The best ear protection for shooting is essential at the time of the shooting. I'm here looking for to know the difference between generic and electronics earplugs. I think electronic hearing protection is the best way to protect hearing at the time of the shooting. Thoughts?
This is an honest question...what do you mean by "at the time of the shooting"? But really I think either is fine, you can get fine protection from a $10 pair of earmuffs or even ear plugs. Look for around 30db reduction. Active protection (electronic) is just as good but there's always a chance for dead battery or malfunction.
I've been on a hunt for semi-related info. Long ago a hunter expressed the need to hear well in the field (hear the buck shuffling) yet avoid the gun noise, and the short-term hearing loss (to hear which way the wounded buck went).
At that time a mechanical "blast valve" was patented. Supposed to pass small sounds and block large pressures. Dubious functionality.
This has evolved into ear-blocks with electronic amplifiers with limiters. The small sounds below 80dB SPL can be gained 0dB to 15dB. Large sounds above 100dB are limited, and a good block has >20dB attenuation, so gunshot sound is less.
For "just shooting", yes good ear-muffs are valuable and inexpensive. Earplugs are less effective on their own. Both types vary a lot, and are prone to momentary loss of seal when gritting teeth, turning head, etc. Using both plugs and muffs is common practice in HIGH noise work.
Get the very very best you can afford. I just was fitted with hearing aids. Some massive damage because of unprotected shooting while in the CMF in my late teens. I was talking to the audiologist about this very issue and she recommended moulded ear inserts combined with external ear muffs. Moulded inserts $135AUD a pair
SLRs are loud as were the 155mm artillery pieces in our regiment and cotton wool balls in the ears really did nothing to prevent the damage. You need to be able to cut 135dB to a safe level
> Get the very very best you can afford. I just was fitted with hearing aids.
I am actually hunting hearing aids. I no longer understand the high parts of soft speech.
I have been losing highs for decades. Unevenly L/R. I stopped trying to mix stereo 16 years ago when I realized I could not get a "stable center image" on recordings I knew should center like a monorail.
I had some youthful hours in LOUD music. I have only a dozen shots of 30-06 and 12ga but hundreds of rounds of 22 rimfire. I had hearing a decade after this, and by that time I was loud-adverse, and wore muffs for any loud work. I seem to take after my Dad, about the same loss at about the same rate. Bad Genes. However bad or good genes, no reason to add stress and speed hearing loss. It is very isolating. It is sneaky. It doesn't get better. And aids are NOT a cure, just a help.
Continuous loud sounds allow your ears to adjust, fluid pressure limiting the excursion of the eardrum. Since shooting results in a sudden loud sound, the eardrum is "overdriven" and requires much more effective protection. Firing a Dessert Eagle .50 or a .44 mag revolver will test any hearing protection gear.
Incidentally, using a circular cutter/grinder on masonry and concrete is really nasty for the ears.
I regularly (weekly+) use electronic ear muffs while shooting (Walker brand ~$50 US). I believe the ones I use are -29 or -32db, don't remember exactly. During weekly competitions, standing within a few feet of pistol muzzles or nearby large bore rifles, etc., they work great. The concussion wave hitting you in the gut from those large bores is far more uncomfortable!
They're basically a normal pair of headphone type 'muffs' with speakers inside and microphones on the outside. When a loud sound is detected the electronics will instantly cut the volume until the sound has reduced. Closing a car door is enough to do it.
The best part of this type is the ability to hold a normal conversation in between rounds without having to take them off or move them aside to understand what was said and getting caught unprotected.
Typically they also have the ability to amplify normal sounds many times for hunting. A soft whisper from across the room can be clearly understood as well as a deer (or insert favorite prey) heard rustling far off in the distance. You can also communicate quietly with your hunting partner. They're quite effective.
Best to get the kind that have stereo microphones and maintain locational information. The mono kind sounds like you're in a hallway or in a tube. When wielding some rifles they do tend to get in the way and in that case I will use an ear plug type of protection then switch back afterwards, in between rounds, so I can talk to my friends and competitors about how great my last round was.
> Continuous loud sounds allow your ears to adjust, fluid pressure limiting the excursion of the eardrum. ........
Not really, either effect or cause. Yes, at high level a muscle in the ear tenses-up and reduces ear-bone leverage; this is typically already damaging. And fluid pressure is how the ear works, not how it refuses sound. Your "grinder on masonry" IS a good example. And yes, shooting is something else altogether.
> ...I think this is spam publicity thinly disguised as a real question but ...
That was my first thought: unfamiliar name, commercial link embedded in post. I even suggested that at first. But I reviewed 'jacksimonton's posts: they go back many months and are semi-relevant to the threads they are in. Penny-per-post spammers don't work this hard. So I edited that out of my initial reply.