Low Down on Ear plugs?

Discussion in 'Effects, Pedals, Strings & Things' started by granite, Jan 3, 2006.


  1. granite

    granite Member

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    I'm starting to think that I should be using ear plugs when playing live. I know nothing about them. Can users out there give me the low down on what you're using, what's good, how some of the more complex stuff works. I vaguely remembering reading somewhere that some "models?" only block out the most damaging frequencies. What up with modern ear protection? Also, where do you buy them?
     
  2. gtrguy17

    gtrguy17 Member

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    You need to go to an audiologist. They will custom fit plugs for you and you can choose (usually) either a 9, 15 or 25 dB cut.
     
  3. aleclee

    aleclee TGP Tech Wrangler Staff Member

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    I got my Westones from an audiologist. They took a cast of my ear canals and about a week later I had the plugs. They have modular filters so you can vary the attenuation without getting all new plugs.

    If the graphs are to be believed, the 15dB filter's attenuation is about as flat as it gets. Of course there's still the Fletcher Munson curve but such is life.
     
  4. jzguitar

    jzguitar Member

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    I'll take a Randy Johnson fastball over a Fletcher Munson curve any day.

    jz
     
  5. Moe45673

    Moe45673 Member

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    check these out:
    http://www.etymotic.com/ephp/er20.aspx

    these are the one-size fits all musicians earplugs, and frankly, I can still hear myself quite clearly in the mix when these are in my ears, except now without the whole "going deaf" part.

    everyone else are recommending these:
    http://www.etymotic.com/ephp/erme.aspx

    These are the big daddies that cost a fortune. Try out the ER-20s first and see how they work, for $12 you can't go wrong! I loved em so much I bought three pairs (two for backup)!
     
  6. RGB

    RGB Supporting Member

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    The Westones are great. I still have a hard time using them at shows because of the fact that, while singing, my voice is just too loud in my head. They're great for concerts and hearing other bands though. I really should learn to use them all the time.
     
  7. NuSkoolTone

    NuSkoolTone Member

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    I have the custom westones too. Won't go anywhere without them, and I'm a guy who used to HATE earplugs. They are as close to natural as you can get, and I've tried them all.

    I personally liked being able to hear my voice better, it was like a personal monitor to me. My harmonies were better than ever!

    If you're serious about music, I say you owe it to yourself to grab these. For the price of an OD, you can protect the most important gear you own, your ears.
     
  8. Kaiser

    Kaiser Member

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    WOW, the one and only band I was in, never got t be a big gigger, but the one I'm in now will start to gig on february according to our schedule, I thought about those walmart ear plugs, I've tried it before for going to concerts, will they do the job?? :confused:
     
  9. RGB

    RGB Supporting Member

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    We have separate mixes for each vocalist and I really like to hear them somewhat. The problem is actually too much of me...if you can believe that!....and the fact that the sound in my head is not a nice flat curve, but a kind of low middy boomy version of my voice.

    I know I need to start using them though....those damn cymbals are killing me!

    I'm not familiar with the Walmart jobs, but I'm guessing this is a case of you get what you pay for.
     
  10. HarryJ

    HarryJ Member

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    +1 on the Westone plug with the 15 dB Etymotic filters. I've had 'em 'fer years. Love 'em!
    Perhaps pricy, but have you priced hearing aids??? Huh? Type louder... I CAN'T HEAR YOU!

    Harry Jacobson
    www.harryj.net
     
  11. moodog

    moodog Member

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    There is a pair at your local super-drugstore (Sav-On, WalgreenÂ’s etc) that is rated at the lowest db they got, I think at 20db. They cost about $6.
    They allow me to hear everything perfect but keep the impact from the pressure of the drums and the bass, guitars off my eardrums. And what's great is if you loose them you can get replacements quick (for a gig, practice) and cheap.
     
  12. UnderTheGroove

    UnderTheGroove Supporting Member

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    Another happy Westone user with the 15db filters. I find that I can hear things better with them in. When I take them out I don't hear as much definition of the instruments.
     
  13. stompbox

    stompbox Member

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    Will they do the job? Yes, they will save your hearing most likely. Will they alter the sound or cancel out bass or other certain frequencies, i am not sure. But one thing i am sure of is.... THEY ARE WORTH $4 FOR SAVING YOUR HEARING! I.E they are MUCH better than nothing at all. IMO.
     
  14. 6789

    6789 Member

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    I use both 15 or 25 depending on the volume. These are great earplugs. they fit comfortably for a long time. I can hear much more clearly than the foam plugs.
    www.sensaphonics.com
     
  15. Robal

    Robal Supporting Member

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    I have tried all sorts of earplugs, and the best by far are the custom fitted ones. My audiologist tested my hearing with and without the plugs inserted and showed me a graph of the results. The frequency balance I heard with the plugs in was very close to the same as no plugs, just attenuated down. They are definitely worth it and I wish I would have been using them when I was younger -- so I didn't have mild tinnitus.
     
  16. gtr777

    gtr777 Supporting Member

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    I totally agree with everyone recommending custom earplugs made by your audiologist. Yes it is more expensive but you can't cheap out when it comes to your hearing. They sound great and bring the sound level down to safe levels.
     
  17. gulliver

    gulliver Member

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    +1 ... I got the -10db ones in the '80. I had to travel 120 miles and paid about $120 as they weren't as popular as they are today. Great investment.
     
  18. Moe45673

    Moe45673 Member

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    I respectfully disagree with this statement. You can buy $4 foam earplugs and salvage your hearing. However, you won't be able to hear anything except the bass and kick drum!
     
  19. Robal

    Robal Supporting Member

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    Which will make you want to take them out, so that you will listen unprotected . . . and damage your hearing.
     

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