Musicians have unique needs when it comes to protecting their ears and hearing. They need to protect their hearing while being able to hear their own music clearly, as well as hear other musicians’ music and voices when performing.
Conventional store-bought ear plugs are good at providing hearing protection. However, they often provide too much protection for musicians, as they muffle speech and sound in the process. Music and voices tend to sound unclear and unnatural. While conventional hearing protection can reduce very high frequencies, this amount of hearing protection is typically not needed for musicians.
Most musicians do not need maximum protection. Musicians mainly need mid to low-frequency protection. This can be accomplished through ear plugs that are specifically designed for musicians.
Musician’s Ear Plugs
Musician’s ear plugs come in custom and non-custom options. Ready-fit musician ear plugs can reduce sound levels by approximately 20 dB, which enough to reduce harmful sound without distorting speech or music.
These type of ear plugs are deep in order to allow the earmold to seal within the bony portion of the ear canal. This deep fit reduces what is known as occlusion - a hollow or boomy sound in the musicians own voice that is sometimes experienced with lower quality ear plugs. These types of deep-fit earmolds are popular with musicians because of the quality of sound they allow them to hear while practicing and performing.
Musician’s ear plugs are for musicians AND sound crews, recording engineers, band teachers, concert goers, DJ's, airline professionals, athletics coaches & athletes, referees, motorcyclists, medical professionals, construction workers, industrial workers, and truck drivers.
In-Ear Musician Monitors
For musicians who perform for large audiences, in-ear musician monitors (IEMs) are the current standard in musician technology. They allow the musician to clearly hear the music they are making as the audience would hear it while still protecting their ears from extremely loud amplification systems and audiences.
IEMs work best if they are custom molded to fit each musician's ears personally. There is also an option of universal fit musician monitors. Universal IEMs typically come with interchangeable foam or silicone tips to allow for a semi-custom fit.
Earmolds and IEMs can be custom made (using a mold) to fit your unique ear shape by an audiologist.
The ear impression that is used to make the earmold or in-ear monitor is the most important part of the process in getting a good custom fit. The quality of the ear impression material and technique directly impacts the sound quality, sound isolation, and comfort that is achieved with the earmold.
Because this part of the process is so crucial, it's important that you work with an experienced and trained audiologist.
Speak with our audiologists about the experience they have in custom fitting patients with musician’s ear plugs and IEMs and about your options for high-quality occupational hearing protection.