Audio Chips, worth it?

GreenAthlete49

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Hi All,

Wondering who has used Audio Chips with ski helmets? Last year I used some Jabra Elite earbuds underneath but had a couple of issues:

1. Pressure from helmet ead pads helped keep them in but also began to get very uncomfortable.
2. Hard to control unless using phone itself to turn them off or pause music.

Has anyone tried these Audio chips and if so how has it been?

All the best
~GA
 

surfsnowgirl

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I have chips by outdoor tech in my ski helmet and I love them. On my 2nd pair. They are way better IMO than ear buds because you can still hear around you as they aren't directly in your ears. Sound quality is good too. I can control it by my smart watch so my phone never has to leave my jacket. You can also turn off and skip songs, etc by tapping the respective ear on your helmet pad.
 
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fatbob

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I found chips too much faff and instead found some decently comfortable bluetooth button earbuds (not the Apple/stem type). Only use one at a time at a moderate volume and simple gentle punch yourself in the ear with a gloved knuckle to pause.
 

Scrundy

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I hand used chips for many years. They are well worth it.
In agreement here, it’s nice that the wife can get ahold of me anytime. Tunes on the lift are a added bonus. They really help when skiing alone like I do mostly
 

Tony Storaro

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Hi All,

Wondering who has used Audio Chips with ski helmets? Last year I used some Jabra Elite earbuds underneath but had a couple of issues:

1. Pressure from helmet ead pads helped keep them in but also began to get very uncomfortable.
2. Hard to control unless using phone itself to turn them off or pause music.

Has anyone tried these Audio chips and if so how has it been?

All the best
~GA

They are not bad. Sound is not wow but not bad either. Some problems with connection dropping but all in all I had positive experience. Not using them anymore because they add weight to the helmet but mainly because I moved to incompatible helmets
 

Tony Storaro

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I have chips by outdoor tech in my ski helmet and I love them. On my 2nd pair. They are way better IMO than ear buds because you can still hear around you as they aren't directly in your ears. Sound quality is good too. I can control it by my smart watch so my phone never has to leave my jacket. You can also turn off and skip songs, etc by tapping the respective ear on your helmet pad.

you can set your Beats Fit Pro or Airpods to Transparency and still hear around you
 

silverback

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The chips don’t go into your ears so you can still hear but if you turn the music up it is all you’ll hear. I keep it low or off while skiing.
Last year I listened to a lot of live shows on the Relisten app. Soundboard recordings were fine but audience recordings had me constantly stopping or looking around thinking I heard someone whistle or scream.
 
Thread Starter
TS
G

GreenAthlete49

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Wow...a lot of positive experiences. I wasn't expecting such good feedback on the audio itself since it's away from the ear.

I'm planning to use them for music, answering calls and a really important purpose is the Carv coach feedback as I ski, calling out the numbers as I practice.

I'm not a bass 'guy' but I also want to hear the appropriate level of bass. Are they up to the task?
 
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mikes781

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I’ve been using the Chips 2.0 for a few years with Carv and they work fine for that. I wasn’t crazy over the audio quality when it comes to music with them but by design they aren’t going to sound as good as ear buds. Fine for how I use them. I tried using ear buds but felt like I needed to take them out on the lift to chat with whoever I was skiing with or not to be anti social if I was going solo. My AirPods have a transparency mode but that was more of a haste to turn on and off.

There’s a newer ChIps model that don’t have a wire connecting the two speakers. I’ve read some reviews saying that they turn off after 5 minutes of inactivity. Could be a little inconvenient if you are using the Carv in the free ride mode as it only gives feedback on the lift and they turn off on you. Something to look into before buying.
 

noobski

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I agree with everything written here. I use the Outdoor Tech chips and they seem the best balance of sound v. hearing around me. They are also super easy to control with your gloves on. Traditional headphones are my back up though because I haven't found it worth it to upgrade beyond my normal headphones.

