Best for Getting Wet

When you're underwater, sound quality isn't a big concern

Jan 4, 2012
Outside Magazine
H2O Audio Surge Sportwrap 2G Waterproof Headphones

H2O Audio Surge Sportwrap 2G Waterproof Headphones    Photo: Courtesy of H2O Audio

I was initially skeptical about H2O Audio's Surge Sportwrap 2G Waterproof Headphones, since anything that can be immersed in water “for an unlimited amount of time” must sacrifice something in the sound department. And these do, but as I swam laps in them, with some good music taking my mind off the arm-slapping monotony, I was forced to admit that the sound quality was perfectly acceptable, especially for $50. And it turns out that they are designed for much more vigorous use, like surfing or paddling, when you might get your head stuck in the spin cycle. I didn't love the sport band—its cord protrudes at the base of the neck and pressed into my skin when I looked upward—but it did remind me that the headphones were still connected to my noggin. I also liked the coiled cable, an idea that shouldn’t have taken this long to come to sport headphones, given that we had one on our home phone in 1970. Pair these with one of the company’s Amphibx waterproof armbands ($50–$60) for your iPod and you're good to go.

Price: $50