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Concerts are undoubtedly fun. There’s nothing that music festival-goers love more than listening to their favorite tunes cranked up high. For many, this is a thrilling experience that makes them feel more immersed and connected to the music.
But did you know that such very high levels of noise pose a serious risk to your hearing? We’re all for enjoying music and attending concerts, but not if these activities cause damage to your hearing. Attending too many concerts without protecting your ears will lead to a constant ringing in your ears and muffled hearing. These will usually dissipate within a couple of hours or days until you attend the next concert. This sensation is known as tinnitus and it causes noise-induced hearing loss (NIHL).
So does this mean that you should stop attending concerts and stay indoors all day long? Not necessarily. The smarter and more deliberate move is to protect your hearing by investing in the best earplugs for concerts. These earplugs are uniquely designed in such a way that they reduce decibel levels but don’t completely block out sound.
What are the Best Earplugs for Concerts?
The best earplugs for concerts are nothing like the foam earplugs that people wear when they’re sleeping. Foam earplugs for concertsare meant to block every kind of sound entirely. Instead, concert earplugs allow some level of sound transmission, so that you’re still able to hear the full spectrum of sound near you. In fact, earplugs for concerts even improve the clarity of these sounds.
Below find the best earplugs for concerts:
1. EarDial HiFi Earplugs
If looks are an important factor when purchasing concert earplugs, the EarDial HiFi have one of the best designs.
They have an exceptional filtering system, which has been lab-tested under ANSI and EN standards. Based on these tests, it was found that the filters leave the frequency spectrum of sounds very intact.
Furthermore, EarDial earplugs are constructed from a soft, hypoallergenic silicone. They also boast an internal port system, which prevents any wax buildup in your ears.
But the key highlight of these earplugs is that they work with a mobile app, making it easy to adjust sound levels and frequencies.
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2. Reverbs High Fidelity Ear Plugs
The Reverbs High Fidelity are a fantastic option for individuals looking for the best noise-reduction earplugs. They’re constructed from high-grade natural silicone, which is known for its noise reducing capabilities.
For optimal use, the Reverbs come with two types of filters. The white filter reduces noise by 28 dB while the green filter reduces to 20 dB.
Better yet, you don’t have to worry about developing ear problems as these earplugs are 100% safe to wear. These earplugs can be used by different professionals ranging from drummers to motorcyclists, DJs and musicians.
3. EarPeace Ear Plugs
The EarPeace high-fidelity earplugs are some of the best in the market. They boast a unique design that delivers superb sound quality. Ideally, these earplugs help you to listen to clearer sounds but at a lower volume. They achieve this by filtering out unnecessary background noises.
These earplugs are designed for the loudest music shows and concerts. Plus, they feel very comfortable to wear. If you want, you can even sleep in them. EarPeace earplugs are made of soft, hypoallergenic material- silicone.
4. Eargasm High Fidelity Earplugs
The Eargasm are a musician’s best friend. Not only do they remove excess noise from your background, but they also improve the quality of sound you listen to. A key highlight of these earplugs involves the volume adjustment feature. It allows users to adjust the number of ambient sounds in their backgrounds. With these earplugs, you can hear just about any sound at a safe level.
These earplugs outperform traditional earmuffs when it comes protecting your hearing. They work by screening out noise; thus, allowing only the ‘good’ sound to pass through your ears.
5. Vibes High Fidelity Concert Earplugs
Nearly all earplugs function by blocking one’s ear canal and minimizing the intensity of sound; the outcome- quieter sounds and safer hearing. Although drowning out excess sounds is a good idea, drowning out some of the environmental sounds that’s needed to keep us safe can be problematic. The Viber earplugs are designed to solve this problem. Instead of simply muting sound, these earplugs screen out excess noise by using sound tubes.
According to the manufacturer, these earplugs lower up to 22 dB of volume while allowing you to enjoy your favorite songs. What’s more, the earplugs provide a comfortable fit for all ear types. There’s also a case to store your earplugs for easy accessibility.
