The best cycling headphones aren’t necessarily made to join us on our bicycle rides, but they have a combination of features and traits that make them suitable for the rigors of two-wheeled adventure. They’ll usually combine sound clarity, waterproofing (and consequently sweat-proofing), comfort, control accessibility, and durability. However, the ideal pair of cycling headphones will likely vary from person to person.
During Zwift races and indoor sessions, some people will want to listen to music at maximum volume, while others will prefer a quiet audiobook or podcast during a leisurely ride along the bike path. Many people will use headphones to block out their surroundings, but cyclists in traffic will certainly desire nothing less. Many people believe that the finest bicycle headphones for outdoor riding are none at all. We wouldn’t recommend being unable to hear your surroundings while riding on the road, but that doesn’t mean you can’t listen to your favorite music indoors or off-road, and there are a few alternatives that allow external noise to be heard with the sounds coming from the headphones.
If you’re looking for the best cycling headphones for indoor riding, sweat proofing will probably be your top priority, whereas for outdoor riding, you might prefer something that uses bone conduction technology rather than plugging your ear canals, or you might simply value sound clarity and ease of volume control more.
Table of Contents
Bose SoundSport Free True Wireless Earbuds (Sweatproof Bluetooth Headphones for Workouts and Sports)
- TRULY wireless Sport headphones for total freedom of movement, packed full of technology that makes music sound clear and powerful
- Earbuds are sweat and weather resistant (with an Ipx4 rating) and come with 3 different pairs of Stay hear and Sport tips (in sizes S/M/L) that...
- Up to 5 hours of play time with each charge and an additional 10 hours with the included charging case and also features a charging time of 2 hours
These are a stunning pair of Bose premium earbuds. These are Bluetooth earphones that are wireless. Isn’t it lovely not to have to deal with wires? However, these kind of earbuds are always prone to becoming misplaced. Don’t be concerned. Bose has invented the ideal solution. A tacker is incorporated inside the Bose SoundSport Free earbuds. You can quickly and easily locate any missing earbud after connecting to the Bose app. When you’re on a long journey, it’s a terrific concept that will provide you a lot of peace of mind.
They come in three sizes, are comfy, and don’t hurt your ears or skin when worn for long periods of time. With an IPX4 certification, you won’t have any issues in the rain or when things get hot and humid. The right earbud has all of the music controls as well as a dual microphone. They’re simple to operate, and the Bluetooth connection is reliable for both Apple and Android users.
We believe Bose could have done a better job in this area. When completely charged, they only have a 5-hour life. We’ve already mentioned that five hours isn’t quite enough. It’s even more so for a device with this kind of price tag. The high-quality carrying case will offer you two more 5-hour charges, but it won’t help bikers on an average trip.
The sound quality is excellent. Their sound signature is lovely and well-balanced. The bass is powerful and deep. Even in the lower mids, the mids are clear and distinct. The trebles are precise and crisp. In terms of audio quality, these are the best cycling headphones available. Bose is known for its high-quality speakers, and the Bose SoundSport Free earphones do not disappoint. We believe its high audio quality more than justifies their premium price.
AfterShokz Aeropex – Open-Ear Bluetooth Bone Conduction Sport Headphones
- Rebranding Update - Aftershokz Aeropex has been renamed as Shokz OpenRun. Welcome to SHOKZ!
- Open-Ear Design - Patented bone conduction headphones deliver premium audio through the cheekbone. Unlike over ear headphones, Aeropex keeps you...
- Lightweight & Comfortable - Experience unmatched comfort with our most lightweight and comfortable sport headset, featuring a bud-free, pain-free...
The audio signal is processed through your cheekbones by the AfterShokz Aeropex Open-Ear Wireless headphones. There is nothing in your inner ear thanks to its revolutionary bone conduction audio signal transfer. Also, there’s nothing covering your ear. It’s a brilliant idea, and it’s as if they were thinking of us, the riders. It’s ideal to be able to listen to music while also being able to hear what’s going on around you – what a fantastic safety feature.
The fact that they are composed of heavyweight plastic and are long-lasting is even better news. They’re IP67 rated, meaning they’ll keep you dry on an average ride. You won’t get tired of wearing these because they’re very comfortable and only weigh 26 grams. These are Bluetooth headphones with a connection speed of 4.2. The signal does not drop out and remains constant. On a full charge, they can run for eight hours in regular mode. A ten-minute charge will extend your battery life by ten hours. In two hours, they can be fully charged.
Jabra Elite Active 75t True Wireless Bluetooth Earbuds
- SECURE ACTIVE FIT – We scanned thousands of ears to create the best-fitting earbuds for a sport that we’ve ever created, with a special grip...
