Outdoor Tech Chips
To some, hitting a day of fresh powder doesn't feel the same without a soundtrack. The best new set of helmet-ready headphones we've found are Outdoor Tech's Chips. Once fit into the liner of our helmet, the cylindrical Bluetooth earpieces pair with your phone to provide you with crisp, clean wireless music. Control content and answer calls by tapping a panel on the back of the earpieces (volume controls on the left; track and call controls are on the right). They work down to about 4 degrees and last for about nine to 12 hours (or 280 hours on standby). The Chips are comfortable and much more stable than standard earbuds, which pop up after the first sign of moguls. In terms of sound, the Chips offer a surprisingly solid mountain listening experience. Everything from a bass-heavy Broken Bells track to a thrashing Queens of the Stone Age track were clear, though not up to an audiophile's standard – you are listening on a mountain after all. [outdoortechnology.com; $130]
Days tested: 5
Area tested: Stowe Mountain and Catamount Ski Area
Nitpick: The price. You can buy a few pairs of cheap ear buds for $130.