Traditional over the ear headphones aren't always ideal when you're engaged in physical activities, but Outdoor Tech, the company the Turtle Shell and Big Turtle Shell speakers, thinks it has the solution in the shape of the CHIPS "All-In-One" headphone system.
Essentially a pair of over ear cups joined by a flexible cord rather than a rigid band as in conventional designs, CHIPS were originally conceived for skiers and snowboarders, the idea being born out of the frustration felt when trying to take calls and control music playback while on top of a mountain. They are therefore designed to fit into virtually all ski helmets, but their potential uses have been expanded to activities such as running, cycling, climbing, and skateboarding with the development of a number of new accessories that integrate the headphones. These include a headband, a pair of beanies, a pouch, and an exoskeleton (a frame that the CHIPS slot in, turning them into a more traditional pair of headphones).
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The CHIPS feature 40-mm drivers, water resistance, and the ability to work in freezing conditions. Both wired and Bluetooth wireless versions are available. A patented two-button system allows you to control music playback and handle incoming calls all without taking off your gloves. The rechargeable lithium ion battery provides 9-10 hours of playback time according to the creators and a built-in microphone means you can also take calls without fishing your phone out of your pocket.
Outdoor Tech is launching the redesigned CHIPS on Kickstarter. The wired model with all accessories requires a pledge of US$90 or more, with the wireless model with all accessories starting at $145. At the time of writing, the project has exceeded its $30,00 funding goal by more than $50K. Outdoor Tech says its on schedule to deliver the package by March 2015.
The company's Kickstarter pitch is below.