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Oakley Thump MP3 Sunglasses Review

Jan 1 2010, 12:00am CST | by

Oakley Thump MP3 Sunglasses Review
 
 

published: 04/06/05 last updated: 04/06/05

Oakley sent us their innovative MP3 Sunglasses Thump for review. We reported about them the first time in September 2004. Oakley managed to rather seamlessly integrate a MP3 player into a pair of sunglasses. This sure was more impressive before Apple released the lightweight iPod shuffle music player. We reported about the fun "iPod shuffle sunglasses". Still the Oakley Thump is a sexy gadget and we also wasted no time and energy and had I4U Gadget Model Christine pose for a photo shoot with the Thump. See the photos.

The 128MB Oakley Thump sells at Circuit City for $399.99.
The 256MB Oakley Thump sells at
Circuit City for $499.99.
Oakley Thumps are traded on eBay at lower prices.

Oakley Thump MP3 Sunglasses review sunglass mp3 player test
Oakley Thump Photo Gallery

Overview
I was supposed to receive those earlier this year for review, but there where some shipping issues. On the other hand back then was winter and sunglasses were not that necessary. I received the 256MB Night Camo / Black Iridium Polarized model. I am not a camouflage guy and also just wear Oakley glasses for mountain biking. So I was not falling in love with the looks of the glasses. They surprisingly look good on our Gadget Model Christine. I have to say this right now: never ever wear it with the lenses flipped open. It is dorky to say the least. That is why you will not see a photo of Christine wearing it flipped open. Convenient yes, but dorky!

Oakley Thump MP3 Sunglasses review sunglass mp3 player test

never ever wear it with the lenses flipped open - it is dorky!


The technical design of the Oakley Thump is actually very nice. The glasses are extremely light with a weight of 52g. The iPod shuffle weighs 22g and that without polarized sunglasses. The MP3 Player components are well integrated into the temples. The casing is held together by little screws. The integrated headphones are adjustable in three dimensions. For people with a small head they might still not fit.

Oakley Thump MP3 Sunglasses review sunglass mp3 player test

The Thump earphone can be moved forward and backward, inside and outside and turned up and down.



To charge the Thump glasses I connect it to the USB port. On one temple a USB mini plug is present under a plastic door. A 3 hour charge gives a 6 hour play-time. Obviously 6 hours is not that great, the iPod shuffle can do 12 hours. Connected via USB the mp3 player sunglasses registers as a USB mass storage device and I can copy MP3 and WMA audio files to the glasses.
As with the iPod shuffle the Thump mp3 player has no display. The glasses have one indicator LED and use audio cues to indicate on/off state change or low battery indication. The audio cue is not a little beep its actually sounds like a Thump or heartbeat - nice touch.

To operate the music player buttons on each temple are available. On the right temple are the play/stop/on/off button, next button and previous button. On the left temple are the two volume control buttons. Although the operation is pretty intuitive the embossed icons on the inside of the temples are only readable in ideal light conditions. Coloring the icons would make them much easier to see.
The sound is really good even with not having the ear-buds entirely inside the ear. They float a bit in front of the ear tunnel. There are no equalizer settings or other sound options, but I found there is no need to change anything. The maximum volume level is decent, but not super loud.

Oakley Thump MP3 Sunglasses review sunglass mp3 player test

More Oakley Thump Photos and close-ups in this Photo Gallery.

Conclusion
Oakley offers with the Thump an innovative and well-designed wearable gadget. Oakley sunglasses are already a matter of taste. The Motorola Oakley Razrwire Bluetooth headset sunglasses feature already a more elegant design. Maybe Oakley will also introduce a metal frame version of the Thump in the future. The MP3 player is nicely integrated and the weight of the glasses is still low enough for comfortable wearing them. The sound is great, the price is not. 500 dollars for a 256MB mp3 player is hard to stomach, even for hard-core early adopters. The Thump sunglasses are out now since a couple of month, maybe it is time for Oakley to reduce the price. Oakley Thumps are traded on eBay at lower prices.


How to Buy
The Oakley Thump and Thump accessories sell at Circuit City. See links below.
The 256MB Thump sells for $499.99. The 128MB version sells for $399.99.
See also Thump listings on
eBay.

