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Music to my ears

Old 08-11-13, 08:30 AM
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Music to my ears

For a couple of years now I've plugged buds into my ears when riding, locally or touring. I don't consider it a safety issue, as my rearview tells me what I need to know about what's behind and I wear high vis. Hearing them coming ain't likely to stop the texter or drunk from running over me.

Thoughts? Negative experiences?
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Old 08-11-13, 08:36 AM
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yep, I generally carry two iPods with me, the larger loaded with 16 g of music, the smaller one loaded with a couple audio books. They can make the long miles go by more quickly and I try to keep the volume down where I can still hear my surroundings.
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Old 08-11-13, 08:43 AM
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I find them to be a distraction, I enjoy riding my bike to get away from all the tech that intrudes upon our lives daily.
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Old 08-11-13, 09:03 AM
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Never, I find it too distracting.
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Old 08-11-13, 09:17 AM
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Not tried it yet...I will say it scares me...i might get me one of those mini speakers though...i like to hear a little bit of ambient nise specially dogs...
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Old 08-11-13, 09:30 AM
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Until a few years ago I attended several meetings with a number of Dept of Transportation Engineers. These are the guys that did the design and oversee highway construction, they are not the ones driving dozers around, thus they often worked while walking around on the construction sites near traffic lanes. More than once I heard them complaining that new hybrid cars were so quiet that the cars could be almost on top of them before they realized it. They described several close calls of workmen (and women) near the traffic lane and did not realize a car was coming until it was almost alongside them.

That said, I still would rather listen for the traffic than tune it out. I use a mirror, but I do not look in my mirror every 5 or 10 or 15 seconds.
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Old 08-11-13, 09:40 AM
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I put on music sometimes on busy roads with shoulders. Engine noise gets to my nerves after a while.
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Old 08-11-13, 11:05 AM
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When I'm on my mtb commuting, I generally have my buds in unless I want to take a break from the music and just listen to the sounds of the road. I keep the volume down to the point where I can still hear the outside world, and check what's around me very often. On my road bike, I have yet to do it, even on a trail. Maybe it's because I'm going considerably faster and don't want to take the risk, or maybe it's cause I enjoy the swish swish of the tires and little subtle clicking of the drivetrain as I go.
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Old 08-11-13, 11:13 AM
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Btw,
tons of long threads on this topic over in the road forum in case one gets bored.
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Old 08-11-13, 11:16 AM
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I tried listening to my ipod a couple of times on the beach bike path. I didn't like it. It takes away from the riding experience rather than add to it for me. I would feel unsafe wearing them on the road since I wouldn't be able to hear and monitor traffic around me. I also enjoy the freedom I feel on my bike, being in my surroundings and having all my senses engaged.
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Old 08-11-13, 04:52 PM
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Originally Posted by Cyclebum
For a couple of years now I've plugged buds into my ears when riding, locally or touring. I don't consider it a safety issue, as my rearview tells me what I need to know about what's behind and I wear high vis. Hearing them coming ain't likely to stop the texter or drunk from running over me.

Thoughts? Negative experiences?
I use these and while I don't have them on my helmet I do have them mounted on a bar at the back of my bent. They offer great sound when you want some music and doesn't imped surrounding noises. Each speaker and main amp is about the size of a match box plus extremely light. I have toured with mine allot and even been through belting thunderstorms. They claim there water resistance but I think there being a little on the cautious side. They use a 3.5mm jack to run off your phone or blue tooth so best of both worlds. With blue tooth I don't have the volume up very load but if you plug the 3.5mm jack into the unit there is a big jump in sound so your looking to turn them down when using the jack. Quality product but not a cheap option I got mine of ebay for $124.00 USD

https://soundryderaudio.com/
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Old 08-11-13, 05:11 PM
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For me it would be wildly dangerous because I just get too sucked into the music and lose awareness of my surroundings. I also don't like listening to music on low volume or in one ear so I don't do it at all unless I am off road.
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Old 08-11-13, 05:12 PM
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I ride my unicycle quite often with music. I also ride on and off sidewalks and generally do tons of unsafe things.

On a bicycle I rarely ride with earphones, but touring this summer some of the guys brought mp3 players and used them for only one thing: Climbing long climbs. For that they were great because you can zone in and enjoy the music instead of focusing on your legs burning at 6 mph.

I say use them if you want. Know there's a risk of not being able to hear traffic. I think with a mirror it's probably fine unless you're in a busy area with a lot of stop lights. Even then it's your choice.
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Old 08-11-13, 05:22 PM
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Originally Posted by Cyclebum
For a couple of years now I've plugged buds into my ears when riding, locally or touring. I don't consider it a safety issue, as my rearview tells me what I need to know about what's behind and I wear high vis. Hearing them coming ain't likely to stop the texter or drunk from running over me.

Thoughts? Negative experiences?

