No, not this bass:
Bass as in…
A fish wearable would have a thin marketplace. The Sashimiwatch! Worst wearable ever.
When it comes to sound, the most common complaint is the absence of bass. If users are wearing those headphones for the gym, they want to feel the lows.
The solution may not be in the ears. If the sounds are coming to us the same ways as everything else (like miss and highs) through 2-dimensional surfaces, then we may never get it right.
Sound in the wild is three dimensional. We experience it, not only through our ear canals but through our skeletons. If you doubt it, Google the phrase “bone conducting headphones.”
Music heard in a nightclub is closer to the way sound is in the wild. We can feel the depth of the sound. The lows don’t just shake our eardrums, they shake out spines.
That’s what bass-heads want from their workout mix. Well, now we have two wearable solutions that might do the trick. Besides the fact that they both bring the bass without using your ear canals, they are very different from each other.
The Subpac is to the body, what subwoofers were for vehicles, but more portable.
Introduced in 2013, Subpac works via two slightly different versions. One version sits on the backrest of a chair like you may use in gaming or sound mixing. The other straps to your back. Both direct bass to your spine, not your ears, much the way you would experience it in a club or a concert.
If you’ve even had the pleasure to ride in a vehicle with a subwoofer behind or under the seat, you know what it’s like to feel the music.
With Subpac, you can take that party anywhere so long as you’re comfortable wearing a backpack about the size of a Camelback. Perhaps the two companies could work together on a single solution.
The wearable version of Subpac, the M2, is $329 as of this writing. The seat back version, the S2, is $279.
While these prices definitely tack on some precious dollars to your listening experience, it may be worth it.
Would you wear Subpac to the gym?
The Basslet is to the body what running cold water on your wrists is to a hot summer’s day.
It may, however, be so much more. Where the Subpac really brings that club/concert/car experience to your spine, the Basslet brings it your wrist. Reportedly, this is surprisingly significant.
About the size of the Apple Watch, the Basslet fits on your wrist. It works with any headphones system, pulling the lows from the music, allowing you to feel the bass.
Despite the fact that it only sits on your wrist, the effect seems to happen in your whole body, just like that ice cold water on your wrists in summertime cools your whole body.
The bad news? The Basslet is only on Kickstarter, but there’s good news in that. As of this writing, they’ve surpassed their goals by more than three times.
For just over $100, Basslet can me on your wrist by 2017, with shipments going out by December. That means by the time New Year’s resolutions come around, you’ll already be at the gym rocking your new bass machine.
As the promotion video for Basslet says, bass is the way we connect to music. This is as true of EDM and Hip Hop as it is of Baroque and New Orleans Jazz.
In the gym, bass is what make ua run faster, hit harder, lift more. What’s more, introducing bass to our bodies through the body saves our ears.
Perhaps in the future, we will only experience bass in this way.