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6. Pinkies High Fidelity Concert Ear Plugs
Available in a blend of white and hot pink color, the Pinkies are another excellent option to consider. These earplugs help in reducing volume levels while still maintaining good sound quality and clarity.
Pinkies are an example of noise isolating earplugs, making them suitable for DJs, drummers, vocalists and other kinds of musicians. They way these earplugs work is that they isolate the sound you want to hear then eliminate excessive noise levels.
7. Zildjian HD Ear Plugs
If you’re looking for a budget-friendly option, the Zildjian HD Ear Plugs are your best bet. Made of soft, hypoallergenic silicone, these earplugs will help you listen to all the high notes. You’ll also be able to hear your friend speaking and engage them in conversations.
The silicone material used in making these earplugs means that they are comfortable to wear for prolonged periods. Also, they’re equipped with multiple filters, which help to improve the clarity of sound.
Earplugs for Concerts Buying Guide
Why It Is Important To Protect Your Ears at a Concert
Many people have this false notion that hearing problems are brought about by prolonged exposure to very loud noises. But this is not entirely true. In fact, for a few individuals, all it takes is just one very loud concert and the hearing problem sets in. Unlike in the movies, you’re not likely to lose your hearing because a single bang like a gunshot or explosion that happened in very close proximity. Instead, it is simple activities like attending concerts, music festivals and clubs that set this problem in motion.
A common symptom that you will encounter if the noise level at a concert affects you, entails a mild ringing in your ears. You may also feel like your ears are in a bubble, just like how things sound when you’re having a cold. For most cases, this problem resolves itself within a few hours or days. But for some, this marks the beginning of their hearing problems. In the following days, the latter group of victims may experience more symptoms.
And contrary to what most people assume, sounds do not have to be extremely loud to cause hearing damage. If you’re constantly exposed to sound levels as low as 85 decibels, hearing issues will begin to develop overtime. The constant exposure to this noise is the same as the noise emanating from heavy traffic or garbage disposal. The noise at a restaurant can reach noise level of up to 60 decibels. Music at concerts reaches a staggering 120 decibels.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention report that exposing your ears to 100-decibel range for just 15 minutes can lead to hearing loss. With 120 decibels of sound, this individual will not only lose his hearing but also experience pain.
Now, factor in the aspect that most concerts last for no less than 2 hours. Ideally, for every concert that you attend, there’s a high likelihood of encountering some hearing damage. If you’ve gone to an all-day music festival, the possibility of hearing loss goes even higher.
This does not mean that you should stop attending music festivals and concerts. You can still go to these events but be smart about it. Ensure you have quality ear protection such as concert earplugs. This way, you can enjoy listening to favorite band but in a more responsible way.
How Concert Earplugs Are Different From Standard Earplugs
As mentioned earlier, concert earplugs are not your typical earplugs. Their design does not muffle or distort sound transmission completely. Instead, concert earplugs help in improving sound quality while also lowering the volume to an acceptable level. They do this by employing acousticfilters that aid in lowering noises to a consistent level across the whole sound spectrum.
In a nutshell, concert earplugs help to provide a high fidelity experience, enabling you to hear music without compromising on your hearing.
Traditional earplugs are not ideal for concerts and music festivals for several reasons. For one, they have a tendency of lowering some sounds more than others. This causes a deteriorated listening experience. Secondly, they don’t muffle voices efficiently. By distorting some sounds a lot more than others, traditional earplugs make music less enjoyable. In fact, it can be very difficult to understand words and intonations when you’re wearing traditional earplugs.
But with concert earplugs, you will not experience this. You will be able to hear all the words that your partner is saying with superb clarity. Plus, concert earplugs boast a low-profile design.With these invisible earplugs for concerts, no one will notice that you’re wearing them.
If you still feel like wearing concert earplugs is dorky, then consider this- almost all musicians wear them when they’re performing on stage.
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Types of Earplugs
Before you go shopping for concert earplugs, it’s a good idea to learn the main types of earplugs available in the market. These are:
These are the most popular and also the cheapest kinds of earplugs on the market. The way these earplugs work is by compressing them and then inserting them into your ear canals. One of the reasons why foam earplugs are preferred by many is because they offer the highest level of decibel reduction.
