your phone without training it is impossible that negates the very idea of the product, because these headphones are designed to not take a jog phone. And then it turns out that you can hear the voice prompts, but if you do not have your phone, the training will not be saved. For those who run it like a knife to the heart, and, accordingly, The Dash was not the best option. Although it has been promising.
The Samsung Gear IconX headphones created, focusing on The Dash, similarities in the solutions obvious, though pragmatism IconX forced to abandon unrealistic at this stage of technology solutions. The Samsung created the headphones are not just as a separate device, and as a complement to the S Health program, focusing on the variety of devices available to people, from watches to bracelets and individual sensors. To some extent, these headphones – of an additional device that may be necessary for those who engaged in fitness and sat on the company’s ecosystem. However, the headphones can be used with any phone running Android 4.4 and with a memory capacity of 1.5 GB, it requirements to install S Health program.
The bundled headphones are in an oval box, it corresponds to the color of headphones, you can select one of the three primary colors – black, blue or white.
I have a box of milk-white, headphones exactly the same. Headphones are in offices, box closed on the button. Inside the box there is a battery at 315 mAh, it can be used to charge the headphones about 3 times. Each earpiece your battery capacity of 47 mAh. Charging time – about an hour, there are two LEDs on the front surface, while charging they are red when the headphones are charged, the color changes to green.
Included are three sizes of silicone inserts that headphones are not dropped while running, – S, M, L.
In my ear, they are fixed perfectly, even when cycling cross country there is no problem, no headset went out. The weight of each earphone – 6.3 grams, this baby. With mounts everything in perfect order, in the ears of the headphones are not perceived, forget about them quickly. Soundproofing is good, the outside world is almost inaudible. Therefore, the headphones have the option, in which one of the microphones adds the sound of surrounding events, you begin to hear what is happening around you. In this mode, the power consumption increases.
No protection against water, they can not swim, but with sweat and rain electronics are protected by impregnation P2i. However, watering headphones still do not need, it can damage them. How will they react to the pot, and how long to hold on, no one knows me, it is always the weak point of wireless headphones sports, they often fail because of the sweat, it just eats away electronics.
In order to work with headphones, you’ll need a Gear Manager app on Android-smartphone and Gear IconX Manager on the computer (there is a version for the Mac, as well as for Windows). The second program allows you to upload music on your headphones, enough to put them in the case and connected to a computer via USB-cable. Interestingly, they are also seen as removable drives. The program has no settings to control headphones, everything is available only on the smartphone.
Downloading music is implemented is very simple, select the files and send to the headphones, the built-in memory of 4 GB is enough for about 1,000 songs in MP3 format (initially 3.5 GB available). No formats uncompressed audio is not supported, but they are not needed. Unfortunately, all the music list is displayed, and it’s not very convenient, is all very primitive.
Interestingly, in each earpiece is 4 GB memory module during playback, no data transmission from one earphone on the other, which saves energy. The properties of the headphones can be seen on the computer (where they appear as the left and right headphones).
For Galaxy smartphones with a software upgrade will be available for downloading music directly to the device, and not only from the computer. Supported formats – MP3, M4A, AAC, WAV, WMA (WMA v9).
The Gear Manager on your smartphone you will need to choose one control headset (left or right), then it can and will change. The beauty lies in the fact that they are technically equivalent, but you can choose one that is convenient to you, and during workouts do not take two headphones, but use only one. two headphone control is implemented the same way, this touch pad, touch to which you implement play music, answer a call, or the beginning of the workout.
Here are the basic instructions for headphones: press once – play or pause, double tap – to answer the call or to terminate it, flipping forward, triple click – go to the previous track, scroll through – the increase or decrease in volume, activated by holding training.
The headphones are built voice guidance in 15 languages, they work in the same language as your phone. Tips written by living people, very pleasant, no synthesized voices. During the run, you can specify the distance in the software the distance at which you will speak results – the very distance, time, and heart rate. Sorry, but the headphones do not have voice control, you can not talk to them. This is a problem when listening to music, because you just can not go to the album that you are interested in. And then so many music becomes useless, flipping it on headphones difficult. And it is not visible from your phone! In short, this moment did not thought, however, as all of its competitors.
The Gear Manager, you can also choose how you will work with music, whether it will be played with the phone or with headphones. IconX beauty that does not need to take the phone, and that’s good. Look at what’s inside the headphone Gear Manager.
A few words about the quality of the sound. I miss the bass as wireless headphones IconX sound is not the best way, the sound is rather flat. But loud. On the other hand, given that the headphones are designed for jogging, when the head knocks, is the music quality is quite acceptable. At the sound of the competing products are also inferior to conventional wireless headphones, which in this case are much smaller. Miracles do not happen, expensive electronics such gags and miniaturization do their dirty work.
As a wireless headset, you can use both plugs and only one. Each earpiece two microphones have noise reduction system. The interlocutor hears you well, does not notice that you’re talking on a headset.
Now for the workouts. You activate the headset long confinement, the manual recommends to wait up to ten seconds to pulse measurement was correct. If you use your phone, not just the headphones, you will show the route (used on the phone sensor). Just the headphones is the distance, but did not rise, as well as heart rate. I used headphones during a small walk and climb the steep slope, compared with readings FitBit Blaze, the results were very similar in all cases.
Here the results are stored in the S Health, where you can carefully examine them. It is also possible to copy the data into different programs, and some have exported almost all sports applications, so that your data can exist outside of S Health System, which is interesting. In general, watching the developing S Health, I can say that the program grows from year to year. But there is a children’s disease, for example, by activating a headphone training, it can be stopped immediately, and it will remain – an exercise in a few seconds long! Or per minute. The obvious mistake, but as long as it exists.
During training, you can set the distance at which a summary will be counted, but you can specify a time interval ranging from every five minutes, and so on. In general, it turned out nice, you are always aware of distance and heart rate.
In the settings you can specify which notifications you will be counted and which are not. For example, when you call zachtut caller’s name if it is in the notebook, or his number. Same with the other notifications, they are limited to only basic default.
Working time – this is the most controversial option, then it depends on the outside temperature, the playback volume, mode, broadcast ambient sounds. I’ll try to give an approximate variation – in the mode of exercise you get about 1-1.5 hours, playing music for about two hours. This baby will not be able to lend a greater need charging. But again, there is little more exercise this time, in order to run a marathon, the headphones will not fit. This earphone for training, not for everyday life, they just tailor made for one function in everyday life are applicable as well as tracksuit at the evening reception.
Price Gear IconX is 12 990 rubles (in Europe – 200 euro), which looks expensive wireless headphones, but comparing them with the price of The Dash, you realize that it’s inexpensive, they cost 300 euros, while the fitness functions work much worse that negates their full protection against water. Do not take Gear IconX as headphones every day, they have been created for those who exercise and want to get rid of while jogging on the phone or music player. As such, they are distinct, offer a more or less accurate heart rate measurement. Here we must mention that heart rate measurement is not as accurate as in kardiopoyasah, they offer the best data, and if you are a professional, then you just need them, rather than watches or headphones. Until recently, this class of devices for fitness simply did not exist, they just appear. Obviously it is clear that they do not become mass, but it will find its buyer.
In the segment of sports and wireless headphones, you can draw attention to the already mentioned Jabra Sport Pulse, the price they have exactly the same in Russia – 12 990 rubles. But I have to carry around a phone for a jog. Those Dash in Russia is already available informally, the price – from 20 000 rubles, that is, in my opinion, expensive. For everyday and rare sports, you can choose normal headphones, of which a great number, including by Samsung with the reading of the notifications and other pleasant trifles, I can advise Level U.