Bone conduction headphones are an incredible feat of technology, but as great as their benefits might be, volume isn’t one of them. Many users, feeling their Shokz are not loud enough, report that the output volume is considerably lower than regular earphones at the same volume level. So, how can you make your Shokz bone conduction headphones louder?
You can make your Shokz louder by increasing the volume on the headset. If that doesn’t suffice, you can adjust some equalizer settings to get better results. The position of the headphones will also make a difference. You can also use earplugs to make the sound louder and crisper.
It can be frustrating not to be able to find that sweet spot where the volume is just right, and bone conduction headphones are sadly notorious for this. But there are also risks involved in increasing the volume. Let’s look at why you may need to increase the volume, how to do so, and some risks you should be aware of.
Is It Possible To Make Shokz Louder?
Shokz bone conduction headphones aren’t as loud as regular headphones. It’s a natural side-effect of how they work. Even though Shokz has made incredible leaps in improving the volume (it’s already unbelievable that they are as loud and clear as they are), they are nowhere near the volume of air conduction headphones.
There are two reasons for this:
- Bone conduction headphones have more obstructions in the way of the sound. Though bones are good at conducting sound vibrations, skin and flesh are not (try blocking a standard earphone’s speaker with your hand; the sound will be severely muffled if you block it off entirely).
- The fact that your ears are open with bone conduction headphones means you don’t have a seal around your inner ears to keep the sound focused.
If you can find a way to change those two factors, you can effectively make your Shokz sound louder.
How To Make Shokz Louder
There are a few things you can try to make your Shokz louder. Some of them are built-in features, but if they don’t work, you can try a few other techniques.
The Volume Controls
This might seem obvious, but we can’t discuss making Shokz louder without mentioning the simplest things.
You Shokz have built-in volume controls, and you can also adjust the volume on the device that you connected them to. Try to increase the volume a bit to see how much of a difference that makes.
However, you should note that their volume might already be much higher than you think. The fact that your ears are unblocked makes them sound much softer than they are. So, don’t keep your Shokz at high volume levels for too long, as that could damage your cochlea (inner ear).
Shokz comes with either two or three built-in equalizer settings, depending on the model. Most models only have two sets, called Standard mode and Earplug mode. The OpenMove also includes a third option called Vocal Booster mode.
Standard mode is intended for general use to listen to music while your ears are uncovered, allowing optimal environmental awareness. The volume is relatively low and toned down to not interfere with what’s happening around you.
Earplug mode is for more dedicated listening. When you’re wearing earplugs, you can hear the sound more clearly (more on that in a moment), and Shokz assumes that you would not do that if you need environmental awareness, so this setting allows more volume and clearer audio.
Vocal Booster mode amplifies the human voice, making it ideal for listening to podcasts.
You can select different settings by pressing both volume buttons simultaneously and holding them for around three seconds. Audrey, the voice assistant, will announce which mode you’ve switched to.
If these aren’t sufficient, you can try to adjust the sound settings on the device you’re listening on. Some of them have more fine-tuned equalizers that you can adjust to suit your needs.
Try Resetting Your Shokz
If your Shokz suddenly lost volume without you making any changes, a hard reset may resolve this. Even though it’s intended to solve connectivity problems, many users have succeeded with this method.
To reset your Shokz, follow these steps:
- Turn off your Shokz.
- Put your Shokz into pairing mode by pressing and holding the Volume+ button for approximately seven seconds until the LED flashes red and blue.
- Now press and hold all three buttons (the multifunction button, Volume+, and Volume-) simultaneously. Hold them for approximately five seconds until you hear beeps or feel vibrations.
- Now turn the headphones off. They are now reset.
Note that you must pair them again, as all pairing information will be deleted during the reset process.
Adjust Their Position
Sometimes the reduced volume is caused by too much obstruction between the headphones and your skull. This means you can potentially increase the perceived volume of bone conduction headphones by adjusting their position on your head.
Try to find a way to get as little skin and flesh between the transducers and your skull. There are areas around your ears where the skin is relatively thin. If you can position them there and perhaps tighten the Shokz to press into your skull more firmly, it’s possible that the sound you hear will be louder since there’s less for the vibrations to pass through.
If you want to listen to music and hear it more clearly on your Shokz, a very efficient way to do so is to plug your ears. You will already hear a difference if you cup your hands over your ears or stick your fingers into your ear canals.
Some models of bone conduction headphones come with earplugs included. If yours didn’t, you could use almost any earplugs, but there are some that are rated for better noise filtering. Those are the ones you want. Look for some plugs that can fit comfortably in your ears.
Also, note that this negates the primary purpose of bone conduction headphones, which is environmental awareness. So it’s crucial that you only do this in situations where you don’t need to constantly hear your environment, like when you’re listening to music while relaxing at home.
Modern Shokz is much louder than it used to be. Considering how many generations of bone conduction headphones we’ve already gone through, the technology is still improving in leaps and bounds. But they are still not as loud as standard headphones, and it’s possible they never will. But if you want some more volume from your Shokz, you now know what to do.