Keep in mind that the way you insert your earplugs will have a considerable impact on their comfort and efficiency. If you factor in the sophistication involved in using them, they may not be the best choice if you need to insert and remove them regularly.
Flanged earplugs consist of lips or rims, which come in cone shapes. The purpose of these rims is create a barrier that seals against the ear canal. As long as they are properly inserted into the ear, these earplugs work perfectly. On the flipside, these are not the most comfortable earplugs to wear, especially if you’re wearing them for a long time.
But if you want to go for flanged earplugs, we recommend the EtymoticER-20- some high-fidelity earplugs. Eargasm is another reputable brand that makes supreme quality earplugs, which use the flanged design.
These earplugs are tailored to drummers and other stage musicians. These earplugs differ from traditional earplugs in that they provide very clear sounds. All these earplugs do is to lower the sound level without compromising on quality. High-fidelity earplugs are available in reusable universal fit and also customized versions.
One of the first high-fidelity earplugs that spring on the market were the ER-20. But recently, many brands have ventured into this sector, providing consumers with more options such as the Earasers and Eargasm high fidelity earplugs.
Constructed from silicone, these earplugs are simply customized to fit a specific individual. They are contoured to take the shape of your ears’ interior section; hence, providing a snug fit. This means that the earplugs won’t exert any pressure on the sides of your ear canal, which is the contributing factor of discomfort. The drawback of custom earplugs is that most of them cost $100 or more. These earplugs are made by several manufacturers, a majority of whom specialize in high-end audio and hearing gadgets like Sensaphonics.
If you decide to go for custom earplugs, you’ll have to choose between two main types- solid silicone and high-fidelity musician earplugs. The latter consist of attenuating filters, resulting in a flat attenuation; hence, producing a clear, natural sound. The filters used in this case have different levels of attenuation, allowing you to choose a specific level of sound protection. If you’re aprofessional musician or performer, the ER-25 filters will work nicely to give you optimal protection.
The Risks of Not Wearing Earplugs?
Temporary Threshold Shift
This is a momentary shift in the auditory threshold. This shift happens rather abruptly following a prolonged exposure to high noise levels, and it can lead to temporary loss of hearing.
People who suffer from this condition are also likely to develop temporary tinnitus. The primary cause of temporary threshold shift that leads to a hearing impairment has to do with getting exposed to very intense sounds- whether it’s for a short or long period.
Long Term Hearing Loss
If you thought that temporary threshold shift is the worst condition, you thought wrong. What’s worse is when this shift becomes permanent. Hearing loss that’s brought about by noise is a reality and irreversible.
Our hearing capability is made possible by the tiny hair cells present in the cochlea. These cells are responsible for transmitting signals to the brain- a process that enables one to hear. When you expose yourself to a loud environment, these cells get damaged, and this causes distortions in sound.
Another condition that’s caused by prolonged exposure to loud noise is Tinnitus. This is characterized by an annoying and consistent ringing in your ears. Like the hearing loss, Tinnitus is an irreversible condition. If you’ve already been diagnosed with Tinnitus, wearing earplugs is not going to fix anything. The only way that earplugs can help is by mitigating risk and protecting one’s ears from suffering more damage.
Benefits of wearing earplugs in loud environments
Reducing the risk of Tinnitus
One of the perks of investing in earplugs is that they protect your hearing when you’re in a loud environment. In addition to preventing the intensity of loud music, wearing earplugs also reduces your chance of getting Tinnitus.
A common misconception surrounding the use of audiophile earplugs is that once an individual wears earplugs then he cannot hear a sound nor partake in conversations. Contrary to this belief, you will be able to listen to music and other sounds in your surrounding very clearly. The main way that earplugs help is by reducing excessive noise.
