When was the last time you bought something techie for your kids and found it was just a toy? Or you bought something that was in reality a product you would use, except for the teen heartthrob painted on it?

When I first heard about Kidz Gear™ headphones for kids – I was both curious and sceptical. Several questions came to mind immediately…

1. How safe are headphones for developing ears?

2. How safe are kids walking around with headphones on?

3. How often will I have to replace these headphones when the kids break them?

I spent an hour with Kidz Gear™ yesterday, and came away a true believer. First and foremost, the product was designed by parents – who have similar concerns to the ones I raised above. They are designed to solve the never ending battle between a child’s desire for his or her parent’s things and the parent’s fear of them destroying an expensive item.

Kidz Gear™ headphones feature KidzControl™ Volume Limit Technology for Safe Listening. This technology works by limiting the volume to approximately 80% of the maximum volume output capable from audio devices in market today. KidzContro™ Volume Limit headphones are not toys – they are adult headphones built for kids. (Who hasn’t got the mental image of your child wearing your headphones – several sizes too big?). They feature ergonomic design with soft padded child-sized ear-cups and high quality audio components.

Each Kidz Gear™ headphones come with the volume limiting adaptor. The company also offer this volume limiting plug to anyone – regardless of the brand of headphone.

Going on a road trip and want to keep the kids occupied? Kidz Gear™ also have a IR and WiFi models for use in some vans – and a Bluetooth version is on the horizon. Got more than one kid and only one audio/video source? Don’t worry – a splitter is also available – for two headsets.

The KidzControl™ Volume Limit technology also addresses my concerns regarding safety. I know from personal experience that walking through the streets of Melbourne with good quality headphones on can be dangerous –you simply do not hear traffic noises and can risk serious injury or worse crossing the road. The KidzControl™ Volume Limit technology does not perform noise cancelling functions – you can still hear surrounding sounds whilst connected to an audio or video source. As with all matters relating to road and footpath safety – parental control is highly recommended – and no headphones should be worn whilst riding bikes or scooters or walking in the street.

Who are Kidz Gear™?

The Kidz Gear™ brand of products and accessories was founded in 2001 by Laurie Peterson with the purpose of developing a line of products and accessories with adult features, performance and quality, but with ergonomic and economic sizes, styles and prices for children. This year, Laurie has seen her product receive the Learning Magazine Teachers’ Choice Award for Excellence in Classroom Products.

In Australia, the headsets are being used in school language labs and other areas.

Product Specifications:

  • Free KidzControl™ Volume Limit Cable
  • Lifetime Limited Warranty
  • Built-in Volume Knob to adjust volume range (within limit)
  • Custom designed for Children 2 years and older
  • Light weight and comfortable
  • Volume limited to approximately 80% (~20dB lower) of Maximum
  • Frequency Range: 20 -20KHz
  • Sensitivity: 108dB (without KidzControl Volume Limiting)
  • Cord Length: 1.5 meters
  • Speaker size: 30mm
  • Colour options: Grey, Pink, Orange, Blue, Green, Purple

Note: The above information is not to be taken as Telstra’s endorsement of the products mentioned, or to vouch for their performance or quality; this blog is just intended to provide readers with reporting on highlights of products showcased at CES 2013.  Readers should consult the manufacturer’s websites and promotional material for full details on the products, including as to availability, any applicable terms and conditions of use, and pricing.