The new pink vPulse are in stock now. Three lucky people will have a chance to win a pair of these highly coveted in-ear headphones which retail at $99. It’s easy to enter – just go to our website, and pin the pink vPulse image to one of your pinboards to get started. Complete the rafflecopter below and you will be entered to win!
by Penny Lane on April 5, 2012
Personal audio products are invaluable to many of us who can’t live without our music. When I run long distances, nothing keeps me more motivated than invigorating songs. I am fortunate that my current set of earbuds have been with me for over a year, so I haven’t experienced much downtime. Time and time again, I hear of friends complaining that their earphones from all price ranges have stopped working, sometimes after only a few months. Some choose to stick with cheaper brands and go through them like crazy, not thinking twice about tossing them out for a new pair. This practice can become expensive over time. It is ideal to keep them in good working order for as long as possible, especially if you splurged on a pricier set. Here are some tips to keep in mind to give your earphones the best possible chance at a longer life.
- Keep them in a case when not in use. This doesn’t have to be anything fancy, or even specifically for earphones. The goal is to prevent exposure to debris. A roomy pouch or sack that will prevent the cord from getting crimped, caught or tangled is ideal. Avoid stuffing them into your pants pocket, which is very popular, as excessive rubbing and pulling could damage the cord.
- Treat them gently. It seems the most common method of “caring” for earphones – which I don’t recommend – is to wrap the cord around iPods or other listening devices. In general, try to avoid tightly wrapping or folding the cord, and unplug it from your listening device. When unplugging the cord, grasp the plug rather than pull on the cord.
- Replace foam covers from time to time. Some earphones have foam that covers the earbud that is inserted into your ear canal. This material can break down over time and is not meant to last forever. Fortunately, these covers are very inexpensive to replace.
- Keep them away from water. Submerging your earphones or holding them under running water generally won’t end well. Just sayin’.
- Keep them clean. Dirt, oils and earwax may interfere with listening quality. There are different cleaning methods recommended depending on your specific type of earphone, but a soft cloth with a dab of rubbing alcohol should safely remove any debris from your earbud. If your earbuds come with removable parts, such as a silicone cover, cleaning these occasionally will prevent buildup as well.
If your earphones have stopped working, try cleaning them before you give up on them and move on to another pair. Otherwise, check your warranty information to see if you are eligible for a replacement.
How do you store your earphones when not in use? If you have any other recommendations for general care or tips for prolonging the life of in-ear headphones we’d love to hear them!
by admin on January 19, 2012
There are a lot of terms to describe different kinds of headphones: Bluetooth, noise canceling, in-ear, earbuds, earphones, on-ear, over-ear, studio…and sometimes it’s hard to keep track of what each of them really mean. That’s why we’ve assembled a short glossary of terms to help you keep them all straight! Without further ado:
What is Bluetooth?
Bluetooth is a wireless technology that connects portable devices using short-length radio waves.
Bluetooth headphones are often used with stereo Bluetooth-ready phones & computers. Bluetooth is a relatively short-range transmission method, allowing connection between devices up to about 30 feet apart. Some wireless headphones, however, can transmit longer distances and can be used anywhere in the home or office.
In-Ear or Ear Bud Headphones
In-ear headphones offer great sound in a small, lightweight, and portable package. They are excellent for on-the-go cell phone and music listening.
In-ear headphones (also called in-ear monitors, IEM, earphones, ear canal headphones, ear buds, and canal-phones) are small earphones that fit into and seal the ear canal. In-ear headphones are commonly used by pro performers to monitor sound mixes; this prevents possible feedback from stage monitors and isolates the artist from audience noise.
The Velodyne vPulse in-ear headphones fit snug in the ear canal and thus provide the best isolation and reduction of ambient noise. In-ear headphones help to ensure safe listening levels since they block ambient sounds so thoroughly you won’t have to turn the music up loud just to overcome noisy environments. The vPulse come with a variety of different sizes / types of eartip sleeves; it’s important to experiment to find the tip that works best for you. To get solid bass from in-ear headphones it is CRITICAL that you have a securely tight eartip seal within your ear canal. The Velodyne in-ear headphones, like most in-ear headphones, are efficient enough to work well directly out of an iPod or portable player without necessitating a headphone amp.
About Studio Headphones
Studio headphones are full size headphones which fit completely around the ear for a rich and sensual sound experience.
Full size headphones may be open-back, closed, wireless or noise-canceling types. Generally speaking, full size headphones are the most comfortable to wear for listening around the home or office, but they are often too large for portable use. Some are easily powered and will reach satisfactory volume and sound quality direct from an iPod/iPhone, computer or portable player without the need for a headphone amp. Studio headphones will typically fit all the way around the ear (circumaural) and work best with home stereo equipment and/or headphone amps. All professional, high-end and audiophile full size headphones should be driven with a dedicated headphone amplifier for best acoustic performance.
