I'm into podcasts. If there is anything tedious on my todo list I usually throw on a podcast and the job seems to get done without much thought.
This is why when I bought my first house and ended up with a lawn to take care of I went searching for a new pair of headphones.
Most of the headphones I owned at the time were created for mixing and mastering music. Besides, I wasn't too keen on bringing a $300 set of headphones out to do my lawn work.
Before I started my research I made a list of things I was looking for:
- Noise Isolation
Should I Go With Earbuds Or Over-Ear Headphones?
There are a few things we need to be thinking about when comparing over-ear headphones with earbuds.
First, the fact that over-ear headphones can get hot. I don't know about you, but I tend to sweat when I'm mowing the lawn. A set of over-ear headphones can act as winter earmuffs - no air gets in or out (that's the key to good sound isolation.)
On the other hand, earbuds tend to do less well when it comes to sound isolation (especially when you consider passive sound isolation.) I first thought that using active noise canceling earbuds was the better option, unfortunately they failed completely.
However, I've actually found a set of earbuds that work almost as well as earplugs -Ruckus Earplug Earbuds. They reduce the sound level by 25 decibels (or a NRR - noise reduction ratio - of 25.) The sound quality isn't as good as the Aventrees, but they are only $30! A great set of earbuds for working around the house!
I actually discovered them while researching headphones to use while riding my motorcycle.
- WORKPLACE ENHANCEMENT: The power is yours to decide what you listen to, not dictated by surrounding jackhammers
- NOISE REDUCING DESIGN: Engineered to seal out noise and carries the EPA's NRR (Noise Reduction Rating) of 25 decibels recognized by OSHA to meet ANSI standards
As you can see below, lawn mowers are typcially around 90 db. That means, with an NRR of 25, you'll be brought down into normal conversation range.
I'm very protective when it comes to my hearing. So blasting earbuds at max volume to compete with the lawn mower is not an option. It's either over the ear, or the earplug style earbuds shown above.
Should I Pull The Trigger With Bluetooth Headphones?
This is one case where I think spending the extra money on getting Bluetooth connectivity is going to pay off. When you are mowing the lawn, the last thing you want to deal with is a cord getting caught and pulling on your headphones.
Luckily, Bluetooth technology is actually really impressive these days. You're getting a functional battery life as well as no loss in audio quality.
The only downside is you're going to have to pay a little more. If you're on a budget, then don't worry about it. But if you're going to be using the headphones a lot, it's something worth considering.
Should I Really Be Concerned With Durability?
If you think you'd prefer over-ear headphones, then I think you should definitely consider the different durability levels of headphones. Some headphones are just designed to be worn inside and don't come with components that can take a beating.
You're going to want to look for a flexible headband as well as a replaceable cable if possible. I hate having to replace an entire set of headphones when the cable breaks.
DJ headphones tend to be the most durable headphones on the market. They also are generally great in terms of sound isolation.
How Can I Tell If A Set Of Headphones Is Comfortable Enough For Lawn Mowing?
If you haven't owned a lot of headphones, it can be difficult to pick the winners from the losers without actually trying them on. Even I sometimes get it wrong. Sometimes, headphones just aren't going to work with certain head shapes.
Unfortunately, there is always a tradeoff between comfort and sound isolation. The tighter the headphone presses against your head, the more sound isolation you are going to get (makes sense.)
There are plenty of good headphones out there that have a great reputation for finding the balance between these two features (see my recommendation below.)
How Much Should I Be Spending Here?
Over-ear Bluetooth headphones with decent sound isolation aren't going to be cheap (and you'll want to avoid them if they are.) But the good news is you will be able to use them for much more than mowing the lawn. Just think of how easy other lawn maintenance work will be if you are free from the dangling headphone cable!?
However, you may be able to get away with cheaper over-ear headphones because they naturally have enough sound isolation to work with mowing the lawn. You will still have to pay a little extra for Bluetooth.
The good news is, we're looking at under $100 for both types.
So What Headphones Did I Buy For Mowing The Lawn?
After a ton of research, I decided to pull the trigger on the Aventree Bluetooth headphones. These headphones have made themselves quite the reputation and I was just looking for an excuse to get my hands on a pair.
There were 4 reasons why I bought them: 40 hour battery life, Bluetooth connection, super comfortable, and under $50.
As I mentioned before, I don't want to be spending over $100 on a pair of headphones that I will be using for yard work.
So how do they work?
Fantastic. They are exactly what I was looking for. They connect easily, block out the noise, are fairly comfortable, and are lightweight.
What else could I ask for?
My only complaint is that they will be a little hot on really sunny days. But really, there aren't any other viable options. I tried with earbuds and they just won't work.
Again, these headphones are incredibly popular and I expect you'd be able to use them for much more than just lawn mowing.
- SUPERIOR Hi-Fi SOUND: Experience High-Resolution sound with aptX Hi-Fi technology. Excellent sound reproduction with wide audio range producing rich bass and clear treble, challenging many much higher priced headphones on the market.
- LONG BATTERY LIFE & DUAL MODE: Enjoy up to an amazing 40 hours of music play time in wireless mode. Or use the included 3.5mm cable to switch to a wired connection and use your phone without draining any battery at all. Change from wireless headphones to wired headphones in seconds. (Kindly notice: No Microphone in wired mode)
So there you have it. This is just one more example of how modern technology is making out lives easier with each passing year.
I remember taking out my minidisc player and blasting my earbuds at full volume just to hear my music when mowing my families lawn. How things have changed!
Have any other suggestions? Feel free to drop them in the comments below!
Until next time!