Cordless Headphones


I'm a big fan of cordless headphones. I've had some since probably 1995. I don't remember if I originally got them for work or for home. I think it was for work. I found it annoying to use corded headphones and turn around or reach for something and trip over the wire or yank it out of the stereo or have the headphones yanked off my head.

Later, I got some for home. Since I left home I've always lived in an apartment so I can't crank the TV or stereo up at night to watch a movie. Wireless headphones made that problem go away and there were no wires to clean up. I can even walk to the kitchen late at night and still listen.

I think what happened after that, I had 1 pair at work and 1 at home. I moved to Japan and didn't bring them so I bought 2 more pairs, one for work, one for home. They were not that expensive. Maybe $60 each. Because they are infrared you can use as many headphones as you want with one transmitter so at some point I bought one more pair with no transmitter for home so me and a friend could watch late night action movies with loud sound without waking up the neighbors.

Eventually I got the 2 pair from the states back giving me a total of 5 pairs of cordless headphones!!!

Well, last week I just bought pair #6! The reason is as much as I liked the headphones, they were all the kind that go over your head. Meaning, if you have the kind any kind of hair style that requires you keep things off your head you are kind of out of luck. I tried just wrapping them around the back anyway but they are not designed for that and slide off all the time.

So, looking for a solution I found out here in Japan Sony has the MDR-IF50K. They work the same as all the others, infrared, but this time the receiver is a little separate base with a headphone socket so you can plug any headphones into it. It's not quite as convenient since you have to find a place to clip the receiver but now I can use any headphones including the kind you stick in your ears, the clipon kind, or the kind that wrap around the back of your head, in any case, not messing up my hair 😛

I should tell you, as far as I can tell, infrared cordless headphones are not super high fidelity. It's not a problem for me. I find them good enough but if you are more picky you might not. The new setup I just got means I can use any headphones but I suspect the issue is more of the infrared transmission, not the headphones. The other issue with them is you can only have one transmitter in an area. That means for example you can't have them and also the person sitting behind you at the office. The two transmitters will conflict. So far I've been lucky. As much as co−workers have liked them they haven't ever gone out and gotten their own. If they do I'll have to look for a new solution, at least for work. 😛

Japanese can't dance