The Stockholm earphones from Urbanista are, as is so often the case with Urbanista products, rather beautiful.They come in four different colours: Black, White, Rose Gold and our favourite, Olive Green, with a charging case in the same colour as well as a micro-USB charging cable and instructions manual, all packed into an attractive box that would make a great gift.
There is nothing quite like music to motivate you on your workouts, people who manage to push themselves during a session with nothing but the sound of their own wheezing breath and pounding heartbeat in the ears are some sort of weirdos. The issue is that you may have some really good over-ear headphones already, but wires and bulky headgear are just not your friend in the gym, seriously try doing 10 burpees without them doing your head in.
For me, one of the least motivating things in the gym is the sound of some attention-seeking meathead grunting through every rep like they are trying to give Nadal a run for his money; the best antidote to this annoyance is to plug into your favourite tunes and drown out the world around you. The Optoma NU Force BE Sport 4 have been specifically designed for use within the gym, the Bluetooth headphones remove any annoying dangling wires shackling you to your phone and come with a sweat- and water-resistant IPX5 rating.
I had a nightmare scenario last week: I got one mile into my eight-mile run, only to have the batteries of my wireless headphones die. I then had to suffer an hour (who am I kidding? It was more like 80mins) of nothing but my heavy breathing, traffic, rowdy college students and squeaky right trainer to listen to. You see, I have always found that music increases my performance, blocks out any annoying brain chatter and generally just makes my runs more enjoyable.
The CR8-P1 Sport Wireless Earbuds have been specifically developed to enable you to listen to music whilst you work out without getting tangled up in wires. These earbuds come in an attractive hard case that doubles as a charger, with a 2200 mAh battery that gives you a total of a whopping 72 hours playtime. The charging case can also be used to top up the battery life of your smart devices, whilst its compact 65 x 30 mm size means you can easily fit it into your pocket, backpack or gym gear.
The Evoke H6 Prestige Edition from Pure is a DAB/DAB+ and FM radio with Bluetooth and colour display. Available in either Black or White, it has an attractive appearance with a glossy seven-layer lacquered finish with modern lines, suitable for a variety of living spaces. The Bluetooth connectivity allows you to stream music directly from your device, be it your favourite album or the audio for the film you are watching.
The Vento P55 are SoundMAGIC’s first headphones where every component is manufactured in house. I don’t know why this is important, but you never know what questions might pop up in the pub quiz, so, while we are at it: the name Vento comes from the Italian word for “wind”; we can only hope it refers to the weather rather than butt acoustics.
The Iota Alpha speakers from Neat are a dark horse among the more ‘high-end’ stereos on the market. With their strange looks, almost like a cross between a tumble-drier and a half-finished robot from a 50’s TV show, it’s easy to think that their sonic output will be similarly whacky. However, these little knee-high speakers have got a few surprises inside that shatter these mocking first impressions.
Chances are you have heard of the Jabra brand. If not, then why not? These guys created the world’s first ultra noise-cancelling microphone, the world’s first Bluetooth headset and the world’s first sports headphones with integrated heart rate monitor. I think its safe to say these guys aren’t comfortable coming second to anyone else.