These sporty headphones offer a perfected fit for under $30

There’s a bare minimum requirement that’s often overlooked on sport headphones until they’re out of the package: a comfortable and secure fit. The Hoop in-ear headphones by Coloud offer a semi-custom fit, plus some bonus design features aimed at athletes, and manage to keep the price under $30.

The Hoop’s earbuds are designed so the cord forms a loop along the top of the bud. Once you tuck the earbud in, the loop holds it in place against the interior of your ear. All you have to do is pull the cord to adjust the size of the loop. It’s a surprisingly simple way to get a custom fit.

Active listeners — you know, people who don’t turn into statues once they put their headphones on — appreciate it when the slightest jostle doesn’t dislodge the buds. The Hoops do come with an extra pair of rubber covers, but they’re more for cosmetic purposes, rather than for sizing. The only time you ever end up replacing those things on regular earbuds is because one fell off and you don’t want cold, hard, unyielding plastic in your ear. The Hoop’s soft covering stays secure, since the loop keeps the buds in place.

That’s not the only feature designed to make athletes’ lives a little easier. A reflective stripe runs the full length of the cord, which is great for extra visibility during night runs or rides. If you’re not the super-active type, a little reflectivity makes these easier to find at the bottom of a drawer or bag, or in the backseat of a darkened cab. The cording itself is flat, to prevent crimping and coiling, and tougher than most. The Hoop has resisted getting caught in a bike wheel, and survived a few accidental and unfortunate tugs when they snagged on door handles.

Of course, the Hoop headphones wouldn’t be worth it if the sound was sub-par, but the specs speak for themselves. A 40mm dynamic driver, with 100mV@1khz=101cB SPL sensitivity, 32ohm impedance in the common 20Hz-20kHz frequency range — it all translates to balanced sound for the price. Don’t expect booming base, but it is smooth and the highs don’t scream.

The controls worked well — no spastic tapping required. One tap pauses music, answers, or hangs up incoming calls; two taps skip to the next track in music apps or rejects the call; three taps rewinds one track. The Hoops work with those familiar patterns, including the long press to open the voice command system. If you want something more complex, you can try an app to program your headset, like JAYS headset control.

If you’re not an obsessive audiophile ready to drop a ton of cash on a set of headphones, Coloud’s Hoop earbuds are a great option for their unique fitting system, reflective stripe, and rugged design.


Walmart drops prices on Apple Watches and other fitness trackers

Smartwatches, fitness trackers, and wearable heart rate monitors from Apple, Samsung, Fitbit, and Garmin are popular gifts. Wearables are smarter and more capable than in earlier years. We found the best wearables deals on Walmart.

Our favorite fitness trackers make it fun to keep moving

Looking for your first fitness tracker, or an upgrade to the one you're already wearing? There are plenty of the wrist-worn gadgets available. Here are our picks for the best fitness trackers available right now.

This one-day Skullcandy sale gets you wireless earbuds for under $30

Today only, you can save 40 percent on wireless earbuds, noise-canceling headphones, and classic earbuds direct from the Skullcandy website. If you're hoping to get a pair of headphones before the holidays arrive, now is the time.

Crush your next workout with the best Fitbit for every activity

Fitbits are amazingly helpful tools for setting fitness goals and tracking progress. However, different activities require different metrics. We've gathered a list of the best Fitbits for running, swimming, biking, and other activities.

Built to take a beating and still perform, these are the best hiking watches

A proper hiking watch should track exercise metrics and act as a navigational co-pilot during any kind of hike. Ideally, it'll even have a built-in GPS system and sensors. Here are five of the best hiking watches.

These fitness deals come just in time to work off those holiday calories

Finding the motivation to work out is one thing. Finding space at home to get in a few sets and reps can be an entire challenge in itself. Luckily for you, Walmart and Amazon both have space saving fitness machines and tools on sale right…
Emerging Tech

Transplanted pig hearts show promise in baboon trials. Are humans next?

Researchers in Germany have successfully transplanted modified pig hearts into baboons. The results take us one step closer to ending organ transplant waiting lists for good. Here's why.

Google Fit app finally gets a widget, among other new features

Google Fit hasn't received any new features since its redesign. This week, the company is rolling some new tools; users will be able to add a widget to their Android home screen, adjust the intensity of their workouts, and more.

Amazon is slashing its prices on an array of top blenders

Quality blenders from Vitamix to Ninja and more are on sale at Amazon — just in time to gift them for Christmas. They're great for preparing tasty treats, and as a kitchen staple, they make a great gift for the budding chef in your life.

Best Products of 2018

Our reception desk has so many brown boxes stacked up, it looks like a loading dock. We’re on a first-name basis with the UPS guy. We get new dishwashers more frequently than most people get new shoes. What we’re trying to say is: We…

REI clearance sale extends discounts on Garmin, Fitbit, and GoPro devices

Beyond the things you typically expect to find at REI — like tents, skis, and jackets — there are tons of great deals on quality tech foryour outdoor adventures. From smartwatches to action cameras, here are the best tech deals.
Smart Home

Alexa’s latest skill helps patients manage high blood pressure

People who need some help managing their high blood pressure are getting some help via a new Alexa skill developed in partnership with Omron Healthcare that will work directly with the manufacturer's monitors.

How to use the ECG app, set up irregular rhythm notifications on the Apple Watch

The Apple Watch Series 4 is the best smartwatch iPhone owners can own, and it just got even better with the addition of the ECG app and ability to identify irregular heart rhythms. Here's how to set it all up.
Emerging Tech

There’s a new lab-grown meat startup on the block — and it has a secret weapon

Aleph Farms is developing lab-grown steaks with the same flavor, shape, texture, and structure as the real thing using beef cells isolated from living cows. Coming soon to a store near you?