The Duo is the newest underwater mp3 player from Finis. It works through bone conduction, so you don’t actually plug it into your ears but instead it resonates sound through your cheekbones. Sounds futuristic but it works really well – and as a plus there are fewer wires to get tangled up in than there are with traditional in-ear mp3 players.
The Duo is charged and loaded with songs via an USB magnetic docking station that you plug into your computer. The device is compatible with iTunes and songs are loaded simply by dragging files across to the Duo. The device supports unprotected mp3 and WMA files, but that does mean that you might have to convert your music to mp3 if it is stored as a different format. This was quite easily done in iTunes, and you can then organise your Duo music into playlists. The Duo can store up to 1000 songs or 60 hours of playback, and the battery lasts for up to seven hours between charges.
The Duo clips on to either side of your goggles with the wire between each piece going behind your head. The controls are minimal and simple to use as you can’t actually see them while operating them, but we found that once the device was on there wasn’t really any need to fiddle with the controls. There is no display so you simply listen to the songs you have stored, although you can skip forwards and backwards.
Sound quality was good, considering you are underwater and swimming. This is a gadget for training with in the pool though – don’t take it into the open water. Firstly, you won’t be able to hear the sounds of nature; secondly, you won’t be able to hear the engine of the boat that is about to mow you down.