I guess it's depends on the type of riding, everyone has a different opinion on an issue like this, depending on how "they" ride, if you just tool around and wind noise isn't an issue earphones (etymotic er4's here) are a delight, but if you push and wind noise is prevalent, well, why add noise to a dangerous environment? I only ride for exercise(heart and lungs), no earphones, (rollerskating and snowboarding "alpine" require them) jmho,ymmv
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Old 08-11-13, 05:59 PM
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Probably doesn't make any difference once you start bumping into the seventh decade as your hearing deteriorates and you probably shouldn't rely on it anyway. But I still do because I have a lot of blind intersections and my mirror doesn't look around corners. I understand the odds of getting hit from the front and side are much greater than from the rear.
People say the new electrics are too quite but the noise I hear first comes from the tires and not the engine or exhaust. Maybe they put less aggressive tread on the electrics to reduce rolling resistance and they are quieter that way too.
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Old 08-12-13, 06:13 AM
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I aim for a compromise solution. I listen to audio books most of the time when I ride, both in San Francisco and on tour. The great things about audio books is that they only require one earbud, are often both interesting and enlightening, and can be played at a low volume. I use a special one-eared headset that will also play both channels of music into one ear. This way, the ear facing traffic is open for road noise.

When I was riding in Texas, its infamous chip seal had the odd benefit of increasing the noise made by vehicle tires. I often could hear them well before I could see them one ear and all!

When the book is particularly good, I sometimes wonder if my desire to ride is really just wanting to listen to more of the book!

The few times I have toured without something to listen to have been much less enjoyable than those where I had interesting books to read.
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Old 08-12-13, 09:02 AM
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I listen to music on my workout rides --where I know the route and course issues very well. I'm less likely to wear them while touring unfamiliar roads or in groups (rude). I have mirrors on all my bikes. My all time favorites are the Koss over-the-ear foam models (KSC75 I think). They don't seal out ambient noise totally. They seem to actually cut down wind noise compared to no headphones. And they allow me to waft music directly into my ears without locking out the rest of the world.
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Old 08-12-13, 09:16 AM
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Originally Posted by 12bar
I find them to be a distraction, I enjoy riding my bike to get away from all the tech that intrudes upon our lives daily.

Agreed. I find riding peaceful and enjoy letting my mind wander in the natural noise. I often hear cars before I can see them, especially at cross roads.
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Old 08-12-13, 09:40 AM
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Originally Posted by BohicaX
I use these and while I don't have them on my helmet I do have them mounted on a bar at the back of my bent. They offer great sound when you want some music and doesn't imped surrounding noises. Each speaker and main amp is about the size of a match box plus extremely light. I have toured with mine allot and even been through belting thunderstorms. They claim there water resistance but I think there being a little on the cautious side. They use a 3.5mm jack to run off your phone or blue tooth so best of both worlds. With blue tooth I don't have the volume up very load but if you plug the 3.5mm jack into the unit there is a big jump in sound so your looking to turn them down when using the jack. Quality product but not a cheap option I got mine of ebay for $124.00 USD

https://soundryderaudio.com/
+1

I tried using a single earbud, but found it didn't stay in consistently and never wanted to use both just in case it diminished my hearing of surrounding warning sounds. After reading an article about this product in Adventure Cycling I picked it up. You do need to keep the volume to a reasonable level if you want to hear surrounding sounds; however, it seems much more convenient and comfortable than wearing ear plug type headphones. Only draw back is it is another device that requires recharging (USB power source)
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Old 08-12-13, 09:43 AM
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It's the ones you don't see/hear that run you over.....

Mirrors are great but it doesn't take the place of looking over your shoulder.....

It's your hiney.....
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Old 08-12-13, 09:52 AM
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Originally Posted by Booger1
Mirrors are great but it doesn't take the place of looking over your shoulder.....
Mine does. I see better in my mirror than by looking over my shoulder. I only look over when I need to change lane. My mirror is more reliable than my ears too.
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Old 08-12-13, 10:12 AM
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I never ride without them when I'm home.

When I toured last summer, I didn't have them for 1,500 miles.

I sang to my friends instead.

This next tour, I'll be solo, and will be bringing a small iPod Shuffle.
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Old 08-12-13, 10:47 AM
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I use a AAA battery powered San Disk mp3 player with a powerful little AA-powered speaker I found on eBay. Mine doesn't seem to be available anymore, but there are plenty of others listed right now.

I find the speaker doesn't distract me at all and does not hinder my ability to hear what's going on around me. At this point, rarely do I ever get on the bike without music playing.
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Old 08-12-13, 11:07 AM
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I would find constantly looking in my rear view mirror a PITA, especially when I am trying to focus on what's in front of me.
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Old 08-12-13, 11:08 AM
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I used to use earbuds. Now I keep my phone in a little cellphone/wallet pouch that sits up near my right shoulder on my backpack should strap. It streams pandora when I bike and is loud enough to hear and enjoy while not drowing out traffic noises.
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