I would only add two cons:

1. They don't seem to last for me. I ski about 25-40 days a year and by seasons end one of the two speakers seems to go out. I buy the wired-ones, though and that may be a big part of the problem. I also never take them out unless I have to adjust them and that may put unnecessary wear on them. But they're only $25-$40 depending on where you get them and I'm okay with the annual turnover cost.

2. Their comfort really depends on the helmet, no matter if the helmet maker says they can fit chips. I used to ski Sweet Protection helmets and those chips fit perfectly. I made the switch to Giro because SP changed their helmet shape. The Giro helmet fits great, but the chip sleeves totally suck compared to SP. By days end the ears hurt a bit to a lot.

All that said, I like this approach the best because of my goal to have/want wired headphones that aren't super expensive and I can hear around me.
 

Yo Momma

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Outdoor Chips 2.0 control w/ gloves. Tap to pause for chairlift, tap again to resume. Many years of use with minimal issues. I've tried in ear and will never go back bec you have to take your gloves/mittens off to control. Not worth the hassle. Just tap your ears for control. Super reliable over hundreds of days in VT. Walkie Talkie feature does not work at all. To stop and talk w/ buddies, tap your ear... gloves/mittens on. Also be sure to adjust sound to your liking w/ the software equalizer in your music app. This makes a huge difference in sound quality.

They generally last me all day. On powder days I plug'em into an outlet during lunch. Always less than 10 min to full recharge.
 

noobski

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Outdoor Chips 2.0 control w/ gloves. Tap to pause for chairlift, tap again to resume. Many years of use with minimal issues. I've tried in ear and will never go back bec you have to take your gloves/mittens off to control. Not worth the hassle. Just tap your ears for control. Super reliable over hundreds of days in VT. Walkie Talkie feature does not work at all. To stop and talk w/ buddies, tap your ear... gloves/mittens on. Also be sure to adjust sound to your liking w/ the software equalizer in your music app. This makes a huge difference in sound quality.

They generally last me all day. On powder days I plug'em into an outlet during lunch. Always less than 10 min to full recharge.
wireless I assume? I think my quality control problems with these chips are the wire itself and I'm tempted to make the switch.
 

silverback

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I have both kinds. I never use the wired version. I have hundreds of days on mine. You have to unzip the liner (smith helmet) and pull one chip to plug into the charger so that part of your helmet gets a little more wear and tear. I still get 200+ days out of my helmets.

I plug mine into the usb in the car and charge on the way to & from the mountain. They last all day but if I forget, they sometimes go dead part way through the second day.
 

Yo Momma

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wireless I assume? I think my quality control problems with these chips are the wire itself and I'm tempted to make the switch.
Yes Bluetooth. The Chips are wired between L & R but no wire to phone. The L to R wire easily fits into in the zipper of my Smith Vantage helmets. I had to play w/ the foam in the helmet earpieces to assure that the speakers were against my ears and the foam stayed towards the outside of the helmet. I also removed the inner most circle of foam that as it presses the chips overly tight against my ears.

My setup is repeatable w/ only a minor adjustment of foam first thing in the am. (1 min process) After that I never have to touch it unless I take them out to recharge them. You do not want the Chips on the outside of the insulation foam. This will drastically impede the sound quality. Be sure to press the Chips as far fwd as possible once they are comfortably seated. This will help to keep them centered over your ears. Practice at home makes this an easy 1 min process. :beercheer:
 

Andy Mink

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I have Outdoor Chips, total wireless. I keep them low on the lift for background music. Once skiing it's low enough that I can't hear it but I can hear what's going on around me. If it's a slow day on the slope I'll bump the volume up to hear the music while skiing. Busy days, either off or super low.

I know I should be able to call with a tap but I've yet to figure out how to link to my phone for that. I have answered the phone though.
 

noobski

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Convinced based on the above three reviews...moving to wireless. I literally replace one a year and at this point given the longevity of the wireless, I could have saved by now.
 
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