At the gym the other night, I counted the number of people using headsets. About two-thirds of exercisers were using some form of iPod or other portable media player, and, of course, earbuds, headsets, headphones, or stereo back 'phones. The delivery of sound to the ears of the sports-inclined is a huge business, and the proliferation of so many different types of devices to deliver sound directly to the ear canals indicates that the purchase of a headset is a very personal transaction.
I've tried a baker's dozen of wired headsets in the past four years -- and, now that I've discovered Bluetooth, at least a half-dozen models from them. I'm not alone in my inability to wear earbuds. I have to have a headphone or headset that's connected to a frame -- for me, a headband that goes behind rather than over the top of the head. In this article, I don't discuss headphones for home use, where an over-the-head band might be acceptable. Though some people do wear them for sports and exercise, they're not for me, being too hot and too much in the way.
I've concluded that, for the gym, wireless Bluetooth is the only way -- that way, I can concentrate on my biceps curls or treadmill time without getting tangled up in wires. I believe that, once you've experienced the freedom of wireless Bluetooth headphones for exercise and running, you'll be hard-pressed to go back to wired units. That said, even Bluetooth is not quite ready for prime time. This Sony pairing of headphones and transmitter, then, came as a relatively good way to enter the realm of Bluetooth without spending too much, while eagerly awaiting a set of headphones, from Sony or elsewhere, that will eliminate some of the current problems with Bluetooth.