Oakley Thump 256MB Sunglasses (05150C)
Oakley Thump 256MB Sunglasses (05150C)
Oakley Thump 128MB Sunglasses (05151C)
Oakley Thump 128MB Sunglasses (05151C)
Oakley Thump 256MB Sunglasses (05152C)
Oakley Thump 256MB Sunglasses (05152C)
Oakley Thump 128MB Sunglasses (05153C)
Oakley Thump 128MB Sunglasses (05153C)
Oakley Thump 256MB Sunglasses (05154C)
Oakley Thump 256MB Sunglasses (05154C)
Oakley Thump 128MB Sunglasses (05155C)
Oakley Thump 128MB Sunglasses (05155C)
Oakley Thump Soft Vault (07-858)
Oakley Thump Soft Vault (07-858)
Oakley Thump Soft Box (07-859)
Oakley Thump Soft Box (07-859)
Oakley Thump Wall Charger (07-860)
Oakley Thump Wall Charger (07-860)
Oakley Thump Car Charger (07-862)
Oakley Thump Car Charger (07-862)

More Photos
Hi-Res Photos in the Oakley Thump Photo Gallery.

Oakley Thump MP3 Sunglasses review sunglass mp3 player test

Oakley Thump Box: Contents: Thump glasses, USB cable, Software CD and manual.


Oakley Thump MP3 Sunglasses review sunglass mp3 player test

USB mini plug.

Oakley Thump MP3 Sunglasses review sunglass mp3 player test

button Icons hard to read on the inside of the temples.


Oakley Thump MP3 Sunglasses review sunglass mp3 player test

rubber buttons on the top of the temples.


Specification Oakley Thump

Lens

Clarity

High Definition Optics® (HDO®); patented Oakley XYZ Optics®
(virtually distortion-free vision at all angles of view)

UV blocking

Oakley Plutonite® lens material
(blocks 100% of all UVA, UVB, UVC and harmful blue light)

Strength

Impact resistance exceeds ANSI Z87.1-2003 requirements

Storage

128 MB NAND flash memory or 256 MB NAND flash memory

Audio

CPU

75 MHz DSP with 18-bit sigma Delta DAC

SN ratio

-85.058 dB

Filtering

Dual automatic EQ; static and noise correction

Earphones

Type

Mylar speakers with fore-aft booming and rotational positioning

Range

20 Hz ~ 20,000 Hz

Input / Output

16 Ohm / 20 mW

Distortion

0.91183%

SPL

NA

Battery

Type

Rechargeable lithium-ion polymer, charged via USB connection or optional external charger

Full charge

Up to 6 hours playback time (3-hour charge)

Quick charge

Up to 4 hours playback time (1-hour charge)

Computer Interface

USB 2.0, backward compatible with USB 1.1

Connection Protocol

USB mass storage class specification

Controls

Right ear stem

Front: fast forward/cue;
Middle: play/pause/power;
Rear: rewind/review

Left ear stem

Front: volume up;
Rear: volume down

Audio Support

MP3, WMA, WMA with DRM, WAV

Operational Modes

Sequential playback (in the order songs were loaded) or random play; Power Save (turns off after 3 minutes of inactivity)

Status Indicators

LED (1)

Supported OS

Windows XP, 2000, ME or 98SE (98SE requires additional driver);
Mac OS 9.2.2, OS X 10.1.5, OS X 10.2 or OS X 10.3

Operating Climate

-4°F ~ 140°F (-20°C ~ 60°C)

Storage

Short term

-4°F ~ 140°F (-20°C ~ 60°C)

Long term

-32°F ~ 113°F (0°C ~ 45°C)

Weight

52 g (less than 1.8 oz)

Size

6.8" x 6.2" x 2.1" (172 x 55 x 160 mm)

Frame Material

Durable, lightweight Oakley O Matter®

Included

Operation Manual, Quick Start Guide, USB Cable

Optional Accessories

World Wall Charger with international adapters (07-860), Car Charger (07-862), OAKLEY THUMP Soft Vault for storage (07-858), OAKLEY THUMP Soft Box for storage (07-859), replacement/additional USB cable (07-861)


See also the Oakley Thump site.

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<a href="/latest_stories/all/all/2" rel="author">Luigi Lugmayr</a>
Luigi Lugmayr (Google) is the founding chief Editor of I4U News and brings over 15 years experience in the technology field to the ever evolving and exciting world of gadgets. He started I4U News back in 2000 and evolved it into vibrant technology magazine.
Luigi can be contacted directly at ml@i4u.com.

 

 

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