- ACTIVE NOISE CANCELLATION: With these noise cancelling earbuds, you can filter out the world and focus on your music; Use the Jabra Sound plus App to...
- CRYSTAL-CLEAR CALLS – 4 microphones, the latest digital signal processing and pioneering beam form technology mean these Jabra earbuds offer great...
The sound reproduction on the Jabra Elite Active 75t Bluetooth headphones is bass-boosted, although it may be equalized through the Jabra app. It works well with many forms of music, but it works best with modern, bassy genres. The Jabra Elite Active 75t is at the top of the list due to its excellent ambient sound mode awareness. They can be used with the HearThrough mode despite having high passive noise isolation.
The four microphones collect up more ambient noise and direct it toward you. They also feature active noise dampening mode after an upgrade. And, especially if you’re wearing riding gloves, physical controls are easier to use than touch controls. The microphone can also be used to make hands-free phone calls or provide commands to your voice assistant. You’re receiving high-quality headphones for the hardest terrains like mountain biking, with a 7-hour battery life and full water and dust protection.
Apple AirPods Pro
- Active noise cancellation for immersive sound
- Transparency mode for hearing and connecting with the world around you
- Three sizes of soft, tapered silicone tips for a customizable fit
It wouldn’t be a decent headphone review without mentioning the now-ubiquitous and eye-catching Apple Airpods Pro. Although the dangling style may not be to everyone’s liking, its popularity is well-deserved. They’re also great for cycling because of the transparency mode. Microphones pump in ambient noise in this mode, allowing you to hear everything going on around you while listening. They’re also quite flexible off the bike thanks to the active noise cancellation technology.
The Apple Airpods Pro have a 5-hour battery life, however the quick charging features (15 minutes for an extra 3 hours of listening) help to compensate for the short battery life. They’re exceptionally pleasant to wear thanks to the unique ear tip design. They are unobtrusive, and you may not even realize they are in your ear. Long days in the saddle won’t be a problem with this.
The controls of the Airpods Pro are controlled by a force sensor. Although the controls can be customized to some extent via the app, the volume on the pods cannot be changed.
Powerbeats Pro Wireless Earbuds – Apple H1 Headphone Chip
- Totally wireless high-performance earphones
- Up to 9 hours of listening time (more than 24 hours with charging case)
- Adjustable, secure-fit earhooks for lightweight comfort and stability
The PowerBeats Pro are the best bass headphones for cycling. The Bluetooth headphones have a lively V-shaped signature with an emphasis on bass and treble. Even though they contain ear hooks, most individuals should be able to wear them beneath a helmet. Keep in mind that, despite their excellent noise isolation, they may emit some wind noise.
They’re lightweight and cord-free, making them impossible to tangle with. The fit is quite comfortable and does not require any alterations. The IPX4 water resistance rating for rain and perspiration protection protects sports earphones from the elements. Additionally, the built-in H1 chip offers good communication for Apple devices. With the built-in mics on the two earbuds, you can also make phone calls or issue voice instructions from your bike. You’ll get roughly 11 hours of use each charge (24 hours with the case), and charging takes less than an hour.
Jabra Elite Active 65t Alexa Enabled True Wireless Sports Earbuds with Charging Case
- True wireless earbuds for an active lifestyle – Wherever your day takes you, whatever your activity, it won’t get in the way of enjoying sports,...
- Personalize your sound – Whether you’re using these as Apple earbuds, Samsung earbuds or more, you can listen to your music the way you want to...
- No audio dropouts – With Jabra’s 3rd generation true wireless stability, you can take calls and listen to music without worry about audio...
The Jabra Elite Active 65t wireless earbuds are among the best on the market, with great sound, a secure fit, and perfect communication, according to Runner’s World. The ambient aware mode is what riders will benefit from: Users can engage HearThrough mode and control the amount of ambient noise they want using the Jabra app. Increase the volume for outdoor riding or reduce it to relax while not on the bike. (Just keep in mind that when you’re going at any speed, you’ll largely hear nothing but the wind.) We’ve been nothing but impressed with these well-designed buds after a month of testing.
Anker Soundcore Spirit SweatGuard
- IPX7 Sweat Guard Technology：Truly sweat proof technology specially designed to resist the corrosive properties of sweat.
- Musical Motivation：Crystal-clear sound is delivered through premium composite drivers.
- Ergonomic Design：The cable clip keeps the neckband off your neck, while the specially designed Earwigs and Ear tip provide a secure, yet comfortable...
