To go along with our list of the top 10 best waterproof headphones we, of course, have to do a list of the best waterproof MP3 players. After all, you won't get much mileage when swimming if your headphones are waterproof but your music player is not.
As I mentioned in the previous article, using waterproof headphones has absolutely transformed the way I swim. In training for an Ironman, I saw time in the pool as a couple of house of boredom that had to be tolerated. A means to an end. Now, I actually enjoy getting in the pool and have found that I mostly pass the time listening to audio-books and podcasts while I bust out the laps. Over the past few years, I have had a lot of waterproof MP3 players sent to me, some were great and some have been terrible. Here's my pick of the best.
So if you go and look at our list of the best waterproof headphones you will notice there are a few all in one solutions (similar to this style from Pyle) where the mp3 player is built into the earphones. In this list, I just want to cover the external MP3 players only, ones that are separate from the headphones and can be used independently. This style is my favorite and the most versatile as it can be used in and out the pool. They are not just great for swimming, they are also perfect for running in the rain, hiking, kayaking etc. Basically, any of these music players are perfect for use where water is involved.
Why not just use your phone for swimming?
This has been asked a lot lately and it is definetley due to more and more phones coming with some sort of waterproof rating like IPX68 etc. Whilst that is a very good thing for consumers it does not mean that your phone is designed to be used under water. Think of it more of a protection for short submersion. I know most of you reading are serious about your swimming but you would be surprised how many times I have had someone contact me for recommendations for a dedicated waterproof MP3 player because their phone broke from swimming with it.
A quick tip for maintenance of your MP3 Player!
All the models I listed below are pretty robust and will take care of themselves but there is one thing you should do that I cant stress highly enough. When you finish swimming take your MP3 player and rinse it thoroughly with clean fresh water. This is especially important if you do a lot of open water swimming in the sea or in chlorine filtered pools. Over time salt from the sea or chlorine from the pool can cause all sorts of problems. A quick rinse after every swim will add years to your devices life.
1. Waterproof Ipod Shuffle (Audioflood / Underwater Audio / Waterfi)
There are now a few companies that will make and sell you a waterproof iPod Shuffle. Our pick of the bunch is Audioflood but we have great things about the service from UnderwaterAudio and Weterfi as well).What these companies do is essentially take the iPod shuffle we all know and love and coat it so that the internals are protected when you take it swimming. Yes, it costs a lot more than a standard Shuffle but we think its combination of size and functionality are really hard to beat.
Click here to buy on Amazon (6 Colour Options)
2. Syryn 8GB Waterproof MP3 Player
The Syryn is one of the most popular waterproof MP3 players on the market. Unlike the Ipod it has been designed from the ground up to be used in a pool or open water.
Its controls sit horizontal meaning it clips easily to your goggles and the buttons are all big and rubberized meaning you can play, pause and skip tracks without too much fumbling around.
Look out for deals as well because you can also find the SYRYN bundled together with the excellent Swimbuds earphones. Of course the goggles wont be of use to any real swimmers but for the headphones and player combined it makes and excellent deal that costs just a fraction of the ipod Shuffle.
3. AGPtek S05
Another IPX8 player on the list is the S05 this one is designed as a general purpose sports MP3 and is more than capable of being submerged up to 3 meters for extended periods of time.
This one doesn't have a clip so you will have to thread you goggle strap through openings but this also means it can be attached to the included armband if you want to take it running.
Another bonus of the AGPtek is that it has some of the longest battery life we tested at around 16-17 hours. I know you won't be swimming for that long but its nice not to constantly have to charge yet another device every couple of days.
4. There is no 4... Only 3? Yes, and here is why!
Ohhh you expected us to make an uber long article listing every single waterproof MP3 player on the market? Not a chance. I'll let you into a secret. Most of the tech sites that do lists like this will never have even seen or touched these players let alone be swimmers themselves. It's purely about getting ad revenue. While our site does make a small amount from affiliate links I am not going to spam you with products that don't work. I run this site as a hobby and not as my job and it isn't why I have a website.
I have been training in the pool and open water for years and have had plenty of experience actually using these devices listed above. I will admit that as actual day to day MP3 players they all suck, your phone will easily surpass them in performance. However, for sports and especially for swimmers these are the best 3 music players I have found by some margin. I get sent a lot and they are mainly junk that works for a while and then has either died on me or formed some issue with the sound connection and cutouts.
Trust me when I say there are far more bad devices than good on the market right now. So that's it, stick with these 3 players and you should be good. Of course, I will keep checking out new models as they become available and will add them to the list if I think genuinely offer something positive. For now, these are the best you can buy so save yourself time / hassle and either go with one of them or choose one of the integrated models from our waterpfoof headphone list. Now go get the laps int, its time to train!