What are Closed Headphones?
Closed headphones, aka sealed or closed-back headphones, have an enclosed, non-vented earpiece to most effectively block out ambient noise. Closed headphones are often used by DJs.
Closed headphones, also known as sealed headphones, have a solid-backed earcup construction preventing noise from leaking into or out of the headphone. Closed headphones block ambient noise and also prevent those nearby from hearing your music. Closed-back designs may be either full size (circumaural) or earpad (supra-aural) types, and all noise canceling headphones are also closed-back. Audio professionals such as DJs and location recordists – and also portable listeners — will often choose closed headphones. The sound quality of closed cans has continuously improved in recent years and some can now compete directly with the top open-back headphones.
About On-Ear Headphones
Also known as ‘supra-aural’ headphones, on-ear headphones have earpieces that will gently rest on the earlobes.
Earpad — or ‘on-ear’ — headphones are available in open, closed, and noise canceling types, and can vary greatly in size. On-ear headphones come in both open and closed-back earcup designs. They usually have a standard over-the-head headband (some fold for compact transport or storage), but earpad headphones can also be behind the neck or clip-on types as well. Closed back or sealed earpad headphones can isolate from some mild ambient noise, but typically not as well as closed-back studio, full size headphones.
Headset headphones let you talk while you listen with a built-in microphone. Compatible with iPhones & other cell phones, headsets include all types of headphones including Bluetooth, wired, full-size, and earbud style.
Headsets are designed to let you listen AND talk, and are commonly used with cell phones. There are many different types of headsets: wired mono (one earpiece) and stereo (two earpieces) headsets, earpad headsets, in-ear headsets, full size closed headsets, Bluetooth headsets, USB headsets and more. You can also turn any pair of headphones into a headset by adding a headset adapter with a microphone.
Noise Canceling Headphones and How They Work
Noise canceling headphones are designed to insulate you from outside noise by using ‘active’ battery-powered electronics.
Noise canceling headphones use tiny built-in microphones in the earpieces to sense ambient noise around the headphones with an active (battery powered) electronic circuit that amplifies and inverts those signals, then adds them into the music signal to ‘cancel’ the acoustic noise pressure present at the earpieces. Noise canceling headphones are designed primarily to block airline/train cabin noise during travel and usually isolate sound better than a basic closed headphone.
Clip-On or Wing-Style Headphones for Activity
Clip-on headphones, or ear-clip headphones, are designed to stay in place during physical activity.
Clip-on headphones and wing adaptions stay secure on the ear for listening while you are in motion. They are lightweight and compact, and you’ll be able to stay aware of your surroundings while running or walking. Waterproof styles are available for swimming. The clip-on style headphones will usually fit under a skateboard or bicycle helmet.
Now that you’re armed with knowledge, you can make an informed decision about which headphone type is perfect for you. Happy listening!
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My name is AudiOdysseus. Admittedly, I would never describe myself as a hero of any kind and I tend to get seasick in open water. But I love adventure. There is nothing I appreciate more than exploring new territories and gathering information about the world around me. Those are also the types of posts you can expect from me. I’ll be writing mostly about new gadgets, emerging trends, and my work-related travels to other lands.
I'm passionate about music, a lover of pop-culture, a runner with a mad sweet tooth and an addiction to coffee. Read my musings about life, movie soundtracks and live concerts. If you see me on the freeway I am most likely singing very loudly in my car. Honk and say hi!
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Ace of Bass
Born and bred in the Silicon Valley, I have an innate passion for all things technology. I'll post about home theater, quality sound, apps and much more. If I bump into you, its probably because I'm looking at my iPhone. Sorry!
College student and Velodyne intern. I love social media and journalism. Hail To Pitt.
Owner of vPulse and vFree and curious for the ventures of Velodyne Acoustics, I will be exploring our headphones and what we do next. Stay tuned as I share what I find.
Really, there’s no deep meaning behind my name. I’m the Summer Muse because I started writing here during the summer, I absolutely adore music, and I often lose myself in my musings. I take walks with my dog, read Yahoo! Finance news, chase seagulls, and am an absolute master baker... of pecan pies. I hope to one day be a New York Times Bestselling Author... or an astrophysicist. I haven't decided yet.
Born and raised in Silicon Valley, I am a student at San Jose State University and Marketing intern at Velodyne Acoustics. I am an avid San Jose Sharks hockey fan and San Francisco 49ers football fan. When I'm not watching sports, I'm listening to music and thinking deep thoughts about sound.