Shower Earbuds (How & Why the IPx Rating Matters)




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Who doesn’t enjoy singing in the shower? When we think of singing in the shower, I’m sure it comes to mind that earbuds would be an excellent choice to perform our water concerts. But can I take a shower with IPX7 earbuds?.

Yes, only if you verify that the earbuds are IPX7 or higher within the IPX rating. In that case, you can submerge the equipment in water up to one meter deep for up to 30 minutes, and of course, you can shower with them without exceeding the indicated time.

Today, many earbuds promote waterproof features, but this is not an authentic guarantee.

The only thing that will indicate if you can submerge the earbuds in water is the international IPX rating, but don’t worry if you don’t know what this means.

In this article, you will discover with us everything you need to know about it.

What Does It Mean For Earbuds To Be Waterproof And Water-resistant?

We must understand that any waterproof and water-resistant equipment does not mean that they are entirely immune to water.

The correct interpretation is that it will withstand the onslaught of this element to a certain level. No earbuds are 100% waterproof; no matter what headphone it is, they all have to try to get sound out of the holes.

The waterproof capability makes the earbuds able to withstand certain water-related conditions.

Still, it is likely that in situations where water is flowing heavily, damage to the equipment will occur.

Features Of Water-resistant Earbuds

  • The sound quality is superior. This type of earbuds has excellent sound quality, as it is the only way to counteract the sound of flowing water.
  • They are durable. All waterproof earbuds are durable enough to withstand the heavy use that this type of equipment must endure. It is possible for earbuds to slip and fall on the floor, as well as continually hit the water. Hence, the strength and material quality of the equipment are essential.
  • They must be comfortable and offer a good fit. This attribute applies not only for use in the shower but for any use in general. When the earbuds have a bad fit in a humid environment, they will feel uncomfortable very quickly.
  • It must be waterproof. This is the key to using earbuds in the shower, their ability to resist water. According to your intent to use it, you may need it to have a certain resistance level according to the IPX rating.

Understanding The IPX System

IP stands for Ingress Protection. The IPX is an international standardized measure to indicate the protection of a device against dust, liquids, and other foreign elements.

The X that forms the rating code precedes the number that indicates the degree of protection of the equipment.

Surely you´ve seen a smartphone, smartwatch, or any other electronic device such as headphones or earbuds that have this rating.

To achieve this critical attribute, manufacturers must apply various coatings and rubber seals along the joints of all parts.

IPX ratings have different levels that will serve more or less depending on the environment and the equipment’s intended use.

There are levels of this rating that can offer moderate water resistance. At the same time, other levels can go up to almost 100% protection, even for a short time.

The IPX Rating Classification

Before jumping into the shower with your earbuds, it makes sense first to learn the IPX rating to understand if your equipment can withstand this experience.

  • IPX0. This rating means that the equipment to be used has no protection against dust or liquids. If your earbuds have this rating, you should not put them in the shower for any reason.
  • IPX1. This level means that the earbuds have low protection against dust and liquids. They are equipment that cannot withstand heavy rain, much less the shower spray or water drops hitting you at a 90-degree angle. With this resistance level, you can run outdoors, and the equipment can withstand a few drops of sweat or very light rain.
  • IPX2. This level provides a little more protection against water drops. It may be able to withstand water droplets hitting at an angle of 15 degrees for up to 10 minutes. This rating is suitable for light outdoor work where the earbuds could face rain or sweat.
  • IPX3. This level protects raindrops hitting at an angle of 60 degrees. This level of protection is insufficient to put the earbuds in the shower. You can use it for a little more than 10 minutes in the rain.
  • IPX4. This classification is the first level of water resistance rating that can offer protection against liquids hitting in any direction, but only for a short time.
  • IPX5. This rating can protect your earbuds for 10 minutes of continuous water dripping from any direction. It’s still not a level that’s too rugged to take into the shower.
  • IPX6. IPX6 can withstand 3 minutes of powerful water jets. If you take a very short shower that does not exceed this time, you can use your earbuds.
  • IPX7: From this level, we can use the earbuds more safely in the shower. The IPX7 allows immersing the earbuds in water up to one meter deep for a maximum period of 30 minutes.
  • IPX8. This level allows continuous immersion of the device, but everything will depend on the specifications of each brand and manufacturer.
  • IPX9. This level is at the top of all classifications in terms of water resistance. This level gives us almost total resistance against water jets, hot water, and liquid penetration.

Taking A Shower With IPX7 Earbuds

The ideal rating that your earbuds should have for use in the shower is IPX7.

IPX8 and IPX9 will also serve this purpose; however, these levels of protection have much more specialized uses, so IPX7 is suitable if we want to listen to music and sing while we take a good shower that does not exceed 30 minutes.

You must look at the earbuds and instruction manual to confirm that this device is indeed IPX7 rated.

This confirmation will certify if it is a protected device against immersion up to one meter deep.

Be very wary of devices that say “waterproof.” This designation is not enough to take them into the water; you should always look for IPX7 certification.

Sometimes manufacturers take advantage of the “waterproof” feature and apply it to devices that are not IPX7 rated but are IPX4 rated.

You should know that devices with an IPX4 waterproof rating will not withstand a shower or heavy rain, so the best recommendation is to confirm the accurate IPX rating of the earbuds.

What Factors Should We Consider Before Using Earbuds In The Shower?

Some of the elements you should consider before using earbuds in the shower are:

  • You should check the IPX rating of the earbuds. As we have reviewed in-depth throughout this article, you should confirm that your equipment is at least rated IPX7 or higher.
  • The noise cancellation or isolation feature. Inside the shower, you will feel considerable noise due to the pressure of the water jet and its fall on the floor. It would be beneficial if your earbuds had a noise-canceling feature to help you enjoy the sound even more.
  • The fit of the earbuds. Having the perfect fit while the water is falling is fundamental to enjoy this experience. The goal is to have earbuds that do not drop or slip and a comfortable fit.
  • Connectivity. Most wireless earbuds use Bluetooth technology for music playback. If we do not have a good signal in the bathroom, the signal quality may be poor or non-existent.
  • Weather. This factor is perhaps one of the most important. Remember that IPX7 rated earbuds have a water protection time that should not exceed 30 minutes. While we are in the shower relaxing, the time could pass without realizing it; if this happens, we will damage the earbuds.

A Final Thought On Taking Showers With Ipx7 Earbuds

Using earbuds in the shower is entirely possible. Thanks to today’s technology, we can enjoy our favorite music even in the shower.

We just have to make sure that our equipment is IPX7 rated and does not exceed the maximum resistance time of 30 minutes.

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