STASH

Best Snowboarding Headphones 2017

Epic Stash

Last updated: 11th January 2017

Music on the hill is not for everyone but for those that do love it, this snowboarding headphones guide will help you find the best headphones for riding with.

 

Sometimes we all could do with a big of extra motivation on the hill. Maybe you’re a little sluggish from the previous day’s apres session or you need some extra fire to get you over a massive kicker. In either case, music can be your best friend.

But what’s the use of this secret weapon without the perfect pair of headphones to wear while you ride? Below is our guide to the best headphones for snowboarding. Feel Free to comment any others you like to use and we might add them in to the list.

Types of Headphones for Snowboarding

There are a couple of styles you can choose from. The three broad categories are in-ear, over-ear, or on-ear. There are advantages and disadvantages of each type and it often comes down to personal preference based on comfort, but your style of riding is also important to consider.

In ear
In ear or ear buds are usually my preferred choice for riding, purely because they’re lightweight, cheap(ish), and comfortable under beanies and helmets. Plus you have the option to ride with one earphone in and one out, to help you stay aware of your surroundings.

On ear

These have grown in popularity due to pros wearing them in their park edits, in particular during summer sessions. Eg Torstein Horgmo.

Over ear

To be honest Ive never seen anyone riding in over ear headphones but I will list out a few options because these are my choice for off the hill listening and are sweet for travelling with, especially the noise cancelling models.


Other Features

  • In line mic/controls
    Headphone models can have quite a hefty hike in price if an inline control is included. Yet this is something we recommend investing in as it can make a huge difference to your day when riding on the hill. Having the option to not have to get your iPhone out on the chair lift is definitely a bonus. Aside from getting frozen fingers, theres always the risk of dropping your £500 iPhone into the powder below. A small investment in this feature definitely seems worth it for that reason alone.
  • Waterproof
    Some models have a waterproof coating applied to them to help prevent against splash damage. Other models are full on water proof, however these are probably only required if you like a bit of off season wakeboarding or surfing. Generally though, especially with ear buds, you will have them so wrapped up under your gear that they’re unlikely to get any water damage. I’ve personally put a pair of Skull Candy ear buds through the washing machine in my jeans and they still worked after!
  • Wireless
    Wireless headphone tech has developed massively over the last couple of years and is becoming a popular option across most of the major brands. There are positives and negatives to going wireless. Obviously the main benefit is not having to wrestle with tangles wires or having them pulling on your ears under your jacket etc. However often there is a compromise in sound quality. Whether this is feature is applicable to you depends on what you plan on using the headphones for. If you are after top quality sound mainly for travelling then a wired option may be best as you may not need to worry about charging them up (except most noise cancelling models) and will have superior sound. However if you hate wires with a passion and need all the freedom of movement you can get from your gear to tweak that grab then wireless is the way forward.
  • Noise Cancelling
    Noise cancelling options have been around for a while. The more basic form of which is simply to make sure the fit around the ear is a flush as possible to prevent sound leakage or external noises. However active noise cancelling is usually powered by an extra power source by a standard battery or a built in rechargeable battery. These will actively work to filter out any external noises to give you the purest noise quality possible. Noise cancelling is most useful when travelling and not really a requirement for riding with, especially as you need to keep your ears open for other riders around you.

Best Snowboarding Headphones 2017

On Ear Headphones

Kicker Low Profile Headphones

Kicker Low Profile Headphones - Torstein Horgmo Headphones

These headphones were made famous in snowboarding by pro rider and huge music fan Torstein Horgmo. They are great for snowboarding due to the lack of moving parts which makes them much more durable and ready for a few slams in the park. Torstein usually wears them over his beanie as shown in the image. The low price of these headphones makes them a great option as if they break they can be easily replaced. Not one for extra bells and whistles, but if they’re good enough for Torstein then they won’t let you down.

Beats by Dr.Dre Solo3 Wireless On Ear Headphones

Beats Solo3 Wireless
These are an alternative to the over ear headphones by beats. Weather you prefer on-ear or over-ear demands on your own personal preference. The on ear models are smaller and therefore more portable. However the over-ear style may provide more noise cancellation. The Solo 3 models come in wireless and wires versions. The wireless model is slightly more expensive but gives you the option. One top tip is that when using the wired version the battery can last longer. a good idea if your are travelling.

Best Snowboarding Headphones 2017

Over Ear Headphones

Sony h.ear on wireless NC MDR-100ABN

Sony h.ear on wireless NC MDR-100ABN
Solid wireless sound quality combined with a reasonable price especially for a wireless model makes these Sony headphones worth a try.

Beats Studio Wireless

Beats Studio Wireless
This model of beats is not one for riding in unless you back yourself to never slam and only ride when its bluebird outside. However these are a great pair of headphones for off the mountain use. Noise cancelling and wireless makes them a dream for travelling, no wires, no screaming babies on flights, equals pure audio bliss. One caveat is to make sure you turn off these headphones as they don’t have a function to turn off after a certain amount of time without being used. Something I’ve had to learn the hard way when on a long haul flight.

Bose Quiet Comfort 35

Bose Quiet Comfort 35

Bose are a big name in the headphones industry. Perhaps had a reputation for being for middle ages commuters, however their new styling options of matt black, gun metal silver have made them appeal to a younger audience as well. Known for their superior sound quality across their range, the latest edition their flagship model the Quiet Comfort series does not disappoint. Probably not a pair for riding in but would be a great asset travelling between resorts and time zones.

In Ear Headphones

Skull Candy - Smoking’ Buds

Skull Candy - Smoking’ Buds
Skull Candy is a well known brand in the action sports arena and these entry level ear buds won’t let you down, especially if you are on a tight budget, or have a history of losing, breaking, washing machining earphones. Another key feature is the in line mic and controls. This can be especially useful on the hill when the risk of getting an iPhone out on the lift is too high, plus the chance go freezing your fingers off, having an easy to reach button to change the song, pause, etc is super useful.

Bose Quiet Comfort 20

Bose Quiet Comfort 20

Bose are usually known for their over or on ear headphones, however these in ears are a nice alternative for Bose fans. Most Bose products are not designed to stand up to snowboarding slams, however as these would be worn under a beanie / helmet then these may be a great combo of high quality sound and noise cancelling, with a more durable design than their larger over hear counter parts.

Snugs Originals S10

Snugs_Wireless_M9B_600x

Custom moulded in ear headphones are a more recent development and one that can provide an great solution for those that have struggled in the past with other inner styles. The custom mould is designed to increase comfort why minimising external noises and sound leakage, leading to the best possible sound quality. These would be a great choice for all day snowboarding comfort, though be careful to stay aware of those around you, probably best to keep one ear out and save the full noise cancelling experience for travelling.

Jaybird Freedom - Wireless Earbuds

Jaybird Freedom earphones
These headphones are surprisingly low profile for wireless headphones. They will easily fit  under a helmet and being wireless means you can keep your phone in any pocket you like or even a back pack. Definitely worth checking out if you are looking our for some wireless earbuds. The Jaybird Freedoms come with 3 sizes of ear buds and silicon ear tips to make sure these stay in your ears even when throwing big rotations.
Epic Stash
Bangers & Stash