We don’t expect a pair of earbuds to be spectacular for $33, but at this price, decent quality and functionality should be appreciated. Jessica Coulon, assistant digital editor, claimed the cheap buds sounded better than her wired Skullcandys, however they lacked bass. However, they stay put and have an IPX7 waterproof rating, so sweat and rain should be no problem. We’d just ride with one bud in because the buds establish a secure seal in the ear and don’t allow in much ambient noise.
adidas RPT-01 Bluetooth Sport On-Ear Headphones
- Sweat proof & Water resistant (IPX4)
- Up to 40 hours of playtime
- Control knob for easy interaction
The Adidas RPT-01 are the ideal headphones for cyclists if you like to hammer every session hard and not be distracted by anything other than a dirty large wall of sound. They consistently score high marks for play time battery life and their outstanding ability to withstand a tough life, such as being stuffed inside a kit bag and rolling around without protection, and still be ready for your next session with more than enough battery life.
The headphones’ sound is controlled by an on-ear button, which also lets you to accept calls, activate voice control (when coupled with a compatible Bluetooth device), and shuffle playlists forward/backward. However, there is no amplification or noise cancellation option. It means removing a headphone to hear a youngster in another room, which isn’t ideal for someone training at home who has to keep an ear out, or if you opt to use outside and hear other ambient sounds.
If you enjoy the notion of an over-the-ear exercise headphone but need something more workout-focused than the Jabra, Adidas has a solution. There is an IPX4 rating, and the fabric covers on the ear cups and inside headband can be removed for washing. You won’t be entirely secluded without active noise cancellation. However, the settings on the headphones will help you avoid fiddling with your phone while working out.
Shokz OpenRun Pro Premium Bone Conduction Open-Ear Bluetooth Sport Headphones
- Open-Ear Comfort - OpenRun Pro features our best fit yet. Avoid the discomfort of in-ear headphones with our bud-free design. These headphones stay...
- Safety & Connection - OpenRun Pro ensures you enjoy your favorite audio with awareness of your environment for improved connection and safety compared...
- Premium Sound Quality - Experience premium audio delivered through your cheekbone with our 9th bone conduction technology. Engineered with Shokz...
They felt quite light while worn, and even dynamic movement was unrestricted. We only had to fiddle with the fit/position off the bike during a ‘laid down’ core exercise, which is a huge plus for anyone with small ears who has to constantly poke their earphones back in.
The Shokz does not have a noise cancellation option, allowing for persistent spatial awareness. This makes them an excellent choice for anyone who has to keep an ear out for traffic or who wants to practice at home while hearing. However, if you want complete auditory immersion, this is something to consider.
Any reservations regarding the sound quality are baseless. Although a tiny lag on the Bluetooth connection was occasionally noticeable, we found the sound to be consistently adequate, with minimum leaking to the outside world.
Cycling Headphones Buying Guide
Follow this advice when selecting headphones for the optimal cycling experience:
Try Before Buying
Test out the comfort, fit, and stability firsthand by wearing the cycling headphones. Move around to gauge secureness. Consider sizing options.
Models that let in ambient sound keep you aware of your surroundings to cycle safely. Or opt for quick transparency/ambient modes to hear when needed.
Ensure the headphones can withstand sweat, rain, and moisture. Cycling subjects headphones to the elements so durability is a must.
Cycling headphones with longer battery life allow you to ride for extended distances and durations without recharging. Consider quick charging.
Snug but Not Tight
Avoid headphones that feel uncomfortable over time. The best cycling headphones maintain a secure fit without excessive squeezing or pressure.
Check Bluetooth connection stability at cycling distances from your device. Headphones with antenna boosters maintain solid connectivity outdoors.
Frequently Asked Questions
Are headphones safe for cycling?
Used properly, cycling headphones can be safe and beneficial. Models allowing ambient sound awareness keep you alert to your surroundings. Opt for reasonable volume levels.
Where should I mount my phone?
Phone mounts on the handlebars or stem position your device conveniently in sight. Use a weatherproof case. Or mount the phone on your body with an armband.
Can sweat damage cycling headphones?
Excessive sweat can damage earbuds and headphones if not weather resistant. Seek water, sweat and splashproof cycling models that can withstand wetness.
Are bone conduction headphones good for cycling?
Yes, open-ear bone conduction headphones allow hearing while delivering audio through cheek vibrations. This bone conduction design maintains environmental awareness crucial for cycling.
Should I get wireless earbuds or headphones?
It depends on your preferences. True wireless earbuds prioritize an ultra-lightweight and streamlined profile. But on-ear and over-ear headphones often provide better battery life and audio. Evaluate pros and cons.