When you’re looking for suitable headphones, speakers or other electronic devices, you may consider different factors, such as their performance, battery life, portability, durability and so on. However, there’s one factor that’s equally critical and requires your attention. Yes, we’re talking about the IP rating. Is the device IPX7 waterproof? Can you use it in the shower?
The IP Number indicates how well-protected a device is against elements, such as dust, water, and so on. As more and more people want both dustproof and waterproof devices, the IP code has become more important than ever.
However, it does not allow for ambiguity in its definitions, unlike phrases like “water-resistant” and “dust-resistant.” It’s not just a catchphrase; it’s a simple categorization scheme. In a market where weatherproofing is all the rage, it’s important to know how well you can keep dust and water out of your gadgets, especially your headphones.
What Is an IPX Rating?
IP is an abbreviation that may refer to either International Protection or Ingress Protection. It refers to the degree to which your device is protected against water, dust, and so on.
First, Second and Third Letters Following “IP”
The IP code rating system has two rating scales: the dust protection rating scale and the water protection rating scale. Out of the two letters or numbers that follow the acronym, the first digit or letter indicates the amount of protection against dust infiltration and the second digit or letter indicates the level of protection against water infiltration.
Sometimes, there is a third letter, H, M, S, F or W, which denote protection against other elements. For instance, a value of H indicates that the company tested your device under high-voltage conditions. In addition, a value of M indicates that the device completed a test involving “moving through water.” Furthermore, a value of S indicates that your device can stand in water; a value of W suggests that the manufacturing company tested it in various weather conditions, and a value of F denotes oil resistance.
The First Number
The first number after “IP” refers to the device enclosure’s degree of protection against dust and dirt. There is no dust resistance if the scale is set to zero, while a rating of 6 indicates that the casing is completely dustproof.
The Second Number
The second number is a rating from 0 to 9 that describes how well the enclosure keeps water out. Zero once again denotes an absence of safety. A pressure rating of 9 indicates that hot water from any direction will not damage the enclosure.
What Does IPX7 Waterproof Mean?
It’s important to recognize that an X in this context indicates lack of data regarding dust protection. However, there is something more essential to discuss: number 7.
The rating IPX7 indicates that a device can survive continuous immersion in water up to 1 meter deep for 30 minutes.
If you’re still unclear, the following is a list of ratings with a short description of each and how water resistant they are.
IPX Ratings and What They Indicates
- IPX0: Indicates that a device has no protection against liquids or dust.
- IPX1: Indicates that a device is poorly protected against water and dust. It will not withstand a flood (by any stretch of the imagination), but it will guard against light rains and intermittent water droplets that strike at an angle of ninety degrees. This degree of water resistance is optimal for protecting against sweat and light precipitation when jogging outside in the elements.
- IPX2: Indicates that a device is somewhat protected against water droplets and should be able to endure drops striking at an angle of 15 degrees for up to ten minutes. Again, this category is most appropriate for light outdoor usage in areas with a risk of precipitation or sweating.
- IPX3: Indicates the protection of a device against water droplets striking at an angle of 60 degrees.
- IPX4: First water resistance grade. It indicates that a device is absolutely protected against liquids striking it from any direction, but only for brief periods, such as a spray of water that you can immediately wipe up.
- IPX5: Indicates significant water resistance and that a device can remain protected for up to ten minutes against light water spray coming from any direction. This level of water resistance is measured in inches of water pressure. It still doesn’t mean your device is suitable for using in the shower.
- IPX6: Indicates that a device can withstand three minutes of intense jet water. In addition, the device is suitable for use in the shower for a limited duration.
- IPX7: Indicates that a device can be completely submerged (in up to 1 meter deep water) for half an hour.
- IPX8: Indicates that a device can withstand longer submersion periods.
- IPX9: Indicates the peak of water resistance and gives practically complete water protection against all sorts of water invasions, particularly hot, scalding water jets.
Is IPX7 Suitable for the Shower?
It certainly is. If a product has an IPX7 certification, it is completely waterproof, and you can submerge it in water up to one meter deep for up to half an hour. Therefore, it should not be affected by the presence of a few drops or sprays of water. These days, you can easily find many Bluetooth shower speakers and headphones that have an IPX7 classification.
Which Is Better IPX7 or IP67?
The IP67 comes with dust proofing, the primary difference between the two. Devices certified IPX7 do not offer protection against dust. Nevertheless, neither of these devices get damaged if you immerse them in water up to one meter deep for half an hour. However, the IP67 classification is a considerably more robust grade that will protect your device more effectively and in different environments and weather conditions.
If you have an option and are willing to pay what is almost certainly going to be a greater price, the IP67 rating is the one you should go with. It provides far higher levels of protection, defending your device not just against water but also against dust and other airborne solid particles in addition to water.
How Should You Use Devices With IPX7 Rating?
The manufacturing companies put all headphones, earbuds, speakers, phones, and watches with IPX7 Rating protection through rigorous testing to ensure they can withstand prolonged submersion 1-meter deep water for up to 30 minutes. Scientists determine the maximal protection value by submerging test equipment for a long time. They only submerge devices with IPX7 or IPX8 ratings for the entire test duration. The devices that make it through the test are branded as waterproof.
However, any device passing the IPX7 test doesn’t indicate it has passed the tests for other IPX grades as well. In other words, just because your gadget is IPX7-rated doesn’t mean it can withstand water jets or splashes from any direction.
Therefore, it would help if you exercise caution while using any electronic device in water. For example, contact with water may severely harm electronic components.
If you’re worried about rain ruining your device while hiking or enjoying a picnic outdoors, get an IPX4-, IPX5-, or IPX6-rated device since it can withstand splashes or jets of water from different angles. On the other hand, if you’re looking for a waterproof device, for example waterproof speakers for a poolside or beach party, or shower headphones, we recommend getting an IPX7- or IPX8-rated device.
You may find ratings of IPX4, IPX5, IPX6, and IPX7 on most waterproof and water resistant cellphones, outdoor speakers, sports headphones and earbuds, and waterproof or water resistant smartphones.
The IP rating can be of great help if you want to determine a device’s protection against dust, water, and other elements, such as oil, high voltage, and so on.
Therefore, the next time you’re buying a pair of headphones, a pair of speakers, or any other electronic device, don’t forget to check the IP rating to make an informed choice, especially if you’re looking for a waterproof or water-resistant device.