I think that music is a big part of training and, consequently, earphones are a key piece of training equipment. Choosing earphones, especially for runners, can be a bit of a nightmares, as there’s all sorts of things to think about. What’s the sound quality like, do they stay in your ears, are they comfortable for long runs, do they bounce around, do they clip on to your kit properly, is the lead long enough to reach your music but not so long you end up with a wire zig zagged inside your vest just to stop all the excess bouncing around…? I could go on.
As I have previously stated, I am a huge fan of Yurbuds, but I am open to trying new things (and for telling you lovely lot all about them!) and so was really excited to try out a new set from Soul Electronics. They very kindly sent me the Flex High Performance Sports Headphones to test out, and I have assessed them against my very official criteria.
The sound quality is really good and the volume is loud, which I liked. Whether you’re racing to Metallica or pootling to Madonna, these babies will do it justice. They’re engineered with Soul’s signature sound and have been described as rivalling Beats for sound quality. I was really impressed.
Staying Put Skills
The Flex headphones come with four different ear bud sizes (XS-L) so they’re customisable to your own ear size for a snug fit. I have quite small ears and used the XS buds, and they popped in to my eyes very snugly and stayed put really well (they were so snug I couldn’t wear them with my tragus piercing). The Flex headphones kind of ‘plug’ your ears, so it feels a bit like a seal. This shuts out a lot of external noise, which is potentially dangerous for running, but great when all you want is to be shut in your own little musical world (i.e. in the gym!). The hook on top of the ears help keep the headphones in place when you’re running along too, and add that extra bit of security for runners who are particularly vigorous.
The longest I have worn these for is about an hour in total and I found them very comfortable in that time. They’re lightweight so don’t pull on your ears, and because you can choose the size of the ear buds there’s no sore ear problems that you can encounter when ear buds are too big. I found the hooks over the top of the ears virtually unnoticeable. The Flex headphones are ergonomically designed and I found they sat on top of my ears nicely.
Bounciness (encompassing Clippiness)
These were quite bouncy when I was running along (the remote is quite high up on the cable and it bounced around near my throat) and needed clipping on to my t-shirt as it was quite distracting. They do come with a little clip to attach to your kit which is effective enough but quite small – I’d like to see a slightly bigger, girthier clip to really secure the wires on the go.
Plenty long enough to reach your chosen musical device without needing snaking around under your top. The lead is a ribbon cable too so lays quite flat – another bonus.
I liked these headphones and thought the sound quality was really good. They’re very comfortable and fit very snugly. They shut out literally all noise, which could potentially be dangerous running outdoors, but is perfect in the gym to shut out the dude grunting while curling in the squat rack or the monotonous reeling of the dreadmill. The Flex Headphones are also water and sweat proof, so great for intense workouts or running in the rain.
The Flex Headphones from Soul Electronics are available online directly from Soul Electronics or from Amazon.
Soul Electronics kindly provided me with these headphones for review purposes, but as ever all opinions are my own.