Reducing Hearing loss
As we mentioned earlier, attending concerts, festivals and clubs where people play loud music, can put you at a risk of damaged hearing. This is where earplugs come in handy. These devices are designed in a unique way, allowing only quality noise to enter your ears while omitting unwanted sounds. In doing so, you keep your ears healthy for longer. If you love listening to loud music, then investing in a set of earplugs is a must.
Food For Thought
It can be devastating to get diagnosed with severe hearing problems like Tinnitus. Such a condition needs to be managed on a daily basis. On the plus side, this is a preventable condition. If you’re like the kind of person who attends clubs, festivals and every concert in town, you need to minimize your risk of hearing problems by wearing earplugs.
Still not convinced?
If you’re still on the fence about getting earplugs, then consider these statistics:
- In the UK, nearly 11 million people are suffering from some degree of hearing loss
- One in every 10 UK adults suffers from Tinnitus. Recent studies show that in 2016, there were 32,000 new cases of this condition in England.
How to Select the Best Earplugs for Concerts
There’s a myriad of concert earplugs on the market. As such, you have to be very knowledgeable to find a pair that addresses your needs. For instance, some earplugs are meant for swim use, others block out sounds when you sleep while others are designed for live music. Each kind of earplugs has specific features that make it fit for that function. This means that concert-goers, you should look for earplugs designed specifically to handle loud environments without compromising on sound quality.
Tips for Selecting the Best Earplugs for Concerts
- Go for earplugs that minimize noise level by at least 10 to 15 dB- this will help you listen to music at a reasonable threshold.
- Choose earplugs whose volume is easy to adjust at all frequencies.
Noise Reduction Rating
Based on your proximity to the concert speakers, the most powerful of these equipment can reach up to 120 dB.Even if you’re standing at the back, chances are that you’ll be exposed to at least 100 dB.But this also depends on your proximity to the speakers, the direction these speakers are facing and where you’re located. That said, one of the things you’ll want to consider is the noise reduction rating of the earplugs.
This rating can make the difference between being capable of tolerating sound for 15 minutes, during which an ear problem can develop. With a good set of earplugs, you can enjoy bellowing music for up to eight hours. Most concerts last for about 4 hours, so it helps to invest in ear protective devices.
By now, you understand that the noise reduction rating is not just important in terms of decibels but also in relation to the duration that one is exposed to. Say a set of earplugs has a noise reduction rating of 10dB, this will provide great ear protection for about two hours. Essentially, the higher the noise reduction rating, the longer the duration that you can tolerate the filtered down and lower levels of noise.
When it comes to the design, you need not focus on the outward appearance of the earplugs only. Sure, some earplugs have killer designs. But you should always prioritize functionality over design. For instance, if you got a sweet spot at the concert and didn’t need to use your earplugs, would they be easy to remove?Are they easy to store away on your key-ring or around your neck? Do they have a solid casing such as aluminum to prevent them from getting damaged if you accidentally drop them or sit on them?
But remember that a functional design is more than its ease of storage. As such, you should also focus on their performance. While some earplugs help to block out sounds in a mechanical way, others only filter out sounds to reasonable levels.
It Helps to Have Options
Some brands provide a range of options when it comes to the earplugs’ filters. Some are packaged in a convenient way, allowing users to attach and swap the filters to get their desired levels of noise reduction.
Some manufacturers will include two different pairs of earplugs, giving you varying levels of ear protection.
To choose the perfect concert earplugs, you also need to consider the environment in which you’ll be using them. For example, it wouldn’t make sense to pick earplugs meant for shooting and hunting to wear to a concert or music festival.
The Bottom Line
Its no news that concerts, festivals, clubs and other events can get pretty loud. Taking the venue acoustics and type of music into account, the noise level for an average concert reaches about 100 dB or louder. Now, if you expose your ears to such a high level of noise for just 15 minutes, you risk damaging your auditory system. I don’t about you, but I’ve never attended a concert that lasted 15 minutes. So, what’s the best solution? Concert earplugs! When inserted in one’s ears properly, these devices are effective at protecting your hearing while still allowing some of the sound to reach your ears. So if you plan to attend a concert, arm yourself with a pair of earplugs.